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Dozens Join Lawsuit Against LAPD

October 10, 2000

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ About 50 current and former Los Angeles police officers have joined 41 others in a lawsuit alleging they were subjected to harassment and retaliation for reporting police misconduct.

Attorney Bradley C. Gage, who announced the additions to the lawsuit on Monday, said misconduct occurred throughout the 9,300-officer department, not just in the scandal-ridden Rampart Division.

A corruption case in that division has led to criminal charges against five officers accused of framing innocent people.

``This lawsuit demonstrates that Chief (Bernard) Parks’ claim that corruption existed only within the Rampart Division is untrue,″ he said.

The original lawsuit, filed in August, named the department, Parks, the city and several high-ranking officials as defendants. It seeks $100 million in collective damages, an injunction prohibiting police officials from mistreating officers who report inappropriate behavior and the reinstatement of about 300 officers who Gage claims were wrongly fired.

The LAPD would not comment because the lawsuit is pending, said Officer Don Cox, a department spokesman.

A hearing is scheduled for Nov. 28 in Los Angeles County Superior Court to determine if the lawsuit should become a class action.

Retired detective Cheryl Dorsey, one of three officers who attended Monday’s news conference to announce the additions to the lawsuit, said she was harassed after reporting sexual harassment by her commanding officer in another division.

``Within three days of making that report, I started noticing all my cases were being scrutinized,″ she said. ``My casework had never been questioned so much before.″

She eventually was granted a transfer, but she said the harassment continued.

About half the plaintiffs are still on the force. Others quit, were fired or say they were forced out.

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