NEWS of the Week - Jan 21 to Jan 27, 2013
on some NAACC / LACP issues of interest


NEWS of the Week 
on some issues of interest to the community policing and neighborhood activist across the country

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following group of articles from local newspapers and other sources constitutes but a small percentage of the information available to the community policing and neighborhood activist public. It is by no means meant to cover every possible issue of interest, nor is it meant to convey any particular point of view ... We present this simply as a convenience to our readership ...

NOTE: To see full stories either click on the Daily links or on the URL provided below each article.


Jan 27, 2013


Anonymous Hijacks U.S. Sentencing Commission Website Over Internet Activist's Death

Anonymous, the hacker-activist group, said it hijacked the U.S. Sentencing Commission's website in order to avenge Aaron Swartz's death. Swartz, who was an Internet activist, recently committed suicide.

The commission's website, which is a single entity of the judicial branch, was hijacked early Saturday morning and had a warning message on it that read that Swartz's death was a crossed line.

Here is part of the message from Anonymous:

“Citizens of the World,

Anonymous has observed for some time now the trajectory of justice in the United States with growing concern. We have marked the departure of this system from the noble ideals in which it was born and enshrined. We have seen the erosion of due process, the dilution of constitutional rights, the usurpation of the rightful authority of courts by the “discretion” or prosecutors. We have seen how the law is wielded less and less to uphold justice, and more and more to exercise control, authority and power in the interests of oppression or personal gain.”

According to Anonymous hackers, they were able to break into several government computers and make copies of top-secret information that they are threatening to release to the public.




Mexican Violence Prompts Self-Policing by Civilians

MEXICO CITY — An outbreak of violence in rural southwestern Mexico has led civilians in a string of communities to take up arms and police their own communities, shining a light on the lack of state security as a new administration prepares to take on the country's violence.

The latest eruption of citizen policing began about three weeks ago in the small, mountainous town of Ayutla de los Libres, in Guerrero State, when residents picked up rifles and machetes and arrested at least three dozen people they said the authorities had failed to apprehend.

Since then, the practice has spread to other areas of the state, with movement leaders and local human rights officials saying more than a hundred small communities are now patrolling themselves.

Last week, local news media reported that indigenous communities in Jalisco State were also planning their own citizen police forces.

Vigilante justice is not uncommon in Mexico, particularly in rural, indigenous areas where there is a lack of police officers and mistrust of state institutions runs deep. But the spread of drug and organized crime gangs into remote regions in recent years has worsened the sense of lawlessness there, creating the kind of flare-ups in violence that the new government of President Enrique Peña Nieto has promised to control with a planned paramilitary force.




Police calls up, major crimes down in Cheyenne

CHEYENNE -- Crimes like robbery and aggravated assault appear to be decreasing here, thanks in part to vigilant community members, officials say.

In the last three years, part one crimes have fallen by 14 percent for the Cheyenne Police Department. Those crimes include murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, larceny and vehicle theft.

There was an increase in 2012, from 370 in 2011 per 10,000 residents to 404, according to the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation and the FBI. But between 1999 and 2009, there was an average of 455 such crimes per 10,000. The figure from 2010-12 was 392.

“This reduction has a lot to do with people helping the department,” Police Chief Brian Kozak said. “We really wanted to communicate with citizens, because that's the key in policing.

“We can't do it by ourselves. We need to have those extra ears and eyes out there to report crimes to us.” Kozak said that over the last several years, his staff has been working on communicating with residents and educating them about police work.



From the Department of Justice

Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women Acting Director Bea Hanson Speaks
at the D.C. Office of Victim Services' National Stalking Awareness Month Event

I try to start each day by combing the news for articles relevant to the work of my office. I thought I'd begin my comments by sharing a few of the stories I came across recently:

In Park Ridge, IL, a 31-year-old man was arrested and charged with cyber stalking. According to police, he sent more than 1,000 social media or text messages to the victim, some of which were inappropriate. He would also call the woman from her backyard and ask her to look outside while partially clothed, police said. Officers made an arrest the same day as the complaint.

