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A Message from Hermosa Beach Chief of Police Paul LeBaron

Post Date:05/29/2020 3:30 PM

As your Chief of Police, and a 27-year veteran of the law enforcement profession, I feel compelled to speak publicly about the current sentiment towards law enforcement expressed throughout our country. I want to acknowledge the pain felt by those who have been mistreated at some point in their lives at the hands of the police. The recent events involving law enforcement and communities of color do not reflect my values, or the values of the men and women of the Hermosa Beach Police Department. I am saddened by the inappropriate actions of law enforcement officers and those who have taken an oath to uphold public safety and people’s constitutional rights. The loss of one’s dignity through the misuse of power is an injustice. The loss of life for the same reason is a tragedy. 

The Hermosa Beach Police Department is not immune to the current conversations taking place in our country. Our employees love this community and respect the oath they took as police officers, security officers and support staff. We stand ready to serve our community and embrace the recent tragedies as an opportunity to learn and improve. I encourage each person reading this to consider how you may make a difference in your circle of influence. I encourage you to engage in conversation with others and avoid divisive actions.

The Hermosa Beach Police Department is committed to the law enforcement code of ethics, which begins with the following directive. “As a law enforcement officer, my fundamental duty is to serve the community; to safeguard lives and property; to protect the innocent against deception, the weak against oppression or intimidation and the peaceful against violence or disorder; and to respect the constitutional rights of all to liberty, equality, and justice.” We also adhere to Sir Robert Peel’s Principles of Policing which includes the idea that “Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police.”

I am proud to be a part of a community that is united while respecting the individual differences in each person. I am proud to be a member of a Police Department that earns the respect of its residents on a daily basis. I am proud of the men and women of the Hermosa Beach Police Department who work around the clock to keep our city safe. I am proud of their values and their acknowledgement that true public service is not conducive of the recent images seen in the media. 

This past week I have personally watched my officers handle dangerous and challenging situations that could have yielded tragic results. The difference was that the men and women of the Hermosa Beach Police Department were led by strong supervisors, they adhered to their professional training and used specialized equipment that resulted in the humane and professional treatment of those who posed a threat to public safety. We are here to serve you and thank you for the ongoing support we have received during these challenging times. I look forward to our ongoing partnership as we solve problems together.

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