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Our Chaplain Historical Society The Farsider


The Farsider

July 4, 2013


Bill Mattos, Editor and Publisher <bilmat@comcast.net>
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster <leroypyle@sjpba.net>


The Farsider is an independent publication that is not affiliated with the San Jose Police Benevolent
Assn. The SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its web site solely for the convenience
of the retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does not represent or reflect
the views of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or its membership.






The BART strike, Zimmerman trial and Gay Rights decision by SCOTUS have monopolized the news this week. The only thing we came up with on the subject of police pensions was this article sent in by Jim "JC" Carlton, who thought some of you may find it of interest. It's titled "Thoughts from a Pension Spiker" and was posted on the Phoenix Law Enforcement Assn. website.




—Breaking News—

 It seems likely that those of you who are POA members will be receiving a Membership Alert via e-mail later today or tomorrow advising that the arbitration battle with the City was lost and what the next step calls for. NBC Bay Area News was the only media outlet we could find that broke the news as we were going to press at 7:30 a.m. this morning. The early edition of this morning's Mercury News was void of any details. The link below should take you to the video of the news that aired last night on the 11 p.m. broadcast of KNTV NBC Bay Area. It includes a brief interview with former A/C Tom Wheatley. If the video doesn't play, a transcript of the broadcast appears below...


San Jose Police Union Loses Arbitration
Battle with City, Exodus of Officers Feared

By Damian Trujillo
KNTV Bay Area News — July 3, 2013

More than 50 San Jose police officers have either retired or resigned this year alone. Many are frustrated over decreasing pay and benefits. Now, sources tell NBC Bay Area there may be a new exodus.

The worry comes after an arbitration ruling in a labor battle between the city and the police union. Multiple sources tell NBC Bay Area the arbitrator ruled against the San Jose Police Officers Association. The verdict is confidential for 10 days from that ruling.

But, well-placed sources tell NBC Bay Area, police officers will have their accrued vacation time capped. The officers’ ability to cash out sick time will also be capped.

The sources say the officers will not get back the 10 percent in pay they gave up to help the city balance its books during the recession.

“That worries me,” said former SJPD Acting Chief Thomas Wheatley.

Wheatley spent almost 31 years on the force and worries what the arbitrators ruling will mean for the department that was once one of the elite departments in the nation.

“It’s going to hurt,” said Wheatley.  “I just hope it’s not going to hurt for a long time where it becomes acceptable to be just an average department.”

Willow Glen Neighborhood Association President Richard Zappelli said he too is worried. He said he has seen a rise in home and car burglaries in Willow Glen.

Zappelli said his concerns are echoed by neighborhood associations across the city.

“I’m very concerned about the fact that our police department is very shorthanded right now. We’ve got a lot of problems, unbelievably, in Willow Glen right now,” said Zappelli.

The city manager’s office confirms with NBC Bay Area that a verdict is in, but the city charter prevents the city or any other party involved in arbitration from disclosing the verdict for 10 days.

Both sides can still negotiate a better deal during that time, but the verdict in this case becomes binding July 11 at 2 p.m.

However, both sides can still agree to extend the 10-day waiting period.

Morale, retention and recruitment are already hurting on the force. Wheatley fears it could get much worse.



Last Week's Poll Results

For the most recent Rasmussen Reports releases, click here:




June 27th


The historical SJPD story about the robbery involving Hal Chapman and John Mattern on Stockton St. reminded me of an experience in the late '60s. Many officers from that era will remember Doug Cotterall, who worked at the SJPD for 6 years, from '64 to '70. Doug was in the National Guard and worked full time as a San Jose cop. During the Berkeley protests over Vietnam one year at People's Park, Doug was called up by the Guard for riot duty for a number of days. I was his roommate at the time, and we lived in a run down ranch in the Milpitas foothills.

One day in Berkeley, Doug had been relieved from his guard duty post and allowed to take a break. His unit had been camped near the marina, and he and his fellow guardsmen had been told not to leave the area. But when Doug saw some kids fishing on the pier, which was out of bounds, he found some fishing line and joined them. Someone eventually began looking for Doug and he was found sitting on the pier with a line in the water.  The CO, who didn't like Doug's independent attitude, convened an immediate mini court marshal, and Doug was placed in a jeep and transported back to Santa Clara Co. where he was booked into the county jail for dereliction of duty.

Not surprisingly, the sheriff's deputy knew Doug and allowed him call me and give me the news. When I received the  phone call I had no idea what to do. I was 23 and pretty green at the time, but I knew that a stint in jail was not good for a cop, and that his job at the SJPD would be in jeopardy.

Someone — I don't remember who —  persuaded me to call John Mattern, a former San Jose cop who had become an attorney. John listened to the story with interest and said he would see what he could do. I heard later that he called the commanding general and worked things out for Doug's release.

