The Cop Death Threat: Agent Provocateur or Just Some Nutjob?

The other day some sick individual left this hideous comment attached to a blog post regarding Fullerton police officers:


That’s messed up! Our initial analysis led us to the almost certain conclusion that this rather obvious death threat against Fullerton’s Finest was actually left by a member of Fullerton’s own police union, the FPOA, in an effort to stir up trouble for us bloggers and draw much needed sympathy for their own members. Agent provocateurs is what I believe they call police officers who pretend to join in an otherwise peaceful rally and then incite violence, usually in order to facilitate a brutal police beatdown against pesky protestors.

But, in this post 9-11 world, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Which is why we decided to notify the Fullerton Police Chief and the FBI about this potential threat to officer safety.

Thanks. You never can be too sure.

Is it illegal to call for the death of police officers? I have no idea. But it really is a horrible thing to say, and none of us bloggers here would condone any such sentiment. We should leave it up to our law enforcement specialists to look into it and decide for themselves.

We’ll let you know if we hear of an investigation.

A Fig Tree and the Suppression of Evidence of Harassment

Should the city actively seek to suppress any evidence of harassment by city staff from the court record when prosecuting code violations? That’s exactly what’s happening in the strange case of an allegedly overgrown fig tree in south Fullerton.

A few weeks ago this woman, henceforth known as “The Fig Tree Lady,” came before council to tell her side of the story in a code enforcement case against her fig tree, which was allegedly hanging over a public sidewalk last year. The Fig Lady accused city staff of singling her out for criminal prosecution as retribution for her embarrassing victory over the city attorney (Jones & Mayer) several years prior.

That same day, the city attorney had filed a motion in court to suppress any evidence of harassment by City employees.

The fig lady’s guilt or innocence will be decided in court, and is not really the point here. But why is the city using it’s legal muscle to suppress any evidence that it’s code enforcement officers might be harassing citizens?

What if this woman did have evidence that the city attorney and staff were giving her case “special treatment”? Shouldn’t she be able to make her case to the judge? Is someone using the city’s expensive legal resources to bully and silence this outspoken critic in some sort of personal vendetta as the Fig Lady claims?

Exhibit A: The overgrown fig tree

If the motion is granted, the woman would not even be allowed to submit this current photo of her tree (courtesy of Greg Sebourn) as evidence that the situation has been corrected.

Obviously the tree is not a threat anymore. Why is the city attorney still spending our money to silence and prosecute this woman? And are they really worried that she could prove her claims of harassment?

The Great Dorothy Lane Airsoft Caper of ’09

This is a recollection of the day when 11 Fullerton PD units saved us from a plastic gunfight.

We were living on the North side of Dorothy Lane at this time.  I would not have allowed this if I were home, but my son Riley and his three buddies had an Airsoft war in the front yard.  There was one kid with an automatic Airsoft rifle and the other 3 had cheesy plastic handguns with orange tips.

My very cool neighbor Paul, who was working in his front yard, told me later that he knew the cops were going to come because some of the people driving by were watching pretty intently.

Obviously, a dumb idea.  At about dusk, three or four Fullerton cops came screeching up, pulled their guns and told the boys to freeze, drop their weapons, etc…  I’m fine with all of this.  They’ve got to protect the community.  Within a minute or two there were 11 units on scene.  One of the boys’ girlfriends pulled up while it was happening and took these pictures.

At that point, my neighbor, who is about 56, very articulate and grew up in the neighborhood, told one of the cops near him that the boys were just playing airsoft and that it’s OK.

Even after the cops were informed that it was an airsoft game, they made the boys put their hands on their heads, back toward them, lie on their stomachs, handcuff them and put them in one of the cars. My neighbor began chewing this cop’s ear that he could not believe they were not putting an end to this event, now that they knew what was going on.

The 8oz clear plastic guns were lying on the ground near where they had the boys lie down.  There were real guns pointed at the four boys the whole time.  After the cops got all the kids in the car, they sent officers with shotguns down either side of my house, into the backyard and then asked for permission to search the house… which my handcuffed son gave them.

When I talked to some higher ranking guy at the station the next day, he told me that he once was on a bust in Fullerton where guys were out front with Airsoft guns while there were real bad guys with real guns, pistol whipping the homeowners inside.  He declined to get me the details of that incident.

I will say this:  Once the boys were in the back of the car and the crime scene was secured, my son told me that the police did NOT condescend to them, berate them or generally act like power hungry jackasses.  I was told that the boys having their shirts off had something to do with the reaction. It seems that speed freaks are particularly fond of going shirtless. Well, so are boys that practice for Eastside’s High school Worship Group in my garage when it’s 90 degrees outside.  Plus, it’s more fun to shoot somebody with an Airsoft gun when their shirt is off.

This happened more than a year ago and I was torn as to whether or not to allow FFFF to post the photos.  After this much time has passed, I figured it was worthwhile just to point out that Fullerton is adequately staffed to have 11 units show up to a plastic gun fight.

Speaking of Fires…

On August 29th, 2010 at 4:28 am a three-alarm fire was reported in a building structure with six businesses at 306 N. Raymond Ave. About 80 firefighters from the Fullerton Fire Department, Brea Fire Department, Anaheim Fire Department and the Orange County Fire Authority were dispatched to bring the fire under control.

Fullerton Fire Marshal Julie Kunze told the Register “The structure itself is a total loss. We’re estimating the structure itself at probably $2.2 million with unknown content.”

The fire department has taped off portions of the parking lot, as charred debris covered the ground around the badly burned building. The roof had completely collapsed.

That was six months ago. Today the charred building is still charred and the site is now a real eyesore. How long should it take for the city to issue a notice to abate the public nuisance?

If this mess were in Sunny Hills, would it be any different?

Bomb Threat

The Hunt Branch of the Fullerton Library was quietly evacuated yesterday afternoon as staff told patrons they “weren’t allowed to say” why the library was suddenly closing. Whispers of a bomb threat were heard on the way towards the exit.

The homeless clean up team.

Cops and a city crew were still on the scene today, apparently cleaning out a small homeless encampment on the library grounds. A librarian confirmed that there was in fact some sort of bomb threat that caused the library to close yesterday. For some reason the library’s computer system was offline, too.

Is any of this related to anything? Who knows.

Smash and Grab in Fullerton

According to an La Times story, here, by ace reporter Sam Quinones, a spate of smash and grab robberies has plagued the Southland recently, including the jewely mart richere in Fullerton’s Metrocenter. Lots of untraceable gold and freeway access are the likely causes. Some of the culprits have been identified as members of various LA County Crips affiliations branching out into the depths of suburbia.

Apparently the resourceful young men’s MO is to attack in numbers, smash cases with hammers, cause confusion, and make off in multiple getaway vehicles.

I certainly hope Fullerton PD is more successful solving this theft than they have been getting to the bottom of the Roland Chi sign theft ring.

And in passing, I note Fullerton’s own Sgt. Mike Chlebowski is quoted at the end of the article. Just knowing we have somebody named Mike Chlebowski on the force makes me feel a whole lot better about today.