On the evening of Saturday, September 12, two Los Angeles County Sheriff deputies were sitting in a patrol car with the windows down when an unidentified man ran up and shot them, putting them both in critical condition. The 31 year old female officer, who was shot through her jaw, and the 24 year-old male officer had both been on the force for a little more than a year before this incident occurred. In that year the department has had more than its fair share of scandals, including the killing of a teenage security guard by the name of Andres Guardado and revelations that LASD is in fact rife with gang members who call themselves the Executioners. While Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva is pushing the narrative that this was an ambush of innocent cops, even going so far as to indirectly tie it to the wave of protests against racism and police brutality across the nation, new information is casting doubt on these assertions. The latest information released by a whistleblower has revealed that LASD and The Executioners law enforcement gang are inextricably linked.
The whistleblower who revealed the truth about many of LASD’s officers being tied to the Executioners was the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department deputy Austreberto “Art” Gonzalez. Were it not for Gonzalez’s complaint against L.A. County, the world would never have been alerted to the existence of the Executioners in the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department headquarters, or the fact that the deputy who murdered Andres Guardado was in fact a prospective gang member. According to Gonzalez, the Executioners are “a band of deputies with matching tattoos that wields vast power at the Compton station” that “celebrates deputy shootings” of civilians. The tattoos in question are of a skull with Nazi imagery and an AK-47, and “members were involved in setting illegal quotas and work slowdowns – which involve ignoring or responding slowly to calls – when they did not get preferred assignments.” Members would only become inked as Executioners, according to Gonzalez, by going out and executing a member of the public in a ritual killing or by “otherwise committing acts of violence in furtherance of the gang.” In August, the same department shot and killed a 29 year-old Black man named Dijon Kizzee. Kizzee was stopped while riding a bicycle for what officers immediately described as a “bicycle code violation.” LASD officers then shot 15 bullets into Kizzee’s body. One wonders if the Executioners threw what they termed a “998 party” after this shooting occurred. A 998 party, named after the code for an “officer-involved shooting”, is a party thrown anytime a deputy shoots and possibly kills a member of the public. Law enforcement gangs such as these are not new or even necessarily rare in Los Angeles county. Since 1990, law enforcement gangs have cost L.A. County $55 million in civil lawsuits.
All of this makes the still unsolved case of eighteen year-old Andres Guardado all the more sinister. Guardado was working as a security guard at an auto shop in the city of Gardena when LASD officers approached him on the night of June 18, 2020. We now know thanks to the whistleblower that the Michael Vegan, the deputy who would shoot him to death, was in fact a prospective member of the Executioners. Chris Hernandez, the deputy Vega was on the call with at the time of the incident, was a prospective member as well. Apparently they were sent to murder Guardado, a member of the public who never did anything to hurt anyone, as a step in the membership process to be inked as an Executioner. The deputies later made up a story for a police report where Guardado flashed a gun at them first, causing them to chase him down an alleyway because he was deemed a “threat”. The horrifying truth is that the Executioners designated Guardado as the member of the public to be eliminated. Guardado was running down the alleyway in panic and fear for his life. As he ran, Deputy Miguel Vega chased him and shot five bullets into the young man’s back. The deputies were not wearing their body cameras at the time, and if they had been they almost certainly would have been turned off.
Andres Guardado’s sister knew from the moment the deputies gave their account that that it was a complete fabrication. “He has always worked as a professional security guard,” she said. “He had no armed weapons on him. None. I lost a part of me, it’s empty, and I’m never gonna have him back. I’m never going to see him again. I just can’t believe this happened to my brother. It really hurts me.” According to the Andrew Heney, the owner of the auto body shop where Guardado was hired, “We had a security guard that was out front because we had just had certain issues with people tagging and stuff like that. And then the police came up, and they pulled their guns on him and he ran because he was scared, and they shot and killed him. He’s got a clean background and everything. There’s no reason.” When the family arrived at the scene of their loved one’s murder, there were several deputies there. The family was treated very cruelly by the supervisor, and one of the officers kept smirking, smiling and laughing the entire time. It is not known which of these other deputies may have been members or prospective members of the Executioners gang. Three months after Guardado was killed two LASD deputies would be shot while sitting in a parked patrol car with the window down. The alleged assailant accused of carrying out the attack was arrested yesterday, October 1, and is pleading not guilty.