Videos Show Interrogation of Ex-Cop | NBC Southern California

Videos Show Interrogation of Ex-Cop

The interview ends with a "shocked" Stephanie Lazarus in handcuffs

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    New videos published Tuesday show LAPD detectives interrogating a former police officer accused of murder.

    Stephanie Lazarus, an ex-cop, is accused of murder in the February 1986 shooting death of Sherri Rasmussen, a hospital nursing director who married Lazarus' former boyfriend, John Ruetten.

    The LAPD used a ruse to get Lazarus to answer questions in the case, the Los Angeles Times reported:

    Around 6:40 on the morning on June 5, Det. Daniel Jaramillo from the LAPD's Robbery-Homicide Division approached Lazarus at her desk in the department's headquarters and asked her to accompany him downstairs to the department's jail facility, where she would not be able to bring her gun. He told Lazarus he needed her help interrogating a man who claimed to have information on stolen art, which was Lazarus' specialty.

    Lazarus Interview, Part 1: "What's This All About?"

    [LA] Lazarus Interview, Part 1: "What's This All About?"
    Former officer Stephanie Lazarus is asked whether she knew John Ruetten and whether she ever met his wife.
    (Published Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2010)

    Once there, to Lazarus's surprise, detectives began questioning her about her relationship to Rasmussen. At first, Lazarus said she could not recall meeting Rasmussen but after continued questioning, she admitted she may have met her at a hospital.

    During the interrogation, Lazarus expressed shock that she was being considered as a suspect and was reluctant to offer a DNA sample when asked by detectives.

    "You're accusing me of this? Is that what you're saying?" Lazarus said. "I can't believe this."

    Lazarus Interview: "Do I Need to Get a Lawyer?"

    [LA] Lazarus Interview: "Do I Need to Get a Lawyer?"
    Moments after leaving the interview room, former cop Stephanie Lazarus is escorted back in wearing handcuffs.
    (Published Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2010)

    Lazarus was arrested as she left.

    Authorities have said Lazarus was tied to Rasmussen's killing by a DNA match of saliva taken from a bite mark on the victim's arm.

    Lazarus was not a suspect in 1986 because detectives believed two robbers who had attacked another woman in the area were to blame. The case file, however, did mention Lazarus because of her relationship with Ruetten.

    Her trial is expected to begin this spring.

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