LAPD officer under investigation for allegedly fondling corpse

Los Angeles Police Department headquarters

Los Angeles Police Department headquarters

A Los Angeles police officer is under investigation after body camera footage reportedly captured him fondling a dead woman's breasts.

"The department is aware of the incident and an internal investigation has been launched", LAPD officer Jeff Lee said, adding that he can not comment further on pending personnel matters.

A Los Angeles police officer has been placed on leave for an investigation into accusations that he fondled a dead woman's breasts on a call, the Los Angeles Times reports.

"This has no place in law enforcement or anywhere", he said.

Attending the scene with another officer, the accused was alone in a room with the victim while his colleague retrieved paperwork from the vehicle.

The person, who was not authorized to publicly discuss the case and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity, said officials conducted a random inspection of the officer's body camera videos and found the incriminating footage. It is unclear when the officers responded to the call at the Los Angeles home or how long the alleged fondling lasted.

"If this allegation is true, then the behavior exhibited by this officer is not only wrong, but extremely disturbing, and does not align with the values we, as police officers, hold dear", the Los Angeles Police Protective League said in a statement shared with The Post. The department is also investigating the officer's work history. When the officer restarted the camera at the scene, it saved the preceding two minutes and allegedly caught him abusing the corpse. "This is not a complex situation", he said at a news conference at union headquarters.

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Chief spokesman Josh Rubenstein told the LA Times: 'We immediately launched an administrative investigation once we learned about the incident'.

Last month, the LAPD chief and the union reached an agreement to inspect body camera footage that doesn't involve arrests or the use of force as a way to make sure officers are following guidelines.

The random reviews are meant to prevent instances of biased policing.

Even prior to the agreement, police leaders could review recordings and discipline officers for misconduct discovered on video.

Other more serious stops, including when arrests are made or when force is used, were already routinely reviewed by the department.

When LAPD first deployed more than 7,000 body cameras in December 2014, many advocates lauded the move, saying the cams would help increase public trust and police transparency. The department collects almost 14,000 recordings every day.

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