Law Enforcement News

Vol. XXVI, No. 528 A publication of John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY February 29, 2000

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In this issue:

Around The Nation: A coast-to-coast roundup of police news.
People & Places: Warming up to Southern California; O’Connell’s back; honoring a Texas-sized sacrifice; family time.
Immunization booster: NJ court acts to protect cops who intervene in domestic violence cases.
Tickets, please: Personal-service mandate is foiling photo radar in Denver area.
Size doesn’t matter: Palm-sized handguns are banned in Oakland.
Thinking backwards: “Reverse 911” calling gets the job done in Maine.
Why wait? Newport News trains cops to act in a crisis without waiting for the SWAT team.
No loitering: Annapolis creates its first “drug-loitering-free zone.”
Get with the programs: Free software from DoJ agencies.
Does your sidearm measure up? NIJ finds six that don’t.
Forum: It’s what’s up front that counts with community policing.
Criminal Justice Library: Transforming agencies through transforming leadership.
Bright idea: Shining a light on underage drinking.
In the clear: Special prosecutor clears white Hartford cop in shooting of black teen.

 People & Places

Warming up to U.S.

      Policing may be easier in Great Britain, but one can’t beat Southern California’s climate, according to an expatriate Scottish police officer, Paul Cumming, who is now a member of the Oxnard Police Department and will be the subject of a BBC documentary in April.
      As a constable with the Strathclyde Regional Police, Cumming was among the officers who searched for bodies and pieces of debris from a Boeing 747 that was brought down by a terrorist bomb over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988. He emigrated to the United States a few years later after visiting friends and noting the warm, sunny climate of the Los Angeles area. “I wanted to join the Los Angeles Police Department,” he said, “but there were no openings at the time I applied.”..

He’s ba-a-a-ck

      For 30 years, readers of Crime Control Digest got their criminal justice news served up to them with a generous dose of folksy, possum-pie humor courtesy of editor and publisher Richard J. “Dick” O’Connell. Although the publication was sold in 1997 — and with it went CCD’s down-home flavor — a new publication with the O’Connell touch can now be found on the World Wide Web.
      “Everything we have done over all these years, we’ve tried to incorporate into this particular thing, this delivery method of the Internet,” O’Connell told Law Enforcement News. His new on-line periodical,, offers subscribers six different newsletters on juvenile crime, police supervision, organized crime, crime technology and street enforcement...

Ultimate sacrifice

      It may have taken 100 years, but Officer Levi Neal, the first African American to serve as a police officer in Texas, finally received the honor he deserved from the state’s law enforcement community for having sacrificed his own life for that of a fellow officer.
      Neal, a lawman in Bryan, about 90 miles northeast of Austin, was killed on Feb. 24, 1900. According to newspaper accounts at the time, he was a veteran officer who rescued a colleague during a jailbreak and subsequent shootout. His funeral was attended by hundreds in Bryan’s black community...

All in the family

      For Barrett Township, Pa., Police Chief Robert LaBar, the job has always taken precedence over weddings, funerals, graduations and birthdays. But after 32 years in law enforcement, 28 of them as chief, LaBar is ready to spend some downtime with his family. In March, he will retire as Monroe County’s longest-serving chief.
      “I always gave 100 percent of myself but I’m slowing down,” he told The Pocono Record. “I’m just getting burned out. I used to know everyone here — where they lived, what they did, how many kids they had, but now I don’t know many at all"...