Sheriff’s Lieutenant Mired in Allegations of Civil Rights Violations at LA County Probation

A 2022 candidate for LA County Sheriff and Lieutenant with the LASD is at the center of multiple incidents that leaves many questioning his command at LA County Probation.

Multiple sources at the LASD and LA County Probation say Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell allegedly solicited Lt. Eric Strong to run for LA County Sheriff with the intention of watering down votes in an attempt to derail incumbent Sheriff Alex Villanueva who was running for re-election. It is well-known throughout the department that Villanueva and Strong had a contentious relationship while assigned to the Lennox Station.

As a “reward” for Strong entering the race, sources say Mitchell allegedly directed Sheriff Luna to “loan” him to the probation department and prove his leadership capabilities which could potentially lead to a promotion within the department or another run at candidate for sheriff.

Strong is currently the Chief of Safety at the Probation Department.

However, Strong’s leadership at the Probations Department appears to be quite the opposite of what he promised voters during his campaign:

“I will strive to lead by example, and I will work with the community, stakeholders, and Elected Officials to identify solutions to our many shared problems. My platform is based on what I know is broken, and what our community is demanding their leaders take action to fix.”

In the last month, whistleblowers have come forward to The Current Report with multiple alarming incidents of kidnapping, illegal detention, false arrest, false imprisonment and a myriad of violations including the Peace Officers Bill of Rights, California criminal and federal civil rights violations.

On February 18th, 2024, at around 2:00pm, a supervisor with the Los Angeles County Probation Department, arrived to work at Los Padrinos Juvenile Hall (LPJH), a juvenile detention facility Located in Downey, CA., operated by the Los Angeles County Probation Department.

Before entering the facility officers must go through inspection. As the supervisor approached the inspection area, he emptied out his pockets and a sandwich bag containing four pills, ibuprofen, antibiotics, and Mucinex fell out of his pocket.

An officer who works directly with Strong, informed the supervisor that he could not bring in the medication. The supervisor informed the officer that he was sick and that the pills were his personal medication. The officer instructed the supervisor to place the pills in his car otherwise, he will be refused entry. A K-9 operated by Interquest was also alerted on the Supervisor’s backpack. However, the supervisor had sanitizer in his backpack, which contains alcohol and is what the K-9 was alerting to.

The supervisor followed the instructions and placed the pills in his car and entered the facility to perform his work duties. A few hours later, at the instruction of Lt. Strong, the supervisor was ordered to the front of the facility for interrogation by the original officer. The supervisor then invoked his Miranda Rights and requested an attorney.

The officer ignored his request and began interrogating him, taking compelled statements from an individual who has invoked his Miranda Rights. At this point, the Supervisor called his attorney to update his situation. The supervisor then requested to be allowed to leave the facility but probation officials denied his request. The supervisor then called Downey Police Department, informed them that he was being falsely imprisoned and requested assistance.

Downey Police Department responded and informed probation officials that absent of any criminal charges, they must release the supervisor.

As the supervisor was being escorted out of the facility, the officer, at the instruction of Strong, handcuffed the supervisor and placed him in a room inside the facility.

Sources say Strong arrived to Los Padres Juvenile Hall a short time later, and allegedly ignored the fact that the supervisor had invoked his Miranda Rights and continued to illegally interrogate him.

During the interrogation, Strong allegedly took the supervisor’s vehicle keys out of his pocket and illegally searched his vehicle. Strong stated that he had probable cause to search the supervisor’s vehicle because he observed a bag containing pills on the front seat.

However, having medication in your vehicle does not give law enforcement probable cause to search your vehicle. Additionally, the supervisor placed the bag containing his medication inside his vehicle at the orders of the officer. This being the case, Strong would have been required to obtain a search warrant, therefore, the search of the vehicle was illegal.

Strong allegedly confiscated the medication in the supervisor’s personal vehicle and presented them to the Interquest K-9 handler. According to sources, the K-9 sniffed the medication and failed to alert to the presence of any illegal substance. At that point, this should have been case closed. However, the Supervisor had technically been arrested and placed in handcuffs.

Strong informed Downey Police Department that he was performing an administrative investigation. The supervisor was eventually released from custody without charges.

