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, May 03, 2009

Election 2009: Let's get ready to rumble

On Police Culture in Maywood:

"The investigation revealed that officers in the Maywood Police Department frequently engage in inappropriate sexual banter. Allegations of sexual harassment of nonsworn personnel and members of the public by officers were raised. The investigation revealed a significant problem with the use of vulgarity and the display of discourtesy and rudeness by officers. Similarly many allegations were raised regarding racial and ethnic bias of officers. One Latino officer was reportedly referred to as "N----r" by another officer because of his dark complexion. This same officer reportedly had a swastika etched in his locker. Another officer was called a "Louisana N----r". Also, undocumented immigrants were commonly referred to as "Mos" short for "Mojados".

---excerpted from California State Attorney General Jerry Brown's investigative report on Maywood Police Department

On the handling of Personnel Complaints:

"There were also instances where no investigation was done in response to a citizen complaint and there was no explanation proffered as to why. Also there was at least one instance where no investigation was done because it was anticipated that litigation would likely follow. In that case, a tort claim was filed with the City by alleged victims of officer misconduct and eventually a civil lawsuit was filed.

In other instances, the investigations of complaints were delayed and not completed within the one-year period required by law. This is a significant obstacle in that the agency can be barred from imposing serious and warranted disipline in instances where officers were guilty of willful misconduct."

--Excerpted from Brown Report on Maywood Police Department

Even as mailin ballots prepare to go out in Riverside this week for the city council elections, the battle over the fourth ward heats up again with sparring going on between incumbent, Frank Schiavone and challenger Paul Davis. It's been a contentious contest since the filing of a lawsuit against City Clerk Colleen Nichol (who was represented by City Attorney Gregory Priamos) by Schiavone over Davis' campaign statement. And it's barely let up since, with about another month ago until the ballots cast by voters in three city wards will be counted and the results will be known.

One of the battlegrounds is over public safety.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

Both men are keen on public safety. Davis said Schiavone failed to keep his promise to add seven police officers and a third police station to Ward 4.

Only two police officers are assigned to Orangecrest, Hillcrest and Canyon Crest, but burglaries are up 200 percent, Davis said.

Schiavone counters that during his tenure, he has put 39 more police officers on the city's streets and supported the use of a court-ordered gang injunction to break one of the most violent criminal street gangs in Riverside. He said he added 18 firefighters and opened five fire stations. He said he would like to build a police station on property at Van Buren Boulevard and Barton Road in Orangecrest.

Both candidates endorse the Community Police Review Commission as long as it doesn't jeopardize criminal investigations in officer-involved deaths. The time to question whether police actions fell within established policy is after the yellow tape is down, Davis said. Schiavone goes further, saying the police, district attorney and coroner must already have concluded their reports.

The slow response times for police officers up in the Orangecrest and Mission Grove neighborhoods have been a sore spot for residents there for years and has led to a campaign to build what will be the East Neighborhood Policing Center station there to help addressing a huge increase in burglaries in a neighborhood filled with daily commuters.

It's great that 39 (actually 45 officer positions) positions were created during the past several years and most of those were first proposed while the city was still under its stipulated judgment with the State Attorney General's office before it was dissolved in March 2006. Then again, you have to balance these newly created positions with 23 current vacancies in the patrol division. That and threatened salary freezes (while the bargaining unit undergoes contract negotiations) has put a damper on the environment of law enforcement in the city even though the city's not done any layoffs of sworn officers like Hemet, civilian employees like Corona or threatened layoffs like Riverside County.

With cuts and freezes anticipated or already faced by many Inland Empire law enforcement agencies, the federal stimulus package specifically for funding police positions has attracted a lot of interest. In the Riverside Police Department, there are two words that have become a mantra in the patrol division: "More bodies".

But then with salary freezes allegedly being proposed to at least one police union by the City of Riverside, the situation is looking a bit dicey for the immediate future. The city's currently applying for the Department of Justice COPS grant money to fund 15 positions in the patrol division for about three years but that's a very competitive arena it's entering into and it has to pass the muster of the COPs office and make a commitment to keeping those officer positions filled beyond the period of time that the grant funds the positions.

