Category Archives: Law

Folks in the Hollywood Hills demand action to control tourist traffic

hollywoodsign
Hollywood sign from Griffith Park Observatory

It first appeared here over a year ago in a blogging.LA post by Tamara, now the L.A times has jumped on the story too.  Today’s times reports that residents of Hollywoodland and other tracts with great views of the Hollywood sign are plagued with tourists blocking traffic, stopping in the middle of the road for the “perfect shot” of this L.A. icon.

I’ve suggested in the past folks visit Griffith Park for a view of the hills and the sign.  Its not up close and personal but it gets the point across without disrupting the lives of those that live close to it.  It certainly doesn’t put folks at risk with life and limb from that vantage point.

Tourists aren’t going to go away.  And that I suppose is a mixed bag. The L.A. Times article has one resident suggesting the city post armed check points to keep tourists out of the neighborhoods.  Thats just a tad excessive.  What would you suggest to help the problem?  Where would you suggest they go so as not to interrupt traffic or cause damage to peoples property for that great shot?

 

Today is Thank an Officer Day

Thank a cop day
Thank a cop day poster, click to embiggen

Who knew they had a special day too…well it is today.  Be nice and thank one, anyone you see.

I’ve had the pleasure of knowing a lot of good cops over the years, too many to enumerate, certainly more good than weiners.  I hate to admit it, but with most of the tickets I got I deserved, certainly the 2 I didn’t deserve I fought and won.

Hat tip to my friend Tom Le Veque a sergeant at Arcadia PD for sharing the info on the day.  Truthfully he exemplifies what a good cop is and what they do for the community.  Tom aside from all his other duties runs APD’s social media, twitter, facebook and nixle that engages and informs the community on what is going on in the community.

Other good cops I’ve known over the years include Michael Solarez whom I knew through his work with MPD.  Pasadena PD’s Christopher Kirby is another. LAPD’s Ed Brentlinger from the North Hollywood division from when I was in Valley Village is another great one I had the pleasure of knowing and working with. All these men were known by the community they served and enjoyed what they did.

So…don’t screw up today, instead hand out a starbucks card to  your local officer on the beat to thank them for their largely thankless job.

Prop D passes and now some dispensaries face criminal complaints

KNBC has the full story HERE.  I understand the voters passed a law limiting the number of dispensaries and where they can go.  What I don’t understand is why the dispensaries that are outside those parameters don’t find new locations and operate legally.  Can anyone explain it?

The best quote in the story is from the attorney representing the dispensaries that got their notices to appear in court because they are outside the parameters.  “You can’t just shut down a business because you don’t like it,” he said.

Well, yes, legally there are ways you can do just that.  Pasadena, Monrovia and a host of cities have ordinances that ban outright the dispensaries, limit smokes shops and the old “head shop”.  Challenges have failed and Prop D is likely no different. Actually Prop D didn’t outright ban, they left a window open for some shops to operate legally with some guidelines.  Not sure what the deal is here as they’ve had months to find a new space and relocate.   Continue reading Prop D passes and now some dispensaries face criminal complaints

Utility Bill Scams Continue to Target So Cal Edison Customers

I just got this alert from the LA County Sheriff via nixle.  Apparently there’s more than a sucker born every moment out here in the SGV and other areas service by SoCalEddy.

The short version of the scam is that a caller calls someone, tells them their power will be shut off if they don’t immediately pay their bill via a prepaid debit card.  Yes, a prepaid debit card that the scammer sends the victim out to get,  then gives them the info needed to use it.  Goes without saying you hangup and report the number used to contact you to the police with the details of what they wanted you to do.  Common sense says that you would go to your nearest SCE office or their web site to make an immediate payment, but common sense flew out the window long before they picked up the phone.  Sad.

The full press release after the jump.  Continue reading Utility Bill Scams Continue to Target So Cal Edison Customers

YO…sweetheart you ain’t handicapped

And you park funny too!

Sweet parking job...no handicap plate or hang tag...click to embiggen for plate number

Here I am sitting in the rather fast moving drive through line with a few cars behind me. Behind me is this Twenty-something with a kidlet. Suddenly she dives over to the side and goes into a Handicapped Parking Space…clearly signed and delineated in blue paint. She hops out, grabs a kid from the back seat who SHOULD HAVE BEEN IN A CAR SEAT and runs into the store. Seriously, having had a parent that was handicapped prior to his passing I know those spots are precious to those who need them. I wish a pox upon that little chirpy for taking the spot from one who could have used it.

