Re: RARA-AVIS: Theme of the month - Los Angeles

Date: 06 Sep 2001

Re Mark's question below:

> This [the cops who beat up visiting OC figures] is
> the famous Hat Squad, right? The movie
> Mullholland Falls is
> about them.

Although *Mullholland Falls* calls the squad of cops charged with suppressing organized crime the "Hat Squad," my understanding is that the "Hat Squad" referred to LAPD's Robbery Division. Occasionally, I'm told, the officers of the Robbery/Homicide Division (the two units were merged in 1969) are still called the "Hats," although the more common appellation is the "Suits."

The detail responsible for combatting organized crime was the Intelligence Division, run by Captain Jim Hamilton from the late '40s through the early '60s, when it was taken over by future chief Darryl Gates. In his autobiography *Chief*, Gates actually talks about mobsters being met at the airport by Intelligence detectives who suggested that their presence wasn't really desired in LA.

There've been several movies dramatizing the work of the Division. In the 1954 theatrical film version of
*Dragnet*, Joe Friday, working the Day Watch out of Intelligence, is assigned to nail a Mafia figure suspected of a gang killing. In the Edgar-winning TV-movie, *Man Against the Mob*, George Peppard plays an LAPD sergeant chosen to organize a "Gang-Supression Detail" (the fictional counterpart to the real-life Intelligence Division) in post-war LA. *LA Confidential* suggests that the gang harassment was carried out by a detail of homicide cops rather than a separate division (SPOILER ALERT - SPOILER ALERT - SPOILER ALERT - and moreover that it was being orchestrated by the commander of the Homicide Division so he that could take over organized crime in LA without resistance).

A non-fiction book entitled *LA Secret Police* (the authors' names escape me) purports to tell the inside story of the Division's abuses.


__________________________________________________ Do You Yahoo!? Get email alerts & NEW webcam video instant messaging with Yahoo! Messenger

# To unsubscribe from the regular list, say "unsubscribe rara-avis" to
#  This will not work for the digest version.
# The web pages for the list are at .

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 06 Sep 2001 EDT