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Racial Justice and Social Equity

Community group pushes for involvement, transparency in selecting CLERB's new executive officer

A North County group sent a letter to county and Citizens' Law Enforcement Review Board (CLERB) leaders Tuesday demanding community representation in the selection process for the new CLERB executive officer.

CLERB's last executive officer, Paul Parker, resigned in March.

Why it matters

Parker repeatedly pressed the review board to assert more oversight on in-custody deaths at county jails. According to county records, San Diego has documented a high number of deaths while in custody for more than a decade.

The problem is so severe the state auditor recommended state oversight in 2022.

Parker had pushed for scanning sheriff’s deputies on their way into county jails to prevent drug smuggling and overdoses. The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department has repeatedly resisted doing that despite similar recommendations from the state auditor and county grand jury.

Looking ahead

With Parker’s departure, Tom Packard with Showing Up For Racial Justice – North County wants the county to have a community member on the selection committee and for the county to select someone who will vigorously carry CLERB’s work forward.

“I think the key things that they need to get in the new executive is somebody with leadership ability that can look at that system strategically and help focus on what systems changes need to be made in the jails, not just minor procedural changes,” he said.

He sent a letter to county and CLERB leaders Tuesday evening signed by a coalition of community members outlining their concerns.

KPBS contacted the county for comments but didn't receive a response by deadline.

CLERB chair Eileen Delaney told the San Diego Union-Tribune in March she hopes to have a successor within two or three months.


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