The Cop That Killed Napster COO Milt Olin Will Not be Charged…

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Subpoenaed phone records from Verizon Wireless now show that the officer, Deputy Andrew Francis Wood, was actively texting with his wife in the moments immediately before mauling former Napster executive Milt Olin.  In total, nine separate personal text messages were recorded in the minutes leading up to Olin’s death, including one message recorded less than one minute prior.

Olin was cycling on the curvy Mulholland Drive in Los Angeles on the afternoon of December 8th, 2013, when officer Wood veered into the bicycle lane and struck Olin, killing him almost immediately.  Olin was instantly lunged from his bicycle to his death.

Wood will not be charged for the mauling death, and is now back on the job.


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In an official evaluation by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office (top page above; full document here), witnesses indicated that Wood veered into the bicycle lane because of sloppy, distracted driving.  Wood was not pursuing another vehicle, and was not actively responding to an emergency.   Wood did not even apply the brakes prior to the collision, and said he didn’t even see Olin prior to the accident (at 1:05 pm in the sunny afternoon).

Which makes sense, given this information revealed on page three of the same report (the collision occurred at 1:05 pm):


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In a discussion this week with the Los Angeles Times, Olin family attorney Bruce Broillet said that the Los Angeles Police Department has denied any access to critical forensic evidence from the patrol car and scene.  That includes any access to a black box or dashcam (if that even existed at the time of the crash).  Furthermore, the family has not been given access to critical forensic evidence collected from the crash scene by LAPD officers.

The family is pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit.  “The family is deeply frustrated by the lack of information coming out of the Sheriff’s Department’s investigation,” Broillet offered in a statement. “We intend to seek justice for Milton Olin and his loved ones.”

 The complete Charge Evaluation Worksheet from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office can be found here


64 Responses

  1. Anonymous

    Cops can kill anybody they want for any reason they want, are we surprised by this?

    • Jeff

      Yes, surprised. And if you are not surprised, you are part of the problem. Your attitude of smugness hints at a lack of humanity, but you probably think it makes you sassy and smart and cool. What if Milton Olin were your own kin? What if you were in the presence of Milton Olin’s family (which of course you are, given that you are commenting on the internet). Would you feel it appropriate to exhibit such demeaning smugness?

      • Frink

        Or… cops get away with it all the time and nobody seems to notice. And if you’re just now noticing, then YOU are part of the problem.

      • Anonymous

        Talk about misdirected anger! It’s obvious that this person who posted anonymously was being sarcastic so why do you have to take your bullshit out on them? This is a fucked situation and this is happening more and more. Police officers should be role models and more often they’re nothing but a bunch of room temperature IQed goons with guns. Welcome to the police state of America! Watch your backs and keep your mouths shut! George Orwell predicted well.

      • steve

        not only would I say it to his face and his family, I would run him over with the car so he knows how it feels.

  2. Anonymous

    self drive cars already… lets go on this!

    sitting around pricking around doing a bunch of lame ish…

    i know i certainly cant take it much longer… being fried like a frog in a pot of boiling water aint my idea of being treated like a respected and desired citizen person asset…

    i mean when you feelin froggy leap is kind of over cause there aint nowhere to leap to no mo cause its all locked up everywhere…

    pardon my ebonical speech!


  3. GGG

    Not that this is surprising, but it’s still really fucked up. Glad police continue to have immunity when it comes to killing people.

  4. Anonymous

    shit i almost got nabbed by undercover the other day not even for texting, just for having my smartphone being my music player in my car and trying to change a song, almost wrote me up and they get to just run people over, and instead theyll probably just up the fine or create tighter laws to screw their assets over because of it, to grease their citizens even more…

    stupid dinosaur systems, no need for fire sales, its demise is completely and fully inevitable…


  5. William Noah

    So sad, just tie it up in the court room. Bring cyclists and citizens together and demand justice.

  6. Anonymous

    so on the road you would assume cops too be the best drivers, an example of how to drive right? nope speeding careless distracting driving , come on now poor man RIP.

