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

Sunday, April 19, 2009

A heat wave hits Riverside and more harassment on Craiglist!

Record heat in the Inland Empire

Riverside City Council is getting together and holding one of its weekly meetings. The discussion calendars have been a bit more hefty lately with "receive and file" reports, not unusual during election season. There will be no afternoon session involving the Redevelopment Agency so that business will have to wait another week. Attending the meetings is free but alas, no refreshment booths yet.

This time one of the action items involves the police department trying to get another grant from the U.S. Justice Department for the police department. The city is applying for the federal grant to accommodate reductions in the state grants which were used to finance a detective and evidence technician position. With less monies being allotted by the California Department of Justice's coffers, this city like other entities is turning to the federal agencies including stimulus money.

Also meeting this week is the Community Police Review Commission, which if you've following what's been going has been subjected to some post-Measure II micromanagement from factions at City Hall and the direct (and indirect) employees at their disposal. Its next meeting is Wednesday, April 22 at 5:30 pm. at City Hall, in whatever conference room they can cram it in. It's more of a production than a meeting these days and you need a score card to keep up with the players and who's playing who in a particular week. It's amazing that there's actually a meeting taking place at all given that the two commissioners with the worst attendance records during the past year or so are now chair and vice-chair of the commission. But apparently, the meeting as of 48 hours before hasn't been canceled...yet. Still, with two days left until it convenes, close attention will be paid to see if the commission actually does meet.

The CPRC chair and vice chair said that the last meeting was canceled because they didn't have any business even though at least four complaints under review were allegedly held over and there's one case on the afternoon meeting agenda stemming back to 2006 which is the administrative review of the fatal officer-involved shooting of Douglas Steven Cloud.

The CPRC office said that it wasn't routine to hold meetings during the second Wednesday in the month but was only done when the complaint caseload became heavy several years ago. But this is the following records taken through accessing minute orders on this page, including case review, special and/or training meetings. As you can see, meetings have been held on the second Wednesday of the month at least 2/3-3/4 of the meetings held that year except for 2006, which was a year of tremendous upheaval for the CPRC as it was the first wave of micromanagement hitting the CPRC courtesy of City Manager Brad Hudson and Asst. City Manager Tom DeSantis.

2001: 10/12 months had meetings the second Wednesday.

2002: 10/12

2003: 9/12 (though several other months had three case review meetings total)

2004: 11/12

2005: 10/12

2006: 6/12

2007: 8/12 (two dark months)

2008: 12/12

This agenda contains an item which was so called on this blog several weeks. The only error was a matter of dates and that occurred simply because the newly elected chair and vice-chair opted to cancel the first two meetings taking place during their reign.

What was that item? Oh yes, to reduce the amount of time and opportunities for the community to participate in public comment, in general and at "special" meetings. Is this surprising? No, given the amount of hostility of the current composition of commissioners. Commissioner and current vice-chair (and city contract employee) Peter Hubbard tried to get this item on the agenda twice last year but alas, was unable to follow through with it because he didn't attend the meetings where it was scheduled.

Now that City Hall has completed its seizure of the CPRC, you'll see more items on the agenda which cater to its interests and fewer that the community can or will be interested in responding to and even if the community does choose to respond, the commission has made it more and more clear that if it won't behave downright hostilely to these community members, it will make it clear that it's disinterested. And it's ironic that given that public participation at meetings has actually increased (without significantly adding to their length as 98% of the chit chat at meetings still involves either commissioners speaking with each other or commissioners going toe to toe with the city manager's employees).

We can all give praise to Ralph M. Brown's act because if it didn't exist, there probably wouldn't be any public comment during commission meetings period.

Complaints filed with the CPRC appear to be down but out in the communities, they're still up where they've been for the past several years. People just don't trust the mechanism that was set up in part to give them a place to voice their concerns about police and community relations.

The derogatory comments made by Hubbard (who apparently isn't waiting to see the casebooks for the current four officer-involved death cases to issue a finding) and Councilman Steve Adams (who then moved on to apparently slandering the CPRC's investigative firm which wasn't too happy about that) went further to show that the commission's not the place to be represented unless you're from the Greater Chamber of Commerce crowd.

