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Deputy Accused of Sex Assaults While on Duty

TIMES STAFF WRITER

A veteran sheriff’s deputy was charged Thursday with sexually assaulting three women after he pulled them over for fabricated traffic violations and forced them to drive to secluded places under threat of arrest, authorities said.

Deputy Lloyd Shoemaker, 33, who has worked as a patrol officer at the Temple City substation for most of his 10-year career, faces two counts of rape, one count of oral copulation and one charge of lewd conduct. He is expected to surrender to authorities today and be arraigned in Los Angeles Superior Court. Shoemaker is on leave but his pay will be suspended after the court hearing. If convicted of the crimes, he could serve up to 24 years in prison.

At a news conference in which the charges against Shoemaker were made public, Dist. Atty. Ira Reiner said the deputy “repeatedly abused his authority to force unwilling victims to have sex with him . . . while on duty, in uniform.”

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Neither Shoemaker nor his lawyer could not be reached for comment.

Shoemaker is the fourth deputy from the Temple City substation to be criminally charged in separate, unrelated cases in less than two months. About 200 deputies are assigned there. Authorities said the string of allegations has led officials to audit the substation’s operations and review training practices.

Shoemaker’s method of operation, Reiner said, “was to lie in wait for women--often at night--as they were leaving bars and restaurants.

“He would follow them, pull them over on trumped-up charges, convince them that they were about to be arrested and order them to remote locations while he followed in his patrol car.”

When safely out of public view, he said, Shoemaker would force the women into his patrol car and attack them.

The deputy’s pattern, Reiner said, was consistent, leading authorities to believe that he attacked other women who were too frightened to come forward.

Reiner noted that one of the women the deputy is accused of assaulting contacted authorities only two weeks ago after pondering for months what she should do. The third woman was found by Sheriff’s Department investigators after they pored through more than a year of Shoemaker’s field log entries looking for names of women he may have had contact with.

Sgt. Elaine Minnes, one of the investigators assigned to the case, said more than 30 women were interviewed in the investigation.

The incidents came to light in April, Minnes said, shortly after a 23-year-old El Monte woman was allegedly attacked by Shoemaker. The woman reportedly was persuaded by friends to come forward a few hours after the alleged attack.

Shoemaker pulled the woman over after she left a Duarte restaurant and falsely said her car had been used in two burglaries, Reiner said.

According to an affidavit filed to support a search for Shoemaker’s clothing, the woman asked not to be taken to jail.

“If I don’t take you to jail, what are you going to do for me?” Shoemaker replied, according to the document.

Minnes said the woman was first ordered to drive her car to a doughnut shop as the deputy followed in his patrol car. When they arrived, Shoemaker saw a security guard nearby. So instead of remaining, the deputy ordered her to drive to a secluded area near Legg Lake, where she was allegedly raped. Investigators later found traces of semen on the back seat of Shoemaker’s patrol car, according to court documents.

Another of the cases involves a 25-year-old woman who was allegedly raped by Shoemaker after she left a cocktail lounge in Pasadena on Dec. 15, 1990, according to Reiner. Investigators tracked her down using the field log.

The third woman fought Shoemaker off, he said. The deputy is charged with exposing himself. She came forward Oct. 9, Minnes said, only after seeing news reports about the April incident and watching television talk shows in which rape victims told their stories.

The allegations against Shoemaker are the latest in a string of accusations leveled against deputies at the Temple City substation.

Three other deputies are accused of stealing credit cards from motorists they encountered on traffic stops. In addition, 53 deputies from the substation are defendants in two major federal civil rights lawsuits.

In one of the lawsuits, 13 deputies were accused of viciously beating three Temple City men. That suit was settled Thursday for $925,000. In the other suit, 40 deputies are accused of vandalizing 14 houses to intimidate gang members.

“We are very concerned at the number of things going on at the Temple City station,” Chief Roy Brown said at Thursday’s news conference. Brown, who oversees field operations at eight substations including the one in Temple City, added: “I’ve looked at Temple City to determine if we’re doing something wrong and, frankly, we haven’t found anything.”

He said, however, that a new lieutenant was recently brought in to bolster supervisory personnel and that the substation is slated to be staffed with additional sergeants. No high-ranking personnel have been transferred out of the substation because of the allegations, he said.

NEW INFORMANT: A second deputy has become an informant in a narcotics probe. B3


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