The Truth About Criminal Threats

The Truth About Criminal Threats

The Truth About Criminal Threats

Threats are a part of life, a knee jerk reaction to anger, hurt feelings, and fear. Most people make threats without any intention of ever carrying them out. However, in this current world where school shootings and other heinous acts seem to be a weekly occurrence, people and members of the law enforcement community are taking threats more seriously than ever before.

Threats made on school grounds or that include a school system tend to be the first ones that law enforcement crack down on.

In these instances, law enforcement act first and ask questions later. A perfect example of this is a recent situation where a few students had a conversation about their desire to shoot up at their school in Los Angeles was overheard. The students had barely finished their conversation when police arrived on the scene and arrested both students. The charge was making criminal threats.

This type of thing is happening all over the country.

There aren’t any statistics outlining how many of the students who are charged with making criminal threats are actually doing nothing more than blowing off steam, but if the police and media are to be believed, for the most part, this is a situation of where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Police report that in many instances, after arresting a student for making criminal threats, they discover that the student was in possession of an alarming amount of firepower. An example of this is the arrest of a 17-year-old L.A. student who was arrested. When the police investigated the student’s home, they not only found 90-high-capacity magazines, but also 2 assault weapons as well as some handguns.

In California, the law is clear when it comes to making criminal threats.

California Penal Code Section 422 clearly states that making any type of verbal or written threat of death or bodily injury to another person is against the law. Comments posted on social media sites count as a written threat.

One interesting loophole In Penal Code Section 422 is that there’s no mention of gestures. At this point, this means that gestures that are symbolic to a gang or pointing a finger gun at someone doesn’t break the law. Whether or not gestures should constitute as a criminal threat was discussed in front of the California Supreme Court during the 2017 case, People v. Gonzalez. The court agreed with the defendant that gestures weren’t admissible in court. So far, the Penal Code hasn’t been amended to include the use of hand gestures as a criminal threat.

 

Keeping Cool In The Peak Of Summer

Keeping Cool In The Peak Of Summer

Keeping Cool In The Peak Of Summer

As the summer heat begins to grip the state of California, keeping cool is at the forefront of everyone’s minds. We all want to get out of the sun and find a nice air conditioned place to hide out. Luckily, California has plenty of options when it comes to keeping cool, you just need to know where to look.

When it comes to keeping cool, there are the obvious choices such as:

  • The beach
  • The pool
  • Water parks
  • Rivers
  • Lakes

However, since these options are well known, they are likely to be very crowded.

Some other options that might not be as obvious for keeping cool include:

  • Going to a movie theater
  • Going to a mall
  • Going to a library
  • Go to a museum
  • Going shopping anywhere that has AC

Most public places have air conditioning within their walls, making them good choices to visit during the peak of summer. Some will undoubtedly be more crowded than others, and it may take a bit of trial and error to find a place that works for you. Just don’t be afraid to go out there and find a fun, new way to keep cool.

Summer can be a lot of fun, provided you are able to stay cool. While hiding out in some shade, water, or air conditioned buildings will definitely help, it is also important to remember to drink plenty of water. The more you sweat, the more water your body is losing, which makes it very easy to become dehydrated during the summer months. If you are looking to cool off this summer, be sure to try out some places on this list that are near you, and be sure to stay hydrated as you do so.

 

The Call You Never Want To Make

The Call You Never Want To Make

The Call You Never Want To Make

Whenever you have to call 911, it’s never a good thing. No one ever calls 911 to celebrate a victory. When you call 911, it’s usually because things have taken a turn for the worst and the situation is out of your control.

When you dial 911, you aren’t just calling the police. You’re calling a dispatch for emergency services that include medical services. You should only call 911 for certain reasons. Blocking up the lines takes time away from dispatchers who could be helping another person with a dire emergency.

Reasons why you should call 911 can vary.

You should only call 911 when it is an emergency.

When you make a call to 911, be prepared to quickly give as accurate and direct information as you can. Remaining calm while talking to the dispatcher will also benefit you. Dispatchers are trained to remain calm since they deal with emergency calls all the time.

The following are reasons why you call 911:

  • Medical Emergency
  • Car Accident
  • House Fire
  • Wild Fire
  • Someone Collapses
  • Someone is Hurting Another
  • Someone is Breaking into a House

Reason why you shouldn’t call 911 can vary as well too. Tying up emergency services is a crime, and comes with serious consequences. When emergency services are tied up helping someone who doesn’t really need help, someone who actually does need assistance can suffer. If you continuously call 911 for non-emergency reasons you can expect to be fined.

The following are not reasons to call 911:

  • You have a doctor’s appointment and need a ride.
  • You locked yourself out of your car.
  • You need a ride to court.
  • You don’t feel like driving to the hospital.
  • You’re pulling a prank on a friend.

