Five before Midnight

This site is dedicated to the continuous oversight of the Riverside(CA)Police Department, which was formerly overseen by the state attorney general. This blog will hopefully play that role being free of City Hall's micromanagement.
"The horror of that moment," the King went on, "I shall never, never forget." "You will though," the Queen said, "if you don't make a memorandum of it." --Lewis Carroll


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Location: RiverCity, Inland Empire

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Election 2008: Now in the history books

In a landslide victory, Barack Obama became the first Black president in United States history. As night fell, many local and state elections remained undecided.

"And what I see upon reviewing the paper work is that there seems to be some confusion about whether or not this commission is a review commission or an investigative commission. And as far as I'm concerned, the two are not interchangeable and if you have an officer-involved shooting that you're going to deal with five months after, the best you can do is review it."

----Community Police Review Commission member, Jim Ward at a meeting on Nov. 26, 2001

Nearly seven years later...

This was posted at Belo blog:

The Community Police Review Commission will receive a briefing from the Riverside Police Department regarding its investigation into the fatal incident involving Marlon Oliver Acevedo. Capt. Mark Boyer is scheduled to deliver the briefing.

It will take place on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. at Riverside City Hall, 3900 Main Street. The meeting has been scheduled for the large conference room on the fifth floor.

The commission will listen to the report from the police department and then it will continue to have its hands tied by the city manager's and city attorney's offices who have forbade the CPRC from doing its own investigation in an effective and timely manner. If they were even to try to do so, the city attorney's office would take away their allowance and send them back to their rooms.

Also at its meeting tomorrow, the CPRC will continue its work on two other fatal officer-involved shootings, that of Douglas Steven Cloud and Joseph Darnell Hill which it has been given permission by the city and police department to investigate. Those two shootings happened over two years ago but haven't finished their process with the CPRC.

More conversation on the Acevedo incustody death is continuing here as it has been since the Oct. 31 incident.


That is mest up because the police is just killing people now.The cops are mean and that guy that they killed is my uncle.Plus the cops are here to protect us not to kill us.The cops beat my uncle till he died in front of his mom,and my aunt lisa.Now everybody is sad we had a car wash and people didn't care about the danations. and for the people who did donate thank you so much you helped out our family a lot.Some of his friends cried a lot I felt sad.The cops tazered him not a gun shot.I wonder what the cops are doing right now or I wonder how they feel killing my uncle Mike Acevedo.His sons Sunny Nicky don't know what it feels to kill someone frome our family but when they get older they will know how it will feel.Cops I hope your happy because I'm not and I know I don't want to be a stupid cop because what they did to my uncle that is so mest up I hate the cops now.Cops just want to tell you your so freaken mean to my uncle Mike Acevedo Ok.Rest in peace Mike I miss you.It will be pleasure if you didn't die Mike because I miss you a lot.Cops it would have been better to take him to jail but instead you killed him.

I know Mike and Liz. I think its bull that RPD killed him. He was unconsious and they still continued to taser him. Its not the first time in the past 2 months that a homeboy of mine was killed by RPD. Its getting old, I think they are running out of things to do so they are coming and killing people for bs reasons.

Although the police department has yet to release any further details about Acevedo's death including the events leading to it and the level of force used by the police officers on Acevedo, there's quite a bit of mention in several comments in this discussion that he had allegedly been tased at least once by officers at some point. It's not yet clear if that's the case and if so, how many times Acevedo was tased. Other allegations include that he was hogtied, but the department hasn't released any information on whether that was the case.

On Wednesday, this article was published and provides a little history of what's been going on with the commission and City Hall.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

The commission previously requested more timely briefings from the Police Department after a man died after being handcuffed. The police did not provide the typical briefing, and City Attorney Greg Priamos told commissioners they would violate the City Charter if they investigated because the case did not involve officer conduct but Priamos would not explain why.

The commission voted to begin a preliminary investigation to determine whether the death was related to officer conduct. The coroner's office ruled that Martin Gasbar Pablo died from natural causes.

That created a rift between the city and the commission that led to a city directive to withhold money from the commission for investigations until law enforcement investigations are complete.

That directive has meant the commission has not begun investigations into two fatal officer-involved shootings that occurred last month.

Press Enterprise
Columnist Dan Bernstein takes on the brouhaha over Greyhound. This is the action taken by the city government to kick Greyhound out of Riverside and to justify it by calling all 80,000 of its passengers, criminals and parolees while ignoring the fact that the vast majority of them are law-abiding families, seniors and/or disabled individuals. How these individuals became equated with being an undesirable element is difficult to understand in most conversations held in other cities, but unfortunately not nearly so difficult to understand in Riverside's political power circles. Still, it's embarrassing to explain why Riverside's cut itself out of encouraging alternative transportation because even Orange County uses Greyhound as part of several major transit hubs, which after all are part and parcel of any All-American or cosmopolitan city.