L.A. County DUI arrests up 43% over last year’s July 4th

There must be a lot of folks sitting with their heads on their hands going “man did I eff up this time”.  DUI arrests this year are 490 compared to 343 a year ago for the same period.  Thats a lot of sorry folks looking at huge legal bills, fines and some jail time.  What happened?

This from nixle:

“Community: 490+ DUI Arrests So Far in #LACounty: Independence Day Weekend AVOID #DUI Campaign (Multi-Agency Update 3)

Avoid the 100 (policing agencies) Los Angeles County DUI Campaign

The Independence Day Weekend Anti DUI crackdown is reporting DUI arrests from local routine traffic enforcement and special Avoid the 100 DUI deployments in Los Angeles County.

From 12:01 AM Thursday July 4, 2013 through midnight Saturday 6, 2013 officers representing 100 county law enforcement agencies have arrested

490 individuals for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. (**NOTE: These numbers are only provisional with some agencies yet to report**). Last year during the same time period there were a total of 343 arrests for DUI.

Law enforcement officials are continuing DUI efforts throughout the county and region. DUI arrest data collection will continue through midnight tonight. Additionally, CHP throughout the state have all available officers patrolling freeways and county roads throughout the weekend for their Maximum Enforcement Period.” 

Continue reading L.A. County DUI arrests up 43% over last year’s July 4th

Seriously 286+ Dui’s this weekend and Saturday hasn’t even started

OK  I leave town for a few days and I came back to this nixle message from the L.A. County Sheriff.  Has the city lost its collective mind?  DUI arrests are up 23% over last year and not all agencies in the county have been counted.  Have we forgotten about the designated driver or cab option?  Sheesh.

This from LASD Nixle:

The Independence Day Weekend (Multi-Agency) Anti DUI crackdown is reporting a significant number of DUI arrests from local routine traffic enforcement and special Avoid the 100 DUI deployments in Los Angeles County.

From 12:01 AM Thursday July 4, 2013 through midnight Friday, July 5, 2013, officers representing 100 county law enforcement agencies have arrested 286 individuals for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Last year, 233 individuals were arrested during same the 48 hours. (**NOTE: These numbers are only provisional with some agencies yet to report**).

DUI arrest data collection will continue through midnight Sunday July 7, 2013. Law enforcement officials are continuing DUI efforts throughout the county and region. Additionally, CHP throughout the state have all available officers patrolling freeways and county roads throughout the weekend for their Maximum Enforcement Period (MEP). Police, Sheriff and the CHP encourage all motorists to help make your community safer: Report Drunk Drivers – Call 911.

Avoid programs, named for the number of law enforcement agencies in each county, will also concentrate crackdowns during the 18-Day August/Labor Day period. In recognition that the summer season is among the deadliest time of the year, law enforcement agencies throughout the county will be making every effort to arrest drunk drivers before another life is lost. Continue reading Seriously 286+ Dui’s this weekend and Saturday hasn’t even started

Have you joined Nixle for the latest crime and civic information?

Sample text alert...click to embiggen

If you haven’t heard about Nixle let me give you the details.  Its a service many local police and fire agencies use that you as a citizen can get alerts on what is going on in your community.  I signed up for a few in my area so I know when streets are closed due to some sort of fire or police emergency.  They always include a link to get more details if you need them.

Today its a heat emergency and it will exist through the weekend.  Two of the agencies I follow included links to cooling centers in the area.

In recent weeks I’ve learned of street closures because of fires, accidents or other police activity.  Some directly affected me and I was able to use the info to avoid the problems.

Sign up is easy.  You get to pick as many agencies as you want to get alerts from.  You can have sent to you via email or text message.  The information you get is well worth the few clicks it takes to get signed up

Metro cans more carpool lanes for Lexus Lanes – SGV hit this time around

lexus lane transponder
lexus lane transponder needed even for carpoolers

Yup, as I mentioned in a post a while back, the HOV to HOT lane conversion is coming to me in the San Gabriel Valley.  The 10 from Alameda/Union Station to the 605 will be the affected area.  The change becomes effective 2-23-2013 at 12:01AM.

