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Indybay Feature
Wed Sep 21 2016 (Updated 09/25/16)
East Bay Cops Charged with Sex Crimes and Corruption
Wed Sep 21 2016 (Updated 09/25/16)
Media Exposure Leads to Largest Number of Area Police Criminally Charged in Recent History
Recent reporting led by Darwin BondGraham and Ali Winston at the East Bay Express exposed widespread crimes, corruption, and coverups in the Oakland police department. As more and more came to light about Oakland police sexually abusing and trafficking a teenage girl since she was a minor, with other media outlets digging in as well, the fallout quickly snowballed. It became apparent the trafficking of the teenager spread across multiple Bay Area police departments. In response, community activists issued demands including the removal of Mayor Libby Schaaf. A steady drumbeat of protests turned up on OPD's doorstep. With such disturbing police behavior regularly highlighted on television, the calls for accountability at OPD came from all quarters. Mayor Schaaf was forced to acknowledge the seriousness of the problems in her police department, leading to the suspension of multiple cops and the dismissal of several police chiefs. In this extraordinary environment, with the avalanche of known police crimes falling all around her, it was clearly untenable for DA O'Malley to do nothing.

The first charges brought by O'Malley were on September 16, against Livermore police officer Dan Black, who quit the day before O'Malley publicly announced charges were coming, and Oakland sergeant LeRoy Johnson, who retired earlier this year. Black is charged with two counts of engaging in an act of prostitution, two counts of lewd acts in public, and one count of providing alcohol to a minor. Johnson is charged with one count of failing to report sexual misconduct concerning a minor. On September 18, former Contra Costa County sheriff’s deputy Ricardo Perez, who recently resigned, and Oakland officer Giovanni LoVerde, still with OPD, were each charged with felony oral copulation with a minor. Oakland cop Brian Bunton, also still with OPD, was charged with one count of felony conspiracy to obstruct justice and one misdemeanor charge of engaging in an act of prostitution. Yet to be charged are OPD's Terryl Smith, who resigned in May, and Warit Uttapa, who is still employed by OPD

Read More: Tip of the Iceberg: East Bay Cops Charged with Sex Crimes and Corruption | Bay Area police re-victimize teenager in cop sexual abuse scandal | video#ByeLibby | audioCat Brooks, Darwin BondGraham and Ali Winston speak about Oakland police criminal culture | audiophotoOakland Community: OPD Is Rotten to Its Core and Libby’s Got to Go | photoOakland Police Headquarters Banner Hang: OPD Guilty of Human Trafficking & Statutory Rape | audioDarwin BondGraham & Ali Winston Discuss Their Oakland Police Investigation, Firing of Sean Whent | videoCat Brooks at OPD headquarters protest | photoOakland Police Rocked by One Scandal After Another

Related Features: Hotline and Legal Advice Ready for Oakland Police Whistleblowers | Oakland Freedom Now Actions Include Lock Down at OPOA & OPD Headquarters, Children's March | New Wave of Black Lives Matter Protests Nationwide
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