Tag Archives: Community Impact Team

Why Aren’t BID Security Patrols Registered with the Los Angeles Police Commission?

Any badge, insignia, patch or uniform used or worn by any employee, officer, member or associate of a private patrol service, while on duty for said patrol service, shall be in compliance with State law.  Any such badge, insignia, patch or uniform shall not be of such a design as to be mistaken for an official badge, insignia or uniform worn by a law enforcement officer of the City of Los Angeles or any other law enforcement agency with jurisdiction in the City. LAMC 52.34(d)(1)
Any badge, insignia, patch or uniform used or worn by any employee, officer, member or associate of a private patrol service, while on duty for said patrol service, shall be in compliance with State law. Any such badge, insignia, patch or uniform shall not be of such a design as to be mistaken for an official badge, insignia or uniform worn by a law enforcement officer of the City of Los Angeles or any other law enforcement agency with jurisdiction in the City. LAMC 52.34(d)(1)
Recently I was reading the Los Angeles Municipal Code1 and came across LAMC 52.34, which discusses “private patrol services” and their employees, “street patrol officers.” The gist of it seems to be2 that private patrol service operators must register with the Police Commission, and also prove that their employees’ uniforms and badges don’t look too much like real police uniforms and badges. They’re also required to have a complaint process and submit lists of employees and some other things too.

Well, as you can see from the photo above, and from innumerable other photos and videos I’ve obtained from the Hollywood BID Patrol, there is a real problem with BID Patrol officers looking like LAPD. Their uniforms are the same color, their badges are the same shape and color, and so on. Also, they’re famous for not having a complaint process, or at least not one that anyone can discover easily. The Andrews International BID Patrol isn’t the only one with this problem, either. The Media District‘s security vendor, Universal Protection Service, doesn’t seem to have one either. In fact, it was UPS Captain John Irigoyen‘s refusal to accept a complaint about two of his officers that inspired the establishment of this blog. The A/I BID Patrol is as guilty of this lapse as anyone.

Richard Tefank, Executive Director of the LA Police Commission.
Richard Tefank, Executive Director of the LA Police Commission.

The fact that private patrol operators were required to file actual documents with a city agency means that copies would be available! So I fired off some public records requests to Richard Tefank, Executive Director of the Police Commission. He answered right away and told me they’d get right on it. What a relief to discover that Police Commission CPRA requests don’t have to go through the LAPD Discovery Section, which is so notoriously slow to respond that the City of LA has had to pay tens of thousands of dollars in court-imposed fines due to their tardiness. Mr. Tefank handed me off to an officer in the permits section, and he told me that none of the three BID security contractors I asked about; Andrews International, Universal Protection, and Streetplus3 were registered. How could this be, I wondered, given what seems like the plain language of the statute? The story turns out to be immensely complicated, and with lots of new documents.
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That Time in 2014 When Kerry Morrison Helped John Tronson Cheat on his Homework and then Went and Spilled the Beans to the Cops that He Had Plagiarized his Work

John Tronson's body double posing for a headshot in 2014.
John Tronson’s body double posing for a headshot in 2014.
If you want to read it, here is the “President’s Message”, originally published over then-HPOA-president John Tronson’s name in the Summer 2014 issue of the HPOA’s quarterly newsletter, HEDLines.1Let’s examine some of the highlights! First about the street characters:

LAPD has been quite proactive in their efforts to address lawbreakers amongst the cast of characters and vendors that populate the sidewalks in front of the Dolby Theatre. There has been an improvement over last summer, possibly due to the commitment of two undercover task forces doing surprise enforcement every month. Though this represents a huge devotion of resources by the department to this effort, it helps to reinforce that laws must been
[sic] adhered to and weeds out the trouble-makers. We are very appreciative of this strategy.

Oh wait!!! That’s not actually from John Tronson’s essay. What he wrote was:

Zarcone and Palka heard loud and clear the community’s frustration with the bad behaviors of the cast of characters and vendors that populate the sidewalks in front of the Dolby Theatre. The summer of 2014 is shaping up to be much calmer likely due to the commitment of an undercover task force doing surprise enforcement twice a month. Though this represents a huge devotion of resources by the department to this effort, it helps to reinforce that laws must be adhered to and it weeds out the trouble-makers. We are very appreciative of this strategy.

The first passage was written by Kerry Morrison in an email exchange with LAPD-ites Mark Dibell, Cory Palka, and Richard Gabaldon. And there’s more after the break.
Continue reading That Time in 2014 When Kerry Morrison Helped John Tronson Cheat on his Homework and then Went and Spilled the Beans to the Cops that He Had Plagiarized his Work

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