Thursday, May 25, 2006

Above the Law

"Above the Law" is a film starring Steven Seagal, who also wrote it. Seagal has a mysterious past and may reveal himself a bit in the storyline. Seagal impressed me, it's the first film in which I saw someone do a press check on a gun. I don't think Seagal even knew he did it, the movement was so natural and quick. That one little natural move makes me think Seagal was an "operator" somewhere.

It seems dog owners in Park City don't remember "Bob" or they are "above the law" .
Park City has a habit of suddenly reversing itself on laws (or not allowing the police to enforce the law.) Take a look at the City Park, it's a wonderful place, you can throw frizbees, play with your dog off leash as long as it's a good dog, and drink beer.

Interestingly enough, the Utah Code states:

32A-12-220. Unlawful consumption in public places.

(1) A person may not consume liquor in a public building, park, or stadium, except as provided by this title.
(2) A violation of this section is a class C misdemeanor.

32A-1-105. Definitions.

(25) (a) "Liquor" means alcohol, or any alcoholic, spirituous, vinous, fermented, malt, or other liquid, or combination of liquids, a part of which is spirituous, vinous, or fermented, and all other drinks, or drinkable liquids that contain more than 1/2 of 1% of alcohol by volume and is suitable to use for beverage purposes.
(b) "Liquor" does not include any beverage defined as a beer, malt liquor, or malted beverage that has an alcohol content of less than 4% alcohol by volume.

(5) (a) "Beer" means any product that:
(i) contains 63/100 of 1% of alcohol by volume or 1/2 of 1% of alcohol by weight, but not more than 4% of alcohol by volume or 3.2% by weight; and
(ii) is obtained by fermentation, infusion, or decoction of any malted grain.

Looks like this loophole in the law allows beer but not other liquor in a park, by state law, of course the city can "tighten" the ordinance to not allow it. (Then it wouldn't be Park City, would it?)

It's also the only city in Utah I know of that allows beer sales 24/7 from stores. (The state leaves it up to the cities to draft an applicable law to limit beer sales. There is no state law prohibiting 24 hour sales or limiting the hours......)

As to dogs:

Even Park City has an Ordinance about dogs without leashes, (at large,) but it seems from a recent radio broadcast the ordinance is not to be enforced by animal control or the police department.

DOGS RUNNING AT LARGE <---Actual city ordinance link..... 7- 3- 2. DOGS RUNNING AT LARGE It shall be unlawful for the owner or person having charge, care, custody or control of any dog to allow such dog at any time to run at large. The owner or person charged with responsibility for a dog found running at large shall be strictly liable for a violation of this section regardless of the precautions taken to prevent the escape of the dog and regardless of whether or not he knows that the dog is running at large. Deemed "at large" unless personally controlled by leash or lead in condo common areas, public parks, parking lots open to public, ski areas, golf courses and shopping centers.

"What about BOB"

Friday, May 12, 2006

Community Oriented Policing

The origins of this story begin with Bob the Cat from Park Citys newspaper the Park Record, this is a tribute, in a small way, to him. (not that he needs it)

To summarize: Bob the Cat was torn to shreds on the Rail Trail by two unleashed dogs on Sept 21, 2001. A full page ad was taken out in the Park Record to find the culprits and the police department was put on high alert. A memorial was built on the corner of the owners property featuring "BOB". Over the following winter and starting into the summer the entire town was in an uproar about unleashed dogs. Now this subject comes up every year, but in May of 2002 a unique program was put into force in the Park City Police Department. The Park Record headlined a story "Have leashes, will travel" in the May 22-24 2002 edition with a photo of the police chief standing near one of the cities police SUV's with a double handful of dog leashes. CNN/AP even carried the story about the police giving out leashes. Even to this day, the well prepared police officer carries a ready supply of leashes.

The rest of the story:
This is one of the first Community Oriented Police projects I never submitted, although it is certainly tongue in cheek. The finished project is reproduced in it's full glory below!

