Deputies Speak To Neighborhood Watch

Deputies Dennis Melum of Yreka, Johnny Evans and Chuck Rehdorf of Happy Camp, speak to concerned community members at an emergency meeting after our Neighborhood Watch had to be temporarily suspended.

Neighborhood Watch
Duties and Procedures
To Be Clarified

The word was all over town. Happy Camp News reporters heard it from several sources. The rumor was that Happy Camp's Neighborhood Watch was suspended. Local residents feared that criminal activity might increase. An emergency meeting was scheduled for that evening, Monday January 10, 2005, and about fifty concerned citizens gathered at the Grange Hall to discuss the matter.

Dennis Melum, Deputy Sheriff and Community Crime Prevention Officer, runs the county-wide Neighborhood Watch program. He was there to speak to the community volunteers and others who attended the meeting. People here appreciated that he cared enough about our town to come all the way out here to resolve the matter right away.

He assured us that our Neighborhood Watch program will continue and that the Sheriff's department appreciates the work volunteers here do to make Happy Camp a safer place to live. Melum briefly discussed the history of our Neighborhood Watch and announced a new one is being started in Somes Bar due to a series of burglaries in that area.

He told us Sheriff Riggin's goal is to have five deputies in Happy Camp. This will be a big change from having just two resident deputies plus whoever is assigned here from out of town. Melum said Riggins was interviewing two deputies for the job that very night. There will be new law enforcement officers assigned here soon.

Melum said background checks on volunteers and training sessions must be done. He said those who patrol must follow a manual and that further training will take place at the next Neighborhood Watch meeting so everyone will be informed of important policies.

He explained that by not following the department's policies Neighborhood Watch patrols could put a deputy's life in danger. "You are not to interfere with a case. You are to be eyes and ears," he said. He said volunteers could stay back and observe but that they might be more helpful by patrolling the rest of the town while the deputy is occupied with detaining a suspect.

We learned that Neighborhood Watch volunteers have four rules that must be followed: (1) never chase a suspect; (2) be available as eyes and ears to assist the deputies; (3) do not approach an officer during a traffic stop unless waived in; and (4) make contact by radio before going to a crime scene - this would allow the deputy to tell them where they should park.

The two deputies now assigned to Happy Camp were also at the meeting and took turns speaking. Johnny Evans is now the deputy in charge of our sub-station. He replaced Bucky Jefferson in the leadership position after Jefferson was reassigned to Yreka last year. Chuck Rehdorf moved here a few months ago and has already been a great help to Johnny Evans and the rest of our community.

Legal Writing in Plain English: A Text With Exercises
By Bryan A. Garner

Admirably clear, concise, down-to-earth, and powerful-unfortunately, these adjectives rarely describe legal writing, whether in the form of briefs, opinions, contracts, or statutes. In Legal Writing in Plain English, Bryan A. Garner provides lawyers, judges, paralegals, law students, and legal scholars sound advice and practical tools for improving their written work. The book encourages legal writers to challenge conventions and offers valuable insights into the writing process: how to organize ideas, create and refine prose, and improve editing skills. In essence, it teaches straight thinking--a skill inseparable from good writing.

Replete with common sense and wit, the book draws on real-life writing samples that Garner has gathered through more than a decade of teaching in the field. Trenchant advice covers all types of legal materials, from analytical and persuasive writing to legal drafting. Meanwhile, Garner explores important aspects of document design. Basic, intermediate, and advanced exercises in each section reinforce the book's principles. (An answer key to basic exercises is included in the book; answers to intermediate and advanced exercises are provided in a separate Instructor's Manual, free of charge to instructors.) Appendixes include a comprehensive punctuation guide with advice and examples, and four model documents.

Today more than ever before, legal professionals cannot afford to ignore the trend toward clear language shorn of jargon. Clients demand it, and courts reward it. Despite the age-old tradition of poor writing in law, Legal Writing in Plain English shows how legal writers can unshackle themselves.

Legal Writing in Plain English includes:

*Tips on generating thoughts, organizing them, and creating outlines.
*Sound advice on expressing your ideas clearly and powerfully.
*Dozens of real-life writing examples to illustrate writing problems and solutions.
*Exercises to reinforce principles of good writing (also available on the Internet).
*Helpful guidance on page layout.
*A punctuation guide that shows the correct uses of every punctuation mark.
*Model legal documents that demonstrate the power of plain English.

Wounded Innocents
By Richard Wexler

From Publishers Weekly:
"The war against child abuse has become a war against children," charges Wexler, a reporter for the Albany, N.Y., Times Union , in a well-argued, in-depth study of the "child protection system" in the U.S. and the politics that enmesh it. He maintains that even more alarming than the alleged abuses suffered by children at the hands of their parents are the disruption of home life and the long-lasting trauma of minors assigned to institutions and foster homes that are either as bad as or worse than their own families. He asserts also that "witch-hunts" of foster parents suspected of improper conduct and harried supporting care system administrators, at times involving false accusations of sexual abuse, are all too common. While crediting competent, dedicated caseworkers who struggle in an overloaded welfare system, Wexler deplores what he considers misleading statistics and the presumption of parental guilt that underlie much child protection work. Preventive programs, legal measures and financial incentives meant to preserve original families figure in his detailed recommendations for reform.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Child Welfare Services Out of Control
By Brenda Scott

An Amazon reviewer wrote: "If you have children this book may save your family. This book may change the way you deal with your family doctor, your child's school, and who you allow into your home. No, I am not paranoid, but there are too many cases documented here of individual rights being trampled, due process ignored, and families destroyed by bureaucracies that are not concerned with what is just. You may also be left with a cynical view of our adversarial legal system -family services workers assert that 'a declaration of innocence is a sign of guilt'. Let's just bind their hands and throw them in the river -you know the rest."

"Left unanswered is the secondary question of how family services organizations became dominated by so many wrong-headed people, and how our tax money came to fund them. Are they really so deluded that they think they are doing good, or is there a New World political agenda driving them? Why do prosecutors go along with them? Why do police departments make arrests based on little or no evidence? There are a few good people in these organizations but I am afraid they have been intimidated into silence. Fixing this problem will take politicians willing to fight the tide of it-takes-a-village political correctness. How did it ever get this bad?"

Protecting Children From Child Protective Services
By Alan L. Schwartz

Schwartz's observations about child welfare and the harm it does to about thirty percent of the children involved are a helpful and needed contribution to what is published about CPS agencies and colluding professionals as they exist today.

Two energetic, enterprising young women from the East Coast, sent to the remote Klamath River Valley to live with the Karuks, produced this fascinating record of life in our valley in 1908-09.

Stella Patterson, a city lady at age 80, told by her doctor she had "young legs" vowed to spend one full year on her remote mountain mining claim.

A reviewer on Amazon wrote: "I first purchased this book while on a vacation trip exactly 14 years ago (1989); since then I've tried to read it at least once a year. I laugh my way through the book, and the author's courage & zest for life continues to inspire me! I only hope I am able to always view life with the same gusto & joy she had, trials & tribulations notwithstanding. She was quite a remarkable woman."

Visit the remote Northern California region from the Siskiyous to the Cascades. Meet the locals, learn the history, enjoy the landscape that includes whitewater rivers, old growth forests, and lava-strewn backcountry.

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