One more thing you need to remember is if you accidentally call 911, don’t hang up the phone. Stay on the line and let the dispatcher know. If you hang up the dispatcher will send emergency services to your location and you can then be charged for tying up emergency services. When you find yourself having to call 911 it can be pretty scary. Emergency services are one of those things in life that you are grateful for, but never want to use.

 

Passing Blame From Generation To Generation

Passing Blame From Generation To Generation

Passing Blame From Generation To Generation

How many times have you’ve heard the saying, “Back in my day…” Every time those words come out of someone’s mouth, a pair of eyes roll at the same time. What is happening is one generation is comparing their life experiences to another’s generation. Though people might not intend to be negative or condescending, people will mistake their words. Meanings are in people not words. This leads to a lot of misunderstandings between generations.

It is time to recognize the problem between generations. We all “inherit” the world that the previous generation left us. Previous generations will always have something to say about the next generation. Younger generations will feel like older generations don’t understand them. What we sometimes fail to grasp is generations don’t always define all of us equally.

Generations are simply a time period with events that could have affected a group of people.

Generations are likely to share some common experiences; however, there are always exceptions. They are like stereotypes.

Most people typically categorize individuals in the wrong generations. Dates of generations are approximate because there are no clear definitions for when a generation begins and ends. Some generational dates overlap because of the lack of clarity. These are generally the suggested years for generations:

  • Boomers: 1946-1964
  • Gen X: 1965-1979
  • Xennials: 1975-1985
  • Gen Y / Millennials: 1980-1994
  • Gen Z / iGen: 1995-2012
  • Gen Alpha: 2013 -2025

We need to go beyond the blame game between generations. We have a moral obligation as humans to help the next generations. Our moral duties need to extend passed the living generations, and on to the next that we may never get to witness. According to Immanuel Kant, a German philosopher, we are obligated to help and support the upcoming generations. Kant even believed that at some point, the older generations need to let the newer ones find their own way in the world. This implies that older generations need to accept the newer generation’s choices.

Imagine a world of support between generations, not comparisons.

Generations share events amongst themselves, but they also share it with other generations. For example the Twin Towers collapse. Baby Boomers remember watching it on the news or possibly seeing it happen in person. Baby Boomers weren’t the only generations to have seen it. Xennials, Gen Y, and parts of Gen Z also experienced it in different forms. That’s four generations that share the event. We all share more events like this, but with different perspectives. Often times, the gaps between generations aren’t all that big.

By continuing to hold grudges against other generations, a person can create animosity and discontent between generations. This can lead to people from both generations lashing out and causing trouble. If things escalate far enough, someone could end up in jail, or worse. To ensure everyone’s safety and general wellbeing, it is best to let go of the notion of generational gaps.

 

Did You Know About This Forgotten Right?

Did You Know About This Forgotten Right?

Did You Know About This Forgotten Right?

Many people are familiar with the First and Second Amendment to the US Constitution. However, this is like only reading the first paragraph of a book and saying you understand everything in between. We do this a lot in today’s society. We look for articles with catchy headlines and graze over them hoping to gain all the knowledge that is within the article in 15 seconds or less. We see or hear things in the news and react based off of that small sample. Most people just get information from secondary news sources rather than the primary source. Within this crazy world, we get so caught up in all the drama of the problems that we don’t focus on a solution. The solution is within the 15th Amendment.

If you don’t know what that is, it’s time to pull out your duplicate Constitution that you were given in grade school. The 15th Amendment outlines our right to vote. For women, the solution lies in the 19th Amendment, where women were granted the right to vote as well. Our right to vote is often understated and misjudged. People assume that our votes don’t matter, but they do.

California had the primary election in June 5th, and the final vote this November 6th. There are many things to vote for this year. For starters, this upcoming election we’ll be able to vote for a new Governor. Not only will we get to elect a new official, we can also vote on controversial topics like: bail reform, the 3 state initiative, gas taxes, and rent regulations. The ballot is still in the process of being formed. By the end of the summer, we will know what issues are going to be on the ballot.

If you feel empowered and want to make a difference, register to vote.

You need to be registered to vote at least 15 days before the election. Try not to put off registering to vote until last minute because if there is any issue you won’t be able to vote. There are several places where you can register to vote:

  • The Department of Motor Vehicles
  • Armed services recruitment centers
  • State and county public assistance offices (SNAP/food stamps, WIC, services for the disabled)
  • Post Offices
  • Online

It’s time to step up and exercise your right to vote. We weren’t given these rights to just ignore them. It’s time we put them to use. The world seems crazy and out of control, we can at least help reign in the California government. It’s time to not forget about the 15th Amendment.

