Are We Helpless
to Prevent Massacres?
A Broken "System"
a Cop's Job (II)
Race and Ethnicity
On the One Hand...
But on the Other...
Does Legal Pot
Blows to the Head
Were Never O.K.
Hard Times in
the "Big Easy"
What Were They
Thinking? (Part II)
What Were They
Thinking? And, Why?
Massacres, in Slow-Mo
Good Law / Bad Law
Tenacity is Great -
Until It's Not
Cops v. Assault Weapons:
a Hopeless Situation
When a "Dope"
Can't be "Roped"
Myth or Reality?
In Two Fell Swoops
What's Up? Violence.
Ex-cops on Federal Trial
Who's in Charge?
What's Up With
Cause and Effect
"Woke" up, America!
Full Stop Ahead
Damn the Evidence -
Full Speed Ahead!
A Partner in Every Sense
Racial Quarrels Within Policing (II)
Within Policing (I)
Don't Like the Rules?
Regulate. Don't "Obfuscate".
The Craft of Policing
Is the "Cure" Worse
than the "Disease"?
Let's Stop Pretending
Trial of Derek Chauvin
Slugging it Out
Before the Fight
The Usual Victims
A Risky and Informed Decision
Want Happy Endings?
Cop? Terrorist? Both?
Chaos in D.C.
Third, Fourth & Fifth Chances
Select, Don't "Elect"
Was a Dope Roped?
Fix Those Neighborhoods!
When Must Cops
When Must Cops
L.A. Wants "Cahoots."
But Which "Cahoots"?
R.I.P. Proactive Policing?
White on Black
Black on Black
"SWAT" is a Verb
Should Police Treat the Whole Patient?
Turning Cops Into Liars
Violent and Vulnerable
Don't "Divest" - Invest!
Is it Ever OK to Shoot Someone in the Back? (II)
Gold Badges Can Be the Problem
Punishment Isn't a Cop's Job
But is it Really Satan?
A Conflicted Mission
6/7/23 A September 2022 charter flight supposedly ordered by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis transported 49
asylum seekers from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts. According to Javier Salazar, Bexar County,
Texas’ progressive sheriff, that amounted to a kidnapping, and he’s recommending to the D.A. that
charges be brought. According to original reports, the migrants were promised housing and work in major cities
and had no idea they would wind up in a tiny resort where they were unexpected.
Gunfire erupted as
students, friends and family members gathered in a park outside a downtown Richmond, Virginia theater that
had just hosted a high-school graduation. Two persons were killed and five were wounded, one critically.
A 19-year old male who was caught with “multiple weapons” is in custody. Lt. Governor Winsome
Earle-Sears blamed gangs and demanded heavier punishment. “How many more people have to die before we say
you're going to jail. We're going to lock you up and there's not going to be any bail so that we can
have safety in our communities. When does that happen?”
“stand your ground” law is the defense offered by a 58-year old woman who fired through her front
door, fatally wounding a neighbor. Susan Lorincz is charged with manslaughter and other crimes in the killing of
Ajike Owens, a mother of four whose childrens’ behavior was the subject of a long-running, bitter dispute.
Lorincz claims that she fired because Owens was trying “to break down her door.” Protests have
broken out, spurred by race: the shooter is White, and the victim was Black.
6/6/23 In June 2000 Michael Tisius, then 19, shot and killed two guards as he and a companion tried to break a
friend from jail. Tisius was convicted of their murder and jurors agreed that he deserved the death penalty. And
that’s what he got. However, six jurors (incl. two alternates) have since changed their minds, and said so
in affidavits. But a sister of one of Tisius’ victims feels execution is appropriate. So does Governor Mike
Parson. A former sheriff, he’s pledged to carry it through. It’s scheduled for today. Related posts
In recent days three dozen asylum seekers processed by immigration authorities in
Texas presented themselves at a Sacramento diocese. They came to California on two charter flights from New Mexico
that were reportedly arranged and funded by the administration of Florida Governor (and Presidential hopeful) Ron
DeSantis. Calling the assertedly misrepresented transport a “kidnapping” - the immigrants have no ties
to California and their hearings were to take place in other states - California Atty. General Rob Bonta
threatened civil and possibly criminal action.
