Contents 1 Early years 2 Parker as chief 3 Death 4 In popular culture 5 See also 6 References 7 Further reading 8 External links

Early years[edit] Parker was born in Lead, South Dakota, and raised in Deadwood. His grandfather William H. Parker (1847-1908), was an American Civil War veteran who later served in Congress. The Parker family migrated to Los Angeles, California, in 1922, for better opportunities, when the city was advertised as the "white spot of America" during that period.[1] Parker originally wanted to be an attorney, and studied at several colleges before enrolling in 1926 at the University of the West's Los Angeles College of Law, an institution which operated in the 1920s and '30s. He joined the LAPD on August 8, 1927, and continued his legal studies. Parker graduated with an LL.B. degree in 1930 and passed the bar exam, but opted to continue with the police department instead of practicing law.[2] He served as an LAPD officer for 15 years before taking a leave to fight in World War II. He attained the rank of captain as a planner and organizer of prisoner detention and policing in Sardinia, Normandy, Munich, and Frankfurt. Parker received the Purple Heart after being wounded during the Normandy invasion. His other awards included the French Croix de Guerre with silver star and the Order of the Star of Italian Solidarity. After the war, Parker returned to the police department and rose through the ranks to captain, then inspector, and then one of the department's deputy chiefs.

Parker as chief[edit] Parker became police chief on August 9, 1950, and is credited with transforming the LAPD into a world-renowned law-enforcement agency. The department that he took over in 1950 was notoriously corrupt.[3] Seeing ward politics, with its heavy involvement by partisan groups in the police department and mingling of political circles with vice and corruption on the streets, led him to conclude that a differently organized police force was necessary to keep the peace. Parker's experience with military public relations in World War II was used to develop an effective media relations strategy for the police department.[citation needed] Thanks to shows such as Dragnet[4] and a steady stream of good publicity from local newspapers, he was highly admired nationwide. Parker was a guest on the television program What's My Line? on August 21, 1955. Under Parker's early term, the LAPD initiated a more professionalized force which institutionalized officers into an environment that was more answerable to administrative oversight than political representatives. Included in this change was a standardized police academy and more proactive policing methods, practices very similar to military peacekeeping methods to which he was exposed during the war.[1] Under Parker, the LAPD faced accusations of police brutality and racism towards the city's African American and Latino residents. According to a documentary commissioned by the LAPD in 2009, Parker supported the city's racist power structure, which he denied as late as the 1960s.[5] Some critics see Parker's policies as responsible for ongoing tensions between the LAPD and minorities. Although Parker testified to the Civil Rights Commission in 1959 that segregation was not a problem, in 1962, he ordered the desegregation of the LAPD.[1][6] When asked by the Commission about discrimination against minorities, he replied "I think the greatest dislocated minority in America today are the police."[7] Another aspect of changes initiated by Parker which changed the police force from one of a walking peace-force to a more militarized mobile response force, was a reduction in the size of the police force, in relation to the population. The term "Thin Blue Line" was coined by Parker.[1][3] Parker's experience with the numerically larger force of his early career led him to judge that fewer but more professional officers would mean less corruption. Additionally, the strategy of changing the beat posture to one of mobility led to change from foot patrols to one which favored police cars. Not incidentally, this also furthered Parker's belief that isolating his officers from the streets would reduce opportunities for corruption. However, Parker recognized that certain areas of the city and certain functions of the police department needed to remain rooted in the more traditional form of police work.[1] Although Parker reduced police corruption and cleaned up the overall image of the police, certain sections of the LAPD continued practices which lent more to an image of old semicorrupt control of vice and petty crime. The vice squad and reserve force continued to remain controversial elements of the police force. Parker also used elements of the reserve force such as the Organized Crime and Intelligence Division of the LAPD to keep tabs on suspected politicians and their mafia syndicate allies, as well as the notoriously corrupt and narcotic-ridden Hollywood movie industry system and its celebrities.[1] The 1990 novel and 1997 film L.A. Confidential along with the 2013 film Gangster Squad, provide fictional depictions of the LAPD under Parker during these years. Parker served on the Los Angeles County Civil Defense and Disaster Commission during the Cuban Missile Crisis in the early 1960s.[8]

