LAPD Command Staff Directive = F-You Beachgoers. Be A Victim Because We Won’t Respond To The Sand.

I live in Los Angeles in the area patrolled by LAPD Pacific Division known as Venice Beach.

Here are a few things I have learned from living here…

Venice is supposedly the 2nd largest tourist attraction in southern California after Disneyland. One of the two has a budget. I’ll let you guess.

Of the entire Pacific Division area which includes Mar Vista, Del Rey, Playa del Rey, Palms, Marina Del Rey, Westchester…. jam all those neighborhoods together and guess where the majority of the crime happens? VENICE BEACH. So, of the whole division, Venice is the focal point that drives the majority of the crime stats for the entire area. Great. We’ll come back to that.

Like other divisions of the LAPD, our police officers drive cruisers. Unlike other divisions, some of ours are specially designed to drive on the sand. Quick reminder: “the sand” includes that special area known as “the beach” where all that crime happens.

Here’s another Fun Fact: People in cars are known to get into car accidents. Police sometimes get into car accidents. Luckily, when the police get into an accident in a City car, the LAPD doesn’t put an end to them driving cars anymore. BUT, in Venice last year officers ran over a person laying in the sand. (She wasn’t hurt badly at all, and she refused medical treatment after an initial assessment.) But after that event a member of the command staff immediately stopped our officers from driving on the sand “until they evaluated and assessed the situation and determined if more training was needed”.

Now, that wasn’t the first time LAPD has run over someone in the sand. I’m not going to get into the details, but based on perspective, line of sight, and a material that gives the visual illusion of looking the same despite vast irregularities in the terrain…. it is an easy thing to do. It is just a byproduct of sand being sand which can hide a person laying down completely from just a few feet away. That characteristic doesn’t just apply to LAPD officers…it applies to everyone.

Also, LAPD is not the only city or county agency that drives on the sand. Beaches & Harbors, Lifeguards, Sanitation, Rec & Parks, lots of agencies drive on the sand. Guess what, every agency has run over someone laying in the sand. Sometimes its not so bad, sometimes its REALLY BAD. It has happened in the past. It will happen in the future. Similarly, people who drive cars …. anywhere … tend to get into accidents too. So its safe to say that if you are driving a car, and are a police officer or not… accidents are going to happen. Not because of a lack of training or gross negligence or whatever… it’s just people + cars = accidents. Its true. Look it up.

But lets get back to the beach.

When word got out last fall that LAPD wasn’t going to drive on the sand… guess where all the robbers, burglars, thieves and scoundrels went after committing a crime? Yep. The sand. At first LAPD would call lifeguards to drive them out to meet a victim or go after a suspect… but then the FD was like F that – why should we be put in harms way when that isn’t our job, its the po-lice job. Then for every crime including ADW, people brandishing guns where the perps ran to the sand… LAPD would call an airship… which would only respond if available and if able.  That also takes time…. the whole thing was a mess… so the cops just gave up on the whole thing, and only went on the sand to walk someone that was easy to put in custody back up to the beach… which is still pretty time consuming. Supposedly if there was some “crazy circumstance” that required officers to drive on the sand… a supervisor could run it up the flagpole for approval. But nobody is going to request that because (A) it is stupid (B) colossal waste of time (C) it isn’t remotely practical and (D) why ask to do something that if it happens for any reason to go sideways … your ass is going to get tagged with the blame. So whats easier? Just do nothing. Check.

Heres another thing about “the sand”. Ever been down to the beach during the summer? People aren’t dispersed in equi-distant squares each occupying a specified space… they are jam packed all over the sand. Lots of em. People. You know… the ones that both commit and are victims of that stuff called crime that happens a lot in that super popular area called Venice Beach.

Well, two weeks ago I heard now that it is summer and a decision needs to be made about driving on the sand… that the same command staff genius waved his mighty badge and hath set forth that the decision is that LAPD will never drive on the sand again.

Yep. That’s right people. “The Sand” … that giant area of City of Los Angeles property that encompasses 4 RD areas will no longer be patrolled by, or accessed by the Los Angeles Police Department by a vehicle. So, if you are a victim of a crime on the sand, which happens a hell of a lot more often that a person getting run over by any agency vehicle on the sand… I guess you can just go suck it because LAPD isn’t going to respond.

I can’t imagine a scenario where LAPD would tell the officers of a Division “Hey, RD 1402…. don’t drive there, patrol there or respond to calls for service there. Just… I dunno… figure something else out. ” I’m pretty sure that would never fly, but that is exactly what has just happened in Venice Beach.

