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Seattle cancels police drone program after outcry over privacy ...

Seattle cancels police drone program after outcry over privacy ... | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
SEATTLE - A plan by Seattle police to send aloft miniature robot drones equipped with stealth spy cameras has been grounded, following heated criticism of the project by residents concerned about privacy rights, the mayor ...
Rob Duke's insight:
Hmmmm....cheap drones or expensive choppers....?
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Christopher Bedel's comment, February 19, 2013 2:28 PM
I really see no use for drones in relation to public privacy other than for spying on people to see what they are doing. If they want to use it for a 3-D view of a crime scene after the fact and for evidence purposes, I can understand that. But how much crime would these really prevent? Or how much could they help look for a missing person with a short flight time? It would also be more costly if more than one person has to operate it. With that kind of cost, is the department really saving money? In my opinion, I believe that it is better to have a real body out on the street working the scene. Also, a real body out there patrolling is a bigger deterrent to crime and a bigger help than a drone flying around.
Albert Svensson's comment, February 21, 2013 12:14 AM
I can understand the frustrations of the residents of Seattle and why they would not want these drones flying around their city. But I feel like it is step that needs to be taken to protect the people. Even though the technology may not be perfect and the flight time of only 15 min makes them unrealistic for long police chases but they would give the police and advantage when it comes to mapping crime scenes. I understand that we know have Google earth for situations like this but it would give a updated view of the area. As for privacy I doubt that the police are going to launch these things just to spy on the public. The drones could also be used to get a live feed of visual information if there was a hostage situation.
Rob Duke's comment, February 28, 2013 1:31 AM
One of my old partners works for an optics company that installs drone style optics on fixed wing airplanes to replace expensive choppers that require a pilot and an observer with only a pilot/observer. It may be that we need some experience with widespread use of these vehicles for some time before people get used to the idea of fixed wings versus choppers.
Police Problems and Policy
Examining the possibilities of abuse of power without the constraint of New Public Administration.
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Davis police officers attacked on Picnic Day

Davis police officers attacked on Picnic Day | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Three men were arrested following an attack on Davis police officers who encountered a group of people blocking traffic on a busy roadway during Saturday’s Picnic Day at UC Davis.

The annual campus open house has become known in recent years for violence and drunken mayhem, mainly on the streets of the normally quiet college town.

The latest incident occurred abut 3:30 p.m. Saturday, when three Davis police officers traveling on Russell Boulevard in an unmarked police vehicle encountered a large group of people in the roadway, blocking traffic, according to a Police Department news release.

One officer was in uniform with a visible badge. The other two were in plain clothes, but with badges clearly displayed on their chests and with police weapons visible, the news release said.

Traffic on Russell Boulevard was nearly gridlocked at the time due to Picnic Day activities and several large parties in the area. Because the group presented safety hazards, the officers pulled near the group to take action, according to police.

A hostile group quickly surrounded the vehicle. Several people began yelling threats at the officers in the car, and one person pretended he was pulling a gun on the officers, the news release said.

As the officers got out of the car and began to identify themselves as police, two officers were attacked by several people and beaten on the ground. Police reported that the officers were kicked and punched in the head, and one officer was struck on the side of the head with a bottle.

As they were being assaulted, the officers could see people in the crowd taking video of the attack on their cellphones, according to the news release.

The officers fought back and called for help. Two of the officers were taken to the Sutter Davis Hospital emergency room for treatment. One suffered injuries to his eye and face, and the other was treated for a bleeding head wound caused by a bottle, the news release said.
Rob Duke's insight:
After the 99% riots of 2012, and several officers were fired at UC Davis, and the people's republic of davis (as it is know tongue-in-cheek in the Sacramento area) being no more friendly to officers, it's not surprising that officers are careful not to risk losing their jobs.  That's a poor trade off, however, because mobs don't think rationally.
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Three Pittsburgh officers refuse to testify before police review board

Three Pittsburgh officers refuse to testify before police review board | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
The Citizen Police Review Board has turned to the courts to force three Pittsburgh police officers to testify about an incident involving a suicidal woman who was taken to jail rather than to a hospital for treatment.

The CPRB, which was approved by voters in a May 1997 referendum to provide independent oversight and investigation of citizen complaints about police, subpoenaed the officers after a complaint filed by Rayden Sorock of Lawrenceville.

