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Thread: Investigation finds East Palo Alto detective's Facebook posts were 'inappropriate'

  1. #1
    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter Venator's Avatar
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    Investigation finds East Palo Alto detective's Facebook posts were 'inappropriate'

    http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-...nclick_check=1

    Police investigation finds East Palo Alto detective's Facebook posts were 'inappropriate'By Jason Green, Bonnie Eslinger and Diana Samuels-- Daily News 07/21/2010

    An East Palo Alto police detective who suggested in a Facebook post that people who openly carry unloaded firearms should be shot engaged in "inappropriate behavior," the police department announced Tuesday.


    The announcement was welcomed by Responsible Citizens of California, which supports the legal "open carry" practice. The group gathered at East Palo Alto City Hall on Tuesday night for a rally intended to pressure police officials to speed up their investigation into Detective Rod Tuason's comments on the social networking site. "What a coincidence," Yih-Chau Chang, a spokesman for Responsible Citizens of California, remarked dryly at the rally after the investigation's results were released. "It's a victory for us."


    Detective Tuason made his controversial Facebook comments in February while responding to a friend's remark about open carry advocates. In one post, he joked that the advocates would get robbed if they tried to carry a gun in plain sight in East Palo Alto. Then he suggested that officers who spot a person carrying a gun openly "should've pulled the AR (assault rifle) out and prone them all out! And if one of them makes a furtive movement ... 2 weeks off!!!" The police department said in a statement Tuesday that an internal investigation was launched after it received numerous phone calls and e-mails about the Facebook comments.


    "After reviewing all of the available evidence, the allegations against an officer of the East Palo Alto Police Department have been 'SUSTAINED,'" the statement said. "A Sustained finding means the investigation revealed sufficient evidence to clearly prove that one or more allegations in the complaint did in fact occur and were in violation of Department policy." It will be up to police Chief Ronald Davis to determine what disciplinary and corrective actions to take, according to the statement, which went on to say the department is prohibited by state law from discussing disciplinary matters or releasing additional information about the probe.


    The statement did not directly identify Tuason as the police employee under investigation. Chang of Responsible Citizens of California said he hopes Tuason's punishment is stiff. "We believe his remarks constitute a serious breach of public trust," Chang said. "He should be relieved of his police duties, and if he is not relieved of his duties, he should not be in the capacity to deal with the public directly."

    "It's our hope that it's not just a slap on the wrist," added Adnan Shahab, executive vice president of Responsible Citizens of California. Shahab and other members of the group left their holsters empty Tuesday because they were at a government center. But the next time he steps foot in East Palo Alto, he'll be packing heat. "Next time I come to East Palo Alto," Shahab vowed, "I will have my openly carried firearm with me."
    An Amazon best seller "MY PARENTS OPEN CARRY" http://www.myparentsopencarry.com/

    *The information contained above is not meant to be legal advice, but is solely intended as a starting point for further research. These are my opinions, if you have further questions it is advisable to seek out an attorney that is well versed in firearm law.

  2. #2
    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    That is all?

    Funny. Written threats are a crime in Virginia. This only violated policy?

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    "It will be up to police Chief Ronald Davis to determine what disciplinary and corrective actions to take, according to the statement, which went on to say the department is prohibited by state law from discussing disciplinary matters or releasing additional information about the probe."

    It would probably be one week of desk duty without water-station-chit-chat priviledge, or one week of paid vacation spent staying at his house with a promise not to touch a doughnut.

    Is there a reason why they dont want us to know how they "discipline" LEOs? Guess...

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    Founder's Club Member ixtow's Avatar
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    "We all agree with you, but you're not allowed to say it." - Entire Palo Alto Police Department.

    Who needs Bin Laden? We have Police Departments full of terrorists.

  5. #5
    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    It's still the US.

    It is amazing the differences you see in different parts of the country. Here in VA negative LEO encounters have all but evaporated in most parts of the state. Mostly we just get nods or winks or waves. The differences in attitudes is extreme.

  6. #6
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    Actually, this officer DID commit a crime under CA law. The CA Courts are just choosing to ignore that part. Any DA with enough brain cells to play tiddly-winks could bring a slam dunk case on this one....


