Police Abuse

An LAPD Cop Had Already Shot 3 People on the Job Before Beating the Crap out of Someone

Officer Frank A. Hernandez, who beat a suspect while his hands were behind his back, once shot an innocent bystander in the leg.

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A California police officer had already shot three people on the job before he was caught on video for beating up a suspect.

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) released a statement this week about the use-of-force incident which occurred on April 27. According to the statement, Officer Frank A. Hernandez and another officer responded to a trespassing call in the Hollenbeck area. The officers asked the suspected trespasser to leave the property.

A bystander's video shows the suspect standing with his hands behind his back just before Hernandez mercilessly beats him.

The suspect sustained "abrasions to his head and face" while Hernandez received injuries to his hand.

An internal affairs group for the police department is now investigating the incident and Hernandez was "assigned home."

LAPD Chief Michel Moore released his own statement on Tuesday, saying the incident was "clearly not consistent with the core values of the Los Angeles Police Department."

For Hernandez, however, the incident is but another mark in his record. Hernandez has been involved in not one, not two, but three shootings on the job.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the first shooting occurred in 1999 when Hernandez shot a robbery suspect.

The second occurred in 2008. Hernandez was pursuing a suspect who threatened officers with a firearm when he crossed paths with Joseph Wolf, who had nothing to do with the incident. Hernandez yelled at Wolf to stop. When he attempted to return to his home, since he was a bystander, Hernandez shot him in the leg. Wolf was charged with assault with a deadly weapon, but the only weapons found in his residence were two plastic toy guns. Wolf later accused the LAPD of fabricating charges, which were eventually dropped, to cover up the mistake.

The most recent shooting occurred in 2010. Manuel Jaminez Xum, a day laborer from Guatemala, was reportedly wielding a knife while drunk and threatening two women in the area. Officers ordered him to put the weapon down in English and Spanish. Hernandez shot him twice after he allegedly lunged towards him. Activists protested the shooting because they said Jaminez spoke K'iche', an indigenous Guatemalan language, and could not have possibly understood the commands.

As for repercussions, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office found each shooting justified. If Hernandez's recent behavior is truly inconsistent with the LAPD's values, as Moore stated, then the department ought to make sure he finally faces real consequences for his recurrent use of excessive force.

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  1. “and could not have possibly understood the commands.”

    Cops travel in pairs. One is assigned to yell “Don’t move!”, the other is assigned to yell “Put your hands up!”.
    No matter what language skills are involved, you are non-compliant and likely to get shot or beaten.

    General advice for anyone unarmed; if a guy with a gun starts yelling at you, put up you hands it will look better for you on the cell phone video.

    1. how the hell did he not get in hot water with the Wolf guy shooting? That makes no sense to me.

      1. What incentive did the LAPD have to discipline him?

        1. Disciplining him would make a dent in the recruiting of new recruits.

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      2. They arrested Wolf, therefore he was a legit suspect and the shooting was legit. That the DA dropped the charges because they were bogus is irrelevant.

        1. He wasn’t legit if they didn’t have reasonable suspicion.

          1. The DA isn’t in charge of PD disciplinary procedures.

            For those who are, arrest=reasonable suspicion.

      3. His name is H E R N A D E Z. Get it protected class in a protected organization. The only thing that would get him out of more criminal activities if he were a woman, trans, or both.

  2. “April 29, 1992, there were riots on the street…..

    1. tell me where were you.

      1. North Long Beach; AKA South Compton. I still have the VHS recordings of all the crazy shit going down.

      2. The lyric is April 26th.

        1. Correct but we’re all about accurate history here at Reason commentary.

  3. Hände hoch!
    Who, facing two officers with drawn guns, couldn’t figure that one out?

    1. exactly. Plus, he didn’t know ANY Spanish? the main language of Guatemala? Maybe they just didn’t give him time to react, but saying he didn’t deserve to be shot because he was a hipster who chose only to speak languages you’d never heard of is kinda stupid

      1. Whole lot of Indios in Guatemala. Even after the Army killed around 200,000 of them during various pacification campaigns. Lots of those only speak some variant of Mayan. It can be an incredibly rugged country, with very isolated parts.

