By Susan Abram, Los Angeles Daily News
Posted: 11/01/16 – 1:37 PM PDT |
A long-awaited civilian oversight commission to push reforms within the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department was approved by the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, two years after it was formally proposed.
The nine-member panel, which includes one retired officer from the Sheriff’s Department, will operate in an advisory role as it works to hold the largest sheriff’s department in the nation accountable in the jails and within the community. Members include community and faith leaders, a retired sheriff’s lieutenant, former prosecutors and public defenders as well as professors and executives from legal nonprofit organizations, all appointed by county supervisors.
In an early morning news conference, Sheriff Jim McDonnell called the civilian oversight commission a conduit between his department and the community and said the panel will help him lead the department into one of transparency and accountability.
“We will be stronger and effective and be viewed with greater trust when we welcome outside eyes,” McDonnell said. “They will help the public understand our challenges, our capabilities and our needs as well.”
The board’s vote came on the same day supervisors heard a report by the Office of Inspector General on the Sheriff’s Department, which found there were 21 incidents in which deputies fired a weapon at suspects in the first nine months of this year. In some cases, more than one person was shot during an incident. Of the 19 shootings that ended in injuries, 11 people died.
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