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Police State in Santa Cruz

We live in a police state when you can be arrested for speaking your mind!

Accused of being drunk in public, I was abducted from my friends on 10/29/04 and was refused a breathalyzer test.

I had committed no crime. Caring about another human being while they are suffering becomes a crime only when you live in a police state. (read more...)

Mike commented: "I need to meet whoever wrote this article. Today nov 3rd on the corner of pacific and elm street i was punched, tackled, and shoved to the concrete by 3 police because i refused to sit down. If this is the treatment america poses in there oun country i can't even imagine what we do to others. I'm going to find some pictures of this incident since my head is hurting me and my nose is still bleeding. There were 2 people taking pics as the police were beating me."

[ Homeless United for Friendship and Freedom I Santa Cruz Copwatch ]

It was Friday night, October 29th. My friends and I had just finished celebrating my birthday, when about 5 speeding cop cars raced by us, with their sirens on, on Laurel and Front St. We decided to follow them, because it seemed like there was an emergency.

Unfortunately, when we arrived at the scene, on Spruce and Pacific St, at the same apartment complex where a man had been senselessly shot in the head and killed a month earlier, the police were arresting and taking away a hysterical Latina woman. The pigs had the whole street secured. This woman was begging for the pigs to let her go, claiming that she had done nothing wrong. Her mother and other family were trying to explain to the pigs that the woman's boyfriend had broken their window, and that they should arrest him and not her! But of course the pigs target mentally unstable people, whether they are guilty of a crime or not.

As I listened to this woman and her family, I began to become very concerned for her safety. So two of my friends and I decided to stay as to try to prevent the pigs from hurting her even more. I told the pigs that they are wasting our money, since it shouldn't take seven of them to handle this situation. I also told them that I think they're are disgusting for treating this woman the way they are, and for not caring that another human being is suffering. They blatantly said they didn't care, and obviously didn't like what I was saying. They just kept trying to criminalize this poor woman.

When my friends said to me that they were going to tell our other friend he could leave, since he had been waiting in his car this whole time, that's when the pig saw our weakness and went for it. As soon as my friends were out of sight, P.O. Parker got in my face and said I was drunk. I explained to him that I wasn't and that I was over 21, but he said I was intoxicated in public, grabbed me and cuffed me. When they were driving me away, I noticed a strange man, about my age, staring at me in the car from outside. I actually thought he was a concerned citizen, but later when he casually came into the jail with the other pigs, I found out from another girl my holding cell that he was a civilian ride-along i.e. an undercover snitch.

When my friends came back from letting our other friend know he could leave, less than five minutes had passed and I was no where to be found. They asked the remaining pigs what had happened to me, but they wouldn't tell them anything! And even the undercover snitch looked them in the face and said he didn't know.

The apartment complex where the woman was taken from is predominantly Latino, and has already experienced enough trauma from the murder a month ago. It makes me sick to think how the state criminalizes Latino people.

The state is out to control people, if anyone steps out of line, they’ll come after you, and there isn’t a thing that your family or friends can do about it.

We’re living in a police state, yes, even in yuppie Santa Cruz!!!

 
 


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Comments

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I need to meet whoever wrote this article. Today nov 3rd on the corner of pacific and elm street i was punched, tackled, and shoved to the concrete by 3 police because i refused to sit down. If this is the treatment america poses in there oun country i can't even imagine what we do to others. I'm going to find some pictures of this incident since my head is hurting me and my nose is still bleeding. There were 2 people taking pics as the police were beating me.

Please respond.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I'm happy to hear at least some people were willing to bear witness to this violence, and let the police know some people do care and want different policies.

And as a shameless plug I hope more poeple will observe the police interacting with the public and start thinking about how we can organize alternatives to resolve disputes we have without the police. (Copwatch trainings November 6, 12pm in Watsonville main plaza and November 20, 12pmSanta Cruz Resource Center for Non-Violence)
 

Police State, my ass

You are ignorant.

So let's recap this story, you just had a birthday party, and you are over 21. (I guess you ate cake and drank kool-aid since you weren't drunk) You and your friends had nothing better to do than be nosy and follow police to an unknown, possibly hostile situation. Then when you get there, you have no idea what is going on. You see that she is being arrested. You do not know if she has committed a criminal act or not. You dont even know if she's being charged with anything. She may have been taken into custody or transported to a mental health center. Yet, your favorite rap videos and Rodney King come into your mind, and you automatically start interfering and running your cock holster about something you have no information on. Then you go on to embarass yourself farther and say to the officers they were wasting money because it didnt take that many officers. You do not know that woman's history or the history of every neighbor. Obviously we need more officers than needed because their is always an idiot like you with a chip on his shoulder who wants to show up and make a spectacle of yourself. You should have gotten a Disorderly Conduct charge in addition to your PI. Grow up and shut up. You make me sick.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Disorderly conduct or interfering with an arrest probably would have been easier to prove. Public drunkedness is supposed to only apply if the person is falling down drunk, possibly into traffic or preventing others from using the sidewalk.

A police scanner or just going up and asking (once the situation appears to be under control) is a good way to find out what is going on if you are curious. It is always good to explain what you are doing to the person being arrested to make them feel more comfortable.

A video camera or tape recorder can be a good way to document if you were out of line, public observation should always be allowed in my opinion (especially if the person being detained/arrested desires it).
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

the OP did nothing wrong. They didn't interfere with the investigation. It's not a crime to follow the police or document their activities. It sounds as though the police went after this guy because they simply didn't like him- that sounds to me like selective enforcement of the law. You're a jackass, and you make ME sick.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Dear lord, who can take that seriously? It'd be nice if this site was taken seriously - looks like some loser who doesn't like the fact that they aren't above the law, considering how the article as written.

"And as a shameless plug I hope more poeple will observe the police interacting with the public and start thinking about how we can organize alternatives to resolve disputes we have without the police."

Next time I'm being mugged, I'll try it out...
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

"n5667" Have the police ever taken it seriously when you were mugged? They never have with me, unless they were doing the mugging.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I have been robbed before and don't think the police are in a position to be particularly helpful. Police only respond during or close to the time a crime occurs a very small percent of the time. And once you have been robbed what evidence do you have? Probably just one word against the other. (Maybe increased video surveillance will change this.)

Most property is not registered in any way, and why should the other person be subject to a search just at my appearant whim if it is. Would there be repercussions to me if they already disposed the property I'm accusing them of having? Even with a few witnesses doesn't prove beyond a reasonable doubt in my mind.

Sure our society is sometimes willing to take the word of a more upstanding member of society or the police over anyone else, but I don't think this is the system of being willing to let many getting people go free rather than imprison one innocent person our legal system claims to be.

I think it would take pretty dramatic societal and economic changes to eliminate most muggings.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Another good example is the state of helplessness you will find yourself in for a stolen bike (unless you know of one venue where most stolen bikes are sold, like the flea market in Berkeley).

And I don't really know of a better solution. Maybe getting to know more of the people around you.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

As for this officer, if he really is one, he is well aware of the illegal types of police intimidation the police use against those doing cop watches, including the wrongful use of disorderly conduct charges, as well as the illegal violence the police often use against the public. You mock this guy for saying he was not drunk, but he may not have been. So tell me why, if this guy was drunk, was he not given an alcohol test. Sounds like harassment to me. It is not illegal to watch the cops and it is not illegal to speak your mind.
 

Don't make assumptions

Nowhere does the original poster indicate they are male, female or transgender.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Woo hoo... I think my posts were gendered pronoun free :-)

I do take this site seriously and hope others do to. I appreciate the questioning and discussion of ideas. I think it is a good way to learn consequently making our viewpoints stronger and more thought out.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

It is open-publishing. Which means that the site is ruled by who is willing to make the most noise. It is definitely possible for open publishing to harbor a certain slant or repress certain views if most of the posters or at least a few persistent trolls make posts causing other posters to feel not welcomed.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

But at least anyone capable of viewing the site is capable of posting their own stories/comments which is something at least. Even if they are shot down in some way by everyone else. Avoiding repressiveness is definitely something critics should think about.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

If you are going to make a strong statement like, "Sc-indymedia is politically repressive", you should probably give a reason as to why you think that is.

The Santa Cruz City government sending out its police after certain activists and political activities and after the homeless is repressive. The Sentinel, Metro, and Good Times only printing the money side of the story is stifling. But personally, I don't see how people posting their views, whatever they may be, is oppressive.

Thanks on the gender issue, I actually thought of it after I made the post, but it was too late too change it.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Well, unless you guys want a true police state, the police will generally always be reactive, not pro-active. My simple point is that most times the police get involved is because odds are no amicable solution can be met by the two parties...

And I must reiterate, flinging invective around in an article really does not lend any sort of credence or profesionalism to the article at all. Nevermind this article is written by one of the persons involved in the incident.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

n5667 says, "The police will generally always be reactive, not pro-active."

This has not been my experience.

The police in Santa Cruz, and many other cities as well, will at go out of their way to go after certain activists in particular and extremely poor (houseless) people as well as working class people of color in general. I find that the police are unpredictable and dangerous towards these groups, quick to carry out false arrests, violence, and theft of property without even the slightest provocation.

Victims of the police would, however, do well to listen to "n5667" when he/she says, "Flinging invective around in an article really does not lend any sort of credence or professionalism to the article at all." While I do understand the feelings, venting anger is less important than being able to communicate with people who have not had the same experiences.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I just noticed that a post Thomas and I responded to was removed from the string. Just so people don't think I'm making things up in a previous post let me just state someone put up a post that simply stated, "SC-Indymedia is politically repressive".
 

ooops

ooops, my bad! I did not mean to remove the post that said, "SC-Indymedia is politically repressive" from this string. That post, "SC-Indymedia is politically repressive" was not only added as a comment to this thread, it was added as a comment to about a dozen different articles earlier this morning. thanks for understanding!
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Why would anyone follow the heat around,(or anyone for that matter), antagonize them, and wonder why they didn't get a positive reaction? That is incredibly stupid. When they do that to you, do they get "good vibes?" The majority of this town, or any town supports police who hassle lawbreaking bums.(It is not legal to live in cars, bushes, or on the street anywhere. If you are not working, doing volunteer work, or looking for work, or are not retired, you are considered a bum.) Have you ever considered that maybe it's you that has to change, and not the cops, or the general public that supports them?! That's reality, how un-politically correct it may sound to your sensitive ears. Most people are working their tails off just trying to get by. Sounds like alot of punks with too much time on their hands, looking to create some drama they can get together and whine about.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

AMEN Big Dog.

