Los Angeles Police Department Chief Charlie Beck retires on his 65th birthday next month after 42 years in the department and eight and a half years as chief.
He said he is retiring early to ensure his successor will be someone who he can support. At the time of the Newsmakers taping, the chief would not confirm the three finalists under consideration by the mayor but says all three are "solid leaders." They were chosen by the police commission from the pool of applicants. The mayor's choice faces final approval from the City Council.
If there's one legacy Beck would like to be remembered for, it's the concept of constitutional policing. It's applying federal laws on civil rights to local enforcement. He maintains his support for Special Order 40, prohibiting LAPD officers from carrying out federal immigration policy. He said if undocumented residents are fearful to go to the police, we are all less safe.
Beck said he is not retiring because activists were calling for his ouster. He said America is looking in a mirror when it sees a violent society, and the problem is far deeper.
The homeless crisis is the biggest issue facing the new chief, says Beck, and "You can't arrest your way out of homelessness."
His final word to the rank and file: "Do the right thing because this is who you are, not because it's what you're told," because "that's the kind of cops that I want to come into people's homes on their worst day."
LAPD Chief Charlie Beck looks at legacy