NEWS of the Day - January 2, 2012
on some NAACC / LACP issues of interest


NEWS of the Day - January 2, 2012
on some issues of interest to the community policing and neighborhood activist across the country

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following group of articles from local newspapers and other sources constitutes but a small percentage of the information available to the community policing and neighborhood activist public. It is by no means meant to cover every possible issue of interest, nor is it meant to convey any particular point of view ...

We present this simply as a convenience to our readership ...


From Los Angeles Times



McManus: Even despots don't live forever

Three villains — Osama bin Laden, Moammar Kadafi and Kim Jong Il — are gone.

by Doyle McManus

It was a bad year for the villains of the world.

Three of the biggest bad guys met their ends: Osama bin Laden, killed by U.S. commandos who stormed his villa in Pakistan in May; Moammar Kadafi, killed by Libyan insurgents who captured him (with the help of a NATO airstrike) in October; and Kim Jong Il, the ruler of North Korea, who died Dec. 17, reportedly of a heart attack.

Bin Laden was the most important. Americans remember him, of course, as the architect of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. But his larger achievement was in organizing Al Qaeda, a multinational movement whose purpose was to focus its violence not on local issues — plenty of terrorist groups do that — but on the distant United States. That innovation will guarantee him a place in history. "It is fair to say," former CIA analyst Michael Scheuer wrote in his biography of Bin Laden, "that he has had a greater impact on how Americans view their society, government and security than any other individual in the past 50 years."

But by the time the Navy caught up with Bin Laden, relentless U.S. attacks had reduced the "core" of Al Qaeda to only a few high-value targets, most of them in hiding. True, the organization had atomized successfully into franchise operations in Yemen, Somalia and North Africa, but the local groups quickly got caught up in local politics and lost their focus on attacks against the U.S. That caused distress to the founder, who sent letters urging his affiliates to get back to killing Americans. With Bin Laden gone, Al Qaeda isn't over, but it's a much smaller threat to us now.

The second of the three despots who left us in 2011 — Kadafi — was known by the end of his career more for his flamboyantly theatrical uniforms and his onetime crush on Condoleezza Rice than for being a global threat. But Kadafi was once one of the world's top terrorists, instigator of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 that killed 270. And he ruled his fellow Libyans with an arbitrary brutality exceeded by few others.

The dictator met his end because of a bigger trend, the wave of democratic enthusiasm sweeping the Arab world. Libyans saw autocrats fall in two neighboring countries, Egypt and Tunisia, and decided they could change their circumstances too. Even with considerable help from NATO, it took the rebels six months to take the capital of Tripoli, and two more to capture Kadafi. His end was ugly and ignominious; he appears to have been tortured and shot by the insurgents who found him.

Kim Jong Il, by contrast, died without violence at the end of a 16-year reign over the world's last hermetically-sealed communist dictatorship, a regime that ruined its own economy but protected itself with nuclear weapons and an alliance with neighboring China.

By the narrowest standard of authoritarian regimes, self-preservation, Kim's tenure was a success. He passed power on to his 28-year-old son, Kim Jong Un, who will rule together with his aunt, his uncle and a collection of wizened generals.

But the stability may be illusory. The North Korean dynasty's first leader, Kim Il Sung, was proclaimed "Great Leader," and Kim Jong Il was known as "Dear Leader." But young Kim Jong Un has been named only the "Great Successor" — a title that, by comparison, feels a little tentative.

Kim Jong Il's death was peaceful, but it was a warning its own way: Even the best-managed tyranny can't escape the limits of biology. The North Korean regime won't last forever, any more than its leader could.

Are there any villains left to loathe or fear? Plenty, alas. Kim Jong Un and his relatives don't look like much of an improvement on Kim Jong Il. Syria is still ruled by Bashar Assad, although his regime is weakening by the day. Sudan's Omar Hassan Ahmed Bashir has waged war against much of his own country. Iran's Ali Khamenei has presided over merciless repression against his nation's democratic movement. And Russia's Vladimir Putin appears bent on returning his country to a modernized version of its bad old days.

But they read the obituaries too. They know that they won't be around forever, and that if they play their cards badly, their ends could be unpleasant. In 2012, the world's tyrants and dictators are sleeping a little less comfortably than they did a year ago. And that, in its own way, is good news.