According to the complaint, Mr. Sorock called police on March 30, 2015, after a female friend experiencing “a psychiatric episode” threatened to hurt herself with a surgical scalpel. The officers who responded — Matthew Gardner, Nicholas Papa and Christopher Rosato — said the woman would be taken to either Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC or to UPMC Mercy, Mr. Sorock said.

Instead, the complaint said, the woman was taken to the Allegheny County Jail, where she was held for threatening the officers. The complaint did not say how the matter was resolved.

In response to Mr. Sorock’s complaint, the CPRB subpoenaed the officers to a Jan. 26 public hearing. Officer Gardner refused to appear. Officers Papa and Rosato appeared but refused to testify.

“The officers have that right,” said Officer Robert Swartzwelder, president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 1. “According to the collective bargaining agreement with the city, they are not required to testify. An officer is free to testify if they choose to, but they cannot be compelled to. They have the right to make their own decision.”

But Beth Pittinger, CPRB executive director since January 1999, said police had refused to cooperate with the board in the past, and the courts have consistently come down on the side of the CPRB.

It has been more than 10 years, she said, since an officer refused.

“Why are they resisting?” Ms. Pittinger said. “Now all of a sudden they’re saying no. The precedent had been established in local and commonwealth courts. The board’s subpoena is real.

“Their attorney is claiming that the police contract with the city prohibits the city from requiring them to testify before the board. And that’s fine.

“We’re not asking the city to require them. The board is doing it, and like any subpoena, it’s making somebody do something they wouldn’t voluntarily choose to do. But the board needs to get the facts.”

In 2003, Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Gallo ruled that “it is undisputed that the CPRB has the authority to subpoena officers for the purpose of providing testimony at public hearings.”

Ms. Pittinger said the current case, which is set for a May 15 court hearing, is one of two in which officers are not complying. A complaint on the other one, she said, would be filed in court in the coming days.

Officer Swartzwelder said police are also subject to investigations by the Office of Municipal Investigations and the Office of Professional Standards, created by former police Chief Cameron McLay.

“Three different bodies,” he said, “so somebody can get angry and complain about police and then shop and get the result that they’re seeking. How many times do [officers] have to give their statement?”

The argument that the CPRB is not part of the city government is refuted, he said, because the board gets its budget from the city. Representatives of the city and the police bureau could not be reached for comment Monday night.
Rob Duke's insight:
They still do witch hunts in some jurisdictions.  3 different boards that have a chance to discipline officers is crazy.

Every state needs a Peace Officer Bill of Rights with laws that protect officers with a time limit on investigations, and that specify that attorneys and peace officers are the only ones allowed to complete investigations.
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Judge hogties free speech lawsuit over Ferguson cops-as-pigs painting

Judge hogties free speech lawsuit over Ferguson cops-as-pigs painting | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A federal judge ruled against a lawsuit seeking redemption for the removal of a US Capitol painting depicting cops as violent pigs, stating the artist’s free speech rights were not violated when the painting was removed after protests by Republicans.
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Valley residents to weigh in on releasing LAPD body camera videos of police shootings

Valley residents to weigh in on releasing LAPD body camera videos of police shootings | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
If a Los Angeles police officer shoots at someone, would you want that video released to the public?That is the question being asked by the Los Angeles Police Commission at a community meeting in Reseda on Thursday.The meeting will begin
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Is police misconduct treated differently in the cellphone video age?

Is police misconduct treated differently in the cellphone video age? | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Are police departments reacting differently now when confronted with video evidence showing the misconduct of officers?
It depends on who you ask.
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Safe cams help police, local businesses solve crime

Safe cams help police, local businesses solve crime | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
La Crosse police officer Brooke Pataska says in the one year they've been installed, the cameras have made her job a little easier.
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Berkeley police treasure found in Texas 'mystery box'

Berkeley police treasure found in Texas 'mystery box' | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A priceless artifact from Berkeley police history, which turned up in a $5 box of books at an estate sale in Texas, will be on public display for the first time ever Sunday at the Berkeley Historical Society.

