"If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change.”
Giuseppe di Lampedusa: The Leopard
THE MOST RECOGNIZED PERSON THAT NO ONE KNEW
The retired NYPD Lieutenant that thousands of cops know, yet never knew, recently passed away. Huh?
Jesse Oldshein was the inspiration for the paper target that thousands of
Jesse Oldshein retired as a Lieutenant, and has been living in
It was less than 2 years ago that he was unmasked as “The Thug” – the male holding a gun in a shooting pose that we shot at as a target at Firearms training for years.
This target was replaced in 2008, with a faceless Mr Clean look-alike, it was revealed that Jesse Oldshein was the model for the target.
When he showed up for firearms training one day in the early 1960’s, Oldshein was asked to pose for a picture. “Pose in a boxing stance”, he said he was told. “Next thing I know, my face is on a target.”
Jesse Oldshein served as a Lieutenant in the 79 Precinct before he retired. It was here that “The Ministers-Father” worked with Oldshein. Freddie remembers him fondly as a great cop and a “great Lieutenant – he really knew his stuff”.
Not only was he the face that everyone knew, even if we didn’t know him, but he was truly a “cops cop”.
In a thank-you letter sent Jesse OIdshein from Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, he summed it up best when he wrote “Yours is the face that launched a thousand careers.”
We say “Farewell- and God Bless” to this NYPD legend.
YOU THINK IT’S TOUGH PARKING IN
Parking in NYC is no easy task. Heck, even the police cars get towed.
But if you think it’s tough here, I found a few articles recently about parking issues in Europe that makes
Parking fines based on the owners income?
European countries are increasingly pegging speeding fines to income as a way to punish wealthy scofflaws who would otherwise ignore the tickets.
A millionaire Ferrari driver min Swtzerland recently received a $290,000. speeding ticket, that was described as being fair and well-deserved by Swiss courts.
The record for a speeding fine in
A spokesperson for the Swiss courts indicated that rich drivers were routinely lightly punished until voters approved a 2004 penal law overhaul that let judges hand down fines based on personal income and wealth. This includes fines for traffic offenses and minor misdemeanors.
Wonder how long before this gets a good look here in the States? That banker’s bonus may just get paid back in the form of a speeding ticket!
DETECTIVE STATUTE IN CITY CHARTER
In April 1964 the City Council passed a bill that formally established the Detective Division in the Police Department.
This measure now allowed the Police Commissioner statutory authority to designate Lieutenant’s as Commander of Detective Squad (CDS) and Sergeants as Supervisor of Detective Squad (SDS). It also allowed the formal establishment of both 2nd and 3rd Grade Detectives – prior to this statute, the only recognized rank as a Detective was Detective First Grade.
That doesn’t mean they weren’t using the titles before this, only that the city charter did not formally establish this until 1964.
FROM OUT OF THE PAST: THE UF 5 ARREST CARD
A way to keep track of arrests made in a squad was by the use of the UF5 – Arrest Disposition Card.
Whenever a detective made an arrest, or was assigned to take fingerprints for an arrest made by a patrol officer, the UF5 was prepared and filed in the detective squad.
Up until the early 70’s, arrests requiring fingerprints were printed only by detectives. The fingerprints were only taken by the detectives; the measure was designed to ensure that prints were properly taken (when you do enough fingerprints, you can’t help but get at it – as most of us have learned!), but also provided the detectives the opportunity to see all those arrests within the precinct. This provided opportunity for future sources of information to be developed – standing and holding someone’s hand for the time it takes to roll several fingerprint cards is certainly a good opportunity to strike up a conversation – and most good detectives utilized this to their advantage.
The disposition of the arrest was noted on the card as well, as a way of keeping track of the “bad guys” in the neighborhood. Prior to computerization, the hand records kept in the squad were the lifeblood of a good investigation.
This provided a reference source when it was necessary to “round up the usual suspects.”
EARLY POLICE HUMOR
A 1948 edition of Spring 3100 has a cartoon that you may find amusing.
Man standing in front of the Desk Officer: “I want to speak to the burglar who was arrested for breaking into our house last night.”
Desk Lt: “Why?”
Man: “because I want to ask him how he got in without waking up my wife.”
THE BURNING CAR PROBLEM
Not only does
It seems that in parts of
To scare the wealthy away from gentrifying neighborhoods, expensive cars are singled out and are lit on fire. These attacks have become so common that some Berliners use it as a way of gauging whether an area is up-and-coming.
Mercedes cars are the most popular, with a barbecue set slid underneath the car and lit on fire as the common way of starting the fire. Over 200 such fires have been reported in the past 6 months.
