Bill Mattos, Editor and Publisher
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster
The Farsider is an independent publication that is not
affiliated with the San Jose Police Benevolent
Assn. The SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its web site solely
for the convenience
of the retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does
not represent or reflect
the views of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or
WHAT BETTER WAY TO RING IN 2015 THAN TO LOOK BACK AT
And all you have to do to review the year that was is to
NOTE TO THOSE OF YOU WHO SUBMITTED AN ITEM FOR THE
Since our last (Dec. 18th) Farsider we have been
inundated with submissions from readers about the
protests, officer threats and safety, the NYPD police
killings, the rift between the NYPD and Mayor de Blasio,
Al Sharpton, and several other facets about the racial
divide the country is experiencing as a result of the
Ferguson and Long Island incidents. Many were op/ed
pieces from various news outlets and websites, some were
opinions from police supporters and antagonists, and
everything in between. If you submitted an item you felt
was worthy of passing along and it doesn’t appear below,
it’s only because there were far too many items sent in.
RETIRED DISPATCHER BELINDA MALDONADO
A few hours after we had gone to press with the Dec.
18th Farsider, Will Render directed our attention to an
obituary that accompanied that of Chuck Petersen’s that
was in the last Farsider. According to Will, “Belinda
Maldonado was a County Dispatcher with a very memorable
voice when working. I believe her I.D. was #212.” Paul
Salerno also spotted the obituary and sent in similar
1951 — Dec. 15, 2014
of San Jose
Maldonado joined her heavenly Father on December 15,
2014. She was born in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico
on July 20, 1951 to Miguel and Maria Maldonado, the
second of six children. Her family moved to Laredo,
Texas and then to San Jose in 1963. Belinda’s parents
taught her the importance of the love of the Lord.
Belinda knew the importance of advocating for justice.
She supported Cesar Chavez in the fight for farm worker
civil rights and was present in 1968 when Robert Kennedy
came to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church for the UFW.
Extremely bright, Belinda taught herself how to play the
piano and sing like the best of sopranos. She had an
incredible, powerful and beautiful voice. Belinda earned
a full scholarship to University of the Pacific,
Callison College, the first Latina to attend that
college in 1969, earning degrees in Anthropology,
Philosophy, and Theology and traveling to Turkey, India,
Japan, Greece, and Mexico in her studies. She married
the love of her life, Roman Razo, on September 15, 1990.
She served as a 911 dispatcher for Santa Clara County
for over thirty years, and was named Dispatcher of the
Year. Her dispatcher response techniques were used
nationally to train other dispatchers. Belinda was a
warrior to save souls. She was a local and national
preacher for the Catholic Church. She co-founded the
Hispanic Charismatic Renewal movement in the Diocese of
San Jose and was one of the first Hispanic
Evangelization teachers in the Diocese. She was also a
choir director for numerous groups and churches.
Belinda was preceded in death by her parents Maria and
Miguel. She is survived by her husband Roman, sisters
Edna, Miriam, Marvelyn and Maritza, her brother Michael,
nieces and nephews Michael, Tessia, Mayra, Karina,
Iliana, Mateo, and Emma, and many other relatives in the
United States and Mexico.
A funeral Mass and a Rosary will occur at Our Lady of
Guadalupe Church, 2020 E. San Antonio St. San Jose, CA
94116. Rosary: December 18, 7 pm. Funeral: December 19,
YES, SJPD WAS REPRESENTED AT THE NYPD MEMORIAL
Ed. — The letter below was published in some of the Bay
Area’s major newspapers.
Yesterday, San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose Police
Officer Association presidents penned an open letter to
the residents of our cities. The increasing violence
during protests and assassination of two New York
Officers required a response from our region. We must
remind our communities that our officers remain in harms
way during these protests that continue into the
Please read our letter below and stay safe this holiday
Letter to the Residents of San Francisco, San Jose and
presidents of the three largest police unions in the Bay
Area, our overriding responsibility is to ensure that
each and every police officer we represent makes it home
to his or her family after every shift. Police officers
must swear to uphold our constitution, and we also take
seriously our responsibility to protect the First
Amendment rights of the public we serve. Unfortunately,
recent events threaten to bring these two great
responsibilities into conflict.
Our members and their families have been shaken to the
core by the brutal slayings of two New York City police
officers and a Tarpon Springs, Florida police officer.
All of our members are on heightened alert. In the line
of duty deaths of police officers are up significantly:
120 police officers have already paid the ultimate price
for protecting their communities in 2014.
The protests that followed the grand jury decisions in
Missouri and New York are a legitimate expression of our
First Amendment traditions. The reaction is not
unexpected but the vilification of front-line public
servants by some politicians and media pundits has
been demoralizing and unjust. Public safety in the Bay
Area and the nation will be a subject of major debate
going forward and we will each participate vigorously in
But what few have acknowledged until now is that too
often the legitimate expression of views has devolved
into vilification and violence against this nation's
front-line public safety servants. Demonstrators in New
York chanted in unison: "What do we want? Dead cops!
When do we want it? Now!" That was disgraceful. So, too,
was witnessing protest marches in the Bay Area
degenerate into violence, destruction and mob rule.
Despite the efforts of organizers, too often protests
were hijacked by shameful cowards who take refuge behind
the truly law abiding demonstrators while destroying
property and injuring our officers.
The overwhelming majority of our members-who represent
the most diverse police departments in the nation-bear
such malice in dignified silence. Even following the
murder of three of their own, our officers continue with
their duty, answer your calls, respond to your crises,
fulfill their mission, and honor their commitment to the
people of San Francisco, San Jose, and Oakland.
In short, they will always be there when you need them.
In return, as their "voices" we simply ask that you join
them in a cooperative effort to keep our streets safe,
and to engage in constructive dialogue that calls for a
common sense approach to very complex issues.
May we all take this holiday season as a time to reflect
and pray for one another and search for solutions
together as the law enforcement community honors those
who have fallen in the line of duty.
SJPOA President Elect
THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF THE CITY AND SJPD
This article from the Mercury News is about the open
letter referenced in the POA Membership Alert above.