Read more about the new Vollmer exhibit and biography. Scroll to the bottom of this story for exhibit details.
The artifact is the long lost 14-karat gold, diamond-studded badge of Berkeley’s first police chief, August Vollmer. It was so far gone, in fact, even the department historian was unaware of its existence as a BPD relic. Vollmer has been called “the father of modern policing,” which is the title of a comprehensive new book about him just published this year. The author of that book will speak Sunday, and the badge will be shown alongside Vollmer’s revolver as part of a program at the Berkeley Historical Society museum celebrating the innovative chief’s history.

The rediscovery of the badge blindsided a couple from a suburb of Austin, Texas, in August 2015. The story has been somewhat under wraps ever since, until Susan Lyons and her husband, Mark — speaking by phone from Texas — shared that story with Berkeleyside. The couple has worked together, as a side job, for more than a decade selling books on Amazon to help put their four children through college. One day, at an estate sale, they picked up about 200 boxes of high-quality books that appeared to have been hastily slapped together. When they later went through those boxes, they were surprised to come across an old leather case.

“Mark’s going through boxes, and he comes up to me and he goes, ‘Do you think this is worth something?'” recalled Susan. “Me being a woman, I know a diamond when I see it. When he handed it to me and I saw Vollmer’s name on it, we both looked at each other and said: ‘This needs to go home.'”
Rob Duke's insight:
Very nice.  The last real time that law enforcement went through planned change.  We need to analyze ourselves and make periodic needed change.  Vollmer, and his protege, O. W. Wilson, taught us that, but it is a lesson we're prone to forget.
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Video Shows Aggressive Confrontation Between American Airlines Staff and Passengers

Video Shows Aggressive Confrontation Between American Airlines Staff and Passengers | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Video emerged on Friday showing the disturbing aftermath of a confrontation between American Airlines flight staff and at least three passengers. The video, attached at the end of this story, shows a deeply distraught female passenger crying near the airplane cabin as two other passengers confront airline staff. One male passenger tells a male crew member that “you do that to me, and I’ll knock you flat.” The crew member squares off aggressively with the passenger, urging him to “bring it,” and saying “you don’t know what the story is.”
The story, according to eyewitness reports gathered by a local Fox affiliate, involved a passenger with two small children who refused a request to check her stroller. In response, a flight attendant—apparently the man shown in the video—called security, then “wrestled” the stroller away from the passenger. Eyewitnesses claim that the passenger was hit in the head, and that her children were in harm’s way.
Rob Duke's insight:
Stewards act as the representatives of the Captains who are virtual dictators of ships and planes under international law.  They have also adopted very formal and polite manners, but the bottom line is do what you're told for the good of the order and the safety of all other passengers--you have a duty to do so.

It seems that we've become so enamored with freedom, that we have forgotten responsibility.  The same forces that have eroded police authority are at work in other areas of our lives (i.e., airline stewards, teachers, etc.).
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Dallas police chief pins blame for 911 staffing issues on his department | Dallas City Hall | Dallas News

Dallas police chief pins blame for 911 staffing issues on his department | Dallas City Hall | Dallas News | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Interim Dallas Police Chief David Pughes says the blame for under-staffing in the city's troubled 911 call center lies with hi
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WATCH: Fresno PD Chief Shocks Reporters When He Explains Why Justice System Is Broken

WATCH: Fresno PD Chief Shocks Reporters When He Explains Why Justice System Is Broken | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Fresno PD Chief Jerry Dyer went on the local news station and laid out exactly what is wrong with our justice system
Rob Duke's insight:
That's great, but the prisoner dump was not initially cause by the legislature, but by the 3-judge Federal panel.
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Berkeley police get flak for hands-off approach to protest mayhem

Berkeley police get flak for hands-off approach to protest mayhem | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
As a chaotic series of bloody brawls erupted in Berkeley over the weekend at a far-right rally in support of President Trump, hundreds of police officers were stationed nearby but didn’t immediately jump into the melee.
The mostly hands-off approach marked the latest strategy by a police force dealing with violent demonstrations in a famously liberal city that has become ground zero for confrontations between supporters of Trump, including white supremacists, and opponents who want to shut them down.
But the response — one of the first big tests for Berkeley’s new police chief and mayor — attracted criticism from some experts in police tactics.
“Doing nothing empowers the miscreants,” said Charles “Sid” Heal, a retired commander of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and the president of the California Association of Tactical Officers. “The first and fundamental reason government exists is for protection. When government fails, the people take the matter in their own hands.”
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Two Detroit cops wounded by shotgun blast, one critical

Two Detroit cops wounded by shotgun blast, one critical | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A two-year veteran was shot in the face Sunday, the second was wounded in the arm, police said
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U.S. Supreme Court ruling on police provocation could impact Olango lawsuit

U.S. Supreme Court ruling on police provocation could impact Olango lawsuit | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it

Alfred Olango, a 38-year-old Ugandan refugee, was unarmed when he was shot in a minutes-long confrontation with Officer Richard Gonsalves on Sept. 27. Olango had been acting strangely that morning, telling his sister he hadn’t slept and was paranoid.

