Photo by Sarah Bennett
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) confirmed Friday that a unit-level investigation has been opened against the Transit Services Bureau deputy accused of, among other things, racial bias towards Long Beach Latinos.
The allegations against “Deputy X” were outlined in a report compiled by the Los Angeles chapter of the National Lawyers Guild. Released earlier this week and supported by a consortium of Long Beach community groups, the report says that over a several year period the deputy would remain in his patrol vehicle near transit stations in his jurisdiction and target Hispanic drivers for minor infractions and then illegally impound their cars. Following complaints from Long Beach citizens, the LASD transferred the deputy earlier this year.
“I can assure you that in regard to this report by the National Lawyers Guild, an investigation was immediately opened following the meetings between concerned citizens and LASD,” said Karl Schow, Captian of the Transit Services Bureau’s South Division. “I met with the investigator this last Monday and I want to emphasize to Long Beach that this situation was not neglected or overlooked.”
Schow’s appointment as Captian in June of this year was part of a large change in command within the southern division of the Transit Services Bureau, which oversees the Long Beach portion of the Blue Line. After having been informed of the situation involving Deputy X, Schow held multiple meetings to address the situation, including meetings with Roosevelt Elementary School Principal Chris Lund as well as a group of mothers who made the initial complaints.
“This isn’t going to be instantaneously solved,” Schow said. “These things take time because we want to be thorough–not to mention the confidentiality portion of such investigations… Unfortunately, some people come to meetings and some don’t–and all we can do is our best to let the public know we are looking into this matter. And I want Long Beach to know: I am taking this very seriously and assure them that not only will it get done, but that I am deeply looking forward to strengthening our relationship.”
Schow said he is unable to specify a time as to when the investigation will be completed but assures that the public will be notified when it is. Because it involves personnel issues, Schow was unable to confirm where the deputy was transferred or whether or not he is still involved in transit services.
Read the full National Lawyers Guild report obtained by the Long Beach Post below.
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