LOS ANGELES (AP) — Three recent incidents in which Los Angeles police officers are accused of using excessive force are threatening to undo the Police Department's efforts to bolster community relations.
Video captured officers punching a handcuffed suspect and slamming a restrained woman to the ground. In the third case, a woman died in the back of a patrol car.
The incidents come after years of reforms by the Police Department to improve its officers' conduct.
The effort has yielded results: The city's crime rate is the lowest in four decades, and police are getting praise from communities, including minorities and gays, that had historically complained about mistreatment.
But the recent incidents underscore that for some police officers on the street, the line on acceptable use of force remains blurry.