The Police Chief and His Case of Convenient Integrity

We’re not against the police. We’re not against the police department, but we are against police who commit misconduct (and those who help cover it up).


They say when you see something, say something.

Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck wants you to believe that after viewing the video he doesn’t want you to see of his officers beating, punching, and stomping 22-year-old Clinton Alford in South Los Angeles, that he was deeply concerned. In fact, he was so concerned that nine days after the incident happened and after the LAPD had time to swoop in and seize the raw footage of the beating, that he personally called Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey to express his desire for her office to investigate the incident and to file criminal charges.

This is what I like to call convenient integrity.

In order to deflect criticism of the department, but really his leadership, Chief Beck is now attempting to align himself, using the media, with an America that’s outraged and disgusted with all of the numerous cases of police brutality happening from coast to coast.

It wasn’t that long ago that Chief Beck had the audacity to speak on the South Carolina police officer who fatally shot and killed Walter Scott and the video footage that captured the awful incident.

Beck said the video footage showed a “criminal act,” and said he also would have arrested the officer.

He then went on to say that “based on what I have seen, based on the video … it is a criminal act.  It is well beyond any policies of the Los Angeles Police Department, and I would have done exactly what the chief in Charleston did. I would have arrested the officer.”

But remember.  This is the same police chief that can’t ever open his mouth in a timely manner to speak intelligently on the numerous officer-involved-shootings and blatant cases of police brutality that take place on his watch and in his own backyard. But when it’s convenient, as in, this incident happened in another police department in another state, he decided to slither on into the news cycle with his two cents.  Some of us saw it for exactly what it was.

Anybody with a pulse and who pays any attention at all to the shenanigans of those on the 10th floor of LAPDHQs knows that come rain or come shine, Chief Beck’s standard and consistent statements about anything controversial involving any of his officers has always been something to the tune of not being able to comment on it until the investigation is concluded.  Always!

When a camera inside of a LAPD patrol vehicle showed 19-year department veteran Southeast Division Officer Mary O’Callaghan kicking 35-year-old Alesia Thomas in the stomach and groin before she eventually died, Chief Beck wanted us to wait to until the conclusion of the investigation before rushing to judgment.

When two LAPD officers from the Foothill Division were caught on tape slamming a handcuffed 34-year-old Michelle Jordan down to the ground not once but twice, Chief Charlie Beck was concerned but wanted to fully investigate the situation.

When 25-year-old Ezell Ford was shot and killed by Newton Division officers, while begging for witnesses to come forward, Chief Beck repeatedly cautioned angry and fed up Angelenos to wait until the conclusion of the investigation.

But apparently, if I am to believe Beck’s most recent comments (which I don’t), it’s a new day up on the 10th floor and depending on your position that can be a good thing or a bad thing.

If you’re one of the rank-and-file men and women who serve in the LAPD, you might want to have a conversation with your League representatives sooner than later.  Because it’s clear to me anyway, that in order to save his own ass and whether you’re innocent or guilty, Beck will throw you under the bus in his attempt to jump on the bandwagon with other police chiefs who have actually taken swift action in the face of something so undeniably egregious.  Investigation concluded or not.

It looks and sounds a lot like this: “I contacted personally the district attorney and expressed my desire for her folks to not only look at this case but to file criminal charges.  We have to keep in mind that the ultimate goal is justice here.  And we want the justice system to be able to address this use of force, which I believe is a criminal act.”

If you’re a civilian under the watchful eye of the LAPD you need to be concerned about Beck’s about-face because if he was sincere, it wouldn’t only be a concern to him when the video is public or about to be public but when he first sees the video.  Remember, this man waited nine days to come clean about the Alford beating and he only did so once it was clear the news had been leaked outside of the department.  He had that video in his possession according to court documents on Oct. 17.  The beating was Oct. 16.  The “concern” was announced on Oct. 24.

