Police Commission President Steve Soboroff’s Comments Regarding Newton Division Officer Involved Shooting Of August 11, 2014

Los Angeles - On Tuesday, June 9, 2015, Police Commission President Steve Soboroff stated the following:

"This morning, my fellow Police Commissioners and I completed the long and extremely difficult task of carefully reviewing and making a decision regarding the use of force incident which resulted in the death of Mr. Ezell Ford, 25 years of age, on August 11, 2014.

This is a tragedy for all involved, the family, relatives, loved ones and friends of Mr. Ford, as well as the involved police officers. To the Ford family, my fellow Police Commissioners and I extend our sincere sympathies for your profound loss.

I would like to give a brief review of the investigative process that took place in this investigation, and in all deadly use of force incidents involving Los Angeles Police Officers. The investigation into the facts of the events was completed by the Los Angeles Police Department Force Investigation Division, which is comprised of very experienced and skilled investigators, in accordance with guidelines that have been in place for a number of years as a result of the past Federal Consent Decree. The completed investigation is presented to the Los Angeles Police Department Use of Force Review Board, which is comprised of Command Staff members of the Department. Upon their review, they make a recommendation to the Chief of Police for his consideration.

The Chief of Police then provides the Police Commission with his analysis of the investigation and recommendations as to the findings in three specific areas: Tactics of the involved officers, Drawing of the Firearm by the involved officers, and the Use of Deadly Force by the involved officers. That document will be available via a California Public Records Request, with the names of the involved officers redacted, this afternoon.

While the Department is conducting its investigation, our Inspector General Alexander Bustamante and members of his staff, on behalf of the Police Commission, are involved in monitoring the investigation from the initial steps of responding to the scene, through attending the Use of Force Review Board. The Inspector General is given unfettered access to all of the investigative materials. The Inspector General provides the Police Commission with an independent analysis and recommendation into the same three areas that the Chief of Police does: Tactics, Drawing, and Use of Deadly Force.

As is the case in all Categorical Use of Force incidents, the Inspector General will have available for public review an Abridged Summary of his analysis of this incident, on behalf of the Police Commission, on the Department website, www.lapdonline.org by the end of the work day today.

The Police Commission has had copies of all of the investigative materials for our review for a period of time which we have all done. This morning, the Police Commission was given a presentation by the Force Investigation Division investigators with a very thorough and complete overview of this investigation. The presentation was followed with a discussion with the Chief of Police and Inspector General relative to their respective analysis of the incident and the three areas of Tactics, Drawing and Use of Deadly Force.

The Los Angeles Police Department has the most extensive investigative processes into use of deadly force incidents in the Country. Our review of this incident has been intensive. This Commission takes its responsibility to the community and the Los Angeles Police Department very seriously when considering incidents in which Los Angeles Police Officers use deadly force. I am confident that we have been presented a very thorough and complete investigation, with analysis provided by skilled and talented members of the Los Angeles Police Department and our Inspector General's office. Our analysis has been deliberate, thoughtful, and compassionate based on our best understanding of the facts.

The recommendation of the Chief of Police for all officers was that their actions were in policy in all three areas.

The recommendation of the Inspector General as it relates to Tactics, was one officer out of policy and one officer in policy. As it relates to the Drawing and Use of Force, the officers' actions were in policy.

Now that this extensive investigation is complete, this civilian oversight body has made our decision on this incident relative to the appropriateness in each of the three areas, Tactics, Drawing and Use of Force.

As it relates to the Tactics in this incident, the Police Commission found Tactical Debrief for both officers, the Tactics employed by one Police Officer III
Administrative Disapproval and one Police Officer II In Policy, No Further Action.

Relating to the Drawing of the Weapon, the Police Commission found that the Drawing of the Weapon by one Police Officer III Administrative Disapproval and one Police Officer II, first drawing Administrative Disapproval and second drawing In Policy, No Further Action.

Regarding the Non-Lethal Use of Force the Police Commission found that the Non-Lethal Use of Force by one Police Officer III was Administrative Disapproval and one Police Officer II In Policy, No Further Action.

Regarding the Use of Force, or firing of the weapon, the Police Commission found that the Use of Force by one Police Officer III was Administrative Disapproval and one Police Officer II In Policy, No Further Action.

Consistent with the Los Angeles City Charter, disciplinary matters relevant to the Administrative Disapproval finding for the involved officers for this case will now be determined by the Chief of Police.

Pursuant to California law, my fellow Commissioners and I, along with those who were present in the closed session meeting, are unable to divulge any of the information discussed during those meetings, including our justification leading to our individual decisions.

The determination as to the criminal culpability for the involved officers is the responsibility of the Los Angeles County District Attorney and not within the authority of the Chief of Police or Police Commission.