His sister called 911 three times that morning, asking for help for her brother who was having a mental breakdown.

Olango was found wandering in and out of traffic, and when Gonsalves pulled up in his patrol car, Olango was pacing in the parking lot of the Broadway Village shopping center in El Cajon.

Surveillance and cellphone video show the two facing off. The officer said he commanded a visibly agitated Olango to take his hands out of his pockets, but he wouldn’t comply.

Olango suddenly pulled an item out of his pocket and pointed it at the officer, taking what police have described as a two-handed shooting stance, and the officer fired. The item turned out to be a vaping device with a barrel that resembled a gun, police said.


Dumanis rules El Cajon police shooting of Alfred Olango justified
The District Attorney’s Office, which reviews all officer-involved shootings, found the use of deadly force was justified because the officer reasonably feared for his life.

The lawsuit, filed in January, accuses Gonsalves of “aggressively” confronting and cornering Olango rather than waiting for a psychiatric team to arrive for help. The suit also alleges Gonsalves had a “cowboy attitude” and his demeanor provoked Olango’s reaction, resulting in the shooting.

In their motion to dismiss, lawyers for El Cajon argue that the lawsuit does not allege any unconstitutional conduct that occurred before the shooting.

“Not waiting for a P.E.R.T team before confronting a mentally unstable Olango does not constitute a Fourth Amendment violation. Nor did it violate the Fourth Amendment to confront, chase or corner Olango. At most, these might constitute negligent tactics and conduct,” the lawyers from the firm Haley & Dean argue.

Rob Duke's insight:
See the photo to the right.  It's difficult to argue that the officers weren't justified.  They were called to the scene and used good judgement and reasonableness to verify if the man needed help (and good officer safety--hands kill, thus we always demand to see the hands.  This is like in basketball where you always watch the opponents hips because that tells you where they will move next).  It is unreasonable to call PERT before verifying that the man needs them.  What if his sister is over-reacting?  What if someone reported him maliciously?  Not only that, but PERT doesn't show up in an hour--my experience with the strained mental health system is that response will take several hours (at best).
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Why You Must Never Show Your Middle Finger to a Man With a Big Truck - CrasHHunters.com

Why You Must Never Show Your Middle Finger to a Man With a Big Truck - CrasHHunters.com | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Why You Must Never Show Your Middle Finger to a Man With a Big Truck This is not because every driver is a bad guy or has hot blood in his veins
Rob Duke's insight:
Yup, and when the cops get there, the guy in the silver car is going to lie.  It gets old and cops get cynical.
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California bill would make it harder to punish police officers who have been accused of lying

California bill would make it harder to punish police officers who have been accused of lying | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A bill would make it harder for police departments to discipline officers for making false statements. It's backed by the L.A. police union.
Rob Duke's insight:
This is a good move.  From what I've seen the only ones targeted with Brady are: a. those who are caught in a significant, material (they lied and it puts someone in jail), and public (can't be denied or covered up); and/or, b. those who are unpopular with command.
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Will Jeff Sessions Police the Police?

Will Jeff Sessions Police the Police? | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Sessions has expressed disdain not only for consent decrees but for the very idea that police departments can be systemically flawed.
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DA: California police justified in shooting caught on video

DA: California police justified in shooting caught on video | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A California police officer acted lawfully when he shot and killed a legally blind man with schizophrenia during an encounter at a gas station in 2015, prosecutors said Tuesday.A report made public Tuesday by the Sa
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Man injured in possible ‘suicide by cop’ attempt in North Hills

Man injured in possible ‘suicide by cop’ attempt in North Hills | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A man was in stable condition Sunday following an officer-involved shooting after he brandished what turned out to be a replica gun in North Hills the day before, Los Angeles police said.At about 6:15 a.m. Saturday, LAPD officers from Mission a
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Major new biography, exhibit on August Vollmer, Berkeley's first police chief

Major new biography, exhibit on August Vollmer, Berkeley's first police chief | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
In the first part of the 20th century, Berkeley’s first police chief was a household name. When Americans thought about the giants of crimefighting, August Vollmer was in the pantheon that included FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover and Wyatt Earp, the deputy marshal who participated in the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.