This whole area… which is only accessible in any reasonable fashion by first responders or in an urgent situation via specialized vehicle, which LAPD has and has used like all the other agencies for decades… eh…. I guess people who are victims of crime can… go to the station and make a report? Or maybe call the front desk and wait for it to ring and ring and ring before someone picks up the receiver and hangs up. Is that effective police tactics? Is that what you would expect to be told as a victim? Well what do you think is going to happen when every cracked out bike stealing person with bad intentions learns if they haven’t already that LAPD won’t patrol on the sand at all.. so go ahead and rob somebody at knifepoint there because the cops won’t show up and you’ll probably get away with it. A lot.

Here’s something else you learn about the beach when you live here for a while. One of the most common crimes is drinking in public on the sand. TONS of people do it. You probably have. LAPD officers cruise the jam packed sand, and stop in a nice visible spot of thousands of people and take time dumping out the booze of people drinking on the sand for all to see, and write them a ticket. You know what that does? It actually stops or slows down a lot of other people doing the same thing. And what does that do?

After a long hot day in the sun… a lot of people are a lot less drunk when they leave the beach. They get into less fights. There is less drunk driving….less bad decision making and the amount of crime that doesn’t happen as a byproduct of everyone getting wasted on the sand all day is actually really significant.

BUT NOT ANYMORE!

So neighbors who walk along the sand in the morning, joggers that zip down to the beach for a run along the ocean…every other sucker who decides to pay a visit to the 2nd largest tourist attraction next to Disneyland…. enjoy you visit to Venice Beach this year…. see you on the crime stat sheet.

Took the area of the sand that LAPD used to patrol by vehicle and overlaid the exact area over other areas of the division. Would it be acceptable to have LAPD not patrol those areas at all?

Chick who was run over by LAPD and refused medical attention after being evaluated by FD at scene.

Fatal Shooting – Venice & Lucielle

Last night just after 8:30 p.m. A help call came out by LAPD for shots fired with a victim down at the 800 block of Venice Bl. Officers engaged two men having an arguement – initiated contact and a shooting occurred wounding the suspect who was transported to the hospital. Several residents reported the gunfire.

Folks that live nearby reported via twitter that the man was a former Marine, and possibly was armed with a rifle. Per news there may have been a roommate dispute with one shooting the other, who was transported to the hospital and succumbed to his injuries. Getting more details ….. 

and UPDATE – apparently it was an OIS – roommate dispute. Officers arrived at scene during altercation and shooting occurred- victim died and was apparently armed when officers made contact. 

Police Video: Your Input Is Requested, And Needed Before May 7th

When I heard that public opinion was being sought regarding police video and body cameras, I was extremely interested… but unfortunately the myriad of news stories and massive press coverage didn’t point to the online survey. #FAIL !

CLICK HERE TO TAKE THE POLICE VIDEO SURVEY!

You can also upload independent comments here.

Thanks to our local Venice Beach Senior Lead Officer Roberts, we were linked up with the folks from NYU and UCLA Law that organized the survey and who are doing an extensive research study on the issue. They also developed this video which addresses many of the concerns and issues regarding police incident video.

Community Input on the LAPD’s Video Policy

What should happen if a police officer’s body-worn camera records an officer-involved shooting or other serious use of force incident? Should the video be made public? And if so, when?

The Los Angeles Police Commission is developing a new policy on the release of video footage after such incidents.

The Los Angeles Police Commission Wants Your Input

The Los Angeles Police Commission wants to make sure that its new policy is responsive to community concerns. It has asked the Policing Project at New York University School of Law to gather public input on what the policy should be. The Policing Project will work with professors and students at UCLA School of Law and UC Irvine School of Law to get input from the community and report back to the Commission.

Learn More About the Pros and Cons of Releasing Video

In deciding whether and when to release video after an officer-involved shooting, there are many factors to consider. To learn more, watch the video below, or read a brief fact sheet about some of the tradeoffs involved.