And actually Steven Argue seemed to have some sense until he made this comment "I find that the police are unpredictable and dangerous towards these groups, quick to carry out false arrests, violence, and theft of property without even the slightest provocation."

That is flat out b.s. I have been an officer for 3 years, and have yet to see anyone steal or fabricate evidence. Does it ever happen. Sure. Is it a big problem, not at all. I work in a very ghetto area. Of course we are more proactive there because thats where most of the crime is occuring. We try to be proactive as much as possible. That means someone may be asked to step over to the hood of the car for a patdown and warrant check if they are loitering in front of a drug track. A lot of the times we get drugs or a gun. Sometimes we don't. But I dont think that 30 second encounter is a big burden to bear. I know if I lived in that shithole and was hearing shots and gang fights all night and people breaking into my house everytime I go out of town, I would want officers in the area shaking the thugs down. The more officers are out there watching and checking, the less easy it is for the scrotes to have a window of opportunity.

The bottom line is more street level, violent crime occurs in these areas you are talking about. Most homeless here in this city (about 900,000 is our population) are crackheads. What you call Working class is more like Welfare, not looking for a job, class. Sorry to burst your PC bubble but thats the way it is. I hear half-informed liberal activists screaming about how many black men are in prison blah blah blah. Well quite bluntly a larger number of black men are committing crimes. Not that hard of a forumula is it? Maybe you should focus on the factors that produce these ratios, rather than blame police for arresting them. Our job is to reduce & fight crime. Obviously we are going to be doing that more in the areas where it occurs.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Okay-lets get this shit straight!
First of all, I am a woman!! Secondly, I had one and a half beers 2 hours before the arrest. And I was refused a breathalyzer. I wasn't arrested for interferring with the police's jobs, I was arrested for being drunk in public, which I WAS NOT! Therefore, I was illegally arrested! And this could happen to anyone who is not a drone and chooses to speak their mind!
Third, I work full time and I graduated from UCSC with a BA in Environmental Studies. However, I have sympathy for so-called "bums" of society who have had emotional and physical abuse imposed upon them by this so-called "democracy!" Frankly, there aren't jobs out there that are available to everyone or that are much less worthy of people's time and energy.
Mr. "Amused Cop"-you are a typical pig, who automatically assumes that I committed a crime, most likely, you assume that whoever you arrest is a criminal and deserves whatever treatment they get for you. Regardless of whether the accused is innocent or guilty, you've already made up your mind-its called "discrimination!"
I don't think speaking your mind is above the law-its called "Freedom of Speech," in our so-called constitution.
I wasn't following the police around to get a positive reaction. We followed them because we were curious about 5 police cars screeching down the street. We stayed because we were concerned for the safety of the Latina.
The police kill people and plant evidence all the time. The Prison Industrial Complex started after slavery was "abolished." Do you really think it's a coincidence that half of the prison population is African?!?! Of course not! These people have been disenfranchised and in fact, a lot of "white" upper class people committ crimes all the time, infact, they use just as much, if not more, drugs than people of color do. Well quite bluntly a large number of white men are committing crimes!
And this incident was on Spruce and Pacific Street, right behind Saturn Cafe. It was not in some ghetto! Again, just like a typical pig, Mr. Amused Officer is trying to instill fear and use scare tactics to justify violence on us!
No to Violence! There's just no excuse. Police are violence and they are above the law. The Prison Industrial Complex treats people like animals.
If you all remember, Rudy Cardenas was murdered on Feb. 17, 2004, by state agent Michael Walker, in San Jose, in a case of mistaken identity. And guess what?? Walker has been indicted on mandatory manslaughter. There are so many things wrong with the police system and the state. Pigs are above the law. they kill and abuse people all the time and get away with it. They have a heart of stone!!!
But they shouldnt be above the law. violence is wrong in any form!!!
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

POLICE HARASSMENT

This was taken from a "Community Policing" question and answer via an e-mail forum in California.

The question was:

"I would like to know how it is possible for police officer to harass people and get away with it? And where can you go for help, other than a civil attorney?"

And the answer was:

"It is not easy. In California we average one cop for every 2000 people. About 60% of those cops are on patrol, where we do most of the harassing. One-fifth of that 60% are on duty at any moment and available for harassing people. So, one on duty cop is responsible to harass about 10,000 residents. When you toss in the commercial, business, and tourist locations that attract people from other areas, sometimes you have a situation where a single cop is responsible to try to harass 20,000+ people a day.

A ten hour shift runs 36,000 seconds. This gives a cop only one second to harass a person, and three-fourths of a second to eat a donut AND find a new person to harass. This is not an easy task. Most cops are not up to it day in and day out. It is just too tiring.

Since you now understand why we cannot harass everyone let me explain briefly what we do to utilize some special "tools" to help us narrow down who we harass, so we can focus our limited "harassing resources" to those most worthy individuals. They are as follows:

The Phone:
People will call us up and point out things that cause us to focus
on another person for special (concentrated) harassment. "My ex-husband just beat me and my boyfriend up and he is barricaded in the bedroom with our baby and a gun, or "My neighbor is beating up his wife and she is screaming for help" are a couple code phrases that are frequently employed. Then we come out and give special harassment to the wife beater. Another popular one on weekends is "My neighbors are out of town and their kids are having a loud party."

Cars:
We have special cops assigned to harass people who drive; They usually ride motorcycles so they can get around fast or cut through traffic to harass as many people as possible in their given shift. They like to harass the drivers of fast cars, cars blasting music, cars with expired registration tabs, and the like. It is lots of fun when we pick them out of traffic for nothing more obvious then running a red light, going around railroad crossing arms, or driving 20+ MPH over the posted limit in a school zone. Sometimes we get to really heap the harassment on when we find they have drugs in their car, are driving drunk, are unlicensed or have an arrest warrant!
Runners:
Some people take off running at the mere sight of a uniformed police officer. Nothing is quite as satisfying as running after them like a trained
beagle on the scent of a bunny. When we catch them, gosh darn it if there isn't always some good reason to harass them for hours!

Codes:
When we can think of nothing else to do, there are books that give us
ideas for reasons to harass folks. They are called Codes, Penal, Vehicle, Health and Safety, Business and Professions... They each spell out all sorts of silly things for which we can really mess with people. After we study these code books, we can just drive around for a while until we find someone violating one of the listed offenses and heap on the harassment! Just last week I saw a guy smash several car windows right in front of me. Well, believe it or not, one of the code books says that is not allowed. That meant I automatically got to harass this guy...of course he didn't like it, because just when I got done harassing him, the jail deputies harassed him and that will likely continue until the judge harasses him, then he will probably be harassed by a probation officer for the next couple of years. It is a pretty cool system that we have set up, and it works very well most of the time. We seem to have a never ending supply of folks to harass, and we "get away with it" because the good citizens pay the tab for us to keep the streets safe for them...and your civil attorney.

Next time you are in my town, give me a "single finger wave". That is a secret signal that you wish for me to take a closer look at you, and maybe find a reason to harass you.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

LOL Couldn't have said it better myself.
 

My response to Laidlow

Calling me a pig. Real original. If we're going to be childish, can I ask if you have my burrito ready? or my suite cleaned?

PIG = Pride, Integrity, Guts. 3 things you probably don't have. Call me what you want. I love my job and nothing you idiots say to me changes that. In fact it makes me more vigilant.

Your response was so dramatic, ridiculous and over-the-top in your generalizations that I doubt even your fellow police haters can defend you.

But as for your comment:
"...in fact, a lot of "white" upper class people committ crimes all the time, infact, they use just as much, if not more, drugs than people of color do. Well quite bluntly a large number of white men are committing crimes!"

I'm glad you brought that up. I really am. You say more whites are using drugs than people of color. Per capita? I doubt it. I don't know how that could ever be tested though. BUT...the point I want to bring up is this: Yes, I'm sure there are white yuppies in business suits on Wall Street who snort coke. You know what the difference is?? They are not going out acting like uncivilized monkeys by joining gangs, shooting up the neighborhood, carrying AK 47's, robbing liquor stores and fast food joints, hanging out begging for money to support their habit in car washes and liquor store parking lots, etc. Maybe if they kept the shit indoors and not let it pour out into the streets, they wouldnt be arrested as often. THINK
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

The amused officer says "Yes, I'm sure there are white yuppies in business suits on Wall Street who snort coke. You know what the difference is?? They are not going out acting like uncivilized monkeys by joining gangs, shooting up the neighborhood, carrying AK 47's, robbing liquor stores and fast food joints, hanging out begging for money to support their habit in car washes and liquor store parking lots, etc"

No they are the ones who finance criminals Like George W. Bush who just got through using weapons of mass destruction(depleted uranium projectiles with a half life of four billion years) in Iraq which has killed more than 100,000 civilians. He lied about WMDs to get the troops in there. Then he cuts veteran's benefits.

Other white Wall street men in business uniforms sell tobacco which kills more than 400,000 people in the U.S. every year.
They support the worst military dicatorships in the world (like Somoza in Nicaragua and Batista in Cuba). Then when the people rise up and throw off the dicatatorships like the Nicaraguans did, the white men hire and equip an army of terrorist rapists murderers, torturers and drug dealers (the Contras) to destroy the NIcaraguans attempt to build a civil society. Adolph Coors gave a million dollars to support the Contras.

71 percent of corporations in the U.S. paid no taxes (talk about worthless bums).

Other white men in business uniforms on Wall Street work to privatize water in poor countries with the end result that 2.5 billion of the world's population have no steady access to potable water. So the worst criminals in society go scott free most of the time.

