Archive for Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Lawrence police chief focused on making homes, businesses safer

September 6, 2011


When Lawrence Police Chief Tarik Khatib talks about crime prevention, he often uses the grade school example about the elements needed to build a fire: a spark, oxygen and combustible material.

“You need a suspect. You need a victim. And you need an environment, which is conductive to that,” he said. “If you’re missing any one of those, you’re less likely to have a crime.”

In the one year since Khatib became interim chief and was later promoted as the department’s permanent leader, his requests for additional resources, namely more patrol officer positions, have gained most of the attention.

But he said that’s only part of trying to reduce Lawrence’s crime rate, which in recent years was higher than other area cities such as Lenexa and Overland Park, and university communities, such as Boulder, Colo., and Norman, Okla.

Khatib also wants the department to help people learn more about how to reduce their chances of becoming a victim and how to make their homes and businesses safer.

“There are a lot of educational exchanges that can take place to let people know how to maximize the environment they have to increase safety,” Khatib said.

His officers and the city’s planning department are working on putting together a public presentation for anyone to attend about how to design a safe environment at home or at a business.

Khatib is not looking to make things complex.

“It does not really mean that you have to put a bunch of cameras up,” he said.

It can often be as simple as making sure there are decent sight distances from your front porch by not having overgrown shrubs or trees or installing fences you can’t see through.

Sean Passmore, a Lawrence resident, is concerned about certain safety aspects downtown. In one example, Passmore, who often works downtown at night, said he worried about a new wall constructed near the northwest stairwell of the city’s New Hampshire Street parking garage and near the seven-story First Management Inc. building under construction at 901 N.H.

“My main contention is it just cuts down on the visibility,” he said.

Passmore said it’s caused him some trepidation as he exits the garage.

Robert Green, construction director for First Management, said the wall, which was constructed according to the city-approved site plan, was built to screen the building’s generator and Dumpsters. He said the exterior lights on the building will illuminate the area near the wall.

Khatib said he could not comment on the specific example because he had not seen it. He said often in the planning process there could be balance between many things, including trying to prevent noise, for example.

Scott McCullough, the city’s director of planning and development services, said the police department’s neighborhood resource officers have provided recommendations about security issues in some other projects. They’re not requirements but comments or recommendations for property owners to consider. McCullough said the most specific example he could recall was input from officers about lighting near gas stations and making sure clerks have a clear view of gas pumps.

“These are some helpful suggestions from the experts,” said McCullough, who believes the comments are aimed at reducing possible safety risks and curbing the potential for crime to occur.

The police chief did say he sees opportunities to improve safety downtown, including the lighting in some parking lots. He said some downtown businesses offer good examples about a safe environment. They are well lit and have open windows where people passing by can see inside. That way if a clerk is possibly in danger due to a robbery or something else, someone passing by is more likely to notice it.

Some other businesses, he said, clutter their windows or cover them completely with posters, for example, and it’s less likely someone passing by can see inside in case something dangerous is happening.

“I’m hoping that if we can educate,” Khatib said, “and people incorporate some of the concepts into their environments, we’d be ahead.”


edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

They don't put up camera's, they just tap your homes and automobiles! Still curious how civil rights get pushed aside due to inept police work. Can't wait for this meeting Chief!

Liberty275 6 years, 7 months ago

A dog in the house works wonders and doesn't cost the city anything.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

Dogs work great, but its the tap they put in my dog that costs...LOL

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

Here is what you are supposed to do:

Buy a minature Chihuahua. And then, buy a great big water bowl and food dish for him. Huge ones with his name printed on them in great big block letters:


BorderRat 6 years, 7 months ago

Hey ed, hope you didn't recently purchase a copy of Catcher in the Rye. P.S., don't forget the combo for the coffee.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

Actually it was 1984 , I had to brush up on police state tactics.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

FYI, if you frequent the Pool Room your chance at being receded on audio by law enforcement is close to 100%.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

Not only that, but if they think your involved with drugs they probably have a few CI's (confidential informants) all over you! You better think twice who you talk to and around in that place.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

Law Enforcement is dug in deeper than an Alabama tick in that place! Consider yourself warned.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

Maybe they should get evidence of a crime and then prosecute...instead of using big brother tactics and violating civil rights!

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

"Here's a novel idea....don't break the law..."

Easier said than done. Do you have any idea how many laws there are in the United States? You can't have a prison-industrial complex without law breakers... Federal law, state law, county law, city law, neighborhood association law.... Land of the free! Give me a break... It's statistically impossible to NOT break a law here. It's been designed that way, suckers.

