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Picking a new Chief
... will this be the dawn of a "new" LAPD?

Bill Murray - 5/07/02


Picking a new Chief of Police

Now that the previous Chief has officially submitted his resignation, the process of picking a new permanent Chief can begin in earnest.

Los Angeles Community Policing thinks it's important to understand the process and how the community can be involved.

The concepts of community based policing will certainly be hot topics. In addition, the issues of LAPD reform, officer retention and recruitment will play a major role.

We'll be learning what's desired from the residents' point of view and hearing how potential candidates respond.

Although the Police Commissioners will ultimately make the actual choices to be offered to the Mayor for us, they are very interested in hearing the community's perspective on the issues and in learning what qualities the people they represent desire in a Chief.

Los Angeles Community Policing supports a comprehensive and energetic dialogue that includes all residents, citywide.

We invite your input here, in the form of Letters to the Editor or Opinion Articles, and we encourage community attendance and participation at the many meetings that will be held over the weeks and months ahead where Public Comment is always sought.

We've also made it easier than ever to join the LACP e-group

While the actual criteria for picking the next Chief has yet to be developed, and the Police Commission says a "Blue Ribbon" panel will be appointed shortly to help design one, the evaluation used for the last Chief may serve as an indication of the model for now.

One can envision imaginative explanations from candidates about how the very structure of the Department may need to change to meet the demands of a 21st Century society.

In case you missed it here's the evaluation that was used to judge the last Chief:


Understanding the process

Ever since April 22nd, when the outgoing Chief announced he'd be dropping any further pursuit of his request for another five year term, going on vacation and tendering his resignation, the LAPD had been led by an acting chief, Deputy Chief Mike Bostic.

The resignation arrived last week, and it went into effect on Saturday evening, May 4, 2002.

Meantime, the five member Police Commission, the communities' main representative in the process, has asked the City to open up a bid process to find the firm that will be awarded the contract to do a national search, both inside and outside the Department.

But the bid process to select this headhunting firm could take a couple of months alone, and the estimate of how long it will take to come up with a short list of candidate names is in the range of six months.

So, the first step was for the Police Commission to select a Temporary Chief, who will serve at the head of the Department in the interim.

On Tuesday, May 7, the Commission asked former Deputy Chief Martin Pomeroy, a 31 year veteran, to come out of retirement and lead the LAPD until a permanent Chief is appointed.


Community involvement

But all of this is just a first step, and the next six months portend to be interesting times. Eventually the Commission will select three names and forward them to the Mayor for his consideration.

During the next half year, the public will get to know at least some of the potential local candidates, although this list may be incomplete because it may not include the names of some of those who are eventually enticed to submit a resume and application through the work done by the headhunting firm.

Still, it will be a pretty good list ...

Several LAPD personnel, past and present, have already declared their potential interest, and, because the Commission has stated the preference will be for someone who is either currently active or has had long term experience in LAPD, it will be well to watch this group.

Here's an incomplete listing of such known candidates all of whom have long term LAPD experience:


Some of these candidates are well know, others not, and Los Angeles Community Policing will try to provide the residents with as much information as possible about these potential new Chiefs of Police.

We'll create a space for each of them to place statements of their goals for LAPD on the site. If requested, we'll be happy to do this for any and all candidates who wish to be included

Eventually, we'd also like to participate in providing a series of town hall style forums, where the public could get to know the top candidates and find out where they stand on the issues they see as important to a 21st Century LAPD redesign of the Department, reform, community based policing, retention and morale, and leadership styles.

Los Angeles Community Policing knows that the Police Commissioners, who will select what they believe are the three best potential candidates, the Mayor, who will make his choice, and the City Council members, who will ratify the new Chief, are all going to be listening to the voice of the community from now on.

We encourage a vigorous public dialogue that may well usher in a "new" LAPD, one in which both the Officers and the public can be proud.


Note: This list will not be shared with any other group, nor will it be used for purposes other than promoting Los Angeles Community Policing.

Yours in service,

Bill Murray
Bobbie Logan

Thank you for supporting your LAPD Officers.

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Los Angeles Community Policing