Monthly Archives: June 2011

Coffee and Donuts

 France’s Lagarde Named New Head of I.M.F.

If it looks like shit and smells like shit, it probably is shit. That was one of the first lessons taught to me by an old time detective who broke me into the business of hunting down criminals. The New York Times is certainly stinking up the place with this shitty article. I know that the Times caters to the elitist crowd and I only read it because I’m a firm believer in Sun Tzu’s philosophies such as, “So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss. If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose. If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself”.

Nowhere does the Times mention the I.M.F.’s strategy of damage control in appointing a female, Christine Lagarde, as its new head. And the only mention of Dominique Strauss-Kahn is in the last paragraph of a two page article, “As the new I.M.F. managing director, Ms. Lagarde will be taking over at a delicate time, following the resignation last month of Dominique Strauss-Kahn”. Delicate as in he resigned due to the fact that he was arrested for forcibly shoving his penis into the mouth of a woman who said no. Maybe the Times and its elitist readers, like DSK, are hoping that this will all just go away.

Lawyers for 2 Ex-Officers Ask Judge to Bar Accuser From Speaking at Sentencing

Am I alone in saying that Mr. Tacopina is being a bit of a dick? Or is he just doing his job and hoping that the judge sentences his scumbag of a client to probation?

 
Doubts cast DNA evidence in Amanda Knox murder case.

I don’t know about you but I’m not the least surprised with this latest development. It’s Italy and Italians. They probably processed the crime scene while smoking cigarettes and drinking espresso.

Anyone for lunch?

Strauss-Kahn’s Demeanor at Lunch May Play Key Role in His Trial

 It seems that Dominique Strauss-Kahn, or DSK as he has come to be known, had a lunch date with his daughter Camille at a restaurant in Manhattan. Nothing unusual, you may say, other than it was on the same day and approximately one hour after he is alleged to have sexually assaulted the Guinean housekeeper who changes sheets and cleans the toilets of those who can afford to stay at a $3000 a night suite. Men like DSK, who obviously feel that their sexual desires must be satisfied whenever they want and by whomever happens to be available. The type of individuals that are not accustomed to someone saying no to them. I have come across quite a few of these characters in my career as a cop and a detective. I have also worked for a lot of them when I moonlighted as a bodyguard: one in particular who thought that he and his posse of 8 could ride through midtown Manhattan in a stretch limo with the windows and sunroof wide open, smoking pot like cigars. There was so much smoke blowing out that it appeared as if the inside of the limo was on fire. He gave me an incredulous look when I explained to him why that wasn’t such a good idea. 
 
By the way why is it necessary for the Times to mention the race of the victim?. Does  the color of her skin or her ethnicity matter?  Do Guinean women have a propensity for accusing rich and powerful men like DSK of sexual assault?

It seems that the lawyers representing DSK may try use surveillance video of the restaurant where he and his daughter had lunch in an attempt to establish his demeanor. The logic here is that how could DSK be so cool, calm, and collected just an hour after allegedly having forced his penis into the victim’s mouth. That no one who committed such a heinous act could act as if he had not just an hour earlier been an aggressive sexual predator. The answer is simple: DSK may not only a sexual predator but he also maybe a bit of a sociopath. I truly believe that he thinks that he did no wrong. That in his warped mind he feels that he is entitled to whatever he desires whenever he desires it.
 
Speak with any detective who has ever conducted an interrogation of someone charged with a committing a despicable and heinous crime. Ask them about the demeanor of the accused. I have interrogated stone cold killers whose demeanor was no different than a Sunday school teacher’s.  And who is going to believe a Guinean maid over the Director of the International Monetary Fund and the leading contender for the French Presidency? The French and their press don’t. They were initially shocked at first that DSK was treated like a common criminal by the New York City Police Department. Considering that he had a reputation as a ladies man and had garnered the moniker “the great seducer”, it wouldn’t surprise me if the French press has been keeping DSK’s other trespasses under wraps.

We shouldn’t wonder why other women have not come forward and pointed the finger at DSK. Society has proven that they have little chance for justice against rich and powerful men such as DSK. What chance do they have as long as it’s common practice to treat them as criminals instead of victims? What chance do they have when men like DSK believe that they are superior to women and above the law, so much so that they are able to sit for 90 minutes and have a nice leisurely lunch an hour after forcing themselves on a woman who makes her living by cleaning toilets? I hope that this Guinean woman gets her justice and that DSK will be sampling the culinary fare at Sing Sing for years to come. Maybe Camille can join him for lunch in the prison mess hall.