July 23, 2011 "Many Failed Efforts to Count Nation's Federal Criminal Laws"

For decades, the task of counting the total number of federal criminal laws has bedeviled lawyers, academics and government officials.

"You will have died and resurrected three times," and still be trying to figure out the answer, said Ronald Gainer, a retired Justice Department official.

In 1982, while at the Justice Department, Mr. Gainer oversaw what still stands as the most comprehensive attempt to tote up a number. The effort came as part of a long and ultimately failed campaign to persuade Congress to revise the criminal code, which by the 1980s was scattered among 50 titles and 23,000 pages ...

lawslady 6 years, 7 months ago

Funny. I have yet to commit any major crime. And any time I do - like when/if I speed, I am usually aware of it. Guess some folks are just more inclined to defy authority.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

"Is speeding now a criminal offense?"

Yes, and it has been for over 100 years. However it is a minor misdemeanor, except for speeds greater than 100 mph.

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

Generally speaking, speeding is NOT a criminal offense, Ron, speeding is not a misdemeanor either. it's a civil infraction. I'm no lawyer though. Any lawyers in the house? Correct me if I'm wrong.

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

Gibson CEO: US Government Won't Even Tell Us What Law They Think We've Violated

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

1) Everyone needs to stop bothering edmclinn.

He does not need anyone to point out that he has a problem, that won't work. Just like the time I tried to point out to a schizophrenic patient that her delusions were not real, the only thing it did was make her very angry. To her, her delusions were very real.

And I know very well from direct experience at least a facet of what his problems consist of, I've had them myself. I became convinced of the quite delusional belief that someone I barely knew and his friends were plotting against me, I wasn't sure exactly why, but I was sure that was the case.

I became terrified and hid in my apartment a lot. When I went outside, they might see me and then they would have a chance to, well I wasn't sure what, but it was going to be bad.

Finally I summoned up enough courage to perform a reality check. It was during the reality check that I found that my fears were totally unfounded.

Then I packed my bags, and made plans to resolve this situation.

Then, came a knock on the door. I was not at all surprised to see a police officer there, and he inquired if there was a problem, and if the police department could be of any assistance.

I explained that the plans were already made, I was getting my bags packed, would see my psychiatrist in the morning, and I would probably be checked into the hospital.

I wasn't sure how long I was going to be there, but I was sure things would be fine when I got out.

The officer was very polite, and agreed with me that it was his opinion that I was making the correct decision. Then, he told me to be sure to call them (using 911 was just fine) if I had any more problems tonight. They would be here right away, he would pass on the information that a call from me was to be taken seriously.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

2) I got to VA hospital in the morning, and talked to my psychiatrist. I told her about the situation, and she checked me into the psych ward right away. That was my third stay in the psych ward, by the way.

I was escorted though a series of layers of security. When I got to the ward, I told the nurses there that they were after me. They were very polite, and told me that I was perfectly safe here, no one could get me, no way. We have guards and police officers of our own, you're very safe here.

Then, I was given a room way at the end of the hallway, so I would feel safe. Whoever was after me was going to have go through so many layers of security to get to me that I didn't have anything to worry about. Besides, if they did get here, at the push of a button, the nurses would get all the help they needed. There were a few big and strong ones already there, by the way.

And the PTSD ward was right downstairs, the staff there could be here in less than a minute. And, in less than three minutes, the VA police officers would be here too. Plus, the Topeka Police Department could be here in less than ten minutes if that was not enough.

So I felt quite safe. I didn't leave the ward for a few days though, and no one had a problem with that. I didn't have to go to the cafeteria, they brought my meals to me.

After a while, I saw my whole situation in a totally different and more realistic light. No one was after me, especially the people that I didn't even know.

So, after eleven days, I went home, and was told in no uncertain terms to come back if I ever had a problem again, get right here, the door is always open. And they mean it too, the door is open 24/7, especially for a former patient.

I'm fine now. Well, more or less.

But I'm afraid that edmclinn is not a veteran, so he cannot use the services of the VA hospital in Topeka. But, I think there are many other resources for him, but until he realizes that his fears are unfounded he's not going to get his problems resolved.

But, on the other hand, maybe he is involved with using or dealing drugs, and in that case, yes, it is quite possible that the police department really is keeping an eye on him.

But if that's the case, I sure do not understand why he is being so public about it.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

a clip from:

"Hoaken (1979) defined obsessive suspicions as unwelcome, repetitively intrusive thoughts recognized by the patient as ego dystonic [9]. However, Mc Kenna (1984) reviewed that such persons have a solitary abnormal belief and described it as an overvalued idea rather than an obsession [6]."