    California Penal Code Section 422

    Any person who willfully threatens to commit a crime which
    will result in death or great bodily injury to another person, with
    the specific intent that the statement, made verbally, in writing, or
    by means of an electronic communication device, is to be taken as a
    threat, even if there is no intent of actually carrying it out,
    which, on its face and under the circumstances in which it is made,
    is so unequivocal, unconditional, immediate, and specific as to
    convey to the person threatened, a gravity of purpose and an
    immediate prospect of execution of the threat, and thereby causes
    that person reasonably to be in sustained fear for his or her own
    safety or for his or her immediate family's safety, shall be punished
    by imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year, or by
    imprisonment in the state prison.

    For the purposes of this section, "immediate family" means any
    spouse, whether by marriage or not, parent, child, any person related
    by consanguinity or affinity within the second degree, or any other
    person who regularly resides in the household, or who, within the
    prior six months, regularly resided in the household.
    "Electronic communication device" includes, but is not limited to,
    telephones, cellular telephones, computers, video recorders, fax
    machines, or pagers. "Electronic communication" has the same meaning
    as the term defined in Subsection 12 of Section 2510 of Title 18 of
    the United States Code.
    Last edited by Dreamer; 07-23-2010 at 11:25 AM.
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

  7. #7
    Regular Member AZkopper's Avatar
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    PC422 does not apply. Saying some one "should be shot" is not a threat under the law. Saying "I will shoot the next OCer" even does not apply, since there is no specific person threatened. Saying, "If I come across Dreamer, and he's OCing, I'm gonna shoot him" is not a legal threat either, since it is conditional.

    What he did is deplorable, but not criminal.

    Being able to cut and paste CA law doesn't mean you understand a law, or how the law is applied.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZkopper View Post
    PC422 does not apply. Saying some one "should be shot" is not a threat under the law. Saying "I will shoot the next OCer" even does not apply, since there is no specific person threatened. Saying, "If I come across Dreamer, and he's OCing, I'm gonna shoot him" is not a legal threat either, since it is conditional.

    What he did is deplorable, but not criminal.

    Being able to cut and paste CA law doesn't mean you understand a law, or how the law is applied.
    So saying someone ("Saying some one "should be shot" is not a threat under the law"), e.g. the President, should be shot isn't a threat?

    "The President should be shot."
    "I will shoot the next President."
    "If I come across the President, and he's OCing, I'm going to shoot him."

    Or do we have different laws for "citizens" and public officials?
    Last edited by merle; 07-26-2010 at 04:28 PM.

  9. #9
    Regular Member Deanimator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merle View Post
    So saying someone ("Saying some one "should be shot" is not a threat under the law"), e.g. the President, should be shot isn't a threat?

    "The President should be shot."
    "I will shoot the next President."
    "If I come across the President, and he's OCing, I'm going to shoot him."

    Or do we have different laws for "citizens" and public officials?
    I suspect that if it had been a citizen talking about shooting cops, some opinions would be very different.

  10. #10
    Regular Member 1245A Defender's Avatar
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    big surprize!

    i would not have posted words about shooting somebody!
    i would hope all posts that quoted those words were removed.
    i would advise the OP to reword or delete his words about shooting somebody.
    nobody knows for sure if those words were picked up by the powers that be.
    its is possible that the poster is in fact now on a watch list!
    EMNofSeattle wrote: Your idea of freedom terrifies me. So you are actually right. I am perfectly happy with what you call tyranny.....

    “If ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.”

    Stand up for your Rights,, They have no authority on their own...

    All power is inherent in the people,
    it is their right and duty to be at all times ARMED!

  11. #11
    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    LoL

    Like we aren't already on a list.

  12. #12
    Regular Member 1245A Defender's Avatar
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    lists!

    Quote Originally Posted by simmonsjoe View Post
    Like we aren't already on a list.
    i dont mind being on a list,
    because i OC, i CC, i study the law, i study our rights, I AM A LAW ABIDING CITIZEN!

    i dont want to be on a list of people that advocate shooting people for no reason.
    i will advocate shooting people during necessary self defense!
    EMNofSeattle wrote: Your idea of freedom terrifies me. So you are actually right. I am perfectly happy with what you call tyranny.....