And when you have to explain how two city councilmen justified their votes to push Greyhound out by joking how they would personally transport bus riders to the closest Greyhound Bus terminal in San Bernardino, the explanations get harder to come by with a straight face.

Bernstein does a good job summing it all up.


Item de News: The Greyhound terminal in downtown Riverside didn't close after all.

The city stayed this execution for three months so the bus line can continue serving customers during the holiday season.

Once the holiday season is over, Greyhound customers will no longer need bus service because they will all receive 2009 hybrids for Christmas and the recession will be over.

But just in case that doesn't happen, the city and Greyhound should use these three months to settle their stupid, silly argument about security -- get some security in there! -- so local bus riders can have the service they need. Enough posturing and huff-puffing by Greyhound and smug City Council members, who are supposed to help their neediest constituents, not make life tougher for them.

But how? How about this:

"Clean the place (the terminal) up, put in lighting, have some terms and conditions (that Greyhound must obey). ... Downtown crime is committed by downtown people. The notion of someone jumping off a Greyhound on the way to see grandma and selling a dime bag is not happening."

Who said that? Russ Leach, the chief of police. In this space. Last July.

Leach also said the RPD could open a sub-station (and we're not talkin' hoagies) right next to the Hound terminal. How's that for Greyhound security? Woof!

What's interesting is that Leach had made these same comments in other public places and he's right if this is what he said. The crime that's taking place has nothing to do with Greyhound passengers, yet the city council members have used criminal statistics on calls for service including those made by Greyhound employees (who spend more ours at the downtown terminal than say, Riverside Transit Agency employees in a given day or night) to paint all of Greyhound's passengers as hardened criminals cycling in and outside of jail and prison. It's insulting to these passengers including those who live in this city to be treated as cast-offs simply because they can't travel by car, train (which is limited to commuter lines) or private airplanes from one city to the next.

The Riverside City Council did meet for a little while in the afternoon to get some business done before Election Night.

The director of Riverside's art museum is leaving his position for another one.

A popular downtown Riverside restaurant closes its doors, a casualty of the ongoing recession which has hit downtown and other city restaurants pretty hard in the sales area. Less sales revenue has to compete with higher rents. In this case, a restaurant is going out of business. It probably won't be the last one.

Incumbents Mary Figueroa and Mark Takano are leading the pack in the Riverside Community College District Board of Trustees race.

A Riverside County Sheriff's Department captain and his wife have been charged with child abuse.

The Press Enterprise Editorial Board has this to say to Riverside County District Attorney Rod Pacheco: Share the wealth of the Regency tower.


With the drop in property tax revenue caused by the drastic decline in home prices over the past two years, the county urgently needs to find budget savings. Supervisors last week approved a hiring freeze and other cost-saving measures. Deliberately keeping county office space vacant under these circumstances -- while leasing space elsewhere -- would be unconscionable.

Until the Inland region's economy recovers -- a change that could be years away -- county departments will have to work with smaller budgets, fewer employees and deferred goals. There is no reason for the DA's office to be exempt from shared sacrifice.

Even as this nation elected a president, there are also other local elections to follow.

The election to fill three city council seats in Colton from among eight candidates is not going smoothly.

Temecula which has had a turbulent campaign season is counting its votes cast in its city council elections as well.

But in Moreno Valley, two incumbents could be sent packing but the results aren't final yet.

Will Corona's city council vote to expand its redevelopment zone downtown?

A woman protesting against proposition 8 in Beaumont put a councilman there under citizen's arrest after she alleged he pushed her. This incident is going to be reviewed by the Riverside County District Attorney's office.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

Berg said that he was on his way Monday to support a group of proponents of Prop. 8 when protesters against the measure were blocking a crosswalk. One woman began shoving a sign in his face and he pushed the sign out of the way, he said.

Berg said he told the group he was a city councilman and told a woman, "You dykes get out of my face. I don't agree with your queer views." Berg denied that he assaulted anyone and was unsure whether he used other slurs. He said that was the language gay protesters used to refer to themselves.

Asked Tuesday whether he used a slur to refer to homosexuals, Berg said he was not sure, but he might have because "that's what they are."

"It's not homophobia," he said. "They are queer. I believe it is an immoral lifestyle. They do not want tolerance, they want acceptance. I am not going to accept their lifestyle."

While many people are voting, one councilman in Murrieta is going on trial. He's also running for another term at the same time.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

Enochs, 59, was arrested in January 2006 after a district attorney's investigation. He is accused of trying to lower the value of his home to save up to $40,000 in a divorce settlement. Prosecutors contend Enochs threatened to break the legs of a contractor if he didn't create a series of contracts to defraud Enochs' wife.

He is also accused of forging a Murrieta police officer's signature on a boating fix-it ticket.

Enochs pleaded not guilty to the charges in 2006 and has maintained he did nothing wrong, calling the accusations a personal dispute and untrue. If convicted, he could face up to eight years in state prison.