[9] Hoaken, PCS (1976). Jealousy as a symptom of psychiatric disorder. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 10, 47-51

[6] McKenna,PJ (1984). Disorders with overvalued ideas. Br J Psychiatry,145, 579-85

57chevy 6 years, 7 months ago

Amazing how prevention is the answer for burglary rather than technology (read money) and at least one Police dedicated to robbery (there are currently none). But more police with more powers are always the answer for drugs and alcohol related crime. I would favor a new police administration that felt that any crime with a victim is more important than crimes that only indirectly effect the community at large. Given the recent World Health Organization positon statement declaring the global war on drugs a complete failure, maybe we could find a chief who wants to fight a war he can win and actually take of the taxpayers and THEIR property. I wonder if the downtown merchants who already get more than their fair share of police services pay more or less taxes than those of us who are just waiting to retire so we can move to a safer community in Missouri?

somedude20 6 years, 7 months ago

Why am I hungry for a beef kabob? Huh, must be subliminal messaging. Good work Chief Khatib Can't the City of lawrence just buy or make a robocop? One robocop should be better than a force or young and wet or old and fat cops.

Ro bo cop ro bo cop

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

They do work!

Because bird flu is passed on by fecal material from birds, and tin foil hats keep it off of you.

Isn't that obvious to everyone?

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

I'm looking to organize a protest of police surveillance tactics, anyone interested in joining?

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

If I listened to you long enough I'm sure you would break a law, we are all human anyway right! My standpoint is more about strong armed law enforcement tactics rather than committing crime. But you probably already know about all that don't you.

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

Yo! Mister know-it-all! I don't go looking to break 'the law' ever. I believe the police are out of control and should be reined in. I guess, in your book, that makes me a law breaker? Get a clue, champ. Many people are sick of the NWO paramilitary police state.

WHY 6 years, 7 months ago

UNIKU--we can not all live lives as boring as yours. Besides what is being proposed is an attempt to stop police illegality. The constitution is as important as any petty criminal offense. The fourth, fifth, and sixth amendments are the supreme law of the land.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

Everything I know has come from person observations made over an extended period of time. I have made no observations under the context of your question. I have however observed how they use ISP data taps to monitor internet activity, along with phone taps. Hope this helps.

oldvet 6 years, 7 months ago

Effective utilization of your CC permit will help cut down on crime...

Adrienne Sanders 6 years, 7 months ago

Or just use common sense, keep your doors locked (car & home) even if you're "just going out for a minute", don't walk by yourself down dark alleys, stuff like that.

BitterClinger 6 years, 7 months ago

Yes it will, along with situational awareness. When seconds count the police are only minutes away.

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

So how does my comment stating that allege "Various law enforcement agencies, which may include police and sheriffs departments, listen to the audio taps in my automobiles real-time" violate comment usage rights?

Fire_all_politicians 6 years, 7 months ago

If you have proof the cops have tapped your phone or installed recording devices in your car, and they don't have a federal search warrant, I do believe they are in violation of the law. Got proof? Sue them. Otherwise, share some of what you are smoking with the rest of us willya?

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

Got 5000.00 for me? That's the cost of bringing in a professional to detect the devices. Then I still have to prove who's device it is. Believe me if I had the money is pursue it faster, I have already spent 2500.00 speaking to an attorney on this. If I had the money available that's exactly what I would do. "money" its how law enforcement gets away with so much, they have it average citizens do not!

BlackVelvet 6 years, 7 months ago

Hogwash! Do you have a specific reason to think they (the police) are tapping your phones and listening in on your conversations in your car? Elaborate. Anyone can make baseless claims that "they are always watching me". Why do you believe they're doing this to YOU?

edmclinn 6 years, 7 months ago

It's all totally true. You can choose to believe it or not. I wouldn't have believed it 4 years ago either, so I do understand your position. The easiest way for me to prove it would be take you for a ride and ill explain how I know. It's easy to pick out the people following.

BlackVelvet 6 years, 7 months ago

Sounds like an attorney is fleecing you more than the cops are.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

For $2,500 you can spend quite a lot of time with a therapist or psychiatrist, and that money would be much better spent.

hipper_than_hip 6 years, 7 months ago

FYI: Having a Gadsden flag as your avatar is just asking the cops to look into your business.

pace 6 years, 7 months ago

Celebrating the 50 year anniversary of protecting the community by telling home owners to cut the bushes near their house and for businesses to be visible and lit. How about involving the community, asking and communicating with them? A citizens review board would not only increase "true" dialogue and foster a better working relationship but would increase trust. Mutual respect, working together, it is about crime. Stopping it, finding ways to reduce it and helping solve em.

irvan moore 6 years, 7 months ago

i remember a few years ago when the crazy old lady down the street got her car back from police impoundment and was convinced they put stuff in it to spy on her.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

She could have fooled them by trading it in!

