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Tri-Valley policing practices put under the microscope

Original post made on Jun 23, 2020

The killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis last month has initiated vigorous nationwide discussion recently about racial injustice and police brutality, and presented new challenges and opportunities for local law enforcement.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, June 22, 2020, 10:37 PM

Comments (45)

30 people like this
Posted by Willy
a resident of Old Towne
on Jun 23, 2020 at 10:07 am

Pleasanton Police Department is outstanding! Don't attempt to screw it up!


10 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 23, 2020 at 10:20 am

There are excellent officers in place. However, we meet only three of the #8cantwait. 5 to go. We also need more training or a change for the mentally ill. Then we need expert oversight of the police department. Then we will have the best police department.


7 people like this
Posted by Transparency...........
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2020 at 11:20 am

I'm relieved to hear that our new Police Chief has concluded that PPD generally do not need to use the carotid hold when giving out parking tickets, but I'd be more interested to understand how many times it actually has been used, and why (assuming this statistic is actually recorded).


18 people like this
Posted by stopresisting
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2020 at 11:36 am

Transparency -

The police department puts a report out every year on their activity. They include a section for use of force and the use of the carotid hold.

2019 - twice in 65,565 calls for service.
2018 - once in 63,988 calls for service.
2017 - none in 72,432 calls for service.
2016 - none in 65,147 calls for service.

The 8cantwait advocates would have you believe there is a rash of carotid hold usage that plagues the police force and that banning it will create a utopian society where criminal surrender without violence. The facts simply do not support this.


13 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 23, 2020 at 12:28 pm

If they aren't being used, then eliminate them.


22 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2020 at 12:39 pm

Kathleen - the more force options you eliminate, the less options there are to avoid lethal force. 8cantwait wants to get rid of the carotid. Julie Testa [Removed pending verification of accuracy.] Some other fringe group will be calling to take batons away. Next thing you know, the only option the cops will have is to shoot someone.

So shortsighted.


19 people like this
Posted by stopresisting
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2020 at 12:48 pm

Pleasanton officers use force in roughly 0.05 percent of encounters (i.e 1 in every 2,000). Being they so rarely use force, maybe we should just eliminate force entirely and give the criminals free reign! *rolls eyes*


17 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2020 at 1:04 pm

Hmm, apparently my precise description of Julie Testa's groupies was offensive. I guess I'll rephrase to Julie Testa's coalition of like-minded, ill-informed, political reactionaries.


21 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 23, 2020 at 2:43 pm

@Kathleen - As usual we are at odds with how to police. You always come off as the know it all when it comes to police enforcement tactics yet you have NEVER been certified in the use of enforcement tactics. Not sure if you have ever taken a class. You need to think of eliminating the use of the carotid hold along the lines of asking your carpenter to leave his flat head screwdriver off his work belt because he only uses it once a year, yet when he needs it it's not there. The more tools you remove from the police belt the closer and faster you will get to lethal force because the gun will be all that is left.
What do almost all of these cases that you talk about have in common?? The person doesn't do as he is asked. And before you say it, yes the Floyd situation is the exception. If they just did what they were asked to do by the police things like this would almost never happen. Yes, someone has to be in charge of the situation and as of now it is still the police, even though there are those that want the criminals to be able to do whatever they wish and the police can't react. Run, no problem, we'll see you sometime again. We have gotten this all off kilter by making martyrs of the criminals and the police being portrayed as the devil.


1 person likes this
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 23, 2020 at 2:46 pm

@urmomz

Please provide your source that Council member Testa was against PPD having tasers.

I am 99.9% certain you cannot.


4 people like this
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 23, 2020 at 5:44 pm

@Carl

Unify Livermore recently held a panel discussion.

The Police Chiefs of Dublin & Livermore were part of the panel.

Both candidly admitted that a majority of their Officer’s time was not spent on dealing with criminals.