There are also several community forums scheduled on the topic before the survey response period closes on May 7th. They are:

Thursday, April 20, 2017, 6:30PM

ONE Generation Senior Enrichment Center, 18255 Victory Blvd., Los Angeles (map)

Saturday, April 22, 2017, 2:00 PM:

Pico House, 424 N. Main St., Los Angeles (map)

Wednesday, May 3, 2017, 6:30 PM:

Location TBA, South Bureau

Hello. Be A Genius, Register Your Bike With BikeIndex.org

Yes, I am talking to you. The person who lives at the beach and owns a bike. That awkward thing that takes up space in your house or apartment so you don’t keep it inside… instead you lock it up away from your other typically less expensive prized possessions…. and it gets stolen. Maybe you are flush with cash and it is just a disposable item, replaceable for a few hundred bucks… part of the cost of living in Venice (and all of LA). Or maybe, you just didn’t know and your very personalized, stylish pedal machine that had an awesome saddle, custom bell, and cool wooden basket which you rode through stop sign after stop sign while breezing around the neighborhood is not replaceable, it was part of your personality. Or maybe it was your only way to get to work, or school… and losing it hurts. Well, regardless – bike theft is prolific and thieves rely on you not registering it, or making a police report when it gets stolen. So do yourself a favor. Act ahead for once… and register your bike at bikeindex.org . It is a non-profit, and apparently these guys figured out a simple and successful way to make a record of your pushy in the event it goes missing…. 

Makes sense, right? Click here —> bikeindex.org to execute … or disregard to keep self-sabotaging your life. 

$10 To Be Amazing & Feel Good Inside

Keychain for Fundraising. Only $10 & Free Shipping. Proceeds helps LA Police Officers Sponsor families in need. Badge Of Heart. Goes to help OUR NEIGHBORS in need. As they spray paint on the side of the pier…. locals only. Help em out! 

Damaged By A Pothole? (Not Weed) Here’s Where To File A $ Claim

Ahhhhh rain. We need it so badly, but it comes with a price. No good deed goes unpunished as they say… so when the rains come and bubble up all the sun-parched asphalt… Los Angeles roads burp up an insane amount of new potholes. So what happens if your car is damaged by a pothole after you spent all that money lowering it, and putting stupid low profile but high performance tires on your dumb Civic, and the coffee can exhaust? Well, if it happened in the City of Los Angeles… here is the link to the online form to (attempt) to make a claim: https://claims.lacity.org/Home/BasicClaim and if it is on the freeway, CalTrans may, or may not have your back with their form here: http://www.dot.ca.gov/damageclaims.html .

Good luck with that.

Fire On Flower Sends Elderly Neighbor To Hospital

Here is the full breakdown from @lafd and a video from @_joeanna https://twitter.com/_joeanna/status/824539400973398016

Update Structure Fire 01/26/2017

Update Structure Fire; 1:10AM; 658 E Flower Av; Patient is elder F resident with severe smoke inhalation but NO burn injury; In serious condition at an area hospital, the woman told Paramedics she was awakened by a functional smoke alarm in her residence, which gave her the critical seconds necessary to evacuate prior to the Fire Department’s arrival; Fire cause under active investigation; Loss still being tabulated; NFD; – Brian Humphrey

KNOCKDOWN Structure Fire 01/26/2017

KNOCKDOWN Structure Fire; 12:44AM; 658 E Flower Av; 36 FF’s took 25 min; Confined to excessive personal storage within rear of 868 square-foot 1 story home built 1923; 1 adult F with (unk severity) burn injury taken to hospital by LAFD Paramedics in undetermined condition; Loss/Cause TBD; NFD; Dispatched LAFD Units: E263 E63 T63 RA63 E62 RA59 E269 T69 BC4 E59 E237 T37; – Brian Humphrey

Structure Fire 01/26/2017

Structure Fire; 12:19AM; 658 E Flower Av; https://goo.gl/maps/oyQSkCzdCBr; Venice; PRELIM: 1 story home with fire to the rear; Excessive storage conditions; 1 civilian patient being assessed for unspecified injury; NFD; FS 63; Batt 4; West Bureau; Council District 11; CH: 9; 12; – Brian Humphrey

Westchester! Connect This Sunday At The Community Expo w BadgeOfHeart.org

This Sunday join others in the Westchester community for a neighborhood expo showcasing opportunities for all ages! Services, sports, education, entertainment, volunteer opportunities and more! 1 Day & 1 Place to discover how to help yourself and your community!

BadgeOfHeart.org will have a booth, where you can meet a law enforcement initiative developed by one of your own local officers that is making a tremendous difference in our community. That might sound generic and boring, but one officer, one of YOUR officers started a non-profit for YOUR community… and if you know of a neighbor or family in need… you can visit BadgeOfHeart.org , tell their story and take steps towards rallying support that could make a huge difference in the life of a person or family in need. Read some of the stories. An amazing testament to what giving can do.

Sunday January 29th 1p.m. – 6 p.m.

Covenant Presbyterian Church

6323 West 80th St in Westchester

This is a free event, and even if you stop by for 15 minutes I guarantee you, you will learn something new and at worst, be smiled at. Can’t make that guarantee for anywhere else in the hood that day. Save an alert and stop by!

 

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