Doug spent a few hours in the holding cell before being released for a return ride in the jeep to Berkeley, where he was greeted by a furious CO who had been embarrassed by his superiors and forced to rescind his decision. Doug finished the riot duty assignment with the Guard and returned to his SJPD job safely.

I called John Mattern a few days later and asked him about his fee. He waived it and wished Doug good luck. At the time I remember thinking what a generous gesture that was, and that it meant a great deal to Doug.

John had a great reputation after leaving the PD. He worked at the Santa Clara Co. DA's office and helped ex-PD guys like me who had gone through law school get hired as Deputy DAs.

With regard to Larry Otter's story, thank God John was a better shot than the robber from Colorado.

After reading the story in the Farsider I made contact with Doug and we spoke for the first time in years. He is still living in San Jose.

I love these historical stories, especially now that the statutes have run their course and we get to hear the facts.

Stan Miller

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June 27th

Hi Leroy,

I'd like to offer my thanks and gratitude to the generous members of the PBA who donated to the Special Olympics at the June 20th PBA meeting. I made a motion at the meeting that the PBA make a donation of $350 to cover the lunch expenses for the officers that ran the torch, the Special Olympic athletes and the volunteers. As it turned out, I was able to withdraw the motion when John Carr, Sr. personally donated $100 which sparked donations to the Special Olympics from other PBA members.. The donations totaled $980, which not only shows the wonderful character and heart of the PBA members, it also shows that supporting the courageous athletes of the Special Olympics is an exceptional cause!

If anyone else wants to get in on the action by donating, they can contact me or go o- line and make a donation to the Special Olympics under the SJPD Torch Run team at

Thanks Again,

Phil Rodgers

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June 27th


Can you post this request for me?

"Martinelli & Associates, Justice & Forensic Consultants, Inc. is seeking a qualified and highly experienced retired dispatcher with either senior or supervisory dispatching experience to work with on a case by case basis with our forensic team of experts as a non-disclosed consultant. Guaranteed interesting, high-profile civil cases while working from the comfort of your home. No travel required. Pay commensurate with education, training and experience. If interested, please contact our firm via email with a letter of interest outlining your training and experience and a resume."

Martinelli & Associates: Justice & Forensic Consultants, Inc.
27475 Ynez Road, Suite 716
Temecula, CA 92591
951-719-1450 Office

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June 27th


I have been wanting to look for info about my uncle's WWII service, but I was too cheap to sign up for Ancestry.com. While reading e-mail on Memorial Day I saw an invite to search military records for free, but on that day only. Had I known about it in advance I would have sent info about it to the Farsider. At least I had my chance, and luckily my uncle had a very uncommon name (mom's side of the family), so finding his record was easy.

Growing up in the '50s, I always knew he was in the Pacific during the war, but he never talked about his experiences. Reading his service record gave me a idea as to why he was not keen on talking about it. He was a radio/radar man on a Fletcher class destroyer named the USS Bennett (named for naval aviator Floyd Bennett). He was on board for the invasion of Iwo Jima, during which the ship suffered minor damage from a Kamikaze. The ship was next deployed for the invasion of Okinawa, during which it took a direct hit by a Kamikaze, killing 7 sailors. Although the Destroyer was saved, it was badly damaged and sent back to Pearl for major repairs. The war ended soon after, and my uncle made it home safely, but I was glad to learn he participated in such famous, critical battles.

Those who are interested in such searches and are able to find a relative on Ancestry.com, their service records are very complete, showing each change of assignment and location. Perhaps the website will offer another freebie next Memorial Day. WIkipedia.com also has detailed service records for most Navy ships categorized by name.

Rich Geiger



The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

It was a rainy afternoon in San Jose. Lt. Phil Norton, Sgt. Doug Wright and I were downstairs in Manny’s Cellar, a local Italian eatery and general cop hangout. All three of us were SJPOA officers at the time and were meeting with one of our local judges for a late lunch. Phil was also an attorney at the time, but that’s another story.

We were sated with pasta and good fellowship as we left chatting and strolling to the rear parking lot when we all simultaneously noticed that the door of the judge’s car was open and someone, obviously a crook, was leaning inside. Phil let out a bellow and immediately went for the crook with me just a few steps behind. Doug, who was a very large guy and wasn't into running, stayed to protect both the scene and the judge. Good thing he did.

The crook ran north around an abandoned building between St. James and St. John as fast as he could. As Phil rounded the corner in pursuit from the asphalt parking lot onto the wet concrete sidewalk, his leather soled shoes lost traction and slipped out from under him so fast that he actually swapped ends, his feet going higher than his head. In slow motion I saw and heard his head hit an inconveniently placed parking meter post. It was an unhealthy, meaty sounding thump. I knew it was going to be bad.

