LA County Jail LASD Sheriff Lee Baca

Prez of Law Enforcement Union Writes That Baca Should Fix Problems in LASD, Instead of Hunting Department’s Leakers to Media

Stop trying to find those Sheriff’s Department insiders who are leaking to WitnessLA and other media outlets,
and focus on fixing the problems of “Corruption, abuses of power and ‘codes of silence'” within the department itself, writes PPOA president, Lt. Brian Moriguchi, in a new strongly worded message to Sheriff Lee Baca.

Moriguchi, the head of the board of directors of the PPOA (one of two primary employee unions for Los Angeles Sheriff’s department), wrote the essay—which mentions WitnessLA by name—as part of the President’s message in the January issue of Star & Shield, the PPOA’s monthly magazine.

Here are some clips from the essay:

The past several months have resulted in a barrage of attacks against LASD, from the allegations of deputy abuse in our jails to the corruption and “pay to play” allegations posted on the Internet at To some insiders, these allegations come as no big surprise as rumors of abuses of power by some individuals have circulated within the Department for many years. To other insiders, these allegations are nothing but disgruntled or former employees taking out their anger against the Sheriff ’s Department, or more succinctly, against certain people within the Sheriff ’s Department. Regardless of your position on this heated topic, what is unique is the shift to “release” the information through media channels instead of going through internal channels.

The PPOA prez then talks about how many LASD employees feel that when they try to handle department problems internally, they are met with “cover-ups.”

As a consequence of their “dissatisfaction with the internal process,” LASD deputies are turning to the media—and, in some cases, to lawsuits.

“So how do you put an end to the problem?” asks Moriguchi. His answer:

Sheriff Baca needs to look within, as tough as that may be, and fix the problem whereby employees do not believe things can be resolved internally. Corruption, abuses of power and “codes of silence” need to end before we can begin to rebuild this organization. If not addressed, the Department will be riddled with scandal, face government intervention (i.e., consent decrees and indictments) and take decades to rebuild its once formidable reputation, something none of us wants to see happen. We need to focus less on the leaks and more on the cause of our problems.

Then in another section of the magazine, the PPOA has an article that advises LASD employees as to how they can best protect themselves if they need to act as whistleblowers regarding misconduct within the department.

Here’s the rather interesting editor’s note that precedes the article;

This article was written at the request of PPOA. It is especially timely in view of the current issues affecting custody including WitnessLA reports and L.A. Times articles. If you have concerns about reporting misconduct or “whistleblowing” or want to speak with an attorney, please call PPOA at (323) 261-3010.

The full text of the essay may be found here, beginning on page 4. The whistleblower article starts on page 14.


  • “Fabulous” Floyd and and “Rocky J.” Remige over at ALADS need to slip PT a colon cleanser because he’s full of it. He does what he wants, promoting and placing his guys, then allows Leroy one or two picks. He plays to the deputies…Mr. macho crime fighter, rule breaker, tough guy, etc. Everbody but Leroy knows he’s been positioning himself to run for sheriff and set Leroy up for a vote of no confidence. But how do you run pay for play, and give your peeps the answers to the exam? It’s insulting and criminal. Why pay dues, just pay Paul.

  • Brian makes an honest attempt to get Leroy to evaluate what he has created, with some clarity. Mr Baca, you need to start listening to people who will tell you what you don’t really want to hear, but need to. I don’t claim to be any expert, but you have some serious, probably criminal, activity going on in your senior ranks, and it needs to be washed out. Maybe ask an honest senior member of another Department, like Mike Hillman, to evaluate what’s going on. If you don’t, the FBI will, and they won’t be nearly as positive as you can be on the impact to the Department. If the FBI gets ahead of you on this, the Department will suffer drastic restrictions, and may be reduced to being a second or third tier law enforcement agency in the United States. Do you really want that as your legacy? Of course, it may be already too late for you to move, and you should have seen it coming. I hope not, because I think the Department is too good to be tarnished in such a manner. It has a bright history of brave men and women that set new and high standards of behavior and performance. Don’t trod it down the path of political correctness, corruption, and the self absorbed “I got mine, so screw you all” mentality that we see now.

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