Adams and Hubbard also sent a loud message to anyone who's not from the Chamber crowd and that's if you witness an officer-involved death, there are two things for you to do.

1) Keep quiet until you've read the police department's official press release of the events which took place.

2) If you don't agree with these version of events, whatever you do, do not agree to be interviewed by the Riverside Police Department detectives. There is simply no point to put yourself out to give an eyewitness account that differs from that given by the police officers.

Since the city has essentially shut down the CPRC's investigations (and if you don't believe that, just wait to see how the current backlog of four cases plays out), there's no need to worry about being contacted by a CPRC investigator. And if you do not tell the city or the police department what it wants to hear on an officer-involved death, city council members like Adams will brand you a liar in a public meeting. Because there's no sure way of knowing whether Adams spoke the truth that these witnesses were reinvestigated later (which would be difficult given that many of them were likely transitory) and it appears he may have been somewhat less than truthful with his allegations about the CPRC's investigative firm having fabricated evidence or witness statements.

That allegation raised by Adams first came in response to the attempts of Councilmen Mike Gardner and Andrew Melendrez to offer an alternative to the plans of two of the members of the Governmental Affairs Committee to enforce what's become known as the Hudson Protocol. What probably happened is that Gardner's counter motion and his assessment of the past protocol of the CPRC as a successful model that worked for Riverside likely piqued the Ward Seven councilman to the point where it was time once again, to try to discredit the investigative firm hired by the CPRC. Insinuations and more than that have been made for months (and in Adams' case, longer than that) that this investigative firm was trampling crime scenes and contaminating evidence. The allegations from Adams about fabricating witness statements was only the latest in an attempt to attack the fairly successful investigative protocol that had been in place for six years by tarnishing the reputation of the investigative firm that carried out the CPRC's investigation. The only thing, is that so far it at least it appears that these allegations are baseless.

One city council member said he looked into what Adams said soon after and found the allegations made by Adams to be groundless. He thought it might be an issue between Adams and the investigative firm for further discussion and that if it were one of the investigators, he would be talking to the firm's lawyer.

As far as the contributions by the involved police officers, a Riverside Police Department officer stated at a discussion forum geared towards law enforcement officers that the police officers involved in onduty shootings are no longer giving voluntary statements but are taking the Fifth Amendment and then being compelled by the Internal Affairs Division to give statements in the more confidential arena. If this individual speaks the truth (and his accuracy record on this blog was pretty good as it turned out while he was here), then this development in how the police department conducts its "criminal" investigations was a long time coming. It's believed that former Riverside Police Officers' Association attorney Michael Lackie was pushing for the department to adopt this practice. Lackie was allegedly fired by the RPOA and replaced by another lawyer within his firm.

After the commission is done restricting public comment, they will be discussing the public pamphlet for the Joseph Darnell Hill shooting investigation. As you know, Hill is the last case that will likely be investigated by the CPRC for at least a period of time. It's unlikely that any of the four outstanding officer-involved death cases will ever be investigated by the CPRC. The CPRC passed motions at least once and in some cases twice to initiate independent investigations into the first three fatal shootings on this list.

Carlos Quinonez, Sr. (Sept. 1, 2008) 230 days

Fernando Luis Sanchez: (Sept. 11, 2008) 220 days

Marlon Oliver Acevedo: (Oct. 31, 2008) 170 days

Russell Franklin Hyatt: (Jan. 17, 2009) 61 days

Speaking of the CPRC's public pamphlets on the officer-involved death cases it used to investigate, there is also an agenda item dealing with how public reports will be drafted. Gee, maybe they'll just vote to abolish the pamphlets altogether.

Press Enterprise
Columnist Dan Bernstein writes about about Gottchalks and Greyhound in the same column which actually isn't that hard to do.


Ten months after whapping Greyhound across the snout and threatening to take it to the pound, Riverside's electeds have decided the dawg belongs in town after all -- near the Metrolink station, where it should have gone all along.

