Tuesday, August 30, 2005
Click Here, then click on the middle left side of the screen under "Watch the video that started it all." Trust me...you have to see it.
Seen it? Good.
I just wanted you all to know that in this time of extreme tragedy in the south, we Californians know how to kick it up a notch and make a difference. I am personally spearheading an effort to get some Woooo Wooooo! welded on to the exhaust of our fleet of county cars.
I did an interview with a client on a possession case this afternoon who just didn't give a rat's ass about his upcoming trial (for once a possible winner). His witnesses are his family members and friends...none of which have bothered to answer the door or pick up the phone when I call at all hours of the night. It's killin me. My attorney thinks I'm getting frustrated and she's right.
It's just been a rough day all around I guess. I had a great weekend, and my Monday started off great but work today was tough and I've got about 45-50 ongoing investigations that I'm trying to balance. One of the grizzled veterans in our office insists this is the busiest our office has ever been...I haven't been here very long but I'd tend to agree.
Also...this thing about trying to have a relationship with the most unavailable woman in the world is beginning to wear on me. (I can hear you all closing your browser windows now but I gotta vent)
I know I care about her and love her. She's a person that has changed my life and the way I look at almost everything. She's this fantastic person that I want to introduce to my family and friends but I can't. I can't really say anything to anyone. No, she's not married, but she and I are in a position where we can't date. Maybe some far off day it will be possible but not now. When I'm with her, I'm the happiest I've ever been and the most miserable at the same time. It sucks. Is this love?
I'm still trying to think of a way to explain the situation without giving myself away. Sorry for the usual ambiguity. I'm tired and I need to hit the sack I've got a set of surprise interviews I'm doing on my murder case tomorrow morning on witnesses that I know will be home. I'm hoping they talk to me and I need to be as charming as possible.
G'Night or G'Morning...whenever you read this.
Monday, August 29, 2005
Some people would describe Long Beach as a little too gritty for them but I really did love it and proudly called it home for a few years. I actually attended law school while living there but I decided after a year, a law degree just wasn't in the cards for me. I still think anyone that can attend law school at night after working a full time day job and raising a family (not me, but many of my classmates did this) deserve more than any degree in law would ever provide!
Anyway, the point of all this is while I was in Long Beach, I lived in a small studio apartment right near the beach (If you know Long Beach...not the most spectacular beach in the state...but hey, It was still beach!). I lived in an old building with some kooky tenants. There were the two incredibly gorgeous strippers that lived on the top floor, two couples that were always fighting and then having the loudest sex possible, the dude who lived above me, that also had loud sex...with himself apparently, because nobody ever went to his apartment, a couple of Hmong families, an older Japanese lady that was always having me change the light bulbs in her apartment (They were never burned out...she just liked fresh bulbs) even though there was a maintenance guy who was getting paid to do it...although she was always bringing me leftovers, and then there was a guy named Richard.
Richard (no I haven't changed his first name), used to live at the end of the hallway from me on the first floor. Anytime I would come home, he would roll out of his door in his wheelchair, and say, "Hey, bout time you come home! Where have you been? Messing with the chickies?"
He would yell this all the way down the hallway at any time of night. 9:00pm or 4:00am...I don't know if he was waiting by the doorway of if he was a light sleeper but it never failed. That guy would be up and yelling down the hallway without a care in the world. During the day he would always roam around the front of the building in his wheelchair and sometimes hop on the bus for trips around town...just for the hell of it. If something was happening on our street, he would know it.
Richard was a good guy. He was always letting homeless people he found on the street stay with him. On a few occasions they stole from him but he never stopped letting him stay. The landlord always said he never learned his lesson but I think Richard just felt he was doing what little he could to help others.
Anytime I would go to the store, I would always pick him up a couple loaves of bread, boneless chicken, and diet soda...man that guy could drink diet soda. He had to stay away from most sweets because of his Diabetes. The Diabetes is actually why he was in a wheelchair. He had his right leg amputated about ten years ago and he was forced into a chair. He had a prosthetic that didn't fit him very well and he just used it to hold his door open and freak out the Hmong kids upstairs.