In Cleveland, OH after ignoring several warnings from police, an 18-year-old man was charged with both felony and misdemeanor crimes for stalking his ex-girlfriend. The man repeatedly called and sent text messages to the 17-year-old girl. He also went to a home where she was babysitting and tried to force his way into the home. Both attend the same high school.

Athens-Clarke, GA police arrested a man for aggravated stalking after he tried to kick in the door of his victim's residence in a housing project where he had been banned for two years, according to a police report. A police officer handling the case noted in the report that he will ask a judge to keep the suspect in jail until his court date because of his unwillingness to stay away from the victim.

Stalking is a complex crime that is often missed, misunderstood, and underestimated. Results of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2010 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS), found that, conservatively, 6.6 million U.S. citizens were stalked in a year and that 1 in 6 women and 1 in 19 men were stalked at some point in their lives. For those of you unfamiliar with this study or the alarming rates of stalking perpetration, I'll review a few more facts. Although anyone can be a victim of stalking, females are nearly three times more likely to be stalked than males, and young adults have the highest rates of stalking victimization. For the overwhelming majority of victims, the stalker is someone known to them — an acquaintance, a family member, or, most often, a current or former intimate partner. The NISVS report also confirmed what law enforcement, prosecutors, victim service providers, and other professionals have been hearing from victims for years — that most stalking cases involve some form of technology.



From the Department of Homeland Security

Combating Human Trafficking: A Look at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center's Efforts

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and it is, for me, an opportunity to reflect on the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center's (FLETC) leadership in providing training for combating human trafficking nationwide.

At the FLETC, we have developed and delivered video, web-based and in-person human trafficking trainings to provide federal, state, and local law enforcement the tools and strategies they need to identify human trafficking victims and prosecute offenders. The FLETC developed and delivered a web-based training specifically for state and local law enforcement to educate them on how to differentiate human trafficking (compelling another to commit acts of commercial sex or forced labor), from human smuggling (voluntarily agreeing to illegally cross the US border), how to recognize the signs of human trafficking guring routine duties, and the immigration relief available to trafficking victims.

Recently, the FLETC partnered with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations, the FBI, the Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit of the U.S. Department of Justice, and the Department of Labor to deliver training to specialized task forces called Anti-Trafficking Coordination Teams. The FLETC expects to complete training for all six teams by the end of the fiscal year.



Jan 26, 2013


LAUSD plans to add 1,000 new campus aides for security at elementary schools

To view an LAUSD memo about campus aides, click here.

The Los Angeles Unified School District plans to make more than 1,000 new hires to bolster security at hundreds of campuses in a move some critics have called "security on the cheap."

More than 400 LAUSD elementary school campuses are slated to receive 1,087 campus aides - a minimum of two on each campus - as early as March 1, LAUSD school board president Monica Garcia told the Daily News on Friday.

The $4.2 million plan comes a month after the Dec. 14 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. that killed 20 first-graders and six adults.

"Another two people on each campus can help us maintain a safe environment that can ease the minds of our employees, parents and students," Garcia said. "This way we can focus on reading and writing, teaching and learning."

But Scott Folsom, a Mount Washington Elementary School Parent Teacher Association member and state PTA board member, said it's "all smoke and mirrors."

"What they're doing is security on the cheap," he said. "I fear that we will end up having a person with a roll of yellow stickers and a sign-up sheet." http://www.dailynews.com/breakingnews/ci_22454521/lausd-plans-add-1-000-new-campus-aides


Anonymous threatens Justice Department over hacktivist death

(CNN) -- In anger over the recent death of an Internet activist who faced federal charges, hackers claiming to be from the group Anonymous threatened early Saturday to release sensitive information about the U.S. Department of Justice.

They claimed to have one such file on multiple servers ready for immediate release.

The hackers apparently hijacked the website of the U.S. government agency responsible for federal sentencing guidelines, where they posted a message demanding the United States reform its justice system or face incriminating leaks to select news outlets.

