Friday’s edition of the Orange County Register has a puff piece on how much progress Fullerton’s Police Department made in dealing with the homeless population. I can’t comment on the quality of the article, however, because I was unable to make it past this quote from Bob Dunn in the very first paragraph:
“Eight years have passed since the fatal beating of a homeless, schizophrenic Kelly Thomas by Fullerton police, but the tragedy remains a “deep wound” in the department’s psyche, says the city’s new police chief.”
Since our Police Chief is apparently unfamiliar with the meaning of the word “perspective”, allow me to provide some.
Kelly Thomas was a troubled individual, but he was a human being, and on July 5, 2011 he was essentially tortured to death in full view of hundreds of witnesses, all while apologizing and begging for his father. THAT is tragedy of Kelly Thomas, not the psychic boo boos the Police Department may have suffered.
A lot has happened in Fullerton over the last several years and while my involvement has waned ever since the City threatened me civilly and criminally because I happen to be associated with this blog, and this blog published embarrassing things City Hall would rather hide from the people, I have remained committed to finding the truth and speaking up against the vapid and self-serving corruption of our council majority & the city hall they oversee.
In my capacity as a chronic malcontent these last few years I have made numerous records requests looking for information and many of those requests have been ignored, delayed or denied owing to dubious legal claims or just outright misrepresentations of the law. As such I have opted to sue the city of Fullerton for violations of the California Public Records Act.
The now filed Petition for Writ of Mandate alleges that the City of Fullerton has violated the CPRA in regards to my records requests related to no less than 5 separate issues.
Back when I first started filing requests, specifically for the body worn camera and dash cam videos of the Joe Felz DUI incident, the city was able to hide behind a lack of enforceable disclosure laws as SB1421 was not yet the law of the land. Cities did/do this because they know it takes a lot of time, effort and commitment to make them comply with disclosure laws.
Here in Fullerton the arrogance got so bad that they didn’t even try to hide their disdain for the public and transparency. At one point after claiming the Felz video was exempt from disclosure owing to the non-existent sham investigation, City Attorney Gregory Palmer asserted to me; “If you are dissatisfied with the response you have remedies”.
Skip ahead a few years and it turns out I DO have remedies and I have opted to act upon them. Hence this lawsuit.
For those interested, the lawsuit reads as follows (after the jump, emphasis in original, exhibits in the Writ link above):
Most people, after having been nabbed committing trespass and theft would at least lay low for a respectable period of time.
But Paulette Marshall Chaffee, the former carpetbagging sign thief who quit the Fullerton City Council race less than a year ago is not respectable. She has decided to run for the Orange County Board of Education, a fairly obscure and almost totally opaque local agency.
One of our attentive Friends actually received a push poll promoting this miscreant. Just in case you don’t know a push poll is one of those phony calls that ask questions like: “if you knew Paulette Marshall invented a cure for cancer would you be more or less likely to vote for her?”
Well, I have a question of my own: what in the world are this woman’s qualifications? She can’t even steal campaign signs without getting busted.
Paulette and her doddering husband Doug “Bud” Chaffee have a long history of arrogance and indifference to the people of Fullerton, and so this move shouldn’t be too surprising.
And neither should it be surprising that we, the good folks at FFFF, will be conducting our own outreach: if you knew Paulette Marshall Chaffee plead guilty to theft would you be more or less likely to vote for her?
I watched this little gem of a clip from Bill Maher’s cable show last night. Bill rails against the added cost laden on to stuff simply because people can get away with it it.
In particular Maher notes the exorbitant cost of government projects, namely housing for the homeless and infrastructure where the “soft costs” including the inevitable army of “consultants” and lobbyists drives up the cost to absurdly comical levels. For the cost of building an “affordable” housing unit you could easily buy some homeless dude a condominium.
For those of us paying attention in Fullerton we have seen this in spades:
Five million bucks for a couple of traction elevators at the depot. Two million bucks for some crappy, rickety wood stairs at Hillcrest Park. The better part of a million bucks for a decorative bridge over the muddy ditch known as Brea Creek. Etc, etc., etc. The fact that these vanity efforts were totally unnecessary just adds insult to the injurious price tag.
