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 website 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 its membership.
Craig Shuey, our roving reporter who covers the Sacramento beat, sent in this item that appeared in the Sac Bee a week ago Wednesday…
Should be Able to Reduce Public Employees’ Pension Benefits, Jerry Brown Jerry
By Adam Ashton <email@example.com>
Sacramento Bee — Nov. 22, 2017
This article begins with a video titled “California’s public
crisis is bad and getting worse.” Click HERE if you want to view it.
Gov. Jerry Brown got most of what he wanted when he carried a proposal to shore up the state’s underfunded public employee pension plans by trimming benefits for new workers.
Five years later, he’s in court making an expansive case that government agencies should be able to adjust pension benefits for current workers, too.
A new brief his office filed in a union-backed challenge to Brown’s 2012 pension reform law argues that faith in government hinges in part on responsible management of retirement plans for public workers.
“At stake was the public’s trust in the government’s prudent use of limited taxpayer funds,” the brief reads, referring to the period when he advocated for pension changes during the recession.
Never miss a local story.
While the brief targets a specific provision of the pension overhaul he championed, its arguments suggest he favors broader pension changes that affect current employees.
“It was as good as anything the lawyers we use could have written,” said Dan Pellissier, president of an advocacy group that that wants to reduce California pension obligations for public employees and retirees.
The filing embraces a cluster of recent court decisions that hold public employees are entitled to reasonable pensions, but not necessarily ones that are calculated on the most favorable formulas for them.
And the filing paints unions as unreasonable in insisting that any reduction in pension benefits must be offset by additional compensation. That’s the so-called “California rule,” the legal precedent that has barred state and local governments from modifying pension benefits for existing workers they’ve offered over the past 60 years.
“Many legal experts have criticized the rigid inflexibility of the union’s position, pointing out that it is contrary to contract clause principles, inconsistent with general contract and economic theory, and effectively depresses the salaries and benefits of new generations of public employees,” Brown’s attorneys wrote in a footnote.
Brown’s office this month supplanted the attorney general in defending Brown’s pension reform law in a long-running lawsuit filed by the union that represents Cal Fire firefighters. The union wants to restore the ability of public employees to buy “air time,” a perquisite that lets workers purchase extra years of service that are credited to their pensions.
Before Brown’s pension reform law took effect, California public employees could buy up to five years of service credit through the air time offerings. Participating in the program cost workers tens of thousands of dollars up front, but gave them a higher pension when they reached retirement age.
Cal Fire Local 2881 President Mike Lopez said air time gave firefighters some assurance that they could count on a full pension if an illness or injury forced them to retire early.
“It’s an option for the sacrifice the firefighters are making for the citizens we protect,” he said.
Neither Brown’s office nor the Attorney’s General’s Office would say why the governor took over the case, but unions and lobbyists noticed the change.
“The governor has one year left and he like others sees the future and wants to try to make some meaningful reforms,” said Dane Hutchings, the chief lobbyist for the League of California Cities. Members of his organization have been asking lawmakers and pension leaders for more flexibility in negotiating to lower their pension costs.
Advocates who say California can’t afford the benefits it has promised to 1.8 million public workers and pensioners in the California Public Employees’ Retirement System in particular cheered the governor’s arguments.
Despite the pension changes Brown championed, the state’s two largest public pension systems are still severely underfunded. CalPERS, with $343 billion in assets, and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System, with $220 billion, each have a little more than two-thirds of the assets they’d need to pay the benefits they owe.
Both systems also are asking local governments and schools to pay more money to fund the pensions of their employees, a trend that some local government advocates say is “crowding out” their ability to fund services.
“There comes a point where you can’t become any leaner than you are,” Tulare City Manager Joe Carlini told the CalPERS Board of Administration last week.
The Cal Fire Local 2881 case is one several lawsuits that public employee unions filed shortly after Brown signed the Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act, which restricted benefits for public employees hired after Jan. 1, 2013, and required them to contribute more money toward their retirement plans. It did not change the base pension formulas that were available to employees who were hired before that date.
The law took aim at “spiking” by restricting the types of pay that public employees could use to calculate their pensions, and it prevented CalPERS from selling “air time” credits after Jan. 1, 2013. Both of those changes applied to workers who started their jobs before the law took effect, which the unions considered to be an infringement on the “California rule” because they cut incentives for current employees.
“You have to twist yourself up pretty good” to believe the air time and spiking changes will hold up in court despite the “California rule,” said Terry Brennand, pension director for SEIU California. “You’re taking away a benefit that is part of my program without offering me anything. I get removing it for future employees, but going backwards was a political move.”
The other lawsuits, one from Alameda County and from Marin County, challenge parts of the pension reform law that restrict “spiking,” or the practice of inflating public employees’ salaries late in their careers to swell the pensions they receive in retirement.
All three cases are headed to the California Supreme Court. They gained attention in lower courts when judges handed down opinions that seemed to challenge the “California rule.”
