On March 27, 1992, minority officers of the Los Angeles Police Department filed two complaints against their employer, along with a proposed consent decree, in the United States District Court, Central District of California. The plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, asked the court for declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging violations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U. S. C. § 1981, and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act. Specifically, plaintiffs claimed that minority LAPD officers discriminatorily were denied promotions, assignments to mobility-enhancing positions, and pay grade advancements.
The underlying employment discrimination class action lawsuit was initiated on September 12, 1988, when the Latin American Law Enforcement Association filed an administrative complaint alleging employment discrimination against minority LAPD officers. A settlement in the form of a proposed consent decree was reached in late 1991, and was approved by the City Council on November 5, 1991. The proposed decree included an affirmative action plan providing goals and special programs designed to address the underrepresentation of African American, Hispanic, and Asian American sworn officers in promotions and other forms of advancement within the LAPD.
On August 25, 1992, the court (A. Wallace Tashima) approved the consent decree. The consent decree obligated the City to engage in vigorous good faith efforts to promote minority officers in proportion with their representation in the police department. The court, however, amended the terms of the decree in response to criticism from three white officers, changing it from a fixed term of 12 to 15 years to a maximum term of 15 years subject to the right of the City to move at any time to be relieved of its obligations upon a showing that the objectives of the decree had been satisfied. The time to appeal the final order expired on September 26, 1992. On October 16, 1992, the white officers filed their motion to intervene as of right. The district court denied the motion as untimely. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals (Judges Robert Beezer, Alex Kozinski, and Dorothy Wright Nelson) affirmed. Latin American Law Enforcement Association v. City of Los Angeles, 29 F.3d 633 (2d Cir. 1994).
On July 25, 2002, Plaintiffs filed an application for an order to show cause why the City should not be held in contempt of the consent decree . The Court issued an order to show cause on August 12, 2002. On August 11, 2003, the District Court (Judge Margaret M. Morrow) found that the City had violated several of its obligations under the Consent Decree and ordered limited discovery to determine an appropriate remedy.
On July 14, 2009, the District Court extended the termination date for the Consent Decree from August 26, 2009, until December 31, 2009.
On December 31, 2009, the District Court again extended the consent decree until February 1, 2010. The parties later stipulated to again extend the consent decree until March 22, 2010.
On March 22, 2010, the District Court denied Plaintiffs' motion to again extend the consent decree, confirming the termination date of March 22, 2010.Haley Waller - 08/17/2010