 

Parole vs. Probation

Parole vs. Probation

Parole vs. Probation

There are many terms out there that most people mix up. Often times, these terms are closely related and describe similar, yet different, things. The terms are often used so closely together that people begin to assume they mean the same thing. A good example of this would the difference between parole and probation.

Just about everyone knows that these two terms have something to do with getting out of jail. However, that is usually the extent of most people’s knowledge on the matter. This is due to the fact that they would rather not spend time learning about terms they will likely never need to know about. Unfortunately for some, jail has a way of sneaking up on them. This makes it important to know the difference between these two terms.

Probation is often a replacement for a jail or prison sentence. A person is given probation by their case judge, and they have set of rules or conditions that they have to follow which vary from case to case. If they fail to follow those, then they will be taken into custody. However, if they follow all of the rules, then they can finish their sentence without ever setting foot in jail or prison.

Parole deals with a person who was recently released from prison. When a person is released from prison, they are not immediately free. They have to go through a sort of trial period, which is what parole is. The person has to prove they are rehabilitated by meeting certain conditions while out on their own. The person is assigned a parole officer that they have to meet with on a regular basis.

It is easy to see that while these two terms are similar, they are also very different. Probation is a way to stay out of jail or prison, while parole is what happens after a person is released from prison. Both, however, do require the person to be on their best behavior, or else they may end up behind bars.

 

Did You Think California’s Water Problems Were Over?

Did You Think California’s Water Problems Were Over?

Did You Think California’s Water Problems Were Over?

Californians love their water. They love their coasts and their rolling green mountains. They love the wildlife and wildflowers that come out in the spring. When the weather starts warming up, the moisture starts evaporating. Plants die out, and the green turns to brown. It’s at this point we start wondering, are we in a drought? Are we supposed to be this dry?

We just survived a very devastating drought, and for once we can move past it. The last few years in California we have watched lakes dry up, and desert color tones become more prominent. We’ve survived many bans on our water usage, and watched green lawns wither away. We’ve all prayed for rain and finally got some. For once we’re not in a crisis mode over water in California. However, we’re not out of the desert just yet.

Currently we’re not in a serve drought, but that doesn’t mean all of our water problems are gone.

Parts of California may not have any drought warnings, but some do. Most of the Central and Northern parts of the state are abnormally dry. When you look at Southern California, this is where you’ll find some extreme drought areas. However, most of the Southern parts of the state are just moderately in a drought. This means that even through some of us are wetter than we were, we still have a ways to go to be completely drought free.

The California climate is always changing. California has a long history of unpredictable weather. In some parts of the state you have a brisk cold mornings followed by triple digits heat by noon. The overall climate of California plays a large role in the drought. California’s climate usually has a dry season from mid-May to late September. Then the dry season is followed by the wet season. The different typography in California diversifies the climate and weather patterns making it more complicated to predict.

We love our water, so we should take care of it.

Californians have done well when it comes to preparing for the dry seasons. Through reservoirs and conversation we are able to survive the dry times. We are also able to survive extreme drought conditions. Even though we’re finally breaking free from the drought conditions, we still need to be mindful of our water usage and conserve as much as we can.

 

Using GPS In California Could Result In Legal Trouble

Using GPS In California Could Result In Legal Trouble

Using GPS In California Could Result In Legal Trouble

Very few of us even carry a map in the car with us. Why would we when GPS is so much more accurate and gives us directions while we actually drive. As wonderful as GPS devices are, if you’re driving in California and using one, you need to be careful.

Like most states, California has clear rules about doing things like calling a friend up while you’re driving or sending text messages. Getting caught doing either of those things can result in a hefty ticket. Until January 2017, GPS’s devices were different. You were free to key in all sorts of information into them even while you were zipping down the highway. That’s no longer the case.

In January 2017, laws about the legal use of GPS devices went into effect. The good news is that you’re still allowed to use you GPS unit, you just have to be careful.

Keep it Out of Your Hands

If an officer catches you holding a GPS device while you’re driving, they can and will pull you over and issue a ticket. Having it in your hands, whether it’s because you’re trying to read something on the screen or because you’re trying to enter an address into it is considered distracted driving. If you have to pick up the GPS device for some reason, pull off the road to do so.

Make Sure It’s Swipeable

The one time you are allowed to touch your GPS is when you’re turning the unit on or off, provided you can do so in one smooth motion while still keeping your eyes on the road and one hand on the road, which basically means you’re limited to swipeable devices.

Voice Activated is Perfect

If you don’t like the idea of having to pull off the road each time you want to enter a new location into your GPS devices, you’d better exchange your current unit with one that is voice activated.

