The Cop Playbook. Public Safety Has Nothing To Do With It.

For paranoia, sheer cynicism and demonstration of unbridled self-interest there’s nothing that can beat this “playbook” created by the law firm of Lackie, Dammeier & McGill for use by their clients: cop unions.

See how many of these tactics strike you as familiar in Fullerton. Paranoia, cynicism and self-interest. Check, check, check.


Lackie, Dammeier & McGill
Former Cops Defending Current Ones

Negotiations After Impasse – Association Options
In gearing up for negotiations, hopefully your association has developed some political ties with members of your governing body. Now is the time those political endorsements, favors, and friendships come into play. When negotiations reach an impasse, the association will have options which may be utilized simultaneously, or one before the other.

Political Option
As most association leaders already know, associations should be selective in their battles. However, this does not mean that the association should roll over for everything either. Association respect (by the employer) is gained over years of actions or inactions. Associations who rarely, if ever, take things to the mat or challenge the employer gain little respect at the bargaining table or elsewhere. The flip side is also true. Those associations that battle over every minor issue may be seen as an association that simply cannot be pleased, so why bother. While it is a fine line, somewhere in the middle is where you want to be. The association should be like a quiet giant in the position of, “do as I ask and don’t piss me off.” Depending on the circumstances surrounding the negotiations impasse, there are various tools available to an association to put political pressure on the decision makers. A few things to keep in mind when utilizing these tools are the following:

Public Message
Always keep this in mind. The public could care less about your pay, medical coverage and pension plan. All they want to know is “what is in it for them.” Any public positions or statements by the association should always keep that focus. The message should always be public safety first. You do not want wage increases for yourselves, but simply to attract better qualified candidates and to keep more experienced officers from leaving.

The Future
Also keep in mind that once the fight is over, you and your members will still be working there. Avoid activities where one or just a few members are involved who can be singled out for retaliation. Always keep in mind your department policies and the law. You should be in very close contact with your association’s attorney during these times to ensure you are not going to get yourself or any of your members in trouble. For associations in the Legal Defense Fund, please keep in mind that concerted labor activity should always be discussed with the LDF Trustees prior to the activity to ensure coverage.

Let the Debate Begin
Again, the ideas listed below are not in any particular order. Just as in your use-of-force guidelines, you can start with simple verbal commands or jump to a higher level, based on the circumstances.
Keep in mind that most of these tools are not to deliver your message to the public but are designed to simply get the decision makers into giving in to your position.

  • Storm City Council – While an association is at impasse, no city council or governing board meeting should take place where members of your association and the public aren’t present publicly chastising them for their lack of concern for public safety.
  • Picketing – Plan a few well organized picketing events. Keep these events spread out to avoid burning out your membership.
  • Public Appearances – During impasse, the association should make known at every significant public event, such as parades, Christmas tree lightings, the Mayor’s Gala and any other event of interest to the decision makers, that the association is upset about the lack of concern for public safety.
  • Newspaper Ads – Again, keep the message focused on “public safety.”
  • Billboards – Nothing seems to get more attention than a billboard entering the city limits which reads that crime is up and the City could care less about your safety.
  • was a big hit.
  • Job Fair – Getting your members to apply at a large local agency, which causes an influx of personnel file checks by background investigators always sends a strong signal. Keep this for last, as some of your members may ultimately leave anyway.
  • Work Slowdown – This involves informing your members to comply closely with Department policy and obey all speed limits. It also involves having members do thorough investigations, such as canvassing the entire neighborhood when taking a 459 report and asking for a back-up unit on most calls. Of course, exercising officer discretion in not issuing citations and making arrests is also encouraged.
  • Blue Flu – This one is very rarely used and only in dire circumstances. As with all of these, please consult your association’s attorney before even discussing this issue with your members.
  • Public Ridicule – Blunders by the City Manager, Mayor, or City Council members or wasteful spending should be highlighted and pointed out to the public at every opportunity.
  • Referendum / Ballot Initiatives – Getting the public to vote for a wage increase is seldom going to fly, however, as a pressure tactic, seeking petition to file a referendum on eliminating the City Manager’s position for a full time elected mayor may cause the City Manager to rethink his or her position.
  • Mailers – Again, the message should be for “public safety” in getting the public to attend city council meetings and to call the City Council members (preferably at home) to chastize them for their inaction.
  • Campaigning – If any members of the governing body are up for election, the association should begin actively campaigning against them, again for their lack of concern over public safety. If you are in a non-election year, make political flyers which you can explain will be mailed out the following year during the election season.
  • Focus on an Individual – Avoid spreading your energy. Focus on a city manager, councilperson, mayor or police chief and keep the pressure up until that person assures you his loyalty and then move on to the next victim.
  • Press Conferences – Every high profile crime that takes place should result in the association’s uproar at the governing body for not having enough officers on the street, which could have avoided the incident.

