I am joining the social media revolution and now have a Facebook Fan Page and a Twitter account. What's next? Squidoo maybe… who knows. Obviously, I have not been active here of late. My life got very complicated last Fall – I run my own company and got another new job, so wear two professional hats as well as continue to strive to be the best Mom and wife I can be. With all of the juggling and massive workload I've taken on, I barely have time to sleep and my priorities have had to become crystal clear. Family, work, family, family, work, family, clean house, family. That's pretty much how it goes.
Meanwhile, though, I just can't let LAPD Wife go. And so I've decided that it's better in line with my lifestyle right now to take it over to the Facebook format. I will NOT take down this blog. If I am inspired to write longer content it will be here. But for regular thoughts, updates, etc, look to my Facebook page.
I encourage all of those with FB accounts to become a fan of the page. And if security is an issue for you, you can still check in and read it without becoming a fan. That's the beauty of pages in Facebook, they are visible to everyone.
So join me at the LAPD Wife Facebook Page and chime in. Can't wait to reconnect with you all!
Interesting article in the LA Times about the effect that the financial disclosure is having on special teams such as gang units, etc.
Los Angeles Times: LAPD Gang Units feel the pinch of financial disclosure rules
Also, here is LAPD author Jack Dunphy's take on the now infamous "gun at at a snowball fight" incident in his Christmas Day post:
Pajamas Media: Cops Shouldn't Bring Guns to a Snowball Fight
Just a quick note about this great option I found for recycling Christmas cards. St. Jude's Ranch for Children, an organization for abused, abandoned and neglected children takes old cards, removes the front that is unwritten upon and makes new ones from them to be sold in packets for the next season. Cards are accepted through Feb 28 and you can find more information here at St. Jude's Ranch.
Merry Christmas everyone. Much love to all! – Renee
From LAPD officer and writer Jack Dunphy – his latest column on the manhunt and death of cop-killer Maurice Clemmons:
And now Maurice Clemmons is dead.
It’s good because the alternative almost certainly would have been at least one more dead police officer. Despite the most intensive manhunt ever seen in the Puget Sound area, Clemmons was not tracked down by detectives or cornered by a SWAT team. It is somehow fitting that he met his end in an encounter with a lone officer on routine patrol in the middle of the night, an officer who was engaged in activity almost as mundane as that which occupied the four officers who were killed Sunday morning in Lakewood, Washington.
Read the rest here: A Fitting End for a Cop Killer
Deputies from the sheriff's Lennox Station are conducting a "Gift for Guns" program until 3:30 p.m. today, Friday Dec 4, where residents can safely and anonymously surrender firearms in exchange for gift cards. The event, which will be repeated from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec 5, is being held at the Food 4 Less parking lot, 11407 Western Ave. For more information, contact: Lt. Jeff Adams or Deputy Wayne Brown at (323) 242-8784.
I had a fantastic time this weekend chatting with Ken from PoliceBackground.net and Gloria, an LAPD applicant, about my experiences and outlook as the wife of a seasoned LAPD officer. What's really fun is that our conversation is now available as a podcast you can listen to at your convenience.
Check it out at the link below. I hope you like it and just remember, this wasn't rehearsed or scripted, so if I sound goofy, be kind. I have to say that I really had fun talking about a subject I am passionate about and hope that I provided words of hope, motivation, inspiration or maybe just laughter for those who find themselves in similar situations.
I typically watch the news in the early morning hours before the kids get up for school and then turn it off when they wake up. As the wife of a police officer I am very careful about what the kids see in the media – all too often the lead stories scream headlines of "officers ambushed," "police killed," and so forth. (For more on that, see Cop the Truth's post Four More Washington Officers Ambushed and Murdered.)
My daughter is 6, my son is 9. My son is becoming aware of the dangers of his father's profession. He's interested in the military and watches the History and Military channel shows with his father. He's started to ask questions and we can see the wheels spinning in his head about his father's job. We are trying to be as honest and open as we can, while also tempering the scary truth with sensitivity for his young outlook on life. I don't want to take away his innocence too soon and let him know that it's possible his father can be killed by some POS who sees a uniform as a target.
