Delays in implementing a plan to guard against racial profiling will be criticized by a federal official monitoring Los Angeles Police Department reforms, a city official said Friday.
Los Angeles City Council members were also told that the monitor will find fault with efforts to audit police practices, as well as the manner in which some LAPD officers have presented the ongoing reform efforts to colleagues and residents.
The preview of the third quarterly report on the progress of reform came from Legislative Analyst Ron Deaton at a City Council Public Safety Committee meeting.
Deaton has been meeting with the independent monitor charged with tracking the city's compliance with a federal consent decree--essentially, an agreement between the city and the U.S. Department of Justice on a blueprint for LAPD reforms.
Los Angeles began the long and costly process of complying with the consent decree last year.
The effort is being supervised by a federal court, but it is the job of independent monitor Michael Cherkasky to provide the court with regular updates. His report is due Wednesday.
It was in anticipation of that filing that Deaton presented his update to City Council members.
Deaton cited about a dozen areas in which the monitor has raised concerns in recent months.
Despite the problems, Deaton told council members that the city remains in compliance with the overall spirit of the consent decree, which requires "reasonable" progress toward meeting its mandates.
"I think we are making tremendous strides," said Deaton's analyst on the issue, Barbara Garrett.
Other city officials agreed, but said the monitor's concerns show that improvements still can be made.
Councilman Wants Change in 'Spirit'
"My sense is that we are making good progress, but there needs to be a broader commitment to the consent decree," said Police Commission President Rick Caruso. The commission also recently reviewed some of the monitor's latest findings in anticipation of the report.
"The city, generally speaking, has been complying with most of the requirements, but it's more the spirit, that's what I want to see a change in," City Councilman Jack Weiss said.
The decree is made up of 187 provisions, many of which have already been adopted by the city and the LAPD. Other reforms are not complete, but are considered by all parties to be on schedule. In a few areas, such as the creation of a Critical Incident Investigation Division, the city is ahead of schedule.
The process of storing new data being collected by LAPD officers on the race of the people they stop was criticized by the monitor in recent weeks, Deaton said.
The information is intended to eventually help researchers determine whether officers engage in racial profiling.
But because of problems with the automated system that reads the forms, only 112,488 have been electronically recorded so far, of 378,175 collected, according to Deaton's report.
Garrett said the city and its contractor, U.S. Data Source, were testing revisions Friday, and hoped to soon resolve the problems.
Garrett said the monitor has also raised concerns about the expertise of people staffing new LAPD audit divisions, and a training program for LAPD supervisors on the consent decree, which he found inappropriate.
LAPD Deputy Chief Michael Bostic said the monitor had found that the trainers were not sufficiently "enthusiastic."
The training has since been halted.
In another instance, the monitor was unhappy that LAPD officers joked about the reform efforts at a community meeting in a way that he considered derogatory.