Mayor of Compton Aja Brown is calling for an investigation into a sheriff’s deputy’s claims that there is a secret gang existing within the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department that celebrates terrorizing and shooting civilians.
Deputy Art Gonzalez first blew the whistle on the alleged group — who call themselves the “Executioners.” Gonzalez says the group of sheriff’s deputies control a patrol station in Compton, have matching tattoos, celebrate killing citizens while on the job, set illegal arrest quotas and intimidated him after he reported one of the group members for beating up a fellow deputy.
“Deputy Gonzalez, he’s afraid for his safety right now as he should be,” attorney Alan Romero told Eyewitness News. “This is a violent gang, you know — violence, shootings, beatings.”
Mayor Brown and other city leaders called for a federal and state civl rights investigation into the department earlier this week. Brown described her own aggressive experience with deputies during a traffic stop last June.
“I rolled my window down and asked why I was being pulled over. Within seconds, almost seven to nine sheriff deputy vehicles descended upon the scene,” Brown recalled of the incident at a press conference. She said that deputies claimed she had run a red light, which she denies.
“They ordered me out of my vehicle and they asked me to put my hands on top of the police vehicle so they could search me as if I were a criminal. Mind you, I was accompanied by my husband and my infant daughter in the back seat. I did not look like someone that is trafficking drugs,” she continued.
After finding no drugs, deputies initially issued Brown a traffic ticket, but later took it back after realizing she was the mayor. Brown filed a complained with the LASD but still has not received an answer. Other community members and business leaders also detailed their hostile interactions with sheriff’s deputies during the conference.
“They terrorize the community and then they cover their tracks,” she said. “It is unacceptable, we will not take this.”
Brown and Compton city leaders plan to call on U.S. Attorney General William Barr and California Attorney General Xavier Becerra to request a civil rights investigation into deputies at the Compton patrol station. They are also in talks of ending their contract with the sheriff’s department. During Tuesday’s (Aug. 4) press conference, Mayor Brown revealed that the city of Compton has a $22 million per year contract with the LASD.
“We demand justice from the Compton sheriffs and we will no longer continue to pay you $22 million to terrorize this community,” she said.
The sheriff’s department has responded to claims of the “Executioners” gang.
“We are aware of the allegations regarding Compton Station and have launched multiple investigations,” a statement from the LASD read. “Early on, the Sheriff invited the Federal Bureau of Investigation to conduct their own investigation and information is actively being shared with them.”
See a snippet from Brown’s press conference via ABC News below.
Compton Mayor @AjaLBrown is sharing her harrowing experience of being treated "as if I were a criminal" during a traffic stop by LA County deputies. Her account comes amid allegations that a deputy gang known as the "Executioners" rules the Compton station https://t.co/g2AV8LcpRX pic.twitter.com/esTIOrRmVy— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) August 5, 2020