        1. “Lots of those only speak some variant of Mayan. It can be an incredibly rugged country, with very isolated parts.”

          Next stop, LA!! It’s his God-given right or some shit, I suppose? Wrong place, wrong time, by his own choice. Drunk, violent and threatening, again, by his own choice.

          Dude gets a pass on that one. Still probably a shit cop though.

    2. Bullshit the guy didn’t know any Spanish. But of course, those protesting groups, following the flow chart of victimhood and protected class, come to the conclusion that the LAPD was negligent for not having a speaker of his indigenous language on the scene. (Of, presumably, every crime).

      BTW, did they explain how the cops were supposed to know this Xum’s language preferences?? Oh, right.

  4. “clearly not consistent with the core values of the Los Angeles Police Department.”

    Looked pretty consistent to me.

    1. The getting caught on video part.

      1. lol.
        +1, perceptive

  5. So, something that just occurred to me, what if the reason we’re seeing so much police violence lately is because they’re being told to unofficially by the departments? Hear me out.

    In Charleston after Hurricane Hugo, there was a huge issue with looting, there wasn’t enough space in the jails or enough cops to imprison every looter found, they were too busy trying to help with the recovery effort. So the chief of police Reuban Greenberg (first black CoP incidentally for Charleston) ordered his officers off the record to beat any looters they found until they were no longer capable of looting, and then move on.

    We know that they’re trying to keep people out of jail right now theoretically, so what if other departments are doing the same thing? No way to keep “criminals” locked up, so make it so they can’t continue to break the law?

    1. We’re seeing so much police violence right now because just being outside is cause enough for police interaction in a lot of places. Since some percentage of police interactions result in them needlessly beating the shit out of someone or shooting them, the increased number of interactions means an increased number of violent interactions.

      Put another way, you used to have to at least appear to have done something illegal before the police would come up to you, so your likelihood of having the shit beaten out of you by a cop was pretty small if you just didn’t look like you were doing “crimes”. Now the police can just approach anyone on the street because they aren’t wearing a mask or violating social distancing rules, so just being outside enters you in the police beating lottery.

      1. People would probably be safer moving to Mohave County AZ during this Covid-19 hysteria (Murder Hornet-Flu for the layperson). From what I’ve heard there is a pretty good chance you won’t be cop-beat’n to a blood pulp for not wearing a mask.

    2. “So the chief of police Reuban Greenberg (first black CoP incidentally for Charleston) ordered his officers off the record to beat any looters they found until they were no longer capable of looting, and then move on.

      We know that they’re trying to keep people out of jail right now theoretically, so what if other departments are doing the same thing? No way to keep “criminals” locked up, so make it so they can’t continue to break the law?”

      A problem with that—among the multitude—is you run the risk of police getting overzealous, and get something like the beating to death of Kelly Thomas: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Kelly_Thomas

      I know there’s official and unofficial methods of policing. The unofficial methods, at least here in Houston, sometimes involved officers throwing suspects off highway bridges into the bayou. Sometimes they forgot to take the cuffs off the guy, which makes it tough to swim. And hard to explain at a coroner’s inquest.

      Power something something absolutely corrupts.

      1. I agree, there are problems with that. And as far as I can tell, that was a one-off thing for Greenberg due to the circumstances, there aren’t any other stories of similar incidences and even that one is fairly unknown, I only heard about it while getting my CRMJ degree at the local military college (big cop school). Under him, Charleston’s department modernized and his term in office has been viewed in a pretty favorable light. Crime went down significantly under him, and since he stepped down Chucktown still doesn’t have the sort of racial friction a lot of other cities have. Charleston was one of the few cities that arrested an officer on their own accord BEFORE any public outcry after a suspicious shooting (Walter Scott). The cop incidentally got 20 years.