If Greyhound ever chauffeured its passengers along such a looping, meandering route, it would be out of business.

I'm not sure exactly what changed here. Over the months, I've heard that Councilman Andy Melendrez didn't want the Hound in his ward, that the RivCo Transportation Commish wasn't nuts about Metrolink bunking with the bus line. Now, it seems a patch of land for the dawg house is suddenly more affordable.

The main thing, I suspect, is the stereotypes and scare tactics (only criminals go Greyhound) couldn't stand up to the fact that some Riversiders truly depend on this service. A growing number of people understood this and weren't about to sit quietly while the bus rolled away.

Besides, how tough can it be for a city to welcome a worthy service after it invites semi-naked giants to play volleyball in a downtown that has been converted to a sand box? Most bus riders are fully clothed, too.

Another profile of a city council candidate in Riverside.

Is Hemet being helped or hurt by early retirements of its public safety employees? It has already had layoffs.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

Beginning this month, and continuing through the end of June, veteran Hemet first responders will begin taking early retirement. City police and fire officials said that will help ease Hemet's sizeable budget shortfall -- but the reduction in personnel will hinder response times.

The Hemet Police Department will lose three sergeants, a detective and two officers, said Police Chief Richard Dana. With those six early retirements, the department will have lost 22 positions, including 18 officers, within three years.

As a result, Hemet police say they will have fewer officers on the streets to handle beats such as traffic patrol.

The Fire Department is losing 11 people: eight who will retire early, one who was laid off and two battalion chiefs who have already left for jobs at other departments.

"We're essentially losing the most senior staff in our department," Hemet Fire Chief Matt Shobert said. "We're losing a lot of history here."

The city's firefighters, who have one of the largest call volumes in the nation, will see response times dip by 30 seconds, Shobert said.

Officials said those remaining in the departments will have to work with what resources they have left, hope to rebuild with the aid of federal stimulus money, and look for a brighter economy ahead.

As hard as it is for the longtime police and firefighters to exit early, department officials say the move is better than seeing people lose their jobs to layoffs.

"Had they not retired, we would have had to lay off people," Dana said. "We're still going to be losing people.

San Bernardino International Airport is read. All it needs are some airplanes and people to ride them.

San Bernardino County's records cite a hostile working environment.

(excerpt, San Bernardino Sun)

This has really crushed them -- it's affected their happiness and their well-being," said Richard Alpers, the attorney representing the four employees.

An investigation launched by the county's human resources office last summer against Chief Deputy Recorder De Ana Thompson substantiated some of the claims made by her employees but ultimately determined there was not enough evidence to prove a hostile work environment existed.

Thompson, who has worked as chief deputy recorder for the past nine years, stands by her record.

"Anyone who understands my work ethic knows I don't ask anyone to do anything I wouldn't do myself," Thompson said. "I would say I'm authoritative. I have high standards. I expect people to do their work."

But Everett, 34, of Highland, says Thompson leads by fear and intimidation and subjects her subordinates to unnecessary ridicule.

"I've never experienced this type of treatment at work before and not being able to get anything resolved or get any help," Everett said. She returned to work in another department, on modified duty, in February after a six-month stress leave.

Will the new San Bernardino Police chief be named by the city council on Monday?

(excerpt, San Bernardino Sun)

The City Charter gives Mayor Pat Morris authority to name a candidate who would then have to be ratified by the City Council. Whoever is selected would succeed Police Chief Michael Billdt, who was first promoted to the chief's position on an interim basis in March 2006.

"IF the Mayor does bring forward a police chief appointment for confirmation by the Council, that would be discussed in closed session under the personnel exception on Monday's agenda labeled `Police Chief,"' mayoral chief of staff Jim Morris wrote in an e-mail Friday.

"IF the Council takes action to confirm the appointment in closed session, the action would (be) announced in open session," the chief of staff continued.

The council met behind closed doors to interview a pair of candidates Thursday night. No council members interviewed for this article would name any candidates or discuss the substance of the job interviews.

