Nearly a week union members gave a no-confidence vote for Anaheim’s police chief, the union representing Huntington Beach police offered up a similar rejection of that city’s top cop, officials announced Wednesday.
Members of the Huntington Beach Police Officers Association voted 92 percent for a “no confidence” declaration on Chief Rob Handy, according to the union. All but 2 percent of the union’s members cast a ballot.
Messages left with city officials and Handy’s office were not immediately returned.
Union president Dave Humphreys said the organization did a management survey a year ago that flunked Handy in eight of nine “anchor categories.” Humphreys said the results of that survey were kept under wraps as union members “worked tirelessly” to address their issues with the chief.
Humphreys, however, added, “We can no longer remain silent on his lack of progress, solving problems and poor management.”
The primary complaints are his “totalitarian style” and a stagnant staffing level that hasn’t been bumped up in three decades, despite what officers view as a rise in crime in the city, Humphreys said.
Another issue the officers have with the chief is his advocacy of a DNA swab program from arrestees to “build a local data bank with the District Attorney’s Office,” according to the union.
“Police officers feared this was potentially illegal, violating the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution,” according to the union.
Calls to address concerns fell on deaf ears with the chief, but the District Attorney’s Office “amended and clarified it to help the officers and those implementing it since Handy only wanted his way — the wrong way,” according to the union.
The union also faulted Handy for “manipulating the selection process for various assignments or promotions and the lowering of hiring standards.” Also, the chief forced out “experienced and well-respected managers” through early retirement or other means when they “disagreed with his leadership,” according to the union.
Handy, who came to California from Arizona, which is a “right to work” state, has shown no interest in labor negotiations, the union claimed. Handy “has contempt for the tried-and-true process of labor and disregards nearly everything asked of him,” according to the union.
Union officials also claimed Handy left his previous brief stint in San Bernardino “under a similar cloud of prior management practices.”
Handy’s rebuke came six days after a “no confidence” vote in Anaheim police Chief Raul Quezada. Eighty-seven percent of Anaheim’s police cast a “no confidence” vote for Quezada.
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