Fresno Police Chief on Criminals: No Rush to Judgment

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer has never been a big fan of criminals.  But that may all be changing after two of his officers were arrested and one-third of his department’s drug squad came under suspicion for stealing cars.

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Californians’ Priorities In Need Of Correction

In today’s Fresno Bee, Dan Walters comments (2015 update: as with many Bee stories, this link is now gone) on the need to lock down prison spending.  This paragraph contained a rather stunning set of statistics:

“Corrections,” an ironic misnomer, has jumped from less than $5 billion a year to more than $10 billion [a year] in the last decade, more than twice as fast as school spending, the biggest budget item.  It now costs about $45,000 a year to feed, clothe and medicate each of the state’s 170,000-plus inmates, or roughly five times what taxpayers spend on a typical public school student.  And that doesn’t count what it costs to supervise tens of thousands of parolees.

Frankly, this is ludicrous.

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Shooting Holes in the U.S. Constitution

Mary was angry as she waited in line at the grocery store in the rain.  Ahead, she could see the cause of the delay: some stupid older dude with long gray hair, struggling to empty his pockets into the bowl before going through the metal detector.

Where did he find jeans with pockets in the first place?!

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Who is the King?: Sowing the Seeds of Disrespect for the Law

Break a law that you did not know existed.  It doesn’t matter how vaguely worded that law is.  If a police officer wants to arrest you for it and if a Deputy District Attorney decides she wants to prosecute you for it, you will be prosecuted. You will, unfortunately, almost certainly lose: you’ll either realize that you’re going to lose and take an offer, or you’ll be convicted.  Even if somehow, some way you win, you will lose, because you will have paid an attorney, or posted bail, or — in the event you were too poor to hire an attorney and the offense did not require you to post bail — you will have lost time, effort and sleep over the case.

Unless you’re a police officer.

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One Trick Pony: Douglas Tinker, Defender

Douglas Tinker died on November 10, 2008….”

Someone “tweeted” the link to Douglas’s obituary. I tried reading it out loud to my wife and actually made it almost three-quarters of the way through before breaking down.

My wife paid me a great compliment.  And I hope I truly find a way to live up to it.  She said, “He sounds like you.”

Rest in peace, Douglas.  Although I never knew you, I miss you.  I really miss you.

Last Night I Was Arrested For Drunk Driving

Last night you were celebrating the new year with friends.  You didn’t think you’d had too much to drink, but on the way home, you were arrested for driving under the influence.

Now what?

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Building a Nastier World Through Law

Yesterday’s Fresno Bee contained several Letters to the Editor which help to demonstrate why the world is becoming a nastier place.  Now, to be clear, I don’t believe the people who wrote those letters want the world to be a nastier place.  It’s clear from reading them that they combine a lack of understanding with a belief that their position will contribute to — so they impliedly appear to believe — making the world a better place.

Truth is, this lack of understanding helps make the world nastier.  And not just for the targets of the wrath of these Law & Order types.

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