I feel the same way good cops do about bad cops.  Good cops know that bad cops make all of them look bad.  They want to see them gone just as much as the folks protesting them do.  But I despise even more anybody who would use the tragic deaths of people at the hands of the police to pass themselves off to the public as being concerned in an attempt to ward off attention and criticism of their own failed leadership.  That’s what I call pathetic and being opportunistic and makes Chief Beck no better than the ambulance chasing attorneys and news van chasing activists he himself seems to despise so much.

The Court of Public Opinion

  • robert peel

    promotions had to be made first before this officer was arrested, god forbid command staff take any responsibility for their officers action.then checks have to be made to see if the officer is being groomed for higher ranks or does he have stuff on people.if not then they can have him arrested.

  • NinaG

    You are right ON, Jasmyne!
    I am so disgusted by the things I see DAILY while at work in the LAPD. If the general public had any idea…

  • callingoutjasmyne2

    Convenient integrity… is that anything like this blog using Department employees to obtain confidential employee files (a crime) to libel cops and their families??? if you are truly interested in integrity, why don’t you use your “sources” to get christopher dorner’s employment file to reveal the truth about him??? his hiring and retention, which ultimately led to the murdes of four innocent people, should never have been. don’t pick and choose the truth….

  • You again?

  • callingoutjasmyne2

    in honor of the innocent families who lost their loved ones at the hands of a murderer, i will keep being vocal on this topic until the truth is revealed. THAT is integrity.

  • Sounds like you need a blog of your own.

  • guest

    also, what happened with the officers that fired over 100 times at two
    old ladies delivering papers? Seems like what they did just went away. What happened to them, were they disciplined at all?

  • Tyndon Clusters

    So calingyouout seems to believe that two wrongs make a right.

    Since Dorner was a deranged madman and Jasmyne didn’t care, so too can calligyouout gainsay and excuse corrupt and bad LAPD officers.

  • SurfPuppy619

    Still don’t know why Beck was re-APPOINTED as LAPS Chief, after the Hillman cover-up. That one incident says it all. a culture of corruption, cronyism and nepotism.

  • SurfPuppy619

    They were promoted, it is called the “Peter Principle”. Happens often in pubic employment.

  • SurfPuppy619

    You again?
    Hahahahaha….I was thinking the exact same thing…you beat me to the punch 🙂

  • discarted

    Officers like you need to publicly speak out. Because if you do, vocal critics like myself will embrace and support you. Stop being complicit by not ridding LAPD of criminal cops. Want to win hearts and minds? Then blow the whistle and cross the thin blue line.

  • discarted

    It’s not a crime for journalists to publish information that cops provide to them. On the other hand, the officer who took the info and leaked it to a journalist is the one who is committing the crime. In any case though, the Police Bill of Rights needs to be shredded. The public has right to know how dangerous some LAPD cops are.

  • Pingback: Internal LAPD Email Shows Concern About Clinton Alford Video Being Leaked to the Media | Jasmyne A. Cannick()

  • callingoutjasmyne2

    no but it is a crime to publish personal information on domestic violence cases, including the names of minor children…. furthermore, any department employee who leaks information (a crime) should be prosecuted in the same manner as any other officer who commits a crime. you don’t get to pick and choose convenient integrity…. at no time did i ever indicate that bad cops should stay employed.. they need to go.

  • NinaG

    Not an officer…therefore I am invisible and worthless (until something needs doing)…

  • Pingback: L.A. Police Chief's 'Convenient Integrity' Put to the Test with Venice Shooting | Jasmyne A. Cannick()

  • cutty sark

    Why do you continue calling for someone else to leak Chris Dorner’s LAPD employment file? Your comments infer that you have seen the contents of the file, so you should follow your own advice and leak it.
    Even better yet, you could do a great service by leaking information on a different aspect of Dorner.
    The Dorner saga had a crucial element of which there was only the most minimal reporting at the time, and nothing since then.
    People deserve a chance to learn about the “Dorner accomplice”.