        I didn’t know that about Houston, that sounds like some messed up shit back from the 70s. Or like what the Canadian cops used to do to indians, dropping them a few miles outside of town without clothes in the middle of winter.

    3. We’re seeing so much police violence now because 1) they’re used to getting away with it and it’s practically a way of life for them and 2) cell phones.

  6. He doesn’t mind conflict, that’s for damn sure.

    Two of those shootings sound fine, from the evidence given. To hell with the activists: stop pointing knives at people while you’re drunk. From past experience here, I would want to know more about the shooting of Joseph Wolf before I condemn it.

    Davis’s description of it sounds really bad though. Criminal conduct by the officer. I’d want to see the rest of the story.

    Punching an already handcuffed guy in the back of the head is poor form.

    1. Yeah a couple of those shootings sound justified. If someone is coming at me with a knife I give 0 fucks what language they speak. Seems pretty unreasonable to expect the police to speak some obscure Guatamalan dialect.

      Shooting a robbery suspect is also justified in some circumstances, we don’t get enough of the story here to know whether that one was a good shoot or not.

      Punching a handcuffed person in the back of the head is going to need a real doozy of an explanation though.

  7. An LAPD Cop Had Already Shot 3 People on the Job Before Beating the Crap out of Someone

    It’s called a quota, people!!!

    1. “But for me, it was Tuesday.”

  8. Sounds like he was resisting, if you listen.

    1. The suspect may have mouthed off to the tough-guy cop, but he complied with orders to “turn around and put your hands behind your back” and his body language was in no way aggressive. The only time he didn’t obey the soon-to-be-ex-cop’s orders was when the cop had him in a bear hug and kept ordering him to get on the ground. The cop was so out of control at one point he put his hands on his head and almost jumped up and down. Do we really want cops to go off like this every time someone pops off? And note that the cop couldn’t have been upset at hearing the f-bomb, as he repeatedly used it in every form. Finally, as further proof that laws don’t apply to cops, note that none of the cops were wearing masks pursuant to the CA mask order of April 10, and few were wearing gloves.

  9. Has there been any analysis of the prevalence of violence complaints against a law enforcement department and the political parties in charge of the relevant political division?
    It may be that we get these stories from NY(D) & LA(D) a lot because that is where the media lies, but I do wonder – – – – – –

    1. Pretty sure the media lies everywhere.

  10. God damn white Hispanics. Always causing trouble.

  11. Do you have to question or just outright dismiss everything police chiefs say? Shouldn’t your article have been appropriately titled, Under Michel Moore’s chiefing, officer Hernandez now protects public by beating only one, instead of shooting three?

    “LAPD Chief Michel Moore released his own statement on Tuesday, saying the incident was “clearly not consistent with the core values of the Los Angeles Police Department.”

    “If (officer) Hernandez’s recent behavior is truly inconsistent with the LAPD’s values….” Why if???

    Did they beat him into a coma, then repeatedly yell, “stop resisting?”
    Did they claim they “feared for their lives,” so they handcuffed and then shot him?
    They did not… leading LAPD Chief Michel Moore to say “the incident was “clearly not consistent with the core values of the Los Angeles Police Department.”
    He told the truth. What more can we ask, is there anything more we should ask, of a police chief?

  12. “The suspect sustained “abrasions to his head and face” while Hernandez received injuries to his hand.”

    So the suspect also battered the fine, upstanding officer…

  13. The title is a little misleading. I thought he shot 3 people in separate incidents before lunch, then decided on an afternoon beat down to wind down the day. Now that would have been impressive

  14. “LAPD Chief Michel Moore released his own statement on Tuesday, saying the incident was “clearly not consistent with the core values of the Los Angeles Police Department.””

    Actually, it is completely consistent with the values of the LAPD.

  15. Given there were no fatalities from his shootings, maybe promote him to StormTrooper?

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