Coffee and Donuts Monday News Roundup


TSA defends decision to make 95-year-old cancer patient remove adult diaper for security screening

There are probably some very good reasons why the majority of TSA agents were stacking shelves in Wal Mart prior to joining the agency. I can think of one reason right off the top of my head: they lack  common sense that the good lord gave them. Janet Napolitano, or ‘Big Sis’ as she’s affectionately known, could do a a few things to help improve the image of the 8 billion dollar a year agency that she runs. She can start off by hiring agents that have a little common sense and who know the meaning of the word discretion. There’s a reason why these buffoons are not allowed to carry guns. Maybe someone can explain to me why any 95 year old woman has to be humiliated in this manner. And how in America can we give former shelf stackers the absolute power to “touch our junk” under the guise of keeping us safe?. Be careful or maybe the next time you, fly a TSA agent maybe ordering you to open wide. And it may not be your mouth that they are referring to.

Ohio woman, Stephanie Robinette, sprayed police with breast milk after fight with husband: cops

I wonder if the state of Ohio is now going to include women’s breast to its penal law list of deadly weapons. Or would that have to be breasts filled with milk. I wonder if those officers were able to contain themselves or did they break out in uncontrollable laughter? I know that I would have. I thought that consuming large of amounts of alcohol was a no-no for women who are breastfeeding. Where’s the video?

Police Cadets Sworn in, Laid Off

Talk about dedication and commitment to civic duty. These cadets deserve to commended for completing their training even though they knew they would be laid off immediately after graduation. How bittersweet. The laying off of cops is never a good idea in my opinion, especially now with the state of our economy.  It’s no wonder that crime in most of our major cities is on the rise.  Why is it that in our society the workers that we rely on so much are the most expendable?

Garry McCarthy, Chicago Top Cop, Calls Gun Laws ‘Government-Sponsored Racism’; Right Responds

What ever happened to the concept of intelligent conversation and debate in our country?. It seems that it’s just a lot easier to label someone as “nutty” if you disagree or don’t like with what they are
saying. If that doesn’t work, then play the “race card”. That’s one that always works regardless of the color of skin of the one who’s playing it. And why is it that ‘men of the cloth’ are accused of being radicals when they fight against the ills that affect their communities?

Ask A Cop: “Please call me at your earliest convenience”

In my ‘Question of the day cause I ain’t got shit to write about’, Elizabeth writes:

I would like to know what you would suggest doing if you ever find a detective’s business card with a note that says something to the effect of “please call me at your earliest convenience” in your mail box or shoved in your door.

Elizabeth, have you been a naughty girl? The answer is quite obvious, give them a call. There could be a host of reasons why the police are looking to speak with you. They could have simply been conducting a canvass of your block where a serious crime may have been committed. A canvass is a simple investigative tool that detectives use in hopes of locating a witness or an individual with some valuable information that may assist in the investigation. Or it could be that are trying to locate a missing person or a person of interest that you may know or may have known.

Whatever the reason, if it’s pressing that they speak with you in particular, they will be back. And you would really hate it if they knocked on your door during an inconvenient or inappropriate moment, or worse, showed up at your place of employment.

So if you’ve committed no crime, give them a call. If you have, well, call your lawyer. Hey, maybe they just think that you’re a hottie and want to ask you out on a date. Detectives have been known to do that now and then.

Saturday Links – Coffee and Donuts

In Southern Mexico, a Neglected Frontier

Another waste of the taxpayers’ money in the ‘War on Drugs’. Two hundred million dollars that can be used for treatment and education programs here in America. I didn’t know that Central America participated in the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Murder Rate and Fear Rise in Puerto Rico

Just the fact that no sitting U.S. President had visited Puerto Rico in 50 years just goes to show you in what regard the US holds its ‘colony’ in the Caribbean. My brother just happened to on the island during Obama’s visit and tells me that the ‘Ricans’ are really pissed at him. Seems President Obama was there just long enough to collect campaign contributions and didn’t even have a plate of arroz and habichuelas (rice and beans for those of you who don’t habla espanol). I’m sure he had time enough for a cocktail or two with the pharmaceutical company honchos (companies which, by the way, don’t pay taxes in Puerto Rico). The timing of this story by the New York Times is suspect, considering Obama’s visit. The Times also fails to mention Puerto Rico’s unemployment rate of 16 1/2 per cent and its poverty rate of 45 per cent, both of which are prime indicators of why the crime rate is so high and why the narcotics trade flourishes. Maybe President Obama should send some of that 200 million dollars earmarked for fighting the failed ‘war on drugs’ in Central America to our ‘colony’ in the Caribbean. Viva Puerto Rico Libre!

