Mark Smith was appointed as the Inspector General (IG) of the Los Angeles Police Department in February 2018. He has spent his professional career overseeing and advising law enforcement agencies of varied size and geographic location. Mr. Smith’s initial experiences within the oversight field came as a legal intern and, subsequently, as a full-time Special Investigator with the Los Angeles Police Commission’s Office of Inspector General – the same office to which he has been honored to now return as IG.
Prior to his appointment as LAPD’s Inspector General, Mr. Smith was a Constitutional Policing Advisor with the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department (LASD). Among other things, he was responsible for advising the Sheriff on issues related to accountability, adherence to best practices, policies, procedures, and operations; providing real-time monitoring, analysis, and advice to LASD investigators and executives on pending personnel investigations and disciplinary matters; and responding to critical incidents including in-custody deaths, deputy-involved shootings, and significant use of force incidents.
Before working with LASD, Mr. Smith was selected to be the first-ever Independent Police Auditor for the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART), where he developed the Office of the Independent Police Auditor (OIPA) from the ground up. OIPA was responsible for investigating allegations of misconduct; reviewing BART Police Department investigations; recommending changes to policy; developing an alternative dispute resolution process for complaints; and engaging in a robust program of community outreach.
Prior to his appointment at BART, Mr. Smith was the First Deputy Chief Administrator of Chicago’s Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA). As First Deputy, Mr. Smith established internal policies to effectively and efficiently allow IPRA to meet its goals and obligations; supervised the day-to-day operations of the office; directed investigations into officer-involved shootings and complaints of excessive force; and represented IPRA at community events and meetings with other law enforcement agencies.
Mr. Smith has also served on the Board of Directors of the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of California at Berkeley and a Juris Doctorate from the University of California at Los Angeles School of Law.