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L.A. Occasions seeks to make depositions public in sexual harassment case involving former Garcetti aide

The Los Angeles Occasions has requested a choose to make public testimony in a lawsuit by which an LAPD officer alleges he was sexually harassed by Mayor Eric Garcetti’s former advisor.

In a movement filed Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court docket, Occasions’ lawyer Dan Laidman argued there may be “overriding public curiosity” within the litigation involving LAPD Officer Matthew Garza, who labored on Garcetti’s safety element.

The Occasions’ movement asks Decide Curtis A. Kin to change an order permitted by a earlier choose in January that granted attorneys for each Garza and town broad authority to make data within the case confidential. The Occasions has requested a extra narrowly drawn order underneath which solely delicate, private data can be redacted on paperwork.

“Regardless of the apparent public curiosity on this litigation — introduced towards town by a police officer on the mayor’s safety element, the place the entire alleged conduct occurred at Metropolis Corridor and different official settings — the events have stipulated to a blanket Protecting Order that permits them just about unfettered discretion to designate any doc or deposition confidential, with no displaying of excellent trigger,” the movement states.

Metropolis Atty. Mike Feuer’s spokesman Rob Wilcox mentioned metropolis attorneys are reviewing the movement. He declined to remark additional.

Greg Smith, lawyer for Garza, mentioned in an e mail that his shopper helps the movement.

LAPD officer Garza sued town final summer time, alleging that Jacobs made crude sexual feedback and touched him over a interval of a number of years. Garza’s lawsuit states that Garcetti witnessed the inappropriate habits and that on some events, the mayor laughed at Jacobs’ crude feedback.

Jacobs has known as Garza’s lawsuit “pure fiction.” Garcetti testified in his deposition taken earlier this yr that he didn’t witness any inappropriate habits by Jacobs.

Among the deposition testimony within the case, corresponding to that of Garcetti and his chief of workers, Ana Guerrero, wasn’t marked confidential, in response to The Occasions’ movement. However the events seem to have saved at the least 4 different depositions underneath wraps since March, the movement states.

The Occasions’ movement argues the blanket Protecting Order “doesn’t embrace any displaying of excellent trigger for confidentiality” and that with out the order, the depositions within the case can be public data which can be topic to disclosure underneath the California Public Data Act.

The movement additionally argues that “the events don’t have countervailing pursuits that might overcome the extraordinarily sturdy public curiosity in disclosure right here.”

“The Occasions introduced this movement as a result of circumstances like this demand most transparency,” Laidman mentioned in an announcement to The Occasions. “There’s a robust public curiosity in studying the idea for these allegations of high-level misconduct, and in scrutinizing how the courts deal with circumstances involving highly effective public businesses and officers.”

The Occasions has coated a number of the deposition testimony, together with that of the mayor, Garza, and a former aide to Garcetti who mentioned that he was subjected to undesirable touching by Jacobs.

Different Garcetti aides testified that they didn’t see Jacobs act in an inappropriate method.

The Occasions on Wednesday reported that the previous president of the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles, a nonprofit group, testified in his deposition that he heard Garcetti say phrases to the impact of “I can’t consider Rick labored out at Metropolis Corridor and that we bought by way of it with out a lawsuit.”

Garcetti, in his February deposition, was requested if he had made such an announcement and denied that he had. The mayor on Wednesday mentioned he stands by his testimony.

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