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Sheriff Baca

March 28, 2010 | By Jack Leonard
A program that Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca championed three years ago to sharply reduce the early release of jail inmates by placing as many as 2,000 additional offenders on electronic monitoring at home has failed to make a significant dent in the problem. When he first announced the initiative in 2007 and prodded the state Legislature to allow it, Baca touted it as a major step that would free jail space and allow the department to keep more-serious offenders behind bars longer.
December 10, 2013 | Steve Lopez
When I got to the fundraiser Monday night for L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca, I was told the press was not welcome. Why not? I wondered. You'd think Baca would want the world to know that, despite one debacle after another in his department - including the indictment of 18 current and former staffers earlier Monday for alleged beatings of inmates and other crimes - he still had supporters who were willing to be seen in public. The cost of Monday night's love-in, by the way, was $1,500 a ticket.
September 6, 2013 | By Sandra Hernandez
For nearly two years, the Department of Justice has been conducting a criminal probe into allegations of abuse and violence in the Los Angeles County jails. On Thursday, the Justice Department informed Sheriff Lee Baca and the county that it is opening a second investigation that will examine whether sheriff's deputies engaged in a pattern of excessive force, and whether the department failed to implement broad reforms that the sheriff agreed to in 2002 involving mentally ill inmates.
January 13, 2014 | By Robert Faturechi and Seema Mehta
Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell entered the race to become Los Angeles County's sheriff on Monday, boasting a number of heavyweight endorsements including the county's current and former district attorneys. McDonnell, who served as second in command to Los Angeles Police Chief William J. Bratton before moving to Long Beach, enters an increasingly crowded field seeking to replace Lee Baca, who last week made the surprise announcement that he would end his reelection campaign and retire at the end of the month.
June 12, 2007 | Stuart Pfeifer and Jack Leonard, Times Staff Writers
A former Los Angeles County employee launched a campaign Monday to recall Sheriff Lee Baca, citing last week's early release of Paris Hilton as an example of gross mismanagement of the nation's largest Sheriff's Department. Andrew Ahlering conceded that recalling Baca would be costly and time-consuming but said the public frenzy about Hilton's release could generate the necessary interest.
February 25, 2009 | Richard Winton and Garrett Therolf
Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca was in talks Tuesday with court officials to determine whether reducing bail for nonviolent offenders would cut jail overcrowding, discussions that came a day after he threatened to close the Men's Central Jail if hit with steep budget cuts. Baca was examining the current bail schedule for nonviolent offenders, spokesman Steve Whitmore said.
December 1, 2011 | By Robert Faturechi and Jack Leonard, Los Angeles Times
A top commander in Los Angeles County's jail system said he warned Sheriff Lee Baca and other senior officials last year about deputies using excessive force against inmates but was ignored until the problems grew into a public scandal. In an interview with The Times, Robert Olmsted said he tried to raise red flags about shoddy investigations that allowed deputies to escape scrutiny for using force. He also voiced concern about deputies forming aggressive cliques. He alleged that two top officials rebuffed him, telling him it was impossible to change the deputy culture in the downtown L.A. lockup, an antiquated facility that houses some of the county's most dangerous inmates.
May 10, 2011
Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca can't seem to say no, at least to gifts. As The Times recently reported, Baca has accepted more than $120,000 worth of freebies since taking office in 1998 — including 131 free rounds of golf, tickets to 42 basketball games and concerts, and 22 bottles of wine and liquor. Nearly $45,000 worth was given to him between 2007 and 2009. That's more golf, wine and tickets than the rest of California's 57 sheriffs combined accepted during the same period.
October 24, 2013 | By Seema Mehta
Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department officials who have backed a rival of Sheriff Lee Baca in next year's election claim they are being retaliated against with reassignments to distant locales or less desirable duties, according to interviews and documents. One, Capt. Louis Duran, has filed a complaint against Baca with the state Department of Fair Employment and Housing, a precursor to a possible lawsuit. Of the nine captains who have publicly backed former Undersheriff Paul Tanaka in his bid to replace Baca, four were transferred to other jobs earlier this month, according to documents obtained by the Times.
October 17, 2013 | By Abby Sewell and Robert Faturechi
A federal jury has found Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca personally liable in a case involving abuse of an inmate in the Men's Central Jail, meaning the sheriff could be required to pay $100,000 out of pocket. It is the first time a jury has held Baca personally at fault in a deputy use-of-force case. Sheriff's officials called the verdict a "huge mistake" and said they would appeal. Plaintiff Tyler Willis filed a federal civil rights lawsuit in October 2010 against L.A. County and several deputies and sheriff's officials, alleging that deputies severely beat him in 2009 while he was a 23-year-old inmate awaiting trial on charges of lewd acts with a child.
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