The councilman previously opted to forgo a preliminary hearing to present evidence about the case, and his attorney, Virginia Blumenthal, said a plea deal was not considered.

Enochs has served on the Murrieta City Council since 1995 and recently said he was "confident he would be re-elected" and would be "vindicated." He is running against five other candidates for two open seats.

A new Redlands Police Department officer is involved in many community organizations.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

"I'm giving back to them in a way that's totally different from my job," said Jaquish, a member of the Redlands force since September 2007.

Jaquish was honored in September as one of "30 Under 30" Latino/Native Americans in the 62nd Assembly District. Assemblywoman Wilmer Amina Carter, D-Rialto, started the program two years ago.

The 30 honorees were selected by a six-member committee representing the cities of Fontana, Colton, San Bernardino, Rialto, Bloomington and Muscoy, which comprise the 62nd Assembly District.

Carter said she is impressed with Jaquish's dedication to the citizens of Redlands and her need to help others less fortunate.

Jaquish has been recognized as "30 Under 30" Latino/Native Americans in the 62nd Assembly District.

"I know how much training, commitment and discipline it takes to become a police officer," Carter said. "She used her job to launch her community service."

The San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors is scrutinizing the staffing budget requests of its newest member to make sure that they aren't higher than anyone else's.

Meet the women in the life of former Orange County Sheriff Mike Carona. That phase of the prosecution's case in his federal corruption trial is taking place now.

(excerpt, Los Angeles Times)

For years, Lisa Jaramillo testified that she and her husband took vacations with the Caronas and shared dinners, birthdays and holidays. But Carona's attraction to Hoffman, an attorney, created an awkward dynamic, Jaramillo testified.

She testified that she and her husband were drawn into a double life, going out with the Caronas one night and then with Carona and Hoffman the next. Jaramillo said she told Carona and Hoffman that she disapproved of the affair, but he told her not to worry because he would never leave his wife for another woman. Separately, she testified, Hoffman apologized but said she loved Carona.

Jaramillo testified that Carona also had an affair with her sister, Erika Hill, who worked for Hoffman's law firm as well as on Carona's campaign for sheriff. U.S. District Judge Andrew J. Guilford later told jurors to disregard the testimony about the relationship with Hill but allowed a statement that Lisa Jaramillo recalled Carona making to Hill in the hallway outside of campaign headquarters during the campaign of 1998.

"Sweetheart, if anyone goes to jail, it's going to be me, not you," Carona said, according to the testimony. The exchange, she said, referred to illegal contributions that were being laundered into Carona's first campaign.

Perhaps the most bizarre testimony came as Senior Assistant U.S. Atty. Kenneth Julian tried to establish that a close friendship eventually developed between Lisa Jaramillo and Carona. During questioning, she confirmed that Carona had twice given her birthday cards signed by "The Sheriff, Mrs. Sheriff and The Little Sheriff." The latter, she explained, was a reference to the sheriff's genitals.

Ever since a man alleged he was sodomized by several New York City Police Department officers, that agency denied those allegations and kept the officers out in the field. Now, four officers were placed on restricted duty after a transit officer began to talk to prosecutors.

(excerpt, Newsday)

Police had said two civilian witnesses told Internal Affairs investigators they did not see anyone violate Mineo.

In recent days, however, a fifth officer, who works in transit and is considered a witness in the case, has moved toward entering into a cooperation agreement with the Brooklyn attorney's office as it continues presenting evidence to an investigative grand jury.

Law enforcement sources briefed on the grand jury investigation say that officer, if he cooperates, will implicate the four others in at least a physical assault. The sources say that development prompted the NYPD to take action against the four.

According to the transit officer's attorney, his client has been cooperating with the grand jury process.

(excerpt, New York Daily News)

"I fully expect the officers to be indicted," Stephen Jackson, one of Mineo's lawyers, said. He said theBrooklyn district attorney's office was "taking this case very seriously."

At the same time, the lawyer for a fifth officer, anNYPD transit cop, spent two hours with the DA's staff giving his version of what happened to Mineo.

The transit officer, expected to testify before a grand jury as early as Thursday, appeared to break ranks with his colleagues.

The transit cop is believed to be the only witness who supports Mineo's accusation that he was violated during what started as a minor arrest for smoking marijuana, sources said.

The transit officer's lawyer, Paul Martin, refused to comment on details of the assault,other than to note his client did not commit a crime.

"I met with the district attorney's office," Martin said outside the prosecutor's office.

Martin said he and his client were "confident he will be exonerated."

The ground breaking for the Columbia Street grade separation overpass will take place Thursday, Nov. 6 at 3 p.m. at Iowa and Dodson Way.

The Group will be meeting Thursday, Nov. 6 from 7-8:30am at the Coffee Depot downtown Riverside. The guest speaker will be Riverside Police Department Asst. Chief John DeLaRosa who will present on the department's staffing and budget levels. It should be very interesting.

NaNoWriMo: 6,517 out of 50,000 words and 26 days to go.

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