In late September, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said the city is on pace to end the year with fewer than 300 homicides, about a 75% decline in killings since the peak in the early 1990s. However, while the murder rate is down, three recent shootings have struck Los Angelenos as particularly senseless; in two incidents, an LAPD officer fired the weapon, and in the other, five year old Aaron Shannon Jr. was murdered while playing in his own backyard. Alleged gang members have been arrested in the last case and the first two are under investigation. The challenge of law enforcement has been increased by budget cuts, most recently causing the reassignment of nearly 90 street cops to jailer status in order to run a new jail facility that has been empty due to lack of staffing. Patt talks with the Chief about these issues and more in our monthly Q&A. You can join the conversation – just call in with your concerns.
Chief Charlie Beck, Los Angeles Police Department