NEWS of the Week - April 29 to May 5, 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.


May 5, 2013


Why Mass Murderers Kill

This is Joan Jerkovich and welcome to my show. We are all very concerned about the bombing in Boston at the Boston Marathon. It got me into thinking about “why”. Some people were talking in the news reports that they were happy that suspect number two was captured alive. Maybe some of the people who were traumatized by this can hear some of the “why”. Why did these two young men decide to pull off this mass murder?

I'm titling this piece “Why Mass Murderers Kill”. The quick and easy answers that I found are usually revenge, envy, or rejection. Let's look a little bit deeper into that and, let me tell you, I've researched a number of scholarly research articles about this and pulled out some facts to share.

One of them came from Knoll, writing in the Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law titled “The Pseudo-Commando Mass Murderer – Part One – The Psychology of Revenge and Obliteration”. This author-researcher is calling this pseudo-commando type of mass murderer, the one who likes to kill in public during the daytime, the ones who do plan their carnage well in advance. They're the ones who show up with a powerful arsenal of weapons. These type of perpetrators have no escape planned and expect to be killed during the incident.

This isn't necessarily true of the bombers that we saw in Boston, but many of these mass murderers; the shooters at Columbine, at Newtown, and even in Aurora oftentimes not only commit the murders but then commit suicide.



May 4, 2013


New Jersey

Woman is first on FBI terrorist wanted list

The FBI announced it has made Joanne Chesimard, a fugitive member of a black militant group convicted of murdering a New Jersey state trooper in 1973, the first woman on its list of most-wanted terrorists.

Also, the reward for the capture and return of Chesimard, now living in Cuba as Assata Shakur, was doubled to $2 million Thursday, the 40th anniversary of the bloody gun battle.

The Justice Department has offered a $1 million reward for information leading to her capture. The additional money is being put up by New Jersey, state Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa said.

Chesimard, a member of the violent Black Liberation Army, was convicted of the 1973 murder of state trooper Werner Foerster during a traffic stop. The BLA was responsible for killing more than a dozen police officers in the 1970s and '80s, an FBI official said.




Methuen teen's neighbors: Cameron is normal, quiet kid

(NECN: Scot Yount, Lawrence, Mass.) – Eighteen-year-old Cameron D'Ambrosia is being held without bail after posting a tirade on Facebook threatening to quote go insane. He allegedly referred to the Boston Bombing followed by ‘wait till you see the (expletive) I do.'

The Methuen High School teen was arrested Wednesday after some classmates reported the posting to school officials and held on a million dollars bail.

"To make a threat and use what occurred in Boston to enhance your threat is extremely alarming to us and raises the level to whether or not that is going to occur immediately," said Joe Solomon, Chief of Methuen Police.

"I knew Cameron as a quiet kid you know," said Steven Cuevas, a neighbor.

D'Ambrosia lives in this home with his family according to court documents, but nobody answered the door. The documents say police removed a laptop and XBox during a search.




Holyoke police to increase volunteering at Boys and Girls Club, resurrect Police Athletic League

Police Officer Brendan Boyle figures young people who play dodgeball or go hiking with police officers are more likely to see them as friends than foes.

Boyle was part of an announcement Thursday that a dozen officers will volunteer every third Wednesday at the Holyoke Boys and Girls Club.

The idea is the community would benefit if more such associations or even friendships are formed, he said.

"Often we have to go to these calls and deal with these children, and it's not always in a positive light," said Boyle, 38.

"It's just an environment where they don't feel threatened. We're just trying to create an environment where they feel safe and can enjoy themselves," he said.



May 3, 2013


New Jersey

Madison police invite public on a 'Tweet Along'

MADISON — Police invite people to experience life as a police officer in the borough by taking a “Tweet Along,” the 21st-century version of a ride along.

Follow two officers starting at 2 p.m. Friday, May 3, and ending at 2 a.m. on Saturday, May 4. Sergeant Steve Carpenter will give Twitter followers a virtual ride on the day tour and Patrolman Luis Goncalves will continue on the night tour.

Learn what the officers do minute-by-minute throughout the afternoon and into the night and what type of calls they field.

Patrolman Chad Rybka will handle the Twitter feed and answer questions from followers during the 12-hour program. He'll also be dispensing crime prevention tips.

Followers will also get an inside look at the Public Safety Complex.




Don't saddle county with inadequate jail, courthouse

People across the political spectrum agree that racial disparities in our criminal justice system are at crisis proportions and have been for some time, both nationally and locally. I also believe opposition to the justice center bond issue is the least effective way to address those concerns.

In the spring of 2010, the Consultation of Religious Communities made issues related to race and law enforcement a priority. This initiative gave rise to a broad-based network called the Coalition for Racial Justice that's working to address racial disparities in the criminal justice system, education and in access to affordable housing. Not coincidentally, many of the people involved in these ongoing efforts also support the proposed justice center.

