Captain Paul A. Snell was born and raised in the Newton Area of South Los Angeles. He received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from Occidental College in Los Angeles in 1979, where presidential candidate Barack Obama was a freshman the same year.
He joined the LAPD in 1984 after serving two years as an officer with the Los Angeles World Airports. As a member of the Department, he has worked a variety of assignments including Southwest, Pacific, Wilshire, Hollywood and Newton Areas, Juvenile Division, the Office of Operations and the Office of the Inspector General, and he was the first Officer in Charge of the TEAMS II Development Unit. He also served as an aide to former Chief William Bratton before becoming Bratton’s adjutant in 2006.
In January 2010, Captain Snell was selected as the Commanding Officer of Criminal Gang/Homicide Division.
Captain Snell and his wife Judy have four children and seven grandchildren.