This was during my salad days when I was in good shape from running five miles nearly every day. Phil was hurt, and there was no question that the crook had to be run down. And run we did. East on St. James across Market Street and through St. James Park, the scene of the infamous Hart Lynching from years past. Not coincidentally, I had lynching on the mind and blood in the eye. We crossed First Street at ultra high speed, Second Street at regular high speed. Third Street at a slightly reduced high speed, and Fourth Street at a significantly reduced high speed. What began as a hundred yard dash was proving to be a marathon.

Crooks are supposed to be dopers and in generally poor health, but this guy thought of himself as Roger Bannister, and I was fast running out of steam. The thought of returning to the scene of the crime empty handed was looming. Then at Fourth and St. John, inspiration struck.

“Sorry....’bout....this....but....gonna....have....to....shoot...you....in...the...back....”  Of course I had no intention of shooting, but the crook didn’t know that. I was panting badly and just about out of ideas.

The crook slowed to a walk, then stopped and put his hands in the air.

“Don’t....shoot,” he pleaded. I was relieved to see he was badly winded, too.

After cuffing him we walked back to the scene where we found an ambulance and several police cars. Phil was still out cold and had bled profusely. Bigley’s Body Bunglers (the local ambulance company) had him loaded up and was taking him to the hospital.

I turned the crook over to the tender mercies of the uniforms at the scene for processing. Phil, who was the POA President at the time, was very popular. Doug and I retired to the Department to write reports. But Phil’s problems had just started.

It was dark when Phil woke up at Valley Medical Center (the county hospital, a/k/a VMC). His head hurt like hell. Moving it from side to side he could see other beds and patients. OK, so no private room. Summoning a nurse with the pillow-side buzzer produced confusing results.

“I really hurt, could I have some water and something for the pain?” Phil asked a nurse. Seemed like a reasonable request to Phil.

“Humph.” The nurse turned and walked stiffly out of the room.

The mystery deepened when, upon examination, Phil's next door neighbor proved to be a well known member of the Hell’s Angels.

Puzzled and reaching up to check the dressings on his head, Phil found his wrist handcuffed to the bed railing. Without any knowledge of what the plan was, he knew this was not part of it.

Phil was in the jail ward.

Phil dared to summon Nurse Ratchet. When she appeared he tried to whisper his plight.

“Uhhh, I shouldn’t be here...”

“WHAT? SPEAK UP!” Ms. Ratchet now had the entire room awake.

“Ummm, I think there has been a mistake...”

“Yeah, sure. Mistake. That’s what they all say. Yer innocent.”

“No, I’m uhhh, a uhhh, ummm.” Phil didn't dare say cop in the presence of this fellow inmates and their baleful stares.

He improvised. “I’m a victim,” he said softly. Snorts of derision followed.

“Yeah, a victim of society,” Ratchet deadpanned.

“I need to talk to you in private.” Phil was getting worried.

“You can talk to me here or not at all.” So much for the spirit of Florence Nightingale. This place was, after all, jail.

Doug and I weren’t having any better luck. Going to VMC after finishing the reports we couldn’t find our boss. They had no record of him. Maybe they took him to a different hospital.

By the middle of the night Phil was disoriented, still in a lot of pain and very confused by his role as a prisoner. Another nurse finally appeared out of the gloom, offered him a glass of water and whispered some magic words. “We’re getting a handcuff key and we'll get you out of here. Sorry.”

Upon being wheeled, unshackled, and into a private room, Phil soon showered with the best amenities the hospital had to offer. The now ardent admirer in the starched white nurse's uniform explained:

“Somebody misunderstood when you were brought into ER. It was a police case and somehow you got labeled as a suspect.”

It the end it was Good that the crook was captured. It was Bad that the POA President was knocked cold chasing him. And it was Ugly when Phil found himself handcuffed to his hospital bed next to a Hell's Angel.



The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox

New Articles

• The opening of the George Zimmerman trial has prompted the recirculation of purported photos of victim Trayvon Martin.

• Do hospital mortality rates go up in July due to an influx of inexperienced doctors?

• Video shows a seal being grabbed by a shark as it was being re-released into the ocean?

• Photograph shows U.S. Air Force jets celebrating a Supreme Court ruling regarding the Defense of Marriage Act?

• Does an immigration reform bill provide young people with free cars to transport them to their jobs?

• Photograph purportedly captures children who beheaded their mother on Halloween.

• Did a food writer lapse into a butter-induced coma after consuming 413 Red Lobster biscuits?

• Will posting a legal notice on your Facebook wall protect your copyright and privacy rights?

• Did Albert Einstein once say that segregation was a 'disease of white people'?