The department also has to address any officer/supervisor ratios that may increase with the refilling of these positions which is a challenge given that allegedly the ratio's averaging at higher than 7 to 1. Asst. City Manager Tom DeSantis insisted that the police department was "fully staffed" in June 2008 but few people believed him, especially when any attempts to get copies of the documentation cited by him was met with City Attorney Gregory Priamos producing a link for the 2008-09 preliminary annual budget which didn't produce the figures cited by DeSantis during that particular city council meeting. But then DeSantis is heavily invested in the Community Police Review Commission and the only thing scarier than his involvement in that body is in his alleged micromanagement of the police department for his boss, City Manager Brad Hudson. If indeed this is taking place, both men probably have the blessing of the majority of the city council including those who lead it or at least a vocal minority.

This is all taking place as the Press Enterprise Editorial Board endorsed all three incumbents including Schiavone in the upcoming election. The thrust of the Board's argument in favor of all three is to maintain the momentum of the Riverside Renaissance. The program that provided $2.1 billion in projects but in exchange for getting them done now instead of later, the city residents (and their children) will wind up paying about $4-5 billion due to bond sales used to pay for a lot of it.


Schiavone, in Ward 4, is a councilman fully involved in city decisions. Unlike the other two incumbents on the ballot, he has a detailed command of city issues and a vision of Riverside that extends beyond the boundaries of his district. He shows a solid grasp of city finances and the challenges of budgeting in a slumping economy.

Schiavone has also learned from his experience with the DHL project, and sees the need to balance the economic potential of March Air Reserve Base with neighbors' concerns. And he recognizes that the city cannot push ahead with projects without sufficient public discussion and support.

The Board is right about Schiavone's command of citywide issues even as one of the criticisms against him is that this doesn't carry over to ward issues and Schiavone's shown more of a leaning towards the citywide focus of his position. Not long ago while both he and former City Councilman Ed Adkison served on the Governmental Affairs Committee, they flirted with the idea of having runoff elections for ward positions be decided citywide. But it didn't go very far.

That's an interesting contrast with someone like Hart who's a very strong ward representative much more so than her predecessor, Terri Thompson but not nearly as strong on city-wide issues.

Hart did well at the candidates forum as did both Davis and Councilman Andrew Melendrez that was held at the Arlington Library. The candidates gave their stances on issues and answered questions from those in attendance. But the forums for the first (and in some wards, only round) of Election 2009 are beginning to wind down.

People have contacted me about the latest mailer going around Ward Four right now about Davis' Riverside Police Department personnel records and it's an interesting example of how campaign strategies work out because usually you don't see mailers like this one in the latter weeks of campaigning unless the candidate and his supporters believe they are necessary. Which is kind of puzzling because most of us have been told by his supporters that Schiavone's on his way to a third term and as an incumbent, he already enjoys a sizable advantage right down to having apparently been involved in creating the language governing the mailin ballot election system being used now.

But then it's difficult to tell until the ballots are counted, which candidate is going to win. However, having been harassed numerous times by a very small anonymous peanut gallery on Craigslist, it's kind of a head scratcher to see why these couple of individuals would be so busy doing this rather than out doing that little bit of extra campaigning for their candidate.

Anyway, here's the mailer in this blow by blow account of its language. Because this is usually the type of mailer that you see sent out as an act of desperation when candidates aren't sure that running on their own records against the challenges of those records by their competition is going to be enough to propel them into being reelected. Kind of like the one mailed last year in the District One county supervisor race which posted pictures of unidentified Latino men taking a break from working and insinuated (without of course checking) that they were undocumented immigrants and then placing a map of Mexico shadowed in the background.

But this one while having more pages than that political mailer, still appears somewhat streamlined.

The first page shows some window blinds and somebody's eyes peeking through them from inside some room or building. The text reads, "Candidate Paul Davis has a secret he doesn't want you to know!"

Do these unidentified eyes belong to a criminal hiding from police, to a person hiding from a criminal or to a celebrity hiding from the paparazzi? See, it's kind of vague, though considerably less so the infamous campaign mailer against Republican Congressional candidate, Ken Calvert which depicted a scantily dressed woman on a bed, being handed cash by an unidentified hand. Still, it's meant to titillate the average city resident and it probably does. What did this candidate do? Why is he hiding behind blinds from the authorities?

