oldschool CxC

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Culver City officer claims councilman interfered in arrest of sonAssociated Press
CULVER CITY, Calif. - The son of a city councilman was charged with felony drug possession after being pulled over by a police officer who alleges that the routine drug arrest was interrupted by the suspect's father.
Albert Vera, 39, was arrested Aug.7 by a police officer who stopped his pickup truck and found what appeared to be methamphetamine. Vera, whose father Albert M. Vera is a councilman, remains free on $20,000 bail. He is scheduled to appear in court later this month, said Jane Robison, spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.
Police Officer Heidi Keyantash who pulled over the younger Vera alleges in an internal memo to police Chief John Montanio that the councilman threatened her and interfered with her investigation. She said he "accused me of being 'out to get' his son and threatened me that, `Well, I'll get you! I promise, I'll get you.'"
The elder Vera denied any wrongdoing. He said his business is two blocks from the scene, and he went there after a customer said he saw the younger Vera surrounded by police.
"I went to see what happened. I didn't interfere at all" in the investigation, the councilman said.
Keyantash also said Montanio ordered her to omit reference to the councilman's actions at the crime scene from her report of the incident.
Lt. Carlos Reynosa, a spokesman for Montanio, said the department has done "nothing inappropriate in the handling of the Vera Jr. case." He said the chief welcomed an independent investigation "from the district attorney's office or any other investigative body designated by the mayor and the City Council."
City Councilman Alan Corlin called the allegations "extremely troubling."
"We need to get to the bottom as quickly as possible," Corlin said. "This is the kind of thing that can completely erode confidence in our city and in particular our Police Department."
The elder Vera was elected to the council in 1992 and reelected in 1996, serving two terms as mayor pro tem over that period. He left the City Council because of term limits, but was reelected after a two-year absence.

The Culver City city council has term limits? - RM

I guess they think you need a break from politics to help support your kid's drug habits. And hearing about this, it personally gives me more confidene in the CCPD. Previously I would have thought Vera Jr. would have received nothing more than a call home to papa. -SL


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