GARDENA — A police officer who was forced to take disability retirement after he was involved in a series of shootings, including the fatal shooting of a man suspected of stealing a car, has been returned to duty by the City Council.
After a report by a hearing officer, council members on Tuesday voted to return officer Craig Knapp to duty. Knapp, who had been involved in seven shootings during 12 years on the force, had been placed on disability retirement in August, 1984, by former City Manager Martin Reagan. Knapp immediately appealed.
Hearing officer Bicknell Showers said that Reagan had relied on a Los Angeles Sheriff's Department psychologist who concluded that Knapp had a "personality disorder which predisposes him toward the inappropriate use of force and particularly the inappropriate use of a firearm."
Showers said the psychologist relied too heavily on one type of personality test. Moreover, a psychiatrist who conducted three interviews with Knapp determined that he was fit to work as a police officer, Showers wrote.