Long Beach police chief taking top job at Oakland PD

A large city in Los Angeles County is losing its top cop. This time, it’s Chief Anthony Batts of the Long Beach Police Department. KPCC’s Cheryl Devall says he’s going to lead the department in Oakland.

Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums surprised many people in Long Beach when he issued a release that announced Anthony Batts as his city’s next police chief. The Northern California job has been vacant since the previous chief resigned in February.

Batts has led the Long Beach police department for seven years. He’ll move from a city he’s tried to make one of California’s safest to one that’s notorious for gun violence.

In March, a convicted felon shot and killed four Oakland police on one night. Batts told the Long Beach Press-Telegram that the challenge of delivering civic peace to Oakland compelled him to want the chief’s job there. Now Long Beach, California’s fifth-largest city, will have to replace its police and fire chiefs in short order.

This is the second time in as many weeks that a Southland police chief has announced his departure. Last week, William Bratton of the LAPD said he’ll leave for an executive job with a global security company.

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