The transformation of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) over the past two decades from a once-feared “occupation” force into a community-conscious law enforcement agency is one of the country's most riveting stories.
Award-winning author Joe Domanick's critically acclaimed new book, Blue: The LAPD and the Battle to Redeem American Policing, raises the question of whether the reforms begun by Chief Bill Bratton, and continued by his successor Charlie Beck, have changed the behavior of rank-and-file cops—and whether LA's experience offers lessons for other police forces in today's troubled law enforcement landscape.
In a podcast, Domanick, The Crime Report's West Coast Bureau Chief, discusses how the 1992 LA riots and pressure from the feds generated the momentum the LAPD needed to reexamine its practices, why it still remains an uphill battle to change the “paramilitary culture” of American policing, and why the skills of an effective police chief include “being a master of seduction” when dealing with the press. His chat with TCR Editor Stephen Handelman can be accessed below. Your comments are welcome.