The areas of the city that have historically been inhabited by the less wealthy, but recently inhabited by the wealthy as they buy up and build – and force out those who have been living there – have seen the most incidents.
Authorities have noted that while some arson attacks may be random acts of vandalism, the location of many burnt cars – which are in areas of intense gentrification – suggest clear political intent.
So the wealthy of
ECONOMIC CRISIS A BOOST TO ITALIAN MAFIA
A recent article in the Financial Times notes how the current economic crisis has proven to be a boost to the bottom line of the Italian Mafia.
Because organized crime is cash based its balance sheet has flourished. As legitimate credit is pulled back, the Mafia is able to increase its usury rates allowing it to charge up to 10 percent a day because of reduced lending by banks.
The protection money – pizzo – extorted from an estimated 160,000 businesses has remained unchanged even during the economic crisis. This despite the increasing number of arrests effected by the Italian police agencies and high number of seizures of people and assets. Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi describes the crackdown on organized crime in
Despite the crackdown, a leading fighter of organized crime notes that “Mafia Inc is a great entrepreneurial and financial group, with numerous tentacles”. Having these tentacles into narcotics – its largest income group – as well as construction and waste disposal, organized crime among the five main Mafia organizations is estimated at equaling 7 percent of
To break the pull on organized crime you truly have to follow the money, in order to break the flow of the money.
HANDLING DNA EVIDENCE
While this is NOT intended as to replace or substitute for any actual NYPD Procedures in place regarding the “Handling of Physical Evidence”, the following basic guidelines regarding DNA evidence is presented as a background for the professional investigator.
Because extremely small samples of DNA can be used as evidence, greater attention to contamination issues is necessary when identifying, collecting, and preserving DNA evidence. DNA evidence can be contaminated when DNA from another source gets mixed with DNA relevant to the case. This can happen when someone sneezes or coughs over the evidence or touches his/her mouth, nose, or other part of the face and then touches the area that may contain the DNA to be tested.
To avoid contamination of evidence that may contain DNA, always take the following precautions:
Wear gloves. Change them often.
Use disposable instruments or clean them thoroughly before and after handling each sample.
Avoid touching the area where you believe DNA may exist.
Avoid talking, sneezing, and coughing over evidence.
Avoid touching your face, nose, and mouth when collecting and packaging evidence.
Air-dry evidence thoroughly before packaging.
Put evidence into new paper bags or envelopes, not into plastic bags. Do not use staples.
FROM THE BOOKSHELF
What are you reading?
An obvious inquiry to an avid reader, often resulting in long conversation. Ask a reader this question and you never know what door you may open.
Let’s take a look at what’s on The Minister’s shelf.
TRUE CRIME: POLICING CONTROVERSY
I have recently acquired a copy of this new book, POLICING CONTROVERSY, by Ian Blair.
This book recounts the thirty-four year policing career of the man who served as the Commissioner of Police for
Ian Blair, properly named SIR Ian Blair – he was knighted in 2003 – holds no punches as he describes the trials and tribulations of leading the largest police force in
Keeping in mind that
It’s obvious that he was not a very popular police leader, and he never professes to be otherwise. He introduced into a police force whose members – with the exception of some specialized teams – do not carry firearms, a corps of non-police officer individuals to assist the uniform force with their daily duties. His introduction of these “civilian” uniform positions, Police Community Support Officers, who work side by side with the uniform Police Constables, was and remain a point of controversy – especially with the uniform police officers.
Don’t these Support Officers take away positions from the other Police Officers? While they do not have all the “powers” of the police officers (constables, as they are known), they have visible duties in close contact with the public throughout the
He discusses at length the controversy over the police shooting of a person mistaken to be a terrorist bomber after the London Subway bombings, recounting many of the frustrations encountered by police whenever time allows a second-guessing of a moments life or death decision.
It was his differences with the Mayor of the City of
As any fan of true crime will appreciate, and as we often say ourselves, no matter the different geography, there are more in common with the police agencies throughout the world than different. Reading what Sir Ian Blair has to say about his 34 year career and his struggles leading the MPS is no different.
I’d love to hear from my policing friends in the
“Policing Controversy” is my newest addition to my True Crime Library.
“SO, WHAT ARE YOU READING”?
No, The Minister does not only read boring true-crime “buff” books, but you already know that.
I am at the point where I’m trying to decide what to dive into next.
I have a copy of Thomas Pynchon’s latest book, INHERENT VICE, sitting on my nightstand.