Of course, other ideas that cops come up with are very imaginative. Just keep in mind, the idea is to show the decision makers that the public favors public safety and it will only harm their public support by not prioritizing you and almost equally as important, to let them know that next time they should agree with you much sooner.

85 Replies to “The Cop Playbook. Public Safety Has Nothing To Do With It.”

  1. Thanks for publishing this. Now we know what the cops really think of the people who pay their exorbitant salaries and benefits. Unfortunately sooner or later when the feasting is done the host dies.

    1. Soooooo, Tony. Did you buy Whitaker and Kiger (and maybe Levinson spots in the “COPS Voters Guide” again? Because that was funny! I wonder if anyone will tell people about it in the Pennysaver!

  2. Work slowdown and blue flu? That’s the opposite of public safety. That’s public endangerment.

    Unions are dirty.

  3. This has been in the news for about a week. Glad to see the leaders of our city are so up on current events.

  4. Don’t forget that FPOA does not use this firm. This firm is terrible. At least FPOA uses a much more respectable, ethical, and moral law firm.

    I posted this dirty firms press release on here yesterday.

        1. Yeah, I know that name; they do “labor/employee relations” on behalf of public safety employees; they also represent public safety employees in workers’ comp claims.

          I had some limited experience with a couple of their attorneys several years ago (on the other side) and found them to be fair – personal opinion – as to the workers’ comp issues.

          Don’t know about their rep as far as labor/employee relations

      1. Just as I said. LDF is a separate entity. Cops pay their own LDF and pick their own attorneys from the firms allowed. This case is odd because Schwartz was with SHSWL when Cici chose him and in the middle Schwartz switched to the Dammier firm for employment. So yes in this criminal trial this cop chose that attorney. FPOA is represented by SHSWL though.

          1. Nope. There is a rate per officer and each officer pays that amount per month. Then defense is fully paid by LDF when they need to use it.

    1. It was in the press release I posted. They said anything and everything to get dirt or ruin dirty politicians.

    1. Not true. LDF is paying. His attorney switched law firms mid stream so LDF is now paying this dirty law firm.

  5. Old news…so now you’re pilfering OC Register articles? What, did you guys run out of insults for Flory?

  6. Tony is an idiot! Trying to deflect! This doesn’t even apply to fullerton pd! Hey tony here is some reference material for you for your next article…..

    1. Doesn’t apply? The hell it doesn’t. Every item on that list has and will be played out by Coff & Co.

      The only trouble is those guys are so dumb and heavy handed every body will see through the BS.

      Cooffman and Kirk? What kind of fools would put those clowns in charge of anything more complicated than hiring a Tommy Burger truck. Lol!

  7. These union goons are like the modern day mafia. Look what they apparently did to Righeimer in Costa Mesa. The goons hate Righeimer for fighting against their cause that promotes more jobs, bigger paychecks and bigger benefits for cops. And it appears that Righeimer was targeted for arrest and public ridicule and an ouster from political office for his political beliefs. And now who is investigating what happened? COSTA MESA POLICE DEPARTMENT WHO WAS TIED TO THE HIP THE UNION LAW FIRM! THEY ARE INVESTIGATING THEIR BUDDIES!! 😀

    This is like calling 911 about police misconduct and who responds to your front door? Guido and Luigi who tell you they got a deal that you can’t refuse!!! 😀

    Man, as a society we are really going sideways fast! We feel fearful of leaving out child in the supervision of a catholic priest and when we need help we refuse to call the cops because there’s a better chance they’ll screw us rather than help us.