The cops protect these rich white criminals and harass everyone else including people who protest these atrocities (like in Seattle where the police rioted out of control against protestors and innocent people just trying to get home from work.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

this so called "officer" along with "big dog" and all the other racist crap on this thread most likely come from one troll. this stuff doesn't even belong on indymedia...it targets non white people and is racist pure and simple.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Big Dog is a friend of mine I've known for decades, and mentions nothing of race in his statement. Talk about putting words in other people mouths. Demonizing people you don't agree with is very immature. It really sounds like a few folks responding here either forgot, or are in need of medication! I know it's hard, but try to stick to the issue. What makes you think anyone here likes corporate corruption/crime/shrub, etc.? Everyone including you is standing on top of the shoulders of this country! You're not exempt from guilt from the sins of this administration any more than anyone else! It's just bullshit rationale to vent/rant, get high, or do nothing, using that as an excuse ...(By the way, You forgot to bring in the indians, as part of your whiney discourse.) Big Dog and I have a combined 117 years in this town, and either of us know anyone who has been harrassed by the police, for no reason. As far as censoring native Santa Cruzans from a conversation about Santa Cruz, who is being intolerant/rude/hostile here? If it weren't for the cops and laws, mouthy transplant punks like you would be in deeper shit than you know!
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I'm a war vet who has been busted five times in this town for fighting, none I started, and none I lost. It's funny how people can be so brave with their mouths, hiding behind a computer, or in their car, and when it comes down they go screaming for the police.Doing some time cured me of settling things that way, unless it is a matter of survival. Bones got busted for assaulting a judge in the 1970s, another example of an arrogant, verbally abusive geek, hiding behind his cloak, running for help.The Boneman paid dearly for that one.A simple lesson for all of us: If you want to change the world in a positive direction, you need to find a positive way to do it.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

"No they are the ones who finance criminals Like George W. Bush who just got through using weapons of mass destruction(depleted uranium projectiles with a half life of four billion years) in Iraq which has killed more than 100,000 civilians. He lied about WMDs to get the troops in there. Then he cuts veteran's benefits."

Officer, I demand you go and arrest that man for giving George W. Bush a campaign contribution!
 

Cops Beat up Kids on Pacific Last Night

My friend was working at Streetlight Records on Pacific Ave last night (Nov. 5, 2004) and witnessed the cops beating the shit out of a bunch of kids right in front of Streetlight Records. It was about 8pm and there was a long line outside the Catylst to see the Cramps. The Catlyst and Streetlight are very close to each other, so there were many people who witnessed this....... First there were foot patrol cops and then numerous police cars showed up and a K9. The cops used night sticks to totally beat the shit out of the 'punk rock kids' and ended up hauling away about 10 bloody kids.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

To the guy who went off the subject of drugs, presumably because he had no retort, I am not a Bush fan or Bush supporter. Id say about half our department is split along the party lines. However, you'd be hard pressed to find any officer who doesn't enjoy footage of you dumba**es getting what you ask for.

And as far as the post about the bloody punk rock kids...Was that before or after the martians landed? lol grow up and tell the truth.
 

Cops Beat up Kids on Pacific Last Night!

what do you mean grow up and tell the truth?

There was 500lbs worth of cops on one kid alone! There were people taking pictures too. Anyone is invited to go down to Streetlight Records and ask the employees what they saw at about 8pm on the night of Nov. 5, 2004.

I want to believe that you being honest here, "Amused Officer still," but it is hard to believe you when you don't believe me, my friend and other employees of Streetlight Records who saw, with their own eyes, numerous cops beating on kids, with their nightsticks, and then hauling them away.

There is no police oversight in this town, besides the work of activists who pass out flyers on the street and record interviews about police brutality and the people that publish their stories here on Santa Cruz Indymedia and on Santa Cruz Copwatch.
 

Increase in Rise of Police Violence Recently

For what it's worth, I'm not unhappy that Big Dog, Bones, and n5667 are making their commentary.

As most readers of this website know, I regularly air street interviews on FRSC Sundays 9:30-1 PM and Thursdays 6-8 PM at www.freakradio.org (apparently being broadcast independently over 101.1 FM as well). Anyone interested is welcome to call in and discuss the subject of police violence (831-427-3772).

I have received reports of four incidents of police violence in the last week--which is unusual. One woman was thrown down to the ground, she reports, near Radio Shack (she admitted she was intoxicated).

I taped and played Lailo's account on Thursday's show (archived at www.santacruzcopwatch.org/robert, for those who want to hear it, though she sums it up nicely in print here).

SCPD reportedly piled on and bloodied one of those who burned a flag near Streetlight Records on November 3rd--according to two reports.

On Halloween evening around 10:30 p.m., according to one man, police pursued and then beat a man with truncheons at Cathcart and Pacific.

If anyone (including the officers involved) has any information about these incidents, please post it here, call in to the show, or go to the santacruzcopwatch website.

I'd like to add that I have not personally been beaten or physically assaulted by police in Santa Cruz County. I have, however, been falsely arrested (recently winning a lawsuit against Sgt. Baker, the City of Santa Cruz, and Matisse Selman of Sushi Now) around a January 2002 bust for political tabling ("blocking the sidewalk").

Police are called on in Santa Cruz to enforce unjust laws that target poor and countercultural people. Unfortunately, it's also true that such laws (such as the Sleeping Ban and the Downtown Ordinances) also originate in the police department, where they are pushed as "tools".

More frightening however, is the apparent increase in reported police violence recently. One can't help but wonder if the Bush victory hasn't encouraged some violence under color of law.
 

CRACKING UP AS WE SPEAK...

If you have not listened to this interview with Laylow, I encourage everyone to listen to this babbling idiot. Its so damn funny

She is like you know like babbling on about nonsense, and then this chick asks the def's family what is going on and to everyone's disbelief she says her daughter didnt do anything!!. Can you believe that?? Its like total bullshit! Ya know what I mean?

Hey Laylow, here's some common sense for you....The def and def's family usually are not the best sources for information!!

Like our dept. the SCPD obviously has a very lenient and liberal policy for dealing with public drunks. A few hours of detox, and thats it! No criminal charge, no court date, nothing. Yet this babbling airhead wants to complain about that. (which is why I would have put a disorderly conduct charge on the ticket as well as P.I. because obviously she didnt appreciate the break).

I love the part where she says she is standing out in the middle of the crossroad and tells the officer to go ahead and write her a ticket....and he does. lol

Im still listening to this as I type....now she's whining about her trial not being speedy enough, but when the host says well thats less time for your lawyers to prepare she says "Oh I didnt..didnt know that...oh gosh...well it just really pisses me off that these men mostly cause I was...ya know...ya know...I was friggin assaulted...you know...you know...these MEN police officers can put their hands on you...and I was not intoxicated, so whats going on now ya know?"

NO Laylow we dont know. LOL

And listen to the guy who had a "Fuck the Pigs" sign out on street. He sounds like he's drunk and cracked out during the interview. LOL Thanks for the laughs guys. And thanks for reassuring me that you cop haters have no legitimacy or argument whatsoever.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Does "Amused Officer" feel that police should be able to arrest anyone watching their activities and hold them for hours in a drunk test without a breathalyzer test?

Does s/he feel that a "fuck the pigs" sign should be the basis for a citation or arrest?

Amused Officer does lots of sneering, but doesn't give straight answers to important questions.

But as a police officer, why be accountable--when you have power?
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Streetlamp, second hand information is rarely credible - and I somehow doubt that cops beating the shit out of a bunch of kids in front of a music store, and next to the Catalyst on a busy Friday night would gain some attention... I'm amazed, there must have been dozens if not hundreds of witnesses, and yet - silence, not even a photograph from a cell phone? Seems rather suspect - but secondhand information usually is.

"Does s/he feel that a "fuck the pigs" sign should be the basis for a citation or arrest?"

Probably not, but honestly, who's going to take a person with a sign like that seriously?
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Mentally ill homeless people are particularly targeted by Santa Cruz PD. They know Dominican hospital won't take these persons without any insurance to pay them, so the cops make up some criminal charge so they can dump them in the jail...out of sight, out of mind, so to speak.
Those types just aren't good for the tourism industry here, ya know?
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

On the weekend of Halloween a lot of individuals from the downtown area where wrongfully arrested for "public intoxication," the police just want to get them off the street. As for breathalyzers, they're not required unless you're operating a motor vehicle. Even if you’re not drunk you’ll still be waiting it out in a holding cell for 6 hours. If you so choose you can later challenge your arrest and have it stricken from your record. With your luck, the cop won’t show up to court, if he doesn’t the charges are automatically dropped.
 

Maurer's Lawsuit Against the City

In response to "n5667" (the courageous poster who isn't afraid to let us know who s/he is) and "Amused Officer" (the nameless blanket defender of the SCPD): I interviewed several who claimed to have been beaten or witnessed beatings by police at Elm and Pacific and will play these accounts next Thursday 6-8 PM on Free Radio.

It takes a lot for a homeless panhandler to put a "fuck the pigs" sign in his hat, as John Maurer did. For more details, check out the indymedia stories under "Muzzling the Poor in Santa Cruz--on the Street and at City Council" from June of 2003.

Maurer is suing the City in Federal Court after all charges were dropped. At least Maurer wasn't beaten up by police for doing a flag burning protest as some reported the day after the Bush victory.

While one can sympathize with wanting to remove obnoxious drunks from the street, it's also clear that the power of police to arrest without charges and without giving a breathalyzer is a two-edged sword that can be abused. Several have claimed such abuse has happened repeatedly in the last week.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

That's what the cops do on nights that are expected to turn out large groups of people, such as a holiday weekend. They simply pick up people at bus stops, or walking down the street, pronounce them intoxicated, and take them to jail.
It is not safe for young people, even sober ones, to walk downtown anywhere at night, but especially not when there are festivities.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Mr Norse, the Poor Man's Paul Harvey, asked "Does s/he feel that a "fuck the pigs" sign should be the basis for a citation or arrest?"

Yeah I do. Im not from Santa Cruz, I came across this initial post while looking for something else. Where I live and work, a city of about 900,000 in the metro area, we have a city ordinance prohibiting lewd or generally offensive behavior. I would have issued this guy a city ordinance if he had ID. If he did not have any ID I'd have been happy to transport him (per policy and common sense, you cant issue a citation/summons to anyone who doesnt have sufficient ID).