Did New Orleans Media Contribute to Police Violence After Hurricane Katrina?

Could it be that the press dropped the ball on this one? Or were they okay with the police murdering alleged looters because they were black? By the rhetoric espoused by then Gov. Kathleen Brown and Warren Riley, it appears that it was open season on blacks in New Orleans shortly after Hurricane Katrina. I wonder if any of these reporters worked for Fox News. And why hasn’t this story been carried by the main stream media? “Extra, extra read all about it.” Let’s hope we do.

Five Things to Do If You Get Pulled Over

Time for another segment of ‘Question of the day cause I ain’t got shit to write about’. Well I didn’t actually receive a question, but I’m sure that it’s a topic that my 8 subscribers may be interested in reading about.

Those of us who have been pulled over by the police while driving know that feeling of dread and doom that overcomes us upon hearing that siren or seeing the flashing red or blue lights of a police car in our rear view mirrors. For a moment, we hope and think that it’s the other guy who’s getting pulled over. We are in denial that it could be us until we quickly (hopefully) realize that the police car is not attempting to go around us and has taken a position directly behind us.

Here are five things you should do if the flashing red or blue lights are meant for you.

1. Don’t speed or run red lights at the beginning or end of the month. OK, if you got pulled over it’s a little late for this, but still you should know that getting pulled over at the beginning or the end of the month dramatically increases your odds of getting ‘banged’ (for the nerds who are reading this, getting ‘banged’ does not mean getting laid – it’s cop parlance for getting a ticket). As often as police departments may say that cops don’t have ‘ticket quotas’, the reality of the matter is that there is one. You won’t find it in any department manual, it may be unofficial, but trust me when I say it does exist. With that said, you have some cops that will try reach their ‘unoffical’ quota as quickly as possible at the start of the month and get it out of the way. Then you have the cops who procrastinate and wait until the end of the month to get their numbers.

Now I know what some of you may be thinking and that this may be misconstrued. I am not advocating the violation of vehicle and traffic laws during the rest of the month. We should always drive carefully and adhere to rules of the road. All I’m saying is that if you’re in the habit of rolling through stop signs instead of coming to a complete stop, don’t do it at beginning or at the end of the month.

2. Pull over as quickly and as safely as possible. And make sure, if possible, that your vehicle is not impeding the flow of traffic. If you have reason to believe that the individual trying to pull you over is not really a police officer, then I hope that you read my post on police impersonators.

3. Once you have safely pulled over, put the vehicle in ‘park’, roll down your window (especially if it’s tinted) and shut the ignition. Passengers in a vehicle with tinted windows should also roll down their windows. If it’s at night, turn on the interior lights and not just the front seat ones. Interior lights afford the officer better visibility into the vehicle, which can help him see that you’re not reaching under your seat for a weapon or something that could harm him.

4. Place your hands on the steering wheel. Passengers should also ensure that their hands are visible. And no, they don’t need to place them on top of their heads. On their laps would suffice. Remain in the vehicle unless otherwise instructed by the police officer.

5. Remain calm, be respectful and adhere to the police officer’s instructions.

Getting pulled over by the cops can be an extremely stressful situation, for both the motorist and the police officer. The motorist is worried about the cost of the ticket, points on their license, and an increase in their insurance premiums. At the same time, the cop is at a heightened level of alert, concerned about their own safety or that of their partners. Bad guys also drive cars.

Although the majority of car stops are uneventful and transpire without incident, it is still one of the most dangerous actions that police officers conduct everyday. According to data from the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, traffic incidents have been the top cause of death for police officers for 12th straight year. Not only can a cop be injured or killed by the mutts occupying the car he just pulled over, but he can also be seriously injured or killed by another motorist.