Union Leaders Lament ‘Vilification’
—Presidents call for dialogue with protesters—
News — Dec. 23, 2014
The presidents of the Bay Area’s three largest municipal
police unions warned Tuesday that anti-police sentiment
had reached a dangerous level and called for
“constructive dialogue” to address concerns being raised
across the nation over the treatment of minorities by
The two-page open letter to residents from union
presidents in San Jose, San Francisco and Oakland was
noticeably milder than comments coming from union
leaders in New York City last weekend following the
slaying of two officers in their patrol car by a man who
claimed on social media that he wanted to avenge the
high-profile deaths of two unarmed black men by police.
The union presidents didn’t demand a cessation of the
protests that have persisted for weeks following the
refusal of grand juries in Missouri and New York City to
indict police officers in the killings of Michael Brown
and Eric Garner. They also didn’t blame individual
politicians for protests that have at times turned
violent, with agitators vandalizing stores, setting
street fires and pelting officers with rocks and
But the union leaders wrote that although the protests
began as a “legitimate expression of views,” they had
“devolved into vilification and violence against this
nation’s front-line public safety servants.”
And the officers saw parallels between some of the
anti-police chants from protesters in New York and the
actions and rhetoric of protesters in the Bay Area.
Graffiti spray-painted during protests in Oakland has
called for the killing of police, as have individual
protesters, said Oakland Police Officers’ Association
President Barry Donelan. Last week, a sign on Interstate
580 memorializing the in-the-line-of-duty deaths of four
Oakland police officers in 2009 was defaced and torn
“The whole environment is about attacking police
officers,” said Donelan, who penned the letter with
Martin Halloran of San Francisco’s police union and Paul
Kelly of San Jose’s police union. “There needs to be a
dialogue, but burning down cities is not acceptable,
attacking police officers is not acceptable, and
vilifying police work as a vocation is not acceptable.”
While San Jose has not seen the same level of
anti-police sentiment, the San Jose Police Department
recently faced scrutiny over one officer’s anti-protest
Assistant chief Eddie Garcia said police brass stood
united with the union in its call for dialogue. “We do
not condone hateful rhetoric as (it) proves
counterproductive to all we are trying to achieve with
Protests have tapered off a bit over the past week, but
another march is scheduled for Christmas Day, and
organizers said they have no plans to stop.
“Until Darren Wilson and other killer cops are held
accountable for racist murders and attacks, these
protests will continue and the movement will grow,” said
Yvette Felarca of the group By Any Means Necessary.
• • • •
Guess who's back...
Look who the new Mayor has appointed as a "part-time
senior policy adviser, mostly on fiscal reform, public
safety and pension issues."
Names Key Staff Members
—Chamber of commerce executive appointed to lead new
News — Jan. 1, 2015
SAN JOSE —
San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo announced his new
administration’s top staff Wednesday, a list that
reflects a continuation of the city’s current leadership
and the business interests that supported his election.
Perhaps the most pivotal appointment is Liccardo’s new
chief of staff: Jim Reed, no relation to the outgoing
Mayor Chuck Reed, and best known as the vice president
of public policy for the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber
“If I was the chamber, I would be pretty delighted,”
said Larry Stone, Santa Clara County’s assessor. “He’s
got business acumen, and if Sam is going to accomplish
the objectives he outlined in his book and in his
campaign — which are the same things — he’s got to have
somebody who understands the business community.”
Stone said he believes Liccardo selected Reed because of
Reed’s political savvy — he has served as a city
councilman and mayor of Scotts Valley — but noted he
also has management skills to handle a large staff.
“If you are going to be the chief of staff to the mayor
of the 10th largest city in the country, you have to
have political instincts and be a solid manager,” Stone
But Liccardo said Reed impressed him because of his
ability for “reaching across the aisle” not only in
navigating city bureaucracy, but in understanding “how
to be respectful of political sensitivities on every
“He’s savvy in dealing and engaging with people who
don’t necessarily agree with him, but you can still walk
away from the conversation respecting Jim and his point
of view,” Liccardo said.
The new mayor will need someone like that as he moves
ahead with implementing contentious pension reform with
San Jose public safety employees and multiple union
contract negotiations up for renewal in 2015.
Still, Liccardo emphasized that “the responsibility for
reaching out to people who consider themselves
adversaries is mine — it’s not a job I delegate,” he
said. “I pick up the phone and make the phone call.”
In addition to Reed, who is a registered Republican,
Liccardo, a Democrat in the nonpartisan office,
appointed Pete Constant, a two-term San Jose city
councilman and former San Jose police officer, to serve
as a part-time senior policy adviser, mostly on fiscal
reform, public safety and pension issues.
Constant, also a Republican, was known to spar with
Liccardo over the years, mostly on regulation issues,
including the city’s successful implementation of bans
on plastic bags, bottles and smoking in city parks.
Constant said he believes the city should educate the
public, not legislate bans, over the issues.
“You can concentrate on your differences, or your
similarities, and Sam and I have chosen to concentrate
on our similarities,” said Constant, who cites their
teamwork on fiscal and pension reform.
Ru Weerakoon, a holdover appointee of outgoing Mayor
Reed’s, will continue as senior policy adviser for land
use and economic development.
Ragan Henninger, who has worked with Liccardo, most
recently as his City Council office chief of staff and
as his campaign manager, will be a senior policy adviser
focused on environment, housing, budget and economic
Michelle McGurk, another Chuck Reed appointee, will
continue her role as a senior policy adviser and public
information officer for Liccardo for what both say will
be an interim period. Several members of Liccardo’s
former City Council office staff will be working for him
as mayor, as well.
Liccardo, 44, said the appointee list isn’t finished.
“It’s a work in progress — we are still building the
team and we have several more hires to make.”
Included are his budget director and a new senior
position called director of strategic partnerships,
which he said is focused on partnerships with
foundations, nonprofits and the private sector to
marshal resources needed to move initiatives forward —
like expanding after-school programs — that Liccardo
said the city will not be able to implement alone.
Liccardo also said he is talking to people with labor
backgrounds about a position on his staff.
That’s good news to people like San Jose State political
science assistant professor Garrick Percival, who cited
a noticeable absence of labor backgrounds in the group
of appointees. That doesn’t mean, he said, that labor
issues won’t be addressed by this new administration.
