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Police chief remains on leave, but for how long?

on March 2, 2022

Richmond Police Chief Bisa French and her husband, Oakland police Sgt. Lee French, remain on administrative leave from their jobs a month after the Contra Costa County district attorney declined to file charges against them. 

The couple was accused in October of assaulting a family member and threatening that person’s boyfriend, in a case that was being investigated in Contra Costa and Solano counties. The San Jose Mercury News reported that the Solano County district attorney also will not file charges. 

Contra Costa district attorney’s assistant Bobbi Mauler confirmed recently that the Frenches would not be facing criminal charges but had no further comment. 

The Frenches’ attorney, Michael Rains, did not respond to multiple calls for comment. 

Richmond Mayor Tom Butt said he does not know when French will be returning from administrative leave.

The strategic communications manager for the Oakland Police Department, Paul Chambers, declined to comment on when or if Lee French had returned to work, saying the department’s internal investigation of the matter is ongoing. 

Richmond Police Department public information officer Lt. Matt Stonebraker said he did not know when French would return. And interim city manager Shasa Curl did not respond to requests for comment.

French became Richmond’s first female police chief in 2019. Assistant Chief Louie Tirona is the acting chief while she is on leave.

An 18-year-old relative filed a restraining order against the Frenches on Oct. 7, alleging the couple pushed her, pinned her in a police hold, and twisted her arm and hand during an argument at their residence. The woman also alleged that the Frenches threatened her boyfriend, Joe Goldman. 

Goldman, also known as Oho McNair, was charged with pimping, human trafficking, and pandering from an alleged incident in June. He denied the charges. And they were dismissed by an Alameda County judge in December. 


  1. Marianne Farina on March 31, 2022 at 12:46 pm

    I have known Bisa since she was a teenager and she has always been upstanding! I support her fully !

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