Thursday, February 20, 2014

Life At The CMPD

Today was just another day at the Costa Mesa Police Department.  You know, that department which, according to certain elected whiners and their sycophants here in town, is populated with conspiratorial, greedy out-of-town thugs and bullies.

Today the CMPD issued a press release about an event that caused one officer to be injured while trying to subdue an apparently drunk, out-of-control man who was "sparring" with a female acquaintance in the 200 block of Cabrillo Street.  After he charged one of the officers they both eventually subdued him using a Taser, then had to call an ambulance to transport him to Hoag Hospital, where he also attacked hospital staff.  He's in the Costa Mesa Police Department jail now.  You can read all about it HERE.

Meanwhile, over at the propaganda outlet for the current power elite in town, HERE, the obtuse, pompous, kitty-loving nurse and campaign manager who operates that repository of partisan bilge has decided that it's important for us to compare OUR police department to those in such exotic places as Juneau, Alaska; Dallas, Texas; Vail, Colorado and some place called The Town Of Lady Lake, Florida.  He doesn't seem to think it's important to compare our police department to departments in cities nearby.  Once again, he succeeds in only further demonstrating his lack of understanding of police work and his inability to effectively communicate his message.  What a sad little man he is.

So, the men and women of the Costa Mesa Police Department continue to do their very best to provide safety for the residents and visitors of this city despite being vilified and criticized by many of those self-same sycophants mentioned above.  Because their ranks are so severely diminished - we currently have fewer than 100 officers ready and able to work the streets of Costa Mesa - they continue to put in horrendous overtime hours because two members of the City Council stubbornly refused to let Chief Tom Gazsi begin hiring officers before the issue became critical.

Mayor Jim Righeimer's hatred of the CMPD is not new - it goes back to his first negative encounter with members of the department at the bogus DUI checkpoint dust-up, when he found himself inconvenienced and marched up to officers on the scene, identified himself as "Jim Righeimer, Planning Commission" and told them, "This isn't going to happen again!" and demanded a meeting with them the next day.

Oh, yes, Righeimer spouts from the dais that we have wonderful people on the CMPD and tells us he's not suing "THEM", he and his pal, Mayor Pro Tem Steve Mensinger, are suing the "ASSOCIATION".  Well, just who does he think comprise that association, for goodness sake?  How would you like to go to work every day knowing the top elected leaders in your city are suing you?

From the very beginning he has demanded, based on his alleged extensive knowledge of law enforcement - he has a relative who's a cop in some burg in the Midwest - that the CMPD should be staffed based on HIS assessment of the need, not those proposed by consultants Management Partners nor those of former Interim Chief Steve Staveley - each of which told him that the department should be staffed at AT LEAST 136 officers, with 140 being a minimal number according to Staveley, a law enforcement leader with more than 40 years experience and one of the most highly respected leaders in the state.

The destruction of the Costa Mesa Police Department is only one of the disastrous steps Righeimer and his buddies have taken in the three years since he was elected that have contributed to the decline of Costa Mesa city government.  For example, almost three years ago they forced layoff notices to be illegally delivered to more than 200 employees and young Huy Pham leaped to his death from the roof of City Hall.  That once-proud organization has lost a quarter of its staff and service levels have fallen off as a result.  The only segment of city government that has increased in staff levels is the so-called "Executive Offices" - the 5th floor bunker that seems to be populated by more Chiefs than Indians.  It's become a haven for Righeimer and Mensinger to tell a captive audience their mantra over and over again to the point where some apparently actually believe it.  It's almost as though they've experienced the Stockholm Syndrome.

So, as you read more stories of valor on the part of members of the CMPD or the Costa Mesa Firefighters and watch other members of the city staff keep their collective noses to the grindstone to do the best job possible for the residents of this city despite the toxic workplace created by the current council majority, pause a moment to appreciate their efforts on your behalf.  They are NOT the villains in this municipal drama.

Tell them, Mariah...

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Anonymous Arthur Nern said...

