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Allan Lobos

Summary of Rampart Scandal
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Allan Lobos was one of approximately 170 men and women wrongfully convicted because of misconduct uncovered during an investigation into corruption at the Los Angeles Police Department’s Rampart division.

Lobos, then 20 years old, was arrested on April 26, 1996 and charged with possession of a firearm by a felon. He pled guilty on May 2, 1996, and was sentenced to a year in jail and three years on probation.

On August 17, 1998, Officer Rafael Perez was charged with theft, possession of cocaine, and forgery. The jury deadlocked at his trial (with a majority voting for conviction) in December 1998. Police investigated further, and additional charges were filed against Perez. Just before his retrial on September 8, 1999, Perez pled guilty to eight drug charges and struck a deal with prosecutors. In exchange for a sentence of no more than five years in prison, he would cooperate with an investigation into the Rampart operations.

Perez began talking two days later. Over the next year, he met with investigators from the police department and the district attorney’s office 29 times and detailed alleged misconduct committed by himself and his fellow officers.

On October 15, 1999, Perez discussed the Lobos arrest – which took place after police broke up a party in a parking lot – with investigators. He said Officer Brian Liddy’s report was incorrect.

Liddy had written: “I directed Officer Perez, 26905, to the left front tire area of the blue Honda. Officer Perez recovered a .45 caliber pistol from the top of the left front tire. The pistol was loaded with a round in the chamber, the hammer back, and the safety off.”

Perez said it was another officer who told him about the weapon. While Liddy wrote that he had seen Lobos place the gun when police arrived at the scene, Perez said that wouldn’t have been possible. He said that the gun was found after police had already detained Lobos. If Liddy had seen Lobos place the gun near the car, Perez said, that area would have been searched immediately and the weapon found right away. But that didn’t happen, Perez said.

Lobos was interviewed by police on December 15, 1999. He said he was at the party in the parking lot when Liddy and Officer Paul Harper arrived. He saw an officer recover a gun from a car. At the police station, he was asked who owned the gun. He said he didn’t know, and then Liddy said he was going to jail for the weapon and rubbed it against his fingers.

The District Attorney for Los Angeles County filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus on January 31, 2000, and said it no longer had confidence in Lobos’s conviction. The writ was granted on February 1, 2000, and the charge was dismissed.

Liddy, Harper and Officer Eddie Ortiz were later charged with violating Lobos’s civil rights. They were acquitted at trial and filed lawsuits against the City of Los Angeles for malicious prosecution, which were settled in 2009 for $19 million.

More than 200 lawsuits were filed against the city by persons wrongfully convicted because of the Rampart misconduct or those who claimed they had been falsely arrested. Hernandez was one of the plaintiffs. His settlement is not publicly available. A 2007 said the city had paid out $75 million in settlements, but more recent reports put the figure at closer to $125 million.

– Ken Otterbourg

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Posting Date: 9/20/2021
Last Updated: 9/20/2021
State:California
County:Los Angeles
Most Serious Crime:Weapon Possession or Sale
Additional Convictions:
Reported Crime Date:1996
Convicted:1996
Exonerated:2000
Sentence:1 year
Race/Ethnicity:Hispanic
Sex:Male
Age at the date of reported crime:20
Contributing Factors:Perjury or False Accusation, Official Misconduct
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No