COVID-19: Sheriff response to the pandemic
Purified Drinking Water for Senior Citizens
The COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for everyone, particularly for senior citizens. It is especially dangerous for seniors to be exposed to the potentially life-threatening virus. Many seniors are not able to shop for themselves, and have great difficulty carrying heavy items such as water. In an effort to assist the senior citizen community we serve, on May 6, 2020, East Los Angeles Sheriff’s Station delivered 20 water purifying pitchers to the senior citizen residents at “Hebert Housing Development.”
The gratitude and appreciation from the recipients were heartwarming and validated their need of easy access to purified water. They were happy to meet the captain of East Los Angeles Sheriff’s Station, Richard Mejia. These are the type of incidents that often go unnoticed by the public, but the men and women of East Los Angeles Station are strongly involved in meeting the needs of the community. Deputy personnel will continue maintaining their devoted partnership with the community we serve.
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Video Arraignment Pilot Program
During the early weeks of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the transportation of defendants from local arresting agencies to the courthouses became a concern. The movement of newly arrested and undiagnosed individuals into the confines of a courtroom created a huge risk to the health and safety of Court personnel, County employees, the public, and those already housed in the jail system. In order to minimize the movement of defendants and facilitate a quicker release of those not remanded into the custody of the Sheriff’s Department, the Sheriff’s Department took the initiative to host a Video Arraignment Pilot Program (VAPP) at designated patrol stations.
Court Services Division oversaw the project and provided personnel to facilitate video conferencing attorney interviews and video arraignment court procedures. The video arraignment process linked video communication between station jail video arraignment areas and court video arraignment departments. During the pilot program, the use of video arraignment reduced the necessity of transporting undiagnosed defendants by 47%. This innovative program greatly contributed to maintaining the low number of positive COVID-19 patients who were in custody.