It had to happen (Angelenos fire at Sheriff's helicopter)

Sometimes those thingskeep me up half the night. Not that I condone this action. And when they shine that incredibly bright light at you like you just escaped from prison…well, I just flip them off.

In 2005 someone actually shot down a sheriff’s helicopter about 20 miles from my previous home in NM. Link


Of course he’s right, but in L.A. it’s a constant annoyance, and I sometimes wonder how much they accomplish by flying around dense urban neighborhoods flashing really bright lights, in a seemingly indiscriminate manner. It was the riots of the 60s that changed the mentality of the LAPD (and many other west coast PDs); they now were at warfare, and got warfare-type equipment. Many cops (many of whom come in from the suburbs to police the inner-city), started to see the populace as a foreign people who have to be subdued, rather than protected. (A Village Voice article about this came out in the 90s, wherein several cops were quoted using these terms. I think one even referred to the people in the inner-city as “animals.”)

It was a robbery call. Using a helicopter for a robbery call seems excessive to me. If the L.A. cops would just get out of their damn cars and walk around, and get to know the people of their patrol beats better, they probably could get by without helicopters. In fact, if you want to commit a crime in L.A., just do it in a place where cars can’t go, and hope all the helicopters are busy. They probably won’t even bother to investigate it.

Of course, the huge expanse of the city, the lack of a sufficient number of officers and the pervasive gang culture make this a difficult prospect in L.A. (as opposed to New York). But, the gang unit in in LAPD has been able to become very familiar with the usual suspects, so it’s not impossible.

Needless to say, I’d never fire at a helicopter simply because it keeps me awake; but I might use my slingshot.

So basically it’s still motherfuck you and yo punk as ghetto bird ?

Yes and no. The vast majority of people who have L.A. Sheriff’s helicopters hovering over their house in the middle of the night have nothing to do with gangbangers. And Icecube is just a commodity now. (If you can, it’s easier to make lots of money legally, and not having your residence raided all the time.)

I’m more just referring to the use of equipment instead of human relations (not the kind in a company hiring people). It’s a war-like mentality. I don’t expect any PD to stop poverty and other things that lead to crime, but I’d prefer that they find more effective ways of dealing with it.

And I’d like them to stop hovering over my house because they’re too lazy to actually walk the street.

At least a couple of nights a week (more often in warmer months) we have a police helicopter circling over our neighborhood, shining its 3 zillion candlepower spotlight into houses and onto the street. It gets annoying at times, especially when it’s late and people are in bed.

Hmf, I used to live under the main flightpath of a naval air station. I can now sleep through a C5 Galaxy coming in at about 100 feet over my bedroom. I could probably sleep through a raid next door complete with helicopters and a firefight.

When police helicopters circle overhead (here in Oakland), it literally shakes the house. It’s HELL of intimidating, and nothing says “police state” like helicopters with searchlights. Plus I can’t get past thinking that it’s probably been marched out and into service because somebody rich had some kind of crime happen, and threw a tantrum.

God knows when the regular folks are shot or robbed, you can expect a black & white to amble along probably no more than an hour later. Or so.

Thanks brujaja and mhendo for commiserating. I lived for a while in Oakland on Brook Street (Just east of Pill Hill and South of the 580). But it was nothing compared to Los Angeles. (Mainly just noisy auto repair shops during the day.)

However, in L.A., it’s not a question of class, if you asked me, but laziness. East Hollywood is not exactly a rich area (depending on where you put the boundries; some people like to conflate it with Los Feliz). They just don’t want to do foot work. I’m aware that a helicopter with infrared capabilities can track someone down very well, but that’s a lot of expense for a mere robbery.