Most of their time is spent dealing with:

The homeless
The mentally ill
Substance abuse

Or any combinations of the 3.

Both stated that it would be best to have a social worker involved.

One of the Chiefs even stated that dealing with this segment of the population was not their charter and that it was almost by default that it became the responsibility of the police.

The honesty & candor shown by both was admirable.


2 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 23, 2020 at 7:07 pm

@Bryant
I don't put much credence into panel discussions since activists by far control the narrative. I do have concerns how a social worker would deal with a person having a "violent mental episode" or a stung out druggie who gets combative, but I'm sure it would work just fine for the anti police crowd. I do agree that it has fallen on the police by default because politicians have restricted the use of mental health facilities as a preventive treatment.

If we de-fund the police I'd like to see the tax money spent on programs that would help ALL people, like Shepherd's Gate for battered women or Open Heart Kitchen to feed the hungry. Ya on board with that??


11 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2020 at 7:44 am

Bryant -[Portion removed pending verification for accuracy.] As the city attorney or city manager so eloquently put it to Julie, THE POLICY IS POSTED ONLINE. There is absolutely zero reason to have staff put together a report with a link to the existing policy, which is already publicly available.

Following that meeting, Julie Testa organized her coalition of like-minded, ill-informed, political reactionaries to spew uninformed hate at the police department at the next meeting.

Julie Testa's objective is transparently clear and her baseless vitriol for the police department is shameful.


8 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 24, 2020 at 9:01 am

Carl, here is what I know about—two deaths for certain and one, enough to be concerned. I am not an expert. In the case of Jacob Bauer, the tasers were used incorrectly, and against what was recommended.

Police should not be the ones in charge of a mental crisis issue, as was the case with all the deaths (Estille had a head injury). I hope we find the answers (#8cantwait) and work toward a community where the police come to help.


16 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2020 at 10:09 am

Kathleen -

Who do you envision responding to incidents where:

1) A person has ingested a lethal does of methamphetamine and is acting violently?

2) A person who violently assaulted his wife, received treatment for his medical condition, returned home, is accessing a weapon with the intent of murdering his family, and points a firearm at the people who respond?

These are the facts of the scenarios you're questioning. No doctor, social worker, or therapist is going to respond to these incidents without the police. These are NOT mental health issues, they are scenarios involving violent criminals. It is unfortunate those people died, but it was a direct result of the multitude of decisions they made.

Your desire to relieve violent criminals of any personal responsibility for their actions and place the blame at the feet of the unfortunate officers who did their duty in a lawful and professional manner is sickening.


16 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2020 at 10:16 am

I forgot scenario three, where the suspect was violently assaulting the officer and slamming his head against the concrete. I don't think there's any need to comment further on that.

Shame on you Kathleen.


Like this comment
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 24, 2020 at 10:35 am

@Carl

Absolutely I would be onboard !

Already a $upporter of Shepherd’s Gate


7 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 24, 2020 at 11:45 am

No shame. I’m not going to go through this for the millionth time. There was no need for any of these men to die.


10 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 24, 2020 at 1:36 pm

@Kathleen
You keep saying there was no need for these men to die. Let me ask a question on the Bauer case since you are so convinced that the police were wrong. How would you have handled Jacob Bauer?? Remember that he did commit a crime at Raley's and is now leaving the scene when stopped. You are now on the scene, what are you going to do with Mr Bauer? If he decides he doesn't want to talk with you and walks off do you let him go? If you do let him walk is that 1)justice for the people that he just terrorized at the store and 2) does he still present a risk to others in the community? Your case, your choice....

Not sure if you have answered this question before; You keep saying that Bauer was having a mental crisis. Is that stated in any official document/report or was he just high on drugs as stated in the coroners report?


1 person likes this
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 24, 2020 at 2:08 pm

@Carl

I’ll answer your question.

First, if any crime was committed, it would have been classified as a misdemeanor.