Obviously I can’t guarantee that following these tips will get you out of a ticket should you be pulled over. But speaking from my own experience in conducting hundreds of car stops during my career, a motorist that I pulled over who was concerned about my safety as well as their own and demonstrated such by doing the things that I have listed had a good shot at getting a break. That is if they didn’t have an attitude or tried to hand me their cell phones so that I could speak with their attorneys (yes, this happened) as if in some way that was going to get them out of a ticket. But that’s for my next piece on things not to do if you should get pulled over by the police.

Coffee and Donuts

Some of today’s headlines:
 
Gunman Kills Four in Long Island Pharmacy 

Another glaring and tragic example of “guns don’t kill, people kill.” It strikes me as a little peculiar that in the majority of crimes where multiple murders are committed, the weapon of choice is a handgun. Why is that? Could it be that it’s not that easy to stab or to club four people to death? Maybe we need to end the ‘War on Drugs’ and commence a ‘War on Guns’.
 
Woman pleads guilty to stashing stolen mink coat in her underwear for 3 days

Where do I begin with with this one? How could the police have missed that for three days? Was it a mink coat for a small person or dog? And who in the world would want to wear it after it spent 3 days in this woman’s underwear?

A follow up on an item in yesterday’s Coffee and Donuts segment

ATF acting director may resign over Fast and Furious program

Why is it that when the little guys f@#k up they get fired, but when it’s a higher-up they’re allowed to resign? Kenneth Melson, acting director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, should be fired along with his superiors who were aware of this boneheaded operation. He should not be allowed to ‘fall on the sword’ for his superiors, collect a pension and then earn another salary as a lobbyist for the firearms industry.

California’s death row: $4 billion, few executions
  
I wonder how many lashes Peter Moskos, author of “In Defense of Flogging”, would deem appropriate in cases of murder. Okay, I’m sure that in every case, murderers would chose flogging over spending twenty five to life in prison. Just food for thought when you consider the cost to taxpayers for housing inmates on Death Row. Similar to that old line I use to hear cops say when they were contemplating divorcing their wives, that “it was cheaper to keep her”. It seems that in the case of the death penalty, it certainly is.

Monday Coffee & Doughnuts News Roundup

I’d like to start off by wishing all the dads a Happy Belated Fathers’ Day, especially the men and women in blue who had to work yesterday keeping the rest of us safe. A special Fathers’ Day shout out to Trooper Bates of the Indiana State Police. Trooper Bates gave me my final Fathers’ Day gift yesterday when he pulled me over on U.S. 31 just outside of Rochester, Indiana. Trooper Bates conducted himself in a professional and polite manner and was kind enough to issue me a warning instead of ‘banging’ me for 15 over the limit. Why do Troopers in uniform always look like they just stepped out of a dry cleaners? How does your uniform not even get one wrinkle on it after getting in and our of your cruiser all day long? Check in tomorrow for what to do if you’re pulled over by a ‘Trooper Bates’.

So onto the news.

Wayward Policy Blamed for Agent’s Slaying

I, for one, would just like to know who was the idiot who thought that “Fast and Furious” was a sound and intelligently orchestrated operation. If Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich had to conduct an investigation to find out what the Mexican drug cartels are doing with illegally obtained weapons, then maybe he should be cleaning toilets instead of prosecuting defendants.

British Man Shoots Off Own Finger with Shotgun

On a final note, I’m happy to report that Americans have not cornered the market on morons and stupidity. It seems that the British also have their share of ‘just dumb’ people. I just want to know what this idiot would have done if the wart were on his penis instead of his finger.

Coffee and Doughnuts – News Roundup

A few of the stories that caught my eye today:

Long Island Cop Arrested for Allegedly Forcing Woman to Grope Him at Traffic Stop

Another stunning example of men in power abusing their authority. What is going on with politicians, celebrities, cops and their penises?

Homeless Drug Addict Arrested for Stabbing 82-year-old Grandmother

The real victims of our failed so called ‘war on drugs’. Drug addiction can be so powerful that 82 year old grandmas certainly don’t stand a chance. An overhaul of our failed drug policies is long over due.

Drug use among men arrested in DC falls

“These findings illustrate why we must approach our nation’s drug problem as a public health and safety problem,” the office’s director, Gil Kerlikowske, said in a statement. “Drug addiction is too often the root of crime in our communities.”

A big thank you to Gil Kerlikowske for enlightening us with this information that we already knew. Now how about telling us something that we don’t already know.

