If my schedule will cooperate, I’m going to try to sort through the various views of Special Order 40 and where LA ought to go with it from here. This includes the points of view of LAPD Chief Bill Bratton, City Councilman Dennis Zine and his proposal to amend SO40, the proposal contained in Jamiel’s Law (which is just a little different than what Zine is suggesting), the view taken by the Police Protective League, which in general supports Zine’s proposal.
In the meantime, take a look at this opinion piece in Sunday’s LA Times in which researcher Monica Varsanyi tells what 450 police chiefs across the country said when asked how they feel about cops doing immigration enforcement.
And be sure to read the compilation in this morning’s LA Times Opinion in which 40 “prominent Angelenos”—chosen from one end of the political spectrum to the other—sound off on Special Order 40.
UPDATE: I missed linking to Rick Orlov’s column on the issue, which is at least fun to read, while advancing the dialog
Here’s pieces of his Bratton quote:
(ABOUT ZINE & HIS MOTION)
“He has not had a conversation with anyone, including my leadership team. He talks so much about being a reserve officer, he should go to his commanding officer for clarification.”
(ABOUT SO 40 IN GENERAL)
“I don’t understand what’s so difficult. We don’t ask people their immigration status if they are not breaking the law. Once they are arrested, we check to make sure they are in the country legally.”
“Our priority is going after gangbangers,” Bratton said. “Once they are arrested, we check their immigration status and if they are in the country illegally, turn it over to ICE.”
I love when Bratton gets on his high horse. (I’m not being ironic here. I actually do.)
And here’s Councilman Dennis Zine:
“This chief doesn’t think anything needs to be changed,” Zine said. “Ask any 10 officers on the street and they will tell you they don’t know what to do with Special Order 40. They feel they can’t do anything.”
Which suggests that Bill Bratton’s right; it’s not a legal issue, it’s a training issue. The problem isn’t with Special Order 40, it’s with the rank and file’s knowledge of it—-meaning the training and oversight on the matter is faulty.
But….although I’ve taken a POV on the issue before, I’m willing to concede that its a complex matter with various valid perspectives to consider. So I’ll continue to gather puzzle pieces for further discussion.
PS: I’ve put in a call to the LAPPL for clarification of their stand. Back with more on that tomorrow or the next day.