According to sources, the Los Angeles County Probation Department, allegedly under the direction of Strong, has started the practice of handcuffing and placing their employees under arrest during administrative investigations. This practice is nonsensical in that it is illegal and a violation of the Peace Officer’s Bill of Rights, something Strong should be well aware given his extensive experience with the LASD Internal Affairs Bureau.

On February 24th, 2024, during visiting hours at Los Padrinos Juvenile Hall, a K-9 operated by Interquest alerted on a parent that was there to visit his child in custody at the facility. An officer, the same one in the illegal detention of the supervisor, handcuffed and detained the parent for an unknown period of time. This was allegedly done at the instruction of Strong. It was reported that ultimately, the parent was let free without any charges.

On March 5th, 2024, at approximately 10 a.m., the Los Angeles County Probation Department officers falsely imprisoned a Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACE) teacher’s assistant due to believing she was was providing drugs to the youth at the facility.

After searching her belongings, officers from the probation department escorted her to the front of the facility and placed her in a room. The probation department placed two officers at the entrance to the room to ensure she did not leave.

Strong called the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), who arrived shortly before 2:00pm. The Los Angeles County Probation Department officers presented the evidence to LAPD. The officers informed the probation department that they did not have probable cause to make an arrest. Allegedly at the instruction of Strong, probation department officers continued to detain her for two additional hours and she was eventually released around 4:00 p.m. without any charges.

As with the prior noted incidents, this also appears to have an illegal detention and violation of her civil rights.

On March 7th, 2024, Strong and his team (safety and security task force) allegedly arrested a deputy probation officer (DPO) at the end of her shift at Dorothy Kirby Center, a Los Angeles County Probation detention facility, located in Commerce, Ca.

After arresting the officer, Strong and his team booked her for multiple charges at the Lynwood LASD facility.

On March 11th, 2024, she was ordered released per 849 (b) (1)PC. No charges were presented to the District Attorney’s (DA) office. It was later reported that Strong and his team did not follow mandated evidence procedures, illegally obtained some of the evidence, illegally searched her car, and illegally searched her cell phone. She was eventually released on March 12th, 2024.

“Through his reported actions, it is my belief that Lt Strong is attempting to “send a message” to Probation Department personnel that he is on the job and will do whatever it takes to ferret out inappropriate/illegal activity.If any of these incidents are true as presented, however, the only real message he’s sending is that he does not understand civil or criminal law, and has no regard for the rights of employees as evidenced by his apparent multiple violations of the Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights Act (POBAR)” said retired LASD Captain Mike Bornman who spent five years at the Internal Affairs Bureau as a Sergeant and investigator of Deputy Involved Force and Shootings Rollout Team, about the alleged violations that could have potential criminal implications.

Cece Woods

The Current Report Editor in Chief Cece Woods started The Local Malibu, an activism based platform in 2014. The publication was instrumental in the success of pro-preservation ballot measures and seating five top vote-getters in the Malibu City Council elections.

During the summer of 2018, Woods exposed the two-year law enforcement cover-up in the Malibu Creek State Park Shootings, and a few short months later provided the most comprehensive local news coverage during the Woolsey Fire attracting over one million hits across her social media platforms.

Since 2020, Woods was the only journalist reporting on the on-going public corruption involving former L.A. Metro CEO Phil Washington. Woods worked with Political Corruption expert Adam Loew, DC Watchdog organizations and leaders in the Capitol exposing Washington which ultimately led to the withdrawal of his nomination to head the FAA.

Woods also founded Malibu based 90265 Magazine and Cali Mag devoted to the authentic southern California lifestyle.


  1. This is only part of the problem. The new management team led by Guillermo Villarosa, has illegally sent light duty Deputy Probation Officers home (without pay) as retaliation for not being able to work the juvenile halls which are under BSCC inspection. They have depleted all all adult area office and have only left supervisors behind to pretend client are still being seen. The adult probation department handles approximately 2,500 reports monthly which will not be done and sex offenders and high risk offenders will NOT be supervised because full duty officers have been removed from their regular assignments to cover the juvenile facilities while light duty staff have been sent home as punishment for have a doctors note.

  2. As president of local 685, probation officers union, this is a well written story I can appreciate. It clearly shows the level of incompetence we are dealing with in probation with Eric Strong and others.

  3. Who continues to leave this supervisor in charge with all these serious allegations. It’s apparent that this type of activity is running rampant throughout the probation department

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