Palo Alto Police – The “Gang’s” all here!

PAPD Tatoo

When I asked this PAPD officer if he had ever been arrested he had that quizzical look upon his face.   I thought it was an appropriate question given the fact that many notorious “gang” members bare the marking of their trade.

When I questioned him further he said it was for “religious” reasons.  Okay, I can except that besides in reality it’s an expression of one’s First Amendment right.

Artistic expression comes to my mind.  Well I decided to do a little digging not far, I Googled like the most of us and found that the notorious “El Sereno gang” makes use of a similar marking.

I’m not sure of the appropriateness of displaying Tattoos only because of their gang related links or ties.

There’s something to be said about the proper attire of law enforcement officials given ones place in our community.  Does it send the wrong message?  Some would argue a resounding no!!

Well consider this.  Would we question or say anything if President Obama had the US Constitution tattooed on his chest as he uncovered it all during a national news conference?

I think there’s a time and place for tattoos.  But certain tattoos are just too close to gang related activities.

A Nazi lightning bolt on your neck or a swastika on your forehead for some, is a sure giveaway when picking someone out of a police line up.

Well I spotted this officer or gang member right off. And I think for anyone this would have been the logical choice.

I tried to interview Ray Bacchetti – HRC (City of Palo Alto Human Relations Committee) and police volunteer for comment.  He stated the following:

“Dear Mark:

I’ve changed my mind.  Don’t want to play gotcha.
Ray”

I recall years ago I complained about the conduct of a certain officer Dan Ryan to another officer and she responded by saying, well that maybe true, but I can’t speak out against the PAPD “Brotherhood”.

That being said, what do our surrounding policing agency’s have to say on the subject of Tattoos and police officers?  Just Google!

CITY OF EAST PALO ALTO RONALD L.DAVIS

POLICE DEPARTMENT CHIEF OF POLICE 141 Demeter Street (650) 853-3125

East Palo Alto, CA 94303 rdavis@cityofepa.org

_________________________________________________________________

Police Department to Publish Operating Policies Online

“No Visible Tattoo Policy First on Website”

July 27 – Effective August 1, 2007, the East Palo Alto Police Department will publish its operating policies online for public view and access.

By providing unfettered access to policies that govern officers’ actions, the Department will enhance its professionalism and be more open, accessible and accountable to the community.

“I believe this information will assist the community to better evaluate the Department, understand the legal actions of officers, and identify actions that are not in accordance with established policies”, according to Chief Davis.

The Department will start the program by posting a new policy that prohibits officers from visibly displaying tattoos and body art while in uniform. Future postings include a policy that governs the Department’s acceptance, processing and investigation of citizen complaints, and a policy that prohibits racial profiling and requires data collection for all stops made by officers.

The Department recently had all of its policies reviewed and updated by a legal expert. These policies are under final review by the Chief of Police and will be posted on the website after they have been finalized and published.

CITY OF EAST PALO ALTO POLICE DEPARTMENT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Chapter:

Subject: Tattoos and Body Art Prohibition for Employees Supersedes: Signature of Issuing Authority: Chief Ronald L. Davis Body Art and Tattoo Prohibition for Employees

It is the policy of the East Palo Alto Police Department that all uniformed employees and explorers maintain the highest standards of professional appearance when interacting with the public and representing the Department.

I. CORE VALUES

Maintaining a professional appearance is critically important to fostering public trust and confidence in law enforcement, and to exceeding the standards of the profession.

This order incorporates the Department’s core values of Service, Teamwork, Respect, Integrity, Vision, and Excellence (STRIVE).

II. GENERAL POLICY

A. All uniformed employees and explorers are prohibited from displaying any body art, tattoo(s), intentional scarring, mutilation, or dental ornamentation while on duty or representing the department in any official capacity.

B. Any currently employed uniformed employee and explorer with existing body art, tattoo(s), intentional scarring, or mutilation that is visible shall have the following options:

1. Uniformed employee shall cover existing body art, tattoo(s), intentional scarring, or mutilation by wearing the long-sleeve shirt and/or uniform pants/breeches.