Project Description

Date: May 14, 2002
Department: Police
Title: Dog leash educational program
Type of Item: Discussion
Project Writer: Officer R. King

Analysis: Based on a comprehensive analysis with other officers about the police departments dog leash program, it was left to me to actually put the ideas into writing. The other officers have asked not to be identified and I will do my upmost to carry out their wishes. This project is an ongoing work and I would appreciate any feedback you or administration is able to provide before the final draft.

Topic: To make the "Leash it and Love it" courtesy dog leash program more palatable to the public and still carry an educational message.

Pre Application Survey:
Several possibilities come to mind, The Park Record could certainly provide a public service survey asking the people of Park City to comment and decide some very important issues. Public meetings can be time consuming and fruitless, spreading blame where ever the speaker decides, a well written survey with a limited number of choices for the public could condense the process, and get it on the road to actually doing something about the problem.

It's a well known fact in some circles that praise is a great motivating factor, rather than the fear of apprehension of receiving a citation or reprimand. The idea of praising and rewarding the dog owners with a bonus would be of great benefit to the department and the city as a whole. Dr. Ivan Pavlov, 1904 Nobel Laureate prize winner proved animals motivations can be conditioned and modified though a reward system. The very same holds true for the human animal, public praise in valuing people can do wonders in building a strong police-public relationship and foster a better understanding among the public on the goals of the leash law and education program. The second and third recommendations takes this fact into account.

A community is built around common values, commonly-held standards of acceptable civic behavior, and good communication, among other things. The police department is required to communicate and nurture understanding of the current problem. What better way to do so than to have the public/community acknowledge the problem and participate in the solution (public buy in.)

First Option: Do nothing...
Probably not the most cost effective as public buy in could reimburse the cost of the leashes and brochures. Community is not involved and looks upon the program as a Law Enforcement concern. Very little education value as the current brochures are excellent devices to pick up dog droppings for disposal (pooper scooper). They are made of a heavy card stock and do well for this purpose.

Second Option: Use the existing leashes and brochures as a demonstration program to get community involvement started.
Should be cost effective, local businesses and residents would buy into the program, the businesses could supply local advertising and possible coupons for dog owners appearing at the business with a "leashed" dog. The cost of the leashes and brochures would be absorbed by the businesses and residents wishing to do a good deed for the community. Therefore the public buy in would be greater and possibly transcend the law enforcement function by having the leashes and brochures provided at local establishments as an incentive to "Love your Dog".

The "Love your Pet Bakery" at 605 Main St. Park City, has generously consented to donate "Leash Coupons", these would work similar to the helmet coupons for children the Health Department gave to officers a few years ago. When officers or park hosts see an owner with a dog on a leash they issue a coupon good for a dog biscuit at the bakery. Already during the preliminary analysis the public is beginning to buy in to the concept.

Third Option: Use the existing leashes and brochures as an example of the concern Law Enforcement has for the community and place messages designed to pamper and calm the community on the leashes and brochures.
Could be cost effective, could use a junior member of the Police Department on graveyard shift with a city supplied Sharpie to emblazon the words Park City Police Courtesy Leash on one side and messages such as "Spiro Robertus Sanctus" on the other side. This would serve to mollify certain family members who lost a dear friend to rabid and unleashed dogs on the Rail Trail with the classy and socially proper message "Breath the spirit of Bob divine/holy/pious"
This would serve as a community reminder to upscale Parkites rather than the crude but catchy phrase "What about BOB?" There is also the possibility of BOB's family/guardians providing future inscribed leashes to be handed out on an as needed basis. (Very cost effective)
This raises the possibly of a counter leash being developed, for those that are "anti-cat" or anti-BOB with Latin inscribed messages such as "Nobis freno Cattus" (Be mellow, leash cats) or "Gauisus Evito Cattus" (Be happy, kill cats.)
This approach would provide the best and most community buy in as each faction within the community could have what it wanted and be able to tell the world about it. All factions could design leashes and brochures thereby pleasing everybody at once. The survey of the community would provide the needed donors for the program tools. (Very cost effective)

One officer suggested since Bike Patrol has a lot of contact with the community at various functions, they be utilized extensively as contacts for this educational program.

