The Latest: Oakland's interim chief had affair years ago

AP News
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Posted: Jun 15, 2016 10:55 PM

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on the removal of Oakland's interim police chief amid allegations that officers had sex with an underage girl (all times local):

7:30 p.m.

Bay Area Rapid Transit Police Chief says he has welcomed back to his department Ben Fairow, who was removed as Oakland interim police chief Wednesday after six days on the job.

BART Police Chief Kenton Rainey says Fairow informed him he had an affair with a consenting adult while married more than a decade ago.

Rainey says that doesn't preclude him from serving as a sworn law enforcement officer. He says Fairow has been reassigned as deputy police chief in the support services division.

Earlier Wednesday, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf announced she had removed Fairow after receiving information that led her to lose confidence in him. Schaaf wouldn't elaborate.

Fairow had been working as a deputy police chief at BART until he replaced Chief Sean Whent, who resigned last Thursday amid a sex scandal.

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2:45 p.m.

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf says she should have taken more time to vet the city's interim police chief before she named him to the job last week.

Libby Schaaf told reporters at a City Hall news conference Wednesday that she had a brief series of interviews with Ben Fairow before his appointment. But she says she felt comfortable quickly moving him into the position because he has a good reputation and she knew him from his previous work in the Oakland Police Department.

Libby Schaaf says her office was in the process of conducting a background check on Fairow when she received the information that led to her decision to remove him.

The mayor says an assistant chief will serve as acting chief while she takes more time to find an outside candidate to serve on an interim basis and conducts a nationwide search for a permanent chief.

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1:50 p.m.

The mayor of Oakland, California, has removed the interim police chief less than a week after appointing him amid a widening sex scandal.

Mayor Libby Schaaf says new information led her to lose confidence in Ben Fairow and called his Thursday appointment a mistake.

Schaaf's office declined to provide further details. The mayor has scheduled a news conference Wednesday afternoon at Oakland City Hall.

She appointed Fairow after Chief Sean Whent abruptly resigned last week amid allegations that several officers had sex with an underage girl.

Two Oakland officers have resigned, and three others have been placed on leave. Other law enforcement agencies in the area also are investigating possible misconduct by their officers.

Fairow had previously served as an assistant chief of the Bay Area Rapid Transit Police Department.