City Government Civil Liberties Crime and Punishment Immigration & Justice LAPD Police

The May Day Commission Report – Part 1


LAPD Chief Bill Bratton is going in front of the Police Commission today
to give the first of his reports on what really happened on May Day.

We know that a number of things—like whacking non-combative reporters with batons, for example— are out of policy. Whether Bratton will say so today is unclear.

Meanwhile the Police union has shot off their own preemptive strike against anything too negative, by issuing a list of new training procedures and crowd control protocols needed to prevent future May Days—with special emphasis on the Metro division. The list is, for the most part, quite constructive and non-defensive.

(Although one, frankly, should not need much extra training to know that one shouldn’t engaged in the above-mentioned reporter whacking. In other words, there were other, more complex issues in play on May Day, than mere lack of training.)

I’m busy with another project for the next few hours. But back shortly with more thoughts and updates.


  • Non-combative reporters? Do they exist?

    The report will be a political paper rather than an operational review. Just watch.

  • Reports in the NY Times and LA Times, although thin, seem to suggest that Bratton has argued that the chief problems were with command and control. Sloppy planning (my choice of descriptor) and poor communication played havoc from the beginning and dominoed toward the end. I got the clear sense from both reports that Chief Bratton has taken the responsibility for the fracus squarely on the shoulder of the LAPD – and, further noted that at least one commanding officer who had the authority, and was in proximity, to intervene failed to do so. Neither report read like “training” or whitewash.

  • Brattton’s the real deal but it’ll probably take more than even another five year term to get things right.

Leave a Comment