Death[edit] Parker died of a heart attack on July 16, 1966, after attending a dinner where he received a commendation.[9] The LAPD's Police Administration Building on North Los Angeles Street was officially renamed Parker Center shortly after his death.[10]

In popular culture[edit] Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, a former LAPD officer, wrote speeches for Parker. Roddenberry is said to have modeled the character Mr. Spock after Parker.[1] Bruce Dern portrayed Parker in the 1996 movie Mulholland Falls. Nick Nolte portrayed Parker in the 2013 movie Gangster Squad. Neal McDonough portrayed Parker at the rank of captain in the 2013 television miniseries Mob City. In James Ellroy's 2014 novel Perfidia, a fictionalized version of William Parker is one of the four main protagonists in the story. Parker was also portrayed in Ellroy's 1990 novel L.A. Confidential and by John Mahon in Curtis Hanson's 1997 film adaptation. Parker's and contemporary gangster Mickey Cohen's biographies are represented in John Buntin's novel L.A. Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America's Most Seductive City (2010)

See also[edit] Biography portal Billy G. Mills (born 1929), Los Angeles City Council member, 1963–74, investigating the Watts riots

References[edit] ^ a b c d e f g h Buntin, John (2009). L.A. Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America's Most Seductive City. New York: Harmony Books. ISBN 9780307352071. OCLC 431334523. Retrieved 3 February 2013.  ^ ^ a b Randall Sullivan (2002-05-17), LAbyrinth: A Detective Investigates the Murders of Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G., the Implication of Death Row Records' Suge Knight, and the Origins of the Los Angeles Police Scandal, Atlantic Monthly Press, retrieved 2007-08-31  ^ Staff. "W.H. Parker (1905–1966) Miscellaneous Crew". Amazon via IMDb. Retrieved 8 March 2014.  ^ ^ ^ ^ "Businessman Appointed to Civil Defense Group". Los Angeles Times, December 3, 1961, p. WS22. ^ ^

Further reading[edit] Donovan, John T. (2005), "'I Have No Use For This Fellow Parker': William H. Parker of the LAPD and His Feud With J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI", Southern California Quarterly, 87 (2): 171–198, doi:10.2307/41172260  Kramer, Sarah Alisa (2007), William H. Parker and the Thin Blue Line: Politics, Public Relations and Policing in Postwar Los Angeles, Washington, D.C.: American University [Ph.D. diss.] 

External links[edit] Brief biography William H. Parker on IMDb William H. Parker at Find a Grave Police appointments Preceded by William A. Worton Chief of LAPD 1950–1966 Succeeded by Thad F. Brown v t e Chiefs of the Los Angeles Police Department 1876–1900 Gerkens Harris King Gard King Cuddy McCarthy Horner J. W. Davis Skinner Darcy Cuddy Loomis Benedict Cooney Burns Glass 1900–1926 Elton Hammell Auble Kern Broadhead Dishman Galloway Sebastian Snively Butler Home Murray Pendegast Jones Everington Oaks Vollmer Heath 1926–1950 J. E. Davis Steckel J. E. Davis Davidson Hohmann Horrall Worton 1950–2002 Parker Brown Reddin Murdock E. M. Davis Rock Gates Williams Lewis Parks 2002–present Pomeroy Bratton Downing Beck Authority control WorldCat Identities VIAF: 24160601 LCCN: no91001064 ISNI: 0000 0001 0960 1054 SUDOC: 086027379 Retrieved from "" Categories: 1905 births1966 deathsAmerican military personnel of World War IILos Angeles Police Department ChiefsPeople from Los AngelesUnited States Army soldiersHidden categories: Articles with hCardsAll articles with unsourced statementsArticles with unsourced statements from November 2012Find a Grave template with ID same as WikidataWikipedia articles with VIAF identifiersWikipedia articles with LCCN identifiersWikipedia articles with ISNI identifiers

