Beverly Hills Police Chief Sandra Spagnoli will retire from the department effective May 15, 2020.The announcement came today in a statement by City Manager George Chavez.
Spagnoli joined the Beverly Hills Police Department (BHPD) in February of 2016 from the City of San Leandro, where she served as Chief since 2011.
“During the Chief’s tenure, crime was reduced while the department increased diversity, public outreach, best practices and advancements in technology,” said Chavez. “We thank Chief Spagnoli for her service to our community and her three decades of public service in law enforcement.”
Spagnoli’s tenure has been a costly one for the City, which has paid out millions in judgments, settlements and attorney’s fees in cases naming Spagnoli as a defendant.
As reported by the Courier, the most recent case was filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court on March 30 against Spagnoli and the City. Plaintiff Scott Dibble, a sergeant with the Beverly Hills Police Department, alleged causes of action for harassment, discrimination, failure to accommodate and retaliation.
Attorney Bradley C. Gage represents Dibble and most of the other plaintiffs in the actions against Spagnoli and the City. “What took them so long?” he told the Courier, when word leaked about Spagnoli’s departure.
“I have collected for my clients more than $7.5 million dollars with complaints against her alleging discrimination, harassment and retaliation. I have heard that my lawsuits helped to hasten this personnel change. Although it’s been a few years too late, it’s an important, necessary change. I still have other lawsuits pending against them,” he added.
Beverly Hills City Attorney Laurence S. Wiener provided this summary of the Spagnoli litigation thus far:
“Complaints were filed by eleven plaintiffs. Three received judgments, two did not. One is going to trial. One was just filed, and the rest settled,” Wiener told the Courier.
In the coming weeks, Chavez is expected to name an Interim Police Chief to replace Spagnoli, who marked her departure with the following statement:
“I am grateful to have served Beverly Hills and proud of the accomplishments over the past four years to keep this world-class community one of the safest in the nation,” she said.