A police commission is needed for Atherton Atherton, posted by John P Johns, a resident of another community, on Feb 27, 2010 at 5:24 pm
Yesterday, February 25, 2010 I submitted a citizen's complaint. This complaint included the following allegations of misconduct within the Atherton Police Deartment:
Misappropriation of public resources
Unlawful search and seizure
Attached to my citizen's complaint was documetation obtained via public records request supporting each of the allegations listed above.
Mr. Peter Carpenter, President of the ACIL, was present when I filed this compaint.
While preparing my citizen's complaint, Mr. Carpenter related to me his philosophy of management. It is a very common sense approach and is worthy of repeating.
Management should communicate clear expectations;
Subordinates should be held accountable whenever and if ever they fail to meet established standards of conduct
Transparency is essential, in the public sector and especially in the case of law enforcement
Litigation should be considered a last, rather than a first resort.
Mr. Carpenter also expressed little patience or tolerance for those who make allegations wihtout providing the factual basis that would enable a manager or a third party to evaluate the merits of the allegation.
Mr. Carpenter spoke to me plainly but eloquently. Mr. Carpenter provided the best possible reason for a Police Commission. I hope the community of Atherton is as moved by Mr. Carpenters words as was I.
Finally, there are many reasons for me stopping by Town hall to file my complaint. The most important reason was to show that Mr. Buckheit's unfortunate experience is by no means an isolated event. Instead it constitutes a pattern of conduct and a culture that should not be tolerated.
If Chief Guerra is serious about cleaning up the Atherton Police Department, he has his work cut out for him.
Whether or not Chief Guerra is sincere with respect to his stated intentions will soon become known to all.
Posted by running scared, a resident of another community, on Feb 27, 2010 at 7:55 pm
In my opinion, Mr. Carpenter should consider tempering his impatience and intolerance towards former victims of the APD.
As a wealthy and well known administrator, he personally has little to fear regarding the possibility of harassment, illegal surveillance, frivolous lawsuit, or false accusations.
It's a very intimidating experience when you realize that your local unconstrained and unsupervised police department has marked you as a political enemy and you have no wealth, influence or resources to protect yourself.
In order to provide Mr. Carpenter with the factual basis he requires, those who are vulnerable must expose themselves to the possibility of all sorts of covert retaliation.
Sorry, but his is not a realistic standard or demand.
Try a bit of empathy before reaching your judgments, is my suggestion.
Any advocate of reform is currently a long way from providing the safety from retaliation from many local sources that will be required to bring former victims out into the open...
Look what happened to Mr. Johns. Do you suppose for one second that this was not intended to be a message to anyone who dared to stand up?
Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of the Atherton: Lindenwood neighborhood, on Feb 28, 2010 at 8:39 am
Running scared states:"In order to provide Mr. Carpenter with the factual basis he requires, those who are vulnerable must expose themselves to the possibility of all sorts of covert retaliation.
Sorry, but his is not a realistic standard or demand."
I am pleased to be an advocate for a fair hearing for those like Jon Buckheit and John Johns who come forward with evidence and facts to support their allegations.
There is nothing that I can do for individuals who claim that they were harmed but who refuse even to identify themselves much less provide evidence and facts. It is a logical and ethical impossibility for me to support a case about which I know none of the facts.
Posted by Thelma, a resident of the Atherton: other neighborhood, on Feb 28, 2010 at 9:58 am
Request for Empathy -Denied apparently
You could skip (self appointed) Peter entirely you know, and remember that you can reach out to other victims directly for help-the lists is getting large enough now that a grand jury or even the Almanac may take a an interest in what you have to say in a way that you may feel more protected.
Posted by John P Johns, a resident of another community, on Feb 28, 2010 at 10:43 am
I know what fear feels like. I have felt fear myself.
Having said that I do not agree with running scared. Instead I have come to believe that posting anonymously to this forum allegations without sufficient information to corroborate or validate the incident or allegation does not serve any purpose.
Peter Carpenter is a pillar of the community. Peter Carpenter is a busy man. Before we ask of a man like Peter Carpenter to lend his prestige and time towards a cause we believe is just, we owe it to him and to ourselves to offer up full disclosure.
Yes by doing so we may be made to feel vulnerable. However this wouldn't be the first time one his put one's self in harm's way for a just cause.
Posted by Editor, a resident of another community, on Feb 28, 2010 at 10:51 am
I'm taking down posts that don't contribute to a constructive dialogue and comments by a poster using multiple names. I'm also restricting this thread to registered users to see if that keeps the discussion on a constructive level. - Editor.
Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community, on Mar 2, 2010 at 6:44 pm Michael G. Stogner is a member (registered user) of Almanac Online
I want to address another category of crimes which are not that easy to prove. You can see how difficult it is for people to come forward with crimes that are easy to prove.
Jon Buckheit case for example: easy to prove, its public information, its been discussed in at least 2 public meetings and to this day the City Manager and Police Chief have not identified the Police Officer who has committed a felony against Mr.Buckheit. Until this simple case is solved there is no reason on earth that running scared should feel confident in reporting anything he/she feels might cause harm.
With that said I have to say in the many years I've been doing this type of work it is the first time a town and a citizen have stepped up to even offer any kind of solution to the victims/some residents some not. GREAT JOB.