Charlie Beck City Attorney District Attorney Jim McDonnell LAPD LASD Law Enforcement U.S. Attorney

LA Sheriff McDonnell, LAPD Chief Beck, CHP’s Farrow and More Meet with Religious Leaders for Post-Ferguson Conversation

On Tuesday afternoon, Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell
, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and a cluster of other LA law enforcement figures got together with around two dozen local religious leaders for a two-hour, no-press-allowed post-Ferguson chat in the hope that everyone might speak candidly about the tensions between law enforcement and the communities they serve.

The meeting, which took place on the 8th floor of the newly renovated Hall of Justice, on Temple Street in downtown LA, was the inaugural event for the historic building.

Judging by what WitnessLA was able to gather as everyone was dispersing, most came away with the feeling that some real and relevant things had been said. Moreover, everybody wanted to do it again.

“We don’t want to have this be one-and-done,” said Sheriff McDonnell when we spoke after the event. The idea was to build ongoing relationships, he said.

The gathering was billed as being co-hosted by McDonnell, Beck and CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. District Attorney Jackie Lacy, LA City Attorney Mike Feurer, and Acting U.S. Attorney Stephanie Yonekura were also on hand.

But, it was clearly an LASD-organized affair. Still everyone had reportedly had things to say—a lot of it straight talking from both the faith leaders and the cops. “It was not a booster club,” said McDonnell.

Interestingly, the faith leaders didn’t just raise issues with law enforcement, they also spoke frankly to each other. One issue in particular that reportedly caused discussion, according to those present, was the necessity of the clergy to engage when there is a police/community problem “not Just read about it.”

On this topic, one pastor reportedly said, ‘It breaks my heart that [when something happens] we close the doors of he churches.”

Another subject that caused much discussion was the religious leaders’ acknowledgement that affluent communities tend to view—and experience—the police very differently than do lower income communities

McDonnell and Beck both talked about interaction with the clergy as a being “critical piece of community policing.” They also spoke of the need to bring what occurred on Tuesday, “to the station level,” said McDonnell, for the LASD and the LAPD.

Community oriented policing is not something law enforcement agencies should do on the side or merely to appease critics,” he said. “Rather, a focus on community oriented policing ensures law enforcement is viewed by the community as legitimate.”

“We are very fortunate in this community to have law enforcement leadership that recognizes and understands the importance of strengthening community relations,” said Reverend Chip Murray, in a pre-meeting statement. “This timely event will help us build upon the strong foundations that already exist and enable us to do even more, working together.”

A pastor from Compton, who was leaving just as WLA arrived, pronounced the meeting, “Good. Very good.” Things were said that needed to be said, he told me. “And that’s a very good thing.”


  • Post Ferguson conversation?
    Here you go. Property values in Ferguson have plummeted 47% and will continue to fall. The residents in Ferguson will suffer for generations to come. Every aspect of life in Ferguson will be affected. The schools just lost a huge amount of money due to a plummeting tax base.
    Now the slumlords will come in.
    All because of a lie. A flat out lie. The “Hands Up Don’t Shoot” narrative was a lie.

    Say what? That’s not the conversation you wanted to have? Never mind. Carry on.

  • Exactly, that the DOJ went after the city in a skewed report because Wilson did nothing wrong is easy enough to see and the numbers they came up with are bad? Please, this is Holder and Obama playing racial politics like they have from the start and social do gooders not caring one little bit. It’s part of their agenda as well.

  • Tension between law enforcement and the community? Ferguson matter was fully investigated by a corrupt federal agency looking to fry a cop and they found nothing. The tension is one sided and being fueled by our beloved president, anarchists, and cop haters. This meeting won’t help resolve anything. The effort needs to begin in the neighborhoods and households of the inner city, sorry.

    Raise your kids and they won’t have to “raise their hands.”

  • Ferguson will only get better. Thugs in the community and Klan Cops alike, will both get the message.

  • Klan cops? Sure. LAPD cop wanted for murder, white? No.
    LAPD cop smuggling people across border, white? No.
    LASD cops planting evidence in pot shop, white? No.
    LAPD cops working for Death Row Records, white? No.
    There are corrupt white cops but let’s stop pretending that black, Asian, and Hispanics don’t abuse their power.

