'Bling Ring' judge calls LAPD advisor's film work 'stupid' decision
A Los Angeles Superior Court judge on Friday called a police officer's decision to work on a movie about the so-called bling ring "stupid," but refused to dismiss charges against one of three defendants in the case.
Judge Larry P. Fidler said Officer Brett Goodkin's decision to serve as a technical advisor on Sofia Coppola's docudrama "The Bling Ring" while still assigned to the case had harmed the prosecution of the defendants charged with burglarizing the homes of Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan.
"You should all write a thank you letter to Goodkin, because his judgment is as poor as it gets," Fidler said, addressing the attorneys for Roy Lopez Jr., Courtney Ames and Diana Tamayo. "You can have a field day with his credibility during trial .… It’s a shame what he did. It’s harmful to the people’s case."
Lopez’s attorney had filed a motion for charges to be dismissed, citing “outrageous police conduct.” Lopez, 29, Ames, 21, and Tamayo, 21, have pleaded not guilty and are awaiting trial.
According to payroll records, Goodkin received $12,500 from Coppola and her production company. Goodkin, who led the investigation into the group of San Fernando Valley youths who allegedly looted Hollywood celebrities' homes, is currently on desk duty as the LAPD investigates his work on the film.
Initially, Goodkin told the district attorney’s office that he received no more than $6,000 for serving as a consultant, and said that he made his captain aware of the Hollywood job in January, authorities said. But payroll records obtained in June revealed that Goodkin had been receiving money from "The Bling Ring" since 2011.
Coppola completed production on her film this spring, but it has yet to be set for release.
-- Amy Kaufman