Over the last few years as police misconduct issues have dominated the news, I’ve watched a lot of public hearings addressing everything from gang policing to racial profiling to police body cameras.
It wasn’t until a hearing this week, though, that I heard anyone talk about werewolves.
That wasn’t the only thing that made 16-year-old Leah Blake’s testimony before the California Racial and Identity Profiling Advisory Board hearing in San Diego on Wednesday stand out.
Blake was perhaps the youngest in a long line of speakers who went before the board to offer feedback on how to address police racial profiling and the best ways to implement AB 953, a law passed in 2015 by San Diego Assemblywoman Shirley Weber that requires law enforcement officers across the state to collect data on who they stop. Yet she was also the most poised and comfortable.
So why werewolves? Blake said in the hearing she grew up reading werewolf stories in which rogue wolves would peel off on their own because they didn’t agree to the pack’s laws and customs. She uses that idea to take on the idea of the “rogue cop” – a standard explanation that police departments give when misconduct or questionable behavior by an officer makes the news. Another term for it that’s often used is the “bad apple” cop.
Rogue werewolves might be fun to read about. But “I don’t believe in rogue cops,” Blake said.
We Stand Up for You. Will You Stand Up for Us?
To say that I am amazed that you, VOSD, consider this evidently poised young woman's presentation as the highlight of the RIPA hearings would be lying.
This betting man would wager that the most impressive presentation was that of the "trainer" from POST (Police Officer Standards and Training)
the State sponsored agency. And, by my comment, I do not mean the Emmy-winning insult of the fictitious vehicle stop. No, I mean the response to the question on de-escalation training. All should be frightened by that fool, who ought to be put out to pasture somewhere; anywhere.
A close second are the remarks of the Special Assistant Attorney General Kelly Evans. Her remarks indeed were special, and I hope that they were not true. Distilled to its essentials, the lady asserted that AG Becerra, decided to, and succeeded in delaying the issuance of final requlations before he became AG. How is that possible? Was I the only person who noticed the impossibility of the assertion. Oscar Bobrow did notice, that the foregoing action was taken without advising the RIPA Board.
Finally; most alert people, reporters especially, would have noticed the multiple alarmed and alarming remarks related to Shelly Zimmerman's decision not to produce additional bias reports. They would have found Zimmerman's position irreconcilable with the express wish and instruction of the City Council. Annual updates of the biased-policing reports are mandated, and the year 2016 ended almost seven months ago.