“While plaintiffs may believe they have been disadvantaged by these amendments, the law is quite clear that they are entitled only to a ‘reasonable’ pension, not one providing fixed or definite benefits immune from modification,” justices at the state’s 1st District Court of Appeal wrote in the Cal Fire case.
Brown’s filing at the state Supreme Court in the Cal Fire case cited those recent rulings in contending that governments have an interest in modifying pension plans. His brief called the airtime credits an “inherently unworkable and fiscally irresponsible scheme” and it warned that voters would not support tax increases if they don’t trust officials to manage the money well.
“That to me was the broadest argument he could make,” said Joe Nation, a former Democratic assemblyman who researches public employee pensions at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
“What’s promising to me is he ties pension benefits to the general public good, and the general public good I would define as the government’s core mission” to provide public services, Nation said.
Union representatives and Cal Fire Local 2881’s attorneys said they were not surprised that Brown’s office intervened to defend a law that’s closely associated with his legacy. The Cal Fire union attorneys are also representing Marin County retirees in that other marquee case.
“The signature issue in both cases is the future of the California rule,” Gary Messing, one of the lead union attorneys. The Cal Fire “case is directly in the heart of it because you have a promise” from an employer to an employee.
• • • • •
It’s not a surprise that the Mercury News’ Editorial Board (read Barbara Marshman) is solidly behind Gov. Moonbeam…
Comes to Taxpayers’ Defense on Pensions
Mercury News Editorial — Nov. 27, 2017
With the state Supreme Court considering the most significant public employee pension case in nearly three decades, it’s reassuring to see the governor come to the defense of taxpayers.
For Jerry Brown, this case, a union challenge to portions of his 2012 pension changes, could determine his legacy on the issue.
He will be remembered either as someone who put a Band-Aid on a gaping wound, $374 billion of retirement debt and growing, or as the leader who meaningfully staunched the bleeding of public money.
In a surprise move, Brown recently took over defense of his law. Until then, the state Attorney General’s Office had, as it usually does, represented the state.
While a Brown spokesman would not comment on the reason for the change, it seems intended to ensure pressure from organized labor doesn’t undermine his legal case.
Former Attorney General Kamala Harris had at first balked at defending the law. Now, her appointed successor, Xavier Bacerra, must run for election next year and doesn’t want to antagonize politically powerful unions.
Brown’s opening brief in the Supreme Court case provides a full-throated defense of his law and, more significantly, unequivocally calls for fundamental changes to a legal doctrine blocking meaningful pension changes in California.
For decades, pension attorneys across California have said that once a public employee starts working, his retirement benefit formula can never be altered, not even for benefits he hasn’t yet earned.
For example, a firefighter in California, having been offered at his career start a pension equal to 3 percent of top salary for every year on the job, could accrue benefits at that level his entire working life.
The unalterable benefit level was considered a constitutionally protected “vested right” under a legal doctrine known as the California Rule.
Unwilling to reduce benefit levels for current employees’ future years of work, Brown, in his 2012 legislation, put only a tiny dent in retirement costs.
Nevertheless, labor unions challenged two provisions in court, claiming they violate the California Rule.
One ended egregious “spiking” that enabled workers to inflate their final year’s salary on which their pensions were calculated. Workers enrolled in county-level retirement plans in Alameda, Contra Costa, Merced and Marin were most affected.
The other provision eliminated “airtime,” which allowed employees to increase their pensions by purchasing additional years of service credit from CalPERS at what turned out to be discount rates.
Separate panels of the state Court of Appeal upheld the Marin County anti-spiking provisions and elimination of airtime. In doing so, they rolled back the California Rule.
So long as pension modifications are “reasonable,” they do not violate workers’ constitutional rights, the court panels said. Public employees do not have “an immutable entitlement to the most optimal formula of calculating the pension.”
If the Supreme Court upholds that ruling, Californians might finally be able to restore sanity to public pension benefits, as the Little Hoover Commission advocated back in 2011. There’s a lot riding on this case — for Brown and for taxpayers.
Click HERE to review the new arbitration language. But be forewarned, it’s a real yawner.
THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF SAN JOSE AND THE SJPD
Chief Eddie Garcia has to be pleased with this editorial from Tuesday’s paper. (For the SJPD to receive this much official praise from the paper is somewhat unusual…)
Jose Police on a Good Track with Community
Mercury News Editorial — Nov. 28, 2017
Police Chief Eddie Garcia is raising the bar for policing in San Jose. He has improved communication with the city’s diverse neighborhoods, instituted training to calm potentially violent situations and improved policies to deal with the use of force.
The San Jose Police Officers Association has stepped up as well. Officers collaborate on policy changes and have applied independently for grants for training in how to deal with the mentally ill, a huge challenge for today’s police forces everywhere.
And now that hiring has finally kicked into high gear, with 101 recruits in training, the future is bright.