New laws crack down on distracted drivers

U.S. and state regulations seek to curb drivers' use of cellphones, and some states target driving under the influence.

by Stephen Ceasar, Los Angeles Times

January 1, 2012

If your New Year's resolutions didn't include hanging up that cellphone when behind the wheel, several states plan to do it for you. A slew of new laws taking effect this year aims to curb distracted driving.

Beginning Tuesday, all commercial drivers — including truck and bus drivers — are banned from using hand-held and push-to-talk cellphones.

The new law will affect an estimated 4 million commercial drivers, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, which instituted the ban.

New automotive laws are taking effect in a variety of states too.

In Nevada, those who violate a 3-month-old law that bans texting while driving will receive tickets instead of warnings; a grace period for residents to familiarize themselves with the new law had ended as of Sunday. Authorities in Pennsylvania will begin enforcing a similar ban in March.

In Oregon, a loophole will be closed in the state's ban on using cellphones while driving.

A portion of the law allowed a driver to use a cellphone if it "is necessary for the person's job." Intended to exempt law enforcement and emergency workers, the provision also allowed some motorists to have their citations dismissed by claiming they were using the phone for work.

The new law allows only emergency responders and roadside assistance workers to use hand-held cellphones. All drivers can use hands-free devices.

The National Transportation Safety Board last month called for a nationwide ban on drivers' use of portable electronic devices. The agency urged states to ban the nonemergency use of hands-free devices as well as hand-held cellphones.

NTSB Chairwoman Debbie Hersman, speaking at an agency board meeting in December, said the exponential growth of cellphone use has made distracted driving a rapidly growing problem. In 2010, more than 3,000 people died in crashes believed to have been caused by distracted driving, according to the Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

"How many more lives will be lost before we, as a society, change our attitudes about the deadliness of distractions?" Hersman asked.

Under a new law in Illinois, all back-seat passengers will be required to wear seat belts, except those in taxis or emergency vehicles. If caught, passengers face fines beginning at $25.

Another new Illinois law permits school bus companies to require drivers whom they suspect of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol to submit to testing. If drivers fail the test, or refuse to take it, they can lose their school bus permit for three years.

In California, children will be required to use a car seat until they are 8 years old or at least 4 feet, 9 inches tall. The previous law required children to use car seats until they were 6 years old or weighed 60 pounds. Fines for violations begin at $475.

In Oregon, anyone convicted of drunk driving — including first offenders — will be required to install an ignition interlock in their cars. The devices check the driver's blood alcohol level before the engine will start and keep checking it, at random, for the engine to keep running.

Oregon will also require engines in large commercial trucks to be turned off while idling to reduce air pollution.



LAPD: Keep lights on tonight as arson hunt intensifies

With nightfall approaching, Los Angeles authorities are urging residents to keep their outdoor lights on as police and fire officials try to catch the person or people responsible for nearly 40 arson fires in the last three days.

Officials on Sunday urged residents leave porch and carport lights on at night and make sure cars are locked. They also urged residents to report anything suspicious to authorities by calling 911.

Officials said Sunday that they have linked at least 39 fires to a series of arsons that began Friday morning in Hollywood. Most of the fires have occurred in the Hollywood and West Hollywood area, but detectives are not sure whether the arsonist or arsonists would venture into other neighborhoods. On Saturday morning, several locations in the San Fernando Valley were hit.

At a news conference Sunday morning, officials said many of the fires have been started in cars and in some cases spread to carports, garages and apartments.

But they declined to say what evidence tied the cases together or to give more information about how the fires were set. Law enforcement sources told The Times that detectives are concerned that releasing more information could prompt the arsonist or arsonists to change tactics and encourage copycats.

The sources said there was evidence connecting most of the fires. But investigators don't want to say what kind of fuel or ignition device was used, said the sources, who spoke on the condition of annoymity because the case was still ongoing.

One fire Saturday was caught on video at the Hollywood & Highland entertainment complex on Hollywood Boulevard.

Firefighters responded about 7 p.m. to a report that a car in a parking structure was on fire, said Los Angeles Fire Department Capt. Brian Humphrey. By the time they arrived, the fire was out, Humphrey said.

MAP: Arson fires

But a suspect's image may have been captured on one of the structure's video cameras; police were broadcasting a description of a white male in his mid-30s with a receding hairline and a ponytail.