A 31-year old San Jose, Calif. man with a “violent, delusional past” is in custody after an
inexplicable series of attacks that left three persons dead and five injured. Kevin Parkourana, who was on felony
probation and has a string of convictions and mental-health detentions, stole vehicles, stabbed drivers, and ran
over pedestrians and a man on a scooter. Parkourana was most recently arrested in January for a knife attack but
was not charged. Santa Clara Co. court history
6/5/23 It took less than a day for a civil jury to decide that L.A. County
Sheriff’s Lt. Larry Waldie was not denied promotion because he warned about the unholy influence of
deputy “gangs,” and particularly the “Executioners” at the Compton station. Problem is,
Waldie himself bore the tattoo of another gang, the “Gladiators.” And the numbers didn't
strongly support his contention that a work slowdown supposedly prompted by the “Executioners” had
in fact taken place. Related posts
Nevada-based Polymer80 is paying Los Angeles $5 million to settle a lawsuit that it
sold unserialized parts kits from which guns could be assembled (i.e., “ghost guns”) without running
criminal records checks. “More than seven-hundred” such guns were recovered by LAPD that year. Filed
in 2020, the lawsuit actually predates an August, 2022 Federal rule that defines such kits such as “firearms”. And ATF and San
Diego police just
announced the arrest of 29 persons for illegally assembling, making and possessing eighty-two
“ghost guns”. Related posts
not have a “Red Flag” law. And Governor Bill Lee insists that his proposal, drafted in response to
the March 27 massacre at Nashville’s Covenant Christian School, isn’t one. Still, it’s intended
“to address unstable individuals who suffer from mental health issues but do not qualify for involuntary
commitment to a facility.” Governor Lee characterized NRA’s opposition to the measure as an
endorsement of involuntary commitment, which he feels is far more invasive of privacy. Related posts
According to the L.A. Coroner, Keenan Anderson, 31, who was repeatedly Tasered by LAPD officers during a
January 3rd. encounter, died “hours” later from the “effects of cardiomyopathy [heart disease]
and cocaine use”. Anderson, a D.C. high-school teacher, was visiting family in L.A. when he exhibited odd
and aggressive behavior in a public area. A private autopsy confirmed there was cocaine in his system but blamed
officers’ restraint and Taser use for causing his death. A lawsuit is pending. Related posts
In 1982 Texas man Raul Meza was on parole for a robbery and shooting when he pled guilty to the rape/murder of
an 8-year old girl. He got 30 years and was released in 1993 after serving one-third of his term. Meza was then
“run out” of a string of cities. He’s now back in custody, charged with two murders in the
Austin area (he turned himself in and admitted to one). Meza is also being looked at in ten “cold
cases”. Austin’s City Manager complains that “somebody made a bad decision 41 years ago and let
this guy for whatever reason manipulate the system and justice was not served.” Related posts
6/2/23 NYPD officers get “courtesy cards” from their unions. They hand them out to
friends and family members, who use them to prove their bonafides should they be stopped. According to a Federal
lawsuit filed by officer Mathew Bianchi, ignoring a card and ticketing anyway (it turned out to be the friend of
an NYPD big shot) is what got him transferred from the traffic division to a graveyard shift on patrol.
A 58-year old owner of a South Carolina convenience store is charged with murder after
shooting and killing a 14-year old boy he and his son chased from the store after wrongly suspecting the youth had
shoplifted. During the pursuit, Rick Chow’s son said that the youth had a gun. Chow promptly fired at the
teen’s back, inflicting a fatal wound. A handgun was found next to the youth’s body, but there is no
indication he pointed it at anyone. Chow, who has often called police to the store, had previously shot at thieves
and wounded one. But those episodes were found to be justified. South Carolina has a SYG law. Its laws also let private persons use deadly force to prevent thieves from fleeing in the
Two and one-half years in Federal prison. That’s the sentence handed down to a supervisory physician at a
Colorado medical clinic who falsely secured $250,000 from two COVID-19 relief programs that were intended to help
firms struggling because of the pandemic. Instead, Dr. Francis F. Joseph, 58, spent the proceeds “to pay for
his personal expenses.”
Overcoming objections that Chicago’s needy communities were a better place to spend
the funds, its city council authorized $51 million to help care for and shelter the scores of undocumented
immigrants that continue to arrive, many on buses dispatched by Texas. “The problem here is, in the
frustration, we all want to yell and point fingers at Texas,” said council member Anthony Napolitano, who
favored the appropriation. “That’s not right. We declared ourselves a sanctuary city.”
police have been long beset by accusations of misconduct, misuse of force and bias against minorities. But the
killing of Najee Seabrooks, a mentally disturbed man on March 3, was the last straw for progressively-minded State
Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin. Three weeks later, using a law unique to his state, the AG took control of the
police. But his move doesn’t satisfy a local Black Lives Matter organizer, who would prefer that a truly
independent monitor step in. Related posts
Progressively-minded elected D.A.’s in several Texas counties have made decisions to not pursue election
law violations, abortion cases, and marijuana possession. That greatly displeases the majority “Reds”,
which includes Texas Governor Greg Abbott. He is soon expected to sign a bill that defines those practices as
official misconduct punishable by removal from office.