The fact is that government building projects are grossly over-managed. There are architects and engineers galore; there are construction managers; there are general contractor’s project managers and superintendents coming out of the woodwork. And then there are the government’s “project managers” who manage virtually nothing but have blanketed themselves with warm layers of external “expertise” to insulate themselves against the inevitable sideways momentum of their next disaster.
Meanwhile the politicians who are elected to watch out for our interests are too lazy, ignorant, indifferent, or self-interested to give a damn.
The Voice of OC has a detailed story about how our city council approved giving half a million bucks to something called the Illumination Foundation to acquire and operate a homeless shelter somewhere in Fullerton.
As usual Jennifer Fitzgerald and Jan Flory pretended to care about the fact that the public has not been informed of the location of this place even though they know very well where it is. In the end they went along with their brethren Jesus Silva and Ahmad Zahra and voted 4-0 to commit $500,000 to this philanthropic endeavor (their philanthropy, our money). Bruce Whitaker was missing in action.
Of course Fitzgerald is running for re-election next year in District 1, so we can be certain the proposed property won’t be anywhere near her house, or that of Flory.
T-REX SO HAPPY. FOOLERTON APPROVE NEW EXPERIMENT FOR PERSONS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS. YOU SLEEP IN CAR AND THE CITY GIVE YOU PRESENTS. T-REX LOVE GIVING PRESENTS TO PERSONS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS.
T-REX HAVE IDEAS FOR WHERE TO PUT PARKING AND GIFT GIVING.
MAYBE RAYTHEON PARKING LOT. YUUUUUGE, NEXT TO JOBS AND TRAILS, NEXT TO NICE HOMES, GREAT PLACE TO PARK AND GIFT. BASTANCHURY PARK RIGHT NEXT DOOR, TOO.
RALPH B CLARK PARK HAVE YUUUUGE PARKING LOTS. LOTS OF DUCKS TO EAT. QUIET, PEACEFUL, BEAUTIFUL PLACE TO PARK AND GIFT.
MAYBE FOOLERTON USE CHURCHES ON EUUUUUUCLID. PERSONS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS GET A LITTLE JESUS BEFORE HITTING THE FULLERTON LOOP.
MAYBE MUCKENTHALER. IS CUTE PARKING, GET SOME CULTURE WITH PARK AND GIFT, NEXT TO ROADS AND BUS LINES. PERFECT PLACE FOR PERSONS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS.
T-REX THINK THAT WHERE EVER FOOLERTON PUT PEOPLE TO PARK AND SLEEP, THEY SHOULD BE CLOSE TO JENNIFER FITZGERALD. SHE SEEM SO EAGER TO AGREE TO IDEA, MAYBE THIS TIME SHE FINALLY PAY FOR ONE OF HER DECISIONS. T-REX THINK IT GREAT SHE VOLUNTEER HER NEIGHBORS FOR EXPERIMENT FOR PERSONS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS.
T-REX SO HAPPY. SO MANY NEW FRIENDS. THANK YOU JENNIFER FITZGERALD. THANK YOU FOR YOUR EXPERIMENT WITH PERSONS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS. WE HOPE YOUR NEIGHBORS HAPPY LIKE T-REX, TOO.
The cops always ask us, when we dare to criticize their unlawful, corrupt,or incompetent behavior: who are you going to call when you need help?Sometimes the question evolves into a statement: I hope we’re gonna be there when you need us. Then it always comes across as a thinly veiled bit of extortion on the part of those sworn to uphold “public safety,” and are taking public money (lots of it) to do so. I’m reminded of the mob shakedown racketeer: jeez, it will be a real shame if something is happening to youse guy’s nice bisness.
But enough small talk. FFFF received correspondence today from a Fullerton resident who believes he recently made a big mistake calling the FPD instead of just relying on the kindness of strangers.
Here is the story in his very own words – as addressed to the Police Chief, the City Council and the District Attorney.
Date: Sunday, September 29, 2019
To: Fullerton Police Chief, City Council Members, Orange County District Attorneys Office
From: Toby R Oliver, Fullerton resident
A call by me to the Fullerton Police Department last night for help in finding a mother and two-year old son has exploded into at hellish nightmare after FPD Sergeants decided to arrest said mother for doing nothing more than getting lost.
