Officers of the Los Angeles Police Department have truly outdone themselves. They managed to “review” more than 1,300 allegations of biased policing against the department and declare that none of the complaints were valid.
The 1,356 complaints were reportedly submitted to the LAPD from 2012 to 2014 and the president of the Police Commission, Matt Johnson, admitted that several are likely warranted but they just can't prove it.
“We need to take a look at it,” Johnson reportedly said. “I don’t think anybody believes that there are actually no incidents of biased policing, the problem is we don’t have an effective way of really adjudicating the issue.”
The lack of transparency is one of the key reasons citizens tend not to trust the LAPD — the very police department that housed the five white officers who beat Rodney King nearly to death back in 1991.
Biased policing allegations are reportedly difficult to prove because they're based on what an officer is thinking when they stop someone.
"Someone’s thoughts are tough to prove without numbers to show a 'pattern of behavior,'" Phillip Atiba Goff, president and co-founder of the Center for Policing Equity at UCLA reportedly said.
But ... it's the LAPD, certainly a pattern of behavior can be found within a department with a publicized history of racial profiling.
If the LAPD is serious about bettering its relationship with the community, they should probably start by doing a more thorough investigation of the racial profiling complaints. Supposedly, a schedule roll-out of new body cameras will help keep track of bias policing in the future, but let's wait and see how many times officers "forget" to turn them on.
Banner Photo Credit: Flickr user Tim Wang