Saturday, September 04, 2004

A response to Wendy re Kobe Bryant, from Bob Martin


If provocative is what you wanted, that is what you got.

I have a few thoughts from another perspective.

First, the justice system is NOT broken. It functions incredibly well, and certainly better than any other system on the planet. "Government" officials and employees are NOT collectively corrupt nor of one Stepford-wife-like mind. All but a very few are committed to doing the very best that they can to serve the public good. Sometimes people disagree with what they do, and the fact that they are free to disagree, is what makes the system work so well. The reality is that there is a small army of underpaid, generally under appreciated, overworked, dedicated, kind, loving, gentle "government" people in understaffed programs standing ready to help victims of crime all across the country.

I am still looking for some clue about what was corrupt about the Kobe case. If there was any corruption, it occurred under the watchful eye of 600 reporters from all over the world. If the prosecutor, defense and judge are all in agreement, that hardly sounds corrupt. It may not be how some would have liked to see the case resolved, but all indications are that it was resolved legally.

Maybe the reason "no one" else spoke out from day one is that there was nothing to speak out about. I submit that NOW not commenting wasn't "unconscionable," it was prudent given the lack of facts available at the time. After all, the DA filed the case. isn't that what he was supposed to do?

The only group of people who acted irresponsibly was the news media. "They" are the ones who caused the complainant all the grief. Of course, that is what they do. The news media is the only institution in this country that does not have rules, regulations, or a code of ethical conduct to guide them. Why aren't we outraged about their conduct?

Life is always about choices and it always interests me how much energy some people put into demanding that others decide things the way they tell them to. Of course, that is not really choice, it is submission. The DA chose not to proceed, but had he decided to proceed and put the victim on the stand, it was up to her to choose whether to cooperate or not. If she didn't cooperate, the judge would have had to choose what to do about it. If we, collectively didn't like what he chose, we could choose to remove him from office. It seems to me that when individuals are allowed to make their own choices, the system works much better. The obvious caveat is that we are all ultimately responsible for those choices and the consequences that flow from them.

I have no idea whether mandatory arrest policies and mandatory "no drop" policies disempower the victim or not. I do believe that "mandatory" anything in human affairs is bad policy.

Lastly, holding the Eagle, Colorado, DA up as representative of the entire criminal justice system is like using Lucy to represent all psychologists.


Bob Martin is Vice President of Gavin De Becker, Inc. Gavin is the author of the best selling book "the Gift of Fear", among others.

Gavin de Becker and Associates provides consultation and support to public figures, government agencies, corporations, and others who face high-stakes predictions of violence. Their eighty-five member firm advises media figures on safety and privacy. The Protective Security Division provides consultation, logistical support, advance work, and protective coverage for public figures.

Their Threat Management Division evaluates and assesses inappropriate, alarming, and threatening communications and situations. They provide expert-witness consultation and testimony on court cases that involve stalking, threats, and the foreseeability or prevention of violence. They also develop artificial intuition systems known as MOSAIC®.

During his 28-year career with the Los Angeles Police Department, Robert Martin directed several of the Department’s most important responsibilities. He served as Commanding Officer of specialized detective divisions, including Commanding Officer of Detective Headquarters Division. In 1990, he founded the LAPD’s Threat Management Unit, the first of its kind in the nation. He is a founding member of the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals, chaired its first meetings, and provided the staff support to maintain it. He served as Commanding Officer of the Emergency Control Center during such challenges as the Rodney King trial and the 1994 earthquake.

Prior to joining Gavin de Becker & Associates in 1994, he served two years as Commanding Officer of LAPD’s Personnel Division, directing employment matters for 11,000 LAPD officers and staff. He oversaw Employee Assistance programs, background investigations and evaluations of applicants. During his last year, he initiated the Department’s internal Workplace Violence program.

While with LAPD, Captain Martin pioneered the first police use of MOSAIC. The U.S. Supreme Court, the Federal Reserve Board, the Central Intelligence Agency, the California State Police, and many other agencies have since adopted MOSAIC.

He was subsequently asked to represent the Department on the Advisory Board for development of the MOSAIC used to evaluate hazards in the workplace (angry former or current employees & stalkers who seek out their victims at work).

He was a lead developer on the MOSAIC system co-designed by Gavin de Becker and the United States Marshals Service, now used for evaluating threats to Federal Judges. He led the Development Team on the MOSAIC used for assessing domestic violence situations might escalate to homicide. With it, police departments, prosecutors, and courts will apply a shared approach to separating the routine cases from the imminently dangerous.

Mr. Martin is an Advisor to CAVNET.


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January 24, 2006 at 2:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Martin,
What do you think about the Tig Notaro debacle? What steps should the Threat Management Unit(TMU) take next time to avoid such a travesty and expose the TMU to such ridicule.

January 4, 2010 at 11:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have to express more your opinion to attract more readers, because just a video or plain text without any personal approach is not that valuable. But it is just form my point of view

February 20, 2010 at 12:57 AM  
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