Is LA Sheriff’s Department digging up dirt on Villanueva’s rivals? Watchdog group asks state to investigate

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In 2016, the LA County Board of Supervisors created a Civilian Oversight Commission to be a watchdog on the LA County Sheriff’s Department (LASD). Last week, that commission asked California Attorney General Rob Bonta to investigate possible illegal activity by the LASD.

At issue is a unit within the LASD known as the Civil Rights and Public Integrity Detail. Deputies in that unit have reportedly been pursuing criminal investigations into Sheriff Alex Villanueva’s opponents and critics, including LA County Inspector General Max Huntsman.

The commission subpoenaed the sheriff to appear at its meeting last week to answer questions about the unit, but he refused.



  • Priscilla Ocen - Chair, LA Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission; professor of law, Loyola Law School