The Los Angeles Police Commission has forwarded to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa the names of three finalists to become the next police chief — a list that contained no women or minorities, but sparked little initial criticism, the Los Angeles Times reports. Assistant Chief Jim McDonnell, Deputy Chief Charlie Beck, and Deputy Chief Michel Moore will compete to be chosen by the mayor to replace William Bratton, who steps down Saturday after seven years.
In the not-so-distant past, when tensions between the LAPD and minority communities in the city ran high, the selection of three white men as finalists would almost certainly have set off intense criticism. However, news of the decision was met generally with praise as officials and outsiders said reforms made under Bratton had largely rendered racial and gender politics a moot point. John Mack, the commission president and a prominent African American civil rights activist, said he was struck by how little attention was devoted to race and ethnicity when the panel held community meetings throughout the city seeking the public’s guidance on a new chief.