UPDATE: Oakland Police Chief Abruptly Resigns Citing Health Problems

OAKLAND POLICE | Oakland Police Chief Howard resigned Wednesday morning citing medical reasons.

Jordan was named interim police chief in October 2011 within the thicket of the growing Occupy Oakland movement following the resignation of Anthony Batts, who was sharply critical of city administration’s torpid bureaucracy. Oakland Mayor Jean Quan officially named Jordan the permanent chief in February 2012.

His retirement ends 24 years at the department and comes at a time when long-avoided police reforms appear to be on the verge of implementation.

Federal Monitor Robert Warshaw has been highly critical of the pace of the department and administration’s adherence to reforms just as former Los Angeles and New York City Police Chief William Bratton was hired by the city as a consultant and the naming of former Baltimore Police Commissioner Thomas Frazier as compliance officer earlier this year.

Below is Jordan’s statement today:

This morning I advised City Administrator Deanna Santana that, effective immediately, I am on medical leave and taking steps toward medical retirement. This decision has been difficult, but necessary. Through my 24 years of wearing an OPD badge and uniform, I have emulated the Department’s core values: Honesty, Respect, and Integrity – values I observed in the men and women who worked with me and for me. I know that the members and civilian staff of the Department will carry on these values to generations to come. It has been an honor to serve the City of Oakland.

UPDATE: The East Bay Express reports Jordan’s unspecified medical condition is “serious,” according to Councilmember Libby Schaaf.

8 thoughts on “UPDATE: Oakland Police Chief Abruptly Resigns Citing Health Problems

  1. He could get a consulting job but there isn't much need for a consultant who can advise on how to work for a mayor that is incapable of making complete sentences, and mumbles incoherently


  2. He likely has a workers' comp claim which is public information with the local WCAB. Many cities use the disability retirement process to get rid of people they don't want employed. Police officers have legal presumptions of work related injuries being work related like cancer, heart attacks, etc. In all my years I have never seen a Chief go out on disability retirement unless he was likely to get fired and it was a way to just get rid of him.


  3. I wonder if we'll ever know his medical problem, even if he is granted a disability.
    He sure doesn't look sick. Stress, blood pressure, back problems, can all be treated.

    I just think, given his statements, it sure doesn't sound like something fatal in the next 10 years.


  4. Response to 2:00AM

    If the city of Oakland is in CalPERS the determination to grant him a disability retirement remains with the city. He just needs to be permanently disabled from performing the full duties of his job which could mean stress, heart , HBP, back problems etc. If granted the disability retirement he would not be able to go out and get another Police Chief job in the CalPERS system elsewhere in the state. I'm guessing he will try and get something in the private sector like consulting.


  5. His age, 47, but if he takes a medical retirement he can get almost as much pension as he would at 50.

    Medical can be very serious or very high blood pressure brought on by stress etc.
    I wonder what the definition is to qualify for medical retirement.

    Could be anything, but can be kept private I suppose. Former CC County Sheriff retired and died a few months later, but he was in office forever and his illness was unexpected.

    But here… told KGO-TV the following

    “”What I'm looking for is longevity, peace and harmony and to be able to watch my daughters graduate high school, from college … get married — all those fun things that people should do,” he said.

    Sounds like its not something that is fatal for many years to come as the above expectations seem like many many years into the future.


  6. “Implementing those onerous police reforms must have been a pain in the ass for retiring Oakland Police Chief Howard Jordan.”

    But is that kind of pain truly a “serious medical condition?”


  7. EBCitizen.com's claim that “Jordan was named interim police chief in October 2011 within the thicket of the growing Occupy Oakland movement” is factually incorrect.

    Occupy Oakland began on October 10, 2011. Jordan was sworn in as OPD Interim Chief three days later, on October 13, at which time Occupy's encampment at Ogawa Plaza consisted of only a few dozen tents—hardly forming a “thicket” on City Hall's expansive front lawn.


  8. He wasn't Chief material anyway so he is taking the easy way out with a CalPERS disability retirement since I don't think he is old enough (50)for a service retirement.


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