The history of West Coast Detectives is long and filled with many accomplishments and awards with the most important being our thousands of satisfied clients. When we hear statements like, “We should do more then just pay you” or ” You got that result and that is all it cost” or “When I leave my business at night I leave with Peace of Mind for I know West Coast has done their job” and we could add thousands more to these.
One of the reasons for our success is our focus on prevention to avoid problems but when our clients have a breach we move quickly and with state of the art techniques to achieve the desired results in the most effective way possible.
Our firm was started by Jay Brantley in 1922 with offices in south Los Angeles and was taken over by Stanley Comstock in the early 1950’s and I took over from Mr.Comstock in 1977. The agency since its beginning has been a multi-service agency providing Investigations, Undercover Agents, Security, Executive Protection, Forensic Support and Training. Mr Comstock led West Coast as it became a national recognized leader in the security field. Mr. Comstock was active in helping guide the investigative and security service industry improve its self in California. He served two governors as the head of the private investigative board and was a force in developing the licensee and training requirements for our industry in California. Long before the state required any training West Coast had a training academy and background requirements for its 2000 employees.
Mr. Comstock was also at the fore front of developing new investigative techniques such as the use of polygraph, question documents and lab analysts. After taking over the agency I continued on with our industry development.
I expand West Coast into an International Agency with my interest in Counter Terrorism and involvement in the Middle East. My first book Hostile Intent talks more about that. In 1980 I established offices around the world in places like Hong Kong, Bangkok, London, Paris and many other locations to gather intelligence and have an operation force available to support our International clients. In the Middle 90’s I was one of the small group along with LAPD, FBI. Secret Service and others that formed the Threat Management Association to help prevent stalking of high profile media personalities.
Doing the 1980’s and prior to the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles I addressed hundreds of meetings on preventing terrorism at the Olympics and traveled with law enforcement groups to Europe to learn from counter terrorism groups there. I also help develop training formats and hands on seminars where experts came from Europe to speak to and train our terrorism units here who were just at their beginning stages. In 1990 I formed the West Coast Detectives Training Academy to train investigators and specialized security forces in a police academy approach with a 4 month training program. Doing the 80’s, 90’s and into the 21 century I appeared on numerous television & Radio shows, interviews and magazine articles about my career and work.
After 9-11 my focus was on world terrorism and out of that came my writing books on terrorism and particular how to prevent it. My focus while talking about violence has been to inform in such a way about this negative subject so people would leave feeling empowered and that they could make a difference.
One thing that has been constant is change and our industry has had lots of changes mainly in the tools of our trade. From the “Sam Spade” of 50 years ago pounding shoe leather to the high tech CSI agent we now have tools to assist us before we leave the office so we know a lot more about the suspect or a case before we ever go into the field so a case can move faster and the result be more accurate.
At the end of the day one thing doesn’t change and that is the client desire for reliable information that will help them make good decision and at West Coast Detectives that still, after 90 years, remains our commitment to our clients.
Looking back is good but more importantly is looking forward and we look to the future and for more effective ways to serve our clients.
Until next time, Be Safe. Phil Little