We’re not against the police. We’re not against the police department, but we are against police who commit misconduct (and those who help cover it up).
When last we spoke of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Boxergate scandal, Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck and Deputy Chief Michael Downing were in the middle of a public pissing match over who was to blame and who knew what. The first round went to Beck who announced the minute the media came a knocking that he’d initiated a personnel complaint investigation against Downing. The second round went to Downing who quick fast and in a hurry lawyered up and sent his lawyer down to the police commission meeting to remind everyone within earshot about not discussing a personnel matter in public and to follow the law. That made everyone shut up really quick.
Since then though there’s been a lot of mumblings and rumors going on about whether or not Los Angeles County District Jackie Lacey and her Justice System Integrity Division (or squad as I like to call them) are looking into Boxergate.
By now you should all be aware of the Boxergate scandal—but in case you’re not up on game, here’s a short recap.
Someone thought it would be a great idea for the LAPD to utilize police resources and taxpayer money to essentially host the January membership meeting of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) while simultaneously providing an opportunity for ex-Mexican Mafia convicted hitman turned informant Rene “Boxer” Enriquez to talk about his life and sign copies of a book written about him.
The event took place back on Jan. 28 at a place called The Reserve in downtown Los Angeles near 6th and Spring streets. And while the LAPD tried to spin it in the media as a meeting to educate local authorities and private sector tycoons about the workings of a “transnational criminal enterprise,” we have since learned (in my best impression of Maury Povich), that was a lie—or as the department likes to say, false and misleading information.
The summary I got from those in attendance was that it was basically a YPO membership meeting with a special guest star, Boxer, courtesy of the LAPD.
The event featured valet parking, waiters, cocktails, appetizers, a buffet, a bar and even a stage for the guest of honor. Boxer was free to sign copies of the book written about him. He was situated right next to the bar. I still haven’t been able to get confirmation on whether or not he actually partook in the consumption of alcoholic beverages but if he did, that wouldn’t surprise me either.
Boxer was escorted into downtown Los Angeles like he was a visiting president complete with LAPD air support up above keeping a watchful eye. I can tell you that this was a huge production at the taxpayer’s expense and a huge waste of resources in a city with soaring crime rates.
And while the department flip-flopped on their excuse saying that this was some sort of training event for local authorities, it was already proven that the majority of the people in the room belonged to the Young Presidents’ Organization and not to law enforcement.
Anyway, several months later saw a nasty (yet quite entertaining) public battle brewing between Deputy Chief Michael Downing and Chief Charlie Beck—the one I eluded to at the beginning of this post.
This came about after Inspector General Alex Bustamante released a scathing report that basically said the department lied about the who the event was for and most intriguing of all questioned if the LAPD had the proper court authority to remove Enriquez from the detention facility where he was being held
In response to the report, Beck hurried up and initiated a personnel complaint investigation against Downing who hurried up and called his lawyer and it was on and poppin’ after that. It was so on that I took a bag of popcorn to the weekly meeting of the police commission so that I could watch it all unfold for myself. I was not disappointed.
Let me tell you, Boxergate is far from over and there are loud whispers of a criminal investigation and possible grand jury.
It would make sense and be the most logical thing to do, especially given the fact that it’s already been proven that the department lied to the public about the event and pretty much continues to do so. An accurate accounting of the money that was spent still needs to be put forth as well as the truth about whether or not the department broke the law in removing Boxer on an expired writ to entertain a bunch of rich folks for an evening.
That part about not having property authority to remove Enriquez is really going to come into play.
This all stems from an April 10, 2012 writ signed by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Ronald Rose who I gather was under the impression that the LAPD was using Enriquez for an investigation. Judge Rose authorized Enriquez to be removed from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation into the custody of LAPD Detectives Frank Flores and Hector Diaz. The LAPD was to be responsible for Boxer’s housing while he was helping in the completion of an “investigation” and then the department was supposed to return him into the custody of the CDCR.
The Inspector General’s report detailed how the writ they used for the YPO event had expired November 13, 2012.
I can tell you that nowhere in the judge’s orders did it say that Boxer Enriquez could, should or would headline an event for wealthy philanthropists.
And even though there are alleged orders to kill Boxer on sight from the Mexican Mafia, this wasn’t the first time the LAPD transported, housed and used Boxer Enriquez for one of their outside of court events—this is just the first time they got caught.
Not to mention the cost of all of this. The Inspector General put it at about $22,000 but I can tell you it’s well beyond that and when those numbers are finally revealed heads might roll.
It’ll be interesting to see who takes the blame for this between Chief Beck, Deputy Chief Downing and Assistant Chief Michel Moore.
With any luck there will be subpoenas issued and indictments for all.