Entries Tagged 'SFPD' ↓

City makes some baby steps towards controlling panhandling


I will have to commend them for at least starting the process of trying to control the issue. While these signs are good, especially since they suggest to give to charity, I think citing an ordinance and the fine amount for handing money out the window in traffic would also be a good addition. There also should be more enforcement, which I think there has been. I have noticed fewer of them doing it in my neighborhood, but that may mean they just moved. I do still see a lot of the activity downtown and the block around the Dudley House which is a complete disaster with trash.


So Thumbs up to Police Chief Thum, but don’t stop now, there is so much more you can do.

UPDATE: SD Supreme Court rules excessive force case against Sioux Falls police officers can continue

UPDATE: Link to oral arguments, what is so crazy about listening to this is that 17 officers showed up over 5 drops of blood on a sidewalk to watch an officer slip on a rug . . . and they say they are understaffed. LMFAO.

While I was disappointed that the court supported the warrantless search they did say the trial for excessive force can move forward;

In its recently released opinion, Supreme Court justices agree that circumstances at the time created an exception to the Fourth Amendment ban on unreasonable searches.

If you read the CASE you will see while the officers may have had a right to enter the apartment since they saw blood and heard people fighting throwing Ms. Boggs to the ground was not needed. It seems the only defense the police have is that they didn’t do what she claims. So where did her injuries come from? This is a perfect example of why body cameras are needed.

According to the 2021 salary listing both officers still work for the City of Sioux Falls as of January 1st. Officers Mark Toland and Andrew Pearson both make about $72K a year in hourly pay plus benefits.

I hope to have audio of the oral arguments soon.

Sioux Falls Police Chief ‘Under my Thum’

This morning on the Belfrage show when Greg was interviewing the mayor he called the new Police Chief, Police Chief ‘Thumb’, Paul was quick to correct him it is pronounced ‘Tomb’. Not sure which is worse. But it proved two things to me, Belfrage not only knows very little about National and State politics, he knows absolutely NOTHING about city politics. And as I have mentioned to my many dissenters, when I come up with nicknames for government officials, I don’t pull them from my butt, someone else does. Greg gets the award today for calling our new Chief, Under My Thum.

Epp does a cordial interview with the new guy.

I will be honest with you, one reason I haven’t railed on Thum is because I have only heard glowing remarks about him, I’m a grain of salt dude though. I will give him the benefit of the doubt. But I still take issue with the internal hiring process in this city, but that is not Thum’s fault.

We will be watching.

Sioux Falls already has laws on the books to combat panhandling

While the city is correct it is hard to manage panhandling due to the 1st Amendment, they can only solicit face to face and not impede traffic which can mean fines for the solicitor and the contributor;

32-27-1. Yielding right-of-way to pedestrian making proper crossing–Regulated intersections–Violation as petty offense – The driver of any vehicle upon a highway within a business or residence district shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the highway within any clearly marked crosswalk or any regular pedestrian crossing included in the prolongation of the lateral boundary lines of the adjacent sidewalk at the end of a block, except at intersections where the movement of traffic is being regulated by traffic officers or traffic direction devices. However, no pedestrian may suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle which is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard. A violation of this section by a driver is a petty offense.

32-27-3. Local ordinances regulating crossing at controlled intersections – Local authorities in their respective jurisdictions may by ordinance require that at intersections where traffic is controlled by traffic control signals or by police officers, pedestrians shall not cross a roadway against a red or stop signal, and between adjacent intersections so controlled shall not cross at any place except in a marked or unmarked crosswalk.


CITY OF SIOUX FALLS ORDINANCE –> CHAPTER 130.000
SOLICITING. Asking for money, objects of value, or soliciting the sale of goods or services with the intention that the money or object be transferred. The goods sold, or services rendered immediately at that time, and at that place.
Soliciting shall include using the spoken, written, or printed word, bodily gestures, signs or other means with the purpose of obtaining an immediate donation of money or other thing of value or soliciting the sale of goods or services.

PROHIBITED ACTS:
(1) No person shall solicit in an aggressive manner in any public place.
(2) No person shall solicit on private property without first having obtained the permission of the owner or other person lawfully in possession of the property.
(3)No person shall solicit an operator or other occupant of a motor vehicle while the vehicle is in motion or part of traffic on a street or highway. This prohibition shall not include the advertisement of the sale of goods or services to be accomplished when the vehicle is no longer on a public street or highway.
(4) No person shall solicit by stating that funds are needed to meet a specific need, when the solicitor does not intend to use the funds to meet that need or does not have that need.
130.999 Any person violating any provision of this chapter, for which no other penalty is provided, shall be subject to the penalty provisions of §10.999 (Up to $500 Dollar Fine)

