Patterico's Pontifications

3/22/2008

BREAKING: SWAT Draft Report Is Online

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 2:03 pm



You can read it at this link. [.pdf] The blogger posting it explains here that:

The markings on the pages are not mine, and this is not the final draft. There are errors, such as the discussion of not enough African American officers on SWAT (turns out there is a percentage equal to general LAPD staffing, so one wonders about why this was included).

Go read it now. I haven’t read it yet, but wanted to get it out there now.

UPDATE: I’ve read through much of it, but not all. You might be surprised to find that, while I find the affirmative action stuff to be absurd, I actually agree with part of it quite strongly. I’ll probably put up a post Monday, to coincide with Jack Dunphy’s NRO piece.

21 Responses to “BREAKING: SWAT Draft Report Is Online”

  1. Page 9 – SWAT has been a pioneer in dignity protection.

    Perhaps that is “dignitary protection”.

    On the other hand, there are a few Los Angeles celebrities and politicians that would benefit from “dignity protection”.

    TomHynes (6c3e12)

  2. Granted, I’m only on page 34, but I am not understanding how the cited situations would have been relieved or had a better outcome if the SWAT officers had been black or female….I’ll just keep reading…

    Dana (fba430)

  3. From p. 12:

    The absence of women at any level within SWAT is cause for concern. There is no task in SWAT that a woman could not perform.

    I hate to be so painfully non-PC here, but this seems to me to be nonsense. If a valid, unbiased, non-rigged test were made of the comparative abilities of typical male officers versus typical female officers to handle the most advanced and physically demanding weapons, particularly while in motion and/or having to work one-handed, I have to believe that the men would come out on top.

    I am not eager to risk my life and the lives of others to this kind of blanket affirmative action based on platitudes rather than facts.

    On the other hand, my overall expectations for the LAPD are already so low that perhaps this kind of change would not make any perceptible difference.

    VG

    Voiceguy in L.A. (f3da7a)

  4. I’m only on page 3 and I’m already concerned. On page 3 of the report, it states that Chief Bratton tasked the Board to review SWAT because of Suzie Pena’s death. Bratton specifically admonished the Board to “Take the Pena case into context in your deliberations.”

    I’m not even sure what that means, nevertheless on page 2 it says that the Board “was ultimately precluded from gaining a full and complete understanding of the Pena case until after this Report was finalized …”.

    So much for the “searching inquiry” the Board promised on page 1.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  5. Page 4 mentions that, for the first time in LAPD history, a Board is composed mostly of outsiders to LAPD. The Board mentions they felt a “greater responsibility for this Report” because of Bratton’s openness and confidence in appointing outsiders, a fact that “represents a sea change in from the LAPD’s historically closed and distrustful mentality.”

    It sounds like the Board came into this with a bias against the LAPD. In addition, it’s a shame their gratitude seems directed to the Chief rather than the citizens of LA.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  6. I hope to publish a companion “Readers’ Guide to the SWAT BOI” in the next 24-48 hours, based on the interviews I had with SWAT officers who were at these incidents.

    This should provide a distinctly different perspective because, in most cases, the BOI DID NOT interview any officers who were actually involved.

    Robert C. J. Parry (50a453)

  7. I’ve only read through the introduction but I’m quitting. It’s too depressing and I don’t even live in LA. Fortunately Robert C.J. Parry is on the job.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  8. Voiceguy, The Dallas SWAT unit has at least one female member.

    She’s not some butch bull, either.

    If a woman demonstrates the ability to shoot and move tactically as well as is required, sin her up. If not, then don’t.

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  9. I just can’t help thinking about the tragic events in March, 2005, when a dangerous defendant named Brian Nichols overpowered the female deputy assigned to escort him to the Atlanta courtroom where he was being tried for rape. He stole her gun, shot her in the face, then proceeded to kill the judge and two other people, before escaping in a stolen car.

    This tragedy was, in large part, the product of the politically correct view that any deputy could perform any duty — even though it was ludicrous to assign this small woman to escort this dangerous and much larger man under these circumstances. Georgia law required that his handcuffs be removed as he entered the courtroom, so as not to prejudice the jury against him by the appearance of the restraints. Thus, the situation was made to order for a powerful prisoner to overpower a weaker escort.

    That is why I cringe when I read, “There is no task in SWAT that a woman could not perform.” This is exactly how the Atlanta court marshal’s office apparently viewed things. Three people lie dead because of it.