I found this website through a link on Your PI News. It has a few selected cities where you can type an address and it will show it's location on a map and in the bottom right corner will show you actual photographs of the street! It's great! I typed in my old address (slightly changed for posting on this site) and I found a picture of my old apartment. After scrolling just a bit up the street, who did I find roaming the sidewalk in his wheelchair caught forever by chance on the internet for all to see?:
Richard! I have no idea how old the picture is but I'm going to be near Long Beach for a conference in November...I'm making a special trip to Roscoe's in Long Beach for the best food EVER! Hopefully accompanied by that guy you see in the wheelchair.
I hope everyone had a good weekend, and after finding this photograph, my week couldn't have started out any better!
Thursday, August 25, 2005
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Before I explain GNA'S...just take a moment and BEHOLD the tasty Tamale! It's shredded pork, spices and a few other delectable items all wrapped up in a cornmeal masa (dough)that is THEN wrapped in a neat little Corn Husk and steamed into a mouth watering meal!
Anyhow, if you read the story, it involves the surreptitious recording of an inmates (Arrested for murder) telephone call to his brother and the fact that they were not told that recordings were a possibility.
Is it weird that I'm not at all shocked by this? Is California the only state that this happens all the time? I thought it was common knowledge that all phone calls were recorded.
I can name two counties in California (I may have worked in one), where the phone lines in the jail are connected through a computer network to the District Attorney's office. Every single outgoing phone call is recorded and stored digitally and at anytime, authorized personnel from the DA's office can listen in on live telephone conversations...from the comfort of their own desk! The systems have only been in place for a year but a DA can still go in and pull telephone conversations from the first day they started recording. Yup.
Monday, August 22, 2005
Friday, August 19, 2005
Hmmm...I guess not.
Alright, here is the pic I wanted to post :
I have some wine to drink before it gets too late....more later!
Yeah...not so much.
I think I am going to work a little bit this weekend but maybe only half a day, finishing some reports and doing a couple more interviews on some last minute Misdo's I picked up last night that were dropped on my desk last minute....actually I probably need to try hitting up a few more houses in my hunt for witnesses on one of my homicide cases...damn it. To much to do and not enough weekend to do it all. Oh well.
Did anyone happen read a recent story on our great Governor's plan with Sexual Predators? Arnie wants to put GPS trackiong devices on ALL CALIFORNIA SEX OFFENDERS! The state bill was prepared by Republicans George and Sharon Runner and George is quoted as saying that it's less than 100,000 individuals that would have to submit to wearing them...ONLY!?!?
If you are a level headed Californian like me you might say to yourself, "Self...What the fuck is something like this going to cost me?" Well, Senator Runner has already said, ""We know it's expensive, but we know our children are worth it." Basically what he's saying is that if you're against his bill, you are a monster that just wants to hand America's children to every pedophile on a golden plate.
If we really want to look at protecting the People of California...maybe we should put Tracking Devices on ANYONE THAT HAS EVER GOTTEN A DUI! Why? Well, let's look at the most recent CALIFORNIA DUI STATISTICS (2003):
Total DUI Arrests: 185,973
Alcohol Involved Fatalities: 1,445
Alcohol Involved Injuries: 31,322
I have to find the exact stats but I'm pretty sure that sex offenders have not killed 1,445 people this year in California.
Who is more of a danger and who do we need to be more careful with? I know, I know. It's like comparing apples and oranges but I guess my point is, where do we draw the line? The sex offenders are registered, theoretically we should know where most of them live. Isn't that enough? They've done their time, the court system has allowed them back on the street, we can't watch over EVERYONE every minute of the day. Some registrants slip through the cracks but that will happen no matter what system we have in place.
At some point we have to sit back and say, "We won't stop being watchful, but let's live our lives without looking over our shoulder every fucking minute."
Oy....I hate getting irritated before the day has even started. I gotta get ready for work...Have a good Friday everyone!