His renown was understandable. Vollmer started as town marshal in 1905 and then took over the new Berkeley Police Department in 1909. He was an innovator and ushered in many improvements that are commonplace today, earning him the nickname of the “father of American policing.”

Vollmer was the first to put an entire police force on bicycles. He improved the way police got information about crime, first by installing flashing red recall lights scattered around Berkeley that told officers to return to headquarters, then by using Morse Code to deliver to them the address where a crime had been committed. Vollmer was the first to have his force use cars, earning officers the nickname “limousine police.”  Vollmer hired the country’s first female police officer in 1917 and its first African-American officer in 1918. He insisted on collecting physical evidence from crime scenes and using that evidence — rather than hunches — to find criminals. His protégés invented the lie detector and the Berkeley Police Department was among the first to use it. Vollmer also required that all Berkeley police officers have a college degree.

Vollmer also believed in the humanity of criminals and that they could be redeemed, rejecting the use of brute force and intense interrogations such as the third degree, a common practice of torture in that time.



Today, Vollmer’s name is not widely recognized, even among Berkeley residents. Yes, there is Vollmer Peak, in Tilden Park, but few know the details about his life and accomplishments.


Willard M. Oliver, the author of a new biography about Berkeley’s first police chief, August Vollmer, stands in front of an old lie detector that was developed by Vollmer’s proteges and used by the police department. Photo: Frances Dinkelspiel
Willard M. Oliver, a professor of criminal justice at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas, hopes to change that. And his chances are good, as his new 780-page book, August Vollmer: The Father of American Policing — the first comprehensive biography on the police chief — has just been published. Oliver and the Berkeley Historical Society have also worked together to create a major new exhibit on Vollmer. The show opens Sunday at 3 p.m. at 1931 Center St. Oliver will deliver a talk with photos before that, at 2 p.m. at Old City Hall, 2134 Martin Luther King Jr. Way.

Read about the rediscovery of Vollmer’s long-lost gold-and-diamond badge, found in Texas by a pair of booksellers
“The name faded with time,” said Steve Finacom, a historian who helped with the Vollmer exhibit now on display. “His life and his philosophy are very relevant today. For example, how would Vollmer have reacted to the extremist gathering in the park?” he said, pointing to Civic Center Park, across the street from the Historical Society and the site of recent protests.
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New York's mayor blasts Sessions' 'soft on crime' statement

New York's mayor blasts Sessions' 'soft on crime' statement | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Mayor Bill de Blasio and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions engaged in a war of words on Friday over a Department of Justice statement accusing the city of being "soft on crime."

The department said New York "continues to see gang murder after gang murder, the predictable consequence of the city's 'soft on crime' stance."

The statement was part of an ongoing dispute between Republican President Donald Trump and cities including New York over immigration policy, with the Trump administration threatening to crack down on so-called sanctuary cities that refuse to comply with federal immigration authorities.

The Democratic mayor called the "soft on crime" characterization "absolutely outrageous."

"Attorney General Sessions is supposed to be the leading law enforcement official in America," de Blasio said. "Why would he insult the men and women who do this work every day, who put their lives on the line and who have achieved so much?"

Police Commissioner James O'Neill, who appeared with de Blasio at police headquarters, said the "soft on crime" statement made his blood boil.

"To say we're soft on crime is absolutely ludicrous," O'Neill said.

He said his police department, by far the nation's largest, locked up more than 1,000 people in 100 gang takedowns last year.
Rob Duke's insight:
Ask the cops of NYPD...de Blasio is not well-liked and they will tell a different story on crime fighting than he has told here.
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Sheriff, police chiefs denounce NTSB report on fatal bicycle crash

Sheriff, police chiefs denounce NTSB report on fatal bicycle crash | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
On Thursday, Kalamazoo County Sheriff Fuller issued a joint statement with Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety Chief Jeff Hadley and Kalamazoo Township Police Chief Tim Bourgeois responding to the report.
Rob Duke's insight:
The risk-reward factor should be considered before bringing in outside investigators who: a. don't understand the actual practitioner roles, duties, and limitations; b. have their own political agenda.

