The police department for Oakland, Calif. lost its second police chief in less than a week on Wednesday, amid a scandal involving allegations of statutory rape of a sex worker by multiple officers.
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf announced the removal of interim police chief Ben Fairow on Wednesday. Schaaf had appointed Fairow to replace former chief Sean Whent, who stepped down last week, the Guardian reported.
“I have just received information that has caused me to lose confidence in Ben Fairow’s ability to lead the Oakland Police Department (OPD) at this particular moment in time,” Schaaf said in a statement, but did not give details about the information. “I made the decision to appoint Ben Fairow, I also own the decision to remove him. I firmly believe that when you make a mistake, you need to own it, and act quickly to correct it.”
The leadership shake-up comes after a few high-profile scandals have plagued the department and raised questions about widespread misconduct in the city’s police force. The sexual misconduct scandal follows accusations that late officer Brendan O’Brien killed his wife in 2014 and got away with it. O’Brien left a suicide note last year that led to investigations into sexual misconduct in the department.
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