Thursday, August 18, 2005
They are working an attempted murder case and they were going to examine the victims clothing. While in the evidence lock-up, they checked the pants of the victim and found a baggie of crack wadded up in some tissue paper along with some cash. The detective supervising their examination said "oops" and offered to "estimate" the amount of drugs found in the pocket. The attorney and PD Investigator said it would probably be more accurate to use a scale.
Why does any of this matter?
The victim was claiming that he does not and has never used or sold any drugs. The client says he went to the victims house to buy some crack and the victim pulled a gun on him and took his money, the defendant only shot at the victim after he shot at the defendant.
Lesson: If you have physical evidence, examine it before you get too far along in your case. Don't settle for just pictures of your evidence. It doesn't matter if it's clothing, drugs or anything! Some of you may say duh? Others might say whatever. This is the 4th time I've heard of something like this happening, once on one of my own cases.
Do what you want....just food for thought.
Wednesday, August 17, 2005
NOT INVESTIGATION RELATED!
I read an article today in the New York Daily News that goes against everything I've grown up to believe about women and their attraction to men. Apparently Playgirl Magazine did a study of women (and gay men) and found that they prefer the men in their lives to be Poor, Chubby, and Hairy.
Did I fall asleep last night and wake up in bizarro world or something? When did this happen? The last thing I remember when I fell asleep was that women love rock hard abs and as little hair on the chest as possible! Now we have a poll that says that 47% of Playgirl's readers actually prefer a hairy chest?
Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining! If you are going by this oh so unscientific poll, I should have women going crazy over me wherever I go! Maybe it's because I'm covering up what little chest hair that I DO have?
To top this all off, Playgirl is actually looking to find someone that fits the Poor, Chubby, and Hairy mold to be a model in a future magazine...I imaging their magazines will be just flying off the shelves when they have this new fat and hairy centerfold.
Anyway, I need to roll...I have an appointment to have some headshots taken of me...er...I mean Crime Scene photos taken this afternoon.
I gotta go.
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
About 1 1/2 months ago, I wrote about Rudy Illanes, a Public Defender Investigator that was killed in a car crash. The above was written in a post left by his wife, Mrs. Zaira Illanes this afternoon.
I lost a family member very close to me several years ago. I used to think about him everyday. As time has passed, I don't think about him quite as much and the hurt is a lot less than it was back then...but it still stings to think about what things would be like if he was still around.
Mrs. Illanes, if you come back and read this, I just want to say that I'm sorry for your loss but I am so happy to read that you and Christian are doing well. From everything I've heard and read, Rudy sounds just like the man you described and more. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and I wish you the very best.
*NOTE* The link to the Winchester Star story on my post is no longer good, and I haven't been able to pull up the new link. If you subscribe to their site, you can read more about Rudy. I will work on getting a new link up in the next couple of days. Also the photo above is credited to Ginger Perry of the Winchester Star.
It got me thinking about the person that did this search. Is he/she a future law student? Some kid in a high school somewhere trying to figure out what he/she wants to do with their life? Is it someone that just finished law school, took the bar and has absolutely NO idea what to do with his/her future? Maybe they've spent the past three years rushing and rushing to finish school (with as high a ranking as possible) and they never stopped to think of what they were in such a rush for?
I don't know.
I'm just an investigator at a public defender office in a good sized county and a diverse population in an unnamed section of California. I can't say that a public defender job is a good job...what I can say, is that I have a lot of friends that work as public defenders and none of them have ever said it was a bad job. Some (like my friend Downey) aren't sure if it's what they want to do for the rest of their careers but if you manage to get into an office somewhere and you work hard and believe in the work you do, I can't imagine a more rewarding position.
Well, I can. But I think the chances of me ever getting to be Salma Hayek's Pool Boy are pretty slim but I digress...Whoever you are, if you come across my crappy little blog again and you happen to read this...march your ass over to your local public defenders office and VOLUNTEER to help out (or if your lucky they might have some part-time assistant positions open). I promise you that at the very least you'll be able to decide if it's a good job for yourself.
