Oakland’s police chief had a critical goal for 2019. Then came a dispute over a shooting

As the year began, Oakland Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick offered a list of goals for 2019 — and she saved perhaps the most ambitious for last.


By the end of the year, Kirkpatrick told the city’s Police Commission, she hoped to finally bring her agency into compliance with a federal judge’s order for reforms stemming from a 2-decade-old brutality case. The so-called Riders scandal has cost Oakland millions in taxpayer dollars and done immeasurable harm to the police force’s reputation.


But the effort to shed federal oversight has run into fresh tension, with a disputed investigation of a fatal police shooting derailing hard-won progress. Kirkpatrick finds herself at odds with the federal monitor tracking her reforms.


The mission of the Coalition for Police Accountability (“the Coalition” or CPA) is to advocate for accountability of the Oakland Police Department to the community so that the Oakland Police Department operates with equitable, just, constitutional, transparent policies and practices that reflect the values and engender the trust of the community.

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