June 18, 2024 The Best Source of News, Culture, Lifestyle for Culver City, Mar Vista, Del Rey, Palms and West Los Angeles

Board of Supervisors approve Sheriff’s Department civilian oversight commission

Updated Tuesday, Dec.  9 – 2:15 pm

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors today approved the creation of a civilian commission to oversee the Sheriff’s Department.

Supervisors Mark Ridley-Thomas and Hilda Solis joined forces to propose the independent commission, the structure of which has yet to be determined. Supervisor Sheila Kuehl backed the plan, while Supervisors Michael Antonovich and Don Knabe voted no in a 3-2 vote.

“It is all about accountability … and constitutional policing,” Ridley-Thomas said.

Ridley-Thomas and ex-Supervisor Gloria Molina pushed for a civilian review board for more than a year but were unable to garner a third vote on the five-member board. The idea was last rejected in August, before Solis and Kuehl were elected.

“The public trust … has fallen to a new low” across the country,” Solis said. “We can’t afford to delay any longer.”

Advocates said a citizens’ commission was critical, given violence against jail inmates and corruption within the Sheriff’s Department.

The department has “a long history of corruption, evading accountability, violence and (runs) the largest jail system in the world,” said Jas Wade of Dignity & Power Now.

A temporary Citizens’ Commission for Jails Violence was established in2011 and recommended dozens of reforms the following year. However, implementation of several of those changes is still underway and the county is facing a pending federal consent decree stemming from its maltreatment of mentally ill inmates.

“Circumstances have not gotten substantially better,” Ridley-Thomas said.

Supervisor Michael Antonovich argued that the review board would be “a step backwards,” saying that some of the Sheriff’s Department’s “darkest days” took place under multiple layers of oversight.

Antonovich urged his colleagues to rely on the Office of Inspector General to monitor jail conditions and conduct investigations.

Other opponents of a civilian board, including a representative from the Citizens’ Commission for Jail Violence, said such a commission would have no authority over the elected sheriff without changes to state law. Other critics said a civilian panel could dilute the efforts of Inspector General Max Huntsman.

Without subpoena power, a civilian board would be ineffective and “create expectations among the people that cannot be met,” said attorney Richard Drooyan, responsible for monitoring the implementation of reforms suggested by the CCJV.

Drooyan is a former assistant U.S. Attorney who has served on numerous local commissions, most significantly the Los Angeles Police Commission under former Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

Backers of the idea said that even an advisory-only board would offer community members a critical voice and a forum for grievances, but today many demanded that the civilian commission be given subpoena power.

Dozens of advocates said the review board should not include any current or retired members of law enforcement.

Sheriff Jim McDonnell has expressed his support for a commission to oversee the department, but has questioned whether such a board should have subpoena power.

Interim Undersheriff Neal Tyler, speaking on behalf of McDonnell, who was attending a meeting of sheriffs from across the state, reiterated that support today, saying the new sheriff wants to “maximize access.”

Huntsman said he was willing to work under a civilian review board with the authority to fire him and said the commission’s effectiveness would turn on access rather than legal standing.

“The issue of access … is absolutely critical,” Huntsman said.

Success would depend, he said, on “whether or not what they have to say is welcomed by the department.”

Huntsman said he has not been given the access he needs to do his job.

McDonnell, in the sheriff’s post for just a week, is reviewing a 31-page legal opinion from county attorneys on sharing information with the Office of Inspector General, according to Tyler.

That opinion, drafted in August, includes “both reassurances about access and also cautionary statements” about divulging information, Tyler said.

A working group to include McDonnell and Huntsman, or their representatives, and one representative appointed by each supervisor will be assembled and directed to report back in 90 days with recommendations as to the commission’s mission, authority, size and structure. The vote in support of the working group was unanimous.

in Crime, News
Related Posts

West Hollywood Resident Robbed at Gunpoint Near Sheriff’s Station After Pride

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Victim Recounts Harrowing Early Morning Encounter in Rainbow District A West Hollywood resident and his friends were heading home in...

Michelin-Starred Chef James Kent Passes Away, Saga Hospitality Group Announces

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Chef Kent Is Remembered for His Culinary Excellence and Charity Work The Saga Hospitality Group announced the death of Michelin-starred...

Film Review: Longlegs

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

LONGLEGS is pure poetic eldritch terror. From the very beginning, director Osgood Perkins uses the actors’ performances, cinematography, and even...

Two Men Arrested After Injuring Elderly Woman in Road Rage Incident at LAX

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Violent Altercation Hospitalized Elderly Passenger  Los Angeles Police Department detectives from the Pacific-LAX Division have arrested two men involved in...

Judge Rules in Favor of Tenants in Historic West Los Angeles Eviction Case

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Landlord’s Eviction Plan Under Ellis Act Rejected, Tenants Can Stay After a lengthy legal battle that spanned over a year,...

Marina del Rey Sportfishing: A Great Day on the Water

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Fishing is a pastime like no other. You can experience the nostalgia of that pastime in real time at Marina...

University of Miami President to Replace Gene Block Amid Controversy

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Julio Frenk Named New UCLA Chancellor at UC Regents Meeting The search for a new chancellor at UCLA is over....

Culver City Police Collaborate with VA and LASD to Aid Unhoused Veteran

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Joint Efforts Lead to Successful Assistance for a Veteran in Need The Culver City Police Mental Evaluation Team collaborated with...

West Hollywood Kicks Off WeHo Pride Arts Festival This Weekend

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Celebration Features Diverse LGBTQ+ Events From June 14-16 Each year, the City of West Hollywood celebrates the artistic contributions of...

30th Anniversary of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman Murders Commemorated with Virtual Vigil

June 13, 2024

June 13, 2024

Family Honors Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman in Virtual Candlelight Vigil This week marks the 30th anniversary of the...

Culver City PRCS Hosts Summer Splash Kick-Off Event

June 13, 2024

June 13, 2024

Join PRCS for Fun-Filled Recreational Swim Activities The Parks, Recreation, and Community Services (PRCS) department of Culver City is gearing...

Students for Justice in Palestine Establish Third Encampment on the UCLA Campus on June 10

June 12, 2024

June 12, 2024

UCLA Administration Calls in Four Police Groups Within Two Hours, Arrests 27 Pro-Palestinian protesters briefly established a third encampment on...

Los Angeles City Council Postpones Vote on Marilyn Monroe’s Former Home

June 12, 2024

June 12, 2024

Decision on Historic Monument Status Rescheduled for June 26  After Judge James Chalfant issued a preliminary decision on the motion...

AMC Theatres Unveils Eight Money-Saving Deals for Summer Movie Season

June 12, 2024

June 12, 2024

Enjoy Discounted Tickets, Special Promotions, and Fan Favorites at AMC If you are a movie lover who has not been...

Hang-Ten Therapeutics-Surf Therapy for Kids: Catching Waves and Finding your Calm

June 12, 2024

June 12, 2024

A different type of therapy is making waves in Los Angeles. Hang-Ten Therapeutics, founded by Naomi Matanick, a licensed pediatric...