  7. Paul Resnikoff

    I believe these sorts of incidents are very destructive for law enforcement in the United States. The report clearly states that a major law was violated, and nowhere does the law state that police officers are immune from accidents resulting from personal, non-work text messages (if this had been an emergency text related to a crime, it would have been different). But this is simple negligence, and any civilian would be charged accordingly for manslaughter.

    The unwillingness of the department to share details from the crime scene magnifies the suspicion.

    A lot of Americans that I know — who pay taxes, work decent jobs, have kids, and many of whom are successful — have a deep distrust and distaste for law enforcement. They are happy that policing exists, for sure, but also feel the focus and resources are often on harassing citizens for extremely minor offenses as a form of tax. But, a tax for what, more officers to over-police good citizens driving 40 mph in a 35?

    But the lack of accountability, lack of transparency, double standards, and entire sense of being completely above the law is a far more pernicious problem.

    Let’s just be happy this incident occurred in a well-to-do neighborhood, not a poverty-stricken area where anger has obviously hit a boiling point. There is real reform needed.

    • LA Cyclist

      Paul, I feel you are on our side on this matter, but the difference between going 35 mph and 45 mph is actually pretty drastic if you look at the figures. As a cycling instructor and bike commuter I have done the research into crash fatalities and survivability and what I found was pretty enlightening.

      Survival rates for car collisions: 80% survival rate at 25 mph, 50% at 35 mph, and 15% survival at 45 mph.

      That’s why most urban speed limits are currently 35 mph. The literal difference between life and death for vulnerable road users is a measly 10mph. We (alternative transportation advocates) are pushing for lowering speed limits even further.

      Public safety must supersede personal convenience.

      I’ve had many discussions with people about why speed limits are what they are and many folks seem to think they are arbitrary nuisances; however there is actual real science behind limiting speed.

      • Paul Resnikoff

        I’d never considered that side of the argument, or been presented those statistics. So thanks for that. Actually, I used to cycle everywhere in Los Angeles (100+ miles weekly), and worked out routes between major points like Burbank and Santa Monica that largely used side-streets. I never had a problem, even a close call really — though, I will say a few drivers would toy with me for kicks (by driving by very close, stopping short in front of me, etc., not really a fun game).

        On the west side, within the beach communities especially, there’s far greater deference and respect for bikers. And a lot more bikers.

        But ultimately I pulled back on it, as it is really dangerous. The downsides are really down – just one scrape and you’re in a lot of trouble. I’m not saying I’ve given up urban cycling in LA, just that I’ve curtailed it by a major percentage.

        This incident involving Olin reminds me why.

  8. Nathanael

    The real question is. Does the police officer who was distracted, like to ride bikes? And if yes, if I was to hit him why being destracted by an email from my boss in the Taliban, would I get off?

  9. Red Barber

    Paul, Your report is very biased!!!!! Here are the true facts below!!!! Please note the last sentence!

    Wood entered the bicycle lane as a result of inattention caused by typing into his (Mobile Digital Computer),” according to the declination letter prepared by the Justice System Integrity Division of the District Attorney’s Office and released Wednesday. “He was responding to a deputy who was inquiring whether the fire investigation had been completed. Since Wood was acting within the course and scope of his duties when he began to type his response, under Vehicle Code section 23123.5, he acted lawfully.”
    The law does not prohibit officers from using an electronic wireless communications device in the performance of their duties, according to the letter. Furthermore, prosecutors said it was “reasonable” that Wood would have felt that an immediate response was necessary so that a Calabasas deputy wouldn’t unnecessarily respond to the high school.

    To establish the crime of vehicular manslaughter, prosecutors would have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Wood was criminally negligent. While GPS records show the deputy was driving three miles per hour over the speed limit prior to the collision, investigators could not determine his speed at the time of impact. And while Wood was texting shortly before the collision, there was no evidence he was texting or doing anything else that would have distracted him at the time of the collision, according to the letter.

