In his longshot bid to become Los Angeles County sheriff, Alex Villanueva succeeded by appealing both to a heavily Democratic constituency and the rank-and-file deputies he hoped to lead.
But part of his platform hinged on questioning some recent reforms that long have been a wedge between deputies and many progressive groups.
As Villanueva prepares to take office next week, there are growing concerns about the future of reforms imposed after a federal investigation found serious wrongdoing by top department officials and a culture of violence against inmates in the jails.
On the campaign trail, Villanueva, 55, lamented that deputies were being unfairly treated, criticized the requirements for reporting minor uses of force and suggested metal flashlights be reintroduced so that deputies could defend themselves against jail inmates.
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