“But I think people come with a set of certain
perspectives, and I don’t think that labor interests are
going to be at the top of the agenda, given the makeup
of the staff as we know it today.”
• • • •
You can bet there will be idiots who will look at this
headline and believe that an increase in the number of
cops needed to keep San Jose safe is no longer needed...
the Decline in S.J.
—Homicides, thefts drop, but new mayor sees ‘a lot of
work to do’—
News — Jan. 1, 2015
SAN JOSE —
In a year in which fears about rising crime paced the
city’s community and political conversations, the
numbers show a swirl of progress and stagnation.
Property crimes in the city were down 4.5 percent in the
first 11 months of 2014, after dropping 10 percent in
2013. But the numbers are still elevated after a recent
peak in 2012, when San Jose outpaced the state and
national rates for the first time in more than a decade.
Violent crime is slightly up in the past year, by just
over 1 percent, though the 32 homicides recorded in 2014
was a pronounced drop from the 44 tallied in 2013. It
broke a three-year streak of at least 40 killings, the
longest such stretch in two decades.
though burglaries and auto thefts are trending downward,
their specter loomed mightily over the past year, when
public safety permeated the mayoral election in a place
that a decade ago was toasted as the safest large city
in the United States.
“The numbers may be heading in the right direction, but
statistics don’t mean much to somebody who has
experienced a burglary on the block, or worse, in their
own home,” incoming Mayor Sam Liccardo said. “We have a
lot of work to do.”
Neighborhood leaders are taking on some of that work on
their own, spurred by ongoing police understaffing and
the ensuing lags in response times to crimes that tend
to resonate more in a predominantly suburban city.
“I think the citizens’ awareness of crime is affected
more by burglaries and auto thefts because it’s
happening to them and their friends,” said Officer James
Gonzales, the new vice president of the San Jose Police
Jose police investigators work a homicide scene in front
home on East San Antonio Street on Jan. 2, 2014. The
saw its yearly homicide total drop from 44 in 2013 to 32
summer, burglars rifled through Brian’s suburban San
Jose home, making him a target of what has fast become
the city’s most prominent crime. He called police and
cataloged his losses, as have many of his neighbors. But
as a resident for more than a quarter-century who
remembered better times, he felt compelled to do more.
So he tapped his data analysis background and banded
with other residents to create <sanjosecrimemaps.com> to
track, prevent and help solve such thefts in the wake of
chronic police understaffing that has sapped the city’s
ability to promptly investigate burglaries and auto
“Residents are fed up with these crimes,” said Brian,
who asked that his full name be withheld out of safety
concerns tied to his anti-crime efforts. “I always knew
this as the safest city around, and then I got hit (by
April 25, San Jose police officers search a yard on
Marten Avenue for two armed robbery suspects who
reportedly fled through the Mt. Pleasant neighborhood.
rapidly become a grass-roots guru in burglary
prevention, using community websites to dish out tips
about how residents can secure their homes, watch out
for each other and readily identify burglars’ tendencies
when they case neighborhoods.
“The only people who don’t want this known are the bad
guys,” he said.
The efforts of Brian and other residents have spurred a
surge in neighborhood vigilance credited with
identifying suspects in a handful of serial burglaries
during the past few months.
Chief Larry Esquivel sees stories like Brian’s as
residents coming to grips with lackluster police
staffing and seeing no end in sight. But he said they
shouldn’t plan for that being the status quo.
“They’re doing it really out of necessity. They’ve
accepted that to a certain extent, with the hope that
things are going to improve,” Esquivel said. “We need to
be optimistic but also realistic with what we can do.”
The relatively modest number of homicides is a credit to
a city of nearly 1 million that boasts the country’s
lowest violent-crime rate of any large city. But police
experts contend homicides offer a pinhole view of city
violence and consider aggravated assaults, which are
also up about 1 percent, more representative because
they occur far more frequently and presage killings.
Elsewhere in the South Bay and Peninsula, property
crimes are generally decreasing, with cities such as
Sunnyvale, Mountain View, Palo Alto, Redwood City, Daly
City and Belmont, as well as unincorporated San Mateo
County, reporting projected drops for the year.
Violent crime in those areas is similarly remaining
steady as it is in San Jose, where the battle over
police pension and benefit reforms coincides with a
force that numbers just over 1,000, nearly 30 percent
smaller than it was six years ago, and promises to
continue simmering in the coming year.
Liccardo acknowledged challenging negotiations ahead
between the city and the union.
“That process is going to take time,” Liccardo said. “In
the meantime, we need to more effectively use resources
we have, and that requires a willingness to be
innovative and do things differently.”
He cited increased application of data-driven policing
and extending patrol rotations to give officers more
time for community policing, which he and Gonzales both
say would mark a return to tactical staples pioneered by
SJPD in the 1980s.
“Predictive policing is nothing new, just a new name for
putting cops on the ‘dot,’ ” Gonzales said. “You can
have all the dots you want, but if you don’t have cops
to put on them, it’s just a piece of paper telling you
where the crime is.
“We’re essentially a trauma ward, always having to
I'm sitting at my desk pretending to be hard at work on
a background investigation (fooling the Mrs.) when I'm
actually reading the Farsider. I watched the video about
Christmas Napkin Folding and I thought to myself, I can
do that. So I get a napkin and give it a whirl. Didn't
happen on the first try, or the second. To be honest, I
didn't get it on the third or fourth try either (don't
tell anyone). After about an hour of stopping the video
and reviewing it, I finally got it. I know I'm slow,
must have aixelsyd redrosid or something like that.
Anyway, I showed Mrs. Harris the fruit of my hard work
and boy was she surprised! Over 32 years and I am still
amazing her (and me).
By the way, a number of officers have asked me over the
last couple years if I background for SJPD. The answer
is no, never have. Other than the Los Altos PD (Tuck &
Andy), most of my work is in Santa Cruz County where I
live and play.
Merry Christmas, Bill.
If anyone wants to compete with Buck and correctly fold
a Christmas napkin in less than five tries, here is the
LINK to the video.
• • • • •
I’ve seen the photo on the left many times and wondered
what happened to these poor people who lost everything
and took whatever job they could to survive. Now we see
that at least one of them, Florence Thompson, made it
out of the Great Depression OK.