The department is rebuilding after misguided pension reforms early in this decade led to a brain drain. Best of all, the ranks are filling with young professionals schooled from the start in the dual mission Garcia sets out: Being proactive in law enforcement and public safety, while at the same time being fair and just.
“They are not mutually exclusive,” Garcia says.
In fact, quite the opposite. Officers seen as friends to the community will be better at enforcement and crime prevention — and will themselves be safer on the job.
Here are a few examples of changes.
• The department has new rules for the use of force — banning chokeholds and baton blows to the head, for example. It also examines incidents involving the use of force even if nobody has complained, and even if the district attorney has found no violation of the law. Internal discipline or additional training might be in order.
• Officers dealing with homeless residents downtown now give out drawstring bags with items such as socks, a flashlight and a card listing homeless resources — a gesture to establish human connections with people seen by many as just a problem.
• When a Sikh officer asked for a leave of absence so he could grow a beard for a religious ceremony this fall, Garcia said no. Instead he made an exception to department policy so the officer could grow his beard and still stay on the job. The chief was already working on a broader policy on religious exceptions to rules when this came up.
Groups such as PACT remain critical of police use of force, particularly shootings of mentally ill residents. While incidents have been found legally justified, PACT members say they are sometimes unnecessary.
The work of watchdogs is valuable, but so are community partnerships. On Sunday, at Garcia’s invitation, Pastor Jason Reynolds and members of his Emmanuel Baptist Church joined police officers at a service at the South San Jose Police Substation. The two led prayers for the police and the community.
“There are things I think SJPD has done that are really good, and places where there can be improvement,” Reynolds told reporter Robert Salonga.
No argument from us — or from Garcia. He espouses the Arthur Ashe philosophy: Success is a journey, not a destination.
In that journey, San Jose’s department is moving in the right direction.
Officers collaborate on policy changes and have applied independently for grants for training in how to deal with the mentally ill.
As some of you know, my son Clint is a weapons’ manufacturer. He also works with law enforcement in the development of weapons and training. Below is a video that was recently posted about a non-profit called Hero Hunt, Inc. that Clint sponsors. Great story!
Dave Walker <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The subject of this clip is a Nashville PD police officer who was shot multiple times in the line of duty while clearing a building. He accepted an invitation to go on a hunt by the Hero Hunt organization. Those of you who are into hunting may find the video of interest; those who are not may not. To view the video click HERE.
• • • • •
We've been subconsciously waiting for thousands of years. Finally that momentous time is nearly here. We're within just a few decades of having that great and eternal perpetual war. No joke! Just think of it: non-stop flare ups and eternal conflicts. We finally have the skills, the brain power and the technology to become the gods of our own destiny. We can't get along with each other, and we need an outlet for our animal natures. Let's face it. We love violence, everyone loves violence. It's worldwide. Look around. Why disguise it? Let's just decide to better manage our lower elements.
The politicians have proven themselves incapable of handling the speed and complexity of modern warfare. They're too slow and debate too much. New leaders will need to take over. They're ready. They've been well trained. International corporate arms dealers are trillion dollar negotiators and know how to build sophisticated armaments and handle ballooning budgets. We just give them our tax dollars and they can manage everything for us. They can collaborate with our military and even set the casualty ratios. It won't be that bad. We have more money, so the other guys’ body count will be way more. In the perpetual war things won't be so haphazard. We can better regulate and control circumstances. The new managers know how to do these things. Just think, artificial intelligence and robot wars will be the next great things.
Imagine a world where the heavy burden of peace keeping and peace negotiations will finally be lifted from our striving souls, but compassion (for our side) will still be patriotic. Two major human forces will finally get to live in complete harmony. The consumers can consume every type of pleasure and distraction that their hearts desire, and our brutish aggressive natures can be satisfied with endless dark side adventures. What more could anyone want? We can have the best of both worlds. We can build tanks, bombs and robots as well as TV sets, smart phones and lollipops. What a beautiful world it will be! Things will be managed by experts, forever great, and most of us will live happily ever after!
The perpetual war. Fast approaching or already here?
Dave (Scannell) <email@example.com>
• • • • •
Thanks for putting my request in the Farsider. Reese Gwillim remembered the case, went online and found an article about it in the New York Times. Thanks again to you and Reese.
Owen Purser <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Owen had requested info on a case where a subject had a friend chop off his foot with a hatchet in a $210K insurance swindle. This was Reese’s response to Owen…
Hey, look what I found. I used to be an investigator...once upon a time.
ABSOLUTE LAST OPPORTUNITY TO ATTEND THE KKC DINNER DANCE
this Saturday, December 2nd. For those who have waited and not
reserved their tickets, contact Margie Thompson at 408-421-3785.
LATEST BILLY & SPANNER NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE
The latest 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. Download the newsletter HERE
Annual Christmas Luncheon Info
Our annual Christmas luncheon is Thursday, Dec. 14 at 11:00 a.m. at the SJPOA Hall.
