The union representing the members of the Los Angeles Airport Police Department (LAXPD) are calling for an independent investigation of Deputy Director David Maggard who is a party to nine lawsuits alleging age and race discrimination.
LAAPOA President Marshall McClain is asking for the assistance to assist in stopping a documented pattern of harassment and retaliation of LAXPD officers.
“The majority of our department are officers of color. We reflect and are part of the community we serve,” said Marshall McClain, president and CEO of LAAPOA. “At a time when our society is reckoning with issues of equality and racial justice, it is shameful that this pattern of discrimination and disrespect is allowed to continue at our airports.”
Maggard previously served as the chief of police in the city of Irvine before joining LAXPD in 2015.
In 2012 it was brought to his attention by members of the African-American community that they were facing hate crimes that he found “disturbing” and vowed to address.
The following year the Orange County Human Relations Commissions (OCHRC) reported that although hate crimes related to vandalism fell in OC by 20%, hate crimes against people increased under Maggards tenure.
African-Americans represent 2% of the population of Irvine, while representing 28% of the reported hate crimes in 2014.
U.S. Senator Kamala Harris praised the OCHRC for the comprehensive annual hate crime reports, which provides access to critical data, that the commission has published for three decades.
Overall, African-American’s represent 1.7% of the total population of Orange County and not a single African-American is a member of the Board of Directors for the organization recording data related to monitoring hate crimes.
When your leader has no connection to African-American’s, or how to handle issues related to them, how do you expect them to govern subordinates who make up more than 50% of the department?
The union is asking for the city of Los Angeles to participate in the investigation, and McClain said he would like to see an inspector general installed at the airport police department or an oversight board like the Police Commission, which oversees the Los Angeles Police Department.
“If nine lawsuits do not constitute a pattern, what does? It is long past time for someone in power to explain how Director Maggard continues to have the ability to abuse his position and foster a culture of intimidation and contempt,” said McClain.
Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts first held the position of Deputy Director when it was created in August 2006. McClain was reported as saying the relationship between the union and Butts was “tumultuous” and many lawsuits were filed under his command as well.