Los Angeles Sheriff Scandal: 41 Deputies Alleged to Belong to Gangs - Rolling Stone
You don’t need to be an investigative agent or journalist to sense the difference between the Los Angeles Sheriff Deputies and our Los Angeles Police Officers. For instance, the subway has hired both over the years. The differences were palpable. In my own humble opinion, LAPD does a better job down there. In any case, we can not have law enforcers flouting the law.
The terminology used to describe these deputy gangs has been controversial. They have also variously been described as “subgroups” and “cliques.” In February, Sheriff Villanueva sent a letter to the county board of supervisors demanding that they “cease and desist from using the derogatory term ‘deputy gangs,’” arguing that the term “serves no purpose other than to fuel hatred … against our people.”
But Huntsman makes clear his office is investigating the deputies under a specific section of the California penal code that prohibits “law enforcement gangs.” And Huntsman is far from alone in denouncing LASD gang activity. Last year, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) called for a federal investigation of the Executioners, whom she described as “a rogue, violent gang of law enforcement officials.” This February, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), chair of the House Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, similarly called for the Justice Department to launch “a full investigation” into “violent contingents of deputies” who belong to “unauthorized, exclusive, and secretive gangs.”
In his letter, Huntsman blasts Villanueva’s top deputy, undersheriff Timothy Murakami, for failing to turn over documents related to the gang investigation requested in January. “The Sheriffs Department may not refuse to produce the records requested,” Huntsman writes, “by unilaterally declaring that no deputy sheriff is a member of a ‘law enforcement gang.’” The inspector general writes that he’s “required by law to investigate” potential gang activity, and that the law also requires the LASD to cooperate.