You NEED to RSVP in order to attend this luncheon. Reservations must be received no later than December 11th.
If you plan on attending, we need you to sign up on-line as soon as possible. You can do so by clicking HERE.
San Jose P.O.A. Hall
1151 N.4th St.
December 14, 2017
Doors open at 11 a.m.
Lunch will be served from 12:00
Stop serving at 1:30
Please no toys
Dress is Business Casual
Cost: A $5.00 donation for each attendant. Cash or check and checks to be made out to AORSJPO&FF. All money collected to be donated to the toy program in-lieu of bringing a toy like we have in years past. If something comes up and you are not able to make the luncheon, please let us know by sending e-mail to Jerry Ellis at <email@example.com>.
2018 PBA VALENTINE’S DAY DINNER DANCE CANCELLED
The PBA Board regrets to inform its members that the 2018 Valentine’s Day Dinner Dance normally held on the weekend closest to Valentine’s Day will not be held this coming February. Another organization was able to beat the PBA in the booking of the POA Hall.
ARE YOU ANY GOOD AT POKER?
CAN YOU I.D. MORE THAN FIVE OF THESE NEW COPS?
How many of these cops who were getting sworn in on Feb. 1st of 1960 can you identify? If you can put names to five or more you can consider yourself an old timer with an excellent memory.
From left to right we have Gene Moss, Ray O'Beirne, Tom Seck, Hal Spangenberg, Waymon Morris, Dale Brua, Court Peterson, Rex Stelzer and Stan Tice. Of the nine, the only ones still with us are Tice, O’Beirne, Seck, Spangenberg. Brua and Stelzer. (The status of Waymon Morris is unknown; he resigned early on.)
REMEMBER LAST SUMMER’S RUNNING MAN CHALLENGE?
—We recall the Ice Bucket Challenge but not this—
Did we engage in a lengthy nap during the summer of 2016. If so, that would explain why we were totally unaware of the “Running Man Challenge” that infected police departments and sheriff’s offices all over the nation as well as some countries that included Scotland, Finland, Australia and New Zealand, just to name a few. After a reader sent in a clip of a police department engaged in the Running Man Challenge and asked if the SJPD participated (to our knowledge we didn’t), we began a search for others. To our surprise we turned up dozens. Those listed below are just some of those available on YouTube. Clicking on any one of them will will show you how that specific agency handled the challenge, and the first one from the San Diego S/O will best explain it.
San Diego County Sheriff’s Dept. (6:17)
Cincinnati,Ohio, Police Dept. (6:13)
North Charleston, South Carolina, Police Dept. (4:10)
Mansfield, Texas, Police Dept. (3:11)
Miami-Dade, Florida, Police Dept. (7:48)
Avondale, Arizona, Police Dept. (3:21)
Coral Gables, Florida, Police Dept. (3:33)
Lawrence, Kansas, Police Dept. (2:49)
Pasco County Fire Rescue, Florida (6:23)
Norcross, Georgia, Police Dept. (3:24)
Detroit, Michigan, Police Dept. (3:53)
Key West, Florida, Police Dept. (1:16)
Fayetteville, North Carolina, Police Dept. (4:08)
Pembroke Pines, Florida, Police Dept. (5:37)
City of Miami, Florida, Fire Dept. (3:51)
Raleigh, North Carolina, Police Dept. (5:51)
Hollywood, Florida, Police Dept. (7:51)
Durham, North Carolina, Bull City Police Dept. (5:58)
Fort Myers, Florida, Police Dept. (3:24)
Scotland Police Dept. (0:54)
Metropolitan, Scotland, Police Service (1:12)
New York City, New York, Police Dept. (0:43)
New York City, New York, Fire Dept. (0:56)
New Zealand Police Dept. (0:36)
Finland Police Suomen polisi (0:38)
Australian Federal Police (0:36)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Police Dept. (5:59)
North Miami, Florida, Police Dept. (5:22)
Hallandale Beach, Florida, Police Dept. (7:14)
San Antonio, Texas, Police Dept. (8:59)
Plymouth, Minnesota, Police Dept. (5:17)
Contra Costa County, California, Sheriff’s Office (5:25)
Frederick, Maryland, Police Dept. (6:13)
Bloomington, Minnesota, Police Dept. (3:28)
San Juan County, New Mexico, Sheriff’s Office (5:08)
Miramar, Florida, Police Dept. (7:29)
Jackson, Tennessee, Police Dept. (6:31)
Hamilton County, Ohio, Sheriff’s Dept. (3:36)
Monroe County, Florida, Sheriff’s Office (4:07)
Burleson, Texas, Police Dept. (6:17)
Bloomfield, New Jersey, Police Dept. (4:57)
Mount Vernon, New York, Police Dept. (5:40)
Minnetonka, Minnesota, Police Dept. (4:37)
WHERE DO CITIES FIND THESE GENIUSES?
