LOS ANGELES (CBS)  — A motorcycle officer with the Los Angeles Police Department may lose his job after he was found guilty of racial profiling following an internal investigation.

Joel Rubin of the Los Angeles Times was the first to reveal the allegations against Patrick Smith, a white 15-year LAPD veteran assigned to the department’s West Traffic Division.

Rubin told KNX 1070 that Smith — who is white — was pulling over primarily Latino drivers based solely on their race.

“Then taking it a step further, [he was] misidentifying them in the paperwork that officers fill out after traffic stops and labeling them as white,” said Rubin.

Smith used the tactic to conceal the fact that he had a “disproportionate number of stops involving Latino drivers,” Rubin added.

It was the first time the LAPD has found that one of its officers had engaged in racial or ethnic profiling.

Citing sources, Rubin reported that members of the command staff have recommended that Smith be found guilty of profiling Latinos. Police Chief Charlie Beck then reportedly ordered that Smith, 55, be subject to a disciplinary hearing at which the department will push for him to be fired.

In a statement released by the LAPD, Beck said it was too early to comment on the specifics of the case.

“It is important that the public and our officers know how seriously we take Constitutional Policing. Any complaints of racial profiling or racially based policing are thoroughly and impartially investigated,” Beck said.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

Comments (56)
  1. Chuey says:

    Statutory law does not distinguish race. There existed probably cause for a traffic stop, or there was not. Our social need to control the imaginary is what is wrong here…wanna see racial profiling? fly into Tel Aviv..THAT is racial profiling.

    1. Andrew P. says:

      and it works.

  2. rick says:

    In a city where latinos are the Majority,How can that be considered profiling?

  3. Ze Forte says:

    There’s nothing wrong with that… Los Angeles has a disproportionate number of “latinos”, and why should a copy need to classify people by race in the first place. What we really need is immigration enforcement deporting ALL the illegals in Los Angeles.

    1. O_O says:

      You hit the nail on the head, Ze Forte! Even IF the officer was deliberately pulling over Hispanics because they were Hispanics I could CARE LESS! Someone needs to start the sweeping around here in LA, and if that officer took the first step in ridding LA of these illegal hoards, then I’m fine with him wearing a badge! Go Patrick Smith!

      1. Nick says:

        @ 0_0: You must really get off listening to Glen Beck. You and your ilk would make good Clan members. Any aspirations for becoming a Grand Dragon? Keep at it… your comments are amazingly intelligent!

      2. O_O says:

        @ Nick – Well I dunno. Do they let women become Grand Dragons? :/

      3. Johny Chingas says:

        This POS O_O is a real good example of the KKK Group’s philosophy
        Good that you are not one of these IDIOTS working for the LAPD. One less in the list.
        Good JOB Mr. Charlie Beck, The Hispanic Community would greatly appreciated. Sorry for O-O,, One of his KKK member was not a winner this time..IDIOT…

      4. Christina39 says:

        O-O Says = Someone needs to start the sweeping around here in LA, and if that officer took the first step in ridding LA of these illegal hoards, then I’m fine with him wearing a badge! Go Patrick Smith!

        For all the people out there who think I am a nut! Stick around because that is exactly how cops think. That is just the kind of person they hire. They don’t catch criminals. They catch stereotypes.

  4. Diana says:

    ALL Latinos in Los Angeles are not illegals you idiot.

  5. Tyrone says:

    This is Racial profiling at it’s best! had he not lied on the citation’s indicated that the person was white there would be no red flags even if they queestion him and said why are you pulling over so many hispanic/latino or whatevrer name the LAPD want’s to call them all he had to say is HEY IT’S NOT MY FAULT THAT THESE PEOPLE REGARDLESS OF THERE RACE OR SKIN COLOR BROKE THE LAW THATS JUST HOW IT HAPPENED…. JEEZ WHAT AN IDIOT RACIST!!!!

  6. Cilla says:

    Most everyone commenting here seems to have already lost the significant point to the story – this white cop went as far as falsifying the reports to cover his tracks. There was deliberate, malevolent activity at work here with the intention of hiding the pattern of profiling he knew he was guilty of.

    The comments of deporting illegal aliens should not even be a part of this story. Racist cops are and THAT must be checked lest we forget the lessons from the riots of 1992.

    1. O_O says:

      No, Cilla, we get the point. We just happen to think differently than all you illegal drivers. WE WANT YOU OUT!!!

      1. Johny Chingas says:

        O-O… Is that you again… Don’t you have a LIFE?
        Get a job..Are you looking for a job…Are you willing to work for a Hispanic owned Company?

  7. Fern says:

    This officer needed to meet his quota. Most latinos have, illegal or not, a long list of outstanding traffic violations. The whole police dept should keep this practice up if they want to increase city’s revenue.