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

I read some time ago that there has been some effort lately within our local police department to be more sensitive to the problems of the mentally ill. Sometimes it is not obvious that a person's problems are of that nature, and other times it's very obvious.

I certainly hope that our new police chief works with the local psychiatric community and trains his officers to be sensitive to those among us who have problems that are symptomatic of mental illness and recognize those situations.

In some cases, a mentally ill person is a danger to others. In that case, something will have to be done immediately in order to protect the public.

A person with mental illness that suffers from paranoia can be a very dangerous thing, however usually only to himself. Here's a typical statement made by a paranoid person:

"I'll explain how I know. It's easy to pick out the people following."

Another symptom of paranoia is the belief that he is being listened to or looked at where ever he goes. These fears are very real to the person involved, and since I get quite paranoid myself sometimes, I recognize the symptoms instantly. I've been hospitalized myself for that sort of problem, as I noted above.

So if you want to know something about it, just inform me of that. Not only have I lived through the experience, I have read about it a great deal as well. And I believe that I'm literate enough to convey the information that I have gathered over my lifetime to others.

But if a person chooses to remain within his fantasy world of paranoia instead of talking to a therapist or psychiatrist about his problems and resolving them, his demons will never go away, and he is going to suffer needlessly.

From reading another thread, it did appear as though our local police department actually did go to someone's house in an effort to assuage his fears, but apparently they were not able to produce positive results.

It is not a crime to be paranoid. So, unless someone with that problem is forthcoming with his problems to a therapist or psychiatrist, he's just going to keep on believing his fantasies and trying to convince others that his fears are real.

And that's not a crime either.

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

FULLERTON, Calif — Fullerton Police officers tased and beat Kelly Thomas, a mentally unstable homeless man to death in an incident that was caught on video. The FBI is investigating.

It could happen here next.

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

"Here's the problem: Those cops are symptoms of a disease, and the disease is big government — arrogant, self-serving big government. It all starts at the top,"

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

Out of a nation of over 300,000,000, there will always be a few undesirable incidents.

As of 2007, Kansas had an estimated population of 2,775,997.

So, since there are now almost 3,000,000 citizens of Kansas, it should be very easy for you to find some event like that in Kansas, right?

However, that is only a very superficial statement. Have you been to California within the last year? I have, it was terrible. No one dared to go outside alone at night, that is one of the stupidest things you can do.

Murders and gang rapes happen every day in southern California, they are very common.

California is a very grim and crime ridden state now, and so any comparison with what happens there and what happens here in Kansas doesn't mean much at all.

You could compare the police tactics used in Mexico with the tactics used here in Lawrence. That would have just about exactly the same amount of meaning.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

I was in southern California to help my sister and her husband move out of what is now called 'Murder City'.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

In case you're wondering, 'Murder City' is about 60 miles east of L.A. Its formal name is Moreno Valley.

Until about 10 or 15 years ago, it was quite an upscale community.

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

It's a systemic problem nationwide. It may not have happened here, but that doesn't mean it can't and that it will not. The New World Order paramilitary police are not your friend. In the last 20 years, Protect and Serve has become Obey or Die.

Have you ever heard of the Llamas brothers in Topeka? I suggest you read up on that case and how it was handled. A complete cover-up by Topeka police of four off-duty drunk officers who invaded a neighbor's party at 3am and started a brawl ending in two shot because of loud music. No BAC of the thug LEOs until noon the next day. The officer who did all the shooting had an open container of beer in his vehicle parked at the scene...etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. No transparency, no accountablilty.... The whole justice system is trashed and full of trash, IMHO. We need to fix it. You could be the next victim. Couldn't happen to you, right? Wrong.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

It may be a systemic problem for you but it is not for me, because I'm not paranoid about it like you are.

Every time I've been pulled over by law enforcement, and that's quite a few times, it was no big deal. Except for how funny it was more than a few times! Law enforcement officers have certainly wasted a lot of their time on me. As well as given me plenty of funny stories to tell!

So far I've been arrested something like 4 times by our local police, pulled over a few more times by the regular police in this and other towns, I'm not sure how many times by county sheriffs, but the most interesting time was when the K.B.I. became suspicious and pulled me over and had a dog sniff down my car.

The K.B.I. men are seriously into their work, but in my case, there was nothing to be serious about except for how the 7 cats I was transporting were getting very hot in my stopped car, and it was all because of their unfounded suspicions.

