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Countywide : LAPD Officer Admits Felonies During Chase

Community News Focus

September 27, 1995|KEN ELLINGWOOD

A Los Angeles police officer pleaded guilty Tuesday to two felony charges stemming from a high-speed chase that began when officers suspected he was having sex in a pickup truck outside a Buena Park adult theater.

David Robert Bergstrom, 36, of Orange pleaded guilty to evading arrest and trying to bribe a witness--a strip-club dancer who was with him. He also pleaded guilty to misdemeanor drunk driving and admitted he had a gun in his possession.

Authorities dropped a misdemeanor charge of lewd conduct because of lack of evidence.

Bergstrom faces up to four years in prison when he is sentenced Nov. 27 by North Municipal Judge Richard E. Behn.

"We're satisfied with the plea, that the officer was convicted of the two most serious charges, the felonies," Deputy Dist. Atty. Marc Kelly said. "It's not every day that you see a police officer convicted of a felony."

Bergstrom is relieved of duty pending the outcome of an internal disciplinary probe, Los Angeles Police Department spokesman Sgt. William Guerrero said.

The incident began July 22 when Buena Park police officers thought they saw a burglar peeking into a pickup truck parked near the Studio Theater in the 7800 block of Beach Boulevard. When they approached, it appeared two people were having sex inside, police said.

The driver took off and led officers on a chase--at times going in the wrong direction on freeway ramps--at speeds exceeding 80 m.p.h. The truck was abandoned and the woman, a 19-year-old stripper from Anaheim, was found hiding in bushes nearby.

Authorities traced the license plate to Bergstrom and filed criminal charges three weeks later.

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