Attorneys for the city of Torrance and fired Police Officer John Maley are negotiating a possible settlement this week. The continuation of a lengthy Civil Service Commission hearing into Maley's case has been postponed until Sept. 9.
Maley was fired in March after superiors discovered that he had pulled a knife on Police Officer Edward LaLonde during an on-duty dispute over police tactics in December.
Maley, who is seeking reinstatement, said he was suffering from untreated stress stemming from a fatal shooting in which he had been involved three months earlier when the dispute with LaLonde took place. Maley said that during the dispute, LaLonde, a departmental instructor in the use of the night stick, told Maley that he should have been able to use a nightstick to disarm the knife-wielding theft suspect who was shot. Maley's attorney also has accused the department of singling out the former officer for strict punishment.
The department has said that Maley was an officer with a history of abusive behavior who crossed all acceptable bounds when he drew the knife on LaLonde and that punishment is meted out fairly by the department.