Civilian Police Monitor: Merrick Bobb on the Record #492-493
June 3, 2007One Comment
Los Angeles, CA: What qualifications does it take to become the civilian police monitor for the largest county in the nation? In a newly released two-part interview, on the Full Disclosure Network® (FDN), UC Berkeley educated attorney Merrick Bobb, reveals his background on how he got the job as the civilian monitor of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. He describes how he develops recommendations on strategic police tactics and jail operations while under contract to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors and responds to a critical report prepared by the Sheriffs Deputy’s union.
Viewers are invited to watch a FREE four-minute preview of this two-part interview with Bobb, conducted by host Leslie Dutton and now available online, 24/7, on demand, as a public service. Also featured in the interview and preview is Roy Burns, former President of ALADS, the Association of L.A. Deputy Sheriffs.
Highlights of the full interview are:
Part I: Background & Foot Pursuits
Merrick Bobb describes in detail how he became interested in law enforcement policy and tactics following the Rodney King incident when he served as a Deputy Legal Counsel on the Christopher Commission to reform the LAPD.
Bobb describes how he developed the LASD policy to ban solo foot pursuits by Deputies chasing fleeing suspects and expresses the concerns that motivated him alone to initiate this policy recommendation.
He fields criticism leveled at him by the ALADS (Sheriffs Deputy’s Union). He details his recommendations on when, how and why Sheriffs Deputies should call for back up. This segment features Roy Burns, former LASD Detective who was instrumental in organizing a scathing rebuttal to Merrick Bobb’s Report to the Board of Supervisors on the solo foot pursuit ban.
Part II: Methodology & Jail Operations
As the civilian monitor Bobb describes his goals and methods used to develop recommendations while not having a law enforcement background or training. He points out his experience on the COLTS Commission as having been important. And he describes the values and traits found in most law enforcement officers as being important considerations for the motivation behind their actions.
Segment #2 In this segment Bobb explains the purpose of JAIL and the difference between county jails and state prisons and the role of jailers. He comments on the strikingly different jail operations in Maricopa County, Arizona and condemns conditions that would make inmates uncomfortable, citing rehabilitation as a goal and the Constitution prohibiting cruel and unusual punishment.
Segment #3 Finally, Bobb points out that there is one major reason why there are problems in jail operations. He carefully states that he does not fault the County Board of Supervisors for the problem. He addresses the early release of inmates versus the need to build more jails. And, defers to a “smarter and safer” approach to law enforcement over a “softer and gentler” one.
Full Disclosure® program is billed as “the news behind the news”. Host Leslie Dutton has been conducting interviews with law enforcement officials regarding police politics and public policy since 1992, interviewing all the Chief’s of Police from Ed Davis to William Bratton and most of the Police Commission Presidents and Los Angeles County Sheriffs Block and Baca. In 2002 Dutton was presented with a local public affairs Emmy Award by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for the series “L.A.’s War Against Terrorism”.