We are surprised that Bridgeport, CT was able to bag this guy to head their law enforcement agency before San Francisco, Oakland or Berkeley. (Can't use the word “Police” — it is verboten.)
PD Chief Bans Cops from Having 'POLICE' on Uniforms
By Sandy Malone — Blue Lives Matter — Nov. 20, 2017
Bridgeport police chief has forbidden the city’s police officers
from wearing uniforms with the word “POLICE” written on their clothing.
Bridgeport, CT – Police Chief Armando “A.J.” Perez sent out a memorandum to his department on Nov. 13 forbidding the Bridgeport cops from advertising their profession on their clothing, according to the Connecticut Post.
“Members of Service [officers] are reminded that any wearing of ‘POLICE’ on department uniforms other than road job outerwear is prohibited. Supervisors will be held accountable for failing to enforce and abide by this directive,” Chief Perez wrote in the memo.
Bridgeport Police Sergeant Chris Robinson fired back an email to the chief that quickly circulated around the entire police department, and was shared with the Post. He has since been suspended.
“This order compromises everyone’s safety!!!!” Sgt. Robinson said in his email. “It is an order that can get an officer hurt or killed!”
Sgt. Robinson offered four scenarios where officers could benefit from clothing with reflective letters, all occurring at night: Working at the scene of a motor vehicle accident; chasing a suspect; responding to a burglary; and trying to break up a street fight, according to the Post.
Police officers weren’t the only ones upset about the chief’s memorandum.
“It does make me worry about his leadership,” City Councilman-elect Marcus Brown told the Post. “The police are there to protect and serve. People need to be able to ID who police officers are when outside of the vehicle. If they want to remove ‘POLICE’ from the jackets, what’s next? From police cars? It doesn’t make sense to me.”
Former SWAT-team commander for the DC Metro Transit Police, Captain William Malone, called the chief’s instructions not to put “POLICE” boldly on uniforms “irresponsible.”
“The most tragic line of duty death is to have an officer shot by another cop who mistakes you for a suspect holding a gun,” Capt. Malone said. “It’s not on the back of their jackets to tell citizens. It’s there to identify them to other cops when there’s no time to introduce yourself.”
On Monday, Chief Perez told Hearst that putting “POLICE” on uniforms is not authorized in current policy, which is established by the chief, the city’s law department, and the police commission.
“Uniformity and discipline are necessary for the efficient operation of a police organization,” Chief Perez said in a statement. “We are an organization of rules and laws and the rules must be adhered to. A uniform professional appearance is the image this organization wishes to convey.”
The chief noted that officers are “readily identifiable” by their uniforms, badges, name tags, hats, and police patches, the Post reported.
Chief Perez said that he hadn’t suspended Sgt. Robinson for “raising concerns,” but rather for ignoring proper protocol to voice them.
The president of the police union, Sergeant Chuck Paris, said his organization will research whether the Bridgeport Police’s uniform policy needs to be changed.
In Bridgeport, cops are paid an annual uniform allowance but responsible for selecting and purchasing the clothing.
Sgt. Paris said some officers opted to have “POLICE” printed on some of their clothing, in reflective material.
“Not figuring it would be an issue. ... They feel safer with that on their jackets,” he said.
Sgt. Robinson said having “POLICE” on a jacket or other outerwear would ensure that the wearer is recognized by fellow officers and the public.
In his email, he also pointed out that having “POLICE” on clothing could make a difference in court cases.
“I myself have been drilled on the stand before in trials that that they repeatedly asked me, ‘Well, is it possible that maybe they didn’t know you were a police officer’?” Sgt. Robinson said in his email to the chief.
Sgt. Paris said the police union hopes to intervene on Sgt. Robinson’s behalf.
Do you think that this policy makes any sense? We'd like to hear from you. Please let us know in the comments.
Click HERE and scroll down to add a comment and/or review those already made.
ABSOLUTE MADNESS ... PURE UNADULTERATED MADNESS!
Suicidal Teen Successfully Sues Cops Who Saved His Life, Gets $1.7M
By Holly Matkin — Blue Lives Matter — Nov. 23, 2017
A civil rights attorney won $1.7 million for his teen client.
Santa Clara, CA – A jury awarded $1.7 million to a teen who held a knife to his throat and was subdued by the police, KTVU reported.
A jury found Santa Clara Police Officer Mike Horn liable for the July 8, 2012, incident involving Austin Calhoun, the Mercury News reported.
Calhoun’s attorney, John Burris, said Calhoun was hit in the head by two rounds of "rubber bullets," required brain surgery, and now has a skull deformity.
The City of Santa Clara stood behind Officer Horn, and said he handled “a very dangerous situation per accepted police practices,” the Mercury News reported.
According to KGO, Calhoun was 16 years old when he wandered into a fire station while intoxicated and called 911.
Officers responded to the fire hall where they “found a young man out in public, holding a knife to his throat,” Santa Clara Police Captain Phil Cooke said.