    This is a context where facts, not platitudes and political correctness, ought to govern. But the people who impose political correctness on this kind of situation have nothing at stake — their lives are not at risk, and there is no accountability for reducing the effectiveness of the organization.

    VG

    Voiceguy in L.A. (f3da7a)

  10. Thus, the situation was made to order for a powerful prisoner to overpower a weaker escort.

    So you’re saying the guy wouldn’t have overpowered you?

    That only a woman would have been overpowered?

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  11. My views are well captured in this article by Jack Dunphy.

    Nichols, age 33 at the time, is 6 feet tall and a couple hundred pounds. Cynthia Hall, the deputy who was shot in the face and beaten, is 5’2″ and age 51 at the time.

    The procedure was ludicrously bad — allowing a dangerous defendant to be uncuffed and changing clothes under the supervision of this single deputy. It’s possible that even a comparably sized man would have gotten into trouble as well, but this small woman was hopelessly outmatched.

    By the way, Nichols himself has yet to be tried for these murders, even though they took place in front of witnesses and it ought to be an open-and-shut case. His defense team has rung up something like $1.8 million in fees, and state legislators are understandably perplexed as to what all the money is going for. Last I knew the trial might start this July, assuming more funding for the defense can be found.

    Anyway, I didn’t mean to sidetrack the discussion completely, but I am fearful of the opportunity for mischief in the affirmative-action platitudes expressed in the SWAT report.

    VG

    Voiceguy in L.A. (f3da7a)

  12. I’ll note that you didn’t, however, answer the question…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  13. c’mon you dont really think a 51yo 5’0 woman has any business guarding a criminal? and you dont really believe she got the job cause she was the best qualified?

    its not about who wouldve been overpowered its about standards being lowered to meet quotas. read the last few paragraphs in this story.

    chas (68d8c2)

  14. I’m actually confused that the eliminated tests would eliminate ALL woman applicants. I am quite confident that there are plenty of women in LAPD who could easily pass the tests. So what’s the deal?

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  15. here’a a paper showing that female officers are more likely to shoot a perp than male officers are. why? well likely because when a perp resists the woman would get her ass kicked if she tried to fight. the study found the more white females the more shootings. the more males the less shootings. black males lowered the rate more than whites for some reason. and from the study

    Increasing the number of female officers by 1 percentage point appears to increase the number of assaults on police by 15 percent to 19 percent.”

    draw your own conclusions

    chas (68d8c2)

  16. “I’m actually confused that the eliminated tests would eliminate ALL woman applicants.”

    How much recruting does SWAT do? The report doesn’t make this clear, I don’t think; but it does recommend limiting SWAT tours to 10 years, which argues to me that there isn’t a lot. If you’re recruiting 2 or 3 people a year from one division of LAPD, you may not have a wildly diverse pool from which to draw.

    Jimmy (ab8251)

  17. I also got the impression that there was very little turnover, with only a handful of new members per year. If the team then chooses “best qualified” from the applicants, then that would tend to be men. For instance, lets say 20 people try out, and 10 meet the minimum standard, to include 2 women. If only 3 will be taken, what are the chances the two women would be in the top 30%?

    Having read the whole thing, my only real heartburn with the BOI was with the “get women and minorities aboard” part. Most of the rest of the report was far better than I would have expected, and frankly, most of what they propose makes a lot of sense, particularly in regards to command and control.

    XBradTC (7c885d)

  18. It’s troubling to see evidence that integrity at the upper ranks of my Police Department is demonstrably none existent! Below I have posted the 6 Core Values of the Los Angeles Police Department! Just about every one of these values applies to this topic and Chief Bratton and Asst. Chief Papa should pay particular attention to their lack of adherence to # 4!
    The reason Bratton is so incensed about this issue being leaked is because he is NEVER taken to task on any issue, no matter how ignorant he is on the subject! We all saw how arrogant he was when the reporter had the audacity to ask if a shooting was racially motivated. One of the major problems with the upper ranks of the LAPD, is it’s like the Michael Jackson effect (Gee Mike do you think it’s a good idea to be bed with a 6 year old boy?, What, your fired!). Meaning Bratton has all of the upper ranks to scared to disagree with him, so they all say YES SIR, to every hair brained thing he does! I think Profiles in Courage (The Commemorative Edition) should be required reading by all upper ranks of the LAPD! Also required reading should be “It doesn’t Take Hero” By Gen. H. Norman Schwartzkopf! These two recommendations would assist the “Leaders” of the LAPD in making the unpopular, yet correct decisions, while showing them what a true leader is like, in Gen. Schwartzkopf! They also should read the core values and reevaluate why they became “Police Officers” in the first place! At one time all of them sat across the table and waxed about helping people and, here’s a novel concept “doing the right thing no matter who’s watching or who you’re working for!
    Bring back Civil Service Protection for the Chief of Police or the status quo of political appointments will continue to tear this city apart! Have the Chief voted in?! Something, anything is better than the corruption we have now! There are plenty of good reasons not having political figures appointing Law Enforcement Officers! Are Eliot Spitzer, Marion Barry or our MIA Mayor the kinds of people you want appointing Police Chiefs? Stepping off the box. Happy Easter to all!