Rather than Law Enforcement handing out the leashes, and since the majority of the complaints come from the City Park area, we could enlist the aid of the Park Hosts to carry both sets of leashes and brochures.
The Main Street and Old Town area would be well served by utilizing Parking enforcement people, this could fit in well with the job description. and could actually be a positive contact for them, cheering them up immensely, the only drawback is they are limited to a certain area. This could also extend to Main Street utilizing Code Enforcement Officers during Film Fest, Arts Fest and other licensed Master Festivals as well. Self-serve leash posts and brochure stands could be erected at locations throughout the city, that are not served in person. Every city employee that has a chance to meet the public should be trained on the proper response to an unleashed dog, every city vehicle could carry a colorful set of leashes and brochures.

The third option is the most cost effective, has the most public and police buy in, and is certainly the work of many individuals who gave the needed input to make it possible.

Exhibits: See enclosed sample

(A sample leash was enclosed in the envelope)

This is a work of fiction and remains the property of R. King. Any relationship to persons or pets living or dead is entirely coincidental, all names and places are used with literary license by the author.

Wings and Things

Time to spread my wings!!

Yep, I'm retired..... had the little party in the City Council chambers. got my plaque and memories book. A big card (20"x30") and all the cute pastries. Chief Evans was wandering around with a camera, so I'm sure photos will appear here in the comments one of these days. Both Lt's made an appearance. I was glad to see Building Inspector and Fire Marshall Ron Ivie drop by, he's good to work with. Sheriff Edmunds, Chief Deputy Booth and Narc Sgt. Hendrickson dropped by, all people I worked with and respect. Many others were there, some good friends and some acquaintances from the city. I can't name them all. The real party is tonight at the Broken Thumb, wings and drinks is the name of the game. I know several officers that will be leaving the cop cars home tonight. Should be a good time. It's something after 26 years of work to see it end. I wonder sometimes if I really did any good in the world, it didn't seem to help, our society is still going down the drain. Maybe I haven't had my defining moment yet!

Sunday, May 07, 2006

And that reminds me.... A tale about a stinker..

About the worst chicken fried steak I ever had, this was so bad..... It'll stay in my mind forever I think. The date was 10-10-2003.. Driving back from Coos Bay, Oregon with my mother... We stopped at the Black Canyon Junction Fuel Stop( I-84, Idaho), a Stinker station, you know the one with the cute little skunk on the sign. A cafe sits on the property, you drive up, shoulder your way past greasy bo'd truckers and sit down at the table, choking slightly on the haze of cigarette smoke in the air. I should have walked away. I ordered a CFS naturally, and until I find something worse (which I hope I never do) this CFS becomes the bottom baseline to rate all future CFS.
Called: Chicken fried steak
Steak: 1-tough as shoe leather, griddle fried, half burnt and half raw.
Breading: 1-greasy, burnt or gooey depending on the section
Gravy: 1-you want gravy on that, hun? (we only have white gravy in the morning, hun, we might have some brown gravy back there.)
Sides: 1-overcooked watery green beans, need I say more?
Presentation: 1-truckers cafe, smoking allowed, and the waitress calling me "hun"
Overall: 1-of course (no minus allowed)

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Chicken fried in Ilwaco, Washington

The Pacific Ocean and my truck on the sand, sunshine and a bit of breeze, what a beautiful day!! I found a chicken fried steak in Ilwaco, Wa. Portside Cafe, a diner painted yellow and lavender, and huge plattercakes as a side for the CFS, these things were soooo bigggg!! 12 to 15 inches around and you got two of them on a "platter." The Steak was fair, tender, breading was just okay, what made this steak good was the sausage gravy on it, it was AWESOME!!

Rating scale 1 to 10, 1 being a dog shouldn't eat it and 10 being mindboggling.

Called: Chicken Fried Steak (breakfast)
Steak: 6, coating bland, but tender edges and deep fried.
Gravy: 10, real sausage gravy-truly an experience
Sides: you pick-plattercakes and eggs (breakfast time :o)
Presentation: 7, general look of the served meal, dining room and waitress.
Overall: 9, gravy made this meal, the plattercakes were unique also.