Well, you could also be some jackass that wanted to know who in god's name would spend $100,000 or more in law school loans, then purposely scrape by, making a living as a public defender, with the possibility that they might not pay their school loans back for another 15+ years...if thats the reason, then move on kid...there is always room in the world for another bad suit working at some corporate shithole.
Good luck in your career!
Saturday, August 13, 2005
Oh sweet mary...my legs and hips are sore and my head is pounding. The great thing is I had a fantastic time last night, and the worst part? I think we got home at about 12:30am and I didn't have more than a glass of red wine and two Vodka Cranberry drinks over a period of about 4 hours. I remember when that amount of booze was what I had before I even got out of the house!
I am now a grown man in my early thirties and I'm getting too old for this shit. Actually, scratch that...I am too old for this. I think I say this everytime but the realization hit this morning, I want some stability in my life...my personal life.
I came home last night to a cold house, an empty bed, and a pile of work that I need to get done before next Wednesday. The work isn't an issue but I need to have a life outside of work. I have been extremely lucky (blessed...whatever) in getting to where I am today in my career.
My personal life is another story. My personal life has always been a little less..structured? I'm not sure what the word is that I'm looking for...it's just hard to explain. I've developed a history of getting into relationships that I know from the very start will go nowhere. If for some reason things get serious I just bail out and move on. Not good for anyone. I've hurt people and I've been hurt and I can't do this anymore.
After taking a shower and getting into bed, I noticed a couple of voicemail messages on my cell phone. They were from a woman that I've developed a very close relationship with in the last year. Just hearing her voice made me feel like everything was good with the world. Sure, it may have been the wine and aspirin that made me a little bit emotional but I know that I'm in love with her. I've loved her for a long time. She is a woman that I can imagine spending the rest of my life with, something that I really didn't think it would ever be possible with anyone.
I don't know whats going to happen between us but for the first time in my life I'm really excited about the possibilities of a relationship.
I know I've kind of rambled and this is not investigation related but I just need to do this sometimes...clearing the head and heart. It feels good.
Friday, August 12, 2005
Secondly, to get my mind off of my ever confusing and difficult love life, I am going dancing tonight! I actually suck quite horribly at dancing but after a couple of drinks it won't matter. I just need to get my mind off of things...not that I need alcohol to do it but it helps.
I don't know if I mentioned this or not before but an old co-worker of mine just started a couple weeks ago as a reporter for a big time newspaper in a big city on the East coast. She'll actually be covering the West coast for them and I just wanted to wish her luck...I didn't ask her permission or I would have mentioned her name.
Hope you all have a safe Friday! More tomrorrow!
Wednesday, August 10, 2005
Let’s see, as far as the murder case is concerned ( I will definitely go into more detail on it when the case is concluded), I’ve been trying to work with the paper pushers over at SSI to try and get some medical records but I feel like I’m running in circles with some of those folks. They try to be helpful but they just end up creating more work for everyone every time they pick-up the phone.
A couple of good friends of mine are attending DITA IV (Defense Investigator’s Training Academy in Lompoc, California) so they have been out of action for the last couple of days. It runs from August 8th to 15th. DITA IV is the final course in a very intensive college level program that trains Defense Investigator’s in all manners related to criminal defense work. It’s pretty amazing stuff. Not a lot of Investigative training is geared towards ONLY investigator's so it's great to have an organization that caters to us!
This year DITA has a Criminalist from the Department of Justice who is setting up mock crime scenes and teaching the students to examine and understand the intricate nature of crime scene investigation…all under the watchful eye of someone with over 18 years experience…it’s really fascinating stuff. He’s supposed to email me some pics which I’ll post when I get them.
The last thing I wanted to add was this…I’ll never understand women and love really sucks sometimes. I reserve the right to reverse my feelings on this but as of this very moment…my heart hurts and there is nothing I can do about it. Vague, I know. When I think I can explain it, I will.