The lengthy, eloquently written letter was signed "Anonymous."

The suicide of Internet activist Aaron Swartz on January 11 triggered the posting of the hackers' message to the web address of the United States Sentencing Commission, they said. His death, which they blamed on the justice system, "crossed a line," the letter said.



Starting Today, It's Illegal to Unlock Your Cellphone

You likely have a cellphone that you bought from a carrier, like AT&T, Verizon or Sprint, and that phone only works on that carrier's cellular and data network -- unless you "unlock" it.

That is a software process that allows the phone to work on other carriers if you put in a new SIM card or want to take the phone to another carrier for service.

If that sounds complicated to you and like something you wouldn't bother with, then today's news won't matter to you. But if that's something you've done before or have thought about doing, then you should know that starting today it is illegal to unlock a subsidized phone or tablet that's bought through a U.S. carrier.

Why now? Starting today, the U.S. Copyright Office and Library of Congress are no longer allowing phone unlocking as an exemption under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

You can read the full docket here but, in short, it is illegal to unlock a phone from a carrier unless you have that carrier's permission to do so. If you're wondering what this has to do with copyright, it turns out not much.



Richmond, Virginia Police Study Tour for Lebanese Internal Security Forces

The U.S. Department of State is sponsoring seven members of Lebanon's Internal Security Forces (ISF) for a study tour of community policing practices in Richmond, Virginia, January 28 to February 1. The participants will learn the Richmond Police Department's successful community policing principles for carrying out law enforcement and public safety responsibilities - practices that participants will apply in their own communities in Lebanon.

The Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, through its partnerships with U.S. federal, state, and local police agencies, sponsors study tours and hands-on training opportunities for international partner countries from around the world. The Bureau has provided training in community policing to the Lebanese Internal Security Forces since 2010. This study tour aims to provide the ISF with a better understanding of U.S. community policing methods to aid in the formalization of a new Community Policing Pilot Police Station in Beirut.



Jan 25, 2013



York City Police Dept.'s newest community-policing tool is like a Segway, sort of

At 6-feet-5, with size 15 feet, York City Police Officer Mike Davis wasn't exactly comfortable riding a Segway.

But as one of the city's designated downtown officers -- who don't use patrol cruisers -- a Segway would be useful in a number of ways, he said, including being able to make traffic stops, chasing down fleeing suspects and simply having a ready-made conversation starter with passers-by.

In fact, the department already has three that have become an integral part of the downtown officers' patrol work, according to Officer Blake McBride. He's been riding them since 2005.

"They absolutely make a difference," he said.

PeoplesBank donated the police department's first two Segways in 2007, then a third in 2008, according to Nathan Eifert, the York County-based bank's vice president and director of marketing.





A good step in community policing

You won't come away with a police badge. And, no, you won't be able to make arrests or stop those nasty drivers who cut you off on city streets, around Grant or Blackburn circles, or on Route 128.

But the Citizens Police Academy being launched by the Gloucester Police Department under new chief Leonard Campanello and Lt. John McCarthy is indeed a worthy project that has been presented in other communities and should accomplish several goals for Gloucester residents and the department alike.

The primary one, of course, is to simply give residents the chance to get a first-hand look at what police work and the city's Police Department are all about. The six-week academy, which begins Feb. 27 and carries into early April, will feature classes and workshops on domestic violence, drug issues, motor vehicle law, patrol procedures, firearms awereness — and then a K-9 unit demonstration, a cruiser ride-along and a tour of Middleton jail.

But, more subtly, the academy should also raise participants' awareness of the need for community policing, and how civilians can better work with the department in neighborhoods across the city to bolster Gloucester's public vigilance and safety.

Applications for the academy are available at the police station, at local businesses, and will also be available online beginning Friday on the department's web page at gloucester-ma.gov.

Let's hope this excellent community outreach project draws the level of interest, participation and support it deserves.



New Jersey

Vineland police extend outreach to local schools

VINELAND — Over sandwiches and chocolate milk, diners in the Petway Elementary School cafeteria got to know each other a little better Thursday afternoon.

