Crime & Justice

Torrance police chief suspended over alleged offensive remarks

Torrance Police Chief Mark Matsuda in a screenshot of a video from the Torrance Police Department Facebook page.
Torrance Police Chief Mark Matsuda in a screenshot of a video from the Torrance Police Department Facebook page.
Torrance PD Facebook page

The Torrance police chief has been suspended over allegations that he made remarks against women, blacks, gays and Muslims.

Torrance Chief Mark Matsuda told the Daily Breeze Friday that he's been off duty and won't return until Feb. 13.

He says he was relieved of duty after the Los Angeles suburb opened an independent investigation in October. The results have been forwarded to the city manager.

Matsuda declined to discuss the allegations.

The Breeze said it had received emails and letters, apparently from police officers, alleging that Matsuda had made "constant" hostile remarks.

Matsuda was appointed to the $251,000-a-year job in 2014. He's the city's first Asian-American chief and runs a department with a $75 million budget that polices a city of about 150,000 people.

Deputy Chief Bernard Anderson is temporarily heading the force. When reached by KPCC, Anderson declined to comment on Matsuda, but sent this statement:

"I can assure the community that the dedicated men and women of the Torrance Police Department are executing our public safety mission effectively...continually focusing on our core values and the high level of service our community deserves."

This story has been updated.