    In fact, evidence indicates Wood’s personal cellphone was only in use while his patrol car was not in motion, the letter stated.

    • Paul Resnikoff

      Red Barber,

      Perhaps there needs to be more investigation here. The report states that Wood was in motion at 1:04 pm, and that he sent a text to his wife at 1:04 pm. So, maybe he sent the text while stopped at 1:04 pm, then in the same minute started driving, then at 1:05 pm struck Milt Olin? I think that’s the only possibility here that would exonerate Wood of liability.

      Perhaps there are GPS or travel records that are that time-specific.

    • Ron

      Are you saying the law allows officers to tap away on “official” equipment while driving if it’s job-related? Then that law needs to be changed, now. If that is in fact the law however, then I guess he is home-free. Although we all see police committing moving violations (speeding, U-turns, running red lights for convenience/not emergency) frequently…because they can.

    • Darryl Ballantyne

      You are all correct to an extent.

      Milt was our lawyer for nearly a decade and a dear friend; I miss him very much. I am angered that there will be no charges in this case, for, quite frankly, bullshit reasons.

      Paul, the GPS records are in fact time coded (details are in the report). It is in fact clear that he wasn’t texting when he hit Milt. What he WAS doing, though, was typing in to his on board computer responding to a message there.

      For a normal person, this would fall under the same laws as texting and he would be in violation of those laws. However, Ron, a specific provision DOES exempt law enforcement and emergency personnel in this scenario, so he legitimately was not violating the law in this case.

      HOWEVER, not violating the law should not exempt ANYONE from responsibility in vehicular manslaughter. For example, it is completely legal for me to argue with my (non-existent) wife while driving, BUT if I become distracted and cause a crash, run over pedestrians, OR KILL SOMEONE ON A BIKE, I am STILL negligent and I have STILL committed vehicular manslaughter. What CAUSED me to be distracted is, in fact, IRRELEVANT. The exemption in the law for him should really only exempt him from getting a ticket, NOT from other charges.

      The facts in this case clearly dictate that there should be a charge…but obviously when you’re forced to rely on an internal investigation, that becomes highly unlikely.

      Sorry for the caps, but this situation makes me angry. I miss Milt.

      • vJack

        Thank you Darryl.

        Police Officers must be held responsible for their actions. Period.

      • Jerry

        It would be interesting to see what was being typed in the computer at that tragic moment… or if I the characters were entered in the seconds following the impact. The phone and cars GPS should sync, ie both recorded an abrupt stop. I don’t have the high integrity of most all cops (yah I stand by that) and my instincts would to be to clack away some keystrokes if I knew I just hit someone.

        The other point is how important was what he was typing in the computer that he put off long enough to be texting on the phone for the several minutes?

        I just started road biking and in a word it’s a crapshoot. The fact this tragedy was by a cop is sad because I’m betting if he’s like most he’s done an enormous amount of good for the community.

  10. danwriter

    “Maul?” Odd choice of verb here. You make it sound as though the deputy clawed him to death.

  11. Jughead

    Nice hatchet job to rile the ignorant, Paul. Not a single mention that it might have been simply an accident.

    And–for all you cop haters–you would be the 1st to dial 911 if you needed help. And, I bet all of you hypocrites text while driving, just like the officer.

    Smug, intellectual dishonest pukes make me sick. America is full of dirtballs, and some live on this forum.

    • Ron

      Cops are brave and vital public servants we all depend on as you point out, and in their personal conduct on duty, many cops have a very cavalier approach to the laws and regulations the rest of us are expected to live by, and that they are charged (and paid by taxpayers) to enforce. It should be possible to hold both thoughts in your head at the same time.

    • Willis

      Get real. An accident is one where the driver is going the speed limit and not distracted.

    • GGG

      Of course we’d call 911. That doesn’t change the fact that there’s a lot of real shitty cops out there, and they tend to get away with shit anybody else would be thrown in jail for. Putting on a uniform doesn’t make one a good person.

