After Bass announces 2 new L.A. Police Commission picks, a current member says she’s stepping down

The Los Angeles Police Commission will soon get a new look.

In their first meeting back after Mayor Karen Bass announced two appointments to the five-member board on Saturday, the current police commissioners discussed who’s leaving: Commission Vice President Eileen Decker said she’s stepping down.

Decker has served on the commission since 2018, including for two years as the board’s president. On Tuesday, after current Police Commission President William Briggs announced her impending departure, Decker spoke emotionally about working with the commission’s staff.

She also expressed a little surprise.

“I didn’t quite expect you to announce it this morning,” she said to Briggs.

Bass’ announcements of new picks for the commission came one week after the panel voted to keep Los Angeles Police Department Michel Moore in his job for another five-year term, if he stays that long.

Moore’s reappointment became a hot button issue as civil rights activists, during commission meetings and outside City Hall and LAPD headquarters, repeatedly demanded his firing.

With his formal review by the commission scheduled for December around the same time that Bass would be sworn in, the mayor asked the commission that month to delay their vote on Moore.

It was not clear, then, whether Bass would lean on the commission to let Moore go. But after several raucous public comment hearings, the commission unanimously voted to reappoint Moore. And Bass quickly endorsed his reappointment.

On Tuesday, Decker, herself a longtime federal prosecutor who once was the U.S. attorney for California’s Central District and an L.A. deputy mayor for public safety, said Moore deserved to stay in his job.

“It’s easy to criticize. But it’s very hard to do the work,” Decker said, addressing Moore. “You deserve a second term and you earned it.”

Decker said she was leaving her post as she prepares to take a new job. She did not detail what job that was.

After winning his election last November, Sheriff Robert Luna said Decker would serve as a member of his transition team.

Decker’s replacement will be one of the two appointments Bass announced over the weekend.

Bass announced the appointment of Dr. Errol G. Southers, a senior vice president at the University of Southern California overseeing the campus’ police, fire and emergency planning. He’s also a former FBI agent. The second appointment announced was Rasha Gerges Shields, an attorney who previously served as a prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Neither the commission nor the mayor’s office has said who else is leaving the police commission to make room for both appointments. Neither office responded to requests for comment on Tuesday.

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