Gary Delagnes, a former president of the Police Officers Association made explosive claims in a sworn declaration that he submitted to a blue ribbon task force. The task force was set up by District Attorney Gascon to investigate allegations of homophobia and racism in the department. Among these allegations was that George Gascon had a close relationship with the Police Department that he criticizes as obstructionists. The allegations continue to assert that Gascon was unconcerned about its diversity. Additionally, George Gascon made a number of racially disparaging comments during a night out with union leaders.
Delagnes presented his declaration eight days after Gascon appeared before the panel and testified. He testified that the Police Union influences the capacity for a chief of police or a Police Commissioner to actualize reform. Delagnes served the force for 25 years. He was the POA president for 9 years prior to retiring in 2013. Delagnes remembers a 2010 dinner with Gascon, and Martin Halloran, the current POA president, along with a union representative in Cambridge, Massachusetts. They were gracing a police-union leadership forum hosted by Harvard Law School.
According to Delagnes, while at the dinner, Gascon was drinking heavily. As mentioned in this Youtube video, he continued to drink, he started reminiscing on his time with the LAPD. He made several statements that ridiculed minorities. Gascon became so loud that an African American client approached him and requested that he restrain from the ridicules because he was offending his family with his behavior. Halloran supported Delagnes account of events in an interview although he would not provide the specifics. Halloran noted that the declaration explained everything.
After receiving a copy of the sworn declaration, Alex Bastian, the spokesperson for the district attorney’s office, did not respond to Delagnes’ accusation directly. He noted that what Delagnes lacks in credibility, he compensates in imagination. In his account, Delagnes pointed out that he decided to speak out after Gascon notified the blue ribbon panel that he was more worried about the present condition of the Police Department than during his tenure at the helm of the department between 2009 and 2011. In Delagnes’ interpretation, it seemed Gascon had issues with the officers and leaders of its union during his time. According to him, there was no time when Chief Gascon said that he believed racial, sexual and gender orientation affected the San Francisco Police Department.
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