Okay, so inquiring minds do want to know so it's a good bet that most of the people in the fourth ward who get this mailer in their boxes are going to follow their curious natures and open it up to see what's inside. On the left side is a manilla folder which has a picture which appears to be some sort of mug shot of the "suspect", Davis which was taken at some event. On that pages are ripped or torn out excerpts of the "City of Riverside Personnel Action" which was posted on Davis' Web site in its entirety. One piece of paper states what it is and then the other highlights in yellow, the section of "recommend for hire" with an "x" through the box that reads doubtful and unmarked are the boxes for "Yes" and "No." But that's the only part of that form that appears on the mailer.

There's a series of quotes, and one is the following.

"What he doesn't tell you is that he failed to complete his probational training-he washed out."

----Personnel Action Forum (source cited in Schiavone mailer).

Actually, that quote didn't come from the personnel action form at all and since the mailer only published a portion of the "personnel action form", there's clearly something the author of this mailer about the "secret he doesn't want you to know? doesn't want the Ward Four voter to know. Because why claim the above statement came from the Personnel Action Form when it actually didn't? The only reason would be so that the voter actually thinks that statement was written on the part of the "personnel action form" not actually included on the mailer. After all, another quote on that page allegedly made by Davis about openness and transparency in government is also attributed to a source, in this case being his campaign Web site.

Another possible reason is because providing the true citation for that quote gets a little bit tricky and potentially embarrassing.

While statement's citation implies that this came directly from the form itself as if it were an opinion provided by a police department representative on the action form, it isn't actually found on the form itself.

Here's a copy of that personnel action form that's somewhat more detailed than that provided by the mailer. Is the above statement on that form anywhere? Does it make any sense that it actually would be something written by a supervisor on an action form? Not really, because it's not utilizing very professional language is it? Surely, Riverside Police Department personnel would utilize more professional language than the above statements and one wonders why this mailer designer would assume that most people don't know this.

Sure enough, this statement didn't come from the "personnel action form" and that's where things get interesting. Its origin is actually as a quote attributed to Schiavone himself. But not from any press coverage of the controversy surrounding the earlier lawsuit filed by the Schiavone camp. Actually, its original source was through an anonymous press release of sorts posted on Craiglist a while back when this controversy first arose.

So yes, this quote that's been attributed to a police department personnel action form actually was posted and attributed to something Schiavone said at some point about his lawsuit by an anonymous poster on Craiglist. The statement above was actually posted by someone on Craigslsit who was so honest, trustworthy and transparent about his or her intentions that of course he or she included or signed his name to this posting.

Except that he or she didn't.

And this mailer had just about reeled me in to declare that Schiavone was the more honest, ethical and transparent choice in this political contest. However, the action of misleading voters to believe that a quote attributed to Schiavone by an anonymous party on Craigslist was actually attributed to a Riverside Police Department "personnel action form" is a tough hill to climb.

In fact, nothing that has ever been posted by a Schiavone supporter on Craiglist whether factual "press releases" or derogatory and harassing comments against their critics has ever had a name attached to it. If you read the majority of what's been posted there on behalf of Schiavone's campaign, you won't have much difficulty understanding why that's indeed the case. What's intriguing is seeing some of Craiglist's anonymous comments ending up on campaign mailers.

What's even more interesting is that this same anonymous person apparently also posted another release on an allegation that Davis threatened to sue the RPOA over his personnel file not long after the press release which actually featured the quote referred to above. Given the somewhat cloistered world of policing especially at the level of its labor associations, it's interesting how the content of a letter by Davis to the RPOA PAC could be leaked out over a month before it was included in a campaign mailer. So that means that the list of people who posted a series of harassing comments including one against me that used information off of another Web site to harass me is probably a short one. Interestingly enough, I received an email that this Web site he or she used, received a visit from someone whose name matches that of a former city employee. That person appeared on my site within hours of when information was first used off of it and then used again, less than two weeks later.

That same anonymous person who harassed me over high school information has systematically harassed any individual on Craigslist he or she perceives to be a critic of Schiavone in disgusting, disturbing and always anonymous ways. It's actually surprising to figure out that the harassment most likely wasn't being done just by people who just were fixated on Schiavone and his critics but were possibly people closer to the campaign. But after reading a quote on the a mailer which actually appeared to originate on Craiglist, well it left me asking a lot of questions about my "fan" club at that other site in terms of exactly who they are and their affiliation with the Schiavone campaign if they are indeed working on that campaign.

Because what exactly is this quote attributed to Schiavone on an anonymous comment on Craiglist doing on a campaign mailer issued by his campaign anyway?