Drug legalization updates
Texas’ appeal for help in securing its southern border was first answered by Florida, which is sending
100 national guard troops. Three more “Red” states - Virginia, West Virginia and South Carolina - just
announced they’re joining in. Virginia is sending 100 soldiers, to be accompanied by 21 support staff.
According to Gov. Glen Youngkin, they’ll help “reduce the flow of fentanyl, combat human trafficking and
address the humanitarian crisis.” More “Red” states are soon expected to follow.
Washington D.C. is
plagued by armed robbers who are literally children. Days ago, an 11-year old was arrested for three street
robberies. One of his victims remarked that the masked youth seemed to weigh all of ninety pounds. Charges were also
recently levied against a 12-year old for nine “carjackings, robberies and assaults.” A local outreach
worker remarked that older teens are having their young siblings accompany them on the streets. According to D.C.
police a majority of the 43 persons arrested for carjacking in 2023 are juveniles in their mid-teens.
During trial of a civil lawsuit filed by an L.A. Sheriff’s Lieutenant who
claims he was demoted after complaining about the nefarious behavior of a deputy “gang,” Undersheriff
April Tardy testified that her prior account to an oversight commission had been incorrect, and that there was no
work “slowdown” at the Sheriff’s station where that deputy gang was supposedly in control. Her
account, which sharply contradicts the plaintiff’s assertions, backs up testimony by a deputy member of that
gang, who insisted that the behavior of its tattooed members was actually benign.
Faced with officer shortages and difficulties in recruitment, police departments across the U.S. are loosening
hiring standards. Some are offering hiring bonuses. Others, including Chicago and New Orleans, have dropped college
requirements. Physical testing has become more forgiving (Massachusetts eliminated sit-ups). A few (Golden,
Colorado) are experimenting with 4-day, 32-hour workweeks. But not everyone’s on board. Memphis officers fear
that relaxed standards will bring on more unqualified candidates and lead to more episodes such as the beating
death of Tyre Nichols. Related posts
5/31/23 Minnesota, the home of the George Floyd imbroglio, has changed the rules
on peace officer licensing. In the past an officer had to be convicted of a serious crime before the POST board
could strip his authority. And that could only happen for misusing deadly force. Chauvin, for example, remained
licensed until convicted of murder. Now the board will be able to revoke peace officer authority for misusing lesser
forms of force. And no criminal charges against the officer need have been filed.
In 2020 L.A. County Sheriff’s Lt. Larry Waldie sued his own agency, claiming that he was
demoted for objecting to the control that “The Executioners” deputy gang exercised at the Compton
station. Trial has been underway for two weeks. A recent witness, Deputy Jaime Juarez, rolled up a pants leg to
show his gang tattoo. But he said it was “a positive thing” and denied he had led a slowdown. Meanwhile
the defense insists that Waldie was himself a member of a deputy gang, the “Gladiators.”
In 2014 Illinois generally barred the police use of drones (click here for the law). Eight years later came the July 4th. 2022 massacre in Highland Park. A bill
now sits on the Governor’s desk that amends the law to permit the use of drones to monitor special events,
help in search and rescue, and aid victims or identify suspects when responding to dispatched calls for service
here for the bill). Related posts
As Memorial Day came to a close gunfire broke out during a dispute between two groups gathered on a Hollywood,
Florida beach. Nine persons ranging in age from one to sixty-five were wounded, none fatally. One person was
arrested; another is being sought. According to the Gun Violence
Archive, there have been 263 shootings this year where at least four persons were wounded or killed excluding
the shooter, and 23 mass murders where at least four victims died.
Faced with violence that remains far higher than pre-pandemic, cities are readying for
the summer. In Detroit, which is beset by shootings, the Feds will pursue gun crimes and armed robberies. Chicago,
whose mayor has promised to reduce the police role, will deploy State-funded civilian “peacekeepers” in
crime-stricken neighborhoods. Civilians will enforce Baltimore’s youth curfew, taking recalcitrant youngsters
to “engagement centers.” Cleveland, Newark and Philadelphia will use a mix of strategies, increasing
officer presence in troubled areas while encouraging community-based solutions.
Chronic understaffing plagues police departments and sheriffs offices across the U.S. Last year Illinois reported
that sixty percent of its law enforcement agencies were understaffed, and that nearly one in five had shortages
exceeding ten percent. Such dilemmas have led managers to raise the bar when deciding whether and how severely to
punish officers, and to significantly lower it when making hiring decisions. Misbehavior that would normally result
in firing is being overlooked, and lowered entrance requirements and academy standards have allowed poorly-qualified
candidates to join the force. Related posts
A small-city detective who was working a vehicle theft sting with San Diego County deputies is suing after a
bullet from gunfire that deputies directed at a thief struck him in the leg. According to the plaintiff, the
deputies, with whom he couldn't communicate because he was not given the proper radio, fired at the man although
he did not pose an immediate threat. It’s also alleged that the deputies were poorly trained and that one had
a history of improper use of force that was never addressed.
