The L.A.P.D. Blues

In another blow to the city's police, three cops are convicted of going too far in the war against gangs

The cops in the anti-gang unit in Los Angeles' Rampart division had a motto: "We intimidate those who intimidate others." They worked the city's most violent neighborhoods, met firepower with firepower and succeeded in bringing gang-related crimes down 60% from 1992 to 1999. But the unit has been roiled by charges that its Dirty Harry tactics went too far, and last week a jury finally called it to account. In the first of what may be a series of trials, three Rampart officers were found guilty of conspiracy to obstruct justice by planting evidence and framing gang members. A fourth was...

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