Law Enforcement News

Vol. XXVIII, No. 576 A publication of John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY April 30, 2002

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In this issue:

Around The Nation: A coast-to-coast roundup of police news.
People & Places: A leg up; down but not out; no longer the department of Parks; speaking out — in Afghanistan; now you see them, now you don’t.
On the same page: Congress weighs bill to standardize DNA colection & preservation.
Who won? Ruling on Boston PD hiring & promotions has both sides puzzled.
Strings attached: Two departments have problems with COPS grants.
Cutting its losses: Omaha PD bites the bullet on costly, overdue records system.
Going up? Spike in violence makes NYPD officials take notice.
All in the family: Marriage is out for some New Hampshire cops.
Hitting the books: In Colorado court, First Amendment trumps drug enforcement.
One head, two hats: Why town’s part-time chief may have to go.
Long-term fallout: Domestic violence cases continue to reverberate.
Whose land is it, anyway? Native American sovereignty becomes a “get-out-of-jail-free” card.
Forum: Racial profiling & anti-terror strategies; who says policing isn’t a science?
Federal File: A roundup of criminal justice activities at the federal level.
Loose nuts: Bill targets gun-wielding ex-mental patients.

 People & Places

Still standing

      He might not have made the SWAT team this month, but Alexandria, Va., police Officer Bill Lyle can still do more with one leg than most people can do with two, say admiring colleagues.

      Lyle, 37, lost his right leg above the knee in September 2000 while chasing a drug suspect. Against all expectations, he was back on patrol within seven months of the incident with a new goal: making the tactical unit...

Down, not out

      Embattled Schenectady, N.Y., Police Chief Gregory Kaczmarek stepped down but not out of the department last month when he accepted a demotion to assistant chief. He will take a $2,100 pay cut, but some City Council members still consider it a sweet deal for the chief.

      For the past two years, Kaczmarek, 50, has presided over an agency wracked by corruption charges, the arrests of five officers and the suicide of another, and a federal investigation. He has also been absent on leave for a total of 239 days over the past four years due to a back injury incurred on the job. In March, Kaczmarek took a four-week doctor-recommended vacation to relieve stress...

Parks walks

      Having failed in his efforts to persuade the City Council to back his reappointment, Los Angeles Police Chief Bernard C. Parks resigned this month and said he would not sue the city, as he had hinted he might during an acrimonious public hearing in April where he accused officials of engineering his removal through a campaign of half-truths and character assassination.

      Parks, a 37-year veteran of the LAPD, was denied his request for a second five-year term by the city’s Police Commission. The civilian panel voted 4-to-1 against his reappointment, criticizing Parks for being inflexible and arrogant as a leader, and citing his failure to restore morale to the LAPD’s rank-and-file. Parks was also blamed for a two-year increase in major crimes...

On the move

      When he is not speaking for the Hoover, Ala., Police Department as the agency’s media representative, Officer A.C. Roper can be found thousands of miles away in southern Afghanistan, where as commander of an Army Reserve unit normally based in Birmingham he has become the chief spokesman for the U.S. and allied forces in the region.

      Activated on Nov. 24, Roper’s unit arrived in Kuwait on Dec. 7. He spent Christmas and New Year’s Day there, and celebrated his 17th wedding anniversary last month in Kandahar, where he has been assigned since Jan. 24...