One example of this individual's posting at Craigslist offering an explanation of why on a political forum during a municipal election, he or she is ranting about the breasts, bras and undergarments of their critics.

Since you are obsessed about the comments on your not wearing appropriate undergarments that have appeared here, I have to say they are not lies, they are facts that are pointed out. No different than your facts in your blog about others. Clearly facts are stated and that is not harassment - unless the facts you state about others is "harassment". It goes both ways, you don't wear a bra - fact. If I were a woman and walked into a room without a bra - surely I'd expect to be noticed, therefore, I did it by choice, as you do. But am I to blog about the "rude" comments I receive because of my actions?

Well, I guess it depends on why I try to call attention to myself in the first place, doesn't it? It's your choice to go a la natural - but it doesn't mean people agree or even like to see it. Apparently you like to get a reaction or like the attention. So you know what? Yeah, I wish you'd wear a bra. But that's my opinion and it's an opinion that I am entitled to here. But stating that you don't wear a bra is not harassing - it's a fact. My opinion is that you should wear one!

I'll put the deja vu aside for a moment and continue on with the analysis of the mailer.

There's more language on page two about how Davis had said that he left the Riverside Police Department after six months for a position too good to pass up and more about how his abrupt resignation was significant and that he was refusing to tell "us" why he left law enforcement.

Page three of it, is the aforementioned letter which was hinted at by one of Schiavone's anonymous supporters on Craigslist not long after the RPOA PAC Committee interviewed Schiavone. What's fascinating is that a letter like that could be leaked so quickly on Craigslist when most likely it passed through the hands or was mentioned through the lips of probably a very small list of people. Now over a month later, it's been outed on a Schiavone campaign mailer.

The letter was on Davis' campaign committee letterhead and is addressed to the Riverside Police Officers' Association. Included in the attention list are President Det. Chris Lanzille(actually Lanzillo), PAC Chair Sgt. Patrick McCarthy and Communications representative, Det. William Rodriguez. The letter is as stated:

"Thank you for the opportunity to address your Political Action Commitee on February 26, 2009. It is unfortunate that you have chosen to endorse my opponent but I want you to know that I am not the type of person to take these matters personally... [portion of letter excised?]

Since you chose not to endorse my candidacy, I will require the original tape and any copies made of the interview to be made available to pic-up and destroy. This action needs to occur immediately. Additionally, as previously notified, the signed authorization to release my Sheriff and Police files has been rescinded now and in the future. I will also need to have the original document(s) and any copies returned to me immediately, to be destroyed.

The Riverside Police Officers Association, nor any member is authorized to look into or investigate my background, or to release any confidential information acquired or discussed, now or in the future.

Release of said information, however slight, will result in legal action.

If you have any questions as to the intent or meaning of this document, please contact me at the address as noted above, or by calling [phone number]


Paul Davis

Cc: Edward Winn III, Esquire

Several paragraphs are highlighted in yellow and then circled in red felt tipped pen with this statement below:

Why did Paul Davis rescind his authorization to release his police personnel records? And, now he threatens to sue Riverside Police!

Actually technically speaking, it's not "Riverside Police" he has addressed in his letter, it's the Riverside Police Officers' Association which is the bargaining unit for officers, detectives and sergeants. There's no mention of whether or not the other association, the Riverside Police Administrators' Association also received a similar letter. Perhaps that information will be included in the next mailer circulated among the voters in this series.

And it's ironic that Schiavone supporters brings up the issue of lawsuits and "Riverside Police" given that two police lieutenants, albeit not members of the RPOA have sued him for allegedly retaliating against them for their actions as PAC members during the 2007 election. Councilman Steve Adams, another defendant in that lawsuit, allegedly told an officer he wouldn't be promoted because he supported a candidate running against him.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

The claim filed in March alleges that the city tried to "union bust" the organization that represents police lieutenants and captains. In January 2006, lieutenants Tim Bacon and Darryl Hurt joined the political action committee for the union and voiced their concerns.

In June 2006, the union sued the city. According to the claim, City Manager Brad Hudson and Assistant City Manager Tom DeSantis asked for a list of everyone who voted for the lawsuit and told the lieutenants to "be careful."

During last year's City Council elections, the lieutenants opposed Councilman Steve Adams, a retired officer. The claim stated that since then, Adams and Councilman Frank Schiavone have made "negative and retaliatory remarks," including Schiavone telling an officer to distance himself from the pair if he wanted to be promoted and Adams telling an officer that he would not be promoted because he was supporting another candidate.