• • • • •
Thanks for all of your hard work on the Farsider. I
really enjoy keeping up with things. My cousin, Norv
Pulliam, does not have a computer, so I print the
Farsider each week and mail it to him.
I seem to remember a blurb in the Farsider about a
retiree pension preservation program in conjunction with
filing taxes. I think it had something to do with
medical payments, premiums or something.
Do you remember this? I’ve been searching through the
Archives, but I am obviously not remembering enough to
complete a competent search (might have something to do
with being a lieutenant, or something).
Thanks! And have a Great New Year!!
Sorry, Gary, but I seem
to be suffering from the same brain phart you are.
Unfortunately, your description doesn’t ring a bell.
Perhaps it will jog the memory of one of our nearly
1,000 readers and they will send you an email. Or
perhaps the item to which you are referring appeared in
the POA’s Vanguard or the Retirees’ Assn.’s Billy &
Spanner. Whatever or wherever, say Hi to Norv for the
rest of us when you next see him. Hope you both have a
POLICE & FIRE RETIREES ASSN. NEWSLETTER NOW AVAILABLE
electronic version of the Billy & Spanner is now
available on-line. Thank you to all who have agreed to
receive the on-line version of the newsletter. You can
read the newsletter by clicking
to 1 p.m.
4th St., San Jose
FOLLOWING THE WHITE HAT
Bill reported that he will be working as an alternate at
the Arizona at Carolina game that will air on ESPN this
coming Saturday at 1:20 p.m. PST.
THERE SHOULD BE MORE OF THIS…
AND LESS OF THIS…
fans were familiar with New York Jets Center Nick
Mangold, but that all changed a few Sundays ago. As his
team took the field to face New England, Nick replaced
his helmet with an NYPD baseball cap in support of the
New York Police Dept. Click
HERE for the story.
FIFTEEN MINUTES OF FAME AND THEN SOME…
Many of you
should remember Caren Carlisle (Hare), badge 2320. Her
career that began in 1982 included numerous assignments
in Patrol, Training, SAIU, Background Investigations, DA
Investigations with Mike Thompson, Homicide with Mark
McIninch, City Attorney Investigations and Court
Liaison. She retired in 2009 after 26 years of service.
During her tenure in the Training Unit, Caren also
published a column in the Insider titled “To Your
Health.” She was also a champion swimmer who hosted the
first World Police and Fire Games Swimming event in 1985
and was such a standout that PAAF inducted her into its
Athletic Hall of Fame.
Caren has been happily married for 18 years to James
Hare who will start work as a Research Analyst for
Gartner in 2015. The family also includes a 16-year-old
daughter (Christianne) who attends WGHS and lots of cats
Given her past, it would be fair to say that Caren has
received her fifteen minutes of fame on several
occasions, but a few weeks ago that experience was
elevated to the national level when she appeared on the
Today Show with Al Roker.
THIS clip will show you why…
say Hi and/or offer Caren your congrats?
15-YEAR VETERAN SAN JOSE COP MAKES THE CBS EVENING NEWS
Officer’s View of Violent Protests
receiving his moment in the national spotlight this week
was SJPD Det. James Gonzalez who was interviewed for the
CBS Evening News on Tuesday. Click
HERE to watch the video, but be patient as you will
first need to sit through a short ad. Should you not
have the patience for that, the text of the interview
was transcribed below the video. (2:10)
P.S. As of press time there were 22 posted comments by
viewers about the video that represent the root of the
us (cops) versus them (protestors) problem. Clicking on
the “Comments” button will display the comments on your
DO YOU SEE THE COMMON DENOMINATOR IN THESE PICS?
professionally printed signs have been showing up at
protests from New York City to Los Angeles. So what is
the common denominator? It’s printed at the bottom of
every sign. So who or what is revcom? Click on this link
like Mike Thompson did and have a look. <www.revcom.us>
SO JUST WHO IS THIS GUY?
to an email from Bob Tenbrink, here are ten interesting
facts you may not know about New York City’s Democratic
Mayor Bill de Blasio, who was elected in 2013 with a
whopping 72% of the vote.
• Bill de Blasio was born Warren Wilhelm, Jr., on May 8,
1961. He first changed his name to the hyphenated Warren
de Blasio-Wilhelm, adding his mother’s maiden name. In
2002, he dropped the “Warren” and the “Wilhelm,” and
changed his name for a second time to what it is
currently, Bill de Blasio.
• Bill de Blasio was the campaign manager for Hillary
Clinton’s Senate campaign in 2000.
• Bill de Blasio was a fervent supporter of the Marxist
Sandinista government in Nicaragua in the 1980′s, a
government that was backed by the Communist Soviet Union
• At the height of Cold War tension, while still a
student at New York University, de Blasio toured the
Communist Soviet Union in 1983.
• His first job was in 1984 with the NYC Department of
• Bill de Blasio received a master’s degree in
International and Public Affairs at Columbia University,
the same school attended by Barack Obama.
• Bill de Blasio ran Democratic New York Congressman
Charlie Rangel’s re-election campaign in 1994.
• In 1994, Bill de Blasio married a lesbian activist,
Chirlane McCray. The newlyweds honeymooned in Fidel
Castro’s Communist Cuba.
• In 2009, de Blasio’s election campaign to be NYC’s
third “Public Advocate” was supported by the
pro-Communism, Working Families Party.
• Both of de Blasio’s parents were communists, leading
historian Ron Radosh to describe him as a “bonafide red
HERE to go to the website that was the source of the
above info about the far left mayor who was elected by a
huge majority of Gotham’s voters. (And you thought San
Francisco was the most liberal city in the U.S.?)
BE GRATEFUL THIS LEFTIE ISN’T A STATE LAWMAKER
It wasn’t a surprise that this op/ed piece by an atheist
who teaches at Berkeley doesn’t come across as an ardent
supporter of the police…
Rethink State Laws Toward Police Transparency
Thomas Peele — Investigative Reporter
News — Dec. 28, 2014
Thomas Peele is an investigative reporter
for the Mercury News and teaches a class
on public records at the UC Berkeley
Graduate School of Journalism.
phrase “the truth will set you free” comes from the
Bible, a book I have no relationship with because I’m an
atheist. But let’s interpret it not in the context of
religious dogma but rather one of larger meaning about
How free are we when laws are designed to keep us
ignorant? Some would enable the tearing of scientific
facts from school books. Others keep more details about
CIA torture a state secret.
