Oct 26, 2022 - Politics & Policy

L.A. police investigating legality of city council recording

Photo of protesters holding signs calling on Nury Martinez to resign

Protestors demonstrate outside Los Angeles City Hall on Oct. 12, 2022 in the wake of a leaked audio recording revealing racist comments. Photo: Mario Tama via Getty Images

Los Angeles police said Tueaday detectives are investigating whether leaked audio of city council members' racist remarks was recorded illegally, AP reports.

Why it matters: The audio, which captured three Latino Democrats using derogatory language in a conversation about redistricting, led to intense backlash across the country and calls for resignation.

What they're saying: "The department has initiated a criminal investigation into an allegation of eavesdropping,” Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore said Tuesday, per AP.

  • Moore said the group of politicians heard on the call — then-Council President Nury Martinez, Council members Gil Cedillo and Kevin de León and then-Los Angeles County Federation of Labor President Ron Herrera — approached the police department about opening a probe.

Worth noting: Martinez and Herrera have since resigned from their positions.

The big picture: The audio recording, which was published by the Los Angeles Times, threw the city into turmoil weeks before Election Day.

  • California Attorney General Rob Bonta (D) announced after the leak that his office will investigate Los Angeles redistricting in light of the politicians' discussion about the need to consolidate Latino power.

Go deeper: Los Angeles City Hall scandal casts spotlight on Latino racism

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