As for the guy who said that the Dominican hospital wont accept anyone without the insurance to pay them. Don't just fill in the blanks about things you don't know or understand. There is a hospital in every city that is going to accept someone from police custody. They have to. The billing comes later. Do you honestly think every homeless person, crackhead, mental patient, thug, or any other person the police regularly deal with has insurance? What about when ambulances transport from the scene of a disturbance, accident, shooting, whatever......Most of these people have no insurance and never pay their medical bills. Who does? The taxpayers.
 

Officer Also Amused At First Amendment?

When there are no meaningful official checks on abusive or violent police behavior, it's understandable that sympathizers would like to eliminate any street criticism as well, particularly stuff that might alarm, offend, or inform tourists.

Isn't Amused Officer's primary job is the protection of all our rights (from criminals high and low, in uniform and in civvies)? S/he knows hostility (sometimes unjustified hostility)against the police is a part of the job. It's that officer's responsibility (and a hard one) to maintain a cool and steady attitude, even under fire, isn't it?

Censoring non-violent but harsh public expressions of outrage is particularly bad when it comes from police, armed with guns, organization, and respectability.

Such censorship, of course, would finalize the "lockdown" by outlawing written expressions of protest. Is "Fuck the pigs" is too subversive and too angry?

However offensive the words, they identify and denounce behavior that is far more important and far more offensive, in however primitive a voice.

Such a sign encourages a passerby to stop and ask, "why are you wearing that?" and prompting the kind of dialogue that can lead to reform.

Does "Amused Officer" wants to limit the First Amendment to polite inoffensive expressions of concern? Should anti-choice demonstrators be prohibited from showing pictures of aborted fetuses because others are offended?

Police officers who overestimated their own untouchability unconstitutionally ticketed Maurer. The Maurer case was thrown out by the courts and is now the subject of a civil lawsuit.

Would she Amused Officer threaten, cite, or arrest those who raise written signs protesting police beatings--such as the reported November 3rd flagburning beating at Pacific and Elm in Santa Cruz--if they use obscenities to describe obscenities?

The real problem is that folks like Amused Officer have the power to do this unchecked.

It's easy to sneer and scoff from the anonymous safety of an out-of-city sanctuaries when it's not your son or mother or friend is getting vindictively hauled off to the drunk tank because they dared to copwatch.

The Police Auditor's Santa Cruz phone number is 831-420-6295. Make him earn his 40 grand a year with a little independent investigating of some of these complaints. He should be in his office sometime today at Cedar and Locust in the old CPRB office at 915 Cedar St. (At last word, he comes to Santa Cruz 2nd and 4th Mondays per month for several hours.)

Even after the Maurer case was dismissed,at least one Santa Cruz police officer threatened a man holding a sign with the word "fuck" in it.

Either this is bad training on the part of superiors or a continuing "fuck the Constitution" attitude of some police.

In any case we need more copwatchers (go to www.santacruzcopwatch.org) and more reports and dialogue like this.
 

A few questions.

1. "Fuck the pigs" is an expression of outrage against police misconduct [in Maurer's case against specific misconduct, see "Muzzling the Poor in Santa Cruz--on the Street and at City Council" June '03].It should be constitutionally protected (but not in Amused Officer's town, apparently). It's not lewd. The behavior that it refers to is far more offensive and is a matter of public concern to many of us. In the last year at least one officer ignored the Maurer decision and threatened someone with a sign which included the word "fuck". Has this happened to anyone else?

2. Amused Officer is right in suggesting that Dominican Hospital should under law be accepting people without insurance in emergency cases. I have heard it has failed to meet this standard. What actual experiences have others had regarding this?

3. If you have been arrested when you were not drunk and hauled off to the drunk tank, please write about this experience. Particularly if you demanded a breathalayzer and were unreasonably denied it.

4. Is my impression about an upsurge of police violence in the last week supported by the experience of anyone else? Please post and/or call in to my radio show to discuss.

Thanks to everyone for continuing this dialogue--even harsh critics like Amused Officer.
 

That's not amusing, that's tragic.

Dear Amused Officer,
Even though I wasn't an eyewitness I can surmise the nature of the event - having seen so many like it go down in the 20 years I've been here. Since that time I've watched Santa Cruz turn from a bohemian hamlet (where city policy allowed the police to tolerate homelessness and marijuana use in public places to one that is increasingly ruled by a self-serving and intolerant legislature of "hippie-crits" who have met little resistance to enacting laws for the purpose of removing the "unsavory" elements in town which might jeopardize tourist dollars or the real estate market. And let's not forget the same sentiment contained in state legislative action like Proposition 13 which resulted in the mentally ill literally being thrown out on the street. All of these measures, coupled with the proliferation of guns and hard drugs like crack and speed, have put an incredible pressure on the police to deal with its consequences. Having seen so many drug-induced incidents of violence which usually cause the police to be brought to the scene I find it hard to stomach all of the misplaced hatred for an under-funded and over-burdened police force (the vast majority of which ARE GOOD, CARING PEOPLE) when most of you have never been shot at or punched by a crazed lunatic just because a neighbor called you over to help quell a violent incident.

What I find amusing is how a well-intentioned officer (why else would he take the time to explain his actions in this forum?) can hope to change the minds of such a mis-informed, close-minded population who have never had to sully their hands attempting to clean up the mess that such an intolerant government has helped to perpetuate.

What I find tragic is how our younger residents can feel entitled to rail against the police for carrying out the marching orders of local and state governments while remaining ignorant and complacent in the face of money-driven policies which put the interests of the wealthy before those less influential in the political arena. And now that the younger generation has proven themselves so completely inept at bringing about any significant change in government policy you can bet the police are going to get more of the same kind of marching orders.

My brother was mentally ill and homeless in this town for years, and while his many encounters with the police were not always pleasant, he speaks of them with a great deal of respect after the tolerance they showed toward him despite his penchant for violence and vandalism. But all of that seems to be lost on a younger generation so enamored with the hate-mantra of gansta rap and a TV diet that glorifies anarchy at all costs. If you really want to get respect, kid, save your "fuck you" for the government wankers who get away with enacting those ridiculous ordinances that make the cops do what they're demanded to do. Meanwhile, show some respect (and tolerance) for the guy who might just be called in to save your life the next time one of your gansta heroes decides to turn the gun on you.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Night Owl's comments were excellent. I'm sure that Norse is having a difficult time trying to invent statistics and fabricate lies to refute this commentary.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I have power to do things unchecked? I didn't know that. Mr. Norse would you please write a letter to our Internal Affairs Bureau and let them know that I have power to do things unchecked and not to take any more unwarranted, ridiculous, and unsubstantiated complaints?

Night Owl, I do know Im not going to change their minds, I just like throwing their b.s. back in their face.

The problem with the homeless here is, they often go into abandoned houses and smoke crack, have sex and vandalize the house, leaving a mess and quite an expense for the person who owns it. Ive taken 3 vandalism reports on the same house in the last month because the owners are trying to fix it up, and everytime they put in a fixture or cabinets or appliance, some crackhead or homeless person breaks in and steals it.

Incidentally, regarding mental patients, our dept started a C.I.T. (Crisis Intervention Team) which has been used for the model in many departments across the nation and has won several awards from the mental health industry. Officers who want to be a C.I.T. officer, go to a weeks worth of training, where they go and visit the mental health facilities in the area, are lectured my mental health physicians, are given and receive training on non lethal ammunition such as the SL-6, and a cannister of OC foam. Any calls involving or at a residence where a mental patient is known to live at, the CIT oficer has to make the scene first. Often they will rendezvous with their partner at a different location and make the scene at the same time. The C.I.T. officer then is in charge of the scene and is the one to approach and talk to the subject. If the subject meets the criteria for emergency committment they are transported to the Med. We have ride-alongs from officers all over the country to see how the program works.

Speaking of ride-alongs, I have to go back to my favorite moron, Laylow. Anyone notice in her first initial post her quote..."a civilian ride-along...i/e undercover snitch" LOL

Sorry honey, as any other officer on here will tell you, UNDERCOVER snitches, don't ride with us in the patrol car. Where in the hell did you get that? Ride-alongs typically are officers from another jurisdiction, a person applying or thinking about applying as an officer, a police explorer, someone going through the citizens police academy, or a reporter/journalist. A snitch wouldn't last long or be very effective if they were cruising around with us now would they??? Keep up the good work copwatchers lol
 

TROLL ALERT

as someone who watches this site regularly I gotta tell ya--

these posts of mutually congratulating police supporters come too close together to be more than one person.

do they just happen to be sitting at their computers all at the same time just waiting for someone to post to this thread?

Na ah.

don't feed the trolls.
 

Officer, how could this be amusing?

If you like throwing b.s. back at ranting, hateful children your arm must get awful tired. All the helpful info you give out in your reply is certainly commendable, but why engage in the mud-slinging? There's just too many of them waiting to take a cheap shot at you, and that would inevitably make you angry, and that just might affect your job performance. And that's not amusing for you or me when push comes to shove.

Some say our society is only as good as its cops. You guys have the toughest job this side of Iraq...so why stoop to the level of these infantile pseudo-radicals by returning all the b.s.? It just gives them more reason to validate their low opinion of you. This girl who keeps taunting you claims to be educated, yet she can hardly spell correctly. That makes her ignorant as well as angry, which is just as dangerous.

Show her a more noble path (surely you joined the force to make a difference) and you'll shut her up while you open her mind. These kids are clueless and you're the most convenient target for raging at a world they can't understand. You've got a world of first-hand experience to enlighten them about the real world (and all the bullshit politics involved in civic policymaking which orders you to do things like roust the homeless and hand out expensive fines to people who lean back on a public railings). Use it.

As to my ex-homeless brother. He was also a squatter and showed little respect for property or cops. He never touched a crack pipe, but he probably looked like a crackhead since he suffered from manic depression and had a sad history of a broken home and a stint in the ghetto during his formative years. There's usually a similar story to each of these people that's too often disregarded once they're labeled "bad guys" by those who can't or won't look at the causes.

I've been ripped off, badgered and suffered property damage from these people, but having seen the failure of family and an indifferent society that leads to their tragic state I have to take a more sympathetic view of them. It sucks that you guys are left with the task of mopping up society's mess when these casualties fuck up and affect other people while our government cuts funding to clean them up, get them off the street and empower them with some sense of hope. Too bad we don't hear more dialogue about that instead of the usual "fuck-you-cop" drivel.

