Our Work

Our Vision

The vision of the Civilian Oversight Commission is to facilitate public transparency and accountability with respect to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.  

Our Mission

The Commission provides ongoing review, analysis and oversight of the Sheriff's Department’s policies, practices and procedures. They build bridges between the department and the public, and recommend solutions to advise the Board, the Sheriff’s Department and the public. Striving to perform its duties in a thorough, impartial, and transparent manner, the Commission demonstrates credibility, and enhances trust and respect. The Commission welcomes community involvement and provides for opportunities for robust public engagement.


The Commission

In its November 1, 2016 action, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors appointed nine commissioners to serve on the panel and approved hiring an executive director, attorney Brian K. WilliamsFive members are nominated from each Supervisorial District, and four additional members are appointed by the entire Board. Commissioners' diverse backgrounds include community & faith leaders, a retired Sheriff's Department Lieutenant, a former federal judge & attorneys with a broad range of experiences—from former prosecutors & public defenders to professors & executives from nonprofit organizations . They are:

  • Priscilla Ocen, Commission Chair, Loyola Law School Associate Professor, appointed 11-1-2016 by the Board of Supervisors
  • Sean Kennedy, Commission Vice Chair, executive director of Center for Juvenile Law & Policy at Loyola Law School and former federal public defender, appointed 11-1-2016 by the Board of Supervisors
  • Robert C. Bonner, attorney and former U.S. Attorney and DEA Administrator, appointed 11-1-2016 by Supervisor Antonovich, reappointed 7-24-2018 by Supervisor Barger
  • Patti Giggans, Executive Director of Peace Over Violence, appointed 11-24-2016 by Supervisor Kuehl, reappointed 7-24-2018
  • James P. Harris, former Sheriff’s lieutenant, appointed 11-1-2016 by Supervisor Knabe, reappointed 7-1-2017 by Supervisor Hahn
  • Lael Rubin, Former Deputy District Attorney, appointed 11-1-2016 by the Board of Supervisors, reappointed 7-24-2018
  • Xavier Thompson, President of Baptist Ministers’ Conference and Senior Pastor of the Southern Saint Paul Church, appointed 11-1-2016 by Supervisor Ridley-Thomas

See Commissioner biographies here.

Former Commissioners:

  • Casimiro U. Tolentino, former Administrative Law Judge for the State of California, appointed 7-24-2018 by the Board of Supervisors, end of term 11-30-2021
  • Hernán Vera, attorney and former president and CEO of Public Counsel, appointed 11-1-2016 by Supervisor Solis, end of term 11-21-2020
  • Heather MillerRabbi, Beth Chayim Chadashim, appointed 11-1-2016 by the Board of Supervisors, end of term 6-28-2018

Our Jurisdiction

Los Angeles County is the nation's largest county by population. A subdivision of the State of California, the County of Los Angeles is charged with providing numerous services that affect the lives of 10 million residents who live throughout a sprawling 4,084 square miles of land. 

The Commission provides oversight for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, which is the nation's largest sheriff's department with approximately 18,000 employees. The law enforcement agency provides services to 42 incorporated cities and 141 unincorporated communities, courthouse security for the Superior Court of Los Angeles County, and the housing and transportation approximately 18,000 inmates daily within the county jail system, the nations largest county jail system.


On September 27, 2016, the Board approved an ordinance that created the Civilian Oversight Commission. The Commission is authorized by Chapter 3.79 of the Los Angeles County Code. View the historical documents from the seven-member working group that made recommendations on the creation of the Commission. The Commission abides by these Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission Bylaws.

 Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas and Supervisor Hilda L. Solis authored the December 2014 motion that started the process that led to the commission’s creation.

Milestones at a Glance

Actions Taken

Regular Monitoring

Under Review or Identified

  • Complaint process
  • Courtesy & professionalism
  • Bail reform
  • Medical care in the Jails
  • Use of tasers
  • Mental health training/ patrol arrests, etc.
  • Recruiting, staffing & funding, including in Internal Affairs Bureau & at L.A. County jails
  • New deputies probationary period & initial assignments in jails