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Garcetti and LAPD

May 28, 2000

How can the media and others blame Dist. Atty. Gil Garcetti for the Rampart scandal? His only mistake was trusting sworn officers' testimony. The fault lies within the Police Department and the city attorney. The scandal had its roots in the chiefs of police from William Parker through Daryl Gates and a do-nothing Willie Williams, and has been exacerbated by the arrogance of Bernard Parks.

Put the blame and install corrective measures in the departmental command and demand oversight and control by a proactive Police Commission. Why weren't the Christopher Commission recommendations instituted? Therein lies the blame, not the unsuspecting and trusting district attorney who was fulfilling his duties by prosecuting alleged criminals.

HAROLD A. HAYTIN

Los Angeles

* How many more officers with the same mind-set as Rafael Perez are still employed by the LAPD?

The public has now been told over 70 criminal cases have been overturned and potentially tens of millions of dollars in legal fees and settlements may be incurred as a direct result of Perez's testimony regarding just his own misdeeds as an officer working in the now infamous CRASH Unit.

No reasonable person could conclude the problem is contained among a few officers or any single division within the department. That would be entirely foolhardy and it would be a disservice to the officers who are out there every day, honorably performing their jobs.

The LAPD has over 9,000 in its ranks. They still have a great deal of opportunity, beyond Perez, to look forward to. Without a doubt.

ERICH W. WILLIAMS

Santa Ana

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