131.001 – Disorderly Conduct:
A person commits disorderly conduct when he or she knowingly:
(a) Creates a disturbance of the public order by an act of violence or by an act likely to produce violence;
(b) Engages in, promotes, instigates, encourages, aids or abets fighting or any similar violent threatening or tumultuous behavior;
(c) Makes or causes any unreasonably loud noise;
(d) Addresses profane, obscene or abusive language or threats of violence to any person present so as to create a clear and present danger of violence;
(e) Refuses or fails to cease and desist any peaceful conduct or activity likely to produce a breach of peace where there is an imminent threat of violence and where the police have made all reasonable efforts to protect the otherwise peaceful conduct and activity and have requested that the conduct and activity be stopped and explained the request if there is time;
(f) Fails to obey a lawful order of dispersal by a person known by him or her to be a peace officer under circumstances where three or more persons are committing acts of disorderly conduct in the immediate vicinity which acts are likely to cause substantial harm or serious inconvenience, annoyance or alarm;
(g) Loiters, crowds or congregates on the public streets or sidewalks so as to unreasonably obstruct or interfere with pedestrian or vehicular traffic or use thereof or so as to create an unsafe condition for vehicular or pedestrian traffic or use of the street or sidewalk and who fails or refuses to disperse and move on when ordered to do so by a police officer;

As you can see, the city has plenty of ‘tools in the toolbox’ to combat illegal panhandling yet the only thing they (whoever they is) seem to be doing is putting up random traffic marquis for 24 hours and calling it good. Cruise control government, once again at its finest. I think we should give the panhandlers the addresses of all the city councilors and mayor and drive them to those neighborhoods to set up shop. I bet you could raise a lot of money on White Church Lane.

(MLZ contributed to this post with ordinance references)

Sioux Falls PO looks the other way while kid urinates near bike trail

Just in case any superior officer with the force is reading this, it occurred around 6:30 PM tonight at Cherry Rock park with an officer on an ATV.

As I was riding by the ball fields tonight at Cherry Rock park I noticed a game going on, to my surprise only a couple hundred feet from the portable bathroom a player about 10-12 years old (who should know better) in his full baseball uniform and hat had his wang out and was peeing right along the trail, as I yelled at him to knock if off while riding by, he just laughed and continued, at that moment I looked over and an officer on an ATV talking to a parent looked over as I pointed at the kid, he just turned around and continued to talk to a parent.

Urinating in public, next to a baseball game and near a bike trail wouldn’t you think the officer would have said something? Nope. Apparently it is OK to urinate in a public park as long as you are wearing a youth sports uniform (I told you that is all people care about in this town).

Ironically, after I did my downtown loop, I did see the same ATV cop chasing some transients out from under the Cliff Avenue bridge, so he does have his priorities. None of them were urinating . . . yet.

I never want anyone ever to tell me to my face that our cops are overworked and underpaid, because it is complete B.S.!

Lincoln, NE Police Chief inquiry includes input from the Public, a National Search and recognizing Experience and Diversity

Sioux Falls is often compared to Lincoln due to similarities in size (they have about 100K more people). Recently they started a search for a new police chief. The first thing they did was engage the public before the search even started asking them in a public forum what they wanted in a new chief. They also performed a National search in which 3 of the 4 finalists come from other states, and only one candidate is internal (currently a retired Captain from the force). They also have tons of experience (Between 20-30 years) and notice that TWO are women and THREE are minority.

I’m not saying Sioux Falls should do identical to what Lincoln did, but it is obvious they put a little effort into it, instead of turning on the cruise control. Often when I am critical of our city government I will bring up openness, ethics and competency. This contrast between Lincoln and Sioux Falls blatantly shows how we have a ‘go it alone’ attitude instead of learning from other communities. One of the reasons we send our elected officials to national governing conferences is to learn from other communities (and I am NOT talking about that right-winger conference Neitzert went to) I’m talking about non-partisan events like National League of Cities.

The contrast between how Lincoln did this and how we did this is startling, and frankly pretty embarrassing.

Sioux Falls City Council Agenda June 14-15, 2021

Police Chief Finalists Meet and Greet • Monday June 14 • 5:30 PM, Belbas Theater at the Washington Pavilion

The public is invited to meet the final candidates for the City’s next Police Chief during a “Conversation with the Candidates” event at 5:30 p.m. June 14 in the Belbas Theater at the Washington Pavilion. The final candidates for the position are Lt. Nick Cook and Lt. Jonathan Thum, who both currently serve with the Sioux Falls Police Department (SFPD).