One day, fifth-rader Javon Daves said he'd like to be a police officer. His lunch companion, Officer Joe Pagano, already is one.

The Vineland Police Department is expanding its community policing into the public elementary schools to connect with the city's youngest residents.

Officers, including Chief Tim Codispoti, were warmly welcomed by fourth- and fifth-graders who slid over at their lunch tables to make room for the visitors.

The Lunch with a Cop program debuted this month in all six elementary schools and will serve as a home base for the officers to get to know the surrounding community.



Jan 24, 2013



Fontana school police acquire 14 Colt military-style, semi-automatic rifles

FONTANA - Fontana Unified School District police have bought 14 military-style rifles to protect students and faculty in the event of a shooter on campus.

But the $14,000 purchase of the semi-automatic guns has infuriated some school board members, who say that arming school police officers with rifles represents a huge departure in policy.

The weapons are stored in locked compartments strategically located throughout the district, said Billy Green, chief of the Fontana school district's police.

Board members Leticia Garcia and Sophia Green are concerned that Superintendent Cali Olsen-Binks committed the district to a change in policy with no input from the board - nor the community.

Garcia and Sophia Green said they both have received calls from community members upset with the decision to upgrade the school police department's firepower.

But several parents and students interviewed Wednesday afternoon said they generally approved of the purchase - which came before a gunman shot and killed 20 children and six adults on Dec. 14 at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.



Women in combat OK'd as Panetta removes ban

WASHINGTON — The Pentagon is lifting its ban on women serving in combat, opening hundreds of thousands of front-line positions and potentially elite commando jobs after generations of limits on their service, defense officials said Wednesday.

The changes, set to be announced Thursday by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, will not happen overnight. The services must now develop plans for allowing women to seek the combat positions, a senior military official said. Some jobs may open as soon as this year, while assessments for others, such as special operations forces, including Navy SEALS and the Army's Delta Force, may take longer.

The services also will have until January 2016 to make a case to that some positions should remain closed to women. The groundbreaking move recommended by the Joint Chiefs of Staff overturns a 1994 rule prohibiting women from being assigned to smaller ground combat units. Officials briefed The Associated Press on condition of anonymity so they could speak ahead of the official announcement.

There long has been opposition to putting women in combat, based on questions of whether they have the necessary strength and stamina for certain jobs, or whether their presence might hurt unit cohesion.



North Korea threatens third nuclear test, more rocket launches

SEOUL: North Korea's top governing body warned on Thursday that the regime will conduct its third nuclear test in defiance of UN punishment, and made clear that its long-range rockets are designed to carry not only satellites but also warheads aimed at striking the United States.

The national defence commission , headed by the country's young leader, Kim Jong-un, denounced Tuesday's UN Security Council resolution condemning North Korea's long-range rocket launch in December as a banned missile activity and expanding sanctions against the regime. The commission reaffirmed in its declaration that the launch was a peaceful bid to send a satellite into space, but also clearly indicated the country's rocket launches have a military purpose: to strike and attack the United States .

The commission pledged to keep launching satellites and rockets and to conduct a nuclear test as part of a "new phase" of combat with the United States, which it blames for leading the UN bid to punish Pyongyang . It said a nuclear test was part of "upcoming" action but did not say exactly when or where it would take place.

"We do not hide that a variety of satellites and long-range rockets which will be launched by the DPRK one after another and a nuclear test of higher level which will be carried out by it in the upcoming all-out action, a new phase of the anti-US struggle that has lasted century after century, will target against the US, the sworn enemy of the Korean people," the commission said, referring to North Korea by its official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.



NYPD Testing New Gun Scanner Device as Crime-Fighting Tool

High-tech scanner detects concealed weapons under clothing

The controversial NYPD stop-and-frisk tactic used to uncover concealed weapons soon may be rendered unnecessary, if a high-tech scanner device proves an effective alternative, reported The New York Daily News.

The new technology is a machine that reads terahertz and can detect guns.

