NEWS of the Day - April 15, 2012
on some NAACC / LACP issues of interest

NEWS of the Day - April 15, 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 Google News

Trayvon Martin focus overshadowing other killings: NRA chief

A top executive of the largest U.S. advocacy group for gun owners said on Saturday that media attention on the Trayvon Martin killing in Florida has unfairly overshadowed a daily stream of other killings in cities across the country.

Speaking at the National Rifle Association's annual meeting, NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre criticized media coverage of the shooting of the teenager by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman, and coverage of gun issues in general.

"In the aftermath of one of Florida's many daily tragedies, my phone has been ringing off the hook," he said, referring to the Martin case and national media inquiries.

"The National Rifle Association will not comment on any story without a full understanding ... of all the facts," LaPierre said.

He then listed several killings in cities across the country, including one in St. Louis this week that he said have been ignored as the media focused on the Martin case.

"You reporters, you don't care about those people," he said of the other victims.

The Trayvon Martin case has focused national attention on so-called "Stand Your Ground" laws in a number of states that provide broader grounds to claim a shooting was in self-defense.

Police in Florida initially declined to arrest Zimmerman, citing the state's law allowing the use of deadly force when a person feels threatened. A special prosecutor earlier this week charged Zimmerman with second-degree murder.

The NRA has been the chief backer of Stand Your Ground laws. Versions of these laws, also referred to as the "Castle Doctrine" because they allow citizens to use force protect their homes, are in effect in 30 states including Florida.

At the NRA annual meeting on Saturday, the organization celebrated its success in passing the laws, showing a video to the membership of a young mother in Oklahoma, Sarah McKinley, who shot dead a knife-wielding home invader on New Year's Eve.

Authorities decided not to charge her, citing the state's law allowing the use of force in self defense.

"We always as members of the NRA Stand our Ground," LaPierre said.



From ICE

Authorities dismantle 2 major Los Angeles-area drug labs
More than 160 pounds of methamphetamine seized

LOS ANGELES Federal and local investigators took one suspect into custody and seized more than 160 pounds of methamphetamine late Wednesday night following the discovery of two large-scale drug labs in separate residences in Van Nuys and Pomona.

The enforcement action is the result of an ongoing probe spearheaded by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in close collaboration with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the El Monte and Santa Monica police departments.

After obtaining state search warrants, investigators entered the unoccupied residences and found supplies of a chemical commonly used to refine methamphetamine, along with drying equipment, scales and packaging materials. It took specially-trained officers with LA IMPACT's Clandestine Lab Team until late Thursday to dismantle both operations and remove any hazardous materials.

"Drug making operations like this are a major public safety menace," said Claude Arnold, special agent in charge for HSI Los Angeles. "First, stockpiling volatile chemicals in residential areas is a disaster waiting to happen. Then there's the threat posed by the meth itself. We've all seen how quickly this drug can destroy lives once users become caught in its powerful grip."

The drug labs were discovered after investigators stopped and questioned Alan Tamayo-Montoya, 25, a Mexican national suspected of serving as a runner for a methamphetamine trafficking ring. Tamayo was taken into custody in a Van Nuys mall parking lot. He was subsequently booked into the El Monte City Jail where he is being held on $2 million bond. Tamayo is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Los Angeles Criminal Court for possession of methamphetamine for sale.

"Over the past year, we have started to see an increasing number of drug labs in our area," said Briane M. Grey, DEA acting special agent in charge in Los Angeles. "By joining with our federal, state and local law enforcement partners, we will continue to identify and dismantle those threatening our communities with poisonous labs and drugs."

Investigators conservatively estimate the wholesale value of the seized methamphetamine at close to $2 million. The street value, though difficult to calculate precisely, would be at least three times that amount.