  12. LA Cyclist

    As a member of the LACBC, every day bicycle commuter and music biz employee, this one hit extra close to home; but it’s not an isolated incident.

    Cyclists and peds are being mowed down by distracted, speeding drivers every day and we’re just about ready to storm city hall to demand justice. In most cases all the driver has to say is ” Oops I didn’t see him” and they get off with a ticket and maybe a 6 month license suspension at most. For KILLING SOMEONE. Often, not even a ticket. Very rare for any to be prosecuted. Usually requires a hit and run or DUI to be tacked on for them to even bother to seek charges.

    So in essence, if you want to kill someone, use your car. Nothing will happen to you.

    • Jughead

      The roads were designed for cars, not bike nazis.

      Sad the guy perished, but bike nazis refuse to accept reality.

      • LA Cyclist

        Lol. Roads are for people. The mode of transport they choose is trivial.

        What’s your counter-argument? That motorists pay for roads via ‘road taxes’?

        You need to educate yourself my friend.

        • Jughead

          Car v. bike = roadkill. Got it?

          Roads are for cars. Bike at your own risk–or, better yet—bike where there are no friggin cars.

          Bike nazis are the worst. Entitled snots. And, there stupid little outfits are gay.

  13. Jughead

    You guys want to hang this guy for doing EXACTLY what most of you do–talk on the phone and text while driving.

    And, you do it with a rank air of political correctness. Pathetic.

    • Danny

      The difference here JUGHEAD, is that when we do it, we get the full and well deserved punishment of the law, when they do it, they get away with it. I understand that with a JUG for a head it must be difficult to think things out correctly, so we will forgive you for your ignorant rant!

    • GGG

      I take the subway or cabs, but the point is if one of us DID do this, we’d be in jail right now.

  14. Danny

    I would like to know if anybody who would come to this murderers defense would feel the same way if they killed one of your family members. Or think about it, if you would of been the one who hit the cyclist under the same circumstances, would you have gotten away with it? ENOUGH of making up excuses for murderers with a gun and a badge who know they can get away with murder! If you don’t actively join the pushback movement, you could be their next victim!

    • Jughead

      “murderer”—-hahaha—got hysteria much?

      A tragic accident. Muslims murder, this guy made a mistake. And, he’ll probably have a hefty judgment against him in civil court.

      But–really–murderer? Christ–knee jerk BS is rampant on this forum.

      • Jerry

        You had me until the ignorant ethnic statement. Looks like the most inappropriate and relatively inaccurate statement up here.

  15. Sickened

    You fucking liberals. Can’t fix the government OR the music industry… no wonder I’m giving this industry the finger!

    Innocent until proven guilty…without a reasonable doubt! I hope you fucking people never have to enter a courtroom with such weak evidence.

    Furthermore, cyclists want to be treated with more respected and treated like motorists yet I CONSTANTLY see cyclists with ZERO regard for ANY rules of the road.

    • Darryl Ballantyne

      Your post is irrelevant. Just because some cyclists disobey the law does not mean that it’s OK Milt was killed. Milt was, by ALL accounts, obeying the law completely while riding in the bike lane; Wood drove through the bike lane and killed him.

      If a motorist disobeys the law and kills someone, they are responsible. If they are distracted and kill someone, they are responsible. Period. Just because SOME people on bikes disobey laws does not mean it is OK to commit vehicular manslaughter.

      • Jughead

        “Vehicular manslaughter” in California does not apply to every vehicular death–some are just damn happenstance. You know-it-alls want to hang him simply because he was a cop, and it makes you feel important to rant against authority.

        Don’t worry–the cop and his insurance company will have to pay up in the civil suit. Then, you guys can feel really good about life and go back to texting while you drive.

        • Darryl Ballantyne

          I would want him to be punished regardless of him being a cop or not – the only relevance of him being a cop in this case is it seems to be what’s getting him off.

          Vehicular manslaughter applies when there is negligence causing death. That’s pretty cut and dried in this case.

