LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Police Chief Charlie Beck and members of the Police Commission reacted Tuesday to an internal review of the LAPD’s disciplinary system, which some officers described as “unfair” and in need of a fix.
The internal report about concerns among the rank-and-file came nearly two years after fired LAPD officer Christopher Dorner ranted about bias in the department in his manifesto.
“The perception of the men and women of this police department about their discipline system is reality,” Beck said.
More than 500 department employees, some uniformed, were asked their opinion of the department’s disciplinary procedures, a majority of whom thought race, gender and rank played a major role in how and if an officer was punished.
But that perception does not hold true, at least when viewed in light of the facts from a report ordered by Beck after the Dorner incident.
In fact, that report found that rank, race and gender did not play a role in the disciplinary action by the department.
“This report, really? It didn’t focus on the issues,” said LAPD detective David Nunez, who also represents numerous officers facing disciplinary hearings.
Nunez said: “I’ve been a supervisor for what? 22, 23 years. Please, sir, where did you get your facts about these perceptions. Think about it.”
The review listed a number of recommendations that could improve the system, among them: publish a penalty guide, reissue an updated Board of Rights manual, and develop and publish an antinepotism policy.
“Discipline systems are never going to be the most popular aspect of an organization. They are just not,” said Beck, who also added that changes in the system will be coming.
Beck also said he will seek more input from his officers on the subject.
“This is a good start, but it is certainly not the end,” he added.