The Old Boy Network of the Fullerton establishment held a fundraiser for their old boys at the Villa Del Sol the other night. We will be sharing our own video later if our boys in the White Van ever recover from their serial ingestion of raw opium poppies that admin now grows in his backyard.
In the meantime, here’s a story on the event from Marisa Gerber of the OC Weekly. She mordantly describes the anti-recall attendees:
a rather homogeneous crew of sexagenarians and older — gathered at a pricey fundraiser tonight to support three beleaguered city leaders.
As usual the best quote of the night come from high school graduate and architect of the Culture of Corruption in the Fullerton Police Department, Pat McKinley:
He can handle it, he said, adding that what frustrated him most was hearing people “who probably never graduated high school” bad-mouth the mayor, who used to be a doctor.
Oh, oh. The literary She Bear who gets $215,000 a year courtesy of the taxpayer for doing nothing is taking shots at the academic accomplishments of the recallers. Bad idea Chief. Some folks might start asking about the scholastic level of your police force!
Here’s a copy of a letter to The Fullerton Observer by our State Assemblyman, Chris Norby, who puts the lie to the notion that Tony Bushala got some oct of subsidy in his lease deal with the Fullerton Redevelopment Agency. It’s funny how those who have routinely handed out millions in corporate welfare to their pals and cronies have chosen to attack Tony for actually paying to renovate the City-owned building!
Well, such are politics. The anti-recall crew are incapable of defending the Three Dessicated Dinosaurs so they have to attack the messenger of the Recall. Anyway, here’s Norby’s letter:
Santa Fe Depot Redevelopment Deal the Best We Could Get
I hesitate to get in the middle of your lively give-and-take with Tony Bushala (Mid-Sept Observer page 9 “Redevelopment Foe Also a Recipient,” and the Early October page 2 Rebuttal ).
However, since I was one of five Fullerton City Councilmembers (including Don Bankhead, Molly McClanahan, Buck Catlin, and Richard Ackerman) voting to approve the old Santa Fe Depot lease, allow me to defend our action.
That lease was the only way to save the historic structure from demolition and make an outdated building commercially viable.
In 1987, the Santa Fe Railroad sold the depot to a private developer who then sought a demolition permit. To avert its razing, the Fullerton Redevelopment Agency acquired the depot and sought bids for those who could preserve, restore and operate it. Agency staff recommended that the Bushala Brothers, Inc. (BBI) be awarded the project.
BBI was the only firm not requesting public subsidies. It offered a $41,000 up front payment to the agency plus $340,000 to restore the building to its original condition. As BBI had just completed an award-winning restoration of the old Ice House (just across the tracks from the depot) it was well qualified. When the depot restoration actually cost $540,000, the overruns were covered by BBI.
BBI also applied for and received the depot’s recognition on the National Registration of Historic Buildings and Places.
The monthly lease payment to the agency is $1,326, which is adjusted annually for inflation. While the Observer contends this is below market rate, it was the best offer we had at the time to restore this historic building. In addition, BBI pays $12,000 annually in building maintenance and for all property taxes and insurance.
The agency retained all rental income from Amtrak for the waiting room and ticketing areas. The rest of the depot was largely baggage storage rooms and an abandoned loading dock – areas difficult to lease out.
I have been critical of redevelopment agencies’ abuse of eminent domain, handouts to developers and diversion of property taxes from public schools. However, I have voted for agency-funded public projects (roads, parks, libraries) and for the preservation of historic buildings, such as the Santa Fe Depot.
One could argue that an old depot was not worth the public investment. However, given the council’s commitment to save the structure, I believe this was the best deal we had.
Chris Norby Fullerton Current California Assemblymember and former Fullerton City Council & Redevelopment Agency Member, 1984-2002
The systemic pattern of abuse that defines the Fullerton Police Department is well-established. But the allegations detailed in this newly emerging case might give even hardened FFFF readers pause. There seems to be no end to accounts of thuggish, sadistic Fullerton cops getting their sick jollies by brutalizing innocent citizens.
Fullerton College student and Fullerton resident Christopher Spicer Janku, 23 at the time, was with 4 friends around 1:30 AM on the night of August 17, 2008 when the car one of them was driving was pulled over for purportedly running a stop sign on Wilshire Avenue, in Downtown Fullerton. Chris tells his story:
All rookie looking officers who were looking for fun, I’ve never heard so much rude language from any cop. They arrested me on false charges of being drunk in public, (even though they wouldn’t give me a sobriety test even after I asked them to give me one because they knew I wasn’t intoxicated). I was sitting on the curb with my hands behind my back, a cop came over to put hand cuffs on me, he told me to put my hands behind my back, but they already were. Before I could even say “officer my hands are already crossed behind my back” the officer grabbed my neck and slammed my face into the curb while yelling out “stop resisting!” Another officer grabbed me by the legs and dragged me by the knees, shredding my knee caps.