Why does Righeimer hate Costa Mesa so much?

As for Popp, most people get wiser with age. He's clearly headed in the other direction.

We should have political Oscars. "The nominees for Biggest Bootlicker in Town are: Jim Fisler, Dennis Popp, and Jimmy Fitzy. And the winner is...."

2/21/2014 03:57:00 AM  
Blogger Gericault said...

In other news, Newport Beach did a study , priced out how much it would cost to outsource their Unionized Lifeguards, and chose Not to. That's called Ready, Aim, Fire, although Newport chose not to pull the trigger. Complete opposite of our Fire, Ready, Aim gang that can't shoot straight. All they have done is disparage, degrade, and decimate a once fine municipality's work force. Now the consultants keep getting put on permanent payroll, and contracts keep being renewed ,above Hatch's signing ability, with little public oversight . Costing us taxpayers a lot more for less service. If you are building a project in this city , you have a part time hired gun inspector show up to write off your permits. Probably a different one every time, or so I've heard from the complaints.

When I went through a complete tear down, I had the same inspector throughout the process. He told me he was there working for me. I was the client. He was there to make sure that my house would be built perfectly to code and insure compliance from my contractor. My contractor had a professional friendly working relationship with the inspector and the project moved swiftly and finished ahead of schedule.
Much of the success of my remodel was the incredible professionalism and competence of our City Building Dept. Sadly, that Dept. As I knew it, no longer exists.
Right now massive building is occurring throughout the City, with large dense ,three story projects happening throughout.Bad time to be using "hired hands" to be your inspectors. I'm sure the Developers don't have a problem with it. It's easier to buy off a part time inspector you'll never see again than a full time accredited pensioned city employee with his career on the line. If the big one hits my house will probably still be standing, and I'm glad I'm not sleeping on the third floor.

2/21/2014 06:49:00 AM  
Blogger Cindy Lou Who said...

Geoff, thank you for bringing to light this incredibly serious issue. We still have a stellar police department but the numbers they have been whittled down to are very very scary. I suppose Stevie isn't afraid since he seems to be fortified with his own protection and for all we know the little emperor is too, but what about the rest of us who rely on our police and fire departments to protect us, keep us, our property and our community safe. As residents, we pay our property tax counting on the fact it will provide us with the personal and property protections every citizen is entitled to. Who are these two carpetbaggers that have come in to our community and taken that away. November can't arrive soon enough. Wake up fellow citizens and vote them out!

2/21/2014 08:45:00 AM  
Blogger Mike H. said...

I rolled up to the left hand turn lanes of Merrimac and Fairview today. I rolled down my window and said "Thanks for all you do. Things are tough these days and some of us appreciate you." I didn't leave my name or tell them my life story. I didn't have to.

2/21/2014 01:05:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Geez, Mike, I hope you were talking to a member of the CMPD! ;-)

2/21/2014 01:25:00 PM  
Blogger kwahlf said...

Dennis Popp panders to the Righeimer regime and will write or say anything that he thinks will earn him merits with that cabal.
Just look at his outrageous slander of Huy Pham, when he called him a young man with " serious emotional problems". Popp will never live that one down. His blog reflects his complete lack of moral fiber and backbone.
One of the councildude supporters posted a statement on your FB wall, Geoff where he suggested that the REAL reason for the CM Police officer exodus was because "the unions weren't in control" of the city and the city council now.
It looked like a message from Scott Baugh himself in it's absurdity and cluelessness as to the real situation taking place in our CMPD. Perhaps it was.
Scott has demanded a look-the-other-way stance of his messengers as they pass on his insane, grade school level propaganda.
We know why our officers are leaving.
We appreciate the ones who are staying, hanging in there with the most toxic work climate imaginable.
What other city has the mayor and mayor pro tem SUING their own police officers?!? It's sheer, Baugh driven insanity.
Wake UP, Costa Mesans!
You're being punked by the councildudes!

2/24/2014 12:04:00 PM  

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