Claims #13545 & 13546 - Suicidal Person Hoax Call - July 22, 2019

PASADENA POLICE RESPOND TO ATTORNEY’S CLAIMS

PASADENA, Calif. – The City of Pasadena received two claims from an attorney asserting that the Constitutional Rights of two people were violated by Pasadena Police Officers.  The Pasadena Police Department is releasing officer body worn camera and a ‘911’ recording of the incident. The recordings detail what transpired on July 22, 2019 when the Police Department’s Communications Center received a call from a despondent male, threatening suicide after losing a large sum of money to an apparent scam.  The recordings can be accessed at the link provided below.

Pasadena Police Chief John E. Perez has issued the following statement:

Law enforcement has a duty and obligation to protect the public and serve those in need.  These duties often require immediate action for the preservation of life and it is my responsibility to assure the community that I hold myself and the members of the Pasadena Police Department, accountable for our performance and behavior.

In conjunction with the current demands for reform of police agencies, it is important the Pasadena Police Department share with the public as much information as legally possible regarding police performance.  In releasing information, it is imperative the public have a complete view of critical incidents to understand the dynamics in their entirety, rather than a limited view.  Change is never easy, but as we continue to work towards better policing practices, the benefit to all will be significant.

As has been the practice, the released recordings assisted in determining if there was reason to initiate a personnel investigation into the actions of any of the officers involved.  Had I or any member of his Command Staff found such reason, an investigation would have commenced.

This incident, which ultimately was determined to be a hoax call to the police department, involved a male caller who detailed how he had lost a significant amount of money and intended to commit suicide.  While talking with the department’s emergency dispatcher, the caller went into great detail as to how he was going to complete the act.  Officers responded and when they arrived, they forced entry into the residence to render aid, in an effort to preserve the suicidal subjects’ life; no one was located inside the residence. As the investigation progressed, officers sought available evidence inside to determine if the name of the suicidal subject matched the name of the resident(s) and attempt to locate a responsible party so that the residence could be secured.  After a limited search, documents were located inside that indicated the names were different and it eventually became apparent the call was a false emergency call for help, meant to mislead police.  The officers’ actions were consistent with departments’ policies and procedures for the purpose of preserving life.  While viewing and listening to the provided recordings, you will have the same information the dispatcher and officers had in order to determine whether the officers’ response was unfitting of the call for service.

It is incumbent that officers make every effort to save lives when feasible.  Officers took necessary steps in an attempt to prevent an individual from taking his own life.  Unfortunately, the caller did not have a clear understanding of the consequences and impact of his actions when he made the false report to the police department.

Additionally, the claim indicates an officer and the supervisor “manipulated their Body Worn Cameras (BWC)” during the search of the residence.  The supervisor and officer did turn off their BWC’s, as required by department policy, while discussing sensitive information, so as to prevent the recording of potentially private information related to the incident.

Finally, a claim was filed with the City by the homeowner to reimburse the costs associated with repair of the door damaged by officers when they forced entry into the residence.  This claim has already been paid by the City.

911 Call

 

PPD Radio

 

Officer #1 Body Worn Camera

 

Officer #2 Body Worn Camera

 

Officer #3 Body Worn Camera

 

Officer #2’s 2nd Body Worn Camera

 

Officer #3’s 2nd Body Worn Camera

 

Supervisor’s Body Worn Camera

 

Anyone with information about this case is encouraged to call Pasadena Police at (626)- 744-4241 or you may report information anonymously by calling "Crime Stoppers" by dialing (800) 222-TIPS (8477), use your smartphone by downloading the “P3 Tips” Mobile APP on Google play or the Apple App Store or by using the website http://lacrimestoppers.org.