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STAR Center ~ 11515 South Colima Road, Building B, Whittier CA 90604 www.LASheriffsMuseum.lasd.org
History in the Making
LASD History
SWAT RocksSWAT Rocks By Deputy Chris Miller (retired) Los Angeles Sheriff’s Museum Years ago, deputies had to approach dangerous situations without some of the sophisticated equipment that is available tod
History of the Maternity Uniform for Pregnant DeputiesHistory of the Maternity Uniform for Pregnant Deputies By Deputy Chris Miller (retired) Los Angeles Sheriff’s Museum In the early 1970’s, the authorized uniform worn by female deputies was a white blouse and green skirt. On the left side of the white blouse was a badge holder with the deputy’s name tag attached on the right. The shirt had no patches. All female deputies were required to wear a girdle and nylon stockings. Their revolver and handcuffs were carried in their uniform black purse with shoulder strap. After the first female deputies were assigned to work patrol, the female uniform changed. At first, females wore the same uniform as male deputies Eventually, the female uniform changed to fit the smaller contours of the female body. Patches were smaller and the Sam Browne gun belt was replaced with a narrower version known as the Sally Browne. During the years that female deputies wore the same uniform as male deputies, when a female became pregnant they wore what pregnant deputies have worn for years, a white blouse and green skirt. White maternity blouses were made by inmates in the sewing room at Sybil Brand Institute for Women. It was a simple shirt without a badge holder or patches which would normally identify her as a deputy. Female deputies had to find their own maternity skirt to wear with the white blouse. At that time, matrons were assigned to sheriff’s stations. Although they wore the same uniform as pregnant female deputies, matrons were not sworn and had no police powers. Matrons searched and supervised female inmates but they were not armed or trained to perform police work. When a pregnant deputy was searching an inmate and got into a confrontation there was no way for the prisoner to know that she was a deputy. This created a problem if the prisoner was to be charged with assaulting a peace officer. In 1975, Deputy Janet Carroll was assigned to Santa Clarita Station when she became pregnant. During her pregnancy she was assigned to the complaint desk. At times, she would be relieved of her desk duties in order for her to search a female prisoner. She always notified the person that she was a deputy and was going to put her hands on them in order to search them. If she was involved in a confrontation and later had to testify in court, how could she convince jurors that she had informed the person that she was a deputy? To prevent this situation, she needed a uniform shirt that would make it obvious to the prisoner that she was a deputy. She decided that a maternity uniform shirt with patches and a badge would solve the problem. But she would need the uniform committee’s approval. Janet decided to design a uniform shirt for pregnant female deputies with patches and a badge holder and presented it to the committee. Since Janet wasn’t very experienced at sewing, she hired a seamstress to create the new uniform. She and the seamstress went to a fabric store where they purchased a pattern for a pregnant woman’s blouse. They also bought tan washable cotton material that matched the Department’s Class “B” uniform shirt. The seamstress sewed the blouse together and then attached Class “B” patches and a cloth badge. The seamstress attached an elastic band on the green uniform skirt. This band allowed the skirt to expand as the pregnancy progressed. Janet wanted to obtain approval for the new pregnant deputy’s uniform so she submitted Polaroid photos to the uniform committee. Eventually, she was asked to travel to the Hall of Justice to model her new design. She did not want to go down to the Hall of Justice since it was a 60 mile drive. On the phone, Janet explained to the uniform committee that it was a safety issue so it was important to approve the uniform. Once the uniform committee approved the maternity uniform blouse, they notified Janet’s captain who then notified Janet. After that, when a female deputy became pregnant they called Janet to find out how to create their own maternity uniform blouse. Janet informed them what pattern to purchase and the type and color of material that would match our uniforms. She also instructed them about attaching patches and a badge. Today, when a female deputy becomes pregnant she must go to a uniform store and be measured for a maternity uniform shirt and uniform pants. Depending on how far the pregnancy has progressed, the seamstress will add a certain amount of inches to the shirt to allow for expansion. The shirt is worn over the pants so no uniform belt is worn. Instead, the pants are fitted with elastic to allow for expansion as the pregnancy progresses. Other police departments had changed their female officer’s uniforms years before the Sheriff’s Department. In those days, most of the Department Executives were male and they didn’t understand the women’s concerns. Female deputies had to be their own advocates for the changes they needed. Deputy Janet Carroll was a pioneer for her sisters on the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department. Copyright Los Angeles Sheriff’s Museum