    “If ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.”

    Stand up for your Rights,, They have no authority on their own...

    All power is inherent in the people,
    it is their right and duty to be at all times ARMED!

  13. #13
    Regular Member AZkopper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deanimator View Post
    I suspect that if it had been a citizen talking about shooting cops, some opinions would be very different.
    Nah, doubt it. I've had veiled threats against me personally, dozens of times. I've had "187 the redneck" spray painted on garage doors in the ghetto where i worked. People talk about shooting cops all the time. Unless you give me a specific threat, then take measures to act on in (or take measures to infer you are acting on it), I'm not really worried what you rant. If you do present a credible threat, well, thats your mistake.

  14. #14
    Regular Member Deanimator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZkopper View Post
    Nah, doubt it. I've had veiled threats against me personally, dozens of times. I've had "187 the redneck" spray painted on garage doors in the ghetto where i worked. People talk about shooting cops all the time. Unless you give me a specific threat, then take measures to act on in (or take measures to infer you are acting on it), I'm not really worried what you rant. If you do present a credible threat, well, thats your mistake.
    Given the VIOLENT reaction in some forums to my carrying a voice recorder in case of police encounters, I suspect that's, to put it charitably, a minority opinion. Given the typical reaction to mere criticism of actual CRIMES committed by police, I don't expect THREATS, even veiled ones, to get a more positive reaction.

  15. #15
    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter Sons of Liberty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZkopper View Post
    PC422 does not apply. Saying some one "should be shot" is not a threat under the law. Saying "I will shoot the next OCer" even does not apply, since there is no specific person threatened. Saying, "If I come across Dreamer, and he's OCing, I'm gonna shoot him" is not a legal threat either, since it is conditional.

    What he did is deplorable, but not criminal.

    Being able to cut and paste CA law doesn't mean you understand a law, or how the law is applied.
    I'm gonna call you on this one. Please cite law or case law establishing the specificity of the person being threatened.

    Added at time of edit:

    So here's what the prosecution must prove based on a complaint by one or more persons, who open carry in East Palo Alto:

    The defendant is charged [in Count ______] with having made a criminal threat.

    To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must prove that:
    1. The defendant willfully threatened to unlawfully kill or unlawfully cause great bodily injury to Mr. John Brown and Mr. Edward James, residents of East Palo Alto and "open carriers";
    2. The defendant made the threat to Mr. John Brown and Mr. Edward James by electronic communication device;
    3. The defendant intended that his statement be understood as a threat [and intended that it be communicated to Mr. John Brown and Mr. Edward James, "open carriers"];
    4. The threat was so clear, immediate, unconditional, and specific that it communicated to Mr. John Brown and Mr. Edward James a serious intention and the immediate prospect that the threat would be carried out;
    5. The threat actually caused Mr. John Brown and Mr. Edward James to be in sustained fear for their own safety;
    AND
    6. Mr. John Brown's and Mr. Edward James' fear was reasonable under the circumstances.
    Last edited by Sons of Liberty; 07-27-2010 at 11:37 PM.

  16. #16
    Regular Member AZkopper's Avatar
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    Show me where in his facebook post he threatened Mr. John Brown and Mr. Edward James directly by name or implied name. The threat must be against a specific person or location, general. Secondly, it is not a threat against that person if it was not directed to them. The innappropriate post was made on a friends facebook page. Lastly, again, the threat must unequivocal, immediate and unconditional. Show me where it was unequiviocal, not conditional on OCers 'should be proned out.....and [implied shooting when] moving after being proned out'.

    Not naming an individual or location, not threatening them directly, not claiming HE would do anything-rather saying 'they should be...' all make it not a legal threat.

    I worked southern California for over 11 years. I know what criteria the District Attorney's offices use in LA and OC. It appears the DA's in northern CA use the same criteria (the law).

    " unequivocal, unconditional, immediate, and specific as to convey to the person threatened, a gravity of purpose and an immediate prospect of execution of the threat" is the opperative part of 422PC.

    Yes it is reprehensible. No it is not illegal under 422PC.