The coalition includes people from nonprofit agencies and faith communities, elected officials, public employees, UI and concerned citizens. The coalition frequently has advocated with the Iowa City mayor, city manager, police chief, Housing Authority staff, human rights commissioner and Iowa City Community School District staff and board members.

The coalition lobbied the Iowa City Council to establish the Ad Hoc Diversity Committee to look at the needs of our minority communities in relation to the Iowa City Police Department and public transportation. That committee made a comprehensive report to the council in March. Unfortunately, the report's recommendations regarding the police were not well covered by the media.



Three Men Arrested in Connection with Boston Marathon Bombing Investigation

Three men were arrested and charged today in connection with the Boston Marathon bombings investigation.

Dias Kadyrbayev, 19, and Azamat Tazhayakov, 19, both of New Bedford, Mass., were charged in a criminal complaint with conspiracy to obstruct justice by conspiring to destroy, conceal and cover-up tangible objects belonging to suspected Marathon bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, namely a laptop computer and backpack containing fireworks. A third man, Robel Phillipos, 19, of Cambridge, Mass., was charged with willfully making materially false statements to federal law enforcement officials during a terrorism investigation. According to the affidavit accompanying the complaint, Kadyrbayev and Tazhayakov are both nationals of Kazakhstan who entered the United States on student visas. Kadyrbayev and Tazhayakov face a maximum sentence of five years in prison and $250,000 fine. Phillipos, a U.S. citizen, faces a maximum sentence of eight years in prison and a $250,000 fine.



May 2, 2013


Illegal border crossings rise in South Texas as Congress debates immigration reform

(CBS News) A few thousand protesters hit the streets in Los Angles Wednesday to demand citizenship for illegal immigrants. The protesters hope to influence Congress, which is working on comprehensive immigration reform.

In a new CBS News/New York Times poll, we asked how many favor a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants if they meet certain conditions, including a waiting period.

In favor were 83 percent. Fourteen percent opposed. In Texas, just the debate itself is drawing new immigrants over the border. Juan Mercado lives on border property his family has owned since the 1850s. Immigrants often sneak across there. But since January, the number has tripled.

"I'm being invaded by people who have no permission to be on my property," Mercado said. "By smugglers, by illegals."




Congressional Delegation notifies state and local law enforcement of federal grant opportunities
COPS grants assist state and local law enforcement agencies with staffing and training needs

WILMINGTON — U.S. Senators Tom Carper and Chris Coons, and U.S. Congressman John Carney notified Delaware's state and local law enforcement agencies of two federal grant opportunities available through the Department of Justice's Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Program. The two grant programs now in an open application period include the COPS Hiring Program (CHP) and the Community Policing Development Program (CPD). CHP applications must be submitted before 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 22. The deadline for CPD applications is 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 24.

“Last month's tragic events in Boston remind us of just how important state and local law enforcement is for our communities,” said Senator Carper. “The COPS programs can help Delaware's state and local law enforcement agencies hire more police officers to keep our communities safe and prevent dangerous crimes. I encourage any police department in the First State looking to boost the capacity of their force to apply for these helpful federal grants.”

“As the tragic events in Boston unfolded last month, our country witnessed the critical role police officers have at containing a disaster and apprehending the criminal,” Senator Coons, chair of the Senate Law Enforcement Caucus, said. “Every day our officers put their lives on the line to protect our communities from danger. It's funding like the COPS Hiring Program that ensures our police departments are adequately staffed and have the resources they need to hire and retain officers. I hope police departments across Delaware will apply for this important grant program that will help keep our neighborhoods safe.”



May 1, 2013


North Carolina


A Muslim, like many, who's making his community better

We have been inundated recently with news of the bombers as they carried out their horrific acts of terror at last month's Boston Marathon. The accused brothers' histories, background and upbringing have all been uncovered in just a short time.

As Muslims, when we hear about these dastardly and cowardly actions, we are reminded what our faith teaches us about appreciating every human being that God has created, and valuing that life. Masjid Ash-Shaheed, as many other Muslim houses of worship, has always moved expeditiously to condemn these types of crazy, insane acts. We abhor when those claiming to be of our Islamic faith commit such atrocities.

In contrast, our hearts are warmed when we learn about a local recognition of a Muslim that holds up those Islamic values of protecting human life. Our brother Warith Muhammad, an officer in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, was honored last month for exemplifying outstanding community policing leadership qualities and addressing quality of life issues at the community/neighborhood level.

This is an annual award named after retired Sergeant Donnie Hagler, a pioneer of community policing in Charlotte and given by the Burnette-Nobles foundation created to honor two officers slain in 1993 for which the foundation is named..




Woman suspected of tainting at Starbucks said to be trained chemist

A woman arrested after she allegedly tried to sneak tainted bottles of orange juice into a refrigerator at a Starbucks coffee shop in San Jose was a trained chemist, officials said.

A customer reported seeing the woman remove two bottles of orange juice from her purse and place them in a refrigerated display case at the store, the Mercury News reported.

