In Memory of Kari Prager 10/21/1947 – 11/14/2010

I was terribly saddened to hear the news of Kari’s passing.  We go back at least 25 years having owned just about all of the BMW motorcycle product line.  I enjoyed many, many a Sunday ride with Kari and the “Gang”.

I remember having purchased a 1936 BMW R12 flathead twin and asked Kari if I could have it shipped to this shop in Mountain View, he said on one condition.  What’s that, if he could ride it first?

I also, recall Kari as one of my sponsors of a newly released product, SmartConnector ® a device which I turned out in my garage with a product distribution nationwide.  Kari was one of my first commercial customers.  Kari will be dearly missed by his family and droves of BMW friends.

Penisula Car Owners Warned About “Fix the Fender” Scheme.

Parking Lot Auto Body Work Gone Wrong

If you are approached by a person at home or in a parking lot who is offering to fix a dent on your car, think twice before agreeing – you could be getting ripped off.

Greg Bedford, of Bedford Autobody in Mountain View, recently had two customers come into his shop who were targets of the “fix the fender” scam.

“I have this truck in here now where the guy came out to my customer’s house and said he could fix the dent for $200. He finished and said, ‘Don’t worry about the paint; I’ll come back and paint it, but I need to have some money today.’ He left and never came back. It’s going to cost my customer 3 times as much. The guy stretched the metal and even put Bondo [autobody filler] over the stripes.”

Bedford had a second story: “One woman was at a shopping mall, and one of these guys approached her and asked her if she wanted him to fix her car’s dent’s. He said he could do it in the parking lot while she was shopping.” She fell for it. It cost her $1200.00 there was Bondo hanging off the rear bumper,left tailight and the left quarter-panel. He told her to take the car to her body shop for the paint, but, of course, that Bondo had to come off and be redone.

IF A CAR IS HIT hard enough,the frame will bend. If the frame is not straightened, the car is virtualy worthless. It’s like a house with a rotting foundation. The way it looks on the outside dosen’t mean much if the foundation is crumbling.

Cathy Lewis, co-owner of Bel-Carlos Autobody in Belmont, said she knows of many customers who have been taken by these “body men.”

They (the solicitors) slapped on some bondo and that was it; there was no preparation, no taking out the dent, parts didn’t matter- it was just a big ripoff. Anybody can do what they did.”

When I was in high school, a friend of mine was approached outside his home by a guy who said he could fix the dent in his Chevrolet Suburban Wagon. He packed body filler on the damaged panel, took the money and left. The next time the wagon was washed, all it took was a garden hose to knock the filler off.

Adam Smith, national director of Collision Repair Specialists, went on to say when a car is in an accident, the metal is stretched and has to be put back to its original shape using cold water and a torch. “It’s an art. Only one out of two body men have the capacity to heat-shrink” he said. He added that these “body men” do little grinding on the dent, and pack filler on. “Filler should never be over an eighth of an inch thick”, Smith said, “if it’s too thick, it will crack. It will cost three times as much to undo what was done and correct it. What I find ironic is there is a shortage of body men. A good body man can earn as much as $80,000 a year in Northern California.

“If these guys were good, they would have jobs.”

East Palo Alto police officer Nick Bennett gives this advice, “Unless it’s a reputable body shop, don’t let people work on your car” he said that otherwise, “it’s generally a rip-off.”

FOR OVER 30 YEARS: Owner, Greg Bedford of Bedford of Autobody has seen it all. He is not only the owner of bedford autobody, but does hands on Autobody and Painting. He has restored numerous classic cars and has traveled through out the country, Showing some of his classic car’s in numerous award winning car show’s.

In June, 2010 Greg won 1st place in his class at the Palo Alto Concours D Elegance, with the showing of his 1952 Buick Super 2 door hard top, which he restored himself.

“In the future, if some guy is coming to your home or to a store parking lot to repair dents on your car, don’t fall for it, it can’t be done.” In order to do autobody and painting, it has to be done at a reputable body shop that is licensed with the State of California Bureau of Auto Repair. Bedford Autobody has the facility and the skilled technicians to do the work to the highest standard.