          I’m Canadian, and I know how to Google, so let me help you out:

          And a civil suit, while it will help the family financially, doesn’t really equate to justice for me.

          Lastly – if you’re going to be such a douchebag in these comments, at least have the balls to do it under your real name. Your position is appalling and illogical.

          • Sickened...Again.

            Bullshit! The only reason this case received attention is because it was a fucking cop! That’s the only reason you’re even reading it on DMN…

            Jughead…carry on.

            What the hell does it matter if I use my real name for!? You gonna “connect” with me or something? Is it really going to make this fucked up conversation more valid?

          • Darryl Ballantyne

            I want you to take ownership of your comments. Hiding behind anonymity is quite cowardly.

            And the reason I’m reading about it on DMN also has nothing to do with it being a cop – it has everything to do with it being Milt. If a civilian had killed him, it would still be on DMN.

            My personal connection to Milt and his family means that I am more vocal about this particular case, and I care much more about the outcome. But even if I didn’t know the victim, the facts dictate the same conclusion regardless of personal feelings.

            Your arguments are, quite frankly, terrible and illogical.

          • Sickened...Again.

            I just saw the personal connection with this from you earlier posts. Right there, you shows zero bias in this case.

            Sorry for you loss.

          • GGG

            You are a moron. The cop drove into the bike lane while distracted and killed a guy. A cop. The guy who can give tickets for distracted driving. That guy. Killed another guy because he was distracted while driving.

    • Willis

      We aren’t talking about “cyclists” here. We are talking about a single incident where the facts state that the cop was distracted and the cyclist was in the designated bike lane.

  16. doubleR

    Judging by comments posted, the most appropriate screen name ever is “Jughead.”

  17. Allan

    When a bike rider riding IN A BIKE LANE in BROAD DAYLIGHT is witnessed to be struck by a car that did not have a major mechanical failure, the driver of the car WAS NEGLIGENT and should be prosecuted accordingly. How can anyone possibly argue otherwise?

      • Sickened...Again.

        JH, he stayed at a Holiday Inn Express and watched Judge Judy there. I’m done. Wasted enough time on here today. JH, all yours.

  18. Ευχαριστώ

    Να και μια φορά που ένας μπάτσος έκανε κάτι χρήσιμο σε αυτή τη χώρα.

  19. Bruce N. Goren

    From the photos I’ve seen in the newspapers on-line, it appears that officer Wood did not simply drift a few inches to the right and strike Olin from behind. No, this was much more serious – when the road curved right he failed to steer, continued straight, crossed the center divider and struck Olin head-on in the opposite bike lane! Crazy wrong! Just because the officer is allowed by statute to type does not exempt him from the broader regulations against driving distracted and not killing people. The assumption (I’m guessing) is that an officer, as a professional driver, can simultaneously communicate via keyboard and drive safely without becoming distracted. Clearly this officer failed to maintain the minimum required attention to his driving task to operate the vehicle safely and should be prosecuted.

    • Bruce N.+Goren

      Oops, just read the official report, I’m wrong about the directions, not head-on, but he in fact failed to steer and did not stay in his lane. Sorry for the inaccurate speculation.

  20. Mike

    Why in Hell’s name are deputies allowed to carry cell phones with them on duty?? It’s grounds for firing here.

  21. missy

    We had a case close to this here where I live. The head of the police department was drunk drinking and ran a stop sign hitting a FedEx truck putting the drive of the truck in critical condition. the brother of the victim Showed up and could smell alcohol on the police officer but the police officer who was on the seen said it was from the ambulance not the drunk driver. The officer also didn’t give a breathalyzer test. The police officer that did the drunk driving was to be married to another officer and so they didn’t want her getting in trouble. Luckily the town council fired her. But the FedEx drive is still pretty banged up and had it been another civilian you know they would have ended up in jail or prison and all kinds of shit. And the government wonders why people hate and don’t trust the law/government. They have become corrupt, greedy bastards that are too power hungry and abuse the power they have been given.