When the customer alerted store staff the woman fled. After examining the bottles and detecting what they described as a “toxic smell,” store employees called 911.

Police tracked 50-year-old Ramineh Behbehanian to her home about five miles away after a witness provided her license plate number. She was arrested on suspicion of felony poisoning.



April 30, 2013



How to Pay for Police Protection When Your Community Eliminates its Police Force

Like most places in Pennsylvania, Berks County is feeling the pinch of a bad economy. Reading's economic struggles remain even though we have made great strides by working together on public safety and economic development. Unemployment continues to be too high everywhere. Crime is also rising in our hometowns.

Not surprisingly, the rise in crime is happening as our smaller communities are folding their police departments because they can no longer afford to uniform law enforcers. Instead of providing local police patrols, places like Maxatawny, Longswamp and my township, Ruscombmanor, are turning to the Pennsylvania State Police to provide coverage.

Fewer police departments mean fewer full-time police officers, limited crime prevention efforts, and a less-than-usual response to crime of all sorts. That's an invitation for crooks.

Using state police to protect us is not a bad way to go if you don't consider how much more it costs state police every time a municipality turns to it for help.




Grant funds will buy policing, security cameras

OCEANSIDE — The Oceanside Police Department was awarded $272,000 in Citizens' Option for Public Safety, or COPS, grant funds that City Council approved receiving April 17.

These noncompetitive state grant funds are awarded to California cities based on their population.

Like most government funds, COPS grant dollar amounts have declined over the past few years. Still, funds received make a positive impact by paying for additional community policing and purchasing essential equipment.

The grant money is doled out in quarterly payments with the final amount subject to adjustment based in part on state revenue from vehicle funds.

Last year the city was initially awarded $300,000, but the final amount was reduced to about $272,000. As a result a couple of projects listed on last year's grant application could not be funded.




Menlo Park's police chief calls for use of Tasers and surveillance cameras

Menlo Parks' new police chief says he'd like to arm his officers with Taser stun guns and install security cameras and license plate readers at the city's main entrance points.

Chief Robert Jonsen, who joined the city in February, cited Tiburon as an example of what he'd like to see in Menlo Park. In 2010 the North Bay town installed cameras that take pictures of license plates of vehicles that enter and exit its borders.

"If criminals knew that everybody that went into the city, no matter where ... that their license would be captured, I think it would be well protected," Jonsen said.

The Menlo Park City Council tonight is scheduled to receive a report on the city's police department prepared by public safety consultants Belcher, Ehle, Medina & Associates. The $25,282 organizational review was contracted by the city in November while it was searching for a new police chief, according to Assistant City Manager Starla Robinson.

The Santa Cruz-based firm found that the Menlo Park Police Department is meeting "what is considered Best Practices" in most areas, according to the firms's report, which also states that "No systemic issues of corruption, malfeasance or other inappropriate conduct were uncovered during the review.".



April 29, 2013


Last Pieces of 1 World Trade Center Are Rising

One World Trade Center already is New York's tallest building. And when the last pieces of its spire rise to the roof — weather permitting — the 104-floor skyscraper that replaces the fallen twin towers will be just feet from becoming the highest in the Western Hemisphere.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey says the spire pieces plus a steel beacon will then be lifted at a later date from the rooftop to cap the building at 1,776 feet.

Installation of the 800-ton, 408-foot spire began in December, after 18 pieces were shipped from Canada and New Jersey. The spire will serve as a world-class broadcast antenna.

With the beacon at its peak to ward off aircraft, the spire will provide public transmission services for television and radio broadcast channels that were destroyed on Sept. 11, 2001, along with the trade center towers..



New Jersey

Police to Host Emergency Preparedness Seminar

Representatives from several township agencies will be on hand

The Teaneck Police Department's Community Policing Squad will host a seminar on preparing for emergencies next week. The public event is planned for May 9 at 7 p.m. at police headquarters.

"This will be the second offering of the seminar which will include various topics such as emergency communications and utility emergencies," a police department announcement said. "In attendance will be representatives of the Teaneck Police Department, the Teaneck Fire Department and the Teaneck Office of Emergency Management."

The Police Department's Community Policing unit has hosted several similar events in an effort to education residents ahead of major incidents. Anyone with questions can call police at 201-837-2600



From the Department of Homeland Security

DHS at 10: The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center

The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center's (FLETC) mission is to “train those who protect our homeland.” To carry out this mission, the FLETC serves as an interagency law enforcement training organization for 91 federal agencies or partner organizations. Throughout 2013, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is commemorating its tenth anniversary by recognizing key initiatives and employees who have contributed to successes while considering new and innovate ways to achieve its mission. In recognition of this important milestone, leaders from across the Department will be discussing the work they've done over the previous decade as well as their current efforts and plans for the future.

Building on these engagements, I recently answered questions about the past, present and future of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center. The men and women of FLETC look forward to continuing our service and mission to provide fast, flexible and focused training to secure and protect America.