    This is not about LEO getting special treatment either. I've dealt with dozens and dozens of 'threats' on non-law enforcement people....neighbor issues, ex-boyfriend/girlfriend issues, employer/employee issues, etc. The criteria is always the same.
    Last edited by AZkopper; 07-28-2010 at 02:23 PM.

  17. #17
    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter Sons of Liberty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZkopper View Post
    Show me where in his facebook post he threatened Mr. John Brown and Mr. Edward James directly by name or implied name. The threat must be against a specific person or location, general. Secondly, it is not a threat against that person if it was not directed to them. The innappropriate post was made on a friends facebook page. Lastly, again, the threat must unequivocal, immediate and unconditional. Show me where it was unequiviocal, not conditional on OCers 'should be proned out.....and [implied shooting when] moving after being proned out'.

    Not naming an individual or location, not threatening them directly, not claiming HE would do anything-rather saying 'they should be...' all make it not a legal threat.

    I worked southern California for over 11 years. I know what criteria the District Attorney's offices use in LA and OC. It appears the DA's in northern CA use the same criteria (the law).

    " unequivocal, unconditional, immediate, and specific as to convey to the person threatened, a gravity of purpose and an immediate prospect of execution of the threat" is the opperative part of 422PC.

    Yes it is reprehensible. No it is not illegal under 422PC.

    This is not about LEO getting special treatment either. I've dealt with dozens and dozens of 'threats' on non-law enforcement people....neighbor issues, ex-boyfriend/girlfriend issues, employer/employee issues, etc. The criteria is always the same.
    Seems to me that there are cases where the specific threat does not require that a person be specifically named. An example would be where a student threatens to bring a gun to school and do some serious shooting. The general location in this case is inherent in the city that Detective Tuason works. He will come across an OCer and one should fear such a threat, knowing how easy it would be to get away with. "I saw him make a move for his gun."

    So let's just say the roles were reversed...are you saying that there are no police departments that wouldn't arrest the OC'er making the threat, confiscate his weapon, throw him/her in jail overnight, required to post bail, required to retain an attorney, and come across an overzealous city attorney wanting to prosecute a case like this, argue it in front of a jury to see if he could get a conviction? (Look at Theseus' case.) Or maybe just drop the charges just prior to going to court, just to mess with your life? Maybe cause you problems in return of your property, because he hasn't yet decided to pursue the case?

    Shouldn't that same measure of justice be equally applied to a sworn officer who expresses performing an action that rides so conflicting with his duties and the public trust? What makes this threat so egregious is that this officer holds a position that demands conduct and integrity that are above scrutiny. It is a necessary ingredient in maintaining the public confidence in a city free of tyranny. How can citizens trust their government when such things go on?

    What if a sworn officer made such a comment based on race? There was a time in the bay area where race-based police shootings occurred.

    Again the legality of such comments should be borne out in a court of law; especially for a police officer.

  18. #18
    Regular Member AZkopper's Avatar
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    So, go ahead and draft a bill and give it to your assemblyman (assemblywoman). I'll get it started for you:

    "a peace officer who expresses any opinion or statement that rides so conflicting with his duties and the public trust, whether in the performance of his duties or not, whether in a private or public setting, shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year, or by imprisonment in the state prison."

    Then, lets have another law:

    "Any person who makes any statement that any other person finds offensive or disturbing, shall be imprisoned in the county jail not to exceed one year, or by imprisonment in the state prison."

    Then we can move on to:

    "Any person who speaks out against the government, its interests, or its policies shall be executed."

    Tell me where you want to stop.

  19. #19
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deanimator View Post
    I suspect that if it had been a citizen talking about shooting cops, some opinions would be very different.
    What the moderator of Cop talk didn't lock his thread? LOL.

  20. #20
    Anti-Saldana Freedom Fighter Sons of Liberty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZkopper View Post
    So, go ahead and draft a bill and give it to your assemblyman (assemblywoman). I'll get it started for you:
    We don't need to draft anymore laws. We just need to enforce the ones we have, fairly. I'm assuming you're from Arizona. You should know what it means to enforce the laws fairly, whether they are citizens, police officers, public officials or foreigners.

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