I'm not really sure why that all happened to me, but it sure does make for some gut splitting laughter when I tell the stories! Especially the one about how I there were something like 4 police cars chasing me down, and when their superior officer got there to see what all the ruckus was about showed up I knew him!

And so of course, he was the one I had to explain to that it was MY ice cream that the chase was all about. He didn't even crack a grin, but about 6 police officers all just went limp when they found that a big time call had been made about a man seen transporting ice cream across the street from his own home.

They had to get here in a rush for THAT? Yes, that was the problem. True, I had not paid for the ice cream, but I had a coupon for it stating that the store would give it to me free, as a promotion.

Have you ever been arrested for carrying ice cream only across the street from your home? I sure have. It gives me a laugh every time I think about it. Quite a few other people have laughed about it too!

But you mentioned Topeka specifically. Quite an event happened one night downtown there. They needed THAT many officers to form a half circle around ME, all of them ready to draw their guns?

Well, that one is pretty funny to tell about also, but jumping right to the conclusion, I was told, "You can go now."

Oh, and another time in Topeka, oh wow that one was so funny, I have to at least smile when I think about it. I've told quite a few people about that! But I'll skip it, if I told about every time the police came to inquire what I was doing, I could write a book, I think.

So, every time I have been pulled over by law enforcement, it was no big deal at all, except twice I had make a phone call for bail money. The weird thing was, I needed the exact same amount of money to bail myself out of jail both times:


Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

"The New World Order paramilitary police"

C'mon give. What do their uniforms look like?

Crazy_Larry 6 years, 7 months ago

Sunglasses, tin badge, bullet proof vest, jack boots, black or blue uniform, black gloves, pistol, AR-15, Remington 870, taser, pepper spray, etc.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

Even the KBI agents that stopped me didn't have uniforms like that!

They wore black uniforms, and across the front of the chest in great big red letters, they read: KBI

They didn't wear sunglasses, they didn't wear gloves, and had none of the equipment you described. In fact, the only weapon that I can recall that they had was a dog. And he was a very nice friendly Labrador, but he did sniff everything a lot.

The KBI agent was quite friendly, and asked where I was going. I told him Ozawkie, and then he claimed that he didn't know where Ozawkie was, where was it?

I'm sure he was lying! He wanted me to tell him where it was!

Duh! It's 30 miles NE of Topeka!

So, if I see an officer wearing a uniform fitting your description, I will follow his instructions to the letter.

In the immortal words of Sarah Palen:

You betcha!

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

But, I did learn something. I need to carry $15 on my person at all times, so won't need to call out for bail money.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

I had to laugh, you would not believe some of the things I've heard!

I sure didn't!

classclown 6 years, 7 months ago

When Lawrence Police Chief Tarik Khatib talks about crime prevention, he often uses the grade school example about the elements needed to build a fire: a spark, oxygen and combustible material.


A spark is not an element needed to build a fire. What you need is heat. I hope the schools are not actually teaching kids these days that they must have a spark to create a fire.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

He was talking about the four elements of Aristotelian physics.

Earth, air, water, and fire.

Apparently you didn't learn that in school.

(This is not a joke.)

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

But you do have a very, very good excuse.

That is, you're not nearly as well educated as I am.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

Sorry 'bout that. It got bigger after I passed 165 semester hours in college.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

Seriously though, he never heard of the four Aristotelian elements?

I thought that was a basic.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 7 months ago

But there is another aspect to Mr. Khatib's use of the term "element" in that context, and it can be found in a dictionary that contains the several definitions of the word:

el·e·ment noun.

  1. A fundamental, essential, or irreducible constituent of a composite entity.

  2. elements The basic assumptions or principles of a subject.

  3. Mathematics a. A member of a set. b. A point, line, or plane. c. A part of a geometric configuration, such as an angle in a triangle. d. The generatrix of a geometric figure. e. Any of the terms in the rectangular array of terms that constitute a matrix or determinant.

  4. Chemistry & Physics A substance composed of atoms having an identical number of protons in each nucleus. Elements cannot be reduced to simpler substances by normal chemical means.

  5. One of four substances, earth, air, fire, or water, formerly regarded as a fundamental constituent of the universe.

  6. Electricity The resistance wire in an electrical appliance such as a heater or an oven.

  7. elements The forces that constitute the weather, especially severe or inclement weather: outside paint that had been damaged by the elements.

  8. An environment naturally suited to or associated with an individual: He is in his element when traveling. The business world is her element.

  9. A distinct group within a larger community: the dissident element on campus.

  10. A part of a military force, especially: a. A ground unit in an air force comparable to a platoon. b. A unit of an air force equal to two or three aircraft.

  11. elements The bread and wine of the Eucharist.

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