  • #5 Realistically Speaking
    Ferguson will only get better?
    The free fall of real estate prices has taken place since the protests. That’s a fact. I know it’s an inconvenient one that makes you uncomfortable, but it’s a fact none the less. Check out Ferguson in five years. It’s going to be another East St. Louis.
    But what do you care? Ferguson gave you another chance to spout off about racism fom the cops, injustice, etc.
    You don’t give a shit if the fallout leaves a community in ruins, you must continue with the narrative to show just how down you are with the struggle. Consequences and collateral damage be damned.

  • Again, the Sheriff is wasting time. How about spending time with us line folks and see what it is we do for a living. Oh yah, I’m still wearing my rolled up long sleeves, both arms sleeved, chewing my favorite tobacco product.

  • You guys should listen to J McD. There is such thing as a post Ferguson conversation, but you want to deflect and talk about home prices.

    Please don’t act like you know something about real estate investments. This is the same culture that takes 10 people to buy a used boat to goto the river and 9 of you bounce the check then f- your buddy. @8, you are so bad at TT2 transfer. When you guys get the elevator fixed come by and get something that belongs to you. I think she is falling in love.

    Show up, shine up, and shut up.

  • Just wondering if the “Boomer” has changed his handle to TT Bad Boy? Comments seem to be along the same lines.

    I think the new Sheriff has a pretty good idea what the line folks do.

    Do yourself a favor, get in line, follow the policies and most of all take care of your oral health. Oh, and don’t expect EBD when the suspension for not getting in line hits. I am sure the life class would just be a waste of time.

  • @ Oh Well. You need to POWER DOWN.
    Your feelings are waaay too deep into Ferguson.

    Too much energy expended for a place that you personally can’t relate to, especially since you never lived or worked there.

    Your experiences may be similar, however I doubt it.

  • Red Buzzer,
    Because I don’t live or work in Ferguson doesn’t change the facts. Yes, I know the facts are very difficult for you to deal with. I realize that the facts make you uncomfortable. I understand your reluctance to address the factual part of my statements and instead make your point that “I can’t relate” and try to get me to stop stating facts.
    That’s the problem with “Having a conversation”. You don’t want anybody to bring up any facts that make you uncomfortable.
    Here are the facts. “Hands Up Don’t Shoot” was bullshit. You know that. Another fact is, real estate prices are plummeting in Ferguson. You know that. Another fact is, businesses in Ferguson can’t afford to rebuild because of astronomically high insurance rates after the riots. You know that. Another fact is, the tax base is suffering, so the schools suffer. You know that.
    Are you asserting that because I’ve never lived or worked in Ferguson none of the above facts are true?
    Or are you just wishing I would shut my mouth, because the facts that I point out make you uncomfortable and cause you to look at the results/consequences/damage that the lie/false narrative caused?

  • Oh Well: Your redundancy repels any true dialogue to have with you. No one is disputing facts. It is,what it is. Maybe it’s not Ferguson……..Maybe it’s just you.

  • @Red Buzzer~Dude, wrong. I think every state, all 57 of them, can “relate” to Ferguson.
    I don’t want my cops more sensitive. I just want them insensitively available to clean up the messes after law abiding citizens stop thugs committing crimes, in their tracks.
    And I want my cops safe. Law enforcement ain’t for sissies.

  • Lol. It’s my redundancy that repels “dialouge”. Right. Got it. I’m sure it has nothing to do with me pointing out inconvenient facts and undeniable truths that go against your PC narrative.
    I’m sure it’s simply my redundancy.

  • Obama talked about how law enforcement needs training on how to conduct police work in black neighborhoods, after law enforcement was cleared of any wrong doing in Ferguson. Why not address the community as a whole, Black, Hispanic, White or any other ethnic group and teach the parents on how to raise good law abiding citizens. No one has criticized the parents of Brown for raising a street thug gangster!!!

  • BTW Red Buzzer,
    Check out comment # 5 by Realistically Speaking.
    Before I became redundant and restated the facts, somebody was disputing the facts I presented.
    Just sayin’.

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