By Norman Jahn
How many current and former LVMPD officers could write a ‘manifesto’ like former LAPD Officer Christopher Dorner? Unfortunately, I know of far too many! How many could end up at their ‘last resort’ when this could be prevented from happening?
Does anyone believe that an ‘internal’ review of Dorner’s complaints by the LAPD will result in any findings of fault with the agency and their internal investigations? Don’t hold your breath.
Would the national (or worldwide) news arrive in Las Vegas to cover the drama if Dorner had been a former member of the LVMPD? We just had a horrible tragedy (Walters family) that I am certain was influenced, in part, by the treatment that Hans Walters had received by the LVMPD. I won’t hold my breath that the LVMPD or anyone else will ever reveal any findings from the investigation that is currently underway.
The LAPD claimed that Dorner was ‘ranting’ and someone applied the term ‘manifesto’ to the information that he wrote. He apparently mailed letters, discs, and other information to various people. He even sent his ‘challenge coin’ to Anderson Cooper at CNN. We will probably never find out what was contained in those communications – not unless the media cares to do some investigative reporting.
Dorner did not use the word ‘manifesto’; the LAPD or media created it. He addressed his standard ‘memo’ document:
SUBJECT: Last Resort
He went on to write, “The question is, what would you do to clear your name?”
“A name is more than just a noun, verb, or adjective. It’s your life, your legacy, your journey, sacrifices, and everything you’ve worked hard for every day of your life as an adolescent, young adult and adult. Don’t let anybody tarnish it when you know you’ve lived up to your own set of ethics and personal ethos.”
Dorner was upset that his NAME was ruined by the LAPD. Many recent articles on Dorner have addressed the concept that he lost his personal ‘identity’ when he lost his job. His mental health obviously declined over time to the point of desperation and this was probably because of the damage (a career DEATH PENALTY) a police organization can do to an employee when they fire you for being untruthful. Not only does the employee lose their current job, but an unlimited number of future employment opportunities, because of the termination and the reason. In reality, a ‘truthfulness’ termination is more likely just about semantics or a subjective interpretation than it is about HARD FACTS and evidence of intentional deception.
A termination under these circumstances is most certainly a crushing blow to the identity of a person who has had this very identity built by the police department. Yes – the hiring and training process for police officers encourages them to work together as a team, to virtually live and die for each other. When you find yourself betrayed by those who told you about the teamwork, honor, loyalty, respect, and greater good, the promises… are flushed down the toilet. When you can hardly get a job as a security officer for a shopping mall, then you might just decide to fight back.
We have officers at the LVMPD that complain about others for ridiculously silly things such as worrying about ‘turf’ (crossing a street) and what officer might be trying to eat at the same restaurant. If the complained-about officers are ‘targeted for termination,’ then it is “only a matter of time” until their careers come to an end. Lt. Hans Walters personally told me that Cpt. Todd Fasulo said, “It is only a matter of time” when he referred to me and the end of my career as a sergeant with the LVMPD.
He was right. Less than six months after I went to work with Lt. Walters on the Strip again (and after I had been interviewed on NPR radio about NOT being at war in our community), our ‘new’ captain (Todd Fasulo) HAD my job and he enjoyed taking it.
Someone should count the number of officers this ‘rookie’ captain has had fired. I’m sure that he has set the all-time record! Prior to coming after me, he had already started the process to fire another officer (Dakota Almazan). Almazan had gone to eat at a restaurant where a Vice squad was already eating. He excused himself. Sgt. John Hayes made up lies and reported him. He was cleared of the primary charges brought by Hayes. The arbitrator said that department witnesses had ‘embellished’ the facts. A lieutenant (Karen Hughes) lied about not remembering how she had involved herself in the investigation. It was one of those, “I don’t recall” answers.
I’ve written to Internal Affairs and the Employment Diversity Section for over two years. They won’t even respond. Is this what Christopher Dorner faced when he tried reporting corruption, excessive force, and even officers taking photos of dead bodies during their shifts (using personal phones/cameras) and circulating these pictures in some sort of sick contest? Dorner also complained about treatment by female training officers and other senior officers who ‘got off’ by treating new officers like garbage. LVMPD officers could keep reporting problems and if the Gillespie MAFIA decides to ignore them, then nothing ever happens. The media does not get involved until something tragic like the shootings in California occur. This is really sad.
If police departments and the courts and appeals systems don’t see what can happen in police department disciplinary/termination cases, then some officers choose to go ‘public.’ I don’t know if Dorner attempted to get the media interested in his plight BEFORE he went crazy or not. How can a man reclaim his name and rectify a problem when he is not properly represented, can’t afford to continue the fight, and can’t get anyone to listen to him?
The LAPD vilified Dorner right from the start. I don’t need to see training videos of Dorner at the range or doing defensive tactics training. He had grievances. He turned into a murderer. He turned into a bad guy and the LAPD tried painting him as a ‘crazy man.’ I’m sure they did not figure that so many people would actually read the manifesto and empathize with Dorner. The LAPD had a lot more at stake than Christopher Dorner did… They still have a lot more at stake even after Dorner’s death. Will they care to look into all of the issues Dorner complained about? I seriously doubt it.
The solution? If Dorner (or members of Metro) could expose the corruption with the assistance of the media then there would at least be another option before they find carnage their last resort. I give my approval to the media to file an open records request for my correspondence to IA/EDS and this would include all of the correspondence between myself and Lt. Hans Walters. The LVMPD thinks they can get away with reading our e-mail without our approval, locking us out of our offices, ransacking our personal files and materials, and then standing by and kicking us out the door–never to return! They have the POWER… yet they don’t have the truth!
If there will ever be any true transparency from the Gillespie MAFIA then it could start with a simple request for records on these matters. They will refuse… but the TRUTH WILL SET THEM FREE!