2. Cover the existing body art, tattoo(s), intentional scarring, or mutilation with a skin tone patch or make-up.

3. Have the tattoo(s) or brand(s) removed at the employee’s expense.

C. Body art, tattoo(s), brand(s), intentional scarring, and/or mutilation that is not able to be covered or concealed is prohibited. This includes, but is not limited to; foreign

Policy Number: No. of Pages: 2 Effective Date: 1 Aug 07 Date Revised: N/A

objects inserted under the skin, pierced, split or forked tongue, and/or stretched out holes in the ears.

D. Uniformed employees and explorers shall not have any dental ornamentation. The use of gold, platinum, silver, or other veneer caps for the purposes of ornamentation are prohibited. Teeth, whether natural, capped, or veneered, shall not be ornamented with designs, jewels, initials, etc.

By order of Ronald L. Davis

Chief of Police

East Palo Alto Police Tattoo Policy

Up-date:  http://bit.ly/cIrSJX

EAST PALO ALTO / Chief draws plan to destroy gang / FBI among agencies joining fight to stem longtime problem

Davis is also seeking help from state parole officials. He wants restrictions on paroled gang members’ movements in the city, a requirement that paroled members have their gang-related tattoos removed, and mandatory community service for parolees. The question is, should police officers also have there “gang” related tats removed?

Bicycling Etiquette

When you’re out and about your business on a Saturday morning, and you see a stranger in need, what do you do?

I was that stranger in need last Saturday morning, out on Canada Road in Woodside with a flat tire on my bicycle and a shortage of repair gear, owing to one relatively large rock on in the bicycle lane. As I fiddled with my bike, trying to engineer a solution, Mark Petersen-Perez rolled to a stop with an offer of assistance, a spare tire and a patch kit. None of these were extras he was offering. They were his own spares, for his ride, but he’s spent enough time cycling on Bay Area roads to know that the kindness of strangers can keep you moving along. A few minutes later, I was off and riding again, able to enjoy another 4 hours of sunshine, rather than spending a few hours walking my bike home, or waiting for a ride. The first thing I did was ride down to a bike shop to purchase some more spare tires!

Besides the immediate benefits of a free spare, the incident gave me something to reflect on for the rest of my ride. I go cycling to have some entertaining “me time”, yet I regularly have some of my best random interactions with complete strangers while on solo bike rides. I might get a free spare tire from a stranger, or stop to help the next person with their flat. “Need any help” is one of the most common phrase uttered between anonymous cyclists out on the roads of California. This has happened to me – one way or another – in Woodside, Cupertino, Menlo Park, Pleasanton, and more places than I can remember.

But mutual support doesn’t just extend between cyclists. There are small kindnesses that a road cyclist can extend to drivers, hikers and horse riders, and vice versa. And I always carry a little cash on my rides – particularly in the summer – on the off chance that some of the local children have set up a lemonade stand. Not only is a cold cup of fresh lemonade a nice treat, but I think about how excited a child is about their little lemonade stand venture, and how disappointed they’d be without customers, and the negative lesson that might teach them.

Taking a short minute out of a long day to make sure that the random people you run across are a tiny bit better off for having run into you can go a long way towards making our little patch of the globe the best it can be.

Palo Alto Free…Classifieds!

Today, Palo Alto Free Press launches its classifieds section. Guess what? That’s free too!

So, not only can you visit us to speak your mind for free, but also to sell those golf clubs that have been sitting around in your garage…FOR FREE!

Maybe you’re looking for a job. Trying to find a date? Looking for an apartment? Browse our classifieds. Have a job to advertise? An apartment to rent? Post a classified ad. It’s Free.

Think Craig’s List, but only for Palo Alto! Cool huh?

Keep in mind that we just launched this TODAY, so ads will be few and far between. But, you can fix that…advertise something!

Click on “Classifieds” above to start

Apple Issues Statement Re: Signal Loss

You’ve probably heard all the fuss lately over Apple’s new “Jesus Phone” and its signal loss.

It’s purported that if you hold the phone in your left hand, your skin makes contact with the antennas and signal drops like $199 on launch day.

There have been a number of responses from Apple, even Steve himself telling someone via email, “don’t hold it that way”.

So there really hasn’t been much of an explanation about what’s really going on.

Until now. Apple just released a formal PR statement today that should explain some things.

Here it is, verbatim:

Dear iPhone 4 Users,

The iPhone 4 has been the most successful product launch in Apple’s history. It has been judged by reviewers around the world to be the best smartphone ever, and users have told us that they love it. So we were surprised when we read reports of reception problems, and we immediately began investigating them. Here is what we have learned.

