Ice Cube is teaming up with Woody Harrelson and Ben Foster in the new film Rampart.
The film, which is centered around the scandals that took place in the Los Angeles Police Department in the 1990s, showcases police misconducts in the Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums (CRASH) anti-gang program including unprovoked shootings, beatings, planting of evidence, framing of suspects, stealing and dealing narcotics, bank robbery, perjury and covering up evidence.
Ice Cube is set to play a LAPD officer alongside Foster, who are colleagues with Harrelson’s character, an LAPD officer on a redemptive journey who finds himself embroiled in scandal.
The LAPD, which has widely been criticized for the mishandling of the murder cases of the Notorious B.I.G. and Tupac, have denied allegations that they have ever hired criminals to work as officers in the division.
But according to retired robbery-homicide detective Russell Poole in the critically acclaimed book “Labyrinth”, the police knowingly hired gang members David Mack and Rafael Pérez who were well known throughout the Blood community.
According to the book “Labyrinth”, Mack and Pérez were also employed by former Death Row CEO Suge Knight, along with other police officers from the Rampart division, to serve as security at various Death Row events. Poole also states that the officers witnessed and participated in illegal activities while working events.
Mack, who was suspected to have played a role in the murder of Notorious B.I.G., was later arrested for bank robbery, while still employed as an LAPD officer.
Adding to the scandal was the shooting death of corrupt LAPD officer Kevin Gaines by fellow officer and undercover detective Frank Lyga in 1997. The shooting, which was ruled self-defense, uncovered evidence of Officer Gaines’s corrupt behavior.
According to reports, Gaines filed a bogus claim against the city of Los Angeles for “mistreatment” against him during an arrest while he was off duty. After the ruling in Gaines favor, it was later discovered that the suit was filed to secure his officer pension. Police also state adding to growing suspicion was the fact that Gaines was dating and living with Suge Knights ex-wife and the then manager of Snoop Dogg, Sharitha Knight.
According to published police files, Poole, who was assigned to investigate the Lyga-Gaines shooting, recovered evidence that Gaines’s lifestyle did not match the $55,000 a year salary he was paid as an LAPD officer.
The published reports show that at the time, Gaines drove a Mercedes and wore designer suits. Detectives also found nine credit cards as well as a receipt for a $952 restaurant tab at Monty’s Steakhouse, a Westwood hangout for members of Death Row Records.
At the time, Death Row Records was under investigation by the FBI since 1993 for its strong ties to Compton’s Mob Piru Bloods gang.
Rampart, a film based on James Ellroy’s screenplay, has been developed at Light stream Pictures is slated to be released sometime in 2011.