Cops Without Helmets Leads to Grievance

LOS ANGELES -- The union that represents Los Angeles police officers filed a class action grievance against the police department Friday claiming commanders violated policy when they told officers not to wear helmets at a pro-Palestinian rally.

According to the Los Angeles Police Protective Leagues, LAPD brass told officers not to wear protective headgear at a pro-Palestinian rally Jan. 10 outside the Federal Building in Westwood.

Of the 1,500 protesters, only two people were arrested for minor offenses, but police did not have their helmets, and one officer was sent to a hospital with a head injury, according to the LAPPL.

"Going against policy to take officers out of protective gear puts them unnecessarily at risk for serious or even fatal injuries," said Paul M. Weber, president of the Police Protective League.

"And sending police officers into potentially incendiary situations without proper protective gear puts the public at risk as well. Our officers are much more capable of protecting the public when they are not getting concussive injuries at the hands of demonstrators."

A spokesman for the LAPD said the department could not comment on the complaint.

Union officials said they will pursue legal action if they are not satisfied with the outcome.

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