Both council members called the lawsuit "frivolous."

So when it comes down to threatened or actual litigation involving the retaliation of members of police unions for PAC activities including who they choose to endorse or not, this issue is a fairly broad one that perhaps can be placed in its full perspective in future blog postings here. Unless of course there needs to be a decision from the courts to decide whether or not Lt. Darryl Hurt, Lt. Tim Bacon and the RPAA members are "real" police officers or not and also employed by the Riverside Police Department.

Should Davis have threatened to take legal action against the association? That depends on the agreement that existed between him and the RPOA PAC regarding his personnel file. If a lawsuit were filed, that is what a judge would issue a decision based upon after hearing evidence and testimony presented by both parties. So that issue has to factor in the voters' minds as well and that's where the information isn't there.

What's missing from this discussion and equation is the type of agreement that existed between Davis and the PAC regarding access to his personnel file. Was it a complete wavier to disclose the information or just to view it? Was it in writing or was it a verbal agreement? Without knowing the terms of the waiver, it's difficult to know whether at any point in the process it was extended enough to the RPOA PAC where they were given permission not just to review his personnel information but disclose it publicly or provide this information to the campaign of the candidate that the PAC did endorse. The type of waiver that was issued by Davis and agreed to by the RPOA PAC defines the meaning behind the letter allegedly sent by Davis to the RPOA's PAC leadership.

Because just because you receive a waiver on a personnel file belonging to a police officer doesn't necessarily mean it's a blanket waiver.

Still, it's ironic to have a warning like that issued at a police union because in the state of California (as well as others) tend to spend a lot of money ensuring that access to police personnel records is highly restricted. So under that reality, it seems unlikely that a police association including its PAC would stray so far away from its core values on privacy and police personnel records to be publicly releasing or allowing for the public release of anything in Davis' record even if he had waived his privacy rights.

Indeed it appears that no one from the RPOA has released any information from Davis' personnel file. There are some people, of course anonymous, who are making kinds of innuendos and insinuations about misconduct in Davis' file but then it's hard to give them any credence because they've spent most of their time harassing anyone who is critical or they perceive to be critical of their candidate not to mention posting false information about people. It would be very surprising if any of these individuals who allege that they have "inside" information on anything on Davis' Riverside Police Department personnel file would be from the RPOA given the stance of police associations on the privacy of personnel records involving police officers. Because if these allegations were indeed true, the ones being made anonymously on Craiglist, then the only place where they would be found would be inside a personnel file. That's a line no police association would likely cross and the RPOA probably wouldn't either.

So if false, where would they come from? And if they were true, where would they come from?

Whether or not this information or innuendo is also false or it's information that's been leaked from Davis' personnel file is not clear. And since no one will make these allegations or claims publicly where everyone can see their faces, it just serves to confuse people about a political candidate which is probably the point of keeping it at the innuendo level and always anonymous. It's not fair to the voters to make innuendos from underneath rocks, not that voters really much credence to individuals who engage in that activity particularly if they're tied to a political campaign of one of the candidates.

If there's truly concerns to be raised about what's in a personnel file by a candidate from 15 years ago, then there's another avenues besides Craigslist to raise these allegations as they are for discussion and dissection. And these individuals would do so if there were truth to them, especially if they're very serious. But the Schiavone camp hasn't done this at least not yet except anonymously on Craigslist and then on several months later on a mailer.

There's not been a single publicly issued statement about this alleged legal action against the RPOA by Schiavone or even the RPOA PAC for that matter. And given the allegations raised in the mailer, that's a bit shocking. Given that the current leadership including President Lanzillo (who has been referred to being as tenacious as a pit bull by his supporters when it comes to defending issues and officers) aren't exactly shrinking violets when it comes to sticking up for themselves and each other, the silence from the union's leadership and its PAC on this issue is a bit mystifying. Maybe there will be some developments in upcoming weeks to this situation.

The endorsement process itself has been the topic of some discussion on Craigslist and elsewhere as well.

