DALLAS, February 12th, 2013– Christopher Dorner, the former police officer turned alleged murderer of three has shifted the nation’s attention to the historically corrupt Los Angeles Police Department. In his publicly released manifesto, he claims the LAPD destroyed his life, ruined his relationships and military career by siding with a white officer he reported for excessive force. An internal affairs investigation concluded the claim was false and he was released, but Dorner has set out to redeem himself and retaliate against the force and its bureaucratic protectors. He claims the conspirators participating in the police department’s rotten culture, institutionalized discrimination, are fair game for his violent, vengeful rampage.
With charges of racism a central element of both the LAPD’s shady reputation and Dorner’s complaint, two additional African American officers have attempted to reach out to the disgruntled fugitive “waging war” on the force.
Two days ago, 48-year old Joe Jones – a Los Angeles police officer of eight years turned entrepreneur - released an essay on his Facebook account disapproving Dorner’s violence while sympathizing with his claims of injustice.
He wrote, “Just like former Officer Christopher Dorner, I used to smile a lot. I loved everyone. I was voted Friendliest Senior of my Sr. Class in High School. I always believed in the system and never got into any trouble. I loved hard and gave to all I could. After Joining the LAPD in 1989 I quickly found out that the world and society had major flaws. I had flaws as well for ever believing that our system of government was obligated to do the right thing [sic].”
Jones references three incidents of injustice he experienced as an African-American, “I had my Civil Rights violated on several occasions. I was falsely arrested at gunpoint by the Sheriffs as an Officer who ID’d himself and was conspired against by both LAPD and the Sheriffs when my civil case went to trial.
I was falsely accused on more than one occasion and simply placed in a position that the trust was so compromised that I could no longer wear the uniform. Also know there were many more episodes. All of these issues are well documented and I present them not to be a Whistle blower, however to hope that one would not assume that all of what is being said is lies as presented by Dorner.”
Jones told The Weekly that he was emotionally and mentally haunted by his experiences and though he has moved on personally and professionally without resentment, understands why Dorner may have snapped:
“Police work was it for him and that’s what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. And to come up with the reality that he’s supposed to do the right thing and if he does do the right thing he should be vindicated. He felt he did the right thing and you know the repercussions came.”
Though some have claimed Jones is exploiting the Dorner case, this is not the first time he has spoken publicly about his experience with the LAPD. In a promotional interview with Lastheplace.com for his nightlife company Jones remarked, “As a kid growing up you believe that the system, i.e. the police department, the courts, etc., was designed to protect the innocent. Let’s just say from my experience that I found there is good and bad in everything.”
Jones calls on unethical police agencies to correct their culture of corruption, “Always think what if it were you, how would you feel? How would you like if you were falsely accused and your life, lively-hood and career was taken from you? How would you like if someone was beating on you just because they felt they could get away with it? You are no better the criminals you took an oath to arrest when you do what you do!”
He concluded with an appeal for Dorner to stop killing innocents and seek forgiveness.
A second public appeal for Dorner was released by 56-year old active-duty police Sergeant Wayne K. Guillary. The 31-year veteran recounts his personal history enduring racism within the police department and the changes he’s witnessed:
“Markedly, by 1997 I would find out just how deep the racism existed within the darkened corridors of the LAPD. The experience would forever change the way I would express my thoughts about the incidents of racial injustice inside the LAPD. I had witnessed and personally experienced within the organization acts of blatant discrimination. Its affect left its victims losing hope; their faces were streaming with tears of despair and their voices crying out screams of desperation.”
Guillary continues, explaining with fluid, heartfelt articulation that though racism is endemic to the force, change is possible. Chief of Police Charlie Beck has lent his ear when others would not, hoping to improve the institution internally.
“There’s still much work to be done … Some may say that nothing has changed with the leadership in the LAPD. … Trust me I have been in the fight with the organization regarding social and racial injustice within the LAPD. Currently, I am the only out spoken African American within the organization that possesses the moral courage to confront and ask questions unflinchingly about race, racism and discrimination in the LAPD. Yet still, I have paid a humiliating price inside the LAPD for preserving and believing in the importance of “I have a Dream. [sic]”
Guillary concluded his appeal by encouraging Dorner to stop his murderous spree, but to surrender on live television so that the event is filmed and he is “not harmed”.
“Christopher, I ask that you stop your actions my brother. This is not the answer, nor is this the way to resolve conflict. Too many people have been hurt and too many innocent families are hurting. Do the right thing and stop the unwarranted violence and creation of fear.”
After years of documented internal discrimination, perhaps it is time for more officers to come forward and share their experiences. Exposure and transparency are the only medication for the sickness of institutionalized corruption. For the Los Angeles Police Department, disgrace cannot be more complete. It is time for leadership to lead by purging criminal, unethical elements before the next Dorner decides enough is enough.