The event will be an opportunity for the candidates to introduce themselves to the community. A meet and greet will be held from 5:30-6 p.m. in the Belbas Lobby, followed by a moderated conversation from 6:15-7 p.m. with the candidates in the Belbas Theater. Attendees will be able to suggest questions for the candidates prior to entering the theater.

Districting Commission • Monday June 14 • 5:30 PM • Carnegie Town Hall

(Yeah, apparently the city needs to schedule this important meeting at the same time as meeting the Police Chief candidates. I often tell people when it comes to openness in government it’s the smallest and simplest things, like not scheduling two important meetings at the same time. Open government is NOT complicated and doesn’t need someone to provide recommendations or a list as many have asked me to do. I have often said, if it doesn’t have to do with city employees private records or pending litigation, it should be open for review by the public, and that’s basically what state law says also.)

The Commission will discuss maps and a timeline.

Informational Meeting • Tuesday June 15 • 4 PM • Carnegie Town Hall

Presentations on the USD Discovery Center (I think they will be asking for more money from the city), the May Financial Report and Workforce Housing Study (and as I mentioned above, only one of the presentations has supporting docs already posted. Not sure why these cannot already be posted before Tuesday. It’s the simple things folks, like allowing citizens to review documents before the meeting).

Regular Meeting • Tuesday June 15 • 6 PM • Carnegie Town Hall

TIFs and a lot of other garbage.

Mayor Ten Haken whittles the Police Chief choice down to two lieutenants

Well, I wasn’t surprised that the candidates were picked internally;

“Conversation with the Candidates” will take place at the Belbas Theater at the Washington Pavilion next Monday at 5:30 pm. The two final candidates are Sioux Falls Police Lt. Jonathan Thum and Lt. Nick Cook.

After the announcement today, some have been asking why a couple of mid-rank officers got the hat tip and not a captain? I asked someone in the know if any applied, they replied ‘YES’. There have been several rumors floating around that the top brass including the current police chief haven’t been making Paul very happy, and maybe the reason he most likely is going to promote from the 2nd tier.

I have heard both officers are well liked and equal in qualifications. But I’m guessing the prettier one will probably prevail 🙂

UPDATE: City of Sioux Falls(?) finally addressing panhandlers?

UPDATE: The sign was gone this morning and must have been removed last night. Me thinks someone wasn’t quite following the rules.

Imagine my surprise today while driving down Cliff at the intersection of 14th Street when I saw the traffic sign below, which read in 3 frames; GIVE TO . . . CHARITY . . . NOT TO PANHANDLERS.

At first I thought this may be the handy work of the city, but I am not sure, there wasn’t much info from the sign itself. If it is the city, I guess I should say ‘thanks’ for finally doing something, but this wasn’t my suggestion, I said to put in permanent signage at the intersections informing motorists it is illegal to impede traffic while handing money out the window with the listed ordinance and fine.

I’m also not even sure if this is following sign code, even if the city put it up. Also, what is it costing taxpayers? If this was a private political donation of sorts, shouldn’t there be a disclaimer?

If the city truly did this (it is on city bike trail property) it would be nice if the mayor or the part-time mayor, Beck, at least put out a press release about it.

While I applaud the administration for possibly doing this, I continue to be baffled by the way these things are done. Cruise control government at it’s finest.

Maybe they should put a Girl Scout cookie stand next to it?

Sioux Falls Mayor TenHaken selects Rubberstamp Hiring Committee for future Police Chief

Let’s not kid ourselves, this panel which consists of two city employees who work for Paul, and a person who rents private office space from him isn’t really going to get too ‘edgy’ and suggest Paul hires someone externally or qualified;

The hiring panel plans to identify the finalists by mid-June. At that point, the community will be invited to meet and interact with the finalists. Details regarding the public engagement opportunity will be outlined at a later date.

What is this, an episode of ‘SURVIVOR’? While I would most certainly disagree with whatever internal yahoo the mayor picks, it is ultimately his decision, so why all the smoke and mirrors to make it appear someone else is picking the new chief? Well, because he is a Sh!tty leader and we all know this.

By charter, as the city’s employee manager if I were advising the mayor I would spend some of that moldy developer welfare money on a consultant that would review external, nationwide candidates and also review internal candidates. Pick two from each category and make a personal selection from there.

While I agree public engagement is needed, let’s face it, the job of a city manager is to hire qualified directors, Joe 6-Pack, like myself may have an opinion on it, but what do I know about hiring police chiefs? Ironically, what does the color blind graphic artist know about it either?

I still think that the mayor needs to hire an external bulldog that will clean up the internal mess while mending the relationship with the community. And on day one I would enforce a physical fitness policy and tell the hospitals to shut off the FREE feeding trough. Our police make well over a living wage, they can afford to pack a sack lunch.