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Scores of arrests made among Lancaster's ex-prisoners, sheriff's officials say

July 26, 2012 |  5:23 pm

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The recent release of several thousand inmates from the California prison system has resulted in more than 300 ex-prisoners under the partial supervision of L.A. sheriff's deputies in Lancaster, and there have been nearly 200 arrests among this group since October, authorities said Thursday.

The post-release supervision of certain parolees sentenced for nonviolent and non-serious crimes now falls to individual counties. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department created several "parolee compliance teams" to assist the county's Probation Department with monitoring them, according to a written statement by Deputy Michael Rust of the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station.

Since the program began last October, Lancaster deputies working with the parolee compliance team conducted several operations, including 315 compliance checks and 68 address verifications. These operations resulted in 182 arrests and the seizure of 13 firearms, Rust said. Rust added that many belonging to this new class of parolee had been arrested “multiple times” and “all of the arrests were for new crimes or fresh charges."

Rust said the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station’s three specialized crime-fighting units, which include burglary and robbery suppression teams and the parolee compliance team, were keeping up the pressure on criminals. In the first six months of the year, the units have made more than 330 arrests, dismantling nine burglary rings, Rust said.

However, a recent report by the Sheriff’s Department showed that violent crimes, which include murder, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault, increased by 16% in Lancaster during the first six months of this year compared to the same period in 2011. Homicides increased from four murders to eight.


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-- Ann M. Simmons

Photo: Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies and probation department officials in Lancaster. Credit: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department