Former LAPD commander accused of misconduct in Les Moonves sex-assault investigation

ByABC7.com staff via KABC logo
Thursday, November 3, 2022
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A former LAPD captain allegedly tried to help CBS cover up sex-assault allegations against Les Moonves, according to new reports.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- As CBS and former chief executive Les Moonves agree to a multimillion-dollar settlement related to sexual-assault allegations, new claims are emerging about a high-ranking LAPD officer helping to cover up the alleged crimes.

Cory Palka was a former captain at the LAPD's Hollywood station and later a commander before he retired in early 2021 after 34 years with the department.

A new report alleges Palka tipped off Moonves and CBS about sexual-assault allegations and provided them with a copy of the victim's confidential report in November 2017.

The information is emerging as the New York Attorney General's office announces a settlement that requires Moonves and CBS to pay $30.5 million to shareholders. And CBS must reform its human resource practices around sexual harassment.

CBS fired Moonves almost four years ago - after two law firms conducted an investigation into sexual misconduct allegations.

The New York Attorney General's office says a senior CBS executive who knew of the allegations sold millions of dollars in stock before the allegations became public.

Palka had worked providing security for Moonves for the Grammys for six years. He left a voicemail for a CBS executive saying: "I know we haven't talked in a while. I am a captain at LAPD Hollywood. Somebody walked in the station about a couple hours ago and made allegations against your boss regarding a sexual assault. It's confidential, as you know, but call me, and I can give you some of the details and let you know what the allegation is before it goes to the media or gets out..."

Palka then allegedly gave a copy of the confidential police report to CBS so they could research the victim and her family.

According to the attorney general's release he also told them he would tell the investigating officer to admonish the victim not to speak to the media.

The department is now calling Palka's alleged actions appalling.

LAPD Chief Michel Moore put out this statement: "What is most appalling is the alleged breach of trust of a victim of sexual assault, who is among the most vulnerable, by a member of the LAPD. This erodes the public trust and is not reflective of our values as an organization."

Palka had been a relatively high-profile commanding officer with the department, the subject of media interviews on multiple occasions. During one particularly poignant moment he won praise for kneeling down alongside protesters who were angry over the issue of police misconduct and the killing of George Floyd.

Eyewitness News interviewed Palka in late 2020 as he prepared to leave the department.

According to the New York AG's report, Palka personally met with Moonves to update him on the investigation, reassuring him the case was a "reject."

After the CBS chief resigned Palka sent him a message saying ".. I will always stand with, by and pledge my allegiance to you. You have embodied leadership, class and the highest of character through all of this. With upmost respect."

The LAPD says it is cooperating with the New York and California attorney generals' offices as they investigate Palka's alleged actions.

The department is also launching its own investigation.

"An internal affairs investigation has been generated to go through that conduct and ensure that there aren't any other people involved or anything else that we would need to addressed in relation to this incident," LAPD Capt. Kelly Muniz told Eyewitness News.

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