    The ones who are in charge and in authority(from the pols on down) simply can’t be trusted. How can society operate in a functional manner based on that premise?

      1. No, first it must be verified. From what the CM said last night he had NO documentation to substantiate his claim and it was all word of mouth that the grant are inseperable. Naturally the cop’s water boys are going to SAY the grants are inseperable. The question is CAN THEY PRODUCE THE EVIDENCE TO SUPPORT WHAT THEY SAY? Many times they cannot. So let’s be patient and let it play out. Don’t put the cart before the horse and jump to faulty conclusions.

        1. If you’re referring to Felz’ comments, he admitted he didn’t “remember” if it was a text or e-mail message and didn’t have anything in print at the time he made the comment last night. Will be interesting to see if anything is produced to verify/confirm the comments he made.

        2. These two are seperable. They are confused.

          Mini grant is only for checkpoints. Take it or leave it.

          Big grant has Everythjng. Either do the checkpoints in that specific grant or you get nothing.

          1. Porkchop,

            You’ve confused me.

            I understand that there are 2 grants. One is for the checkpoints ($50,000) and the other is for other LE activities re: dui enforcement.

            The $50,000 was rejected. Now, from my understanding, they are insinuating (w/o poof) that the $50,000 checkpoint grant cannot be separated from the larger grant.

            In your statement above #32 you said it’s “all or nothing” but now you are claiming the grants are seperable.

            What gives, Porkchop. You seem to be contradicting yourself.


            I agree with Peaches. These gamers need to put the proof on the table or STFU.

            1. JustUs,

              Sorry for the confusion.

              One is for checkpoints only. It’s issued through OTS and managed by UC Berkley. It pays for about one checkpoint a month.

              The big grant, which varies in award usually between $100,000 and $500,000, includes all the DUI related activity I listed in the other post. This grant includes checkpoints and if you say you won’t do checkpoints, you don’t get a dollar for DUI related activities. Most cities would love this money and most cities apply for the grants. The higher amounts go to cities with more serious DUI crash stats related to injury and death.

              They are totally seperate grants and I have never heard of them being related in any way at all. They are applied for differently, one is quick application and the other very extensive.

              Honestly, I think someone had a communication issue here and got things mixed up. I think the mix up was on the big grant where they said if you wont’ do checkpoints, then you can’t have the $100,000 grant. So if you won’t do checkpoints, you can’t have the $50,000 grant and you can’t have the $100,000 grant. If you will do checkpoints then you can have both grants and $150,000 toward DUI related enforcement and education.

  8. Did you watch some of those acting jobs at the podium last night? Real academy award stuff. I would have nominated several for an academy award and several others for their supporting roles. Real professionals. Top notch material. Just like out of Hollywood. Only if they had the looks. If so they’d make it to the big screen.

          1. he sure does obsess over this o’malley character, I think he has got a little crush on him.

            1. Freddie most definitely has a hard on for this O’Malley character. It’s most evident right after Freddie has his estrogen shot and his nether region starts to tingle….

        1. To JustUs and Fred Alcazar:

          The phrase “You went there?” in this particular instance is commonly used by people of my generation to express disbelief that someone could have such a lack of empathy that they would cast aspersions upon the motivations of family members of people killed by drunk drivers.

          Stay classy.

          1. Cold Chillin’ –

            Let’s get one thing straight right out of the gate, cowboy.

            Just because someone had a friend or a relative killed by a drunk driver it doesn’t give them the perogative to violate my civil rights.

            If I’m driving down the street stone-cold sober, obeying the laws and minding my own business some pig shouldn’t have the right to motion me to pull over to the side of the road for a shakedown. That’s fascism pure and simple. A dead relative doesn’t give anyone the right to do that to me. No more than some pig knocking on my front door to tell me he’s come to conduct a warrantless safety check to safeguard the children. I don’t buy that horsecrap.

            1. JustUs.

              Let’s get one thing straight right of the gate, cowboy.

