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Dozens of policing shifts on Los Angeles County’s transit system went unfilled last week after Los Angeles Police Department officers called in absent nearly 700 times, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority said.

The absences, for overtime shifts with premium pay, came after Chief Michel Moore temporarily froze overtime for the LAPD.

The department spent $40 million in overtime during a week of protests over police brutality, systemic racism and the death of George Floyd, Moore told officers earlier this month. He said future overtime would be paid out with time off, rather than cash.

The LAPD’s $369-million, five-year contract to patrol Metro buses and trains in L.A. includes an agreement to staff 1,008 shifts per week, said LAPD spokesman Josh Rubenstein. Those shifts are filled by officers working overtime, he said.

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