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After Contempt Of Court Threat, Sheriff Testifies At Oversight Panel

A screenshot of Thursday's Civilian Oversight Commission meeting. (Facebook Live screenshot)
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The last time L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva testified before the Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission was in July 2019. After a judge told him to honor a subpoena to testify or explain why he shouldn't be held in contempt of court, the sheriff appeared at Thursday's oversight panel meeting.

The virtual gathering marked a rare moment of comity in a tempestuous relationship.

In October, the Commission called on Villanueva to resign, citing his alleged failure to rein in "violent deputy cliques or gangs" operating in the Compton and East L.A. stations, his alleged attempts to block efforts to "ensure independent oversight of deputy-involved shooting investigations," among several other complaints.

The sheriff's hour-long testimony Thursday focused on deputy cliques. He said his department has made it "very, very clear" to deputies that the days of cliques are over.

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But some commission members pushed back, questioning whether Villanueva has done enough.


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