L.A. School Police Chief Resigns After School Board Defunds Police by 35%

Defund the Police L.A. schools (Mario Tama / Getty)
Mario Tama / Getty

Los Angeles School Police Chief Todd Chamberlain resigned Wednesday after the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) voted the night before to cut his department’s budget by $25 million, or 35% of the total.

The budget cuts came as a direct result of pressure by Black Lives Matter activists to “abolish the police” or at least “defund the police.”

Last week, as Breitbart News reported, the LAUSD failed to reach a decision on defunding the school police, who protect the schools from gang violence and mass shootings, among other responsibilities.

But this week, on Tuesday, as the Los Angeles Times reported, it voted for deep cuts to the force:

The Los Angeles Board of Education on Tuesday approved an immediate 35% cut to its school police force, a reduction of $25 million, in response to weeks of protests by student activists and community groups who had called for the elimination of the department.

The board action also calls for officers to give up their uniforms and patrol off campus, and will lead to the layoffs of 65 officers in the 471-employee department. The money saved from the cuts is to be allocated to fund staff to specifically serve the needs of Black students and a task force that will study ways to reimagine the issue of student and campus safety.

Chamberlain warned that the proposed cuts would mean officers would not be able to provide overnight security to schools, would have to stop preventing sex trafficking, and would have to end their efforts at “intervention and prevention,” the Times added

The meeting lasted 13 hours, and the vote was four to three.

In response, CBS Los Angeles reported, Chamberlain resigned on Wednesday.

Chamberlain released a statement: “In good conscience, and in fear for safety and well-being of those I serve, I cannot support modifications to my position, the organization and most importantly, the community (students, staff and families) that I believe will be detrimental and potentially life-threatening.”

In a press briefing Wednesday evening, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti declined to comment on Chamberlain’s resignation, except to note that they had worked well together, and that police would need to move to new methods of law enforcement.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His new book, RED NOVEMBER, is available for pre-order. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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