Why don't you really stick it to 'em and describe what it must be like to be suddenly punched in the face by a drug-crazed kid you're questioning after someone he was terrifying called you for help. Maybe providing your readers with vivid recollections like that will help them realize why you guys appear so edgy.

Meanwhile, amuse yourself with the notion that these close-minded and misguided quasi-hipsters that keep insulting you will most likely grow up to be the same jaded yuppie swine that will call on you to protect their property with the same not-in-my-backyard attitude our hippie-crit city legislators carry with them when they vote on the next corporate-friendly city ordinance for you to enforce. In the words of the immortal Frank Rizzo (former Philadelphia police chief)..."A liberal is a conservative who hasn't been mugged yet."
 

Troll Alert?..Speak for yourself!

to "no troll"..That's pathetic to not see the difference in style of folks responding here, and to advocate the censorship of those not in lock-step with a certain perspective. What makes that any different than the fascist corporate media propaganda? Life is in shades of gray, and why not appreciate dialoge that mirrors reality? It's okay to question powers that be, but to trash them unjustly says more about the trasher, than the trashee.
 

Sniping from the Shadows

I identify myself and leave my real e-mail. Lailo identifies herself by name. The Streetlight witnesses presumably can be contacted by going to their store.

The SCPD whitewashers hide behind labels, psuedonyms, and numbers. Does that say something about credibity?

If any of these brave critics want to discuss the issues (even anonymously), they are again invited to call or e-mail in to my radio show tomorrow (Thursday November 11) 6-8 PM) on www.freakradio.org . Call 831-427-3772 or chatroom in at www.pagesincolor.com .

For those who want to be a part of the solution to redressing these abuses, contact Santa Cruz copwatch (www.santacruzcopwatch.org).

If more police were courageous like NYPD Officer Eduardo Delacruz, suspended for refusing to unfairly target homeless people, I might give more credence to policesyms.

How much shelter space is available for homeless people in Amused Officer's neck of the woods? When has he stood up for the rights of the poor people on his beat? Does s/he sleep well at night enforcing "move along" and "no camping" laws in areas where homeless people have no alternative?

Transparently vicious generalizations like "The problem with the homeless here is, they often go into abandoned houses and smoke crack, have sex and vandalize the house, leaving a mess and quite an expense for the person who owns it" show the mentality beneath the mask.

False and demeaning stereotypes eliminate the need to address the issues. Is the writer really a cop? Is this the mentality that's walking the streets up north?

Internal Affairs investigations? Right. How many officers in your department have actually been suspended or fired by such IA investigations when they involve excessive force?
Oh, I forgot, you're anonymous.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I definately recommend people Google the fore-mentioned Delacruz incident. I'm a NYC resident, but I never heard the story till now. It's definately heartening and, along with the incidences of direct disobediance in Iraq, give me hope that there are some people in positions of authority who are able to look being "only doing their job."
Amused Pig is a racist, straight-up, and I hope he can come to terms with that. I give him respect for trying to communicate his ideas (and for having any; that's rare for cops) and I understand that to someone waste deep in racist, classist stereotypes, everyone here can sound like an idiot, but i assure you, we're not.
oh, and these local incidences need attention! someone involved, please write something! if you send it to The Project, a Santa Cruz indymedia project, it will be published.
TheProject (at) studentmedia.ucsc.edu
FUCK THE PIGS!
 

In The Shadows For Good Reason

Robert: Since my main job now is taking care of my elderly mother, I won't be using any other than my moniker of 40 years, Bones. Protecting/caring for her is number one... I seem to remember you getting your car stolen a number of years ago, the one with the "fuck the pigs" sticker on the back, and didn't the SCPD find and return your wheels the very same day! Did they kick your ass when they returned it to you? I don't think so. My experiences with them have been mostly positive, like your auto theft one I mentioned. It's true that I punched a judge out, back in '74. It was worth all the dues I paid to society for it, because he epitomized everything negative that's been said in this dialogue. I found ways to terrorize that "fuckhead" until the day he died. ...I've yet to hear any of us who were born and raised here be so prejudiced of all cops. I'm more inclined to say "Fuck Transplants", as you are responsible for any ruining of this town, from the plastic yuppies, spoiled university punks, to the psuedo-hippy/cooler than thou, "trust-fund" geeks(like you), with nothing better to do than whine, and stir shit. If this is personal, there are ways and places we can settle that too, if you've got the stones.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

"I identify myself and leave my real e-mail. Lailo identifies herself by name. The Streetlight witnesses presumably can be contacted by going to their store.

The SCPD whitewashers hide behind labels, psuedonyms, and numbers. Does that say something about credibity?"

---I have a job to think about. I'm not gullable or stupid enough to put my name on these posts. I doubt the volunteers at your local indy station give a flying fuck what you say or how it may effect your 20 listeners.

"If any of these brave critics want to discuss the issues (even anonymously), they are again invited to call or e-mail in to my radio show tomorrow (Thursday November 11) 6-8 PM) on www.freakradio.org . Call 831-427-3772 or chatroom in at www.pagesincolor.com."

---I wouldnt do anything that might get you 21 listeners.

"How much shelter space is available for homeless people in Amused Officer's neck of the woods? When has he stood up for the rights of the poor people on his beat? Does s/he sleep well at night enforcing "move along" and "no camping" laws in areas where homeless people have no alternative?"

----The city I live in is largely "ghetto" and outside of downtown and a few scattered spots has little tourist value. The homeless are not treated unfairly and yes there are plenty of shelters here, however as I stated before, believe it or not, most who are homeless here are crackheads or prostitutes and they bunk up together in abandoned houses or seedy motel rooms.

"Internal Affairs investigations? Right. How many officers in your department have actually been suspended or fired by such IA investigations when they involve excessive force?"

----Too many. Most cases are when the officer(s) are trying to restrain the subject who wants to fight, is on drugs or drunk, and is going to resist going to jail at all costs.

Like that fatass Nathaniel Jones in Cincinatti. The guy is high on PCP, about 300 lbs., and hungry (they were at White Castle). He calls the officers rednecks, whiteboys, etc. (which reverse racism is apparently okey dokey for the fine folks at indymedia) before they even approach or make contact with him. They struggle with him for 30 seconds trying to get him to comply. He attacked them, the officers did the right thing, by taking it up the use of force spectrum one notch (the batons). Every officer I know would have done the same thing.

Mr Cody, I know its a requirement in your pseudo rebellious social group to believe we are racist. But I dont believe I ever made a racist statement. We have over 800 minority officers on our department, most of whom would agree wotj everything I have typed here

FUCK THE INDYMEDIA IDIOTS!!!
 

Indymorons losing again...

Give it up people, as I occasionally browse through these anti-police sites I'm seeing more and more level headed reasonable people who support police overall, retorting your silly posts. Support and empathy for you black blockin, protesting, hypocritical naive idiots' is squandering. And you know it.

Before someone says......These posts are all coming from the same person, just wanted to make it clear that the above post was from me. (Anyone with any intelligence can tell people's posts apart anyway though)
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Well I live in Watsonville where as far as I can tell we do not have a police state. No Santa Cruz police officer has treated me ill.

However having quietly been around in the background when the police are called and they exert their presence I have seen quite a few cases of over reaction. This is statewide, milder in my view in Santa Cruz. Once when told to get down on the ground I said "I have a metalized hip and I can't..." and result wasn't just a please stand still until things calm down.

But I have been encountered walking home ehrn I lived in Palo Alto and told I was doing all sorts of things that I was not. Like checking doors, looking into people's windows etc. It was obvious to anyone with a smidgen of photograpbic or physiological knowledge that at a distance of 100
meters no one in very dim light is going to be able to tell that I had dark blue socks on. This was absurd.

The only local police I have had an amusing times with is some of the county sheriff's deputies.
I once remember getting off the bus st Glen Arbor
and Highway 9 (and Main Street) and walking home down highway 9. I had got maybe 500 meters down the road and a sheriif's crusier pulled up behind me and an officer got out. She began questioning me. I told her I had got off the bus and was walking home. She gleefully told me I was lying because the last bus left town at 9PM. I had a copy of Headways which I pulled out and found the Route #35 schedule and asked her to read the last schedule. She then sort of relented and went off.

This has been done to me a number of times. That and that mysterious belief that if one is just minding one's own business one should have 111 IDs
to make authorities happy.

It is clear to me why the police and sometimes disliked and it is not always the citizen's fault.
The police often act in a high handed manner.
Often it is young rookies feeling their oats and
authority. It gets hard to keep forgiving people
for being questionable.

U mean it is obvious to me that if O have bags of grocies and IU walking home I have gone shopping
and I am not going to climb fences and do nefarious deeds.

I don't think this applies to all police officers
act like this. It is clear some would like to be
judge, jury and executuoioner.

We in this country treat the police with a great deal of deference and it is clear to me in some cases they abuse this trust.

Before it gets out of hand and people lose all trust in them, their superiors should take them
in hand and have them calm down a bit.

Now overall Santa Cruz is not as bad as other
places I have lived. But still an heighted amount of ,modesty and decorum would be a good thing for
the local police to learn. I know the job is not easy sometimes but that is no excuse.

Have Fun,
Sends Steve
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Robert Norse?I've heard it's really Robert Norse Kahn.Are you afraid,or ashamed of your heritage?Some of us have what's called a life.You know, career, and family.You've got nothing to lose but your lard ass.I've got to go to work, but I guarantee I back up Bones all the way.
 

Unanswered Questions

The invitation to speak over Free Radio (whether anonymously or by name) has been made. Folks can better draw conclusions from a dialogue involving people who are actually willing to talk openly (even if you don't give your real name). Folks interested in this discussion are invited to call in, if they have the "stones".

Bones: Personal attacks and threats don't address the issues here. No, it's not personal. So why are you attacking me personally?

Amused Officer/Breaking Down Norse/???: You don't give any specifics about IA complaints. I would wager very very few of them if any are sustained by the in-house investigations. The figures are public record, if you care to say what city you're from. Or, if not, you can find out the numbers and pass them on to us.

Ditto with the number of homeless people in your town, the number of shelter spaces. In Santa Cruz there's space for less than 40 tonight, with an estimated population of 1500-2000.

Solutions can only be found if we can accurately see the problem.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz, a city of 60,000 has a homeless population of 1500-2000 people?