In California, laws allow police to hide misconduct
findings behind claims that revealing what’s in their
personnel files should never be publicly seen. That law
now needs to be viewed in the context of national
outrage about the killings of unarmed African-American
men by police in Missouri, New York and elsewhere.
But as the country engages in new debates over police
misconduct, California’s special-interest laws
protecting cops’ personnel records should be examined
It’s simply bad public policy that serves only cops.
Want cops to behave better? Then require their behavior,
and what comes of it, to be disclosed.
Aside from the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner,
the killing of 12-year-old Tamir Rice by Cleveland
Police Officer Timothy Loehmann last month is incredibly
troubling, especially considering that a video shows the
fatal shot being fired just one and a half to two
seconds after Loehmann got out of a cruiser just feet
Yes, police were responding to reports of someone
waiving what turned out to be a toy gun. Cleveland
police claimed Loehmann told Rice three times to raise
his hands. The video shows that to be very doubtful.
Police also claimed Rice was near other people and
perhaps a threat. The video shows he was alone.
But here’s the rub. Ohio has no law blocking the release
of police personnel files. Within days of Rice’s
killing, it was reported that a suburban department had
dismissed Rice for incompetence, raising immense
questions about how Cleveland Police hired him.
Department leaders later admitted they hadn’t checked
Documents about Loehmann’s brief stint with the
Independence, Ohio, police show that he became
“distracted” and “weepy” during firearms training, Ohio
media reported. “He could not follow simple directions,
could not communicate clear thoughts nor recollections,
and his handgun performance was dismal,” a deputy chief
wrote. “I do not believe time, nor training, will be
able to change or correct the deficiencies.”
But if Loehmann had been a California cop, such truths
about him would remain locked away.
That police demand absolute support no matter the sins
of the few plays directly to the secrecy. There’s no
gray. Just blue — or wrong.
We saw this last weekend following the horrid murders of
two New York City officers. Cops turned their backs en
masse on Mayor Bill de Blasio because he supported
protesters angry that the cop who choked Garner to death
The head of the police union said the blood of the slain
officers was on de Blasio’s hands. Former New York
Governor George Pataki said about the same thing in a
tweet and tied in U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder,
because, he, too, said he understood those angry about
Brown and Garner’s deaths.
The same either-you’re-with-us-or-against-us mentality
is pervasive in policing everywhere. You saw that in the
idiotic tweets of San Jose cop Phillip White, who
blathered into the ether: “Threaten me or my family and
I will use my God given and law appointed right and duty
to kill you.”
San Jose is in the midst of deciding how to discipline
White. Many are calling for his firing. Even given the
national attention scorn he brought upon himself, what
his department does with him will be a secret under
In Ohio it would be public. Here, the truths you don’t
know cannot set you free.
FROM THE "BETTER LATE THAN NEVER" DEPT.
Carm Grande ran across this 49-year-old holiday poem and
thought some of you "old timers" might enjoy the
modified version of "The Night Before Christmas" that
originally appeared in the Dec. 20, 1965 edition of the
POA "Vanguard." That we failed to include it prior to
Christmas was an oversight.
the Week Before Christmas
the week before Christmas and all through the City,
crime rate was up, the figures weren't pretty.
shots were hung on the blackboard with care,
that the "bad guys" would be caught in their lair.
policemen were working all night with no break,
visions of good arrests to keep them awake.
in the office to see what was up,
canine and I settled down for a cup.
over the air there arose such a clatter,
it way down to see what was the matter.
usual traffic was all that was heard,
Family at Willow and Bird."
waved to the car hop and turned on my lights,
drove to my beat to take in the sights.
what to my wondering eyes did appear,
miniature H-car and eight tiny reindeer.
little old driver with so much to say,
in an instant it must be McCay.
rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
whistled and shouted and called them by name.
Rich, now Jim, now Mike and now Fred,
on Tom, on Ron and Ted."
So up to
the eastside the coursers they flew,
sled full of shakedowns and Dale McCay too.
over the air came a "Code 33,"
robbery occurred at King and McKee."
traffic was heavy with deuces and movers,
stuck to my quadrant like J. Edgar Hoover.
description was lacking, no direction of travel,
get away sure with this mess to unravel.
in a twinkling I heard on the roof,
prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
stuck out my head on car roof I found,
robbery gang was all gagged and bound.
looked toward the heavens I saw for myself,
eight tiny reindeer and old E. Dale himself.
squint of his eye and a twist of his head,
gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight.
into service or I'll see you tonight!
THE BEST OF THE LATE NITE JOKES
President Obama announced that the U.S. is working to
improve its relationship with Cuba in an effort to
normalize full diplomatic relations. For instance, today
they released one of our prisoners and in return we sent
back one of their shortstops.
The White House will ease diplomatic relations with
Cuba. When asked how he’ll celebrate, Obama said, “Smoke
a Cuban cigar, no I mean smoke a regular cigarette — oh,
I’ll just have some water, I guess, I don’t know.”
Despite Russia's move to raise interest rates this week,
the value of the ruble has continued to crash. Russia's
economy is so bad, Edward Snowden had to put government
secrets on Craigslist.
In an interview, President Obama said he recently
deejayed a small dance party at the White House. Obama
has a lot in common with deejays. He takes requests and
then completely ignores them.
Sony Pictures has canceled the release of “The
Interview” due to continued threats from hackers. This
means the hackers have accomplished their goal of making
everyone in the world want to see “The Interview.”
Everyone’s weighing in on Sony’s cancellation of “The
Interview.” Mitt Romney suggested the film should be
released online for free. Donald Trump said the studio
has no courage or guts. Chris Christie said, “Either
way, I'm having a large bucket of popcorn.”
During a recent interview, President Obama revealed that
his favorite movie this year was “Boyhood.” It makes
sense. If there's one thing Obama can identify with,
it's aging several years over the course of a couple of
President Obama said his favorite movie this year was
“Boyhood.” When asked what his second-favorite movie
was, he said, “'The Interview.' No, definitely not 'The
Interview.' I didn’t see 'The Interview.'”
