"Office of the Inspector General Adds two New Assistant Inspectors General To Its Staff"
Los Angeles – The Office of the Inspector General for the Los Angeles Police Commission has added two former federal prosecutors to its staff. Both Samantha Phillips Jessner and André Birotte, Jr. join the staff as Assistant Inspectors General and will assist Inspector General Jeffrey C. Eglash in overseeing the handling of complaints of officer misconduct, monitoring the discipline process, conducting special investigations and projects, and fulfilling the obligations created by the consent decree.
"Mr. Birotte and Ms. Jessner are both outstanding attorneys with extensive experience in the criminal justice system, and they will enhance our ability to provide meaningful civilian oversight of the LAPD and to ensure full compliance with the federal consent decree," according to Eglash.
Mr. Birotte and Ms. Jessner collectively bring a wide range of experience to the office. Mr. Birotte holds an undergraduate degree from Tufts University, and a J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law. Following law school, he worked as a deputy public defender in Los Angeles. He then joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office, where he primarily prosecuted violent crime offenders. Mr. Birotte also investigated and prosecuted fraud and narcotics trafficking cases. He received numerous awards and commendations during his tenure in the office. Most recently, he practiced white collar and general commercial litigation with Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver & Hedges. Mr. Birotte was Treasurer of the Langston Bar Association and has served as a judge pro tem.
Ms. Jessner holds an undergraduate degree from Stanford University, and a J.D. from Boalt Hall School of Law. Following law school, she worked as an associate in litigation at Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton. She then joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office, where she was the deputy chief of the General Crimes Section. In addition, she prosecuted complex narcotics trafficking cases. She received the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service, among many other awards and commendations. Most recently, she was counsel for litigation for The Boeing Company. Ms. Jessner is an adjunct professor of Trial Advocacy at Loyola Law School and a member of the Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles and Black Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles.
The Office of Inspector General is one of the major Christopher Commission reform recommendations. The Inspector General, who reports to the Board of Police Commissioners, audits, investigates, and oversees the Police Department’s handling of complaints of misconduct by Department employees, and conducts its own investigations and investigations directed by the Board. As a result of the Rampart Independent Review Panel’s recommendations and obligations created by the consent decree, the Office of the Inspector General has increased its staff, which now includes two Assistants and one civilian investigator. One Assistant position was recently authorized by the City of Los Angeles; the other position became vacant when Assistant Inspector General Barbara M. Scheper was appointed by Governor Davis as a Superior Court Judge. Ms. Scheper currently serves on the Superior Court in Bellflower.
Eglash stated that Mr. Birotte and Ms. Jessner will conduct reviews of officer-involved shootings, will audit and oversee the internal discipline process, including complaints by officers regarding retaliation for reporting misconduct, and will handle special projects and investigations for the Inspector General and Police Commission.
For additional information, please contact Tamryn Catania at 213-485-3531.