My wife and mother of our three sons, Pranee Sribunruang, now sits in the Santa Ana Jail on $100,000 bail, charged with felony child endangerment because two Fullerton Police Sergeants decided it was their duty to put her there after she went for a walk, got lost and took several hours to make it back home.
FPD Sergeants Brandon Clyde and Emmanuel Pulido pitched a mission of help and concern when I met them out front of our home last night, pulling out all the stops to help find Pranee and our two-year-old son Leo. Then just as the Sheriff’s Department blood hound was about to be given her scent, Pranee stepped out of a vehicle that had pulled up, driven by a good semaritan who found her and Leo at a gas station and brought them home.
This is when it all changed.
Immediately, Pranee was someone who had done something wrong. Forcing her to sit on the curb, out came a thosand questions from the officers. Where did you go? What were you doing? Who were you with? “What do you mean you wanted to walk to Norwalk, you can’t walk to Norwalk,” Sergeant Pulido spewed. I tried to step in, and the officers pulled me away, saying this and that about needing to talk to her separately. One of the junior officers brought me aside and tried to calm me down, “We just want to help her, find out what’s going on,” he said. “Go inside and I’ll call you out in a minute.”
I waited a few minutes, went back outside and Pranee was gone. I asked where she was. “She is being arrested,” they said. “For what,” I replied, “which car is she in?” They wouldn’t tell me, and they wouldn’t tell me what she was being charged with. “You’ll find out Tuesday,” one of them said. Then I saw her head up against the back side window of one of the patrol cars. I went toward her, grabbed at the window and said “babe.” I didn’t know what to say. It had all gone horribly wrong, so quick. And I was responsible because I had called the FPD for their help.
Before I could do anything else, one of the officers jumped in the car and tore off down the street, leaving me there looking after her. I still didn’t really understand what was happening. This was supposed to be about finding Pranee and Leo. Now they were taking her away before I could even hug her.
Pranee is the kindest person I know. Her life is about showing kindess to others. Everyone she meets falls in love with her and her kind spirit. She had never been arrested before. She never even had a speeding ticket. No misdemeanors, no arguments with anyone (except me, her husband), and certainly never any child neglect or endangerment. The only way you knew she was mad at you was when she didn’t speak to you. Now she sits in the Santa Ana County Jail thanks to Sergeants Pulido and Clyde, and our family is torn apart.
The officers asked me earlier in the night, “has she ever threatened to harm herself or her son.” No I said emphatically. Her and I have had our issues, as most couples do. And she has experienced some depression recently, and we are working on this and trying to seek some mental health treatment. All this I told the officers, but sergeants Clyde and Pulido took this to mean something very different.
There was no harm to my son Leo. There was no endangerment, unless walking on the sidewalk at night is felony endangerment in today’s Southern California. Clyde and Pulido just didn’t like her explanation that she wanted to walk to Norwalk to see a friend and trade jewelry. I had explained to them that I had her only debit card because I had misplaced mine the day before, or, she told the officers, she would have taken Uber. Her phone had no service, so she couldn’t call us. It just didn’t add up for Clyde and Pulido so they decided “she met the criteria” and ripped apart our family, just at the moment we were reunited.
Now, I realize the worse thing I did that night was to call FPD, because in the end she made it home on her own – even though we were all very worried – and we would all be home together tonight enjoying each other. Instead FPD has torn our family apart, and we are lost. Never will I seek the aide of FPD again.
And one last thing, I don’t blame Clyde and Pulido as much as I blame the FPD. Where would they get this attitude, this aggressive nature? Where would they get the idea that somebody needed to go to jail in this situation. This is training that comes from the top, and that is your real problem Police Chief and City Councilmembers. Something very rotten is at the heart of your police department, and you need to do something about it.
Toby R Oliver
Now of course this is only Mr. Oliver’s story, but as stories go, it seems to have a degree of verisimilitude. The City will have its own version of the tale, no doubt, even if we are never allowed to see it.
Please note Mr. Oliver’s two conclusions: namely, that it would have been far better for him to have never called the Fullerton Police Department at all; and that there must be an ingrained culture of aggression and inhumanity in the department. As to the first conclusion, I leave that for others to determine. As to the second issue, those of us watching the FPD and the way it operates, have long ago detected a wide vein of callousness that accompanied the criminal and abusive behavior by its employees.
