Police called to mansion party in Holmby Hills after mayor pledges stricter enforcement
Los Angeles police were dispatched to a wedding reception in the tony Holmby Hills area Wednesday night after receiving multiple noise complaints, hours after Mayor Eric Garcetti announced additional enforcement measures aimed at curbing large parties held in violation of coronavirus-related health orders.
Overhead footage broadcast by KABC-TV showed dozens of people gathered outside under a canopy of lights at a mansion in the 10000 block of Wyton Drive.
A number of guests could be seen dancing and posing for pictures. Most were not wearing masks.
However, a man identified only as a guest painted a different picture to KCBS-TV, telling the station that the gathering featured “social distancing, washing hands, temperatures, masks, elderly separated — everything was according to standard.”
At fraternity houses and Hollywood mansions, parties that defy public health orders are fueling a coronavirus surge in the young.
The crowd apparently dispersed after police arrived shortly before midnight, according to KCBS.
LAPD officials did not immediately provide additional details Thursday morning.
The party was the latest large-scale event to draw law enforcement’s attention despite L.A. County’s COVID-19 public health order, which forbids gatherings or parties of any size, public or private.
Early Tuesday, a massive and boisterous party on Mulholland Drive ended in gunfire, leaving one woman dead and four other people injured.
Such parties have alarmed health officials, who say that closely clustered crowds heighten the risk of spreading the coronavirus.
The city attorney’s office has said homeowners with a history of renting to partygoers could face criminal prosecution and six months in jail.
Officials also have expressed concern that, with bars and nightclubs closed, people may be increasingly holding private parties as a substitute.
Garcetti said Wednesday that “these large house parties have essentially become nightclubs in the hills” and often happen at homes that are vacant or used for short-term rentals.
He announced that, starting Friday night, if Los Angeles police officers respond to and verify that a large party is occurring at a property, and there’s evidence that the venue has repeatedly engaged in such behavior, the department will request that the city shut off water and power services to the property within 48 hours.
“The consequences of these large parties ripple far beyond just those parties,” Garcetti said. “They ripple throughout our entire community because the virus can quickly and easily spread.”
Times staff writers Leila Miller and Richard Winton and City News Service contributed to this report.
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