Memorial Torch Relay Run - Lighting the First FlameLos Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Memorial Torch Relay Run Lighting the First Flame By Deputy Chris Miller (retired) Los Angeles Sheriffs’ Museum From 1850, when Los Angeles County was first formed, until the beginning of 1970, less than 300 law enforcement officers from agencies throughout the county had been killed in the line of duty. In the early 1970’s, there was a dramatic increase of the number of officers killed. In just a five year period between 1970 and early 1975, 12 Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputies were killed in the line of duty. During one traffic stop in 1970, four CHP Officers were all killed by just two suspects. Near the end of April of 1975, Sergeant Lee Stahl, assigned to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Training Bureau, wanted the public to be aware of the brave deputies who sacrificed their lives protecting the public. Borrowing an idea from the Olympic Torch Run, his idea was to conduct a relay torch run from one sheriff’s station to another. This would be the perfect way to make the public aware of the heroic deputies who died in the line of duty for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The plan was for runners to travel between each sheriff’s station to the other until all 16 stations were visited. This involved all stations except for Avalon on Catalina Island. Sergeant Stahl submitted a memo suggesting the idea to Captain Richard Foreman of Training Bureau. Captain Foreman thought it was a great idea. After a discussion with Sergeant Stahl, it was decided that since the next memorial service was just two weeks away there was not enough time to plan the run for 1975. If they waited until the following year, they would have twelve months to plan the event. The memo was forwarded from Captain Foreman through channels to Sheriff Peter Pitchess. The Sheriff also thought this was a wonderful idea. In fact, he was so enthused about the idea, he insisted that the first Torch Run be hastily organized and take place before the ceremony only two weeks later. Because there was such a short time to plan the event, the entire run was conducted by members of the Training Bureau staff. There were 24 runners who traversed the 291 miles. Some of the original runners from the Training Bureau included Captain Richard Foreman, Sergeants Lee Stahl and Pat Connolly as well as Deputies Ray Baytos, Ed Hitchcock, Don Swift, John Kolman, Lynn Vannoy, Julie Cabe and Rudio Lovio. The first Memorial Torch Run began on May 13th, 1975 and took place over 3 days. Each runner ran 6 miles at a 10 minute pace. The torch that was designed for the run was very heavy. Because of its weight, runners had to constantly change the torch from one hand to another. Prior to the first Memorial Torch Relay Run, a teletype was sent to all law enforcement agencies whose jurisdiction the Memorial Torch Run would be passing through. The Los Angeles Police Department was very helpful and provided traffic control when the Torch Run passed through their city. The first Memorial Torch Run began at the Hall of Justice in downtown Los Angeles. Runners proceeded from station to station until all 16 Stations, excluding Avalon, were visited. Although only one runner ran at a time, runners from a station area would join the Training Bureau runner as they passed through that area. In many cities contracting police services with the Sheriff’s Department, the Mayor and city officials declared the run a significant city event and were on hand to cheer on the torch bearer as they passed through their town. A motor home was donated for the run and was used by runners to rest before they began the next leg of the run. On rough or steep terrain, some of the stronger runners ran longer or ran more than one leg of the relay. The runners were also able to make quick stops at some of the sheriff’s stations in order to take showers. Academy recruits were used to drive the pace cars. Two years prior to the run, Detective Don Schneider and Detective Sergeant Carl Wilson, assigned to Lakewood Station, were shot and killed when they attempted to apprehend a suspect who murdered two people. The Captain of Lakewood Sheriff’s Station, Ken Cable, wanted to honor the two detectives for their dedication. He worked with the city to plan a special welcome to their station. Prior to the runners arriving at midnight, the street lights along the route were turned off. Bleachers were set up near Lakewood Sheriff’s Station and filled with city employees from the surrounding contract cities, including council members, mayors and their families. As the runners approached Lakewood Station, Deputy Pat Connolly was running with the torch. The run stopped for a short ceremony honoring the deputies killed in the line of duty. The color guard marched into place just before Captain Cable gave a short speech honoring his fallen deputies. Afterwards, Pat Connolly passed the torch to Julie Cabe. The Sheriff’s Helicopter involved in the Skynight Program, which patrolled the City of Lakewood, flew along with its spotlight lighting Julie as she received the torch and left Lakewood Station. Everyone cheered for the runners. It was a spectacular sight! The runners continued on traveling from station to station until they completed the run at 10 AM on the third day. The Los Angeles County Peace Officer’s Memorial Service took place at Biscailuz Center