To start with, gripping almost any mobile phone in certain ways will reduce its reception by 1 or more bars. This is true of iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, as well as many Droid, Nokia and RIM phones. But some users have reported that iPhone 4 can drop 4 or 5 bars when tightly held in a way which covers the black strip in the lower left corner of the metal band. This is a far bigger drop than normal, and as a result some have accused the iPhone 4 of having a faulty antenna design.

At the same time, we continue to read articles and receive hundreds of emails from users saying that iPhone 4 reception is better than the iPhone 3GS. They are delighted. This matches our own experience and testing. What can explain all of this?

We have discovered the cause of this dramatic drop in bars, and it is both simple and surprising.

Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength. For example, we sometimes display 4 bars when we should be displaying as few as 2 bars. Users observing a drop of several bars when they grip their iPhone in a certain way are most likely in an area with very weak signal strength, but they don’t know it because we are erroneously displaying 4 or 5 bars. Their big drop in bars is because their high bars were never real in the first place.

To fix this, we are adopting AT&T’s recently recommended formula for calculating how many bars to display for a given signal strength. The real signal strength remains the same, but the iPhone’s bars will report it far more accurately, providing users a much better indication of the reception they will get in a given area. We are also making bars 1, 2 and 3 a bit taller so they will be easier to see.

We will issue a free software update within a few weeks that incorporates the corrected formula. Since this mistake has been present since the original iPhone, this software update will also be available for the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G.

We have gone back to our labs and retested everything, and the results are the same— the iPhone 4’s wireless performance is the best we have ever shipped. For the vast majority of users who have not been troubled by this issue, this software update will only make your bars more accurate. For those who have had concerns, we apologize for any anxiety we may have caused.

As a reminder, if you are not fully satisfied, you can return your undamaged iPhone to any Apple Retail Store or the online Apple Store within 30 days of purchase for a full refund.

We hope you love the iPhone 4 as much as we do.

Thank you for your patience and support.

Apple

http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2010/07/02appleletter.html

Well, let’s see if this puts out some of the fires out there. It better, I just bought one!

Dear iPhone 4 Users,

The iPhone 4 has been the most successful product launch in Apple’s history. It has been judged by reviewers around the world to be the best smartphone ever, and users have told us that they love it. So we were surprised when we read reports of reception problems, and we immediately began investigating them. Here is what we have learned.

To start with, gripping almost any mobile phone in certain ways will reduce its reception by 1 or more bars. This is true of iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, as well as many Droid, Nokia and RIM phones. But some users have reported that iPhone 4 can drop 4 or 5 bars when tightly held in a way which covers the black strip in the lower left corner of the metal band. This is a far bigger drop than normal, and as a result some have accused the iPhone 4 of having a faulty antenna design.

At the same time, we continue to read articles and receive hundreds of emails from users saying that iPhone 4 reception is better than the iPhone 3GS. They are delighted. This matches our own experience and testing. What can explain all of this?

We have discovered the cause of this dramatic drop in bars, and it is both simple and surprising.

Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength. For example, we sometimes display 4 bars when we should be displaying as few as 2 bars. Users observing a drop of several bars when they grip their iPhone in a certain way are most likely in an area with very weak signal strength, but they don’t know it because we are erroneously displaying 4 or 5 bars. Their big drop in bars is because their high bars were never real in the first place.

To fix this, we are adopting AT&T’s recently recommended formula for calculating how many bars to display for a given signal strength. The real signal strength remains the same, but the iPhone’s bars will report it far more accurately, providing users a much better indication of the reception they will get in a given area. We are also making bars 1, 2 and 3 a bit taller so they will be easier to see.

We will issue a free software update within a few weeks that incorporates the corrected formula. Since this mistake has been present since the original iPhone, this software update will also be available for the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G.

We have gone back to our labs and retested everything, and the results are the same— the iPhone 4’s wireless performance is the best we have ever shipped. For the vast majority of users who have not been troubled by this issue, this software update will only make your bars more accurate. For those who have had concerns, we apologize for any anxiety we may have caused.

As a reminder, if you are not fully satisfied, you can return your undamaged iPhone to any Apple Retail Store or the online Apple Store within 30 days of purchase for a full refund.

We hope you love the iPhone 4 as much as we do.

Thank you for your patience and support.

Apple