'Bling Ring' case officer probed by LAPD Internal Affairs
LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- An internal investigation is under way against the Los Angeles police officer who solved a string of burglaries in the so-called "Bling Ring" celebrity break-ins case.
LAPD Officer Brett Goodkin was hired as a technical adviser and even has a role in a movie about the investigation.
However, the trials are still pending for three of the defendants and Goodkin apparently never notified prosecutors about his work on the movie.
"That alone is enough to cast doubt on his testimony, and when you case doubt on his testimony, you cast doubt upon the entire case," said Stan Goldman, a professor at Loyola Law School. "If the officer has got some incentive to make this case look more sensational than it really is, then that's a problem for the prosecution."
However, Goodkin's attorney Ira Salzman said his client never talked about specifics or compromised the case.
"He acted as a technical adviser and only discussed the procedures that occur in all cases," Salzman told Eyewitness News. "The only thing he didn't do was to obtain a work permit with LAPD, which is an administrative issue. Brett did not compromise the case whatsoever and any indication to the contrary is simply not true."
LAPD officials said Goodkin has been removed from his regular duties as investigator and is not being placed on administrative assignment until Internal Affairs concludes its investigation.
"We are evaluating the information to see what impact it has on the pending case," said the L.A. County's District Attorney's office in a statement released Friday morning.
Sofia Coppola is the director and writer behind the movie, which will carry the title "The Bling Ring." The movie is based on a band of young people charged with stealing $3 million worth of goods from the homes of Orlando Bloom, Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and other celebrities. According to the Internet Movie Database, the film's cast includes Emma Watson, Leslie Mann and Kirsten Dunst.
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