    Core Values of the LAPD

    The Core Values of the Los Angeles Police Department are intended to guide and inspire us in all we say and do. Making sure that our values become part of our day-to-day work life is our mandate, and they help to ensure that our personal and professional behavior can be a model for all to follow.

    ▪ Service to Our Communities
    ▪ Reverence for the Law
    ▪ Commitment to Leadership
    ▪ Integrity in All We Say and Do
    ▪ Respect for People
    ▪ Quality Through Continuous Improvement

    Service to Our Communities
    We are dedicated to enhancing public safety and reducing the fear and the incidence of crime. People in our communities are our most important customers. Our motto “To Protect and to Serve” is not just a slogan – it is our way of life. We will work in partnership with the people in our communities and do our best, within the law, to solve community problems that effect public safety. We value the great diversity of people in both our residential and business communities and serve all with equal dedication.

    Reverence for the Law
    We have been given the honor and privilege of enforcing the law. We must always exercise integrity in the use of the power and authority that have been given to us by the people. Our personal and professional behavior should be a model for all to follow. We will obey and support the letter and spirit of the law.

    Commitment to Leadership
    We believe the Los Angeles Police Department should be a leader in law enforcement. We also believe that each individual needs to be a leader in his or her area of responsibility. Making sure that our values become part of our day-to-day work life is our mandate. We must each work to ensure that our co-workers, our professional colleagues, and our communities have the highest respect for the Los Angeles Police Department.

    Integrity in All We Say and Do
    Integrity is our standard. We are proud of our profession and will conduct ourselves in a manner that merits the respect of all people. We will demonstrate honest, ethical behavior in all our interactions. Our actions will match our words. We must have the courage to stand up for our beliefs and do what is right. Throughout the ranks, the Los Angeles Police Department has a long history of integrity and freedom from corruption. Upholding this proud tradition is a challenge we must all continue to meet.

    Respect for People
    Working with the Los Angeles Police Department should be challenging and rewarding. Our people are our most important resource. We can best serve the many and varied needs of our communities by empowering our employees to fulfill their responsibilities with knowledge, authority, and appropriate discretion. We encourage our people to submit ideas, we listen to their suggestions, and we help them develop to their maximum potential. We believe in treating all people with respect and dignity. We show concern and empathy for the victims of crime and treat violators of the law with fairness and dignity. By demonstrating respect for others, we will earn respect for the Los Angeles Police Department.

    Quality Through Continuous Improvement
    We will strive to achieve the highest level of quality in all aspects of our work. We can never be satisfied with the “status quo.” We must aim for continuous improvement in serving the people in our communities. We value innovation and support creativity. We realize that constant change is a way of life in a dynamic city like Los Angeles, and we dedicate ourselves to proactively seeking new and better ways to serve.

    Ed O'Shea (104094)

  19. Jack Dunphy’s article on NRO is up.

    jeff (967862)

  20. So you’re saying the guy wouldn’t have overpowered you?

    Non sequitur. If the perp is 6 feet tall and in good shape, then the guard should at least look like a bulked up Sylvester Stallone, or better yet Arnie. VoiceGuy never claimed that the guard should have been him, or looked like him. (For all we know, VG is 60 years old and looks like Wally Cox.)

    LarryD (feb78b)

  21. For all we know, VG is 60 years old and looks like Wally Cox.

    Nah, I’m only 56, and I look more like Captain Jack Sparrow (without the mustache).

    VG

    Voiceguy in L.A. (f3da7a)


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