After a more-than-yearlong court battle, a Los Angeles Police Department rule takes effect this week that forces new officers in the gang and narcotics units to turn over detailed personal financial information, reports the Torrance (CA) Daily Breeze. The police union, which unsuccessfully sued to block the new rule, has predicted it would lead to mass resignations and transfers out of those units. The rule will not affect current members of those units until 2011, meaning its true effect may not be known for years.
“Potentially, I think the department is going to be faced with a situation where they’re not going to be able to staff their gangs and narcotics units,” said Paul Weber, president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League. The rule is the last requirement of a federal consent decree imposed on the police department after the Rampart corruption scandal in the late 1990s, when officers were found to have beaten and framed suspects. The decree placed the department under federal scrutiny and control. The union, which represents officers ranked lieutenant and lower, says the financial disclosure requirements put officers lives and important information at risk.