Also on Saturday, Los Angeles County firefighters were called to the 1000 block of North Sweetzer Avenue in West Hollywood about 8:30 p.m. They found an apartment house carport with two vehicles on fire and spent 25 minutes dousing the flames, said Don Kunitomi, an on-scene fire inspector.

FULL COVERAGE: Arson fires

"We're pulling out all the stops," Humphrey said in describing the investigation. "We're hoping that the person or people responsible will be brought to swift and complete justice."



Photos show 'person of interest' in Los Angeles fires

(Video and pictures on site)

The Los Angeles Police Department asked for the public's help Sunday in identifying a "person of interest" in the series of fires in the Hollywood area.

The still images taken from a video show an older white male with a receding hairline and shoulder-length ponytail. He is wearing a black jacket and black pants. His image was caught on a video that showed a car fire Saturday night inside the parking structure of the Hollywood & Highland Center on Hollywood Boulevard.

The LAPD asks residents to leave porch and carport lights on at night and make sure cars are locked. Authorities also ask residents to immediately report anything suspicious by calling 911. Officials said Sunday that they have connected at least 39 fires, the first of which started early Friday morning in Hollywood. Most of the fires have occurred in the Hollywood and West Hollywood areas. Early Saturday, nearly a dozen fires broke out in the northeast San Fernando Valley.




Helping L.A.'s foster kids grow up

A new California law will allow young people to receive support until the age of 21, rather than forcing them to fend for themselves at 18.

by Thomas Byrne, Dennis Culhane and Stephen Metraux

January 2, 2012

The average young person who "ages out" of the foster care system in Los Angeles County at age 18 goes on to use almost $13,000 worth of health, mental health, criminal justice and social services before his or her 22nd birthday. That is more than two years' worth of college tuition in the Cal State University system. For former foster youth who also have had involvement in the juvenile justice system — so-called crossover youth — the amount is almost three times as high, about $35,000.

These are among the starker findings from our recently completed study of outcomes for those who exited the foster care and juvenile justice systems in Los Angeles County during their young adult years. These findings highlight the economic and social hardships that many former foster youth face as they transition to adulthood, and might be cause for pessimism. But there are strong reasons to be optimistic.

One of those reasons is the California Fostering Connections to Success Act, which takes effect Jan. 1. This state law, once it's phased in over a three-year period, will allow young people to continue receiving the support of the foster care system until the age of 21, rather than forcing them to fend for themselves at 18. This change is long overdue and will help place the 5,000 foster youth who age out of care each year in California on more equal footing with their peers.

They will finally benefit from the type of financial and social support that most of their peers receive from their families during young adulthood. Indeed, American parents offer "total material assistance" averaging about $40,000 for each child between the ages of 18 and 34, according to researchers at the University of Michigan.

However, to ensure that the funds behind the new law are leveraged to their full potential, more needs to be done to figure out what types of assistance work best for which types of youth.

For example, roughly half of former foster youth enroll in community college, but less than 5% complete a degree. Special on-campus programs might help more of them complete their degree programs. Or, intensive support services might be targeted toward promoting better outcomes for the one-quarter of crossover youth who receive treatment for a serious mental illness. Similarly, housing subsidies tied to participation in employment or educational programs might help more of these young people achieve self-sufficiency and avoid homelessness.

Los Angeles County is uniquely situated to be a national leader for developing innovative programs to help ensure successful adult outcomes for foster youth. It is one of only a handful of communities nationwide that has a system in place that enables county officials to link health, mental health, criminal justice, social service and education records. This system enabled us to complete our study, but it has a potentially more valuable use. The county could use it to quickly determine which programs for foster youth are effective and expand them or refine them. For example, the county could evaluate whether providing an array of intensive support services to crossover youth was successful in preventing adverse outcomes such as jail stays or inpatient hospitalizations.

If successful, programs that provide additional supports to foster youth are likely to generate substantial economic benefits, both for the young people and for the public purse. Having more foster youth excelling in the college classroom, on the job and in their own homes means that fewer will be filling jail cells, hospital beds and shelters. This will free up much-needed public resources for other uses.

California should make the most of the opportunity provided by this new legislation. Not only is it a chance to take an important step toward fulfilling a moral obligation to these vulnerable youth, but it offers the potential to do so through sound public policy.

Thomas Byrne, Dennis Culhane and Stephen Metraux are researchers at the University of Pennsylvania. Their report on outcomes for L.A. County foster youth can be found at http://www.hiltonfoundation.org.