Like our motto say’s quality work: “Done Right The First Time”

PAPD Pat Down Policy – Police Auditors Report

In the 90’s, **Luis Verbrea had his admirers too – Dennis Burns and Pat Dwyer.
Police Auditors Report December 2009 – Complaint of Unnecessary Search and Discourtesy  #C-2009-001
Do we have another “ticking time bomb” on the PAPD force?

“Synopsis: An officer pulled a motorist over because she had a non-functioning taillight. When the motorist could not produce a driver’s license, the officer discovered that the motorist’s driver’s license had been suspended.

The officer informed the motorist that he would need to have the car towed and performed a cursory pat down search of the woman before allowing her to remove personal items from the car.

The motorist later complained to the Department that the officer had been officious, discourteous and that the pat down was intrusive and unnecessary.

Recommendation: The complaint investigation was conducted promptly and thoroughly. The Auditor reviewed the original officer’s citation, the investigator’s interviews and report, the investigator’s supervisor’s evaluation, and the MAV videotapes in this case.

We concluded that the officer maintained a professional demeanor during the incident. The pat down search, while not always employed in these circumstances, constituted a justifiable precaution to employ with a somewhat uncooperative motorist and was minimally intrusive.

(On or off camera Mr. Gennaco?)

We note that the PAPD does not have a policy that specifies that a pat down must or should be done by an officer of the same sex.

Resolution/Corrective Action: The complainant was notified of the results of the investigation by letter.”

PAFP notes: Gennaco makes no note or recommendation of any, any policy change period and REFUSES to re-investigate any sexual misconduct by the stopping / offending officer. * Italics added

Norristown officer a ‘ticking time bomb’

By Craig R. McCoy

Inquirer Staff Writer

The police chief of Norristown wanted to fire Claude Lacombe, an officer with a reputation for arrogance and aggression.  “A ticking time bomb,” former Chief Thomas Stone says now. “There was a whole list of things that said to anyone with any grain of sense,

‘You’ve got to get rid of this person.’ ”

The town finally did fire Lacombe – after he forced a woman he stopped while on patrol to have oral sex. He ended up going to prison, and the borough was forced to pay $372,000 to his alleged victims. It settled the last of two lawsuits in 2004.

Lacombe had his admirers during his four years on the force in the 1990s. Once commended for bravery during a riot, Lacombe harassed drug dealers and piled up arrests.  He also was known for being “aggressive… violent, even,” in the words of Lacombe’s former lawyer.

In his first three years, he crashed four patrol cars.  Stone says he wanted to fire him, but was overruled by Lacombe’s supporters in the town hall. “All of the warning signs that I took to them, they tossed aside,” he said recently.

In a recent interview, former Norristown Mayor Jack Salamone praised Lacombe, saying: “He was energetic. He was pretty good with the public.”  Salamone said he did not recall the effort to fire Lacombe. “At my age, it’s not that easy to remember,” said Salamone, 67.

In 1996, one Norristown woman later said, Lacombe turned sexual predator after he answered a domestic-abuse call. He flirted, commented on her breasts, and finally pulled her hand onto his crotch.

It left her feeling afraid and demeaned. “It was way past official police business,” she said during a court hearing.

For all of Lacombe’s troubles, Stone said, he never heard him described as a sexual abuser until after Feb. 2, 1997 – the night Lacombe went on an on-duty sexual hunt.

As recounted in a lawsuit, it began with a 16-year-old girl being caught riding in a stolen car. She said Lacombe touched her breast during a search.  At 4:30 a.m., prosecutors allege, Lacombe picked up another 16-year-old, whose family he knew, offering a ride home. He pulled over on the way and suggested a “little play.” She refused; Lacombe took her home.

Almost a half-hour later, prosecutors said, he picked up a 42-year-old woman he spotted walking drunkenly by the side of the road. He drove to a dark alley and forced her to give him oral sex.

“I tried to hold my dress and my stockings together. I was screaming, ‘Stop! What are you doing?’ ” the woman later said.  Lacombe was fired in 1997, then arrested on charges of indecent assault, corruption of a minor, and official oppression.

