Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Statement as Acting Mayor on May 1 Protests

Under the charter, when the Mayor leaves the state of California, I become Acting Mayor. Following the confrontation in MacArthur Park last night, I spoke to Mayor Villaraigosa in San Salvador and released this statement to the media. I have remained in contact with the Mayor's office and with the Chief of Police.

I would like to acknowledge those who participated peacefully in today's protests for their civic spirit, their commitment to freedom of expression, and their dedication to finding a humane political solution to addressing one of our nation's most complex issues.

Hundreds of city personnel ensured that the city would keep running, including traffic officers who rerouted cars, public works employees who helped keep our infrastructure humming, and police officers who maintained public safety.

Towards late afternoon, a confrontation near MacArthur Park between police officers and protestors disrupted the overwhelmingly peaceful tenor of today's protests. I have spoken at length to Mayor Villaraigosa about the confrontation, and I assure all residents of Los Angeles that the leadership of this city will thoroughly review all available accounts of the conflict and will do everything possible to see that appropriate and thorough investigations are undertaken as more information about tonight's events becomes available.

Update: Along with the Chief of Police, the President of the Police Commission, and Councilmembers Reyes, Weiss, Huizar and Perry, I addressed the media about this issue today. My remarks are available here.