From Google News


Mt. Rainier Ranger Shot to Death, Gunman Sought



Tactical teams searched Mount Rainier National Park's snowy terrain for an armed gunman suspected of killing a park ranger. Other officers used the cover of darkness early Monday to evacuate dozens of tourists who had been kept for their safety at a visitors center.

About 150 officers converged on the mountain park after ranger Margaret Anderson was shot to death Sunday morning, and searchers used an aircraft with heat-sensing capabilities to hunt from the skies.

Authorities believe the gunman was still in the woods, with weapons.

Pierce County Sheriff's spokesman Ed Troyer said that Benjamin Colton Barnes, a 24-year-old believed to have survivalist skills, was a "strong person of interest" in the slaying.

"We do have a very hot and dangerous situation," Troyer said.

Safety concerns prompted authorities to keep about 125 tourists quarantined at a visitors center as the manhunt unfolded.

But early Monday morning, officers began escorting them in their cars out of the park.

Crews had initially planned to keep everyone in a basement with guards. But Troyer said it was determined to be "better to do it (evacuate) under the cover of darkness than daylight."

All the visitors were expected to be out by 4 a.m.

Evacuee Dinh Jackson, a mother from Olympia, Wash., who came to the mountain to sled with family and friends, told The Associated Press that officials ordered people to hurry into the lodge after the shooting.

Jackson said officials had everyone get on their knees and place hands behind their heads as they went through the building, looking at faces to make sure the gunman was not among them.

"That was scary for the kids," she said.

Michael Wall, an elementary school teacher from Puyallup, Wash., spent the morning hiking with his son. They didn't find out about the violence until returning.

Wall said he was impressed by how staff members and visitors kept each other comfortable with food and conversation.

"It was calm, cool, easygoing," Wall said. "I didn't notice any tenseness or terseness."

A parks spokesman said Barnes was an Iraq war veteran, and the mother of his child had alleged he suffered from post-traumatic stress following his deployments.

Barnes was involved in a custody dispute in Tacoma in July 2011, during which the toddler's mother sought a temporary restraining order against him, according to court documents. In an affidavit, the woman wrote that Barnes was suicidal and possibly suffered from PTSD after deploying to Iraq in 2007-2008. She said he gets easily irritated, angry and depressed and keeps an arsenal of weapons in his home.

Barnes was also a suspect in the early Sunday morning shooting of four people at a house party south of Seattle, police said.

Sgt. Cindi West, King County Sheriff's spokesperson, said late Sunday that Barnes was connected to an early-morning shooting at a New Year's house party in Skyway, Wash., south of Seattle that left four people injured, two critically. That incident happened about 3 a.m., and stemmed from an argument over a gun.

West said three people fled the scene. Two were located, and West said authorities were trying to find Barnes and had been in contact with his family, trying to have them convince him to "come to the police and tell his side of the story" in the Skyway shooting.

At Mount Rainier around 10:20 a.m. Sunday, Bacher said the gunman had sped past a checkpoint to make sure vehicles have tire chains, which are sometimes necessary in snowy conditions. One ranger began following him while Anderson, a 34-year-old mother of two young children who was married to another Mount Rainier park ranger, eventually blocked the road to stop the driver.

Before fleeing, the gunman fired shots at both Anderson and the ranger that trailed him, but only Anderson was hit, Bacher said. Anderson would've been armed, as she was one of the rangers tasked with law enforcement, Bacher said. Troyer said she was shot before she had even exited the vehicle.

About 150 officers, including officials from the Washington State Patrol, U.S. Forest Service and FBI, were on the mountain.

Tactical responders wearing crampons and snowshoes pursued what appeared to be the gunman's tracks in the snow, Troyer said. Those tracks went into creeks and other waterways, making it more difficult for crews to follow.

"He's intentionally trying to get out of the snow," Troyer said.

Authorities recovered his vehicle, which had weapons and body armor inside, Troyer said.

A SWAT team was able to remove Anderson's body from the mountain late Sunday night, with a procession of law enforcement vehicles escorting her remains away.

The park would remain closed Monday, officials announced late Sunday.

Park superintendent Randy King said Anderson had served as a park ranger for about four years. King said Anderson's husband also was working as a ranger elsewhere in the park at the time of the shooting.