My daughter, however, is still in that stage where all she thinks Daddy does is help lost kids, keep bad guys away and come to school once in awhile to talk to her class about safety and strangers and maybe handcuffing her teacher for laughs. She dances around the house in her ballet uniform and says she's going to marry her Daddy someday.
This morning, however, she snuck out of bed early and into the kitchen where I was packing their lunches and watching the news about the horrible tragedy in Washington. I had left the room for one minute - kid you not – one minute, and come back to hear her sounding out the words (she's learning to read and phonetically sounds out every sign, word or writing she sees) "Four Off-Cers Killed To-Day." It was like one of those slow motion moments as I thought "crap!" to myself and lunged for the remote.
Too late, I saw that the words she was playfully sounding out had sunk in. She looked at me questioningly and asked if she had read that right. "Yes," I told her, accepting that the cat was out of the bag and sitting down next to her and drawing her into my lap.
"Why are there 4 police dead, Mom?" she asked. I explained to her that Daddy was ok (he was at work at the time) and that these officers, who lived far away, had died because a very bad man had made a very bad decision and left it at that. I told her that these officers were now in heaven and continuing to protect people like guardian angels and God was happy to have more help.
She cuddled with me for a minute, looked up at me with those Bambi eyes and said she hoped their Mommies are ok. I tried not to cry and suggested that maybe we can make a card for their families and she like the idea.
Luckily the clock was ticking and we had to get ready for school. In all the hustle and bustle I forgot about that moment until after I had left them at school. I have to go pick them up in a little while. Will she remember this morning and ask me more? She may not - attention spans at this age are pretty darn short. But I will watch her and try to be ready.
People ask me what my big fears are for my officer husband. Targeted attacks like this top the list.
My heart hurts.
One of our friends, Mark, called this weekend and asked for Officer Jake. Mark and his wife Michelle are good friends of ours who we socialize with often. They have 3 daughters, the younger are friends with our kids and their teenage daughter is one of our babysitters. However, when Mark called and asked for Joe, the way and tone he did so made me realize that this was one of "those" calls. I can always tell when friends call for help of the law enforcement kind – there is a different tone of voice and I've gotten very good at reading it.
So I handed the phone to Jake with a whispered "sounds like a serious help call" to him. Within a few minutes of talking, Jake switched from joking friend type conversation to serious, get-down-to-business conversation and left the room to discuss whatever they were talking about away from the listening ears of the kids.
Our friend's 14-year-old daughter had been getting obscene phone calls on her cell phone. The caller, who sounded like a male in his teens or 20s, saying things like "I want to have sex with you," or commenting on how hot she looked that day, how sexy she was, all sexual in nature. The caller ID was blocked, and though the girl's parents told her not to answer blocked calls, she had several friends who also showed blocked numbers so often picked up the calls anyway.
Our friend Mark reached the breaking point when, as the caller was again bothering his daughter, she handed the phone over to her Dad who threatened him to stop calling and harassing his daughter. The called was so bold as to tell him that he thought his daughter was hot and planning on having sex with her. Mark saw red and called Jake.
Jake was very sympathetic. We have a daughter and this is a fear of a father, for sure. He gave advice to Mark such as 1) don't answer any blocked calls no matter what. 2) make a report to the local station. 3) get a new cell phone number asap.
They followed his advice and thankfully the calls stopped. But as far as trying to track down this harasser, there wasn't much to be done. If they were able to find out who the caller was, and prove it – which is unlikely – the most they can charge him for is a misdemeanor child annoyance. Phone companies will not backtrace a blocked call without search warrants, etc.
Even though the calls have stopped, Jake has cautioned our friends to let this be a lesson and still be aware. He says that often the harasser is someone they probably know, or close to someone they know. A friend's brother, father, relative. Or a friend of a friend who was able to get her number – pretty easy with teenagers who are socially active, in sports and not very aware of protecting their privacy.
They are being much more cautious, and Jake talked to the daughter too, giving her advice and cautions to follow. We hope that some of it sank in. At 14, you feel indestructible, but it's just not true. A good lesson for all of us.