I'm afraid you're going to have trouble convincing the general population that it's their job to support the overwhelming number of homeless.

I'm afraid there comes a point when people become responsible for themselves.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

To all of those who write "Fuck the Pigs," which I assume means the entire law enforcement community, and say that cops are nothing but racists with stereotypes and "closed minds"; aren't u stereotyping law enforcement by chastising all for the actions of a few? How can you say police are close-minded when you are as well? I feel sorry for the police officers in Santa Cruz who have to deal with such an ungracious community. Have there been bad police officers, of course, but too judge all by the awful actions of a few is ridiculous. After reading these posts I have even more respect for law enforcement because I got a taste of what they have to deal with. Walk a mile in their shoes before you judge them. To those CLOSE-MINDED, wanna be righteous people, I say shame on you! Thank you to all from the law enforcment community for the sacrifices you make. Unfortunately, not too many people in this nation know what it means to sacrifice.
 

The "P" Word Is Not Unlike The "N" Word

A few years ago a friend and I were spending the day in PG/Monterey area, and he took the opportunity to use the "N" word. I reminded him of that sweet, young, black girl at the restaurant who was kind to us, and that he was talking about her too, when he used that word. Growing up here, I had a slightly older friend, who was always nice to me, and everyone else I know of. Even when he was a career cop, and I was seriously "fucking up" in a violent way, he was my friend, and was actually, very helpful. When people use the "P" word, I think of Jeff, someone who I wish was my father. Predjudice in any way, shape, or form is not acceptable.
 

Amused Officer Still Can't Shoot Straight

Dear Amused Officer,

Do you get satisfaction at being part of the solution or the problem? Sure, I support you guys and the job you do trying to make this town safe for everyone...I know most of you would arrest anyone beating up a Latino or homeless person despite whatever criminal record that victim may have.

Perhaps three years on the force hasn't been enought time for you to see that some people you write off as scumbags can actually turn it around. My ex-homeless/criminal brother now works as a social worker for the mentally ill and has used his experience with his many police encounters to draft new procedures to deal with 5150 incidents. Years ago his violent behavior (and size) could have warranted a good head-busting from the many officers who arrived at the scene. Luckily, that never happened - to the credit of the force. So much for the "Police State" theory.

But spending time and calories throwing shit back at hateful, spoiled children seems even more of a losing battle than keeping the hourds of criminals from descending on this town and having their way. Obviously your critics in this forum have never had to face what you all put up with on a daily basis (they talk tough, but I know one day on the beat would make them shit their pants). Perhaps enlightening them about the real world and the effect it has on the street (not to mention the effect it has on your patience and tolerance with our society's self-created mess) just might instill them with the proper respect for the job you're asked to do. I'm sure there are dozens of things that piss you off about this town's hypocritical politics behind its law enforcement mandates - most of which are totally lost on the people who find it easier to sling shit at you for having to mop up the mess perpetuated by citizen APATHY instead of getting off their ass and helping take the pressure of you guys by volunteering their time to solve our problems. Did you know that hatred for the police continues to rise at the same time funding and volunteerism (especially at places that clothe, feed, shelter and rehabilitate the homeless and drug-addicted) continues to plummet? How's that for a nasty statistic? Since I'm sure you're more informed about these things than I am why don't you REALLY put these ignorant kids in their place by throwing out some examples from the real world to compare with the one they get on TV or the gangsta rap CD's that fly off the shelves every time a "Parental Advisory" label appears on the cover. Every cause has its effect. Educate us about what we don't know instead of insulting us about what we think we know and maybe you won't have to hear this constant sniveling each time your patience wears thin and you have to get a little heavy-handed during an arrest. Or maybe you just like to fight?

Maybe Robert Norse is a trust-fund leftist and a bit of a snob (you said it, not me). But how many of us consider it their day job to go out and put a dent in the status quo? Hats off to one of the proud and motivated few, however imperfect he might be.

Guess again, Mr. "No Troll". To anyone unfamiliar with the spoken word a Brooklyn accent sounds no different than a southern twang. Sounds like you're too unfamiliar with the written word to tell the difference in writing style between very different people. Try killing your TV and spending your evenings engrossed in a book...some of them are actually really cool! You can find them for free at the library. Run, don't walk, before we lose ours like Salinas is losing theirs because of funding cuts made by city legislators who decided they'd rather pay themselves $200K/year (it's true...I even know one of them) than save their city's three libraries. Steinbeck must be rolling in his grave.

Fuck the police! Kill the pigs! Long live the gangsta heroes I love to watch on TV!
 

Returning to the Issue: How do we hold police accountable?

The issue raised by Lailo at the very beginning of this thread was the power of the police to ignore the First Amendment and arrest people at will.

While I don't normally go in for slogans like "fuck the pigs" (as Bones correctly notes, it overgeneralizes and depersonalizes), I can readily understand it when something like Maurer puts such a sign on his hat to protest SPECIFIC police misconduct towards him. What really pisses me off is when police then compound the abuse by arresting him for displaying that sign.

The real problem that Copwatch, Citizens Police Review Boards, ACLU critiques, indymedia forums, and spontaneous anger on the streets respond to is inappropriate police force or violence. Where's the responsibility? What can ordinary people do?

Ive watched the Santa Cruz psuedo-progressive bureaucracy respond (or more accurately divert, dis, dump, and divide) with an ineffectual and gutted Citizens Police Review Board (which, when it began to act, was simply eliminated).

Police Auditor Bob Arenson's budget has been further slashed, he informed me yesterday by phone, so he no longer keeps office hours. His job is simply doing confidential "reviews" of IA (Internal Affairs) reports that the public never sees. The Council's Public Safety Committee, comprised of Kennedy, Porter, and Rotkin are another level of PR that buries concerns about police misconduct (and potential federal misconduct using the Patriot Act, for example).

I've watched the cover-up of the Happy John Dine shooting, no punishment for overboard officers like Vice-Chief Patty Sapone with her costly Blue Lagoon capers, and the rehabilitation of Sgt. Butchie Baker after the nine women accused him of sexual improrprieties in the early 90's--who has lost (through out-of-court settlement) at least two federal lawsuits in the last few years (mine and Mike True's) for false arrest.

Local police are simply not held accountable for excessive force, even for bad judgment. Or if they are, it all happens behind closed doors with no apparent change in personnel or policy.

It takes a lawsuit like Richard Quigley's against Sheriff Mark Tracy that threatens to hit the County in the pocket book, to get corrupt people at the top to resign early. And even then we have to pay them off with $142,000 per year.

n5667, Set aside the idea of economic "support" for homeless people. It's illegal to simply fall asleep outside in Santa Cruz (or in your vehicle) after 11 PM. We pay police to harass, cite, and arrest them for doing what humans have to do. Ironically, this costs more than more sensible solutions like campgrounds, carparks, and--what a concept!--respecting the right to be left alone.

In the struggle to hold police accountable (and this is what it's really all about), homeless folks are on the front line--not because they want to be, but because police come to them.

I again encourage people to check out the Copwatch training on November 20th (see Tom Belote's posts above).

I promise the phones will be working tomorrow on Free Radio at www.freakradio.org 9:30-1 p.m. (happens every Sunday morning) if folks want to call in at 831-427-3772. Come on you big bashful bashers, strut your stuff out where folks can hear and respond to you. If the phone line is busy try www.pagesincolor.com chatroom.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

"n5667, Set aside the idea of economic "support" for homeless people. It's illegal to simply fall asleep outside in Santa Cruz (or in your vehicle) after 11 PM. We pay police to harass, cite, and arrest them for doing what humans have to do. Ironically, this costs more than more sensible solutions like campgrounds, carparks, and--what a concept!--respecting the right to be left alone.

In the struggle to hold police accountable (and this is what it's really all about), homeless folks are on the front line--not because they want to be, but because police come to them."

Then you're going after the wrong people - the police don't create the laws - the elected city council does - so your beef is with the citizens of Santa Cruz.

I recall when several homeless were allowed to camp in New Brighton State Park - having lived next to the park I remember how enjoyable that was... It's a pity sarcasm is so difficult to convey on the internet, but those people had problems ranging from rape and assault to over dosing on drugs in the bathroom and dying, and all in the span of 2 weeks!
 

State Of Populous

Thank you Robert for some acknowlegement that predjudiced slogans are depersonalizing/generalities. Night Owl makes some good points, however, I believe the generation perpetuating them here is grandfather to the new gratuitously violent, t.v. gangsta elememt. Kids probably havn't even heard of the atrocities at Kent State, or Wounded Knee. How lucky we were to have Jerry Brown as governor when there were plans already drawn for a nuclear power plant at Davenport, offshore oil drilling, and cities visualized to connect us with San Francisco. He gave a big thumbs down to all of them, including extraditing Dennis Banks and friends for their efforts at wounded knee. A power shift in local government, also helped secure the greenbelt, along with people like myself educating the general public on the negative aspects of nuclear energy.... My family enjoyed four generations of the beauty, wonder, culture, and mediterranean climate of Santa Cruz, before potentially millions decided this was the place to live. There were no problems of affordable housing here, before the influx. If you were not born or raised here in the '60's or before, you are part of the problem. New people have no idea how small this place was in my lifetime. The "poll" that 1/3 of homeless people were born and raised here is not true. As I've said before, I delivered mail to the homeless shelter for five years in the '80's, and never did I see anyone there, that I had seen before. The only homeless local guy I knew, I helped find a job, and the path to AA....The government should have taken the opportunity to house/train/help the homeless at the newly vacant Fort Ord. With the current powers that be, don't hold your breath. My only concern is that when you advocate for the powerless, do it in a positive way. That's the only hope you have.
 

