As a full-time resident of our beloved Peninsula, I was shocked and appalled to see the poor judgment of Long Beach Police Chief Flint Wright in the hiring of Duane Goodman, a former Seattle Police Department police officer terminated for:
• Making derogatory social media posts violating SPD policy; • Endorsing violence against past and present elected officials in a malicious and threatening manner;
• A U.S. Secret Service investigation of Goodman for these documented actions;
• Making disparaging social media posts about illegal immigration, undercutting his department’s mission to fairly serve all members of their community;
• And being suspended for unnecessarily escalating an incident using threatening and inappropriate language, “behaving in a manner that made a fellow officer concerned for his safety.”
Seriously Chief Wright? In 2018 Goodman acknowledged his posts “were a mistake” and vowed “not to make a similar mistake in the future.” No apology. No remorse. His actions alone speak to his true character and beliefs, one that would be more of a liability and detrimental to our community rather than an asset.
Chief Wright claims that his Department “did their homework” in hiring Goodman and that “nothing concerning came up during the vetting process”, which included talking to former co-workers, family, and friends. Wright said they “talked to Goodman at length, and said he was regretful about the posts.” Of course he was regretful — he was fired from his job of 11 years as a result of his bad actions, resulting in the loss of income, benefits, and pension that position offered. Who wouldn’t be regretful? But that doesn’t change who he (Goodman) is or what he believes. Wright further stated “Best’s decision is her decision. She lives in a different world politically and in a different environment. Give him a chance.”
Really Chief Wright? A chance to do what? Further alienate your department from the residents and taxpayers of our community? To show bias or favoritism for those of different political beliefs or immigration status? Or are you saying Goodman’s past actions and behavior would be acceptable here on the Peninsula and be a good fit for your department?
Goodman’s past actions, public comments, and behavior only serves to show that he is not qualified for any position in law enforcement, and to think otherwise can only add to the liability brought about by having Goodman in such a position of authority here in Long Beach. If anything, such an appointment can only bring question to the good judgment of Chief Wright.
ROBERT M. PETROVSKI