A jury cleared him of wrongdoing in connection with the 16-year-old girl from the family he knew, but convicted him in the attack on the woman.  He was not charged in connection with the other teen, but Norristown paid $122,000 to settle her civil lawsuit.

After serving 71/2 years in prison, Lacombe, now 37, was paroled last year and lives in Philadelphia, according to the state’s Megan’s Law Web site. He did not respond to letters seeking comment.

Stone, who travels the country as a police consultant, says he keeps seeing other departments making the same mistakes, failing to deal with their problem employees. “It’s deliberate indifference,” he said. “Agencies are not focused on that, and the next thing you know, tragedy happens.”

**Luis Verbrea – Who was he?

Prominent Palo Alto Cop Accused of Sexual Battery

Police Officer Faces Sex Charges / Cop accused of fondling women during searches

The Making Of A California State Bar Complaint – Part One

Editor’s comments:

Complaints against police officers can in fact take years to complete.  With “legal roadblocks” thrown up by high powered defense teams making  it appear virtually impossible to seek justice.  One such “legal roadblock” – A Pitchess motion.

Mr. Steven M.  Sherman, of Fergusan, Praet and Sherman the subject of this state bar complaint knows this “legal roadblock” all too well.

Armed to the teeth…with loads of experience…..

What is so very troubling is the fact that with all other professions; doctors, accountants, insurance agents, airline pilots, consumers of products and services and even lawyers have recourse of grievances if something goes wrong.

With police, were talking about an all together different animal.  They have and do receive unprecedented support from unions (POA) , DA’s, judges and they even have an incredible “war chest” for defense funding.

The sad truth is quite often; even our legislators are supportive and protective of their light sentence.  What we find often times when police officers are found innocent or even receiving reduced charges (plea bargaining) with no or very little jail time,  there even held in protective jail cells away from the main prison population if in fact there sent to prison at all.

One PAPD police officer Luis Verbrea received a year in the county jail for raping and fondling while on duty.  Anyone else would have received life in prison.  His charges were even reduced too a misdemeanor by the sentencing judge.

And in some cases they even receive immunity. (California Vehicle Code Section 17004.7).  This is one law on the books which should be repealed and the Law Offices of Fergusan, Praet and in good standing with the state bar for the moment, Mr. Sherman, knows it!

The beauty of a California State Bar complaint process,  is how fast and efficient the whole process is with additional recourse available based on the outcome of the complaint.  You’re entitled to petition “The California State Supreme Court”.  Let’s watch now, as this complaint process begins and how it unfolds though our judicial system and it’s ultimate outcome.

Office of the Chief Trial Counsel/Intake
The State Bar of California
1149 South Hill Street
Los Angeles, California 90015-2299

Attorney Steven Sherman has knowingly and intentionally consented to the tampering of evidence in order to mislead the Court and myself regarding the facts in my civil lawsuit, C09-02655 LHK (PVT), presently being adjudicated in U.S. District Court The Northern District Of California (San Jose Division).

On November 5, 2010 I filed my, “Plaintiff’s Notification To Court Requesting Clarification Of Discovery,” with the Court which reveals Mr. Sherman’s latest violation of State Bar Rules and California and U.S. laws.

On October 28, 2010 I conducted a test on the taser cameras used to record the March 15, 2008 incident which is the basis for my civil lawsuit. Attorney Steven Sherman, the defendants’ counsel of record in my lawsuit, supervised this test. This test produced results that taser cameras merge several individual recordings into one recording. For reasons pointed out in my, “Plaintiff’s Notification To Court Requesting Clarification Of Discovery,” taser cameras do not merge several recordings into one

The only explanation as to why the taser camera used by the Defendants and Steven Sherman on October 28, 2010 merged several separate recordings into one recording is because the Defendants tampered with the operational function of the taser camera to create the falsified results with the intent to mislead me and the Court regarding the true facts of the case and to falsely explain why there is missing video footage in the taser videos.

Steven Sherman supervised the above test and emphatically stated that this is how taser cameras operate knowing full well that taser cameras do not merge several recordings into one recording.