This incident has changed all involved in it forever. My fellow Police Commissioners and I clearly understand the grief and loss the Ford family will feel forever, as well as the impact on the involved police officers. Our compassion and thoughts will remain with them."

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Citywide Gun Buyback Nets 746 Guns


Los Angeles: On Saturday, May 9, 2015, 746 firearms were exchanged for Ralph's gift cards. Community members who surrendered their firearms received gift cards valued at $100 for most firearms and $200 for firearms classified as assault rifles.

The Citywide Gun Buyback Program is an initiative of the Mayor's Office Gang Reduction and Youth Development (GRYD) program. Major corporate sponsorship was provided by the Ralph's Corporation. While many in the media covered the event, the primary media partners for this event were KCBS2 / KCAL9.

Modified copy of 20150511_113736Individuals are able to surrender guns to any Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Community Police Station all year long. When bringing a firearm to a police station, please leave the unloaded gun(s) in a locked container or stored in a vehicle trunk. A station front desk officer will assist you with the weapon surrendering process. Please visit the LAPD website at www.lapdonline.org to find the nearest community police station.

For additional information, please contact the LAPD, Media Relations Section at (213) 486-5910.

Weapons Surrendered During May 2015 Gun Buyback
(Source: LAPD GND Gun Unit)

Gun Buyback Site Handgun Shotgun Rifle Assault Total

Van Nuys 171 44 66 16 297
Olympic 203 99 134 13 449
TOTAL 374 143 200 29 746

May 2015 COP Blue Line

Throughout the country, May is observed as Police Memorial Month. We come together to remember each fallen brother and sister in law enforcement who have made the ultimate sacrifice and laid down their lives in service to the City and Country. Their service and sacrifice will never be forgotten. In remembrance of our fallen heroes, please join me in wearing a black mourning band over your badge everyday throughout the month of May.

On Thursday, May 7 at 10am, I invite you to attend our Annual Memorial Ceremony in the courtyard of our Police Headquarters Building. We will express our gratitude and honor the 207 LAPD officers who lost their lives so that others may live life out of harm’s way. Each one is loved and each one is missed. We owe a profound debt to these selfless heroes. We come together as a Department to mourn their unimaginable loss and pray for the people they loved the most. My heart goes out to the survivors, the husbands and wives, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, and grandchildren they loved deeply. You can visit the Department website, www.LAPDOnline.org, and read the stories of officers killed in the line of duty. Please join me as we share these stories and celebrate the lives they led.

At this time when law enforcement has been the focus of national media attention, I want to say THANK YOU. This is more than a job, it is a calling, and it comes with immense risk. We never know what our next call for service may bring. Although gratitude may be seldom, the threats to law enforcement officers and the communities they protect and serve are constant.  We continue to work each day to provide safety and peace to the people of this great City.

Thank you for all you do and be safe,

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Chief Beck Hosts Muslim Community Forum

On the evening of Thursday, April 2, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck hosted the Department’s biannual Muslim Community Forum at the Getty Museum.  Several officials joined Chief Beck for the event, including Assistant United States Attorney Susan J. DeWitt and LAPD Inspector General Alexander Bustamante, along with Muslim community and business leaders and many others. 

20150402_184508In his opening remarks, Chief Beck talked about liberties of the individual as a vital cornerstone for American society.  Continuing in that vein, he went on to discuss the importance of relationships.  “That’s what this forum is about,” said Chief Beck, “making sure we have a relationship [with the community] of trust, openness and frankness.” He emphasized these qualities enable issues to be resolved before they become “unresolvable.”

Chief Beck described an example of the kind of partnership he supports between officers and community members.  He believes Muslims, like other citizens, want to understand their local police officers, and the officers, in turn, want to understand the people they serve.

“Just like a cop on the beat stops by a store, stops by a school, to build relationships with those he may need to either help or be helped by in the future; that’s what we do in 20150402_194720 these forums,” said Chief Beck. “Thank you for being here.”   

April 2015 COP Message

Recently, we have come under sharp criticism regarding the training and abilities of the police officers involved in the fatal shooting of a homeless man on skid row. Critics opined that any four officers who could not take a single unarmed suspect into custody without resorting to deadly force must be incompetent. I will not comment on the specific officers involved in the shooting or whether the tactics employed were proper. As you all know the investigation is far from complete, but I would like to comment on this mistaken belief that physical conflicts are completely predictable and controllable. Los Angeles Police officers are the best trained in the nation, but with that training comes the realization that the dynamics of extreme physical conflict are such that every instance is different, and every situation has the potential to escalate quickly with deadly results. Because policing is done so publically and has been the subject of so many portrayals in works of fiction, everyone believes they are a subject matter expert.

