The Detective Bureau is the investigative branch of the police department and is primarily responsible for conducting follow-up investigations on criminal cases in order to ensure successful prosecutions. The follow-up work required on cases typically includes (but is not limited to) analyzing evidence, contacting and interviewing witnesses, preparing and serving search and arrest warrants, and contacting and coordinating with outside agencies. Detectives also file the criminal cases with the LA County District Attorney's Office and assist patrol in responding to emergency calls for service, arrange extradition of suspects from out of county/out of state, and at times speak to the media regarding certain cases.
The Detective Bureau is currently staffed by a supervising Sergeant, three full-time detectives, one detective/School Resource Officer and one detective/crime analyst/crime prevention officer.
In 2012, the Detective Bureau performed several undercover operations. With the assistance of neighboring agencies, undercover officers performed compliance checks to stores to ensure they wer not selling tobacco products to juveniles under 18 years of age. Undercover officers and officers from neighboring agencies also performed compliance checks at businesses offering massages. In two separate businesses, an employee was arrested for prostitution. Both massage businesses had their business license temporarily suspended.
Physical evidence is often critical to the successful resolution of criminal cases. Surveillance videos continue to be of great assistance in identifying suspects. Surveillance videos are occassionally posted to the department’s YouTube Channel as well as being released to the media. A suspect in a dog theft case turned himself in after seeing the surveillance video of himself on TV.
DNA also continues to help identify suspects. In one case, DNA from a robbery case was collected from a glove left behind by the suspect. In another case, a watch that the suspect attempted to take from another robbery was recovered and processed for DNA. Both suspects were eventually identified through their DNA and ultimately arrested.