              Driving in California is a privilege, not a right. In California no pig is going to have you pull over to the side of the road. You are doing to stay in your lane of traffic and you are going to say hello to the piggy. He will smile at you and you will smile back. He will say good evening, how are you this evening, can I see your driver’s license. When you show him your driver’s license and your eyes are glossy or bloodshot and you don’t stink like a bum, you will stay in your lane of traffic and proceed as you were a minute before.

              Welcome to California and enjoy your privilege to drive.

              Now smell that horsecrap and be on your way pardner.

              1. “Welcome to California and enjoy your privilege to drive”

                One could argue that it’s a privilege, not a right, to own a home too. If the owner does not pay his property tax is can be taken away from him. So based on the fascist rule that a pig and force me to pull my car over and submit to his questioning, what’s to stop a pig from knocking on my front door and requiring a warrantless home safety check to search for contraband that might be a ‘danger to the children’? Hell, if it could save just one child, it would be worth it, right? Same fascist slippery slope and playbook, porkchop. Now go put your jackboots on and go violate somebody’s civil rights.

    1. Just like all of the ones over the last year right? Thought so. All good when it’s your people. God forbid people express an opposing view in line with what the public wants.

  9. “Sad to say, but had the triggerman been, say, a Fountain Valley police officer, this incident may have not generated a post on this blog because, sadder to say, such incidents are fairly routine. But with the Kelly Thomas murder, every Fullerton police action gets put under the media microscope.”

  10. Cold Chillin’ Cop Balls 3 :
    I suggest you research the “victim”, Christopher Shull, on Vision.

    For Security reasons you shouldnt click on troll links.

    “He was driving on a suspended license, reports the Orange County Register, which also cites court records showing Shull was on probation and had numerous misdemeanor arrests for assault, battery, driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs, resisting a police officer, domestic violence and violating protective orders.” –OC Weekly

    1. That’s why you should always investigate these things yourself.

      Missing from the Weekly/Register list of arrests: assault with a deadly weapon (twice), brandishing a weapon, auto theft, possession of a stolen car…..

        1. Not funny GED Fred. This is serious crap. Someone lost their life and these cops will be affected for life. All because someone wanted a cop to take their life. Sad.

  11. That’s the long and complicated version of Amen-Ra Toth, and it’s missing Ra, or Kelly Thomas. You’ll figure this out eventually. In the meanwhile, you’re too stupid and fixated reactive to fully grasp what you are dealing with here. Scary, isn’t it?

  12. JustUs :
    “Welcome to California and enjoy your privilege to drive”
    One could argue that it’s a privilege, not a right, to own a home too. If the owner does not pay his property tax is can be taken away from him. So based on the fascist rule that a pig and force me to pull my car over and submit to his questioning, what’s to stop a pig from knocking on my front door and requiring a warrantless home safety check to search for contraband that might be a ‘danger to the children’? Hell, if it could save just one child, it would be worth it, right? Same fascist slippery slope and playbook, porkchop. Now go put your jackboots on and go violate somebody’s civil rights.

    It’s already being done. Install cameras in your home in case they invade you. At least there’s a chance it will be seen if they execute you to cover up their pillaging of your home. Also teach your children to escape and not look back.

  13. You don’t get it, because you’re looking for reason in a political infrastructure that’s gone atramental. The new paradigm is corporate, which the police do not follow the rule of law. They follow local policy which is written to circumvent the constitution, and their bosses are rewarded for this with debauchery perks, hence their party culture. You are trying to appeal to the ethics of sociopaths. Sociopaths DO NOT HAVE any ethics. How long do you figure it will take you to understand this? You people are stupid. You’re just stupid. You think you can moralize these monsters. You can’t. they are DEMORALIZING YOU, and you don’t even know it. You have to think strategically to deal with this, which a part of this involves using attorneys, but you won’t do that, because it costs you money. You want your money for yourself the same way these monsters want you to feed their children. Idiots.

  14. I guess the portion that reads “Always keep in mind your department policies and the law.” was forgotten when it came time to fight with Costa Mesa. Seems there is a rumor out there that filing false police reports might just be a misdemeanor. Oh well. Next time.

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