L.A. County Sheriff Abruptly Removes 2nd-in-Command Ray Leyva

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Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva, left, places a pin on the collar of Assistant Sheriff Tim Murakami during a ceremony at East Los Angeles College on Dec. 3, 2018. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva, left, places a pin on the collar of Assistant Sheriff Tim Murakami during a ceremony at East Los Angeles College on Dec. 3, 2018. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

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A longtime Los Angeles County sheriff’s official who came back from retirement to serve as Sheriff Alex Villanueva’s second-in-command — and was seen as a steadying hand in a fledgling administration that has already grappled with controversies — is leaving a little more than three months into the new sheriff’s term, he said.

Ray Leyva said Villanueva told him in a brief meeting Monday morning that he wanted a sworn officer in Leyva’s position and thanked him for his service. Leyva had been working as a civilian after returning to the department from a medical retirement and was planning to serve for at least the first five or six months of Villanueva’s tenure.

Leyva said he thanked Villanueva for the opportunity to work for him, wished him well, took his belongings and left the building.

“Obviously I’m disappointed. I wanted good things to happen for the department, and I wanted to be part of that,” he said.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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