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Stephanie Lazarus In Her Own Words (Part IX, 4/18/85)


Stephanie Lazarus In Her Own Words (Part IX, 4/18/85)

In 1986, Sherri Rasmussen was murdered in her Van Nuys home.

23 years later, in 2009, LAPD Detective Stephanie Lazarus was arrested for the crime. Lazarus was convicted of first degree murder in 2012, a trial I covered from gavel to gavel.

Early in her LAPD career, Stephanie kept a diary of her daily patrol rounds.

This diary entry is from April 18, 1985, 34 years ago today. 

At the time, Stephanie was a patrol officer assigned to the LAPD’s Deonshire Division.

0730 - 1615 (1545)

No roll call, it was work out day. This was my first day out in the field. I worked with John M---, a P 3+1. Real nice guy. We worked the Northridge Mall Z Car. The Z Car is an extra car, receives no radio calls. We basically patrolled the Mall (inside) and Parking Lot (outside).

First thing out of the Station, we did stop for coffee at Foster’s on Reseda.

Then we checked out Bryant and Vanalden. This is the area for selling Heroin. It looks worse than Leland / McCadden and St. Andrews and Marathon in Hollywood.

Then we checked out the parking lot in the Mall. We made a lot of high school students who weren’t 18 go back to school and not go into the Mall. Most of the kids say they're 18 but they're not.

Then we walked around the Mall, keeping an eye out for the opening of the jewelry stores. John knows everyone in the Mall which is neat.

At about 1130 John had to go to a special lunch for a special award. I went to Fuddrucker’s and met another unit that was already there. It was 2 guys that I don’t really know. But they were somewhat nice. I could tell not real thrilled. This place went 1/2.

After lunch I was leaving the lot and I saw John Ruetten’s car. Just my luck. I put a note on it and watched the car for 1/2 hour and checked up on it a few times. Well I find out from him later that he had gotten into Fuddrucker’s at about 1210. Just about 5 minutes before I left.

Then I patrolled the mall a bit. Some girls stopped me to tell me that they saw this lady beating her child. I went and checked it out. A lady was really upset but it didn’t look like she had beaten her child.

Then I picked John up at the Sub Station in the Mall and we patrolled around and walked in the Mall before End of Watch which was about 1540.

Heissel today said something about my tan. I said, Yeah, I was wearing my bikini at the run. She said, Yeah, I heard. I couldn’t imagine what was said.

My friend Matthew McGough's book, The Lazarus Files: A Cold Case Investigation, will be released on April 30, 2019. You can pre-order his book on Amazon HERE.

This post first appeared on Trials & Tribulations, please read the originial post: here

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Stephanie Lazarus In Her Own Words (Part IX, 4/18/85)


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