"It's just a huge tragedy — for the family, the park and the park service," he said.

Adam Norton, a neighbor of Anderson's in the small town of Eatonville, Wash., said the ranger's family moved in about a year ago. He said they were not around much, but when they were Norton would see Anderson outside with her girls.

"They just seemed like the perfect family," he said.

The town of about 3,000 residents, which is a logging community overlooking Mount Rainier, is very close knit, he said.

"It's really sad right now," Norton said. "We take care of each other."

It has been legal for people to take loaded firearms into Mount Rainier since 2010, when a controversial federal law went into effect that made possession of firearms in national parks subject to state gun laws.

The shooting occurred on an unseasonably sunny and mild day. The park, which offers miles of wooded trails and spectacular vistas from which to see 14,410-foot Mount Rainier, draws between 1.5 million and 2 million visitors each year.

The Longmire station served as headquarters when the national park was established in 1899. Park headquarters have moved but the site still contains a museum, a hotel, restaurant and gift shop, which are open year-round.



Four Attacks in Queens With Homemade Firebombs


A wave of arson attacks spread across eastern Queens on Sunday night, and the police said the firebombings were being investigated as bias crimes — with Muslims as the targets.

No one was hurt in the four attacks, in which homemade firebombs were apparently used. In three of the four attacks, the police said, Molotov cocktails were made with Starbucks bottles.

The first attack occurred just before 8 p.m. at a bodega at 179-40 Hillside Avenue.

Ten minutes later, another crude firebomb was thrown, this time at a private home at 146-62 107th Avenue, and the house caught fire.

Half an hour after that, an Islamic center at 89-89 Van Wyck Expressway was the target. The last attack occurred at a house at 88-20 170th Street, the police said.

The Islamic center, the Imam Al-Khoei Foundation, houses one of the most prominent Shiite mosques in New York. According to its Web site it offers funeral services, counseling and free SAT classes. It lists branches in several cities, including Montreal and Islamabad, Pakistan. Calls to the foundation were not returned Sunday night.

The firebomb, made with a glass Starbucks bottle, was thrown at the door of the center, possibly from a van as it drove it by, the police said. The door was blackened, but the building did not catch fire.

A similar weapon was found at the bodega, the site of the first attack, according to the police. The bomb might have been thrown from inside the store, because the counter sustained some damage, the police said.

It was the second attack, on 107th Avenue, police and fire officials said, that caused the most damage.

Shortly after 8 p.m., someone called 911, saying that a Molotov cocktail had been thrown at their home. The house caught fire, and it took more than 60 firefighters about 40 minutes to bring it under control.

In the fourth attack, two bottles were thrown at the house on 170th Street. A spokesman for the Fire Department said that the person who called 911 said they saw a vehicle drive by as the bottles were hurled toward their home. But the flames quickly fizzled.



Passer-by shoots out window to help rescue children from icy river crash

Rescuer told himself 'You're going to see some dead kids, get ready' but two lifeless kids were revived on river bank to cheers, clapping

Former police officer Chris Willden didn't hesitate when he realized children were trapped in an upside down car in an icy Utah river. He pulled his handgun, pushed it up against the submerged windows and shot out the glass.

Then he reached inside.

"I was trying to grab arms, but I couldn't feel anything," Willden said. "I'm thinking ... what are we going to do?'"

But he turned to see up to eight other passers-by had scrambled down the embankment to help after coming upon the accident along U.S. 89 in Logan Canyon on Saturday afternoon.

Highway Patrol Lt. Steve Winward said that after shooting out a window, Willden cut a seatbelt to free one child.

He said the rescuers then helped turn the Honda Accord upright in the Logan River, and lifted it enough to free all three trapped children.

The driver of the Honda Accord had lost control of the car as he tried to brake while heading northbound in slippery conditions.

The Herald Journal News named the driver as Roger Andersen, 46, of Logan, and the trapped occupants as his children Mia, 9, and Baylor, 4. The other occupant, 9-year-old Kenya Wildman, is a family friend.

The group was driving to Beaver Mountain for a day of skiing, it reported.

"(The driver) was panicked, doing everything he could to get in through the doors, but they wouldn't budge," said Willden, who had jumped into the water with his own father.

"I remember thinking to myself, 'You're going to see some dead kids, get ready.' I've got three of my own and it was going to be (an awful) start to the New Year," he added.

