Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Mitrice Richardson's father asks county supervisors to investigate her death

October 5, 2010 |  3:02 pm

Mitrice The father of Mitrice Richardson, the woman whose remains were discovered nearly a year after she disappeared, pleaded with the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday to help him find out what happened.

"I've never relied on this community to give me nothing," Michael Richardson said. "All I'm saying is for 19 years, I've paid in the system. I want the system's help."

The saga began Sept. 16, 2009, when Mitrice Richardson was arrested at Geoffrey's restaurant in Malibu after she behaved bizarrely and could not pay her dinner bill. Deputies took her into custody at the Lost Hills/Malibu Sheriff's Station, releasing her after nightfall without her car -- it had been impounded -- or her cellphone and purse, which were in the car.

Months later, investigators found evidence that she had probably been suffering from a severe form of bipolar disorder.

Despite false sightings, including several in Las Vegas, and numerous searches, Richardson's skeletal remains were found in Malibu Canyon in August. Sheriff's officials said there was no sign of foul play. They also don't believe she fell to her death. A spokesman for the Los Angeles County coroner's office estimated that her remains had been there at least six months, or possibly the entire time she had been missing.

Michael Richardson, who has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the county, has criticized authorities for releasing her at night with no transportation, money or phone. The site where her body was found was also not made a crime scene, Richardson said.

Stanley W. Prince, a representative of the National Assn. for Equal Justice in America, also spoke in favor of looking into the circumstances surrounding Richardson's death.

"We're here in support to make sure that there is a full and fair investigation of what took place in Malibu," Prince said.

-- Kimi Yoshino

Photo: Mitrice Richardson