Los Angeles judge halts release of records on misconduct and use of force by deputies

A Los Angeles County judge granted a temporary restraining order Thursday to block some police use-of-force and misconduct records from being released by the county, marking the latest step in an effort by California police unions to bar access to records following the passage of a landmark transparency law.

The move comes two days after The Times and Southern California Public Radio filed a lawsuit against Los Angeles County alleging the Sheriff’s Department violated the state public records act in failing to timely disclose records about two deputy sheriffs.

The order issued Thursday by Judge Mitchell L. Beckloff after a request from the Assn. for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs means the records sought by the media organizations are temporarily blocked from release.

Law enforcement unions in Ventura, San Bernardino and Riverside counties as well as the city of Los Angeles have also persuaded courts to temporarily restrict access to records of incidents that took place before Jan. 1, when the transparency law went into effect.