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Mark Kroeker's Bid to Lead L.A. Police

July 03, 2002

In its search for a strong and effective chief of police, Los Angeles can't do better than Portland, Ore., Police Chief Mark Kroeker ("Kroeker 'Wants to Lead' LAPD," June 30). His failure to win the position last time it was open was clearly a decision based on politics rather than qualifications.

In my experience with Kroeker when I served as a staff attorney for the Anti-Defamation League, he is a man well-respected by his peers and subordinates as well as community leaders and individuals. He is a strong and courageous leader, a creative and forward-looking manager and a man of impeccable integrity. Kroeker demonstrates that strength and sensitivity can indeed exist in the same person. I urge the decision makers to name Kroeker "top cop." We will all have reason to say thanks.

Barbara H. Bergen

Los Angeles

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I find it suspicious and an alarming omission that you would report at length Kroeker's interest in becoming Los Angeles police chief without mentioning his highly publicized refusal to assist the anti-terrorism campaign. Your Nov. 30 article, "Now Portland Comes In for Questioning," subtitled, "Probe: Oregon city and its police chief catch flak for refusing to interview foreigners on a U.S. list," reported the following:

"Law enforcement officers in the rest of the nation are questioning foreigners about their possible knowledge of terrorist activities. But Kroeker, worried about civil rights violations, has said his officers will not join in this task. His is the only police agency in the country to refuse to cooperate for such reasons, according to a spokesman for the U.S. Justice Department."

William J. Becker Jr.

Los Angeles

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