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Comedian tells racist jokes at law enforcement show, receives plaque

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POSTED July 25, 2013 9:03 p.m.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Sheriff Lee Baca was among hundreds of uniformed officers who were told a string of racist and raunchy jokes by a comedian hired to entertain at a law enforcement event this week.

The county's top sheriff even thanked comedian Edwin San Juan after his performance and gave him a plaque at Wednesday's Sheriff's Day Luncheon, The Los Angeles Times reported.

Spokesman Steve Whitmore said officials are figuring out how the comedian was vetted to implement safeguards to prevent such an incident from happening again.

"It's a lesson learned," Whitmore said. "It's not gonna happen again."

The luncheon wasn't an official Sheriff's Department event.

San Juan told KABC-TV he poked fun at all the different races at the event equally.

"I gazed (into) the crowd and it was all different races so I just poked fun of everybody equally, you know what I mean? How I'd normally do it. And as soon as I addressed it, the tension kind of dropped and I felt it was kind of cool and smooth," said San Juan, adding that several people from the audience congratulated him after the performance.

"It's a comedy show, they hired me for that, know what I mean? But I don't think in any way the stuff that I said reflects the Sheriff's Department. It's separate things, they booked me for entertainment," San Juan said.

 

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