By Michael Goldstein
By Dennis Romero
By Sarah Fenske
By Matthew Mullins
By Patrick Range McDonald
By LA Weekly
By Dennis Romero
By Simone Wilson
¬†[ABOUT NATE HOLDEN AND BERNARD PARKS:]
L.A. WEEKLY:You made a point of saying before we even asked that you’re definitely not Nate Holden. Why do make that point? And more importantly, how are you not Nate Holden? What would you do differently?
DERON WILLIAMS: It’s two-fold. Number one: The reason that I’m not Nate Holden is that I’m Deron Williams. Two different individuals. My goal is hands-on working with the constituents. My goal now, as far as my vision, is making sure, and what we’re spinning off on, is making sure the district is one of the most vibrant, desirable locations in the city of Los Angeles. There’s a lot of things Holden and I disagree on.Such as?
Such as the consent decree, neighborhood councils, senior lead officers, secession.Be more specific.
With the secession, I believed we should have kept the city together. Our district is the heart of the city of Los Angeles. When you take away the heart, you lose everything. I want to make sure our district is staying together. When you talk about senior lead officers – I’ve worked with the senior lead officers from literally day one [on graffiti cleanups and other community efforts]. I’ve built relationships with those senior lead officers.Did Nate oppose the senior lead officers so much, or was it more of an effort to show solidarity with the policies of Chief Bernie Parks?
I don’t know about that. What I can tell you about is what I’ve done. And what I’ve done is make sure that I work closely with the senior lead officers to make sure that the residents are getting the resources they truly need and deserve. When you remove the senior lead officers from working with the community, it doesn’t create that cohesiveness. What I’ve done is work closely with the senior lead officers so that they can make sure resources go to the community. And make sure that residents have the opportunity to know who their senior lead officer is, so that they can build a relationship with them. That’s what it’s all about.
So when you talk about even William Bratton, the [new] chief of police, we’ve got to give the person an opportunity to serve. We have to bring the city together in order to make sure that everyone’s working together. You can’t be divisive and create divisive wedges where our city is suffering right now . . . We need to bring this city together. We need to bring our district together. And we need to do it now . . .What were some other differences with Nate on policy?
He was opposed to the consent decree as well as the Christopher Commission report. Right now our police department morale is low. We need to build the police department to full strength in order for them to resolve the problems throughout the city. The consent decree, where we had to have a federal monitor come monitor the police department, is absurd. We had the Christopher report that was established and we should need to work on that process first, where the city as a whole – we can’t afford, as I mentioned earlier, to continue to lose what we have . . . We must, we must continue to build our city from all levels, from an economic standpoint to a social standpoint.You mean the fact that there had to be a consent decree is absurd, but you support the decree?
Yes, I do. One hundred percent.Do you think Bernie Parks should have been replaced as police chief?
Well there’s time for change. There’s a time for new leadership. As I’ve stated before, I’ve worked with the police department for 14 years. I’ve worked under the Daryl Gates administration, under Willie Williams, then Parks and now Bratton. So I’ve had an opportunity close up to see a lot of chiefs and transitions.That sounded almost like a yes.
The point I’m trying to make is that right now, we need to build on what we have, instead of looking back.Three council members opposed Hahn’s decision to replace Chief Parks. One of them was Nate Holden. How would you have voted?
I wouldn’t have voted just on race. I would have taken a look at what’s important.I realize I’m pushing you toward answering a difficult question.
It’s not a difficult question.But you haven’t answered it yet.
I would have. What I’ve got from the community is that the police department morale was down. The department wanted a change. They wanted someone that could come in with new leadership to take the department to a new level. And I’ve heard from the community that they really wanted the senior lead officers. That they wanted the senior lead officers to work closely with them to get the resources in their respective communities . . . To answer your question, I would have taken a look at it and said, "Mr. Parks, we have to see what we have to do in order to move the city forward." Right now, we’re moving the city forward in a way that Parks is no longer the chief of police. My goal is to make sure the residents of the district get the resources they truly need.
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