The device, which is small enough to fit in a police vehicle or can be installed on a street corner, allows police to view concealed weapons from a distance through a person's clothing.

“If something is obstructing the flow of that radiation, for example a weapon, the device will highlight that object,” NYC Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly explained on Wednesday.

The department will begin testing the device's portability and effectiveness on the street.

“We still have a number of trials to run before we can determine how best to deploy this technology,” said Kelly. “But we're very pleased with the progress we've made over the past year.”



Oakland hires former Los Angeles police chief Bill Bratton as consultant

OAKLAND (AP) -- Despite hundreds voicing opposition, the Oakland City Council early Wednesday overwhelmingly approved hiring former New York City police commissioner and Los Angeles police chief Bill Bratton as a police consultant.

The council's 7-1 vote shortly after 2 a.m. came after a nine hour-plus meeting that included more than four hours of public comment against and in favor of the regarded international expert known for reducing crime and improving community relations with police.

Police Chief Howard Jordan and Mayor Jean Quan say high-profile Bratton is expected to help develop a crime-fighting plan with community input for the city that last year had its violent crime rate jump 23 percent and 131 homicides, the highest total since 2006.

And a majority of the council agreed with the chief and the mayor-- despite the scores of vocal objections -- and formally approved a $250,000 contract for Bratton's expertise. Their decision was met with choruses of boos and chants including "shame on you!"




Letter to the Editor

Time to Take a Stand Against Violence

To the Editor:

It is with sad and heavy hearts that we begin this New Year due to the horrific event that took place in Newtown just over a month ago. Our most sincere condolences go out to those who lost so much on that December day—to the families whose loved ones were senselessly taken from them, to the survivors who will forever grapple with what they endured that day, to the first responders who had to witness what none of us even want to think about, and to everyone throughout our communities as we struggle to find our footing again in the aftermath of this tragedy.

But, it is also with a renewed sense of purpose that we remain, more determined than ever, to continue our long-standing commitment of working to end the violence.

As the area's sole expert provider of domestic and sexual violence victim services, we are keenly aware of the fact that the very first murder committed on that horrible day was a domestic violence homicide—a son shot and killed his mother. Just a week or so before this event, a man shot and killed his wife in New Fairfield. Every day and night, our hotlines ring and our responding certified staff and volunteers listen to account after account of frightening, often unspeakable domestic and sexual violence crimes being perpetrated on adults and children who live within our communities.



Jan 23, 2013


Man who rescued officer in 1994 Northridge quake to be honored by LAPD 19 years later

by City News Service

LOS ANGELES - Nineteen years after the 1994 Northridge earthquake, the Los Angeles Police Department today will honor a man who helped rescue a police officer trapped in his apartment after the temblor.

Michael Kubeisy, 53, will be honored at the Police Commission meeting for his bravery in the immediate aftermath of the quake, which struck at 4:31 a.m. Jan. 17, 1994, killing nearly 60 people, injuring thousands and causing around $20 billion in damage.

Kubeisy, now a still photographer for the CBS television show "NCIS," rushed to help neighbors in his approximately 150-unit, three-story Northridge apartment building, the first floor of which partially collapsed.

After bridging a nearly three-foot crevice that opened up in his own apartment, Kubeisy first assisted an elderly neighbor down a chain ladder, then moved to the door of LAPD officer Joseph Jordan and his wife, he said. The door was sealed shut, but Kubeisy could hear Jordan and his wife were OK.



Fight Leads to Gunfire on Texas College Campus

Luis Resendiz hid quietly in a small room with dozens of classmates after gunshots erupted in a courtyard on his college campus north of Houston.

There his mind quickly drifted to last month's Connecticut elementary school massacre that left 20 children dead, wondering if another gunman was on a rampage on the other side of the door.

"I didn't think something like this could happen," said Resendiz, 22, who crouched in the room for about 20 minutes before being allowed to leave. "You don't think about it happening to you."

A volley of gunshots about noon Tuesday at Lone Star College prompted a lockdown and eventual evacuation of the campus in north Houston. In the end, three people were hospitalized, including a maintenance worker caught in the crossfire and two others who authorities believe were involved in the gunfire.

