In 1989, Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies dispersed a large bridal shower at the home of a Samoan-American family in Cerritos. Eleven deputies and three dozen party guests were injured in the incident.
Deputies said the party had gotten out of hand, and that they were greeted with a shower of rocks and bottles. Family members said law enforcement used excessive force, roughing them up and striking them after they had already been subdued on the ground. What's more, there was an amateur video shot by a neighbor to support their claims.
The Samoan family sued and years of litigation followed, culminating in a $25 million payout. It was the largest such judgment against police in California history, and it decimated the Liability Trust Fund, which is financed by cities (including Cerritos and La Cañada Flintridge) that contract for services with the county of Los Angeles.