Replacing one biased investigation for another isn't much in terms of progress.
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Updates: 2 Police Officers Shot In Downtown Seattle

Updates: 2 Police Officers Shot In Downtown Seattle | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
UPDATE 4:15 PM (PT): The second suspect, initially described as having “significant injuries,” has since died, according to multiple reports.

UPDATE 3:51 PM (PT):  All suspects are in custody, according to Seattle Police. The third suspect initially believed to be a part of the incident has been cleared of any involvement.

Condition of the male officer, 30, has been upgraded from “critical” to “serious.”

UPDATE 3:32 PM (PT):A female officer, 42, is in satisfactory condition at Harborview Medical Center.

A male officer, 30, is in critical condition and his injuries are considered life-threatening.
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How Gen Z Will Affect Community Activism | icma.org

How Gen Z Will Affect Community Activism | icma.org | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
The past few months have seen an interesting change in events across the country: more people are taking an active role in organizing community initiatives to spark change. We’ve seen riots and peaceful protests, call parties and petition - Americans are throwing themselves into democracy.
 
But how do the younger generations feel about this movement? After all, as the future leaders of this country, their participation in political and grassroots movements is perhaps even more telling than the participation of Gen X-ers and Boomers.
 
Who is Gen Z?
 
Over the past five years, every industry has tried to crack the Millennials conundrum. Brands have spent huge budgets conducting studies to figure out what Millennials like, what makes them tick, and what they’ll do tomorrow. And now just as people “think” they’ve got Millennials figured out, there’s a new generation demanding attention.
 
Gen Z-ers came of age switching seamlessly between several different screens; if Millennials are the Facebook generation, Gen Z is the Snapchat generation. Their ease and comfortability with social platforms has enable them to share their voices and creativity not just with their own circles, but with audiences across the globe. But Gen Z is so much more than just digitally savvy - although they are too often relegated to this status. In fact, unlike their slightly older counterparts, Gen Z is highly interested in developing offline relationships and connecting
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Police taser a knife wielding man in 'Hackney' London

Shocking moment Met Police taser a knife-wielding man in Hackney.
Rob Duke's insight:
This is beyond stupid and wasteful.  I get that we need to de-escalate, but this guy is occupying a dozen cops.
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Cops, deputies are illegal gun merchants? ATF fed fears - MyNewsLA.com

Cops, deputies are illegal gun merchants? ATF fed fears - MyNewsLA.com | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
The head of the ATF’s office in Los Angeles has sent a memo to Southern California police chiefs and sheriffs saying the agency has found law enforcement officers buying and reselling guns in what could be a violation of federal firearms laws, it was reported Thursday.

The memo from Eric Harden, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearm’s Los Angeles Field Division special agent in charge, describes the finding as an “emerging problem” and expresses concern about “the growing trend of law enforcement officials engaging in the business of unlicensed firearms dealing,” the Los Angeles Times reported.

He did not say how many officers the agency has found purchasing and reselling weapons, but the memo dated March 31 says some officers had bought more than 100 firearms, and some of the guns have been recovered at crime scenes, The Times reported.

But Harden wrote that the goal is “to educate, not investigate, to ensure law enforcement officials comply with federal law in order to avoid unnecessary public embarrassment to themselves and your department/agency.”

His memo focuses on the purchase and resale of “off roster” firearms. Those are guns that are not on an approved list of weapons that can be sold to the public.

The California law establishing the roster has an exemption that allows sworn peace officers to purchase such weapons, and an additional one that allows officers to resell the guns under certain conditions. But if officers are buying and reselling weapons for profit as a business, they need a federal firearms license. The lack of a license is the conduct that ATF has uncovered and is the subject of the memo.
Rob Duke's insight:
I kept rough track and sold my backup weapon (I carried a S&W 4506 .45 duty weapon and the very similar 4516, as my backup--the magazines from the 4506 fit in the 4516) at 10,000 rounds fired (every couple years).  While these guns should go for longer, I had heard of firing pin malfunction at more than 10k rounds, thus I cycled my guns.  I took a hit on depreciation, but then again, I used my guns so I considered them tools.

What is going on here sounds like something else....
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