Late Tuesday, Harris County sheriff's officials said Carlton Berry, 22, had been charged with aggravated assault in the shooting. Berry remained hospitalized, the officials said. The conditions of the other person involved in the shooting and maintenance worker were not available.



Ohio woman sues FBI, airline for racial profiling

Niraj Warikoo A half-Jewish, half-Arab woman was removed from a plane with two others on 10th anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks.

DETROIT -- A 36-year-old Ohio woman, who is half-Jewish and half-Arab, filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the FBI and other federal agencies, saying she was yanked off an airplane at Metro Airport in Detroit on the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, strip-searched, and jailed more than four hours in a dirty cell because of her ethnic background.

The ACLU filed the lawsuit Tuesday in Detroit on behalf of Shoshana Hebshi, of Sylvania, Ohio, who was on a Frontier Airlines flight that landed in Detroit on Sept. 11, 2011. She and two Indian-American men sitting in her row were targeted by federal agents who entered the plane, ordered them off the plane, handcuffed them, and pushed them down the stairs into vehicles, Hebshi said.

She was then placed in a cell, where she was ordered to strip naked, squat, and cough while an officer looked at her.

Hebshi said she was terrified. "I was frightened and humiliated," said Hebshi, a freelance journalist and mother of 7-year-old twins. "As an American citizen and a mom, I'm really concerned about my children growing up in a country where your skin color and your name can put your freedom and liberty at risk at any time."



New Mexico

Massacre Suspect Nehemiah Griego's Family: Teen Was 'Bright, Curious,' but 'Troubled'

Relatives of a New Mexico teenager accused of killing his mother, father and younger siblings with an assault rifle, then telling police he hoped to shoot up a Walmart, are described as stunned by his actions and "heartbroken over this senseless tragedy."

Though surviving relatives conceded in an unsigned "family statement" that 15-year-old Nehemiah Griego is a "troubled young man," the statement also described him as an outgoing boy who loved music and hoped one day to serve in the military.

"We know him as a bright, curious and incredibly talented young man. He was a brother, nephew, grandson and cousin," said the statement, obtained by the ABC News affiliate KOAT in Albuquerque from former New Mexico state Sen. Eric Griego, the suspect's uncle.

"We are deeply concerned about the portrayal in some media of Nehemiah as some kind of a monster," said the statement. "It is clear to those of us who know and love him that something went terribly wrong. Whether it was a mental breakdown or some deeper undiagnosed psychological issue, we can't be sure yet. What we do know is that none of us, even in our wildest nightmare, could have imagined that he could do something like this."



Jan 22, 2013



California death penalty: Will state follow Arizona, which has resumed executions after a long hiatus?

When Arizona prison officials injected condemned rapist and murderer Richard Stokley with a single, fatal drug dose last month, it marked the state's sixth execution of the year in the nation's second busiest death chamber.

Now that California voters in November narrowly preserved the death penalty, Arizona's path could foreshadow the future for this state, where not a single one of the 729 death row inmates have marched to execution in seven years.

As in California, interminable legal tangles once shut down Arizona's death penalty system as the state executed only one inmate, who volunteered to die, from 2001 to 2010. But Arizona emerged from numerous court battles that removed all of the legal roadblocks that remain in California.

The result has been 11 executions since October 2010, nearly the number California has carried out since it restored the death penalty in 1978. Significantly, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, often the last word for death penalty appeals in the Western states, has not intervened.

Now, legal challenges holding up California's executions are expected to resume this year. "I do think eventually the cases all come to an end," said Dale Baich, who heads a unit representing Arizona death row inmates. "But (in California) it might be later than sooner."



Algerian hostage crisis: 3 Americans among the dead

WASHINGTON (AP) - Three U.S. citizens were killed in last week's hostage standoff at a natural gas complex in Algeria, while seven Americans made it out safely, Obama administration officials said Monday.

