Judge Threatens Oakland Police Department With Federal Takeover

OAKLAND (KCBS) – Dissatisfied with the compliance rate of the Oakland Police Department to mandated reforms, a judge says the scandal-plagued department will go under federal control if it fails to quickly make good on reforms agreed to nine years ago.

As part of the settlement in the ‘Riders’ police misconduct case of 2003, the department consented to numerous reforms to be monitored by an independent panel. Judge Thelton Henderson wrote in a periodic review this week that the department remains “woefully behind its peers around the state and nation,” and that he can’t believe the department still hasn’t fully complied nearly a decade later.

KCBS’ Holly Quan Reports:

Henderson also increased the oversight authority of a court-appointed monitor in a scathing five-page ruling Tuesday.

Henderson said Oakland Police Chief Howard Jordan must first consult with the monitor before making important department decisions. Those include promoting and disciplining officers and changing policing policy and tactics.

Mayor Jean Quan agreed Wednesday that the city was moving too slowly to improve the department. But, she said, Oakland’s new leaders are committed to making it happen.

Civil rights attorney Jim Chanin helped draw up the original agreement. He is asking the judge to consider moving forward on a federal takeover.

“I view this as a last chance agreement for OPD before those proceedings are begun,” said Chanin. “We do not want to see the Oakland Police Department put into a receivership, but on the other hand, if it has to be, then it will be.”

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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  • Beverly Hills

    I think Oakland long should’ve been taken over by the federal government. Oakland has gotten outta control and no one seems to care except the r-e-a-l residents of Oakland. Officers come into Oakland, work for a paycheck and go back to their “burbs”. They don’t r-e-a-l-l-y care about the city. They treat the people like 3rd class citizens and always use gastopo tactics. Bring in the federal government….get rid of the mayor…and Oakland, we’re on our way !!!!

    • Darwin

      Please attempt to spell words correctly. In the case of Gestapo, it is capitalized because it was the name of an organization. As for OPD, there are some officers who don’t care but most actually do care. Goodness knows that federal takeovers are always for the better. How well has the welfare system worked out? Be careful what you wish for, because you just may get it.

  • Darwin

    To compare San Jose to Oakland is ludicrous. Yes, the homicide rate has increased. But it is still nowhere even close to Oakland’s rate. Just wait until Mayor Reed gets rid of the pension system. All the great officers SJPD has will leave and you’ll be left with the rejects. The police and fire departments are not getting rich off their pay nor their pensions. Yes, they are reasonably well compensated but its not making them millionaires.

  • http://hirendhara.in/wei/city-council-approves-100k-pay-raise-for-opd-federal-monitors/ City Council approves $100K pay raise for OPD federal monitors | My Blog

    […] monitoring group recently was given additional oversight duties by U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson who has regularly uttered his disappointment over […]

  • http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2014/06/17/federal-monitor-opd-making-progress-still-struggling-with-racial-profiling-oakland-police-department/ Federal Monitor: OPD Making Progress, Still Struggling With Racial Profiling « CBS San Francisco

    […] (KCBS)— Oakland Police Department’s federal monitor released a report that says it has to comply with just six of the 51 original reform goals that […]

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