"It was a very good interviewing process, we had good candidates," 6th Ward Councilman Rikke Van Johnson said Friday.

"Whoever the selection is is going to do well in our city," he added.

What is cyberstalking?

Some individuals who seem somewhat ignorant on this issue are claiming there's no laws against it, citing state laws. However, cyberstalking is generally seen as a federal crime given that the ISPs and Web sites involved may be located outside of the state of the perpetrator and/or victim. Other state laws address issues often found in cyber stalking including electronic harassment and "criminal threats".

It's interesting that I'm now having cyber harassers including one from three years ago try to throw the investigative part of the issue in my face, daring me to go to law enforcement essentially track them down. Well, there's more to that as well...

This guy's harassed me before and I received some emails about his identity.

first post

FBM Mary, how come no stomp for your buddy cursing ? Just goes to show you what kind of people Mary associates with though.
K.S. seems to have the need to curse on Craigslist. Mary, how will you spin this behavior into being acceptable to us ?
Your sooo good at it.

second post

So FBM Mary since you claim to be a victim of continuous " cyber stalking & harassing, " why don't you have that FBI friend of yours track down, charge and convict these " trolls " for you ?
What's that ?
Because they are doing the exact same thing that YOU do on a daily basis on your blog and on Craigslist ?
Poor Poor FBM Mary, no Disneyland for you this year.

Third post

Thanks for that information.
I think FBM's victimization has less to do with the law and more to do with possible resentment/anger with having a weak father.
I would also throw in there that FBM probably wasn't popular with the boys in grade school. They probably were not interested in FBM.
Where is FBM from ? What is FBM's background ? How does FBM make a living ? Is Riverside FBM's native city ? and if not, Why did FBM leave their native city ? Why the obsessive/compulsive behavior toward politicians, police, and citizens that disagree with FBM ?

There is alot of unknown's as to who FBM is, don't you think ?
Enquiring minds want to know.

These aren't that bad considering the source though the the last one in particular is similar in content to several comments written on this site in 2006. Take a look at some of these written by the same individual several years ago. The ISP associated with some of these posts was a subsidiary of Microsoft that's non-PC based. The company which owns the ISP is based in Redmond, Washington which illustrates the difficulty of using state law and procedure to address the cyber stalking of an individual with an ISP owned and based out of state.

Now where on my blog or Craigslist have I written anything remotely of this ilk?

Will what goes up, cum down? Would Mary/goddess/radfem know the answer to this question when she prefers the same sex?

Poorest Sandalou, we already know who Mary is. Mary is the defender of the criminal element. Although she would never socialize with them, Mary uses the defense of criminals to further her leftist agenda, feminist lesbianist socialism. She has'nt the talents or social skills to become a criminal defense attorney, and so she pretends to be a reporter by day; and moonlights her stand-up comic routine at public city meetings. That Sandalou is Mary Catherine Shelton in a nutshell (literaly).

Mary has no job. Mary has a "sugar daddy" ^ = $. Mary has a lover named Sandalou. Mary has no solution to officer involved shootings because Mary does not believe in cops using deadly force EVER! Mary complains at any and every meeting that she can attend cause (fact is) Mary is a attention whore.

Antisocial, Immature and Mentally disturbed; 3 character traits of Mary Catherine Shelton. Many townfolk describe Mary as such.

dearest mary wallflower, you simply do not uderstand the dynamics between the sexes. I understand why. Millions of women are turned on by crude and sexual comments in the right platform, but of course, you would not know that you frustrated old maid you. I never denegrate women, and I do not consider you one. You are a wallfly who gets turned on by talking about police misconduct at city hall meetings. You are a wallflower that when most people are making love on a saturday night, You receive your orgasms by conducting late night background checks on cops. Go right ahead and spend your life hoping to break the next police scandal. With your prestigious reporting resume that shall never happen. P.S., What makes you think that innocent bystander is a male?