As of yet, there aren’t any laws regulating the way you use a GPS unit that comes pre-installed in your vehicle.

Penalties for Getting Stopped While Handling a GPS Unit

The most obvious side effect of getting pulled over while using a portable GPS unit while driving is that you’ll get ticketed for distracted driving. Not only does this mean a fine, but can also lead to significantly higher insurance premiums. If there’s a bench warrant for your arrest or if you do something to irritate the traffic patrol officer, you may be arrested.

 

Motorcycle Laws: Two Wheels Of Freedom, Right?

Motorcycle Laws: Two Wheels Of Freedom, Right?

Motorcycle Laws: Two Wheels Of Freedom, Right?

The warmer weather seems to be intoxicating for Californians. There’s something about feeling the wind through your hair as you cruise down back roads and take in the views. While some are satisfied with a hand out the window or the top down, others may prefer two wheels. A beautiful day in California will bring out motorcyclist. It may be super relaxing, but it can be dangerous if you’re not careful.

Motorcyclists have to obey the same laws that other drivers need to and then some.

They have to be extra careful when riding a motorcycle because they are not protected by anything other than the clothes on their backs. When they get into an accident, they don’t have an airbags or seat belts to keep them safe.

Motorcyclists need to drive as if no one can see them.

Motorcycles are smaller than cars, which makes them easy to miss. Riders need to be aware of blind spots on other cars and semis. They also need to be aware of their own blind spots. Being aware of this allows motorcyclists to successfully lane split, which is where a motorcyclist shares the lane with another vehicle. Typically lane splitting happens when there is heavy traffic. Lane splitting isn’t allowed nationwide, but it is allowed in California as long as it is executed safely.

If you’re driving around at night you need to be cautious in general, but if you’re a motorcyclist, you need to be extra cautious. Motorcycles don’t have big lights, and they aren’t very visible at night. Motorcycles are required by California law to have brake lights and turn signals as well as a headlight. However, they still aren’t very noticeable. Motorcyclists should be aware of this, and exercise safe riding behaviors such as flashing their brake light when they are coming to a stop.

While getting your regular driver’s license is easy, obtaining your motorcycle license is a bit more complicated. California law requires everyone to participate in several motorcycle safety classes in order to get their motorcycle license. This is meant to make the roads safer for all motorists.

The California air flying through your hair is extremely freeing and relaxing. However, we still need to aware of the laws around us.

 

Children's Right And Child Protection

Children’s Right And Child Protection

Children's Right And Child Protection

There is something about a child’s innocence that makes us all want to instinctively protect them. Some argue that it’s the fact that they are so helpless that we feel the need to protect them. Unfortunately, not everyone feels this way about children. There are people out in the world that wish to cause children harm. Whether they knowingly are hurting children or that is not up to a judge to decide.

Children are human too. That means that they also have rights, and deserve a chance in the world.

Unfortunately, some people still choose to abuse their kids. Recently in California, a house full of children who had been severely neglected and abused by their parents was discovered. The only reason we know about these 13 kids is because one lucky 17-year-old girl escaped from her parents and called 911. The 13 siblings all ranged from ages 2 to 29 years old. This begs the question of how did this go unnoticed?

Reports of child abuse come in by the thousands. In 2015, there were four million reported cases of maltreatment involving seven million children. Approximately 683,000 of those children were considered victims of maltreatment. Looking at these numbers from 2015, it is clear to see that we have an issue when it comes to raising the next generation. Child Protective Services (CPS) visited only 12% of the reported cases where the child eventually died.

Child Protective Services is supposed to save children. They’re goal is to protect children from hostile living situations and remove them from abusive homes. When kids suffer from their living situation and can’t remain with their family, CPS steps in and rehomes the kids. The 13 kids in California somehow flew under CPS’s radar, and suffered greatly for it. To help prevent a situation like this from happening again, you can look out for signs of child abuse.

This is what CPS considers child abuse:

  • A physical injury inflicted on a child by another person other than by accidental means.
  • The sexual abuse, assault, or exploitation of a child.
  • The negligent treatment or maltreatment of a child by a person responsible for the child’s welfare under circumstances indicating harm or threatened harm to the child’s health or welfare. This is whether the harm or threatened harm is from acts or omissions on the part of the responsible person.
  • The willful harming or endangerment of the person or health of a child, any cruel or inhumane corporal punishment, or any injury resulting in a traumatic condition.

The children we raise depend on us to help them make it to adulthood. We don’t live in prehistoric times where we have to actively fight off predators to protect our young anymore. Unfortunately, in this day and age, we have to protect the young from a different kind of harm. We have to safeguard them from predators disguised as regular people. As a society, we must guard our children because they will be the ones taking care of us in the future.