Cop molests girl
June 6, 1957
Former vice squad Detective Sgt. Philip Barnes was convicted of molesting a 13-year-old girl, according to The Times.
Barnes, of 3811 W. Avenue 41, presented an unusual challenge to prosecutors. Because he waived his preliminary hearing in Municipal Court and said he planned to plead guilty, there was no transcript of the girl's testimony. When Barnes changed his mind and pleaded not guilty, the girl had vanished and there was not enough evidence to go to court.
Deputy Dist. Atty. Joseph T. Powers located the girl after a nationwide search and personally brought her back to Los Angeles from the East Coast, but she refused to testify until a recording of Barnes' confession was played in court.
Barnes was convicted, but The Times failed to report the sentence imposed by Judge LeRoy Dawson.
Bonus fact: Dawson, who lost his left foot after being wounded in World War I, collapsed and died in 1964 after 33 years in the Municipal and Superior Courts.