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Lee Baca

August 14, 2013 | By Robert Faturechi and Seema Mehta
Paul Tanaka, the controversial former Los Angeles County undersheriff, is expected to announce Thursday that he's going to challenge his old boss in next year's election, according to a source close to Tanaka. He is scheduled to make an announcement “regarding the upcoming election for Los Angeles County sheriff” Thursday morning in Griffith Park. The source close to Tanaka, who asked to remain anonymous before the official announcement, said that the morning press conference will coincide with Tanaka's filing of his election paperwork.
August 2, 2013 | By Paige St. John
The prospect of seeing thousands of California prisoners released to the streets of Los Angeles, or even landing in the Los Angeles County jail, disturbs Sheriff Lee Baca. "We are managing ... but we are at our capacity," said Baca's spokesman, Steve Whitmore. "The sheriff believes that we cannot take any more state prisoners. ... Enough is enough. " The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday rejected a request by Gov. Jerry Brown to delay a federal court order requiring California to reduce the state's inmate population by 9,600 prisoners.
July 25, 2013 | By Joel Rubin and Robert Faturechi
A gathering attended by several hundred sheriff's deputies and staff members from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department went badly awry when a comedian unleashed a stand-up routine filled with racist and sexually explicit humor, people in attendance said. Many in the crowd at the Sheriff's Day Luncheon on Wednesday, estimated to be between 600 and 700 people, were dressed in their uniforms, including Sheriff Lee Baca, who thanked comedian Edwin San Juan with a plaque after the off-color performance.
July 20, 2013 | Steve Lopez
L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca has no medical background, but he is the de facto administrator of what he calls "the nation's largest mental hospital. " "This is the system," he said, drawing a box on a piece of paper in his Monterey Park office last week. Judges, prosecutors and law enforcement officials each have a role in deciding what to do with someone who has a mental illness and is accused of a crime, Baca said. But they decide each case in isolation, missing a broader concern - thousands of sick people get locked up, with no coherent plan for helping them get better.
June 11, 2013 | By Robert Faturechi and Andrew Blankstein, Los Angeles Times
Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell announced Tuesday evening that he will not be challenging Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca in next year's election. McDonnell, a well-respected former Los Angeles police official, had been considering running for several months. If he had, he would have been the most formidable opponent to challenge Baca since Baca became sheriff about 15 years ago. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, McDonnell said he made his decision over the weekend, after considering how much time it would take to compete for campaign donations against an incumbent.
May 15, 2013 | By Robert Faturechi
Another challenger has joined the race to unseat Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca. Patrick Gomez - a newly retired sheriff's lieutenant who has twice run for sheriff unsuccessfully - announced his candidacy this week. The three-decade department veteran joins a little-known LAPD detective, who has also said he's running. The most formidable potential challengers - Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell and Baca's outgoing top aide, Paul Tanaka - have said they're interested in running but haven't made final decisions about the 2014 race.
April 18, 2013 | By Laura J. Nelson
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department on Thursday named replacements for three transit department supervisors who were demoted in connection with an alleged cheating scandal. Sheriff Lee Baca appointed Ronene Anda, a 29-year Sheriff's Department veteran, as acting commander of the Transit Services Bureau. Anda replaces Cmdr. Pat Jordan. The sheriff also replaced two captains who reported to Jordon. “This happened fairly suddenly,” said Marc Littman, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which holds an $80-million contract with the transit bureau to protect county buses and rail.
April 15, 2013 | By Andrew Blankstein
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department will continue to respond to inquiries about incidents about false reports of emergencies but would not publicize them as so-called "swatting incidents," a department spokesman said Monday. The statement by Steve Whitmore, spokesman for Sheriff Lee Baca, came several days after the Los Angeles Police Department took the unusual step of announcing it would no longer acknowledge such incidents through news releases. The LAPD told news organizations to make public records requests about specific addresses.
April 3, 2013 | By Richard Winton
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is investigating a racially charged melee involving as many as 62 inmates that erupted Wednesday at the Twin Towers Jail in downtown Los Angeles. A Sheriff's Department spokesman said charges could be filed after the investigation is completed. The brawl between Latino and black inmates broke out at 12:10 p.m in the third-floor recreation area of Tower 1 and was quelled in about 90 seconds after deputies deployed sting balls and gas, sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said.
April 3, 2013 | Patt Morrison
The Los Angeles County jail system is, in a way, two systems. There's the one Sheriff Lee Baca says he yearns for, a place where you do your time but also get help, a place enriched with educational and mental health programs. And there's the one under scrutiny by the FBI, a federal grand jury and others over allegations of brutality and mismanagement. Terri McDonald is now in charge of them both. After a quarter-century in the state prisons, from prison guard to manager of the massive "realignment" of prisoners, McDonald will be opening the investigatory and disciplinary books on the jail, with an eye to realigning it. In your new job, do you have the authority not just to make recommendations but to carry them out ?
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