Dear Queen Mary, you are a loser. You will never be black so they call you a wigger. You pretend to defend for blacks because you have a guilty complex from your white ancestors being slave owners themselves. You disagree with anyone who does not believe like you do, thus proven. Your hobby is attacking the police because you cannot become one of them. Black people laugh at you because you smell do not comb your hair or take baths. You walk around town because you lost your liscense for repeated DUI's. You refuse to look at yourself and your issues with men in authority issues because you cannot handle the truth. Instead you criticize the best and the brightest, the men and women in law enforcement. I'd say you are the one who's character is at best questionable. There is one thing that you are good for. You are the entertainment at the city council meetings. Hooray for free speech!

If you look at Craigslist lately, you'll find some of these themes revisited several years later by the same individual. And you know what the scary thing is? The last thing I heard about him when I knew him was that he was trying to get a gun because he wanted to be a police officer.

Tomorrow morning, I will be contacting the FBI which I was told by the Riverside Police Department was called in and then took over an investigation of harassment on my site along with the U.S. Attorney's office in May 2006, an investigation which apparently went "cold" some time later.

It's not that the laws especially federal laws aren't adequate to address cyber harassment/stalking. It's just that the investigations themselves are extremely time-consuming and difficult as investigators must negotiate and often issue subpoenas involving a variety of ISPs. I was told by the police department that numerous criminal violations were found in harassment comments written on my site including several which violated California PC 422 and state laws against using electronic forms of communication solely to harass. I was also told by them that being able to prove a case of cyberstalking in a court of law was extraordinarily difficult which I understood.

And if the Schiavone supporters at Craigslist really want to pal around with this guy online, all I can say is be careful because this guy's really not as harmless as they think he is. Do I fear that this guy will take his behavior off-line (especially since he's begin to escalate again)? Yes I do, and I fear that maybe he took his fantasy of owning a concealed weapon one step further. Just like I fear the police officers who engaged in the same activity which I believe fed this guy's participation before, given that he harbors cop fantasies.

But then guess what, the identity of one of the other commenters has proven to even more interesting than the perennial loser above.

Blogging isn't always fun but despite all of this, it's ultimately very rewarding. Still, like other female bloggers I have to take precautions so I can feel as safe as possible in a world where cyber harassers dare you to get law enforcement to go after them. And one of the things I will have to do will be to circulate the most recent photo of a particular individual and the vehicle he's believed to be driving now to my neighbors so that in case he does show up, they'll know.

Oh and then I had this lovely comment published.

(excerpt, Craigslist)

You're welcome. I might agree with you.

But you know you are going to get a smart ass comment to your comments. It usually will reiterate the victimization of saps who chose to not wear undergarments and orgasms and don't shower and such. She likes those analogies and defends those people (since she is one of them) to no end.

I don't know where you get the weak father figure and not popular with boys in school - but it's good foddar!

As to where she's from - my best guess is Colorado, St. Scholastica Academy in Canon City, CO to be exact. ( or was it says our journalist for Black Voice is from there - and that's our Mary).

As far as how she makes a living. . . . who knows. I'm guessing it's selling her crap to newspapers, particularly the Black Voice.

Why did she leave? Only Mary knows.

Her obsessions with cops and everyone else - use your imagination!

Don't have to "use my imagination" to find out who wrote this or who provided the information to whoever did. All I have to do is call a specific city department and ask about his status and hopefully I'll hear back from that department by the end of the day. After that, what links this individual to the Craigslist postings will be posted here.

But individuals who can't even use their own names to engage in this behavior do this so this blog will no longer exist. So I will be too humiliated, too intimidated or too scared to keep posting about what's going in this city, including City Hall and the police department. The clear sore spots for those who choose to harass and stalk me for blogging. Because you can take this to the bank. If everything was as blissful and wonderful and perfect as they made it out to be, they wouldn't engage in this activity. There wouldn't be any need to do so. There's only need to do it if these individuals know fully well that things aren't as wonderful as they paint them and that they know this. Maybe they benefit from it or believe they do, but they don't want what's not so wonderful (and I get enough tips from my readers who do appreciate this blog to fill three books) to be posted about here. So they do the only thing they can think of doing, they harass the messenger.

Columbine (April 20, 1999-April 20, 2009)

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