A 20-year old
Arizona man faces four counts of murder and one of attempted murder after confessing that he engaged in a Phoenix-
area killing spree that left four persons dead and one wounded. Iren Byers told Mesa police that he was motivated by
a hatred for drugs, and that his middle-aged victims, allegedly street persons who used fentanyl and other
narcotics, “didn't deserve” help. Officers found the 9mm. pistol that Byers used in his
grandmother's bedroom. Related posts
Casting themselves as “political prisoners,” many indicted Capitol rioters have
raised thousands of dollars - some tens of thousands - from online appeals. Perhaps the most prolific, Nevada man
Nathaniel DeGrave, raked in $120,000 thru the favored GiveSendGo
website. Most pleas for money cite lawyers’ fees and such, but even those using public defenders have raked it
in. Judges have returned the favor by imposing fines; in DeGrave’s case, for $25,000.
Citing her role as “more aggressive, more assaultive, more
purposeful than perhaps others,” a judge imposed the third-longest prison so far - 8 1/2 years - on Jessica
Watkins, who led an Oath Keepers chapter in Ohio and recruited participants for the Capitol assault. Co-defendant
Kenneth Harrelson, a resident of Florida, drew four years. Jurors had acquitted both of seditious conspiracy but
convicted them, among other things, of obstructing Congress. Click here for a dramatic photo.
5/26/23 “Today’s sentences reflect the grave threat the actions of
these defendants posed to our democratic institutions.” That’s how A.G. Merrick Garland characterized
the record-setting 18-year term handed down to Oath Keepers founder and leader Stewart Rhodes, and the stiff twelve
-year sentence given to Florida Oath Keepers leader Kelly Meggs, for their roles in the Capitol assault. Both had
been convicted of seditious conspiracy and other crimes at a jury trial in November.
A report by Chicago’s Inspector General blasts the police department for thumbing its nose at
a 2019 Federal consent decree by continuing to employ scores of police officers who lied during criminal
investigations. But the city’s Police Board states that twenty-one officers have been fired for lying during
the past five years. Before then, some were given leniency, but nonetheless received three-year suspensions. A
city law requiring that officers who lie be fired has been recommended.
An eleven-year old boy who was asked by his mother to call police because of the presence of an intruder
shot and seriously wounded by an Indianola, Mississippi police sergeant who opened fire when the boy stepped
into the home’s living room. And in Mantua, New Jersey, a police officer has been indicted on manslaughter
charges for a 2021 shooting in which he opened fire on the 9-1-1 caller “less than five seconds” after arriving on
It was a horrendous crime - the attempted gunning down of six
L.A.-area high school students. Three gang members were convicted in 1990 and received lengthy terms. In 2017, one
told the parole board that he was the shooter and that one of those convicted, Daniel Saldana, told the truth when
he denied being present. But his words weren’t passed on to the D.A. for six years. When they were, things
moved swiftly. Acting on the D.A.’s motion, a judge declared Saldana innocent. He had served 33 years.
5/25/23 “The traumas we suffered that day were endless.” So said D.C. police officer
Christopher Owens during a sentencing hearing for Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes and Florida chapter leader
Kelly Meggs. Both were convicted of seditious conspiracy over their roles in the Capitol assault. Prosecutors have
asked that Rhodes draw twenty-five years, which would be by far the longest term yet imposed.
“I’m here and
I have a gun.” Those were the words allegedly uttered at the gates of the CIA’s McLean, Virginia
headquarters by Gainsville, Florida man Eric Sandow, 32. He was turned away and police were called. Sandow, who
seems free of prior criminal convictions, was later arrested at the nearby preschool where he had parked his car.
Inside police found an AK-47 type rifle, a pistol, and a large quantity of ammunition. According to officers,
Sandow “exhibited paranoid behavior, irrational verbal behavior, incoherent statements and had an inability
to state a plan or purpose”.
Two former Jackson, Mississippi police officers, both Black, have been indicted for murder in the death
of a disorderly man, also Black, with whom they struggled on New Year’s eve. A third former officer, who is
White, was charged with manslaughter. During the struggle the officers forced Keith Murriel, 41, to the ground,
flipped him onto his stomach and repeatedly stunned him with a Taser. Jackson’s Mayor called their actions
“excessive, disheartening and tragic.” Bodycam
video Related posts