The transponders aren’t cheap, and then again using the lanes isn’t cheap if you are not in a carpool either.  Yes, you are required to have a transponder in your car if you use the lane.  There is no $3.00 service fee charged if you use it at least 3 times a month.

Metro is so “convinced” you will love it they are running a contest that ends today to get you to sign up.  Enter HERE.

AAA offers discounts on the transponders if you purchase it through them. This deal is open only to AAA members. The offer is as follows: Receive 20% off the initial pre-paid toll deposit of $40. AAA members will pay $32 for $40 worth of toll credits. Maximum discount is $8 per new account set-up.

My question is why hasn’t the 10 from DTLA to SaMo or the 405 from say the 101 to the 10 not been hit with the Lexus Lanes as well?  Certainly they are as congested as bad or worse than the freeways chosen so far.

Please tell the City not to ban medical marijuana collectives!

UPDATE:

We just received word that the vote, and all action at City Hall, has been POSTPONED until further notice.

Please continue to Support Unionized Medical Cannabis Workers, and your right to Safe Access, in LA by writing a letter to your council person at www.ufcw770.org/cannabis.

Sorry for any inconvenience. Here’s my original post:

The city is set to vote to ban collectives this Friday.

Yes, you read that right.

Currently there are 8 votes in favor of banning ALL L.A. medical marijuana collectives. In order to overturn that, we need to make sure Busciano, LaBonge, or Krekorian lean in our favor. If all three of them vote to ban… It’s referendum time.

Unless we turn just ONE VOTE by Friday, all LA collectives will be banned.

To be clear, there could very well be 8 votes to ban right now because 3 of those votes have been holding their cards close to their chest.

If you can (and you care) please show up this Friday, June 22, 2012 at 9am, at LA City Hall East () for a press conference with Union Members, Patients, and Community Allies, to preserve safe access. This is important and very real; your voice can help keep collectives open to the law-abiding citizens who use them.

Please call and write to your councilmember in the meantime: www.ufcw770.org/cannabis

This video needs to go viral and L.A. County Sheriff officer involved needs to be fired

Photographer “discarted” whom I have at least heard of, had a really unfortunate run in with an L.A County Sheriff on the Red Line. Watch the video and try to hold your lunch down. The Sheriff quickly jumps from civility to hostility and accuses the photographer of being a terrorist and stops short accuses him of being an Al Qaeda operative out to blow up the L.A. Subway system.  Next thing we know the dude is cuffed and carted away.  For taking pictures.

Devils advocate for a moment.  When I’ve been asked what I’m doing with a camera I explain its personal use, artistic use and am usually left alone.  Maybe if he answered the same this would not have escalated the way it had?  Regardless of what he could have done differently CrimeScene blog reports the ACLU is involved and suing L.A. County Sheriff over this.

The core of “discarteds” innocence lies in the “Photographers Bill of Rights“.  I carry a copy in my camera bag just in case.

Proposal in Senate to increase driving & cell fines, including bicyclists too.

Image by WatchCaddy via a creative commons licence on flickr.
Image by WatchCaddy via a creative commons licence on flickr.

I was catching up on my blog reading and spotted this bit on Truth About Cars.  The maximum fine for driving and using a cell phone is increasing to a maximum of $528.  Bicyclists are being included for the first time as well though their fines are only a maximum of $50.  I think they should be on parity with each other but what the heck at least the disparity is being addressed now.

Link to the senate proposal HERE in pdf format.  Pages 2 and 3 are where the good stuff concerning the changes to the cell phone and driving proposals can be found.

I for one am glad to see some stiffer penalites coming for using the phone while driving.  What say you?

Venice RV Parking Restriction Makes List of 10 Most Ridiculous Anti-Homeless Laws

Car camping
Some of the RVs and campers along 3rd Avenue in Venice

Consider this a parting shot from homeless advocates who have lost the latest battle in the long-running Venice parking war: the National Coalition for the Homeless has named Venice’s “oversize” vehicle nighttime parking restriction one of The 10 Most Ridiculous Anti-Homeless Laws in America.

Continue reading Venice RV Parking Restriction Makes List of 10 Most Ridiculous Anti-Homeless Laws