(FOX 11) - A police officer known for empowering works in one of the nation's worst areas for the homeless is now telling his story in a book. Deon Joseph says his memoir is that of an African American man who became a police officer and spent twenty-one years working Skid Row.
Joseph's book is titled "Stepping Across The Line, A Skid Row Cop's Story." It's the journey of what's led him to dedicating "his life to being a champion for the homeless." A book signing was held in downtown Los Angeles just blocks from the area he patrols.
News clips showed officer Joseph on the job with the LAPD where he's now Senior Lead Officer.
Joseph has been called by the media, the angel of Skid Row for his compassionate good works toward the homeless. He says his team has helped 100 homeless people to get off the streets.
In this audience at his book signing, a woman who credits the officer for saving her from Skid Row and suicide. She says she was petrified when she ended up on Skid Row. She says one day she was in the road and wanted to die when Officer Joseph drove up, got her out of the street, and into a shelter.
Machaela Gagnon now has an apartment, is taking college classes, and has worked to help others living on the streets. She calls Joseph a guardian angel to the homeless.
In his memoir Joseph tackles the homelessness crisis and what he believes are the causes. He says a change in laws has erased efforts to prevent crime and aid the mentally ill.
Joseph says the book reflects his beliefs, independent from the department.
Joseph credits his parents for a compassionate heart and his Christian faith. As his wife Toshi and three sons watched and help out you couldn't help but think of the saying "behind every good man is a good woman." Joseph teared up as he presented his wife Toshi with red roses.
This book is volume one of a two-part series.
Note: Deon Joseph was a guest on my podcast Olympic And Bundy. I introduced him at his book signing.
Stay tuned for podcast airing in the summer of 2019.