Right now, I'm kicking back, eating sushi, and drinking Diet Pepsi (Yes, I'm a traditionalist), and I've got the television tuned to what could quite possibly be the greatest movie EVER. Red Dawn with Patrick Swayze, Jennifer Grey, Emilio Estevez, and that chick who was the Michael J. Fox's girlfriend in Back to the Future. It's about the Russians and Cubans invading the United States and a group of high school rebels getting together (as insurgents) to fight against the commie invaders. It's really cheesy but reeeaally good. Please, just promise me you will all still respect me in the morning.
Anyway, Like it or not…I’m back from the dead…again.
Tuesday, August 02, 2005
I interviewed a witness on an ADW case yesterday. Fortunately for us and not so fortunate for her, she quickly turned from witness to perpetrator.
It is a really involved story on how I even got to this point with her but she admitted to being the person that was responsible for stabbing the victim even though it was our client that had been arrested for the crime. The following is a snippet of our conversation:
Real Perp: Yeah, I'm the one that stabbed her.
Me: Where? How many times?
Real Perp: I don't know, probably twice.
Me: Then what happened?
Real Perp: She started bleeding.
Me: Ok, so after she started bleeding, what did she do? Did she say anything after you stabbed her?
Real Perp: Yeah, she started screaming "This crazy bitch stabbed me!"
Me: Then what happened?
Real Perp: Well, first let me tell you I don't think she was cut real bad. If she was cut real bad she woulda stumbled around more and not called me a crazy bitch. She woulda just said, "I've been stabbed!" and maybe grabbed at the area I stabbed her at.
Me: I guess that's possible.
Real Perp: Well, I think she was high too though. Yeah, she was high because she had dry crusty lips.
When people ask me what I do for a living, I will always tell them I sell insurance or I create websites for a living. Both jobs that seem like the most boring, uninteresting thing in the world. IF someone finds out what I do for a living they are guaranteed to say, one of three things: 1) "Wow, you must see some pretty interesting things!" or 2) How can you defend those people or 3) I would have made the best investigator!
At least now I have an interesting story to tell. I love this job.
Monday, August 01, 2005
This is much too easy: Underwear, a toothbrush, dental floss, disposable contacts, and condoms.
2. Sony BMG just ended a payola investigation by settling with New York Attorney General Elliot Spitzer. So let's engage in some reverse payola: What song or artist would you pay to never have to hear again, and how much would it be worth to you?
I would be willing to pay to have Clay Aiken stricken from the airwaves...forever! Anytime I see his mug on the television or in a magazine I can never tell if he is asleep or just bored with what he's singing.
I would probably be willing to part with at most $50.00 and maybe $70.00 if he and his management decide to play hardball with me. I know that realistically, I can't pay to NEVER hear him again but I the next time one of his songs comes on the radio or his CD is played (Unfortunately I have friends that are Clay Aiken fans...yeah, it bugs me but we're not at the point where I need to pretend I never met them) I can probably pay someone a few bucks just to turn it off.
I need help.
3. In honor of the new Bad News Bears: Did you ever play little league, or other organized youth sports?
I DID play little league, my very first team being the Angels (yes...the league in my hometown was very creative with team names!) where I sucked the big one for the first season and upon my return for the second season, I was traded to another team, the Bandits because I sucked so badly. IT was during my second season and the season after that, I received Most Valuable Player awards because I figured out how to catch AND hit the ball...far. The Bandits went unbeaten and we always ran up the score on the Angels EVERY time we played them (which was a lot because there were only 4 teams in our league). Screw you Coach O! In your face!
I'm not bitter at all.
4. What was your biggest fashion faux pas?
I have really thick hair and I wanted to grow it long when I was in junior high. This resulted in me having an abnormally large head of bushy hair that was very unmanageable. This abnormally large head of hair would then wear parachute pants ALL the time and a neon green Hypercolor T-Shirt that I ALWAY wore with suspenders....I don't know WHAT my parents and friends were thinking by not telling me that I looked like a TREMENDOUS JACKASS.
5. In honor of all our readers who took the Bar Exam this week: What was the hardest test you ever took?