The State Department confirmed that gas workers Victor Lynn Lovelady of Houston, Texas, and Gordon Lee Rowan were killed at the Ain Amenas field in the Sahara. U.S. officials identified Texas resident Frederick Buttaccio as the first death last week.

"I'm glad we were able to get some rescued, but we did lose three Americans," Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said as he was leaving the Capitol, where he attended President Barack Obama's second inauguration. "That just tells us that al-Qaida is committed to creating terror wherever they are and we've got to fight back."

A Colorado man survived the hostage crisis by hiding from the terrorists for 2 ½ days before escaping to a nearby Algerian military base.

Steven Wysocki of Ebert, Colo., worked as a production supervisor at the natural gas field. His wife, Kristi, told ABC World News Monday that, at times, the terrorists were only a few feet from where her husband was hiding. She said she felt that her husband "made it to hell and back."




Ohio plans training in cold-case murders

WEST CHESTER, Ohio (AP) — The state of Ohio is beginning its first training session for law enforcement officers working on cold-case homicides.

The state Bureau of Criminal Investigation hosts the Unsolved Homicide Investigative Strategies and Resources course Tuesday in the Cincinnati suburb of West Chester.

It's the first of several regional courses planned throughout the state.

Detectives will be trained on aspects of cold-case investigations, including unsolved homicide methodology, initial assessment and protocol.

A review panel will also look at evidence in a number of open homicide cases and make recommendations.




Community reacts to "community policing"

BRADENTON - Police around the Suncoast often say a challenge they face is forming meaningful relationships within communities hit hard by crime. People ABC 7 spoke with Monday say there's often a level of mistrust between communities and police, but that they think there are ways to hopefully forge new relationships.

Not long after a man was gunned down in a Bradenton driveway Sunday night, Akeem Richardson was stopped by police. "They were asking us questions, if we knew any shootings around here, but we told them no," said Richardson.

He says he never has much contact with police, and that if he had a problem, he's not even sure he'd feel comfortable asking them for help. "I don't know," said Richardson, "I think I would but...it's kind of like fifty-fifty."

It's a feeling that's not entirely uncommon among citizens in neighborhoods hit hard by crime.

"I would say they're a little leery of them," said Jennifer Firman, who lives near Sunday night's shooting scene, and says police patrols are normally few and far between. "I would like to see more police presence in this area, because honestly I don't see much unless something's going on."



Jan 21, 2013



Safe streets pledge part of community policing in Southfield

SOUTHFIELD - The City of Southfield Police and Fire Departments have launched the Southfield Safe Streets Pledge, a new, proactive approach to public safety designed to improve upon the traditional concept of responding to 911 calls. The Southfield Safe Streets Pledge will redistribute public safety resources and collaborate with the community to:

Focus on locations with higher numbers of traffic accidents;

Focus on distracted drivers;

Focus on people that are texting while driving;

Focus on drivers that disobey stop signs and traffic signals; and

Focus on speeders in residential neighborhoods and near schools.



A Million Moms Against Gun Violence

An internal alarm has sounded in mothers across the nation. This bell can't be silenced. We were awoken on Dec. 14 by the nightmare images of 6- and 7-year-olds crying and clinging to teachers as they were led from Sandy Hook Elementary School. It was the unthinkable unfolding before our eyes. These were children just like our own: innocent, filled with optimism and brightness, sent off each day to schools like Sandy Hook Elementary.

I, like many American mothers, looked on for decades as gun violence increased and gun laws loosened. I hoped I could make a difference by raising compassionate children. I hoped that the President, our Congress, and our state and local legislators would act to protect us.

But no more. No more dependence on the actions of others; it is our time as mothers to rise up as a collective force and demand action on gun control.

The morning after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School, I founded One Million Moms for Gun Control. In just over a month, we have signed up tens of thousands of members and created nearly 75 chapters in cities across our nation. Much like Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) was started to address the deadly dangers of driving while intoxicated through public education programs and lobbying for stricter state and federal regulations, One Million Moms for Gun Control was born to fight for common sense gun control regulations.