Capt. Cooke said a negotiator was called to the scene, but that Calhoun forced officers to act when he advanced towards them.
Officer Horn fired two rubber projectiles, hitting Calhoun twice in the head. Another officer released a K-9 unit to help subdue the teen.
The projectile impacts caused Calhoun’s brain to swell, and led to emergency surgery to remove a portion of his skull, KGO reported.
"We think they showed great restraint and utilizing the devices they had rather than resorting to deadly force,” Capt. Cooke said.
Burris argued that Calhoun is a victim of “unreasonable force,” the Mercury News reported.
"When a person is suicidal, they have an obligation to de-escalate and not engage and accommodate the person by killing them," Burris said. "Just because they're suicidal doesn't mean you should do it. You're supposed to save lives, not take lives."
But the officers didn't kill him, they saved his life - fact that seems lost on the jury.
According to KTVU, Burris said he actually asked the jury to award Calhoun $10 million for physical and emotional injuries, and $2 million for punitive damages, but indicated he and his client were satisfied with the $1.7 million the jury deemed appropriate.
“Sadly, it seems that money is the only way to force the police to stop unnecessarily killing and injuring citizens who are suffering from mental health issues,” Burris told the Mercury News. “The conduct of the officers was outrageous, and Mr. Calhoun was fortunate to survive.”
Burris is a well-known civil rights attorney who represented Rodney King, Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett, and Tupac Shakur.
Officials from the city of Santa Clara did not immediately respond to a request for a comment, KTVU reported.
The City of Santa Clara is responsible for paying $1.7 million to Calhoun.
Click HERE to read the readers’ comments about this article.
COME JOIN OUR HOPE FOR PAWS DONORS CLUB
Come join us. It’s cheap and easy. Make a one-time or recurring donation to Hope for Paws in any amount then send us your name. We don’t want to know how much you donate or whether it’s a one-time or recurring $5 donation or more. Any amount will help Eldad and his volunteers cover their expenses and the vet bills for the dogs and other animals they are constantly rescuing. We would like to add your name to the club roster along with ours so other readers can see how much you care for the rescued animals we have been featuring and will continue to cover every week.
This week’s rescues:
This little guy who had reportedly been hit by a car wasn’t all that happy to be rescued at first, but he soon realized it was the BEST thing that ever happened to him. (4:13)
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This story is about the rescue of a sick and homeless dog that had been living UNDER cars for 7 months. (5:44)
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Our third story of the week is about Adrienne, a scared German Shepherd that was STRANDED in a Los Angeles river bed. (6:02)
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And this final clip of the week will show you what Eldad and his volunteer(s) sometimes go through to SAVE a homeless pooch. (6:21)
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If you can see your way clear to make a small one-time or recurring donation of $5 of $10 to cover Hope for Paws’ expenses and vet bills, click on <http://www.hopeforpaws.org/>. Then tell us who you are so we can add you to the Hope for Paws Club.
Pay no attention to this feline. She represents the enemy...
WORDS TO RETIRE BY...
When a good man leaves the line and retires to a better life, some are jealous and some are pleased. Yet others may wonder if he or she knows what they are leaving behind. Most who have already retired know that after a lifetime of camaraderie that few people ever experience, the new retiree will continue to long for the fellowship of the past.
We in the law enforcement community know about the fellowship that endures long after the uniforms are hung up in the back of the closet. We also know that even if the uniforms are tossed out, they still will be part of the newly retired with every step and breath that remains in his or her future. We also know how the very bearing of the man or woman speaks to what was. And in their heart, still is.
There are, of course, burdens of the job: Retirees still look at people suspiciously and still see what others do not see, or choose to ignore. But retirees will always look at the law enforcement community with profound respect and admiration.
New retirees should never think for one moment that they are escaping from the life. They are only escaping from the "job." In reality, they are only being allowed to leave "active duty."
So what I wish for the newly retired is this: That while you ease into retirement, you will always remember that, "Blessed are the Peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God."
Never forget that, although you may be retired, you still are a member of the greatest fraternity the world has ever known.
STORIES OF THE WEEK
Best salesman in the National Guard
Received from David Byers
Those who have experience with Cajuns will recognize that the hero of this story was born to sell!
Boudreaux, the smoothest-talking Cajun in the Louisiana National Guard, got called up to active duty.
His first assignment was in a military induction center. Because he was a good talker, they assigned him the duty of advising new recruits about government benefits, especially the GI insurance to which they were entitled.
The officer in charge soon noticed that Boudreaux was getting a 99 percent sign-up rate for the more expensive supplemental form of GI insurance.
This was remarkable, because it cost these low-income recruits $30.00 per month for the higher coverage, compared to what the government was already providing at no charge. The officer decided he'd sit in the back of the room at the next briefing and observe Boudreaux's sales pitch.
