Garcetti Expects ‘Not Much’ Effect in L.A. After Federal Appeals Court Restricts Prosecution of Sleeping on Streets

Reporters ask Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti questions at the site of a temporary homeless shelter expected to open soon in downtown L.A. on Sept. 5, 2018. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Reporters ask Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti questions at the site of a temporary homeless shelter expected to open soon in downtown L.A. on Sept. 5, 2018. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Mayor Eric Garcetti said Wednesday that a federal court ruling that curbs when cities can arrest homeless people for sleeping on the street will have little effect on Los Angeles, which has not been enforcing such rules at night.

L.A. officials agreed more than a decade ago to stop enforcing a nighttime ban on sleeping on streets and sidewalks until the city had built a minimum amount of homeless housing. The deal, known as the Jones settlement, ended a legal battle with skid row residents and their advocates.

This year, Garcetti and his aides said the city had met the legal requirements to resume enforcement of the ban. The mayor said there were no immediate plans to do so, but his statement nonetheless troubled advocates for the homeless who argued that the city would lose in court if it started enforcing the contested code.

This week, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that “as long as there is no option of sleeping indoors, the government cannot criminalize indigent, homeless people for sleeping outdoors, on public property, on the false premise they had a choice in the matter.”

Read the full story at LATimes.com.