It does appear to have been a very dynamic and interesting process of endorsement undertaken by both the police associations (given that the Riverside Police Administrators' Association PAC is endorsing an incumbent being sued by two of its own members) but in this case, Schiavone is alleging that the RPOA is in the cross hairs of this legal action. The RPOA initially contributed to both Davis and Schiavone's campaigns then endorsed Schiavone during a process where its PAC wasn't all in agreement in terms of its members' choices of who to endorse except for the day it voted. Another version had the endorsement vote between the two candidates being close enough to require a tie breaker.

Schiavone received more funding from the RPOA and after he led the charge to change the investigative protocol of the Community Police Review Commission, the RPOA's president told Mary Humboldt that he would be paying Schiavone $30,000 more into the campaign. It's not clear whether that was a serious announcement of intention or simply a acerbic response to Humboldt's contention that Schiavone and other council members were taking action against the CPRC because of their affiliations and endorsements by the RPOA. That won't be known until the appropriate campaign donation disclosure records are made public to the Riverside City Clerk's office and people can check for themselves to see who donated, who didn't and how much money individuals or organizations put in each candidate's coffer.

What made this endorsement situation a bit tricky to start off with was the fact that not only was McCarthy the PAC Chair, he had recently been assigned late last year to the Internal Affairs Division as an investigating sergeant replacing Sgt. Duane May who was reassigned to the department's traffic bureau. He at some point resigned from the PAC as its chair but still remained a member during the endorsement interviews that took place earlier this year. According to one candidate, he participated quite passionately in the discussions about the candidate's positions on the CPRC. Which isn't surprising considering that McCarthy had a lot to say about the CPRC at a workshop he attended with the commissioners in March 2004. But a boisterous discussion and even debate on the CPRC's not a bad thing at all, it's even healthy but how much of a role did the beleaguered commission and the actions play in the question and answer interviews and later deliberations of the RPOA's PAC. Only it can answer that question.

Having an active Internal Affairs Division sergeant on a union board and/or a PAC is somewhat troublesome in terms of both actual and perceived conflict of interest issues both pertaining to the service of an Internal Affairs sergeant to the department and the public but also in terms of how it impacts the freedom of other PAC members and/or RPOA board members to express themselves or discuss issues in the presence of an officer assigned to investigate them in various capacities as part of the definition of that position and the expectations attached to it.

But after the endorsement process had ended at least in terms of the Ward Four race, McCarthy resigned from the committee as a member. At least one person suggested that it was related not to internal strife so much but the fact that his assignment in Internal Affairs did raise some issues of concern that it might not be suitable for him to continue serving on a union committee.

About the same time that McCarthy left the PAC, the other PAC Chair and long-time RPOA Secretary Christian Dinco also resigned because some said, he was tired of it all and ready to move on. Officer Cameron Farrand replaced his as the secretary. You have to go back quite a few years to find the time before Dinco served on the RPOA board. Along with Lanzillo, he was its most senior member.

Also included on the letter was Rodriguez, a detective who has formally endorsed Davis and whose photo is included on his campaign literature. He has been and is an enthusiastic supporter of Davis yet if he participated in the PAC's process (as the letter in the campaign mailer suggests), then what happened with his vote? If he were there and were a staunch supporter of Davis, why did the Schiavone supporters claiming on Craigslist a while back that the vote to endorse Schiavone by the PAC was unanimous?

Rodriguez is intelligent, good at standing on principle and being his own person (probably in part from having been been an officer with the New York Police Department), so he's not likely to go with any crowd. If he likes a candidate, that person is definitely worth checking out. But how did his vote factor into a process that the anonymous peanut gallery at Craigslist that supports Schiavone claims was unanimous?

The mailer then asks what is probably intended to be its thesis question:

"If he won't tell us the truth now-how can we trust him as our councilman?"

Actually, there's truth to this statement, as one would hope that But this is also important for people once they get elected to the dais. But I ask myself this everytime Schiavone purports to support the CPRC so is it a fair one to ask of both candidates? And what about disclosure on issues that Schiavone's been involved in as a council member for eight years?

For example, when the police chief's contract came up for its five-year renewal late last year, did Schiavone participate in this legislative action? And if he did, did he tell the city council in closed session and the city's residents publicly about his living arrangements with the police chief? Chief Russ Leach's response on that issue at the East Neighborhood Policing Center was that it was okay for them to share a household because Schiavone wasn't the city manager and thus not his boss. And there's some truth to that, after all people's personal lives are their own business. But the city council and city residents need to be notified of any situation which may involve any potential or perceived conflict of interest that should arrive when legislative actions come before the city council including the renewal of employee contracts. A city council voting on an employee contract would fall in that category.