Boudreaux stood up before the latest group of inductees and said, "If you has da normal GI insurans an' you goes to Afghanistan an' gets youself killed, da govment' pays you benefishery $20,000. If you takes out da suppmental insurans, which cost you only t'irty dollars a munt, den da governmen' gots ta pay you benefishery $400,000!
“Now,” Boudreaux concluded, “which bunch you tink da governmen’ gonna send ta Afghanistan first?”
• • • • •
Seeking job in Washington
The Farsider Archives
An American Indian walks into a cafe with a shotgun in one hand while pulling a male buffalo with the other. He says to the waiter, "Want coffee."
The waiter says, "Sure, Chief, coming right up." He gets him a tall mug of coffee.
The Indian drinks the coffee down in one gulp, turns and blasts the buffalo with the shotgun, causing parts of the animal to splatter everywhere, then walks out.
The next morning the Indian returns. Again he has his shotgun in one hand while pulling a male buffalo with the other. He says to the waiter, "Want coffee."
The waiter says, "Whoa, Chief. We're still cleaning up your mess from yesterday. What was that all about, anyway?"
The Indian says, "Training for position in United States Congress. Come in, drink coffee, shoot the bull, leave mess for others to clean up, disappear for rest of day."
• • • • •
Inside the Lamaze class...
The Farsider Archives
The room was full of pregnant women and their husbands. The Lamaze class was in full swing. The instructor was teaching the women how to breathe properly, and she was also telling the men how to give the necessary assurances to their partners at this stage of the pregnancy.
She said: "Ladies, remember that exercise is good for you, and walking is especially beneficial because it strengthens the pelvic muscles and will make delivery that much easier!"
Then the instructor looked at the men in the room. "And you gentlemen should remember that you and your wife are in this together, so it wouldn't hurt you to go walking with her."
The room suddenly got very quiet. A few moments later a man at the back of the room slowly raised his hand.
Yes?" asked the instructor.
"I was just wondering, is it all right if she carries a golf bag while we walk?"
• • • • •
I'm changing supermarkets
The Farsider Archives
My Safeway store has an automatic water mister to keep the produce fresh. Just before it goes on, you hear the sound of distant thunder and the smell of fresh rain.
When you approach the milk cases, you hear cows mooing and the light scent of fresh hay.
When you approach the egg case, you hear hens cluck and cackle and the air is filled with the sound of bacon and eggs frying.
The veggie department features the smell of fresh buttered corn.
I don't buy toilet paper at my Safeway store any more.
THE BEST OF THE LATE NITE JOKES
—Funnies for the anti-Trump crowd from the late night show hosts—
Nov. 22 — 28
Missing shows from last week were repeats due to Thanksgiving
Nov. 28: A little drama out of Washington today. Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi canceled their meeting with President Trump, after he attacked them on Twitter. Then Trump was like, “Does this mean I can stay in my pajamas?"
After he referred to her as Pocahontas yesterday, Elizabeth Warren said it’s unfortunate Trump can’t make it through a ceremony without using a racial slur. Then his aides said “Seriously? He can’t make it through an episode of ‘Dora’ without using a racial slur.”
The White House just unveiled its holiday display, and it has a nativity scene, marking the first time all year there’s been Wise Men at the White House.
Another big story is that Prince Harry is engaged to Meghan Markle. And it was announced that they’ll marry at Windsor Castle this May. Right now, every bride is asking, “Wow – how’d they get a venue so quick?!”
Some big TV news. MTV is bringing back "Jersey Shore" next year with the original cast. Just what this country needs – MORE loud, orange people on TV.
Nov. 28: This week, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Russia isn’t acting like a “responsible nation.” President Trump agreed, saying, “They haven’t paid me in months.”
People are mad at President Trump for meeting with Native American leaders in front of a portrait of anti-Native American president Andrew Jackson. Even worse, today President Trump met with Hispanic leaders in front of a portrait of President Trump.
Genealogy experts say that Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle are actually distant cousins. After hearing they were related, Queen Elizabeth finally gave the couple her blessing.
Bernie Sanders has been nominated for a Grammy Award for best audio book. Of course, Bernie supporters are already complaining that the Grammys are rigged so that Hillary will win.
Arby’s has acquired Buffalo Wild Wings for $2.4 billion. They didn’t mean to, but like a lot of us, Arby’s got drunk and bought too many wings.
MTV announced it's bringing back the original cast of “Jersey Shore.” Can you believe it? Every single cast member was available!
In Indiana, a high school teacher was caught in her classroom snorting cocaine. People became suspicious when parent-teacher conferences lasted only 10 seconds.
Nov. 28: President Trump commented on North Korea's missile launch today, saying, quote, "We'll take care of it." That's it? I have to say, I don't find it comforting that the president talked about enemy missiles the same way a dermatologist talks about a weird mole.
President Trump tweeted this morning that NFL stadiums are having a very hard time filling up due to recent national anthem protests. "Yes, that's why," said the Cleveland Browns.
