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Criminal Justice

LAPD Chief Moore Appointed To New 5-Year Term Despite Criticism

LAPD Chief Michel Moore, in uniform.
LAPD Chief Michel Moore.
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The Los Angeles Police Commission voted Tuesday to appoint Chief Michel Moore to a second five-year term. Moore has said he intends to relinquish the job in less than five years so his successor will have time to help with planning for the 2028 Olympics.

The vote by the five-member commission was unanimous. The chief's new term begins June 27.

Commissioner Dale Bonner said the chief has provided "steady leadership ... during some very unprecedented and challenging times.

Commission President William Briggs called Moore “an exceptional leader,” said keeping him in charge “will provide much-needed continuity,” and added that the chief “has the ability … to institute cutting edge reforms.”

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Mayor Bass: I Need To See More Reforms

Mayor Karen Bass released a letter she wrote to Briggs noting her support for Moore’s reappointment, while asserting there is a “need for continued and significant reform of how the City approaches public safety.” She said the need was underscored by the incidents this month in which LAPD officers killed three men, all of whom “showed signs of mental crisis.”

The mayor said Moore has agreed to a number of actions to expand police reform, “including improving the response involving those experiencing a mental health crisis.”

Bass said she expects the chief to take several specific actions, including:

  • “Mental health training for all officers and a plan to increase availability” of teams dispatched by the LAPD’s Mental Evaluation Unit. (The two-person teams are made up of an armed officer and an unarmed mental health clinician.)
  • Work with Taser manufacturers “to limit the number of discharges possible.”
  • Work with the City Council “to reform or remove the All Civilian Option from Board of Rights hearings. As currently constituted, the All Civilian Option has reduced accountability for officer misconduct.”
  • Streamline the recruitment and hiring process, move sworn officers in civilian positions to patrol.

Moore issued a statement Tuesday saying he is “grateful” to be reappointed. He said during the process he “listened intensely” to the commissioners and Bass.

“To my critics, I acknowledge all my efforts have not been without missteps,” Moore said, adding that he is “committed” to the reforms Bass laid out in her letter.

The City Council has the power to veto the commission's decision, but that would require a two-thirds vote of the 15 councilmembers, and Moore appears to have enough support to avoid that eventuality.

A Time Of Unprecedented Scrutiny

Moore joined the LAPD in 1981. Former Mayor Eric Garcetti first appointed him in 2018.

He has presided over the department during a time of unprecedented scrutiny of police. Moore came under sharp criticism for how his department handled the 2020 protests over the murder of George Floyd.

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An independent commission found the LAPD was ill-prepared and in disarray during the protests — that its officers used excessive force against peaceful protesters and unlawfully detained thousands of people. Moore took a knee with protestors at one point — winning praise from some critics but also stirring the ire of officers who said he failed to support them.

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