    1. Cilla says:

      I don’t have a “long list” of any type of violations, nor do most of the Latinos I know. Excuse me for saying so, but you are a fool for believing this should be kept up. The city has better ways of increasing revenue and none of them should involve techniques grounded in racism. To even suggest such a thing makes me believe you’re not even from L.A.

      1. O_O says:

        It’s not racism; it’s a FACT that LA has an over population of Hispanics and I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that a VAST majority of those Hispanics are ILLEGAL. Fact is fact is fact. Don’t make it what it isn’t. Again, another Hispanic playing the race card. *sigh*

    2. Christina39 says:

      OK, Is this lady joking or not. Or is she so stupid she shuold be in a pot? Sometimes I think I just don’t get the jokes on this site.

    3. Christina39 says:

      Excuse me Fern the Goon, but I am not a Latina, but I don’t know where they have a long list of violations. Where do you get your information, from the cops.

  8. Burgerless says:

    All the news services are reporting that the guy who shot Trayvon is white. Aren’t all latinos white? Or are they only white if they do something wrong?

    1. Christina39 says:

      Well idiot WHY ARE YOU ASKING US???? We didn’t change their race on the tickets.

      1. Burgerless says:

        Your meds aren’t working.

  9. Doreen says:

    He was probably just lazy and forgot to mark the box for race (that box definitely needs to be removed, its unneeded) and then later forgot what race they were and just marked white (I’m sure all the boxes must be complete.) The majority in every city is now hispanic. If we want to stop racial problems, then why must we always (even for jobs, schools or apts for rent) mark what race we are? It just further seperates people and singles them out. Hey, since the tickets were wrong, they should all be dismissed as the information is incorrect on the tickets.

    1. Christina39 says:

      Rubin told KNX 1070 that Smith — who is white — was pulling over primarily Latino drivers based solely on their race.

      He wasn’t investigated because he said “guilty” Latinos were ‘White”. He was investigated because he pulled Latinos over “SOLELY” on their race. Then to cover it up, he said they were “White”. Get it!!!

      1. O_O says:

        Uh, who cares if Patrick Smith was pulling them over solely on their race? I sure don’t. He was only helping to clean up the California, if even that can be accomplished. It’s hard to get rid of an infestation.

  10. Alan Hart says:

    Wow, another LAPD officer caught lying. That only puts him in the majority.

  11. asc says:

    in lawenforcement latino is white.

    1. Christina39 says:

      Well you better let the LAPD know this because they are the ones investigating him.

  12. Wake up People says:

    I would have given him a medal. based on the number of illegals that drive unlicensed and without insurance it is a pretty good bet that a hispanic driving a beat up clunker is a more likely offender than a white guy in a suit driving a new BMW. I know you don’t want to hear that because it offends your sensibilities but you also know its true. If you stopped 1000 cars at random, the majority of those people commiting an offense would be hispanic.

    1. O_O says:

      I’m alive and well, Wake Up People, and you also are spot on. The truth hurts some people. What you said is absolutely correct 100%.

  13. Marrty says:

    If the Hispanic is an illegal they will just throw the ticket away therefore the city gets no money and let’s face it that’s what it is all about.

  14. Joe says:

    A white man writing tickets to Latino drivers, he should be fired for not respecting the fact that illegals are a guest of the city of LA and NEVER should be be treated with such disrespect. When will the hate crimes end?

  15. Silly Me says:

    I know a Latina who is illegal she had a kid went on welfare, gets medical ….and now took my husband/ her ex to childsupport court…gets hundreds of dollars and now paid a “Coyote” $7,000 to bring her sister to CA from El Salvador….How’s that for a nice day at work for us hard working people. She damn drives a better car than I do and I’m an American Citizen….The courts do NOT give a damn about Ilegals !!

    1. Silly her says:

      Silly you lol, you are not only showing ignorance this article is not about illegals you should educate yourself so you dont make a stupid you, out of yourself, you took the husband she dumped that shows how stupid you are, and who cares about your sad ass story in the first place?

      1. O_O says:

        Uh, it IS about illegals and the fact that the REAL citizens of LA are sick of it! I’m guessing Patrick Smith is too and we all need to follow in his footsteps. He has the right idea.

    2. Christina39 says:

      what’s with your husband. . Doesn’t he think with the brain between his ears. White men don’t like latino men, but they sure like Latina women.

  16. Ray says:

    When repoting the news of the young black man that was killed in Flordia by the a Latino the main stream media says a white latino killed a black kid. So why is it that a police officer can’t use white but the news media can. I guess to sell the story or is it to make news.

    1. DENISE says:


      1. O_O says:

        Seriously, right? It’s like Obama. Everyone got all jazzed that he’s the first black president. Correction: He’s the first white AND black president. How come mixed black/white people only identify as being black? Sounds a little racist to me.