The top-selling items of Cyber Monday this year included the Nintendo Switch, Apple AirPods and the popular children's toy Hatchimals, while this year's least popular toy is Tickle Me Harvey.
Vice President Mike Pence announced today that he will travel to Israel next month to address its legislative body. And this is scary, while he's out of the country, Trump will be in charge.
A teacher in Indiana was arrested this week for allegedly snorting cocaine in her classroom. But on the plus side, she covered the whole industrial age in one period.
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE
Click HERE for the most current update.
If you are a fan of the 3 Tenors as well as the late Frank “Blue Eyes” Sinatra, you are liable to enjoy this clip provided by Don Hale. And you might even recognize the song titled “MY WAY.” (3:20)
• • • • •
Be afraid, be VERY afraid, robots can now do backflips. Sort of. (Watch to the end.) (0:48)
• • • • •
Speaking of robots, it looks like “Sophia” has awakened. Tom Macris says he can’t wait until she comes to market so he can order one that is programmed so that he can win every second argument. I have no such dream. I can’t even win an argument WITH Siri or Alexa! (3:53)
• • • • •
French Sniper Training
Don't laugh. If you stop and think about it, this an effective way for the French Army sniper to hit his target. First, the sniper's partner moons the enemy, making him furious. Then, when the enemy soldier stands up to give them the finger, he presents such a large target that even a French sniper can't miss!
• • • • •
Unbelievable, but it’s real.Watch as two wing suit flyers jump off a mountain and land inside a plane in mid-air. SPECTACULAR stunt. (2:22)
• • • • •
New Zealand has a unique and entertaining way of using the media to recruit cops. The question is, would it work HERE? We think it would. Check out this video. (2:58)
• • • • •
Everything is a matter of perspective, and we can prove it with this video clip where one end of a football field represents the birth of the Earth some 4.5 billion years ago and the other end zone represents the PRESENT. (4:56)
• • • • •
Stanley Morgan from KRON TV’s “People Behaving Badly” series is back riding along with the CHP as it participates in a multi-agency crackdown on HOV lane violators. (2:48)
And let’s not forget the cheaters who live in California but avoid the state’s registration fees by displaying out-of-state plates on THEIR cars. (2:25)
We’re sure this isn’t new to the Bay Area, but it’s the first time we’ve seen video of an officer deal WITH a “sovereign citizen.” (2:46)
And there are always nuts like this guy who is known as the “Marin Carpool Guy.” Talk about FRUITCAKES! (2:44)
• • • • •
Roger Coen says he may be getting old...
...but he refuses to slow down.
• • • • •
Imagine what an interview with Amazon.com creator and billionaire Jeff Bezos would be like if 60 Minutes had devoted a segment to him 18 years ago when Amazon only sold books. Turns out there is no need to imagine; HERE it is. (12:39)
• • • • •
According to Comrade Kosovilka, “I don’t know what the hell he is singing, but I sure do like Ukrainian FARM girls.” (What’s not to like, Bob?) (3:23)
~ ~ ~
Speaking of the Ukraine, with women who look like this in the Ukranian army, a draft to fill the ranks should not be necessary. Then again, we know more about life on Mars than we do about the armed forces of the FORMER Soviet bloc country. (3:56)
• • • • •
In closing, do you remember 12 years ago when patriotism was the hallmark of the NFL. Super Bowl XXXIX on Feb. 6, 2005 didn’t start with any celebrities or pop stars butchering the National Anthem or taking a knee. It began with the choirs from the military academies, their cadets, the U.S. Army’s Herald Trumpet Corps, two presidents and a packed stadium with thousands of patriots singing the National Anthem the way it was SUPPOSED to be sung. (2:38)
And for you hard core football fans, HERE are the highlights of the game courtesy of NFL Films. (3:14)
• • • • •
Pic of the Week
THE FARSIDER SUBSCRIPTION ROSTER as of 11/30/17
Additions and changes since the last published update (alphabetical by last name):
Maryanne Babiarz — Added
To receive the email address of anyone on the list -- or to receive the roster with all of the email addresses -- send your request to <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Abram, Fred & Connie
Allen, Chaplain Bryan
Alvarez, Pat (Campbell)
Babineau, Dave & Cheryl
Bray, Mary Ellen
Bridgen, Betty Ruth
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, (Jr.) Frank
Howsmon (Sr.), Frank
Hunter, Dick (via daughter Kim Mindling)
Inami, Steve & Francine
Johnson, Tom & Fran
Klein, Lou Anna
Leonard (Lintern), Lynda
Muldrow, Mark "Mo"
O'Carroll, Diane (Azzarello)
Perry (Cervantez), Martha
Rappe (Ryman), Bonnie
Reyes (Buell), Cindy
Schenini (Alvarez), Joanne
Taves, Phil & Paula
Terry, Glenn & Maggie
Vallecilla, Ernie & Peggy
Van Dyck, Lois
Williams [Durham], Lanette
Windisch Jr., Steve