Friday, August 3, 2007

Independent UCLA Report Finds Officer Violated Guidelines & Standards

UCLA Powell Library
While we did not meet at UCLA, my wife and me are both UCLA alumni. She graduated with a B.A. in Psychology and went on to graduate studies elsewhere. I came from an undergraduate school elsewhere and earned an M.F.A. in Film. We met at a birthday party of a mutual UCLA friend held at the Pico Bowl, a bowling alley that no longer exists. It used to be on the same site as the new theatre complex at the Westside Pavilion, at the south-west corner of Westwood and Pico. Oh, another thing, we got married at UCLA. While we were living in sin the year before our wedding, my wife and her mother scoured the city looking for the best place to hold our nuptials. Translation: they had lunch at every place in town a couple of times a week for a year. Everyplace had their own way of nickel and diming you to bankruptcy. I'd told my wife to set up the wedding and I'd show up, so the decisions weren't up to me. Eventually, they stumbled upon the alumni center at UCLA. They agreed to let us bring in our own band, our own art deco huppa, our own everything and they didn't charge us for every slice of cake or every sheet of toilet paper. The best thing, to my observation, was that parking was abundant and most everyone knew the directions.

Now, as much as we love UCLA, we could care less about the sports teams or even the parking problems we had as students, but we do care about the school and its students. We don't like bullies. We don't like violence. We don't like authoritarian types abusing their power.

On November 14, 2006, an over-enthusiastic, university police officer "violated UCPD guidelines for the acceptable use of force and generally accepted standards for police conduct" when he used a taser three times on racially profiled student Mostafa Tabatabainejad, according to an independent study released today. Meanwhile, the UCPD Chief Karl Ross's investigation has found the officer has done nothing wrong.

The incident was filmed by students with cellphones or digital cameras and posted on You Tube. This prompted the independent investigation.

When I attended UCLA, I found the UCPD officers helpful and courteous. I felt that they were there to serve us, the students, and I never feared them. We all know some people can't handle authority and will use any power at their disposal to hurt anyone else, but I doubt there is a "culture of evil" at the UCLA police department. Let's hope this is just a aberration, but this case is not over.

Taser Incident Report Names Several Violations - The Daily Bruin

Report Criticizes Use of Taser on UCLA Student - Los Angeles TimesUCLA Royce Hall

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