With your 30+ years in law enforcement, I am sure that you are aware that a person cannot be arrested for a misdemeanor unless witnessed by the law enforcement personnel.

What PPD should have done was to issue a citation, give Jacob Bauer the paper, and let him walk the 2 blocks to his house.

This would be similar to receiving a ticket for a traffic violation....pay the fine or appear in court.

This would have also given the PPD time to investigate (which neither Middleton or Chin did)

PPD responded with 10 uniformed officers, all of who stood over Jacob Bauer after he said he could not breath and withheld medical aid while he turned blue and died on the grass behind Jim’s restaurant.


Like this comment
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 24, 2020 at 2:23 pm

@Carl

Coroner’s job is to determine cause of death.

If you’ve read the report, the cause of death was: Drugs, asphyxiation, obesity.

Mental Illness is not a “cause of death “

To answer your other question....
Yes, it is documented that Jacob Bauer was in a state of crisis.

It has also been documented that no one in the store was terrorized (your description).

Regrettably, this “terrorized customers & acted violently “ are damage control narratives put out in press releases by the PPD.

Take a look at the incident report the PPD submitted to the state....you’ll see what I mean.


1 person likes this
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 24, 2020 at 2:49 pm

@Carl

What area did you patrol?

Oakland?
Berkeley?

When I am in either of these cities, I encounter many who are (Or meet the stereotype): homeless, substance abusers, and/or mentally ill.

They have not bathed or has a haircut.

They act paranoid and delusional.

They shout or mumble the strangest things.... making no sense to me.

They also make me uncomfortable.

What did YOU do (or didn’t) when you came across these people?


6 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 24, 2020 at 3:27 pm

@Bryant
"I am sure that you are aware that a person cannot be arrested for a misdemeanor unless witnessed by the law enforcement personnel."

Wrong!! You need to go back to law school. There are many exceptions to this rule based on probable cause. Example; Drunk driver crashes his car into a parked car, upon arrival at the scene the officers smell alcohol on his breath and administer field sobriety test which the driver fails. Since DUI is a misdemeanor do the police a)issue him a citation and let him go on his merry way or b)do they arrest him for drunk driving? Of course they arrest him since they have probable cause to believe he was DUI. In the Bauer case they had probable cause to arrest him for being under the influence of drugs plus statements by the store employees created probable cause that a crime had been committed at the store.

In short, your answer is that you would have cited and released a person that was under the influence of drugs who had just terrorized people in a store even though you had probable cause to arrest that person. I guess that justice for the victim of a crime is really not important to you. That's your choice.


9 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 24, 2020 at 3:47 pm

@Bryant
I worked in Los Angeles and Oakland. The cities that you see today are not the cities that I worked in. These cities today look like third would countries that I visited in my military days.
Enough said!


8 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2020 at 4:47 pm

Bryant -

You are not eligible for a citation if the offense you committed is likely to continue or if you are too intoxicated to care for yourself (853.6) of the penal code. As Bauer still had enough meth in his system to kill a horse, both of these criteria were met. The police could not and should not have given him a ticket.

Kathleen - you’re absolutely right. There was no reason they needed to die. They had every opportunity to not engage in violent criminal behavior and chose not to take it. They had every opportunity to cooperate with the police and chose not to. There was no reason they needed to die, but they chose a course of action that necessitated their death.


2 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 24, 2020 at 5:02 pm

urmomz, doing nothing would have been better. Done talking with you.


Like this comment
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 24, 2020 at 5:28 pm

@urmomz

So here’s the question I have for you.

What penal code did Jacob Bauer break while he was in Raley’s?


8 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 24, 2020 at 5:57 pm

@Bryant
Come on Bryant, this is so easy. For starters we go with 594 PC; Vandalism, breaking the bottles of drinks on the floor. Also the damage to the shopping cart he lifted and threw to the floor. For good measure we can add on 415 PC; Disturbing the Peace

@Kathleen
Guess you are not going to answer my question on how you would have handled the Bauer incident.