So what will come of all this except embarrassment for his family and big legal bills for Mr. Oliver? He won’t get any satisfaction from his communicants, that’s for sure, or even an apology. No, for the FPD admits of no error as its careening incompetence smashes across the lives of the people who have had the misfortune to be in their way.
California’s Brown Act specifically enumerates when public agencies can meet in secret (Closed Session, they call it) away from the prying eyes of the nuisancy public that pays for the whole show. One of these exempt categories is “litigation,” in which secrecy is deemed to be okie-dokie. The problem is that government agencies, when given an inch will invariably take a mile.
But when you fail to specifically constrain the arm of government, they will invariably flex those muscles. And so it is that “litigation” has come to includeanticipated litigation which, of course, could cover just about anything, anywhere, at any time. And that label seems to give the City of Fullerton reason to believe it can omit the names of anticipated litigants. The anticipated litigants must, necessarily remain in the dark about what the government is about to do to them, while the government, for its part, gets a jump on its adversary. Of course this isn’t right, but what do rights have to do with the City of Fullerton government?
Let’s first take a look at the City’s Closed Session agenda for September 17:
Notice the final two items have been draped in the magical shroud of “anticipated litigation.” We may wonder what the Big Mystery is. Rumors are circulating that at least one of the the items in question is the City’s desire to sue humble little us, Friends for Fullerton’s Future, and that the council has voted to do so.Could that really be true? FFFF, of course, would be the last to know. But the City Attorney made no mention of such doings while “reporting out,” from the Closed Session. If they’re true, what are we to make of the rumors?
The City has already sent a couple of laughable nastigrams in our direction, both of which were duly ignored, so litigation is plausible, but only if the City initiates it. This means that it is the City instigating, not reacting to likely litigation, and begs the question of why this issue would not be a matter for public discourse. And it also suggests that it is the city manager and his bumbling lawyers who will have advocated this harassment to cover up their own corruption they didn’t want exposed.
Well, I’m sure that covering up its clownish behavior is the last thing the esteemed council, upright city manager and brilliant city lawyers would ever do, so it seems pretty certain everything will be made clear. One way or another.
Uh oh. Another sexcapade courtesy of the Fullerton Joint Unified High School District.
A few weeks ago we learned of the fun hijinks of FPD Pervy Peeping Policeman Jose Paez deployed on FJUHSD campuses as a “resource officer” which, if you think about it, if a pretty funny title for this creep.
Yesterday, news outlets reported on the playful doings of Ms. Kristin Lynn Boyle, a school psychologist at La Habra High. She is accused of rape in a classroom.
What is it with this sort of thing? Makes you wonder why the grossly overpaid educrats can’t run their operation just a little better. Did anybody bother giving the psychologist a psych test of her own? And how many of these minor transgressions will be successfully whitewashed and written off as bad luck for the organization?
First we get to hear the obligatory boohoo tale from our imbecile mayor, Jesus Silva about how a cop with a growing family just can’t afford to live with the paltry crumbs doled out by the taxpayers of Fullerton.
Then we get to hear from our $230,000 a year City Manager, Ken Domer, as he focuses his keen, analytical mind on the issue:
“We’re about 18th in pay, but we’re also the sixth largest city in Orange County. So our pay is clearly not where it should be,” Domer said.
Notice how this dull blade conflates city population with deserved cop pay? This is just insulting. Is he that stupid or just have that low opinion of our intelligence? And notice the language: “clearly not where it should be” as if perhaps his moronic formula is actually validated somewhere by a scale he just made up. No, Domer, what’s not where it should be is the monster salary we pay you not to be stupid – or at least not to say stupid things that end up in the media.
If anybody cares, the vote was 4-1 with Bruce Whitaker voting no. The rest, of course, went along for the ride, even though the City’s finances are so precarious Silva is promising a new tax on the ballot next year. And no doubt the cop union that is more interested in keeping dues paying members than in the well-being of our city will be backing it big time.
And as our decrepit roads and infrastructure deteriorate ever farther, they will be used by the cops and the bureaucrats to leverage more revenue from us. Revenue that will go right back into employee compensation for the people who brought us the bad roads in the first place, and who have cultivated and protected the FPD Culture of Corruption.