Thursday, January 12, 2012

Woman threatens bus passengers, force was used, taken to mental observation From Bail Bondsman In Lakewood

On Monday, January 9, 2012, at approximately 5:19 PM, Lakewood Sheriff’s Station deputies received a call of a disturbance at a bus stop located at Artesia Boulevard and Lakewood Boulevard in the city of Bellflower.

The called stated a “Female White, 40 years old, wearing a white sweatshirt”, was causing a disturbance at the bus stop and was threatening awaiting passengers with violence. The caller’s comments included:

“…She is trying to pick a fight on anybody. She almost hit an old man…she seems like she got out of prison… I’ll beat up all you guys…there‘s some ladies here also and we, we’re trying to stay away from her.. and she is trying to pick a fight with anybody...She’s on the bus with us, oh my God…”

The caller said the disturbing party then boarded MTA Bus #266, along with other citizens and continued northbound on Lakewood Boulevard. The caller was also on the bus.

Lakewood Sheriff’s Station deputies were dispatched to the call and stopped the bus northbound on Lakewood Boulevard at Alondra Boulevard in Bellflower.

Deputies boarded the bus and made contact with the disturbing party, a 41-year old woman. The deputies immediately recognized her as an individual who had a history of assaulting deputies and had a propensity for violence.

Deputies said they requested the woman to exit the bus, but she refused, began shouting profanities at them, and threatened to assault them. The deputies stated that a use of force was necessary because she was aggressive. One deputy used an elbow strike that caused her to fall on a nearby seat. Deputies were able to gain control of her and handcuffed her without further incident.

She was transported to an undisclosed hospital, where she was examined by medical professionals. Medical professionals said they did not see any visible sign of injury as a result of the use of force.

She continued to display a combative behavior toward medical staff. She was admitted to the hospital for a 72-hour mental observation hold, under the authority of 5150 of the California State Welfare and Institutions Code. She was not arrested.

She has four prior convictions for assaulting peace officers.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca said he was disturbed by the incident. He confirmed it was his understanding the woman was homeless and had a history of mental problems. "She's noted for having verbal conflicts with people in the community, and she's been noted also to get in verbal conflicts with law enforcement," said Sheriff Baca. "And she's assaulted on several occasions law enforcement officers."

"I think I have an obligation to understand what this lady's plight is. And I have a greater obligation to make sure she's just not spending all this time in jail and then when she gets out she's back on the street," Sheriff Baca said.

The use of force and manner in which this incident was handled is under investigation to determine the full facts of what occurred. The investigation will include oversight by the Office of Independent Review.

A tape of the original 9-1-1 call was released to the news media.

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