During this time of criticism, take a moment to know that you are supported by the vast majority of the public, and most importantly, by me. I know you are the best trained officers in the world. Continue to do the great work you do every day, and reflect on the number of people you’ve helped throughout your career and the many more who depend on you to keep them safe in the future.

LAPD Reserve Officer Appreciation Month

The month of April marks our annual appreciation and recognition of our Reserve Corps program. Many of you know that almost 40 years ago, I began my law enforcement career as an LAPD reserve officer, and it’s a program I’m very proud of. I know firsthand how reserve officers are a tremendous force multiplier for our Department. Each day reserve officers work different assignments side by side with full-time police officers in a seamless way. The public has no idea reserve officers put their lives on the line for no pay.
Reserve officers are the truest form of community-based policing. The value reserve officers bring to the table is immense, and their hard work and dedication are a priceless benefit to the City. Reserve officers are not content to play a passive role in life. They get involved for the betterment of our community, and by doing so, they live up to the Reserve Corps’ motto, “To be a reserve is to be twice a citizen.” In your daily assignments, as you work alongside a reserve officer, please join me in recognizing and thanking them for their service.

Thank you for all you do and be safe,

Twitter @LAPDChiefBeck
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Class 10-14 Recruit Graduation March 20, 2015

Download COP Grad Speech 3-20-15

March 20, 2015 – A Los Angeles Police Academy graduation ceremony was held this morning at the LAPD Administration Building plaza.

Today’s ceremony featured 26 graduates. Two will be officers for Los Angeles World Airports, and one will be a University of Southern California public safety officer. All recruits have completed 920 hours of training over the course of 24 weeks. In full uniform, the recruits proudly appeared before Chief Charlie Beck and command staff, City officials and a large crowd of spectators.

Chief Beck greatly values his attendance at recruit graduation ceremonies to thank, inform, and congratulate LAPD’s newest officers, along with the countless family members and friends who have supported them. Chief Beck began his address by talking about the LAPD’s “legacy,” which recruits would inherit with their graduation. He pointed out how part of that legacy is the long list of those who have come before, such as Assistant Chief Sandy Jo MacArthur, Commanding Officer of the Office of Administrative Services, who will retire at the end of the month. Thanking Chief MacArthur for her years of dedicated service, he emphasized how much recruits have been her passion. “She has made our training live up to its reputation,” he said.

As always, Chief Beck went on to emphasize the importance of individual character. “Your character is what will keep you safe in this profession,” he said. “Your character is everything; it’s the only thing. And your heart is a shield for that badge.” Chief Beck also talked about the importance of legal authority given to officers by the state, with moral authority as the overarching guidepost. “Be the kind of cop you would want to show up at your house, and do it every day with every contact.” In closing, Chief Beck promised family members he would “protect and serve” the new recruits to the best of his ability.

Recruits will be on patrol in their respective LAPD divisions as soon as this coming Sunday, March 22. As always, at the end of the graduation, the recruits recited their class chant and tossed their caps high into the air, celebrating their success at the police academy and the promise of a rewarding career as LAPD police officers.

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LAPD Chief of Police Charlie Beck’s U.S. Senate Committee Testimonial

Los Angeles: Chief Charlie Beck provides testimony on replacement of Securities Communities program with Priority Enforcement Program. Chief Beck also comments on the implementation of deferred action mechanisms for undocumented immigrants who are charged with low level crimes and pose no threat to national security.

Please find the testimony attached to this news release

Click hear to read Testimony of Chief Charlie Beck: Keeping Families Together


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Mayor Garcetti, Chief Beck End of Year News Conference Jan 12, 2015

Today, Chief Charlie Beck appeared with Mayor Eric Garcetti and others in the Department's end-of-year news conference to discuss an overview of 2014 crime statistics and trends, as well as goals for 2015. Highlights of the event included a planned expansion of the City's Domestic Abuse Response Teams, statistics from last year that continue to support trends for historically low crime rates in the City and discussion of a recent moderate increase in violent crime. Both Mayor Garcetti and Chief Beck also took questions from the media at the end of the news conference.

Podcast 2014 End-of-Year News Conf

"Battle of the Badges" Blood Drive Competition Press Conference Podcast





Los Angeles: The officers, deputies and fire fighters of Los Angeles County and the City of Los Angeles are competing in a friendly contest to raise blood for the American Red Cross of Southern California.  In a campaign launched today that covers several weeks, the men and women in uniform will be leading the call for blood donations to supply the medical facilities of our communities.  Inquiries may be directed to the Southern California American Red Cross at (909) 859-7603.