The White House hosted its annual Hanukkah party and
everything was going great until Biden pulled on a
rabbi's beard and said, "You're not Santa."
The U.S. is re-establishing relations with Cuba. But
before President Obama can lift the embargo, it will
need approval from the Republican-controlled Congress —
or as Republicans who called Obama said, "Close, but no
It is rumored that Kanye West spent $74,000 on Christmas
presents for his little baby daughter, North. Then North
said, "Somebody get a picture of his face when I just
play with the boxes."
Graceland is going to auction off Elvis Presley's
first-ever recordings from 1953 — or as people now
coming to America from Cuba put it, "Whoa! What's that
hot new sound?"
During a recent Q & A with children, first lady Michelle
Obama said that what she wants for Christmas is to sleep
in late. Which is why this year Biden promised not to
jump on her bed when it's time to open presents.
Google has found that Ouija boards are one of this
year's most popular toys. You know, because it wasn't
bad enough dealing with your LIVING relatives.
Everybody celebrates holidays differently. This year
many people are traveling to theme parks. They're going
to events like Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party and
the Dr. Seuss-inspired Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular.
And of course, the most popular event — go play while
mommy and daddy drink.
KFC in Japan will continue its tradition of offering
customers a Christmas dinner which includes chicken,
wine, cake, and champagne. For no extra charge, you can
tell the cashier how you didn't see your life ending up
Obama announced that he's going to reopen diplomatic
relations with Cuba. He wants to act before Seth Rogen
makes a movie about Castro.
The Dalai Lama said there should be no more Dalai Lamas
after his death. That's particularly bad news for his
son, Steve Lama.
A new report says ISIS is trying to recruit
professionals like doctors, engineers, and accountants.
Sorry, kids, even ISIS says they're not hiring liberal
It is officially one week until Christmas. That means if
you're a guy, you have six days until you have to start
We're having our office Christmas party tonight. Just
like last year, I'm going to get drunk, make a fool of
myself, and then go to the office Christmas party.
probably heard about the big prisoner swap with Cuba. A
man who has been incarcerated in Havana for five years
is back home in the United States. And we sent them some
prisoners. The deal still has to be approved by
President Obama and Bud Selig.
Those North Korean hackers are at it again. Earlier
today they leaked Santa's naughty list.
Happy birthday to Pope Francis. He was born 78 years ago
in Argentina. He's not really named Pope Francis. That's
just his stage name. His real name is, of course, Carlos
They had a big birthday party for the Pope at the
Vatican City Olive Garden.
Sony has canceled the big Seth Rogen movie, "The
Interview." North Koreans hacked their email so Sony
said, "Now we can't show anybody the movie." I'm
disappointed. I think this is the wrong thing to do. And
I hear in the film Meryl Streep is great as Kim Jong Un.
If Sony's not going to show "The Interview," that's it.
No more North Korean movies for me.
Last year, my son gave me a delightful gift for
Christmas. He took an egg carton, emptied it out, and
made me a pill organizer.
Here's what we know about Santa. He sees you when you're
sleeping. He knows when you're awake. He knows if you’ve
been bad or good. I think he's with the NSA.
Do you remember when you found out there was no Santa
Claus? I was so upset I didn't think I'd be able to do
Be very careful if you're out shopping because of the
sidewalk vendors. They're selling inexpensive items —
counterfeit watches, counterfeit handbags, actual Knicks
President Obama and his family are spending the holidays
in Hawaii, and while they're gone, they got a fence
jumper to house sit. Tomorrow, he will be in Hawaii
playing golf with Raul Castro and the Pope.
The Russian economy is tanking. It's gotten so bad that
today Vladimir Putin had to pawn his stolen Super Bowl
ring. And Putin will finance his next invasion on
Economists believe there are three reasons why the
Russian economy is doing so poorly. One, economic
sanctions are working. Number two, low-price oil. And
number three, Lindsay Lohan has quit drinking vodka.
House announced plans to begin normalizing relations
with Cuba — this as we're awkwardizing relations with
The Pope is 78 today — old enough to watch CBS.
Cardinals threw the Pope a surprise party today. They
hid behind his hat.
Tomorrow night will be my final night hosting this show.
'Twas the night before I finished and all through CBS
employees are stealing office supplies.
One year from today, the new "Star Wars" movie opens.
Mark my words — I'll be there at that movie, probably
The "Star Wars" movie is coming out. Disney has kept the
details of the movie under wraps because they're not
The new “Hobbit” movie opened. Hobbits are tiny
creatures that speak a funny language. We need them more
than ever now that "Honey Boo Boo" is over. And it's the
last time we'll see Bilbo and Gandalf and Blitzen and
Fido and Boomer and Jar-Jar.
This is the last show, of course, of "The Late Late
Show." I really didn't know what to do. I thought I'd do
a monologue. Then I thought: Well why? I don't have
anything else left to say.
The people that made this show are you. You came to a
show that — let's be honest, a bit of a fixer-upper. And
it kind of stayed that way.
I think that what we've managed to do here is make
something that wasn't here before. So in that sense
maybe it is a piece of art. It didn't exist. Now it does
and you'll be able to find it forever on YouTube or
wherever. No, sorry. What I meant to say is the CBS
I wanted to do this show and now we've done this show.
And if you will indulge me in whatever I do next I'd be
very grateful because my kids are still young.
hackers are threatening to attack theaters that show
Seth Rogen's new comedy about an attempt on North Korean
dictator Kim Jong Un's life. In response, the big
theater chains won't show the movie. They should be
ashamed of themselves. The idea that there are North
Korean terror cells in the U.S. is ridiculous. If there
are any North Koreans in America, that's only because
After the theaters backed out, Sony decided to cancel
the release of the movie entirely and nobody knows if
the movie will be seen. The only way we're ever going to
see it is to hack into Sony. If only there was a group
that knew how to do that.
If the North Koreans are going to stop one of our movies
being shown, why couldn't it be "Love Actually," which
my wife and her friends have in our living room every
The message this sends is that if you really scare us,
we'll do what you want. Poor Seth Rogen. I heard he's so
stressed out by this that he's been smoking marijuana.