Did Priamos issue a public notification in this case? And what of the same situation and how it pertains to allegations raised by Bacon and Hurt in their lawsuit which alleges that city officials and direct employees made statements implying that they were involved in the promotional process, which is supposed to be the discretionary purview of the police chief?

A retired officer, Sgt. Daniel Padelford, complete with a "retired" badge photo next to his quote stated the following on the final page of the mailer:

"As a retired Riverside Police Officer with 40 years of experience, I am appalled that 4th ward candidate Paul Davis, Paul Davis would even mention his law enforcement jobs after failing to complete probation and resigning from two law enforcement agencies within less than one year. Probation is a part of the selection process in evaluating trainees to determine fitness for duty. I know both candidates in this race from their times with the Riverside Police Dept.; and, that is why I join the overwhelming majority of law enforcement in supporting Frank Schiavone."

The roles paid by retired Riverside Police Department officers in this political campaign have proven to be very interesting. More to come on that development as well and the issue of "police officers" support of political candidates both in the Ward Four race and in general as well.

Over 40 people met at the Arlington Library's community room to listen to panelist present on the issues pertaining to the Community Police Review Commission. Many people had questions ranging on what the real reasons the city had for changing the long-standing investigative protocol used by the CPRC to whether or not either the federal or state justice department had to launch further investigations of the police department to whether the CPRC needed its own independent counsel. A list of action items were made including several which will be implemented within the next 30 days addressing some of the concerns and issues pertaining to the CPRC.

Two commissioners, Chani Beeman and Art Santore, attended the meeting. Former commissioner, Jim Ward who resigned a month ago did as well.

Speaking of the CPRC, a lot of people have contacted me about this video that depicts Ward, Miguel Morales and myself in ClayMation being "interviewed" about the CPRC. The disclosure states that the content of our "interviews" comes from a recent CPRC meeting which if it's recent, couldn't be the same meeting because the three of us haven't even attended the same meeting in some months. It's probably

People did say it was clever, well-made but that it's hard to be that impressed by a video telling the "truth" about what happens at CPRC meetings when there's no one claiming responsibility for making it. But they saw it for what it was, someone opposed to the CPRC particularly Ward and it's not like Ward hasn't been ridiculed through video depictions in the past as he was by police officers in 2004 who during a break in a training class watched CPRC training videos and poked fun at Ward in particular. An officer and current CPRC commissioner who attended the training tried to complain about it to then Sgt. John DeLaRosa who said that nothing could be done about it.

So Ward's no stranger to this kind of treatment. His response to questions about the video was to laugh, understanding that there are people out there

Being anonymous does allow you to do and write things that you probably wouldn't do publicly (and that's often the litmus test for anonymity judging by about 95% of what's con Craigslist these days). However, it does diminish your credibility somewhat if people don't know who you are. So there's an advantage to not being anonymous even though it does open you up to more criticism (which is fine) and attacks including emotionally disturbed individuals such as some of those appearing on Craigslist including those who ask or demand you address something "honestly" when they can't even be honest in terms of their own conduct on that site. Why? Because they don't want anyone to associate their actions there with who they are when they're not online.

One of the Press Enterprise stories receiving the most comments is this one about the Riverside Police Department who handcuffed two sixth-grade girls. A pretty contentious and interesting debate going on there.

The Press Enterprise Editorial Board isn't too thrilled with the recall effort in Moreno Valley.


And voters already had their say on the issue, as the money flowing to Hastings' campaign was no secret before the election. She prevailed anyway. There is no need to repeat the election six months after voters' last decision.

The recall proponents also seem to miss the fact that the warehouse project won unanimous support on the council. Had Hastings voted no, the tally would have been 4-1 in favor of the warehouse. So the recall hopes to punish a council member over a vote that would have made no difference to the project's fate.

Moreno Valley has better uses for civic time and public money than a pointless, disruptive recall election. Elected officials' development decisions do not warrant recall simply because some people do not like the outcome.

But Moreno Valley won an important court decision against the state.

Will Maywood be the location of the next state consent decree in California?
The State Attorney General's Office's report on Maywood Police Department.

Riverside City Council Candidate Forum

Ward Six Candidates:

May 4 at 7:00 p.m., League of Women Voters, Candidate Forum, La Sierra Public Library

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