Kentucky Man Shoots 12-year-old in the Back

Seems like this guy in Kentucky must have been having a really bad day. So bad that he takes it out on a 12 year kid playing a prank by shooting him in the back with a shotgun.  That will teach that kid not to be playing childish pranks. What would the NRA say about this? “Guns don’t kill, people kill”. That includes the psychos who can easily get their hands on them.

Three Things You Should Know if You’re Ever Arrested

Today I’ll answer another query in my ‘Question of the day cause I ain’t got shit to write about’ series. Seems that people are curious as to what they should do if they or a member of their family is ever arrested. Let me start off by saying that I’m quite aware that individuals of questionable character may stumble across my blog and heed my advice. It’s not intended for them but for ‘decent folk’ who, for whatever reason, may be adding ‘bracelets’ (that’s handcuffs for those among us who are nerds) to their collection of fashion accessories. And by the way, the bad guys already learned this advice early on in ‘Mopery 101′. So here are three things you should know in the event you are ever arrested.
 
#1. Don’t resist the arrest, even if you believe it is unlawful
 
Rule number one is to never resist arrest. Besides the fact that you may get ‘tased’ or ‘maced’ or just have a ton of pain inflicted upon you, all not very pleasant experiences, it’s actually against the law in most states to resist even an unlawful arrest. So it’s better to go along quietly and peacefully and don’t do anything to add more stress to an already stressful situation. It will also work in your benefit not to have that arresting officer pissed off at you. Especially after several hours of processing where you may need to use the bathroom, or need a drink of water, want to make a call (which by the way you’re not entitled to, despite what TV says) or a chocolate bar from the vending machine to ease the hunger pangs. Remember that once you’re arrested, you no longer get to make simple decisions. Someone else decides if and when you can go to the bathroom.
 
#2. Don’t say anything - even if you are innocent

 
Whatever the reason is for being arrested, mistaken identity, false accusation, victim of circumstance or maybe you just went and did something stupid like slashing your ex’s tires, it’s important to keep your mouth shut. Invoke your right to remain silent and no matter what the cops say or what they may promise you, don’t waive that right. Fight that overwhelming impulse that comes over decent people to cooperate and confess their sins.
 
Now that is not to say that you should not give the cops information such as your name, address, date of birth, etc, etc. Refusing to cooperate on that level will only serve to delay the booking process and arraignment. And trust me when I say you want to see a Judge as soon as possible and hopefully make bail.
 
Remember that once you’ve been arrested the police are not there to help you. No matter what they say to you in that regard, their job is to gather evidence and build a strong, solid case against you that will eventually lead to a successful prosecution. And what better evidence is there than a confession or an incriminating statement made by you? The police are certainly not there to defend you.

I remember how frustrating it was for me as a Detective sitting in the ‘box’ with a suspect that I was about to interrogate and hearing them utter the dreadful words,  “I ain’t talking” or “I want a lawyer”. It was particularly frustrating in cases where there was either no or very little incriminating evidence, and eliciting a confession was crucial.

#3. Invoke your right to an attorney

Even if you should choose to cooperate in an effort to ‘clear things up’, as suggested by the police, it is wiser to answer questions with your attorney present. They are the experts and the only individuals in the process who genuinely are looking out for your interest (for a small fortune, of course).

Parents especially should pass this advice on to their teenage children and not let it become one of those things that’s never discussed. I’m not implying that your teenagers are candidates for “America’s Most Wanted” but sometimes teenagers make decisions that are not always wise. That whole peer pressure thing. Most states have laws concerning police questioning of juveniles. Basically, a juvenile cannot be questioned without the parents’ consent and presence. The problem lies in those states where teenagers as young as 16 are treated as adults by the police. Getting arrested at any age can be a traumatic and terrifying experience unless you’re a career scum bag, and it’s even more so for a 16-18 year old. If we can’t always rely on teenagers to make wise decisions in their everyday lives, can we trust them enough to know that it’s not always a wise thing to talk to the police should they ever be arrested? As a father and a former cop, I advised my children on many occasions as to what to do if they were ever arrested. It didn’t matter if they were right or wrong, innocent or guilty. I told them to keep their mouths shut, tell the cop you want your Mom and Dad and a lawyer.

Hopefully you will never have to live through the unpleasant experience of being arrested. But if by some unforeseeable circumstance you are, remember that “you have the right to remain silent”. Please use it.