Steven Sherman’s acts constitute a violation of Penal Codes 134 and 141. (a); Business and Professions Code 6106, 6068 (a) and (d) and State Bar Rules: 3-110, 5-200 (A)(B)(C).

As pointed out in, “Plaintiff’s Response To Defendants’ Request For Clarification,” and “Plaintiff’s Notification To Court Requesting Clarification Of Discovery,” filed with the Court, Steven Sherman withheld and suppressed the information and evidence of the Palo Alto Police Department sending Defendant
Burger’s taser camera to Taser International in November 2008 for maintenance and repair. Steven Sherman continues to suppress the information and evidence regarding  what reparative action was conducted on Defendant Burger’s taser camera.

This act constitutes a violation of State Bar Rule 5-220. In addition the above-mentioned act constitutes a violation of State Bar Rule 5-200 (A) and (B). On lines 6 through 8 of Steven Sherman’s Declaration page 10 of document 59 “Defendants’ Opposition To Plaintiff’s Motion To Compel Discovery; Declaration Of Steven A. Sherman,” Mr. Sherman states, “I am familiar with the facts and
circumstances of this lawsuit and if called upon to do so, I could and would competently testify in conformance with the statements made herein.” State Bar Rule 5-200 Trial Conduct (E) states, that “In presenting a matter to a tribunal, a member: Shall not assert personal knowledge of the facts at issue, except when testifying as a witness.” Mr. Sherman violated State Bar Rule 5-200 (E).

As pointed out in my Motion to Compel Discovery, Exhibit 51, the copies of the MAV videos provided to me by the Defendants over the courses of my criminal and civil cases have different “Dates of Last Modification” and amounts of memory contained in the electronic video files.

I have previously sent the State Bar copies of these videos and should be available for review in your office. I clearly demonstrate in Exhibits 100 through 105 of document 62, “Reply Brief In Support Of Plaintiff’s Motion For Order To Compel Defendants And Defendant Burns To Produce And Provide Discovery,” that the “Dates of Modification and amount of memory contained in the electronic video files should not change unless the files, the videos, have been edited is some fashion.

Despite several requests for the original MAV videos over the last year, Defendants had never provided me a copy of Temores’ MAV video containing the date and time that the video was created and saved, March 15, 2008.

On September 3, 2010 in response of my Discovery Request to Defendant Burns requesting Temores’ MAV video containing the Date of Last Modification of March 15, 2008, Steven Sherman had two DVD’s marked as Temores’ MAV video containing the “Date of Last Modification” of March 15, 2008.

The videos sent to me had a “Date of Last Modification” of September 3, 2010. This act of deception was a deliberate attempt on the part of Steven Sherman to suppress evidence and mislead me and the Court as to the true facts of the case. I expose this false presentation of evidence in Exhibit 52 of document 55 my “Motion to Compel” and document 62 my “Reply Brief.”
The above act constitutes a violation of State Bar Rule 3-110 (A); 5-200 (A)(B) and 5-220.

As a result of exposing Mr. Sherman’s attempt at deceiving the Court and me, Mr. Sherman comes up with the excuse that he made the copies of the MAV videos sent to me on September 3, 2010 and not Defendant Burns/the Palo Alto Police which is why
the “Dates of Last Modification’ were not as claimed on the DVDs containing the MAV videos, lines 3 through 6 of document 65 “Defendants’ Brief Regarding Dispute Over Obtaining Original MAV Recordings Containing Digital Watermark.” Mr. Sherman
states, “Plaintiff alleges that he has not received copies of the recordings with a Palo Alto Police Department label stating that Brian Furtado created the disc. This is because the Palo Alto Police Department provided their counsel with the copied disc and defendant’s counsel made a copy from that for plaintiff.”

This statement verifies that Mr. Sherman knew that the “Date of Last Modification” on the copies he sent me on September 3, 2010 did and could not have had a “Date of Last Modification” of March 15, 2008 as claimed by Mr. Sherman.

