Key Evidence In Anaheim Police Murder Cases Keeps Getting Mysteriously Destroyed

Josue Rivas/OC Weekly
Sgt. Daron Wyatt (right) during a 2014 anti-brutality protest outside Anaheim Police headquarters

With a major, cold-case homicide of a law-enforcement officer unsolved and one of the accused killers awaiting trial in February 2013, Anaheim Police Department (APD) Sergeant Elizabeth Faria would have had you believe she purposefully but innocently destroyed interrogation recordings of Rafael Miranda, who says APD beat a false confession out of him.

Faria's explanation is golly-gee simple: APD has an annual budget in the tens of millions of dollars, but there's purportedly a dire shortage of computer hard-drive space. She wanted to free up storage for future files, and nobody internally protested, so--allegedly without even a cursory review to see what evidence she was permanently deleting from a computer devoted to murders--Faria hit the delete button.

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Two Lady Teachers Plead Not Guilty in Sex-Booze-Cocaine Beach Party with Boys

Courtesy of Orange County Sheriff's Department
Melody Suzanne Lippert and Michelle Louise Ghirelli pleaded not guilty today.
UPDATE NO. 2, MARCH 4, 1:32 P.M.: Melody Suzanne Lippert and Michelle Louise Ghirelli pleaded not guilty today to felony sex charges. Bail was set at $50,000 for Ghirelli and $20,000 for Lippert, and both are due back in court April 15 for a hearing on a defense motion seeking records from the school district investigation.

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Sexually Violent Predator Wants California Officials To Let Him Move To Jamaica

California Attorney General's Office
Samuels' public, Megan's Law warning entry
Rapist Dougal Samuels has a beef with California and the U.S. Attorney General because he's not being deported to Jamaica.

Calling himself a member of a "politically unpopular group," Samuels (a.k.a. Samuals, he oddly uses both spellings) wants to leave as soon as possible, but officials here consider him so special they refuse to honor the wish.

The serial rapist (with victims in Chicago, Laguna Beach, Costa Mesa and Sunset Beach) already served an 18-year prison sentence before the Orange County District Attorney's Office managed to label him a sexually violent predator (SVP) for the savage beatings he employed before and during his sexual assaults of women he usually met at bars.

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$60 Million Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed By Family Of Woman Killed By U.S. Postal Truck

Categories: Court

The surviving family of an elderly Trabuco Canyon woman run over and killed by a U.S. Postal truck in October 2013 has filed a $60 million wrongful death lawsuit inside Orange County's Ronald Reagan Federal Courthouse.

Mary Honda, 85, had been placing mail in her mailbox at her Teaberry Lane residence when postman Adam Stewart Rojas ran over her "several times" and caused serious trauma, according to the lawsuit.

The wounds included injuries to Honda's head, neck, shoulder, right forearm and ribs. She also suffered a laceration to her heart and hemorrhaging in her kidneys. She arrived at Mission Hospital alive but died several hours later. Orange County Sheriff's Department records show that Rojas called for aid after the accident.

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First House Detox of Newport Beach Hit with $10.25 mil Judgment in Bulimic Man's Death

Categories: Cha-Ching!, Court

Courtesy of Anna Menedjian/Sizemore Law Firm
Detox centers were accused of "buying and selling" young clients such as Brandon Jacques "like they were pieces of meat."
An Orange County Superior Court jury recently awarded more than $10.25 million to the parents of a young man who died while in the care of a Newport Beach drug and alcohol detox center, plaintiff attorneys announced.

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Elozona Ogbechie, Marcellus Carpenter and Phillip Anthony Gallegos Held for Pimping Girl

Categories: Court, Crime-iny

Photo by flickr user 710928003
Your room is ready.
Three young men from this area have been charged with pimping out a 15-year-old girl from the Midwest, according to authorities.

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Weekender Updater: OC Human Slave Master Learns His Fate; Plus, Much More Stuff

There are a few murderers in this weekend's update of stories we've covered in the past, as well as sentences in the attempted murder of an ex-boyfriend, an Orange County human slavery ring and a disgusting molestation case involving foster parents. Also find pleas in a fatal explosion at a plastics plant, and one former OC state senator's lawsuit moving forward and another's dying on the vine.

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Larry Agran Gives Middle Finger To Deposition Subpoena On Great Park Shenanigans

Agran: It's not illegal when, uhhh, a defeated councilman does it
It's not surprising that Larry Agran would want to avoid answering questions under oath about how his Democrat council majority in Irvine spent more than $200 million without building a single, major feature at the proposed Orange County Great Park.

But it is fascinating that Agran, who has a California law license and was a 1992 presidential candidate, thinks he can ignore a lawfully issued subpoena that compelled his presence Wednesday for a deposition in the city's ongoing investigation into Great Park shenanigans.

The man who voters booted out of office in November failed to show up at the offices of Anthony R. Taylor, the Aleshire & Wynder attorney who is conducting the probe.

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Jury Deadlocks on Whether Gang Members Knowingly Shot at Anaheim Cops

Covarrubias, Martinez and Sanchez

Time was when the Orange County District Attorney's office could trot cholos in front of a jury of mostly middle-aged gabachas, claim said cholos produced all sorts of crimes against cops, and win verdict after verdict. But we don't live in that Orange County anymore, Toto.

An Orange County jury returned surprising verdicts yesterday in the trial of three Anaheim gang members accused of trying to purposefully kill cops. Andrew Sanchez, Jordy Martinez and Juan Covarrubias were found not guilty of conspiring to commit murder and not convicted of attempted murder of police when they rolled up on officers in an unmarked Chevy Impala on June 1, 2012 and began firing.

The DA claimed that the three knew who they were shooting at that day; barrio gossip always maintained that the undercovers essentially entrapped them into the gunfight; defense lawyers merely maintained that Sanchez, Martinez, and Covarrubias were firing because they felt threatened. Amazingly, the jury sided more with the three than it did the po-po.

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Motel Families Win Some Relief From Costa Mesa's Eviction Ordinance

Categories: Court

Not exactly a jungle gym
Families have not won the legal war against a Costa Mesa ordinance that bars them from staying in city motels after 30 days, but they did win some relief pending the outcome of their trial.

Orange County Superior Court Judge Sheila Fell on Wednesday issued a preliminary injunction enjoining the city up through trial from evicting any current motel residents under the ordinance without first complying with the California Relocation Assistance Act, which requires counseling and financial assistance with any forced relocation, among other things.

The families' lawyers from Costa Mesa firm Haynes and Boone, Santa Ana-based pro bono law firm Public Law Center and the Los Angeles-based Western Center on Law and Poverty have sued the City of Costa Mesa on ground that the ordinance the City Council in August 2014 unfairly targets the poor.

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