Jason Kandel

‘I Didn't Want My Badge Number to Die'

A trailblazing detective passes on her badge.

It was moment of personal accomplishment, and department history.

On Thursday morning, retired Los Angeles Police Department Lt. Helen Kidder passed on her badge to newly promoted Lt. Kelly Muniz.

"I didn't want my badge number to die," Kidder said. "I wanted to give it to a strong woman to carry it on."

Usually when badges are passed on, it is from one family member to another.

In a tweet posted by the LAPD, they noted this unusual move as part of #WomensHistoryMonth.

Muniz, formerly a sergeant with the Metro Division, will now serve with the Hollywood Division.

Kidder was the first woman to be officially appointed detective to the homicide division.

She then became half of the city's first female homicide team in 1979. Kidder along with Detective Margaret York were highly successful and highly regarded, contributing to their unit's high solve rates for murders.

Kidder and York were the only female homicide team in the country, and even inspired the 1980s television show "Cagney and Lacey."

According to the January 2018 Sworn and Civilian Report, there are a total 1,860 female officers serving in the LAPD. Fifty of them are of lieutenant rank, which is less than a quarter of the 226 male lieutenants.

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