Police Commission to discuss LAPD event with ex-Mexican Mafia member
Los Angeles police commissioners are expected to discuss Tuesday their inspector general’s investigation into a controversial private meeting the LAPD arranged between an elite group of business executives and a former shot-caller for the Mexican Mafia.
The inspector general’s report, which was released Friday, is scheduled for discussion at the 9:30 a.m. Police Commission meeting.
The report offered new details about the Jan. 28 event, revealing that department officials spent weeks — and $22,000 — arranging for Rene “Boxer” Enriquez to speak to members of the Young Presidents’ Organization at the group’s request. Although the lecture was presented to Chief Charlie Beck as a “law enforcement training event” designed primarily for local authorities, the report said, the meeting was attended by about 150 YPO members and only 14 police officials.
Inspector General Alex Bustamante’s report also raised questions of whether the LAPD had the proper court authority to remove Enriquez from an undisclosed detention facility and take him to the meeting in downtown L.A.
Enriquez, 52, is serving a life prison sentence for two murders he committed in 1989. He has become a law enforcement darling since leaving the notorious prison gang more than a decade ago, writing books, helping teach a college course and lecturing at law enforcement conferences.
Bustamante’s report was the latest criticism over the department’s handling of Enriquez’s talk, which had already been denounced by police commissioners and Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office.
In response to the report, Beck initiated a personnel complaint investigation, the LAPD announced Friday.
A source familiar with the situation said a high-ranking department official would be a focus of the inquiry: Deputy Chief Michael Downing, a well-regarded 32-year LAPD veteran who heads the counter-terrorism and special operations bureau.
Downing declined Friday to comment on the report and investigation. His attorney said only that they were “looking forward to Tuesday,” when the report would be presented to the Police Commission.
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