Have a good evening all.


1 person likes this
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 24, 2020 at 6:29 pm

So why wasn’t either of those listed in the Police Report....

Stay tuned for the truth....


7 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2020 at 6:45 pm

Doing nothing may have been better. Or maybe in his meth fueled psychosis he would have harmed an innocent person down the street. Fortunately, we’ll never know.


2 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 24, 2020 at 6:50 pm

Are you suggesting that after all this time that there is a great conspiracy that is about to unfold? I have never actually read the police report, is it online somewhere? I’d love to read it if you have a copy of it. I know what I stated was in an article in the PW.

Let’s face it Bryant, you, Kathleen and I see the world thru different lens and I will never agree on your views of policing.

Have a great evening.


Like this comment
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 24, 2020 at 7:27 pm

Carl, there are the tapes to watch. Jacob Bauer was cuffed and then put in a wrap. He couldn’t breathe in the wrap. We can skip how many times he was tased. There are three tapes available in this paper. Please watch them.


7 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 24, 2020 at 7:35 pm

@Kathleen
That is not what I asked you! You keep avoiding my question on how you would have handled the situation of an uncooperative person that you had every right to detain and question. Pretend you are now the social worker on scene, what do you do??? It is not a trick question.

I asked if Bryant had a copy of the police report, I'd love to read it if it is available. I've seen the tapes you are talking about and our two worlds are not in sync with each other.

Have a nice evening.


3 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 24, 2020 at 7:44 pm

He was cooperating. He did not answer a self incriminating question. He was allowed to do that. And then it escalated, and badly.


8 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 24, 2020 at 7:58 pm

That is a pretty short answer with no resolution to a very complicated situation. We know he committed a crime inside the store, and it was known at the time he was detained. If he refuses to give you information that you need, like name, address and DOB, do you just let him walk? Did you determine if he was under the influence?? Do you tell the victims that he wouldn't cooperate with you so you just let him walk away without taking any action?? I think the victims would expect more than that.

That's enough, you obviously don't have a plan to deal with this situation.


7 people like this
Posted by urmomz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2020 at 8:32 pm

Kathleen’s plan is pretty clear - surrender our community to every violent thug that chooses not to cooperate.


7 people like this
Posted by surprise
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2020 at 8:53 pm

The short answer to all of this is that Kathleen Ruegsegger is being the spokesperson for Jule Testa who has a clear vindetta against the Pleasanton Police Department [Portion removed]. Nowhere does Kathleen mention that Jacob Bauer had a lethal dose of meth in him or that he was obese--both things that contributed to his unfortunate death. The Bauer family independent autopsy report verified this as well. When did it become ok to go into a grocery store and throw bottles of for sale product on the floor without paying for them? I would also note, that neither Kathleen Ruegsegger nor Julie Testa were present when all of this was taking place--another fact worth noting.


Like this comment
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 24, 2020 at 9:53 pm

Thank you for pointing out that I wasn’t there. I wasn’t. But I watched the tapes and saw what happened. As will a jury.


Like this comment
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 25, 2020 at 6:36 am

@urmomz

The only thugs in this case are the 10 uniformed PPD Officers who murdered Jacob Bauer.

There is a reason why 80% of the population believes Police Brutality is a problem....AP poll

This is just one example supporting those 80%

Carl, urmomz are obviously in the 20%


Like this comment
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 25, 2020 at 6:42 am

@Carl

Why would it be necessary to kick and strike With baton a detained person in handcuffs & strAight jacket?

Have you done this?

Is this what POST directs officers todo?


Like this comment
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 25, 2020 at 6:54 am

@Carl

In your 30+ years , are you saying that the Police issued press releases and printed in the newspaper are accurate?

Let’s compare:

PPD stated Jacob Bauer bit an officer.
Never Happened

PPD stated that Jacob Bauer was throwing shopping carts.
Never Happened

PPD stated Jacob Bauer was throwing bottles (liquor bottles)
No bottles of any kind were thrown or broken.

