Anaheim police chief cites “intolerable” working conditions, and union leaders say they want him out – Orange County Register

ANAHEIM – Police Chief Raul Quezada says his working conditions are “intolerable” and is taking steps in case he is pushed out.

Quezada made the charge in a claim filed against the city – just as the Anaheim Police Association was surveying rank-and-file officers about a vote of no confidence on him, which passed with 87 percent. Union leaders cite poor leadership.

“The current vote of no confidence – no matter what the result – caused entirely by the city’s lack of action and/or improper actions have damaged Quezada’s earning capacity, reputation, shattered his credibility and damaged his career likely beyond repair,” says the claim, which may end up being a precursor to a lawsuit.

Quezada’s attorney, John A. Girardi, said in an interview on Thursday it hasn’t been determined if the chief will take legal action against the city.

“Whatever the problems are, we hope they can be resolved without litigation,” he said. “He (Quezada) always has had a lot of support from the City Council, and there is no reason to think that has changed. He has had positive reviews and accolades.

“The vote of no confidence by the police association was disappointing, but we don’t think that reflects on the entire range of his work ethic or job performance,” Girardi said.

Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait declined to specifically comment on the claim, filed a week ago, because he hasn’t reviewed the document, said city spokesman Mike Lyster. A police spokesman said that Chief Quezada was not commenting, either, about it.

But earlier in the day the mayor showed support for the chief.

“When he came in, there was an issue of trust with the police and neighborhoods,” Tait said. “He’s made great strides in the community and that’s fundamental to having a safe city. Crime is down since he became chief. He’s brought along good changes. …

“If you ask people in the community, they’ll tell you the chief is a good man,” the mayor said.

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