Bonnie Davenport, the formerly male police officer who underwent a recent sex change operation, will return to duty today as a scooter patrol officer in the District of Columbia's 4th District, where she had previously been assigned.
Deputy Chief Charles M. Troublefield, the 4th District commander, said that Davenport, 36, the city's first transsexual officer, would begin work this morning as an officer in a nine-member motor scooter patrol squad, a tactical crime-fighting unit. The 4th District includes the Georgia Avenue, 16th Street and North Capitol Street corridors of upper Northwest and Northeast Washington.
Davenport, an eight-year police veteran, said in an interview last week that she has been giver her old badge-No. 18-and a new .38 caliber service revolver. She said she had requested reassignment to the 4th District, where she believed she had already earned the respect of her colleagues.
Troublefield, who was her commander before she went on leave about a year ago to prepare for sex change surgery, said he expected Davenport to be accepted by 4th District personnel. "There will probably be an adjustment period, perhaps a few minor problems. But [Davenport] was a good police officer-conscientious, dedicated and capable-and I think she will be a good police officer again," Troublefield said.
Davenport will return to duty after nearly two months of retraining, including firearms qualification. "I have been certified in every critical area of the Police Department operation," she said last week, adding that she scored a 94 percent average in the retraining program.
In late January, Davenport had been certified as fit to return to work by doctors at the D.C. Fire and Police Clinic. Doctors had cautioned that Davenport should perform only light duty until completely recovering from her sex change operation, but police say she is now permitted to return to regular police patrol.
The officer, who was then Ormus W. Davenport III, underwent sex change suregery last November at a Colorado hospital.