There were five officers at the scene. The gangleader and arresting office was one Officer Perry Thayer. Janku goes on to describe his torture at the hands of this dedicated public servant:
Another officer then TOOK HIS BOOT and slammed it on my head, pinning it between the curb and used it as leverage to squeeze pressure on my head. I HONESTLY THOUGHT I WAS GOING TO DIE, I WAS SCREAMING PLEASE STOP I’M NOT RESISTING, I THOUGHT MY HEAD WAS GOING TO CAVE IN. I still have migraines to this day. another cop came over and dropped kneed me in the back. Everybody watching was in awe, THEY KEPT YELLING OUT “PLEASE STOP, HE’S NOT RESISTING!”
He (Thayer) was the one who slammed me face first into a curb and then put my head in the gutter face first with his boot on my head. He purposely put my face into a gutter full of disgusting dirty gutter water to the point where I was almost choking on it, and pushed down on my head to the point where my head almost caved it and I was screaming for my life. If you look at my mug shot, there is nothing but dirty, muddy gutter water and blood all over my face.
Next, our helpful Bobbies – Officer Thayer and his partner Officer Anthony Diaz – took Janku on a joyride from hell. Chris explains:
They put me in the squad car without seatbelting me in and went on a joy ride while blaring satanic heavy metal music in my ear until my eardrums almost exploded. Around 6-7 times they would hit the gas and then slam on the brakes, so that I was forced to keep cracking my face on the cage.
FFFF readers will recall that although clearly unconstitutional, this is a common FPD procedure, informally known as a “screen test.” Spicer remembers seeing the car pass the Police station, and asked the cops where they were taking him. Their response: “Shut the F up.” After the brake-checks:
I came to the department and automatically filed a complaint about the brutality. They put me in a jail cell bleeding from my head down to my feet and bruised and battered WITHOUT EVEN GIVING ME MEDICAL AID.
Janku was unable to figure out what exactly had set Thayer off. Maybe when he asked Thayer to not thumb through the photos on his cell phone? Or perhaps this cretinous goon needs no excuse to assault, batter, and violate the civil rights of the taxpayers who pay his ample salary? Janku’s friend was arrested as well, for simply asking for his ID back from the cops who had taken and failed to return it.
As for the police brutality complaint? A complete and total stonewall. The detective in charge deliberately misinterpreted the clear audio recording of Janku’s friends yelling “he’s not resisting!” and asked him “why were you resisting?” He also had the temerity to ask Janku why he had blood and mud all over his face.
After checking regularly for months and getting no response, Janku was told recently that he had better contact an attorney. Of course, this is after the statute of limitations had run out and a lawsuit is impossible. What is Janku left with, besides the bruises and migraines? Just the awful memories:
I’ve been afraid to go outside my house ever since, I have nightmares and panic attacks from the injustice.
Janku adds that he is unwilling to go to downtown Fullerton since the incident, and one of his friends there that evening is so terrified he refuses to set foot in Fullerton, period. Way to help out our local economy, coppers!
Unlike the marginally more fortunate Veth Mam and Edward Quinonez, Janku is unable to sue the City and make them pay for their abuses. And Officer Thayer? Why, he went on to win the coveted Turkey Bowl police football championship along with his buds – the noted false arrest/perjury specialists Kenton Hampton and Frank Nguyen, of Veth Mam lawsuit fame.
Just another night of death-metal mayhem, beating, torture, false arrest, and random abuse of the public by Fullerton’s Finest. No pattern to see here, folks. Move along, now. No need for that department-wide Department of Justice investigation of police brutality and misconduct. Keep moving.
Thursday afternoon I took a break from work and headed to the Civic Center in Santa Ana, to check out the public protest outside the Orange County District Attorney’s office. About 40-50 people had gathered on the sweltering hot sidewalks on both sides of Civic Center Drive, frankly a larger crowd than I expected given that A) it was hotter than Hell B) it was the middle of a work day and C) did I mention it was hotter than Hell?