"Star Wars: Episode VII" comes out exactly one year from
today — as long as we don't get threats from Darth
Christmas is only one week from tonight. That means you
better start practicing you're "Oh my God, I love it"
Christmas is a strange holiday. It's Jesus' birthday. I
didn't get him anything.
Nobody knows Jesus' exact birthday because he refuses to
sign up for Facebook.
A new poll
about the 2016 election shows that just 27 percent of
voters would be likely to support Chris Christie. And
only 4 percent of chairs.
After closing their final session, the outgoing 113th
Congress has an approval rating of just 16 percent. To
give you some perspective, Cosby is at 17.
Today a trailer was released for a new documentary about
the Backstreet Boys. Unfortunately it was the one they
were living in.
A Salvation Army bell ringer in Virginia was injured
when an 87-year-old man accidentally ran him over. He
was taken to the hospital once the applause died down.
President Obama announced yesterday that he's pardoning
12 convicted felons. Political experts say the move
could have huge implications for your fantasy football
Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a press
conference today that it was too early to decide if he
will run for re-election in 2018. But he says it’s not
too early to decide how much he wins by.
The Kris and Bruce Jenner divorce was made official
today. They ask only that the media allow them to handle
this family matter publicly.
An olive oil bar has opened in Brooklyn. It offers more
than 40 different kinds of olive oil. If you'd like to
know more, wait until your girlfriend drags you there.
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE AS OF DEC. 20, 2014
The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox
• Is Congress giving
Apache land to a foreign mining corporation?
• Can you win an
Audi R8 by liking and sharing a Facebook post?
• Is "emordnilap" a
real word commonly found in dictionaries?
• A video supposedly shows
two hikers walking on a lake of crystal clear ice.
• Did Jay Z buy the
Los Angeles Dodgers, and is he moving the team back
Pope Francis say it's not necessary for people to
believe in God to be good?
• Did a terrorist warn a nice stranger to avoid an
• Is the Christmas toy
'Elf on the Shelf' run by the NSA?
• Was Rob O'Neill, the
Navy SEAL who shot Osama bin Laden, targeted in a
gang home invasion?
• Do photographs show toys from
Christmas drives for the needy that were exchanged
at Walmart in order to purchase beer and cigarettes?
Michael Jordan say that he didn't care about kids
who die trying to buy his shoes?
• Can a combination of
Motrin and Robitussin cause a fatal drug interaction
• Are gang members disguising
real guns as toys?
• Has AMC agreed to bring Beth Greene back to
The Walking Dead?
• Did the Smithsonian destroy recovered skeletons of
giant humanoids to preserve the narrative of
Pringles brand potato chips contain a chemical that
is known to cause cancer in humans?
• Has the murder of
Keith Passmore been ignored by the media because the
victim was white?
• E-mails from a company's
Human Resources Director document the difficulties
of office holiday party planning.
• Is the U.S. Postal Service selling
Queen Michelle Obama stamps?
• Report of a piece of
wire found inside of a candy cane in Canada.
• Game maker
Cards Against Humanity sold 30,000 boxes of bull
feces during a Black Friday promotion.
• Holiday trivia:
"Jingle Bells" was not, in fact, written as a
• Will Facebook soon make all inbox messages
publicly viewable to promote honesty?
Burger King taking Timbits off of the Tim Hortons
• Is Eminem really
giving away $5 million to one lucky fan for
• Did a
Texas plumbing company's truck end up in the hands
of a militant group in Syria?
• Was a getaway car
struck by lightning after its occupants robbed a
• Did Leah Remini find during a
prank on Ellen DeGeneres' show that her husband was
cheating on her?
• Did Pope Francis say that
animals go to heaven, too?
• Did Dr. Laura say
all pit bulls "take up space" and should be "put
• Did Oprah Winfrey
accuse Bill Cosby of drugging her and trying to rape
• Did a FedEx driver
commit suicide after crashing and destroying
hundreds of Christmas presents?
• Don't forget to visit our
Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news
stories from around the world!
Worth a Second Look
• Was the song "The Twelve Days of Christmas" created as
coded reference to important articles of the
Still Haunting the Inbox
• Check out our
25 Hottest Urban Legends list to keep abreast of
what's circulating in the on-line world.
• Visit our
Top Scams page for a list of schemes commonly used
by crooks to separate the unwary from their money.
THE LIGHTER SIDE & OTHER ODDS AND ENDS
or Full Screen recommended for YouTube videos.
• • • • •
You Gearheads and Patriots should enjoy
THIS clip from “Jay Leno’s Garage” as it shows how
much he cares for our troops. (7:32)
• • • • •
Here’s a case where a body camera on a cop was put to
good use. The 17-year-old girl in the photo below is
WATCH was happens when she gets pulled over by a cop
on patrol. (1:27)
• • • • •
Did you believe in Santa when you were seven years old?
With a little bit of clever editing by
THIS kid’s father, 7-year-old Evan did, and he has a
video to prove Santa is real. (4:13)
• • • • •
Speaking of Santa, we’re thinking he should get his
mouth washed out with soap after calling this little boy
a….well…read the exchange of letters yourself by
• • • • •
Christmas wasn’t just for humans.
THESE Sea Otters got to celebrate the holidays with
edible presents, the “frosting” of which was made of
minced clams. (1:25)
• • • • •
Lumpy challenges you to find the silverware thief at
THIS recent holiday dinner for dogs and a cat.
• • • • •
In lieu of dropping the ball in Times Square to
celebrate the new year, we would have liked to see the
Big Apple set off one of
THESE fireworks instead. Check it out. (1:46)
• • •
A rumor circulated on a Facebook cops’ site that a group
of NYPD cops who entered a Chipotle Mexican restaurant
to grab a bite were greeted by employees who made the
“hands up, don’t shoot” gesture. So was it true? Click
HERE to find out.
• • • • •
When an outfit like National Geographic sets out to
build a huge Rube Goldberg contraption with human
participants, you know it has to be something special.
• • • • •
Any of you hotshot skiers care to try
THIS ski run down a deep crevice with a GoPro
attached to your helmet so others can see how insane it
• • • • •
We’re guessing that people whose arms are all tatted up
like Niners’ quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s are going to
regret having all the body art when the Cicret Bracelet
become available. Check out
THIS video received from Lumpy. (2:44)
• • • • •
Have you ever flown Southwest Airlines with the safety
briefing presented by
THIS young lady? You would remember her if you have.
