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Criminal Justice

Northeast Police Station Will Be Renamed After LAPD's First Female Deputy Chief

A computer-generated rendering of a building with trees and a car in front of it.
A rendering of the Northeast Community Police Station before it opened in 2015.
(Courtesy LAPD )
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The Los Angeles City Council has voted to rename the Northeast Community Police Station after Margaret "Peggy" York, the department's first female deputy chief.

The station serves about 250,000 people in communities that include Atwater Village, Cypress Park, Eagle Rock, East Hollywood, Echo Park, Glassell Park, Highland Park, Los Feliz, Mt. Washington, and Silver Lake.

Councilmember Monica Rodriguez described York as a "trailblazer."

What we need to do is to continue to make sure that those doors remain open for women in the department of sworn and civilian personnel to continue to ascend the ranks.
— Councilmember Monica Rodriguez
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"Far too often, there isn't enough that we can celebrate in this manner, in this magnificent way — and someone who's really just, again, broken the glass ceilings," Rodriguez said. "And what we need to do is to continue to make sure that those doors remain open for women in the department of sworn and civilian personnel to continue to ascend the ranks."

A white woman with blond hair in a dark formal dress stands next to an Asian man in a tux.
Peggy York with her husband Lance Ito photographed in 2002.
(Frederick M. Brown
/
Getty Images)

York, who died last October, started as a radio telephone operator with the LAPD in 1965 but became a police officer just three years later, when women were not allowed to promote past the rank of sergeant, according to Councilmember Mitch O'Farrell.

As part of one half of an all-female investigative team, York's groundbreaking career helped inspire the 1980's TV show "Cagney & Lacey," about two female police detectives.

Her husband, retired Judge Lance Ito, once told an interviewer that York rarely watched the show, saying it probably wasn't at the top of her to-do list for a "mother and a busy professional."

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Ruby Flores, the president of the Los Angeles Police Women Police Officers and Associates, said in a statement that York rose through the department's ranks despite harsh and unfair criticism from male counterparts.

]"York was an inspiration to countless women, a person who was not afraid to challenge conventional roles for women in law enforcement," Flores said.

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