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Lead, South DakotaUnited StatesLos Angeles, CaliforniaLos Angeles Police DepartmentChief Of PolicePolice ChiefLos Angeles Police DepartmentParker CenterLead, South DakotaDeadwood, South DakotaWilliam H. Parker (politician)American Civil WarUnited States House Of RepresentativesLos AngelesCaliforniaWhite AmericanBachelor Of LawsWorld War IICaptain (United States O-3)SardiniaNormandyMunichFrankfurtPurple HeartNormandy LandingsCroix De Guerre 1939–1945 (France)Order Of The Star Of Italian SolidarityWikipedia:Citation NeededDragnet (drama)What's My Line?Police BrutalityRacismAfrican AmericanHispanic And Latino AmericansCivil Rights CommissionDesegregationPolice CorruptionLAPD Metropolitan DivisionGangster Squad (LAPD)Los Angeles Crime FamilyCinema Of The United StatesL.A. ConfidentialGangster Squad (film)Los Angeles County Civil Defense And Disaster CommissionCuban Missile CrisisStar TrekGene RoddenberryMr. SpockBruce DernMulholland FallsNick NolteGangster Squad (film)Neal McDonoughMob CityJames EllroyPerfidia (James Ellroy Novel)ProtagonistsL.A. ConfidentialCurtis HansonL.A. Confidential (film)Portal:BiographyBilly G. MillsInternational Standard Book NumberSpecial:BookSources/9780307352071OCLCLos Angeles TimesJ. Edgar HooverFBIDigital Object IdentifierIMDbFind A GraveWilliam A. WortonList Of Los Angeles Police Department Chiefs Of PoliceThad F. BrownTemplate:LAPD Chief Of PoliceTemplate Talk:LAPD Chief Of PoliceList Of Los Angeles Police Department Chiefs Of PoliceJacob F. GerkensEmil HarrisHenry King (police Officer)George E. GardHenry King (police Officer)Thomas J. CuddyEdward McCarthyJohn Horner (police)Thomas J. CuddyJohn M. GlassWalter H. AubleEdward KernCharles E. SebastianJames W. EveringtonLouis D. OaksAugust VollmerR. Lee HeathJames E. Davis (police)Roy E. SteckelJames E. Davis (police)D. A. DavidsonArthur C. HohmannClemence B. HorrallWilliam A. WortonThad F. BrownThomas ReddinRoger E. MurdockEdward M. DavisRobert F. RockDaryl GatesWillie L. WilliamsBayan LewisBernard C. ParksMartin H. PomeroyWilliam J. BrattonMichael P. DowningCharlie BeckHelp:Authority ControlVirtual International Authority FileLibrary Of Congress Control NumberInternational Standard Name IdentifierSystème Universitaire De DocumentationHelp:CategoryCategory:1905 BirthsCategory:1966 DeathsCategory:American Military Personnel Of World War IICategory:Los Angeles Police Department ChiefsCategory:People From Los AngelesCategory:United States Army SoldiersCategory:Articles With HCardsCategory:All Articles With Unsourced StatementsCategory:Articles With Unsourced Statements From November 2012Category:Find A Grave Template With ID Same As WikidataCategory:Wikipedia Articles With VIAF IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With LCCN IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With ISNI IdentifiersDiscussion About Edits From This IP Address [n]A List Of Edits Made From This IP Address [y]View The Content Page [c]Discussion About The Content Page [t]Edit This Page [e]Visit The Main Page [z]Guides To Browsing WikipediaFeatured Content – The Best Of WikipediaFind Background Information On Current EventsLoad A Random Article [x]Guidance On How To Use And Edit WikipediaFind Out About WikipediaAbout The Project, What You Can Do, Where To Find ThingsA List Of Recent Changes In The Wiki [r]List Of All English Wikipedia Pages Containing Links To This Page [j]Recent Changes In Pages Linked From This Page [k]Upload Files [u]A List Of All Special Pages [q]Wikipedia:AboutWikipedia:General Disclaimer

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