High City Official Andrew Adelman in Rape Investigation
The LAPD search warrant didn't mince words. It stated that shortly after a July 10 pub crawl involving
half a dozen friends and acquaintances had begun near downtown's Music Center, a woman in the group blacked out and hours later "woke up naked in bed." That wouldn't be the end of her dawning horror: "There was a pornographic movie on a big screen television," the report continued. "There was a small pile of sex toys on the bed. [She] felt a hard object in her anus she believed to be a dildo or vibrator. There was also a vibrator in her vagina."
It got worse from there, as the woman discovered a fellow pub crawler sitting beside her on his bed -- naked, and placing a dildo in her mouth. For L.A.'s governing circles, though, the truly explosive detail to emerge is that the alleged perpetrator of the July 10-11 incident is Andrew Adelman, the general manager of L.A.'s Department of Building and Safety. (In 2006 Adelman was the subject of a critical L.A. Weekly feature accusing him of abusiveness and cronyism.)
The warrant quoted above was obtained by The Enterprise Report and published on its site. (Update: We reported earlier that The Enterprise Report got the document with the names already redacted. In fact, the site's Eric Longabardi notes, he had the full document but redacted the names at the request of LAPD due to the nature of the case, but named Adelman after officials decided to go public.)
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Adelman has not been charged or arrested, but placed on administrative
leave as of Tuesday -- he's also retained Mark Geragos, the
high-profile L.A. attorney whose past clients have included Michael
Jackson, Chris Brown and Scott Peterson. It's important to remember that, as shocking
as the alleged crime involving the unidentified woman's rape is, the
perpetrator, if charged, will almost certainly face a kidnapping
charge, given that the victim has claimed she was moved from her point
of blackout to the suspect's condo against her will.
There will also
surely be questions about whether the woman was drugged. In the LAPD
warrant, the woman claims she "felt like a robot"
during her assault, suggesting she was under the influence of more than
The investigation of the woman's charges is being conducted by the Rampart Division's Robbery-Homicide Division, which is currently only identifying the suspect as a city employee. If charged, Adelman would become the center of a major civic scandal -- and a political migraine for Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Adelman is no small cog in the bureaucracy -- his department is an important power hub in city government. Its Web page listing his c.v. states that Adelman "manages a staff of over 1000 managers, supervisors, engineers, inspectors and support staff located in 16 offices with an annual revenue and operating budget of over $120 million. He oversees approval of over 140,000 construction projects with a valuation of over $5 billion dollars and performance of over 900,000 inspections annually."
Nor is he without academic credentials. According to the same bio, "Mr. Adelman graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, with Bachelor of Science Degrees in Civil and Nuclear Engineering and a Master of Science Degree in Structural Engineering. He also obtained a Management Certificate from Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Mr. Adelman is a licensed Professional Engineer in several states including California and Arizona."
It's far too soon to begin predicting courtroom scenarios (the District Attorney's office hasn't even received a finished LAPD report on its investigation), but L.A.
juries have gone both ways in rape cases. Celebrity fashion designer
Anand Jon was convicted of multiple counts of sexual assault last November and
faces life in prison. On the other hand, John Gordon Jones, the so-called "Limousine
Rapist," was acquitted in 2001 of 28 charges that he drugged and raped female
Attorney Geragos told Times crime reporters Andrew
Blankstein and Richard Winton that "It's unfortunate that . . . an
investigation has been made public before
any determination of the validity of the allegations have been made."
One quote from the police report that will surely find its way into a trial came after the woman repeatedly spurned the suspect's continued advances.
"He wanted to know why she would not kiss him" the report says her attacker asked.
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