PPD stated Jacob Bauer was fine when loaded into the ambulance and died due to a cardiac event at the hospital.
Jacob Bauer died on the grass behind Jim’s restaurant.

The list goes on....

But continue to believe what you see printed in the PW.


9 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 25, 2020 at 8:57 am

@Bryant
Wow, you claim to have all the inside information on what happened in the Bauer case. It’s almost as if you were present. I don’t know your source for the information that you claim to have but why are you wasting your time writing on this thread when you should be contacting Nancy O’Malley at the D/A’s officer or the State Attorney General to report the fabricated narrative that has been put out by the PPD, the Sheriff’s Department and the Coroner’s Office. Just make sure that you have all your “facts” in order before you go since facts are very stubborn things, they never change. Assumptions will not fly, just the facts.
Good Luck


9 people like this
Posted by Linda Kelly
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 25, 2020 at 11:17 am


Were you there, Mr. Annenberg? Did you see the officer's wounds being treated in the video? Did you hear the officer say he didn't want to hurt Jacob Bauer's wrist as he tried to get a 3rd handcuff on because 2 weren't enough to put his wrists together as a result of his excess girth? Did you see that the wrap they put on him wasn't on his chest, where it could have hindered his breathing, but on his legs, to prevent his kicking them? Did you hear him call out to Mr. Trump? Did you see him resist all their attempts to reason with him, trying to calm him by calling him repeatedly, not nasty names, but by his given name...Jacob? Did you see Officer Chin first ascertain from the store employees their reason for calling police in the first place? Did you even watch the videos?? Did you see the two female paramedics prepare the guerny to get him into the ambulance, and see how difficult it was for the officers to lift him onto the guerny?

It was indeed a tragic chain of events, but no one seems to be questioning why is our mental health system so ineffectual. The Bauers tried to get help, but because their adult son, living with them because they hoped he'd be safer with them than on his own, was indeed an adult son. The system takes away parental control of adult sons unless he gives written permission for information to be given them. When the mental health system failed them, they tried to get the police to "do something to help him". Mr. Bauer told me they had called the police, I believe the number was 4 times and were told they couldn't do anything unless he committed an offense. That isn't the police officer's fault! Their hands were tied because the law doesn't allow them to interfere. Look to changing laws, not the actions of the police in this sad, heartbreaking instance. Stop trying to vilify the men and women who attempted to subdue an out of control individual so he could be evaluated and look to your state lawmakers to correct the inadequacies it how we care for the most vulnerable of our society!
And one last thing. Have any of you stopped to consider what deep and enduring pain your discussion here is heaping onto parents whose child is no longer alive? Do you have the slightest clue how painful it is for them to see an argument over his death played out on this forum? Any idea how hurtful it is to hear you talk about their son's addiction, some of you even blaming them? Where is your sense of humanity?
There is a lawsuit pending. Let it be adjudicated one way or the other and please, stop adding insult to the very real injuries this family is already enduring and give them a chance to heal. This isn't fodder for Sunday morning quarterbacking. These lives are irreparably changed forever. Show them some kindness and just shut the (expletive deleted) up.


Like this comment
Posted by Bryant Annenberg
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 25, 2020 at 1:21 pm

@ everyone

All I am trying to point out is that the 200+ page PPD report and the report PPD submitted to the AG has very different information compared to what has been reported as news in the PW.

Both are publicly available.

For the PPD report, just go to the station on Bernal, fill out the forms, pay the $ they charge as a “copy fee”, and you’ll get the report in about a week.


9 people like this
Posted by Carl
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 25, 2020 at 1:31 pm

@Bryant
Nah, no need. I think Linda nailed it, she said everything that needs to be said. If you don't agree with her then just believe whatever it is you think is the truth. For me this thread is now over.


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