at 10 AM on May 15, the third day of the run. During the Memorial Service, Sergeant Lee Stahl ran up the hill with the torch and handed it off to Sheriff Pitchess. This was a perfect ending to the first Memorial Torch Run for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department to honor all of the deputies who gave their lives while protecting the citizens of Los Angeles County. This first Memorial Torch Run established a long tradition. The run has started each year at Sheriff’s Headquarters. Sheriff’s Headquarters was located at the Hall of Justice until it closed in January 1994 and was moved to Sherman Block Sheriff’s Headquarters in Monterey Park. Through the years, changes have been made to the route and times of the Memorial Torch Run. When new stations were added, the route and times of the run were changed. Because of a major fire that damaged mountain roads, the route of the run was altered for five years. On occasion, the run was diverted to pass by a location where a deputy was killed. This has been discouraged since it changes the route of the run to the next station and also effects torch handoff times for all of the stations that follow. Today, the Memorial Torch Relay is coordinated by the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Athletic Association and consists of 56 legs, each five to ten miles long, and travels to each mainland Sheriff’s Station in a circuit totaling 313 miles. During the same weekend, Avalon Regional Sheriff’s Station conducts a Torch Relay Run in the City of Avalon on Catalina Island. The Memorial Torch Run has now expanded with numerous runners running at a time. Each station provides runners for their leg of the run. Many of them run with their station flag displaying their station logo. All department members, sworn and professional staff, all other police agencies, as well as family members and friends are invited to participate in any leg of the relay. The Annual Memorial Torch Relay and its participants proudly honor the memory of those brave and dedicated individuals who have sacrificed their lives in the performance of their duties in service to the citizens of Los Angeles County. Copyrighted by “The Los Angeles Sheriffs’ Museum”
Teri March-Astorga - (Deputy David March’s Widow) - Picking Up Her Shatered LifePicking Up Her Shatered Life Teri March-Astorga (Deputy David March’s Widow) By Deputy Chris Miller (retired) Los Angeles Sheriffs’ Museum David March David March was a man of few words but when
Sergeant Raymond C. Willis – EOW April 15th, 1957Sergeant Raymond C. Willis – EOW April 15th, 1957 By Lieutenant John J. Stanley The weather on the morning of Sunday April 14th, 1957 was not very good for flying, but to avid airmen a little weathe
Deputy James McDermott - EOW August 26, 1931Deputy James L. McDermott - EOW 26 August 1931 By Lt. John Stanley Deputy James Leo McDermott served as a deputy sheriff during the most deadly period in the history of American law enforcement. T
Deputy Adolfo Celis End of WatchDeputy Adolfo Celis EOW 18 April 1883 by Lt. John Stanley It was a cruel and ironic end for a young man whose life was dedicated to public service. Deputy Sheriff Adolfo Celis described by the Lo
Supporting the Museum
Preserving Our Department's HistoryYou can help us preserve the Sheriff's Department's history by donating memorabilia, photographs, film or documents relating to our history. Call the Los Angeles Sheriffs’ Museum and arrange for the items to be picked up or deliver to the museum on a pre-arranged date. Print the attached donation form, complete & sign it. Include the form with your donation. Museum phone number (562) 946-7859 (Wed & Thurs) One time financial donation can be sent to: Sheriff’s Relief Association Museum Fund 218 11515 S. Colima Road Whittier, CA 90604
Buck A Month ClubYou can help the Sheriffs' Museum preserve our Department's history by donating just one dollar a month. This can be done automatically through payroll deduction. By printing the attached form, completing & signing it and sending it to the museum, you can make a difference! If you are more passionate about preserving our Department's history you can donate $5, $10 or more. Make a difference! Print the form, complete it and mail it today!
Deputy Mary Hurdle describes the night her husband, Deputy Didier Hurdle was killed
Hall of Justice reduced from 14 floors to 12 floors
Hall of Justice Parking StructureThe cleaning of the exterior of the Hall of Justice has been completed so the nylon cover is being removed. To the right of the Hall of Justice is the new parking structure. The parking structure is 10 levels and will park 1,000 cars. It is 5 levels below ground and 5 levels above.
Hall of Justice WindowsThe exterior granite walls of the Hall of Justice have been cleaned during reconstruction of the building. Beneath the columns is a parapet that runs all the way around the building on the 10th floor. The Jail was located on 10th through 14th floors. The smaller windows were installed only on the jail floors to prevent escapes. The larger windows were installed on the non-secure floors below the 10th floor. The building was built in 1925 so it had no air conditioning. In order to cool down the interior of the building all of the windows could be opened. During reconstruction, air conditioning is being installed and the windows are being sealed shut to make the system more efficient.
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