It’s right on top of WOLF HALL by Hilary Mantel, the novel of Thomas Cromwell and 16th Century
You have King Henry VIII, who is entranced by the Boleyn sisters and wants a divorce. Apparently in the 16th Century, if you were the King of England you had to get a divorce in order to sneak around with other women. We all know how good that went, with the Church saying No-Way, and Henry saying Fine, I’ll just start my own Church then.
Along the way you have Thomas Cromwell and Cardinal Wolsey and all the problems that faced knights living in that time. (Surely very different from knighted Sir Ian Blair!)
Winner of the Man Booker Prize is no easy prize, so there must be something here.
INHERENT VICE is a novel that brings you back to the 1960’s in the form of a bohemian-type private detective who makes very little money and spends his free time enjoying the high quality marijuana that
Lots of people believe it has, as it has been critically acclaimed by reviewers everywhere. Are the reviewers acclaiming it for its story, or because of its well known author?
It’s been compared to Raymond Chandler’s private eye character, Philip Marlowe, but in a
It’s a slightly spoofy take on hardboiled crime fiction, a story in which the characters smoke dope and watch “Gilligan’s
But can it compare to the hard boiled detective fiction, the crime noir that it embodies?
I started reading INHERENT VICE on a short plane ride. Maybe I wasn’t in the right frame of mind.
I think I’ll be looking into what Tomas Cromwell may have to say. I’ll let you know.
THEN, THERE’S ALWAYS…
Just about everyone who has gone through high school will have read, or at least supposed to have read, A CATCHER IN THE RYE. You probably have a copy of it somewhere – or at least the Cliff Notes for it.
With the recent death of its author, J D Salinger, this book has received a lot of attention the past weekend. The death of this 91 year old kook, who chose to remove himself from all human contact, will certainly reignite discussion of his tome.
Written in 1951, The Cathcer In The Rye is a story of a disenchanted youth, Holden Caufield, who has been described as the “prototypical angry young man”.
While Salinger was certainly a recluse, he was no hermit.
In 1953 he retreated from
He married that same year. I wonder how that conversation went.
At 36 years old, he married a 19 year old from
He managed to get married again in 1972, at 53 years old, to an 18 year old freshman from Yale. Wonder how she did in her English studies at Yale. That marriage lasted about 1 year.
Then again in the 1990’s, at around 70+ years, he again married a much younger woman. He remained married to his death. It’s not clear, but I imagine she never really had too much to say!
I have my copy of CATCHER IN THE RYE on by bookshelf – I’ll see how the tale of the knights of old goes. Maybe I’ll revisit Holden Caufield, but just for fun.
Or maybe I’ll get a copy of THE ROAD and read it before the movie reaches high acclaim!
February 2, 1975 PO Frank Bugdin, Midtown North, Shot-investigation
February 4, 1933 Sgt Eugene Monahan, 34 Pct, Shot: Robbery pursuit
February 6, 1864 Ptl John Hoffman, 25 Pct – Accident, runaway horse
February 6, 1864 Ptl Austin Easterbrook, NFI
February 6, 1914 Ptl Edward Murtha, 147 Pct, Shot-Robbery investigation
February 6, 1944 Ptl Eugene Mahoney, 5 Det Sq, Auto accident on patrol
February 9, 1963 Det Richard Arundell, DetDiv, LOD Heart attack
February 10, 1926 Ptl Frank White, 35 Pct, Shot-Burglary in progress
February 11, 1966 Ptl Stanley Butch, Harbor, Fell from boat
February 11, 1982 PO James Carragher, PSA1, Shot: Off duty robbery
February 12, 1930 Ptl George Miller, 22 Pct, Auto accident on patrol
February 12, 1936 Ptl James Young, Mounted, Shot-robbery
February 12, 1940 Ptl John Holt, 28 Pct, Off-duty burglary
February 12, 1980 PO Robert Bilodeau, SCU, Shot-investigation
February 13, 1918 Ptl Samuel Rosenfeld, 102 Pct, Shot-Robbery in progress
February 14, 1921 Ptl John Sheridan, 70 Pct, Line of duty incident
February 14, 1925 Det Chester Hagan, DetDiv, Shot-investigation
February 14, 1963 Ptl Vincent Zichetella, 14 Pct, Shot-robbery
February 14, 1984 PO Thomas Ruotolo, 41 Pct, Shot-Robbery
February 14, 1999 PO Matthew Dziergowski, 123 Pct, Auto accident
February 15, 1917 Ptl Samuel Cunningham, 42 Pct, Shot-GLA Arrest
February 15, 1932 Ptl James Goodwin, 34 Pct, Shot-off duty robbery
February 15, 1971 Det Joseph Piciano, 41 Sq, Shot by prisoner