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Date: Fri, 20 Sep 2002 15:43:55 -0700 (MST)
From: thekoba  (K J WALSH)
Subject: specifics
To: joel.olson@asu.edu
Cc: snail , copwatch602@hotmail.com

>Thanks for your detailed report. I'm familiar with the theory of "community
>policing" and the strategy of focusing on minor infractions or "quality of
>life" issues, but it's always more interesting to hear it from the cops'
>mouths. Also, I didn't know that the Phoenix PD was practicing the "quality
>of life" strategy. We'll have consider it more in our patrolling practice.

Dear Joel,

The specific example that cop gave (sorry I don't remember his name or even his rank) was the Coronado neighbourhood. Supposedly residents there had been complaining during neighbourhood meetings about loud music, filth, and large numbers of people entering and leaving via the alleys at night. The police suspected it was a drug house but didn't have enough evidence to obtain a warrant. They found out that the house had an absentee owner, the mother of the man who was living there. She was in Scottsdale and was at first skeptical and uncooperative. The cops shot some video footage of the filthy condition of the property and showed it to her. She then consented to a search. The cops broke into the house with weapons drawn (they showed this to us on video), claimed to have a search warrant but never presented it and arrested the man. His mother evicted him and sold the house. The house was in a filthy state, with many strange items (including a collection of bottles of urine), but the man was only held in jail for a few hours. They had to release him. Apparently, by this cop-presenter's own admission, they didn't find any drugs or evidence of serious crimes there, only minor violations of health and sanitation regulations. Nonetheless the cops declared victory.

This was the only example he presented in detail. If that's the best they've done in "community based policing", I'm not impressed with the result, but I am impressed by the danger it poses to the civil rights of innocent people who live unconventionally.

No other neighbourhood was mentioned specifically, but the officer said that community based policing is the policy of the whole city. There was no question-and-answer time at the end of this presentation.

Next thursday night we go back to headquarters at 7th Avenue and Washington for a presentation on the general investigations bureau. We are also being scheduled for a ride-along with a cop. Mine is tentatively scheduled for saturday the 28th, day shift. I'll keep you posted.

Comradely,

Kevin


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