More On Santa Cruz, From A Native

Most of the friends I grew up with, some of them black, havn't been able to afford living here for decades. Those are the people that I empathize with. Does anybody realize that the house/mobile home/rent you can afford, someone else from here couldn't?! I've never heard any complaints from those displaced, just gracious exodus.... I've spent close to four years on Kauai, having moved there numerous times. Everything has to be shipped in, so the price of living is 17% higher. Work is inconsistant, so I had to move back. I feel blessed I got to live there four years, one in Costa Rica/Panama, and the rest in Santa Cruz. ...It's not a good idea to live illegally in public or private places for the publics, and your own health. ...I don't know what the answer is, however, being hostile towards a city with laws/police is not one. You can't force a minority opinion down the throats of everyone. That's called fascism, no matter what the purpose/rationale.---Kind of a microcosm of what the U.S. is doing to the world.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Being a former homeless person in Santa Cruz, I know the problems that are experienced and how to overcome. Robert Norse is a pompus idiot and trust fund baby who puts up a front that he helps us. Norse is what we call a poser who just likes the limelight and is only making the situation more difficult for us homeless. Norse is a liar and he in no way represents those of us who appreciate the santa cruz police. My hats off to the police even though ive been arrested, I probably deservd it. Most of the santa cruz police iv met were good peaple and the ones that were not all that nice were still alright. Robert Norse needs to go back to the east coast where he came from. Oh yeh, his mommy and daddy paid him off to move to Californ. Its time to thank the police for making santa cruz a safer place.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

If a police officer shows up to your political meeting in uniform but has removed his badge, identifying himself as "Amused Officer," what would you think?

This, in essence, is what is happening here. In a democracy, the police (unless working under cover) wear badges with their name and number and department. In general, they do not show up in uniform at political meetings to participate in the discussion, unless specifically invited.

The chance that "Amused Officer" is monitoring this discussion and posting here in his capacity as a private citizen rather than as an authorized, anonymous agent of a police department, is pretty close to zero.

Your tax dollars at work.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

"
The chance that "Amused Officer" is monitoring this discussion and posting here in his capacity as a private citizen rather than as an authorized, anonymous agent of a police department, is pretty close to zero."

Indeed - because police aren't allowed to surf the internet and engage in discussion unless it's for the purpose of spying on us...

Of course, I must say, this is a pertty unique approach to spying...
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Casual Observer: If you really think that cops don't have lives, or opinions that can be made incognito on the net, (especially out of town ones), it's your intelligence that is more likey "pretty close to zero."
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Amen P. Davidson! Finally, a person on this site who knows the meaning of accountability. Can someone please tell me who this Robert Norse idiot is? He treats this site like its his personal web page and anyone who preaches about how much they do for others is usually blowing smoke up our you know what. It makes me feel good to know that his settlements from his numerous frivolous law suits are being paid by our tac dollars. Thank you Mr. or Mrs. Davidson for your posting.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

And for n5667, you dumbass,why on earth is it the cops fault that homeless are being "raped, assaulted and overdosing on drugs and dying in the bathrooms". Folks need to be acoutible for their own actions. Lay off the police and get a life.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

P Davidson: The first two paragraphs of n5667's message on (homeless) rape/assault/overdosing are "exact" quotes of Robert's statement, directly above it. In response to this in the next two paragraphs, n5667 says the very same thing as you do, about the accountability of people, and their behavior.
 

Probably my last post on here

Well its been interesting and somewhat reaffirming to see that not everyone who visits this site has the same mentality of the original person who started this thread.

Bones and N567 have already stated what I was thinking as I read "Casual Observer's" comments. You really need to put your sense of self-importance in check pal. Do you really think any police department let alone any individual officer takes unfounded complaints like this shit seriously?? I stated in one of my first few posts I dont even live in the state. This thread came up during a search I was doing...from home...off duty...

You must think on my $42K income that I cant afford a personal computer or something. And if I was "gathering intelligence" for a police department, why would I join the discussion and let it be known I was an officer?? DOesnt make a whole lot of sense. Go look for UFO's or study the Kennedy Assasination again.

These anti-police idiots' stupidity truly knows no limits.

If any of you havent listened to any of Robert Norse's shows, I actually strongly recommend you do so. Nothing the police can say or do can do more for our PR than listening to these scrotes Norse digs up for his show. After listening, you'll be URGING the SCPD to break out the batons on these idiots.

By the way Norse, get your phones fixed. lol
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

My apologies to n5667 - He was just quoting that retard Norse again - go figure. Figures Norse would make up BS like that.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Look, people, obviosly there are bad cops out there. I am about as liberal as they come -- Ghandi ain't got nothin' on me!!!! -- and I have a few annoying cop stories same as any pseodo-intellectual, punk out there.

But (oh, comon, you knew it was coming) police officers have a pretty shitty job. Granted, a fair portion of them get off on it, and those men and women jsut plain suck. But there are quite a few out there who aren't ass holes unless you are an ass hole to them. And, let's be honest here, if someone were to come up to you and call you a shit fucking monkey testicle licker, wouldn't you get just a wee bit teste?

And, no, I am most certainly not a cop, nor is anyone in my immediate or distant family, as far as I know. I am an ex-journaist, a socialist if yuo were to pigeon hole me, and an avid consumer of adult substances, INCLUDING alcohol. Not the most liekly person to be standing up for the "pigs."

Look, life isn't fair, and shit happens. It sucks, but that is how it is. Working ofr positive change is always a good thing, but violence and name calling isn't going to work. It serves merely to irritate an already sore situation and set both sides on edge.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Amused Private Citizen Pretending He is and Isn't a Cop said"

"Do you really think any police department let alone any individual officer takes unfounded complaints like this shit seriously?? I stated in one of my first few posts I dont even live in the state. This thread came up during a search I was doing...from home...off duty..."

and then

"If any of you havent listened to any of Robert Norse's shows, I actually strongly recommend you do so. Nothing the police can say or do can do more for our PR than listening to these scrotes Norse digs up for his show. After listening, you'll be URGING the SCPD to break out the batons on these idiots. "


Freak radio must have some pretty strong radio transmitters.
 

To the nameless critics: Police Accountability Is still the Issue

The incidents described at the beginning of this thread can't be filed under "annoying cop stories". When Leilo is punitively arrested for copwatching and refused a breathalyzer test, that qualifies as retaliation for legitimate oversight--an oversight the SCPD itself does not meaningful exercise. When Mike is brutalized for not sitting down in the midst of a political protest and then arrested on the catchall charge of "resisting arrest", that's police state stuff.
And has become unfortunately rather standard.

The facts can be disputed. They should be examined. But critics on this string have not done so.

But ignoring the specifics charged and ridiculing and disparaging those who raise these issues is obviously a form of special pleading for the police.

It's obviously futile to try to argue rationally with individuals who feel police generally can do no wrong and who don't want to talk about the specific cases.

The truth lies in the details, in sorting out the different accounts.

That's the point of Copwatching and airing these stories on indymedia.

I encourage people not to be discouraged by the baiting, nasty personal attacks, and macho bullshit that's thrown about here.

Carry a tape recorder and a small camera. Don't be afraid to watch a police stop--and from a distance where you can hear and see what's going on. Don't interfere, but don't be intimidated by frequent police pressure to move you on. The SCPD is actually better about tolerating citizen observation than many police departments.

I also commend those who were brave enough to give their names. You may get a slew of personal attacks--but others are listening and watching as well. Of course, it does mean you get to read all kinds of interesting fictitious personal stories.

Often folks just won't believe that police aren't their friends--until abuse happens to them or someone close to them. That's just the way it is.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Although an individual cop is like any other individual human being, the fact remains that those in the law enforcement profession, like medical doctors and marines (among many other professions), very seldom break ranks. In any situation where it is a cop vs. a citizen, they will always back up the other cops. There is a strong (proto-fascist) mentality in our country that causes many citizens to identify with this sort of military-like "professionalism." However it is anathema to the healthy functioning of a democratic justice system. Even if, as the Amused Officer claims, he is spying on the discussion as a private citizen rather than as a uniformed officer, it hardly matters. The chill it places on meaningful criticism is apparent.

By simply pointing out that it is unlikely he is here just for his own entertainment, I am ridiculed as an idiot and conspiracy theorist. Whether he thinks he is performing a "public service" by ridiculing and intimidating people on his own time, or whether he is a paid FBI agent provocateur, misses the point.

Sorry, but citizen oversight of the government, and that includes the police, is a fundamental right in a democracy. Those who ridicule it and try to take it away are the ones deserving of ridicule, and it is they who are profoundly anti-American.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

"Freak radio must have some pretty strong radio transmitters."

Freak Radio must have a strong webcast too...

www.freakradio.org/listen.html
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Mr Casual Observer has very select obvservation skills. He apparently missed the endless links Mr Norse has posted about his show being streamed on the internet.

LOL, Im not ridiculing you as an idiot bud, just pointing out the obvious.
 

Kick Start Your Brain

Robert: I havn't said or read anything fictitious here in response to the originators/their followers of Police State In Santa Cruz. Now you are in other words, calling us "liars"?. Along with that, when those like "Laila","by racists are trolls", and "no trolls" call myself and Big Dog "racist trolls", and refer to all cops as "pigs", is that "examining the facts?"(Your point) No, that is nasty personal attacks, and macho bullshit.(One of your points also, remember?!) Why aren't you appalled by that? Can't you see the hypocracy there, or does it make it acceptable because you blindly agree with these people? Jeff Locke was a cop who helped me. I take it personal when people attack myself, friends, or anyone unjustly, verbally or physically assaulted.(Even you and your comrades!) How do you expect people to rally for your cause, when most of you act as idiotic as you claim the cops are? Calling people horrible, hostile, insulting names, and wonder why they want to kick your ass is really stupid. I can't help but believe that is the major malfunction of 99% of the anti-authority folks represented here. Do you really think people, including your comrades should get away with predjudice? You can't be that dumb. Steven Argue is the only one anti-cop on this thread sticking to facts, and situations as he sees it. How can you or I dispute "the facts", when neither of us were there? No one said the police can do no wrong here. I think all authority should be questioned, but when most of the dialogue against it wreaks of "hostile prejudice", the very point you're accusing the police of, what makes that any different than what you claim they are?! And what makes you folks some how exempt from question? You people can't stay out of your own way!
 

