Tag Archives: LAPD Media Relations Division

Josh Rubenstein Apparently Calls Black LAPD Officers “Boys” — Right To Their Faces — And When His African-American Subordinate Raymond Brown Complained Repeatedly Rubenstein And His Media Relations Sidekick Patricia Sandoval Apparently Told Him He’d Never Get Promoted — And Then Apparently Didn’t Promote Him At Least Twice — So In May Brown Filed A Suit Against The City Of Los Angeles — It’s Worth Reading And There’s A Copy Right Here For You!

On a date in or around late 2017, Director Josh Rubenstein greeted the officers in Media Relations Division’s open office space as “ladies, gents, and officers” and, immediately thereafter, approached the Online Unit office and stated, “How are you boys?” At the time, only Plaintiff and Police Officer III Lyle Knight were present in the Online Unit office. Both Plaintiff and Officer Knight are African-American. Within approximately one week, Rubenstein again asked Plaintiff and Officer Knight, “How are you boys?” Just days later, Rubenstein addressed Plaintiff and Officer Knight as “boys” for a third time. This time, however, Rubenstein did so in a snide and mocking tone of voice. Moreover, Rubenstein said “boys” so loudly that even Sgt. Preciado, who was sitting both outside of and a significant distance away from the Online Unit office, heard it.

Raymond Brown v. City of Los Angeles

The Los Angeles Police Department gets sued. It gets sued a lot. And it’s not just their civilian victims suing them. It turns out that an organization dedicated to violence, secrecy, machismo, and the defense of capital is, who’d have thought, not a very nice place to work. Which is why their own employees sue the LAPD a lot also.

Like for instance just last year LAPD Media Relations Officer Frank Preciado sued, alleging that his supervisor Josh Rubenstein1 didn’t allow Preciado and others to speak Spanish in the office. Preciado also alleged that Rubenstein banned Media Relations employees from tuning in to Spanish Language TV on the Department’s monitors.

The situation is not only discriminatory according to Preciado but, given that his official duties include speaking to Spanish language media folks, it also prevents him from doing his job properly. Rubenstein is LAPD’s most visible Anglophone public information officer. The dude is everywhere and he’s always got time for the media. Unless, I guess, they’re working in Spanish.

Preciado’s suit got some media attention in 2019 when it was filed, but not much since. That little bit is more than Raymond Brown’s suit, filed in May 2020, received, though. And Brown’s suit also hinges on Rubenstein’s weirdo antics, in particular the fact that apparently Rubenstein thinks it’s acceptable to refer to Black LAPD officers as “boys”.
Continue reading Josh Rubenstein Apparently Calls Black LAPD Officers “Boys” — Right To Their Faces — And When His African-American Subordinate Raymond Brown Complained Repeatedly Rubenstein And His Media Relations Sidekick Patricia Sandoval Apparently Told Him He’d Never Get Promoted — And Then Apparently Didn’t Promote Him At Least Twice — So In May Brown Filed A Suit Against The City Of Los Angeles — It’s Worth Reading And There’s A Copy Right Here For You!

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L.A. Times 2018 Move To El Segundo Left Reporters With Insufficient Office Space Downtown — Reduced Them To Begging City Departments For Places To Work — Perhaps It’s Not So Easy To Maintain Journalistic Independence When You Have To Ask The LAPD For Permission To Charge Your Phone In Their Building — And They Tell You “Sure But Not Every Day, K?”

Remember in April 2018 when Patrick Soon-Shiong bought the L.A. Times and promptly announced that he was moving the headquarters from the historic building at First and Spring, which Tribune Media sold to Canadian real estate developers Onni Group in 2016, to El Freaking Segundo because Onni had proposed to jack up their rent by one million dollars per month? And soon thereafter Executive Editor Norman Pearlstine attempted to assuage everyone’s fears by telling the Columbia Journalism Review stuff like this:

… we are keeping a presence downtown. We will have an office with several dozen seats in it, and I would expect we’d probably have a pretty senior editor here responsible for it. Secondly, without taking away from the importance of physical location of where your desk is, it’s more important to talk about where your reporters are.

But recently I laid my hands on a big pile of emails between Times reporters and the LAPD’s Media Relations Division. You can browse these here on Archive.Org, and there is a ton of interesting stuff in there, although it’s mostly if not wholly off-topic for this blog. And there is also this email conversation from July 2018 between LA Times police reporter Cindy Chang and Media Relations commander in chief Patricia Sandoval. And this tells a slightly different story than Norman Pearlstine’s Pollyannaistic whiggery!1

From: Chang, Cindy
Sent: Monday, July 02, 2018 10:36 AM
To: Patricia Sandoval <25981@lapd.online>
Cc: Joshua Rubenstein <n5373@lapd.online>
Subject: press office at LAPD

Hi Trish,

There’s a press office on the first floor of PAB, correct? As we’re moving to El Segundo, we’re trying to tabulate the office space available in the agencies we cover. Our downtown bureau won’t have many seats, so other options will be helpful.

I’m off the early part of this week. Would it be possible to see the space later this week or next week?

Cindy Chang

Staff writer, Los Angeles Times
cindv.chanq@latimes.com

213.237.7016

And turn the page for the rest of the story!
Continue reading L.A. Times 2018 Move To El Segundo Left Reporters With Insufficient Office Space Downtown — Reduced Them To Begging City Departments For Places To Work — Perhaps It’s Not So Easy To Maintain Journalistic Independence When You Have To Ask The LAPD For Permission To Charge Your Phone In Their Building — And They Tell You “Sure But Not Every Day, K?”

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