(Part 2) LAPD Captain Ann E. Young: community involvement

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As mentioned in the kick-off post, Captain Ann E. Young (Capt. Young), has held a variety of positions as she’s grown through the ranks within the LAPD.  Not being familiar with the various divisions within the LAPD or any police force, I wanted to get a better understanding of Capt. Young’s specific responsibilities at the moment and probe a little more into some of her community involvement.

Affrodite:  What are you commanding?

Capt. Young:  Right now, I’m the commanding officer of the Detective Support and Vice Division which I have citywide for all vice operations as well [including] prostitutes, pimps, pandering, massage parlors, ladies of the evening, all that stuff.  In addition to that, I have the Threat Management Unit which they investigate celebrities that are being stalked or workplace violence cases, missing persons…I have the Mental Evaluation Unit where our officers actually go out in the field and make arrests or take into custody those that are determined to be mentally ill.  I have all of the court liaisons, and that’s it.  I have 180 employees that report to me in this command.

When Capt. Young said “that’s it,” I was literally left speechless.  There are so many critical operations that fall within her command.  Additionally, Capt. Young’s involvement does not simply stop at day-to-day operations.  There were a host of other activities in which Capt. Young actively supports.  Even as we continued to talk about the Los Angeles FOX 11 news segment, “Wednesday’s Child” that aired the night before and featured a young man named Christopher who was interested in being a police officer, it only represented one of many community programs in which Capt. Young is involved.

More on FOX 11 LA “Wednesday’s Child: Christopher”

Capt. Young:  Christine Devine [from FOX 11] is trying to showcase and spotlight these children that are older children and show that they’re not on drugs.  They’re not in gangs.  They’re just normal boys and girls just like anyone else, you know, that are looking for mentorship to get them out of that life because when they turn 18, you’re [released from the foster care system].

Affrodite:  No more support?

Capt. Young:  No more support.  Then they might turn to to drugs or some other type of life if they haven’t already planned…We want to stay in contact with [Christopher] because we have programs for children his age…like the Explorer program…It’s like a police cadette type program where at that age they go through an Academy for a couple of weeks and then they’re attached to that police station. They participate in different events…and work at the police station on little jobs…go on field trips…It’s a good coordinated program.  We try to keep them straight so then when they’re able to at 18, 19, and 20, they can join a police department or join a fire department or go to school.

Mary Magdalene Project

Affrodite:  Tell me about the drop-in center for women that you are involved.

Capt. Young: I’m on the Board of Directors.  It’s out in the Valley.  It’s called the Mary Magdalene Project (www.mmp.org) and it’s a drop in center for prostitute women that we’re trying to, again, get them off the street and get them into some type of program.

She went on to explain how they’re trying to model the Mary Magdalene Project after the SAGE Project (Standing Against Global Exploitation – www.sagesf.org) in San Francisco.  Capt. Young continues:

Prostitution is something that’s ingrained over time.  These women are truly victims.  They started at a very young age, and this sometimes is all they know.  So, hopefully, our drop in center will turn into a live-in center.  Right now, they show up for resources.  They show up for counseling and then they go back out…We’re starting with baby steps…You’ve got to change the whole mindset of that young lady.  You’ve got to turn her around to where she feels the confidence that she needs to be able to go back out into the street and not go back into the life.  Get an apartment, use the resources to get a job, clean up.

La Cienega School

Affrodite: I know you’ve gotten involved in a new project with one of the inner city schools. Can you tell me about that?

Capt. Young: Cienega Elementary School in LA. We’re trying to…work on a program to bring that entire school up to the Police Academy and put on a demonstration, similar to what we did with Christopher but…we’ll be bringing maybe 800 kids out there.  Then, we’re going to join with that school to see if there’s some programs that we can develop to where it’s an ongoing basis where they can use the Police Academy or use the Museum of Tolerance because we’ve done some work with them, too.

In the next post, you’ll hear Capt. Young recall a memorable yet chilling story from her work experience.

Related Links

affrodite.net- all Capt. Young interview posts

FOX 11 News- Wednesday’s Child: Christopher

LAPD official website- Captain Ann E. Young (BIO)

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