We all know there’s laws for us and there’s laws for cops. The sort of stuff Fullerton Police Department members have been busted doing lately, or accused of in court proceedings would land you or me in jail. For a long time. It’s hilarious to listen to the FPD apologists bemoan the “lynch-type mob” of protesters that want answers before the official cover-up, er, investigation is over, thus denying our fine officers “due process.”
The latest example of the double standard that exists is the revelation that the Kelly Thomas killers were permitted to view (and review, and review again, one surmises) the taxpayer-owned video that shows the killing. This is just fine and dandy according to interim Chief Kevin Hamilton because it helps our boys in blue refresh their memory as they cook up and orchestrate plausible accounts of what they did. But it is not okay for for the public to see the video because it might color the recollections of eye-witnesses!
The same crapola is going on with the request to hire one Michael Gennaco to come into Fullerton and have a look around. Forget the fact that this is going to end up costing the taxpayers the better part of $100K. The real issue is why the City is embarking in this direction when the so-called investigations by the FPD, the DA, and the FBI are ongoing!
We are not permitted to seek answers while these alleged investigations are ongoing, and yet the Three Blind Mice (hopefully Whitaker and Quirk-Silva are smart enough to vote no) are willing to instigate yet another “investigation” at the same time.
It seems very clear to me that the Gennaco hiring, and the attempt to make it appear as both an emergency and some sort of reform action is nothing but a PR gimmick to make the City look like it is finally doing something proactive in the wake of the Kelly Thomas homicide. Of course it’s nothing but a cheap trick to try to stem the tide of public relations disasters that have befallen Fullerton since the image of Kelly’s battered face and crushed neck went globally viral.
We may not always have agreed with the liberal activism of Fullerton’s Ralph Kennedy, but there’s no doubt that the engineer-turned-civil-rights-activist was the real deal – a committed believer in social justice who was willing to take unpopular stands on behalf of the causes for which he advocated.
In its obituary of him in 1998, the Los Angeles Times wrote: “He was one of those rare people who saw things as they should be. He wasn’t willing to sit in his comfort while others in the world were suffering. He always felt like he needed to dig in and do something to bring about justice, to take action, to risk his own comfort in order to make things better.”
But Kennedy’s two children – Sharon Kennedy, who is publisher of the Fullerton Observer, which Ralph and his wife, Natalie, founded in the 1970s; and Rusty Kennedy, head of the Orange County Human Relations Commission, which claims to advocate for concepts similar to those advocated by the elder Kennedys – are frauds. Their actions (or inaction, really) following the brutal slaying of Kelly Thomas by Fullerton police thugs shows how they have become lapdogs for the political establishment, which is the very opposite of the behavior displayed by their Dad. Unfortunately, modern liberals usually defend government power and abuse — they don’t stand up for the poor and downtrodden any more.
The Observer has run various news stories about the Thomas killing at the hands of cops, but the stories read like articles hatched in the Fullerton PD’s press department. There is no sense of outrage and an unconscionable reliance on official explanations and official sources. (It’s as if Ralph Kennedy, known as a crusader against housing discrimination, took at face value the official government explanations of why black folks were treated as second-class citizens in the old days. “Don’t worry, folks, Gov. George Wallace and his able team of government officials will get to the bottom of it!”) The Observer, promoting the lame efforts of Rusty and his commission, runs a story that declares: “The Orange County Human Relations Commission is responding to community requests for help in the tragic beating death of Kelly Thomas. On behalf of the Commission, Rusty Kennedy endorsed the idea of an outside, independent investigation of police practices and procedures in the case and more broadly across the department. He gave City Manager Joe Felz an evaluation of Michael Gennaco for the LA County Office of Independent Review. The Commission has worked with Gennaco in hate crime cases and most recently in setting up an OIR in Orange County, which is now staffed by Stephen Connelly, one of Gennaco’s proteges.”
The Observer and Kennedy should be denouncing this brutal attack as a hate crime and staging sit-ins and other demonstrations. Instead, they are joining the official whitewash and telling us to trust these not-so-outside investigations. Connelly has not produced a single serious investigation since he became the head of the supposedly independent commission that operates basically at the behest of the Sheriff. You might as well ask Dick Jones to produce an outside investigation.
Fortunately, this blog is filling in the role that lapdog players such as the Fullerton Observer play. Fortunately, Orange County residents are starting to learn that the Human Relations Commission is a way for limousine liberals to live large on other people’s money while pretending to stand up for the principles that true liberals such as Ralph Kennedy actually stood up for.