  17. Silly her says:

    Another ignorant idiot , it just amazes me how poeple like to show their ignorance and brag abou it, i did not know there were “REAL” and fake citizens, you and that guy Patrick Smith are a disgrace to the community to this country and even to your own family

  18. Silly her says:

    Follow his footsteps? you sound like a sheep, they only know how to follow Just like Smith, you are a disgrace . the only FACT here is that some people like to show thier stupidity, i did not know there were “REAL” and fake citizens

  19. Juan says:

    i am as Mexican as it gets. my parents were born in TJ and both came here as kids YES WE ARE LEGAL lol. as far as i know LATIN or LATINO refers to a person from any one of several countrys IE Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico and a bunch of others. last time i checked those are nations so LATIN refers to ones nation of origin not their race. race to me is WHITE, ASIAN AND BLACK everyone falls into one of those. example a person from Japan and a person from China are both ASIAN a person from france and a person from germany is WHITE. and anyone who is black is obviously BLACK no matter where they were born. my heritage is aztec indian and of course spanish which in case you do not know this all MEXICANS are the result of the spanish comming over and putting it to the women of any one of the tribes of indians that were here at the time. people from spain (europe) are WHITE and all the indian tribes that were here were ASIAN dont belive me google it. so a mexican is a cross breed of a white person and an asian person. so you can call your self white or you can call your self asian and be correct on the RACIAL level. so really if this cop was stoping just LATIN people he was not being RACIAL because LATIN is not a race it is an ETHNIC GROUP. and besides west traffic is on Venice Blvd. the area is largely latin so what is so odd about him stoping mostly latin people? if a cop stoped mostly asians in china town would any one question it?? get on with your lifes everyone and drop this race/ethnic junk it serves no ones good

    1. greg says:

      whatever jaun, now get your legal papers and pay taxes and raise your children with YOUR WAGES and not MY TAXES. teach them how to speak english so MY TAXES dont have to be used to teach english to YOUR KIDS

  20. Ur silly MAMA says:

    Silly her ! You are a damn racist…. u do NOT know me to call me ignorant….YOU are the damn idiot ! go back into your trailer and eat a cup o’ noodles… I bet u don’t even have a job….. I most likely make 10 times more money than u and I am a proud Mexican…. You ignorant damn @ss !

  21. Jew Lover says:

    I hate latinos, there are 96% illegal lationo, mexican, savadorian, nigaragioan etc. who come in this country and work illegally and taking the job from legal citizen. They should be deported put in jail and thrown to ocean whatever it takes casue they came here illegally they did not respect the law. why should the law resptect them.

  22. Jew Lover says:

    As a Jew in Los Angeles I just hate illegal aliens, this office did a good job by giving ticket to these nasy, dirty, ignorant Mexican.

    1. Christina39 says:

      I thought Jews were supposed to be tolerant.

      1. O_O says:

        @ Silly her – If you didn’t know there were real and fake citizens then you must be stupid. Or blind. Or both. A REAL citizen is someone who legally should be in this country, who pays their taxes, earns their money legally, pays their own bills by their own hard work, who has legal identification, and who contributes to this society in a positive way. A fake citizen is, well, your family members, those who don’t belong in this country because they came here illegally, those who rip resources off the state because they lie about who they are and where they came from and have anchor baby after anchor baby, who flee the scene of a hit and run because they don’t have proper ID, insurance, or registration as all we LEGAL citizens have to, who come to another country illegally to find an easier way of life because this government makes it easy for them to take advantage of us to wave their own country’s flag in our LEGAL faces all the while refusing to even learn our language. Thank goodness for their anchor babies or they’d never know what the receptionist said at the doctor’s office. O_O

  23. Donna says:

    “It was the first time the LAPD has found that one of its officers had engaged in racial or ethnic profiling.”

    No! It’s the first time admitted it!

    1. O_O says:

      And you know this how???

  24. Silly Me says:

    Silly her – Double up on your Prozac !!

  25. Alice says:

    A latino/latina/hispanic is not a RACE. They are an ethnicity. Nationals of Spain are ‘white’ so this police officer was not a liar. It is just plain racist to catagorize people by a perceived skin hue — as white, black, brown, yellow, red, or purple with orange dots. Catagorize those traffic violators as Caucazoid, Mongoloid, Negroid, and this issue gets resolved. If the latino/latina/ hispanic people are not Caucazoid — they must be Mongoloid (Asian ethnicity). Officer Patrick Smith, fight this bias against you. LAPD Chief Charlie Beck is the one who needs to lose his badge.

    1. Christina39 says:

      You know Alice you’re dumb.

      Rubin told KNX 1070 that Smith — who is white — was pulling over primarily Latino drivers based solely on their race.


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