Several San Francisco police officers won promotions to key administrative posts despite misconduct records, says the San Francisco Chronicle. Continuing its series on police problems, the Chronicle quotes police experts as saying that turning a blind eye to troubling aspects of an officer’s record in promotions is a serious mistake that essentially gives departmental blessing for past transgressions. Merrick Bobb of the Police Assessment Resource Center in Los Angeles said when a department hands out coveted assignments or makes promotions, it “sends a clear message about the values it considers important and what prior misconduct it is willing to overlook.” Bobb said a department “sends the wrong message when it promotes the hardest-charging, roughest, toughest, hook ’em and book ’em cops without regard to whether their use of force is judicious, reasonable and proportional to the threat faced.”
An agreement with the Police Officers Association places a five-year limit on how far back the chief can go when reviewing disciplinary records of officers being considered for promotion. If the discipline consisted only of a reprimand, it cannot be considered after two years.