Law Enforcement News

Vol. XXVIII, No. 573, 574 A publication of John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY March 15/31, 2002

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In this issue:

Around The Nation: A coast-to-coast roundup of police news.
People & Places: Newton’s apple; the Bureau shuffle; hard loss in the Big Easy; reaching out; one last step in Philly.
Campus daze: Ups & downs of college requirements for cops.
Columbus goes global: Ohio capital eyes diversity response unit.
Help is a click away: Cyber-crime lab makes debut in St. Louis.
Any more bad news? A double dose of unwelcome news for DC police force.
Fixing a hole: How some sex offenders avoid registering with police in Ohio.
Youthful indiscretions: Some departments open the door wider to recruits with prior drug use.
By police, for police: Software tandem makes traffic stops easier.
A light with bite: Device combines spotlight with pepper spray.
Helping the helpers: Police in Mass., R.I. seek mutual-aid protection.
You booze, you lose: A victim’s alcohol use hurts sex-case verdicts.
LEN interview: Kicking up some dust with Portland, Ore., Police Chief Mark A. Kroeker.
Forum: Policing in the era of terrorism.
Criminal Justice Library: Who’s driving the crime-policy bus? Plus, solving the riddle of the 1990’s crime decline.

 People & Places

Newton’s apple

     Calling him an extraordinary human being who has been to Ground Zero and returned, Newton, Mass., officials in January chose former New York City police inspector Jose Cordero to lead the city’s force.

      The 45-year-old Cordero, who was sworn in last month, will be Newton’s first Hispanic police chief. Selected from a pool that included four in-house candidates, his appointment was contentious. On the eve of the swearing-in, three members of the Board of Aldermen voted against him, but the majority of the 24-member panel voted in his favor...

Bureau shuffle

      The war on terrorism will have to carry on without Barry Mawn, head of the FBI’s New York field office, who left in February, just short of the mandatory retirement age of 57, to pursue a private-sector security job.

      But Mawn said he is leaving confident that the al Qaeda terrorist network will be neutralized in coming years. “Terrorism is clearly a priority of the President, the Department of Justice, the FBI and all of law enforcement right now,” he said. “None of us wants another 9/11 to occur. We are going to do everything in our ability to prevent that.”

Big Easy, hard loss

      After losing his bid for mayor this month, New Orleans Police Superintendent Richard Pennington returned to work on March 4, but said his last two months at that post will be the last time he serves as a municipal chief — unless, of course, someone makes him an offer he cannot refuse.

      “I’m not going anywhere,” he said.
“I’ve decided to make my home here.” When his contract is up in May, Pennington said he will go to France and Italy for three months with his wife and 5-year-old son. Then he will consider other job options. Pennington, 55, is finishing a book he is writing about his seven-year tenure as head of a department he was hand-picked to lead by Marc Morial, who was barred by law from seeking a third term as mayor.

Reaching out

      Bolstered by the results of a confidential survey that found broad rank-and-file support for the hiring of an outsider, Allentown, Pa., officials this month went ahead and hired Stephen Kuhn, a law-enforcement veteran and policy adviser to the Washington, D.C., police force.

      The eight-page questionnaire was circulated with the cooperation of the police department by Mayor Roy Afflerbach before he took office in January. Seventy of the department’s 200 officers responded, with 59 saying they would accept a chief chosen from outside the agency. Eighty-five percent responded that morale was either low, very low or incredibly low. Four percent termed morale “nonexistent.”

One last step

     When you’ve had a 36-year career highlighted by 30 commendations, including the department’s Award of Valor, there would seem no place to move but up, which is what Sylvester M. Johnson did in January when he succeeded John F. Timoney as Philadelphia’s police commissioner.

      Johnson, who was sworn in on Jan. 4, had served as Timoney’s deputy commissioner of operations, a post to which he had been appointed in 1998. He played a major role in the department’s successful handling of the Republican National Convention in July 2000 and was also the main architect of Operation Sunrise, a multi-agency anti-drug initiative...