Berkow Named in Another Lawsuit

Police Chief Michael Berkow facing more allegations
Police Chief Michael Berkow facing more allegations
Los Angeles lawsuit claims discrimination
Los Angeles lawsuit claims discrimination

New information about Savannah's embattled police chief Michael Berkow.

Another lawsuit in Los Angeles claims Chief Berkow and LAPD Chief William Bratton discriminated against several qualified officers because of their race or disability.

Five of Berkow's former Critical Incident Investigation Division officers have brought the suit against the city of Los Angeles. Berkow himself is not being sued, but is named in several discrimination complaints which are key to the suit.

In complaints obtained by WTOC, the current and former officers say their rights were violated when then LA Deputy Chief Berkow transferred them out of the CIID because of their race or disability. Those officers are now suing the LAPD for violating the California fair employment and housing act. That case is supposed to go to trial in March.

This is in addition to another lawsuit that claims Berkow would give special treatment to women who would sleep with him. During a deposition in that case, Berkow admitted to having an affair with another female officer.

Chief Berkow has said he is confident that lawsuit will be dismissed. It's set for trial in September.

Meanwhile, the Chatham County Commission wants the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to look into all the allegations against Berkow. According to Commission Chairman Pete Liakakis, it would not be a criminal investigation, but more of a fact finding mission.

The Savannah City Council also has to agree to bring in the GBI. Sources say the Mayor did send out a questionnaire asking council members if they wanted the GBI to get involved, but no word on what, if anything they decided.

PERF, the search firm that helped choose Berkow is coming to Savannah to hopefully help answer some questions about why Berkow was chosen. They will hold a special briefing for council and commissioners next Wednesday.

They plan to give a full report on the background investigation and pending litigation involving the chief.

Reported by: Andrew Davis,