Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Los Angeles judge drops Hollywood drug case after video contradicts police testimony
In echoes of Rampart scandal, defense attorney says officers planted cocaine on man accused of being a gang member. On surveillance tape produced at trial, one officer tells another: 'Be creative in your writing.'
A Los Angeles judge abruptly ended a trial and exonerated a man of possessing cocaine Monday after a courtroom confrontation in which a defense attorney produced a surprise video of his client's arrest that sharply contradicted the testimony of two police officers.
Superior Court Judge Monica Bachner dismissed charges against Guillermo Alarcon Jr., a grocery store worker, after prosecutors reviewed the tape and acknowledged that it was inconsistent with the officers' sworn testimony.