• • • • •
Over 6 million people have viewed
THIS short ad about gun safety. Have a look and you
will see why. (0:30)
• • • • •
Nina Conti is funny, imaginative, attractive and an
outstanding ventriloquist. What’s not to like? Click
HERE to see a few minutes of her act. (3:15)
• • • • •
Two women were out for a Saturday stroll. One had a
Doberman and the other had a Chihuahua. As they walked
down the street the one with the Doberman said to her
friend, "Let's go over to that bar for a drink."
The lady with the Chihuahua said, "We can't go in
there, we've got dogs with us."
The one with the Doberman said, "Sure we can, just watch
and do as I do."
They walked over to the bar and the woman with the
Doberman put on a pair of dark glasses and started to
The bouncer at the door said, "Sorry, lady, no pets
The woman said, "You don't understand. This is my
The bouncer said, "A Doberman?"
"Yes," she replied, "they're using them now. They make
very good seeing-eye dogs.”
The bouncer said, "OK, come on in."
The lady with the Chihuahua thought that convincing the
bouncer that her Chihuahua was also a seeing-eye dog may
be a bit more difficult, but thought,"What the heck,” so
she put on her dark glasses and started to walk in.
Once again the bouncer said, "Sorry, lady, no pets
The woman said, "But you don't understand, this is my
The bouncer said, "A Chihuahua?"
To which the woman replied in a loud voice, ”A
Chihuahua? They gave me a freakin’ Chihuahua?"
• • • • •
Here’s a moving rescue story from the Hope for Paws
THIS one is about a blind homeless dog who receives
surgery to restore her vision. (3:34)
• • • • •
THIS second Hope for Paws rescue story should be
worth a few minutes of your time if you like dogs.
• • • • •
Derby was born with deformed front legs, and
THIS short video shows how prosthetics made with a
3-D printer allowed him to run for the first time. Have
a look. (3:03)
• • • • •
Watch what happens when
THIS dancing puppy sees its owner arrive at the
kennel to pick her up. (0:29)
• • • • •
Remember that Honda chain reaction ad from a few years
HERE'S a similar advertisement by Beneful that
features four furry four-legged cuties. (1:20)
• • • • •
Have you ever given any thought to having a horse as a
house pet? Watch
THIS clip about “Einstein” and you may. (3:33)
• • • • •
On a far more serious note, remembering World War I is
the theme of this photo essay from “The Atlantic”
website received from Russ Jones. If you choose to view
the highly detailed photos from almost 100 years ago by
HERE, you may need to give the site a few moments to
• • • • •
Do you have an interest in UFOs? If the answer is yes,
or even sort of, you might want to visit
THIS page of the Huffington Post website and check
out what it calls “The Year in UFOs and ETs.”
• • • • •
If you are familiar with the music of “Les Misérables,”
you should enjoy
THIS Britain’s Got Talent contribution from Alice
Murphy. You know it has to be an outstanding performance
when it receives a standing ovation from all the judges,
including Simon Cowell. (6:39)
• • • • •
Our first Tip of the Week for 2015 comes from the Crazy
Russian Hacker who is back with a useful tip about those
KETCHUP cups you find in fast food eateries. If you
have ever used them, you will find this clip time well
spent. And besides, it’s good for the environment. Watch
it and you will see why. (2:39)
• • • • •
THIS really be a lake trout? According to these ice
fishermen the answer is yes, and the monster could grow
even bigger because they decided to release it back into
the lake. This should be worth a look if you like to
• • • • •
I love passing along items that deal with the whole
enchilada of what exists (a/k/a the Universe). No pun
intended, but presentations like this bring me back down
to earth on those rare occasions where I catch myself
thinking that the Universe centers around me. Click
HERE and you too can realize just how insignificant
you really are. (3:31)
P.S. If that video piqued your interest, clicking
HERE will display the BuzzFeed slide show that was
the basis of the video above, but this presentation
includes even more details of what is out there. And
because it is a site where you have to scroll down to
advance the presentation, you can spend as much time as
you like on each photo and set of facts.
• • • • •
If you enjoy flash mobs as much
as we do this that took place in a shopping mall in
Paris is a must-see. What makes it unique and special
are the ages of the performers. It starts with a couple
of kids sitting down at a piano and…well…see for
yourself by clicking
• • • • •
is our closer for the first Farsider of 2015. Get ready
to count along, then click
Leroy. I owe you one.)
• • • • •
and have a great 2015.
PIC OF THE WEEK
says he's amazed that the Christmas tree he
almost three weeks ago still smells like pine.
THE FARSIDER SUBSCRIPTION ROSTER as of 1/1/15
Additions and changes since the last published update
(alphabetical by last name):
To receive the email address of anyone on the list -- or
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send your request to
Abram, Fred & Connie
Alvarez, Pat (Campbell)
Babineau, Dave & Cheryl
Bray, Mary Ellen
Brown Jr., Bill
Burroughs, (Bronson) Utta
Carr Jr., John
Carrillo, Jaci Cordes
Clark, Bill (the one who stayed)
Embry (Howsmon), Eva
Foulkes [Duchon], Louise
Gonzalez, D. (formerly D. Avila)
Guido, Jr., Jim
Guido, Sr. Jim
Hare, Caren (Carlisle)
Harnish, Mary (Craven)
Horton, Debbie (McIntyre)
Howsmon (Sr.), Frank
Inami, Steve & Francine
Johnson, Tom & Fran
Klein, Lou Anna
Leonard (Lintern), Lynda
Long (Huntwork), Eunice
Muldrow, Mark "Mo"
Ng, Dr. Jonathan
O'Carroll, Diane (Azzarello)
Perry (Cervantez), Martha
Rappe (Ryman), Bonnie
Reyes (Buell), Cindy
Richter, Darrell & Annette
Schenini (Alvarez), Joanne
Taves, Phil & Paula
Terry, Glenn & Maggie
Vallecilla, Ernie & Peggy
Van Dyck, Lois
Williams [Durham], Lanette
Windisch Jr., Steve