Willden said he tried unsuccessfully to open windows and doors. He then used his firearm just as he had done in training for his current job as a bodyguard and Department of Defense contractor.

One of the girls had found an air pocket and was breathing fine, but was trapped in her seat belt. Willden cut it with a pocket knife and pulled her from the rear passenger window.

He said the other two children were lifeless, the boy upside down in his car seat and the second girl floating in the front passenger compartment. Both were pulled from the vehicle.

'Started to breathe'

Buzzy Mullahkel, of North Logan, told the Deseret News of Salt Lake City that the boy wasn't breathing and didn't have a pulse, but was revived when another passer-by performed CPR.

"Emotions started taking over when he started to breathe. Everybody started to cheer. Lots of tears and clapping," said Mullahkel, a father of a 4-year-old.

Willden, 35, of Ogden, was wrapping up his bleeding forearms cut by the broken window when he heard cheers.

"That was awesome," he said. "I knew that's where the little boy was."

He would later learn both the boy and his sister, who were flown by air ambulance to Primary Children's Medical Center in Salt Lake City, had survived.

Bonnie Midget, a hospital spokeswoman, said Sunday both are doing well after spending the night in intensive care.

They were taken out of intensive care Sunday but still in the hospital, listed in fair condition as they recover from hypothermia. Winward said the father and the second girl escaped injury.

Willden noted that both he and his father are both former military/civilian police officers, while his sister and mother are emergency medical technicians.

"It's in our family to go out and help others," he said.



Bahrain will recruit 500 for community policing Sua Hamada

January 2, 2012

MANAMA - The new chief of Public Security called on Sunday for a fresh start in Bahrain, announcing a new push on improving community policing throughout the country.

In a special New Year message marking his appointment, Major-General Tariq Alhassan announced that 500 extra officers would be recruited from all sections of Bahrain society to boost community relations. The officers will wear distinctive uniforms and only police the local area from where they have been recruited.

“The task now after the report of the Bahrain Independent commission for Inquiry (BICI) is to look at where we've gone wrong, to face our mistakes and learn lessons,” Alhassan said.

“The first part is to reinforce our relationship with the community and also enhance our performance and capabilities with training. We're going to find 500 men and women from all local communities in Bahrain to reinforce our community service police and they will be our conduit with the community as well.” He added: “There must be soft policing as well as hard policing.”

The new police chief said that “significant progress” had already been made on implementing the BICI recommendations, including referring officers accused of abuse to public prosecutors. “I am determined to make people understand that we have a responsibility to ensure that whoever breaks the law will be held accountable, whether it is a private citizen or a policeman,” he added.

Overall, he said he was hopeful about the coming year: “I look at it very positively. On the surface it might look very difficult, but I think many people have realised that there is a democracy in Bahrain — maybe not the same as the UK or US — but there is a process. And I think people need to engage and His Majesty the King has shown us more than once that he is willing to listen, he doesn't shut the door on anyone,” he said.



CERT Classes To Be Offered February In SCV

Santa Clarita area residents interested in learning more about protecting themselves and their community will have an opportunity to get involved in the Community Emergency Response Team program with classes being held starting February 6 in the SCV.

Class schedules are posted and available for enrollment online at the California Regional Community Policing Institute website at www.rcpi-ca.org. The CERT program is an all-risk, all-hazard training. This valuable course is designed to help you protect yourself, your family, your neighbors and your neighborhood in an emergency situation.

CERT is a positive and realistic approach to emergency and disaster situations where citizens may initially be on their own and their actions can make a difference. While people will respond to others in need without the training, one goal of the CERT program is to help them do so effectively and efficiently without placing themselves in unnecessary danger. In the CERT training, citizens learn to:

• Manage utilities and put out small fires

• Treat the three medical killers by opening airways, controlling bleeding, and treating for shock

• Provide basic medical aid

• Search for and rescue victims safely

• Organize themselves and spontaneous volunteers to be effective

• Collect disaster intelligence to support first responder efforts

All classes must be attended to receive a course certificate.

Students enrolled in other government-sponsored CERT classes can attend any of the scheduled training modules to complete the course. Please refer to the course schedule online or email cert@lasd.org . This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it so we can assure you can attend the correct location and time to assure your course completion.

The basic CERT course provided by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is the latest updated course curriculum provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Emergency Management Institute.