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Who is Charlie Beck? A look at Villaraigosa's choice for LAPD chief

LAPD candidates

Charlie Beck at a glance

Years in the LAPD: 32

Age: 56

Family: Married with three children.

Education: Cal State Long Beach, bachelor of arts in occupational studies-vocational arts

Background: The son of an LAPD deputy chief, Beck was promoted from captain to deputy chief during Bratton's tenure. He is a popular figure with rank-and-file officers; two of Beck's three children are LAPD officers. Bratton often turned to Beck to handle controversial problems, such as the massive DNA testing backlog and errors in fingerprint analysis.

On the job:  Throughout his career, Beck has spent most of his time in the field. While not denying an ambition to seek out new and bigger assignments over the years, Beck tended to shun many of the administrative positions that officers typically take to earn promotions.  Soon after Bratton took over the department in 2002, however, he selected Beck to be the captain in charge of the Rampart Division, which had badly tarnished the department with revelations of corruption and abuses. Beck was hailed by a panel that examined Rampart for his ability to develop -- and get his officers to adopt -- a more inclusive, progressive approach that emphasized a partnership with the residents.

Photo: Former Police Chief William J. Bratton poses with chief finalists, from left, Deputy Chief Michel Moore, Deputy Chief Charlie Beck and Assistant Chief Jim McDonnell. (Gary Friedman/Los Angeles Times / October 28, 2009)

More photos: LAPD Chief nominee Charlie Beck

Full story: Villaraigosa selects Beck to be next LAPD chief

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Comments () | Archives (18)

An excellent choice, marred only by the Times continuing delusion it knows anything about law enforcement in general, and LAPD in particular.

Congratulation to Chief Charlie Beck. It was a difficult job to choose from three excellent candidates, however, our Mayor AV, I feel elected the best with confidence that the other two, McDonnell and Moore continue their support and experience to serve the LAPD, how lucky is LA. Thank you AV Mayor.

Fantastic choice

Looks like Magnum P.I....

Best choice they could have made! This is an amazing man and there should have never been a question that Charlie Beck should have been chosen Police Chief! Congrats Chief Beck...you deserve it!

I object to this. This man is not a native Spanish speaker and does not represent the community. How can he relate to us? We deserve a person of La Raza in this important position. That is the least we are owed. This is just more of the same. We are the majority in LA now, after a long time, and the police chief, of all people should be Hispanic. What is it going to take?

I guess it pays to be the least educated candidate.

Congratulations Chief Beck!!

The Mayor got it RIGHT!!

I'm sure he will do a great job. Excellent choice.

Who cares...

Congratulations Chief Beck, your road ahead is going to be tough but you have the demonstrated ability to be successful. Continue to be the man that many of your officers know that you are. Just remember that City of Los Angeles comes first.

He looks like a cross between Magnum and Columbo. Based on that, I think he'll do a fine job.

Congratulations to the nominee! If in Charlie Beck is choosen his first duty should be to arrest William Bratton for the vandalism of public property. Mr. Bratton signned his name on the desk tax payers paid for him to use in fulfilling his Police Chief duties not to write on. There are many school children in Los Angeles County who have been arrested for simular acts. Was that a good example to send to children? It was understood that the Presidents of the United States starting with Harry S. Truman did it on the White House desk. Are we as citizens sending a message that the Los Angeles Police Chief hold this same title?

Writing on public property is a crime regardless of the persons intent and position. Or do some people have special privileges?

I fail to understand the Times. For decades the Times has seen fit to abuse the LAPD like an unwanted, red-headed stepchild. Now the department finally gets another real cop at the helm (since 1992) and the Times is giving him kudos!

We'll see how long that lasts.

There's no telling what Chief Beck will do with the department, but after all it has been through for the last 17 years, anything will be an improvement.

Charlie Beck has balls.

How ridiculous for "La Lydia" to state that the majority of L.A. is hispanic and therefore the police chief should be hispanic! If she wants a hispanic country she should go to Mexico which is the perfect example of a hispanic majority with hispanic police and goverenment. The closer we get to that, the closer we get to a third world impoverished welfare society overwrought with corruption, gangs, and ghetto neighborhoods filled with disrepectful lawbreaking uneducated American hating people just like her beloved Mexico!

What in the world is Vocational Arts/Occupational Studies? That sounds like one of those degrees by mail from some third world country. That should come in handy in the Administration of Justice...not to mention the running of a department as complex as the LAPD. Why not choose a candidate a candidate with an Art History Degree?

Anyone who opposes Chief Beck because he is "not a native Spanish speaker" and "not Hispanic" is just as bigoted as someone who opposes President Obama because he "does not represent the white majority in the U.S."

Charlie Beck has already proven by his work in renovating the corruption-riddled Rampart Division of the LAPD that he is quite capable of understanding and relating to Angelenos of all races and ethnic groups.


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