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Rancho Dominguez, California

Rancho Dominguez, also known as East Compton, is an area with a rich history in the development of Los Angeles.  It is located between north Long Beach and Carson.  Warehouses and trucking concerns dominate the area now, although in the past, it was an agricultural area where some of the first Spanish settled in Los Angeles.

Relatively few people, estimated at less than 10,000, live in this small area surrounding Atlantic Avenue and just north of Alondra Boulevard, but south of the City of Lynwood.  To the east is the City of Paramount.  The city is over 70% Hispanic.

Rancho Dominguez is mainly patrolled by the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, however the Lynwood Sheriff’s Department patrols the eastern section of Rancho Dominguez.  Much of Rancho Dominguez consists of warehouses and textile factories, although there certainly are homes, condominiums, apartments and smaller stores, too.

Legal disputes arising in Rancho Dominguez are heard in the Compton Superior Court. Such cases, both criminal and civil, draw jurors from Compton, Paramount, Lynwood and Long Beach, but also as far away as Torrance, Redondo Beach, Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach, El Segundo, Hawthorne, Lawndale, West Carson, Rancho Palos Verdes, Rolling Hills, Rolling Hills Estates, Lomita, parts of Harbor City and even Palos Verdes Estates. 

Our office regularly has cases out of the Compton courthouse.  We are experienced with most all of the judges, almost all of the district attorneys assigned to this courthouse.  There are no city prosecutors assigned to the Compton Courthouse. 

The types of cases that we see arising out of this mostly industrial area are domestic violence matters, shoplifting, drug sales, occasionally a DUI and prostitution matters.  It is an area with very few homes, but quite a bit of traffic passing through.  For this reason, there are DUI’s, drug sales and prostitution matters, especially along Long Beach Boulevard and, less so along Atlantic Avenue, which can be a bee-hive of all types of illegal activity.  Human trafficking has been suspected to take place along these two streets.

In the prostitution cases that we have seen in this area, it is usually in the form of a sting operation using police decoys posing as prostitutes and wearing a wire transmitter to a nearby police officer monitoring the situation.  Usually, the prostitutes will wave down a passing motorist who circles back to pull alongside the curb and talk with the decoy. 

Most of these sting operations take place outside Rancho Dominguez.  The police decoy will usually directs the “john” to a nearby hotel or just off the main street (often to Bullis Street if originally along Long Beach Boulevard), where the man is instructed to meet the woman to consummate the agreement.  Just as he heads up the stairs to the room or drives around the corner, police surround the suspect and cite or even arrest him.

DUI arrests usually are not so dramatic, but are common in this area, especially along the 91 Freeway heading westbound (south of Rancho Dominguez) if police are in the area and on the lookout of other activity anyways. 

Arrests for drug sales are usually made just because an individual is seen loitering in the area and police stop to perform a “welfare-safety” check.  The check quickly turns into a scavenger hunt for any minor hint that the person may have a weapon.  The police then perform and Terry v. Ohio frisk “for officer safety” and find drugs that are termed for sales.  The arrest is then made and, in facts, sometimes the individual (our future client) even admits to sales, especially if a large amount of cash, a digital scale, multiple small baggies and a pay-owe sheet is found by police.

Our office has also handled a few street racing cases arising in Rancho Dominguez.

If one has a case arising out of the Rancho Dominguez area, the Compton Courthouse will be the venue for the case.  Be sure to bring $7 for parking and leave early, as the lines outside the courthouse are quite long and the elevators are slow.

For more information about the about common cases that one might face if arrested in this city, click on the following articles:
  1. What Punishment Do I Face for a Charge of Prostitution?
  2. What Punishment Do I Face for Possession of Marijuana?
  3. Conviction Overturned for Felon in Possession of Firearm – Constructive Possession Not Proven
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