Feb 102015
 

My husband, Mike Katz-Lacabe, is a human rights and privacy advocate. Several years ago, he discovered that the SLPD was secretly using license plate cameras to photograph both cars and the areas around them – and were keeping those records indefinitely.  Since then, police departments have refused to share this data from citizens, but if you drive a car in the Bay Area, you can assume that the police has access to hundreds of photos of your car, you and the area around it.

Mike’s activities have been covered by the news media. Here, in reverse chronological order, are stories that are derived from actual interviews with him:

Oh, how the kids have grown since this 2009 photograph from the SLPD archives.

Oh, how the kids have grown since this 2009 photograph from the SLPD archives.

Feb 062015
 

These are Mike Katz-Lacabe’s tweets from this year’s San Leandro Police Department report on itself to the City Council.  While video of the meeting is available online, the Council no longer takes minutes of its meetings. This meeting took place on Feb. 4, 2015. There was no discussion of racial profiling.

indicates an instance in which San Leandro Police Chief Sandra Spagnoli “misspoke”. My comments are in italics.

– San Leandro Police Dept. annual report to the City Council at 7pm tonight at City Hall – 835 E. 14th St. Agenda

– San Leandro City Council meeting on annual police presentation beginning with a 20-minute video produced by Dolphin Graphics.

– Initial focus by San Leandro Police Dept. presentation is on community outreach and public events.

– More on SLPD use of Weibo: 163,000 followers. No estimate on how many are real.

– Diversity of SLPD: 92 white 5 unknown 27 hispanic 10 black 15 asian 1 other
– That’s the entire department – not just the sworn officers.
Despite repeated asking by Mayors and Council members, year after year, SLPD Chief Sandra Spagnoli has yet to release the demographics of actual sworn officers. City Manager Chris Zapata has not been able to get her to comply with the Mayor’s requests.

– Indigo Architects of Davis hired for SLPD expansion into south offices conference room. Est. cost: More than $6 millionSLPD
– Captain Ed Tracey: “We don’t just eat donuts.” When discussing a new break room and micro mart for the police dept.

– From 2013-2014, SLPD says that crime dropped 5%. From 4750 Part I crimes (defined by FBI) in 2013 to 4526 Part I crimes in 2014.
– There was no information provided about San Leandro’s crime rate, which takes into account the city’s population.

– Last year, SLPD had three officer-involved shootings and tasers were used 10 times.
– Last year, SLPD received 25 complaints. When the police department investigated itself, three complaints were sustained.

– San Leandro residents have registered 56 cameras with SLPD. Goal for 2015 is to get that number to 100.

CALEA certification for SLPD’s dispatch center is being considered in 2015.

– San Leandro Councilmember Benny Lee: “Police are just like us. They have to go back to their families on a daily basis.”

– San Leandro Councilmember Corina Lopez asks for information on languages spoken by sworn officers, speaking to diversity of languages.

– San Leandro Councilmember Lopez asks about gun buyback program. “I’m always a fan of that.” Despite no evidence that they are effective.
– Despite acknowledging doubts about effectiveness of gun buybacks, Chief Spagnoli supports them.

– SLPD Captain Ed Tracey: We don’t have much of a gang problem in San Leandro.
But that’s not what SLPD told the State government when it was looking for grant money:
– From April 2014 CalGRIP report: The San Leandro PD “reports that gang activity in the target Eden Area is a growing concern.”

San Leandro Councilmember Ursula Reed: Do photos of arrestees always get sent out with Nixle? SLPD Chief says its all or nothing.
A quick look at Nixle shows that this is not true.

SLPD Chief says all agencies working with NCRIC keep license plate data for 1 year. That is wrong. Not Alameda and Menlo Park.

Spagnoli also suggested that the San Leandro City Council had approved the 1-year data retention policy currently in place, when there was no such vote.

– Former San Leandro Councilmember Diana Souza at tonight’s meeting, but didn’t speak as she has done at two recent meetings.

– San Leandro looking to use Justice Mobile app in near future for access to state/federal criminal justice info

– SLPD Chief: vehicle thefts at BART parking lots are NOT part of San Leandro’s auto theft statistics.

– In response to San Leandro Councilmember Prola, Chief Spagnoli says Oakland PD are committed to moving to EBRCS

– San Leandro Police annual presentation to City Council didn’t mention license plate readers, red light cameras or comm. surveillance cameras
But Mike Katz-Lacabe brought them up during public comment, thus Councilmembers asked about them during Council questions
– There are four license plate readers in San Leandro’s downtown parking garage.
– Five San Leandro police cars currently have license plate readers, according to Sgt. Ron Clark.
– Spagnoli wants license plate data from parking garage to be sent to NCRIC joint fusion center.
Spagnoli’s husband works for NCRIC
– San Leandro Councilmember Lee asks for data on effectiveness of license plate readers. SLPD response: No data – only anecdotes.
– San Leandro PD has been using license plate readers since March 2008 and has yet to produce any data on their effectiveness..

Feb 022015
 
San Leandro Mayor Considers Anti-Tank Protesters to be a Threat

Fear is a stone throw away from political repression, literally. Update: The closed session meeting was finally cancelled on the day of the vote, but the City Council chambers were filled with police officers in uniform, in order to intimidate public speakers.  Two dozen citizens still spoke out against the tank. Only one San Leandro citizen without business ties to the police department spoke in favor of it. Mayor Pauline Cutter has called for a special closed session meeting of the San Leandro City Council  tonight, to take place before the Council votes to acquire a BearCat (Ballistic Engineered Armored [Continue Reading]

Feb 012015
 
Proposed Policy Places No Restrictions on BearCat Use

If the San Leandro Police Department gets their way, not only will they get a brand new Ballistic Engineered Armored Response Counter Attack Truck (Bearcat), but they will be able to use it in whichever way they want.  The proposed policy allows use of the vehicle for “purposes including, but not limited to, calls for service involving potentially armed subjects, Tactical Team callouts, search warrants, officer or citizen rescues, or authorized training” (emphasis added).  The policy, furthermore, allows the use of the BearCat “during non-violent demonstrations” when “there are objective facts demonstrating a risk of injury or death to police [Continue Reading]

Jan 312015
 
City Manager Prioritizes Police Over Innovation

Police Chief Now to Report to City Manager, CIO to Report to Community Development Director Police Chief Sandra Spagnoli, whose latest accomplishment includes the SLPD’s shooting of fleeing black and Latino suspects in three separate occasions, is now reporting directly to City Manager Chris Zapata.  She was previously reporting to Assistant City Manager Lianne Marshall.  Zapata has been explicit on his unwavering confidence on the police chief and has long taken the attitude that she can do no wrong, he has even excused the multitudes of falsehoods Spagnoli has conveyed to the City Council and the community as unintentional “misstatements”.  [Continue Reading]