As pointed out in Exhibit 51 of document 55, “Motion to Compel Discovery” the different “Dates of Last Modification” and amount of memory clearly demonstrate that the Palo Alto Police has edited the MAV recordings. In order to explain why the “Date of Last Modification” and amount of memory changes the Defendants and Mr. Sherman are claiming that they must remove an embedded watermark from the MAV videos because the embedded watermark is proprietary and as such cannot be provided to me or
anyone for that matter, lines 17 through 23 of document 65.

If this were true then Mr. Sherman would not have provided a copy of the MAV videos containing the watermark to a neutral third party, Eduardo Guilarte on October 28, 2010.

More importantly, as I pointed out in document 72 “Supplemental Brief In Support of Plaintiff’s Brief Regarding Discovery Dispute….,” according to the manufacturer of the MAV videos, Kustom Signals, the watermark is embedded into the MAV videos for the intended purpose to transfer to all of the copies of any given video in order to detect who, when and where a copy or copies of any given MAV video are edited and falsified.

This contradicts Mr. Sherman’s statement in lines 16 through 18 of page 3 of document 65 that it is a concern of the Defendants that the MAV recorders can be altered and released to competitors. Mr. Sherman is avoiding the issue, the issue is providing a copy of the MAV recording containing the watermark and is placed there for the specific purpose of determining if a video has been altered.

On October 28, 2010 during an inspection of the MAV system and videos supervised by Steven Sherman, the Palo Alto Police produced a copy of Temores’ and Burger’s MAV videos containing the watermark and a “Date of Last Modification” of March 15, 2008 verifying my assertion that the “Date of Last Modification” does not change when making an exact duplicate of the videos and that the only reason why the “Date of Last Modification” and amount of memory contained in the electronic video files would change would be because the video had been edited and changed in some manner from the original, see “October 28 Inspection.”

In order to avoid providing me a copy of the MAV videos with the watermark, Mr Sherman and the Palo Alto Police took the MAV videos and re-created them in another company’s, “nero’s,” software, during the October 28, 2010 inspection. This contradicts
Kustom Signals literature and website which asserts that copies are made directly from Kustom Signals’ software, Exhibit 120 of document 72 “Supplemental Brief In Support of Plaintiff’s Brief Regarding Discovery Dispute…”

According to Steven Sherman, “Kustom Signals” has the ability to build video cameras and make software that creates videos from those cameras. Additionally, Kustom Signals has the ability to create and attach an electronic watermark to all copies of the videos created by its cameras as well as the software to analyze the watermark in order to detect tampering of any given video or copy of a video. Yet according to Steven Sherman, Kustom Signals does not have the ability to remove its own watermark and must rely on re-creating the video in another company’s, “nero’s, video editing software in order to do so.

Logic would dictate that if Kustom Signals did not intend to provide copies of its videos without the watermark, Kustom Signals would have the ability to remove its own watermark from its own videos. What would Kustom Signals do if there were no other company out there that had the software available to remove Kustom Signals’ watermark? There is no intent on the part of Kustom Signals to remove the watermark from any of its videos or copies made from its software.

On October 28, 2010 Steven Sherman supervised the inspection in which Palo Alto MAV Custodian Brian Furtado produced two MAV videos that did not have the watermark with the sole intent to justify why the previous copies provided to me have different “Dates of Last Modification” and amounts of memory contained on the electronic files.

These copies are once again falsified facts created by Steven Sherman in order to mislead the Court and me, which is a violation of Penal Codes 134, 141 (a); Business and Professions Code 6068 (a)(c)(d), 6106 and State Bar Rules 5-200 (A)(B), and 5-220.

The evidence is overwhelming that the Defendants have destroyed and falsified numerous pieces of evidence and continue to do so under the supervision of attorney Steven Sherman which is a violation Business and Professions Code 6068 (c).

Steven Sherman is undermining the due administrations of justice and violating my 14th Amendment right to due process. I need the State Bar to take immediate and decisive action to prevent Mr. Sherman from causing  irreparable harm to my case.


Joseph (Tony) Ciampi
P.O. Box 1681
Palo Alto, CA 94302

For further information, please visit California State Bar at the following website: