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LAPD police commission reserves comment at meeting on use of force incidents

Erika Aguilar/KPCC

The LAPD Police Commissioners Board hears a report from the Inspector General about officer-involved shootings and assaults on officers. July 2012.

Commissioners at Tuesday’s LAPD police commission meeting had little comment about the three recent rough arrests made by Los Angeles police.

In fact, Commissioner Robert Saltzman said he was “pleased with the department’s response, particularly the community meetings.

LAPD captains at each of the 21 police stations throughout the city will be responsible for scheduling their own community meeting at their respective station, according to LAPD media representatives. The public will be invited to ask questions about the three use-of-force arrests and LAPD's force policy.

No official schedule has been released.

Police Chief Charlie Beck did use Monday's meeting to shuffle a few of his top commanders around, including moving a captain from the Van Nuys division to the Southwest. These shifts come as a result of Beck’s decision to remove the Foothill commander, Capt. Joseph Hilter, from his commanding post and downgrade his salary.

Beck told the police commission he has met with every LAPD commanding officer in the city to discuss the three use-of-force incidents and their commanding responsibilities regarding force. 

“Obviously, we have a ways to go. We’re taking a number of steps to ensure public confidence and also to ensure that these investigations take place appropriately and thoroughly,” Beck said during his regular report to the police commission.

Other discussions that took place during the police commission was focused on an audit done on how command staff at the South Bureau completed and reviewed arrests and search reports written by the gang enforcement unit.

The audit showed that some South Bureau officers failed to fully complete detention logs for suspects arrested, omitted date, time, location or reason for certain suspect “strip” searches, and property receipts were not given to some suspects arrested whose personal belongings were seized.

Department internal auditors said most of the findings point to a lack of attention to detail. 

Cmdr. Bob Green said he was disappointed in the results. He said the leadership gang unit at Southwest has had a “complete change over” with multiple lieutenant vacancies and his leadership staff has been spread too thin. Cmdr. Green is supposed to report back to the police commission in three months to update them on progress on getting commanders to complete paperwork more thoroughly.

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