Friday, February 4, 2011

Patt Morrison for Monday, February 7, 2011


Monday, February 7, 2011

1-3 p.m.





1:06 – 1:39




1:41 – 1:58:30

Prison inmates await Verizon iPhone, or why it’s so hard to get cell phones out of prisons

Prison guards are the main source of the smuggled cell phones that allow California inmates to run crime rings from behind bars. The phones fetch about $1,000 a piece and there are tall tales of prison guards raking in $150,000 on the side. The problem is that guards, unlike visitors, aren’t required to pass through metal detectors on their way to work. Requiring them to do so, however, would necessitate paying them millions of more dollars in overtime.  That’s because the contract with the California Correctional Peace Officers Association (CCPOA), which represents about half of all prison employees, requires corrections officers to be paid for the time it takes them to enter the prison and walk to their posts behind prison walls, and installing metal detectors along the route could double the walk time. Last week State Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) introduced Senate Bill 26, which would impose a $5,000 fine for smugglers and inmates found with phones, but similar bills have failed, the prisons continue to receive a large portion of the state budget and Governor Brown’s office hasn’t revealed any intentions to act.  Why is it so hard to ban cell phones from prisons? Patt hears from the senator as well as the CCPOA.



Alex Padilla, State Senator (D-Pacoima) and author of SB 26, which would impose a $5,000 fine for smugglers and inmates found with phones



TBD Representative of the California Correctional Peace Officers Association




2:06 – 2:30

LAPD gang units refuse to fly the colors of their financial information

It’s been an impressive run for the gang units of the Los Angeles Police Department:  Gang-related murders and aggravated assaults in Los Angeles dropped by 30 percent from 2007-2010 and there has been unprecedented cooperation between gang officers and the street gangs they monitor.  But all is not well in the LAPD’s gang units:  the squads will be losing 25 percent of their officers because they refuse to disclose their personal assets and debt. After the Rampart corruption scandal in 1997, in which an LAPD officer masterminded a robbery, the U.S. Department of Justice required financial transparency of members of the police force in order to prevent future corruption. The city’s gang units focus exclusively on gang activity, even though they ride in black & white vehicles. However, they confiscate cash and drugs on a regular basis. Younger police officers are reluctant to replace the veteran members of the gang unit who refuse to hand over their personal finances, setting up a stand-off between public safety and personal privacy.



Deputy Chief Patrick Gannon, LAPD South Bureau, which  oversees operations in Harbor, 77th Street, Southeast and Southwest, as well as the South Traffic Division.



  • South Bureau has a population of roughly 640,000 people and encompasses 57.6 square miles.
  • Includes such well-known Los Angeles landmarks as USC, Watts Towers, the Harbor Gateway, the Port of Los Angeles and the Exposition Park Museums.


Paul Weber, President of the Los Angeles Police Protective League



Celeste Fremon, creator and editor of WitnessLA, an online source for daily coverage of social justice news, and a senior fellow for social justice and new media at the Institute for Justice and Journalism,.




2:30 – 2:39




2:41 – 2:58:30

How We Age: A Doctor's Journey into the Heart of Growing Old

Aging-it's the part of life that our society has come to dread more than the end of life itself.  With that backdrop, Marc Agronin goes into the Miami Jewish Health Systems nursing home and comes out with a much different notion of what it is to age.  Agronin interviews countless residents at the home about their personal experiences of aging.  These conversations, along with interviews he has with pioneers in the field, lead Agronin to a new, multi-layered understanding of aging-one that includes hopes, growth, vitality, creativity, and wisdom.



Dr. Marc Agronin, (MD) psychiatrist at the Miami Jewish Health Systems and author of How We Age: A Doctor's Journey into the Heart of Growing Old.




Jonathan Serviss
Senior Producer, Patt Morrison
Southern California Public Radio
NPR Affiliate for Los Angeles
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