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Metropolitan Digest / LOS ANGELES COUNTY NEWS IN BRIEF

LOS ANGELES : Briseno Sues City, Alleges It Did Not Provide Defense

October 13, 1994

Former Los Angeles police officer Theodore J. Briseno sued the city of Los Angeles on Wednesday, alleging it failed to provide him a defense in the criminal, civil and administrative proceedings stemming from the Rodney G. King beating.

Briseno, fired from the force for kicking King, claims in his federal lawsuit that the city retaliated against him for comments he made after the March 3, 1991, videotaped beating of King in Lake View Terrace.

The city was "quick to point fingers, leaving its own dedicated employees 'out to dry,' so to speak, by refusing to provide a . . . required defense," according to his lawsuit.

Deputy City Atty. Don Vincent, who handled the claims against the city in the federal civil trial, had not seen the complaint, but said "the city paid for his representation" during the trials.

The plaintiff claims that "at no time during the trials concerning Officer Briseno did the city provide for his defense."

The lawsuit names ex-Chief Daryl F. Gates, Chief Willie L. Williams and eight LAPD officials involved in the Board of Rights hearing that eventually led to the officer's firing by Williams.

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