Factual Accountability

Donald Barnes was the judge I assaulted back in '74. (Look up prick in the dictionary, and their's a pictures of him.) Jeff Locke, who rised to Assistant Chief Of Police, was the "very cool" cop who helped me after the suicides of four of my family, when I was seriously "fucking up" in a violent way. My good buddy "Big Dog" hasn't given me the go ahead on his given name. Anyone here any length of time would know him by knick name. He and his brother from Watsonville played in the NFL, and beat up a group of Hells Angels in Rio Flats, when they were in high school, because the enforcer, the late Bill Perky and gang were bullying locals. That story is lengendary around here. His nephew, when quarterback for the Raiders, was run out of the league for drugs. When I travel with him, I refer to him as my bodyguard, because in his 'mid 60's he can still bench press 300 lbs. ten times. I can't think of anyone I would rather not piss-off.
 

Brutality On Police

Richard "The Kid" Lindsay, a good friend of mine at Santa Cruz High School and since, was beaten by Santa Cruz police officers while handcuffed, outside the Seabright Villa Apartments, Atlantic Avenue, in 1973. He had been arrested for battering three police officers, including Officer Sean Upton. I was in the courtroom when Officer Upton had to apologize for grabbing Lindsay's arm, assuming he was in a cast and sling, as Richard's doctor testified he had operated on it for a severely torn bicep. All charges were dropped, so "The Kid" got away with seiously kicking-ass on three SCPD officers, with one arm, and two feet. Richard was the toughest guy at SCHS, and known for his natural abilities analogous with a great martial artist. He never bothered to legally go after the group of police for beating him, as he figured they looked pathetic enough in court, still injured physically and mentally.
 

Hats Off to Bones

Larry: Thanks for saying who you are and giving specific factual details. I'll be taking time later to give you a more specific response to your questions.

I haven't called you (or anyone else in this string) "liars". I did suggest that those who give their real names both increase their credibility and (as you have said) their vulnerability.

By "interesting fictional personal stories", I was referring to P. Davidson and Disgusted doing their irrelevant personal dissing --not to the accounts they or anyone else posted.

Thanks again for your honesty. More later.
 

Response to Larry's Questions

I think a clear distinction has to be made between those who have recently had contacts with police where they believe police have abused them, and those who make second or third-hand commentary about that situation (particularly skeptical or critical commentary).

I have more sympathy from someone who expresses generalized hostility to the police after an abusive incident, than I do for those who express general hostility towards apparent victims of police abuse when they present their stories.

I do understand that if you think a story is false and defamatory, it's natural to react angrily to it.

Hence I have more empathy for those who I believe have been abused--even when they angrily call police names in reaction (a natural reaction, actually).

It's admittedly inaccurate and unfair to extend that hostility to include innocent police officers.

The problem, however, is that in my experience officers often cover for each other. Part of the problem lies in being a police officer at all in what is, for homeless people, a rigged game where police are not only encouraged and expected to enforce unfair class-based laws, but where oftimes police officials initiate such laws (as with the Sleeping Ban in 1978).

I don't believe I "blindly" agree with Leilo and Mike. In fact, if you listen to the radio shows, you'll find I interview as many people as I can find.

I'm frankly more appalled by abuses from people in power (like police and politicians) than from folks who get hassled (deservedly or not).

I liked Jeff Locke personally too. That didn't prevent me from (publicly) chacterizing his behavior towards homeless people as bigoted (specifically regarding his support of Sgts. Baker and Clark around homeless deaths in the City Council's Committee To Examine the Camping Ordinance in January 1999).

I'm not really much of a diplomat or politician myself, but--like you, I imagine, believe in calling things as I see them. Hence, while I'd love to have people "rally to my cause", I say what appears to me to be true, however "idiotic" it may sound to others.

Use of the epithet "pig" to describe the police is unfair to some police officers, I agree. I don't use it to describe any police officers, myself.

But I also understand that for some it can be a liberating form of expression--which shows anger, defiance, a determination to resist, and what the speaker believes to be a harsh but accurate characterization. In the L.A. Rampart and Oakland Rider conspirasies, for example, where corrupt and violent police officers injured or jailed many people--it's actually an insult to barnyard animals to call such folks "pigs".

I don't want to seem immodest, but I don't think Steven Argue is the only one on this thread sticking to the facts.

I agree that "hostile prejudice" is unwise, prejudicial to exposing real misconduct, and to be avoided. But it's important to distinguish between unjustified hostility and hostility generated by experience.

Thanks again for the candor and interesting history.
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

The cops in Santa Cruz love enforceing the city's totalitarian edicts.Once when sitting around the clocktower with people drumming etc. someone knocked over a gallon glass jar of solar tea.I went over to see what was up and a cop starts writing me a ticket for the broken glass!I laid a reality check on him and managed to prevail with logic and he tore it up. Another night i was waiting outside the Common Ground for my friend Nancy to finish cleaning up inside.I was ecstatic because she was beautifull and was going to take me home with her.I began dancing as it began to mist lightly and that attracted a cop who chaces me into the Common Ground where Nancy my Amazon friend told him i was with her.I grinned wide and he stammered and left:) Just thought some happy stories could add a little cheer.I was hauled off pleanty of times for rediculous stuff like abuse of trees when i was hanging on the large branch on a tree in front of the PG&E office on the Mall or misuse of city property when i placed a shirt on a water pipe in front of the Bookshop Santa Cruz while i took off a layer underneath or a night on Seabright beach when we were walking off twenty minutes before closing time(how you close a beach i don't know) we were stopped and ticketed though we had followed the sherrifs call to leave by Ten pm.It's astounding this city hasn't been slammed in Federal Court. How the Ohlone must be shaking their heads wherever they are.
 

FREE THE MOVE 9!

i must repsond to a comment made by night owl incognito:

s/he said:
" Meanwhile, amuse yourself with the notion that these close-minded and misguided quasi-hipsters that keep insulting you will most likely grow up to be the same jaded yuppie swine that will call on you to protect their property with the same not-in-my-backyard attitude our hippie-crit city legislators carry with them when they vote on the next corporate-friendly city ordinance for you to enforce. In the words of the immortal Frank Rizzo (former Philadelphia police chief)..."A liberal is a conservative who hasn't been mugged yet." "

i say this:
the former philadelphia police chief, frank rizzo, is immortal because he is SATAN.
he spearheaded the assualt on the move 9 organization.
Long Live John Africa!
the move 9 was able to expose the system for its hypocracy and brutality and that is why the state (rizzo) of philadelphia had to BOMB move's co-op house. (yes, i said bomb as in dropping a bomb on their house from a helicopter and causing more than 60 other homes to catch flames and burn!) this assualt on the move happened in the 1970s and 1980s in philly.
the move organization, made up mostly of conscious africanos, exposed the corrupt state and its system of brutality in the USA, they were also very involved in their community, with helping people out.
what could have caused the state to block off an entire block of their neighborhood, flood their house, drop a bomb on their house and to beat and murder their members and their CHILDREN in cold blood??!!
because they spoke their mind, practiced their right to bear arms, and refused to leave their house.
the thing is, is that when you expose the system for what it really is, it will attack you! words and the truth are dangerous to this system of brutality and it will doing anything it can to crush resistance. to them, speaking the truth is just as threatening as destruction to their property or self-defense.
this is why i have been attacked by the pigs.
so come on now, we all know that that person responding to our righteous comments has a multiple personality disorder
 

Re. FREE THE MOVE 9

when i said the move 9 organization, i meant to say the move organization.
right now there are 9 members of move being held captive in prisons
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

Lailo speaks with such love and warmth. The Move 9 must be freed. Down with all those who expose the system. We will attack all. Our righteous persons are what it really is. The brutality is the ivolved community!!! The hypocrasy is the state of flames of the conscious africanos. Block off the helping people and stop the police state that Lailo hates. I am with you amazon queen. Christofani speaks the truth to catch flames and burn. Long live those who expose the TRUTH!!! FREEEEEE THE MOVE 9!!!!!
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

I lived in Santa Cruz twenty years until 1996 when I went to Korea to teach English and I remain here, because when I was an anti-fascist social activist in the 1960's, I ended up in Army prison for 17 months and still have not recovered, so do not have the energy or nerve to continue to fight, five years of homelessness, bad jobs, police brutality, feminist harassment, kept me in poverty , just finally getting out. ANyhowm, all white men are not rich and stupid, I am one who is not, and want what is mine, the right to a life, Michael Moore describes what can be done, be kind to the right, talk sense, admit where they are right, do not bad vibe them, be a precinct delegate for the Demos, take over, but see a movie called The Night of the Shooting Stars, showing the shooting of the fascists by the people in post World War Two Italy, and in France collaborators were tried, God bless ITaly and France, they have a memory of freedom and we can take heart and know the Mussolini style fascism that has ruled the US these last twenty years will end, probably through the depression Bush is creating which will bring a losing war with China,Russia, and Europe, the hunger and chaos in the US will produce the second revolution , and the fascists in power will get their reward from God and the people as they did in Italy, Germany, and Japan.I have a Masters degree in Asian history from California State Univ and UCSC BA so the nitwit BS response to be expected from the Pusillanimous Ignorant Gonad Squad ( PIGS) that it is human nature to be violent or bad , that primitive self-serving social Darwinism, and atavistic bullying deserves no further response , as Mao said political power comes from the end of a gun, and soon we will see how it works both ways. I have been laughing my butt off for seven years here in Korea, China, Japan, and Thailand, because the fifty years of torture , poverty, abuse , muggings , lonliness, wage slavery, and more I had in the US is over, but the worst is just begun for the American simps who are marching blindly to the camps at Vandenburg, Tule Lake, in Lousiana, while the new Director of Security was the ambassador to Hondura who sold most of the cocaine for the CIA down there, and is symptomatic of how this cabal is heading for the deep end, save yourselves, but to the manger of the HIndquarters who insulted the delivery people and the fascist managers at Intel and Harmony Foods, and all the nitwit insignificant careerists born since 1970, doom on you, I will enjoy your suffering, but mostly will rejoice when all the police, judges, army officers and higher govt officials are in jail where they belong for war crimes and torture of innocent people in Afghanistan, Guatalmala, Chile, Iraq, Iran, El Salvador, Viet Nam, Grenada, Panama, Korea, and on and on the worst evil in the history of all the universes is the US, but you have the tools to end this soon, and make the heaven on earth real, it will happen. Love to all, in this and every world
Todd Saed
 

Re: Police State in Santa Cruz

eeesh you think you have it bad I was drug out of my shower to be given a ticket for parking on the grass, the car nor the house are mine, the case was dismissed do to improper procedure
 

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