• A burglar discovers a suicide in the home he'd broken into.

• A list of 'A Country Founded by Geniuses but Run by Idiots' entries is attributed to comedian Jeff Foxworthy.

• A review of IRS procedures found thousands of tax returns linked to the same addresses.

• Did actor Jackie Chan fall to his death while filming a movie in Austria?

• Did the NFL's Julio Jones and Drew Brees break both their legs in automobile accidents?

• Don't forget to visit our Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news stories from around the world!

Worth a Second Look

• Essay outlines the fates of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Still Haunting the Inbox

• Check out our 25 Hottest Urban Legends list to keep abreast of what's circulating in the on-line world.

Fraud Afoot

• Visit our Top Scams page for a list of schemes commonly used by crooks to separate the unwary from their money.



Want a peek at the new CHP vehicle that will soon be patrolling California's roads and freeways? (Yes, without a black body and a white roof they will be harder to spot in your rear view mirror.) Step inside Jay Leno's garage and the host of the Tonight Show will also show you some classic CHP patrol cars from the past. (18 Mins.)


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Don Hale asked if we had passed along this clip about concentration yet. The answer is not until now. This is a performance where a cough or a sneeze would ruin the entire act. (8 Mins.)


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This clip sent in by Paul Gardner should bring back some fond memories. After all, who didn't have a little red Radio Flyer wagon as a kid? (3 Mins.)


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Want to have some fun with your grand kid(s). Choose one or more of the following simple tricks and bet the kid an Oreo cookie. (3 Mins.)


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Speaking of tricks, watch this clip received from Alice Murphy if you enjoy sleight of hand. The guy's good. (4 Mins.)


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We'll wager that most of you have never heard of "Prince Rupert's Drop." If you want to see something scientifically amazing, have a look at this clip we received from Tom Macris. We doubt you will understand the science in the last half of the video that left us clueless, but the first half has some amazing video footage. (6 Mins.)


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Here is a link worth clicking on if you want to see a new and refreshing twist on the art of ventriloquism. (7 Mins.)


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Watch this young lady and you will see why Zip Ties used in mass arrests should never be applied with the hands in the front. (50 Secs.)


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You golfers who are fans of Rory McIlroy should enjoy this competition between him and a golf robot. (4 Mins.)


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If you have not yet been exposed to this amazing antique German desk or cabinet that was handcrafted with simple tools over 200 years ago, you should consider watching this clip received from Bob Moir. (2 Mins.)


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As some of you may be aware, insurance fraud is so prevalent in Russia that most drivers have a video camera mounted on the dash as evidence to refute false claims. This Russian clip received from our NFL referee who is getting ready for another season on the gridiron was uploaded to YouTube recently. It's one of several similar clips available for viewing on YouTube by searching for "Russian Drivers." (4 Mins.)


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Laughing when two racers crash their motorcycles during a high-speed race is usually seen as insensitive, but there are exceptions to every rule. (Note that while tempted, we have refrained from making a suggestive comment about the two bikes doing the "honeymoon jig.") (2 Mins.)


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Although our grandfathers may not have had cars with 4-wheel drive, one could argue that back in the '20s they weren't needed. Have a look at this clip from Don Hale. (3 Mins.)


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The recent tornadoes that devastated parts of the Midwest reminded us of this clip we ran almost four years ago that shows the power of a twister. The video was taken by a rearward-facing camera mounted atop a rail car on a freight train. Watch what happens about one minute into the footage, after raindrops appear on the camera lens. (2 Mins.)


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Speaking of tornadoes, we'll wager that you have never seen one comprised of fire until now. In addition to "Fire Tornado," the rare phenomenon also is known as a "Fire Whirl" and a "Fire Devil." Have a look at this Australian footage shot last year. (4 Mins.)


Curious about this phenomenon? Click on this Wikipedia link:


• • • • •

The Great Dane Pro website is renowned for its patriotic and spiritually beautiful presentations, and this one received from Chuck Blackmore reportedly sent a tingle down the retired sergeant's leg that was nearly as powerful as the tingle that almost gave Chris Matthews an orgasm the first time Barack Obama was elected President. (6 Mins.)


Here's another sampling from the website that is one of our favorites. It's comprised of photos with a space theme that includes several taken with the Hubble space telescope. The presentation is accompanied to the beautiful instrumental titled "Somewhere in Time" by Roger Williams. (4 Mins.)


And here's a second sampling titled "Beautiful Women of My Time." (6 Mins.)


To see other presentations, follow these steps:

Go to <www.greatdanepro.com>

Select "My Directory"

Choose from any of the titles in the alphabetical pull-down menus at the top of the page and enjoy.

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Pic of the Week

Would the family pet prefer to ride with Mom or Dad?



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