Home > Eureka California > Dark cloud will hang over next police chief

Dark cloud will hang over next police chief

As the City of Eureka prepares to accept applications for a new police chief, it finds itself in the same pickle it was in after firing popular police chief Garr Nielsen last July.

Worse yet, the new chief will have few meaningful guidelines to prevent a similar fate to Nielsen because the reasons for the firing were never made public. Instead City Manager Dave Tyson stuck to a bland explanation of “differences in management styles.”

But that sort of says it all — if the new chief differs with Tyson, who holds way too much power in the city of Eureka according to his vocal critics, he or she will get the heave-ho just the same.

As noted in today’s Times-Standard, Nielsen was hired to bring changes to EPD after a string of officer related shooting deaths left citizens outraged and scared of its under-trained, over-reactionary police force. Nielsen quickly became popular with people who began seeing improvements in their long-neglected neighborhoods.

To quell the anger that followed Nielsen’s firing, the city held a pair of public meetings to hear what people wanted in a new chief. The T-S reports:

The message was fairly consistent: Citizens said they wanted an educated, ethical leader with experience in community-oriented policing programs to effectively use limited resources and engage the community to tackle the city’s drug, crime and blight issues.

Problem is, Eureka had just that in Nielsen, but the city manager fired him. We can expect the same if the new chief fails to kowtow to the good old boy governance that has elevated Eureka to the shining example of backwardness that it is today.

Given this thinly coated steaming pile of crap, who in their right mind would apply for this job? Sure, insiders who like a wild west climate in the police department and know just how to soothe Tyson’s “management style” will throw their hats in. But an “educated” and “ethical leader” would no doubt find an inhospitable environment here.

  1. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 8:25 am

    Eureka is the elbow of Humboldt County.

  2. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 8:45 am

    more like the arm pit.
    Rumor has it, the old fire chief (and tysons good bud) is still on the payroll to help select a new top cop. This town is just a revolving door of bad re-runs.

  3. February 22, 2012 at 8:57 am

    To say the very least, Heraldo. Unfortunately, the people of Eureka (whoever they might be) get exactly what the deserve since this kind of police is exactly what they want when they vote in the current crop of City Council people.

  4. Natural Jack
    February 22, 2012 at 8:58 am

    There’s a dark cloud hanging over the whole city of Eureka.

    Eureka is just a little mafia town with local mafia thugs.

    Move on now.

  5. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 9:01 am

    You can bet the rank and file are rooting for Dave Parris, who never saw a police brutality case he couldn’t justify. He may be the only man who’d make us long for just keeping Murl on the job…

  6. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 9:22 am

    Murls kid Ron is gonna get the job..Watch and see.

  7. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 9:23 am

    Murls kid Ron is gonna get the job. Watch and see.

  8. Fightback2012
    February 22, 2012 at 9:36 am

    The corruption of Eureka is unreal!
    Yes, the voters did put these council clowns into office, but thousands of voters didn’t come out to vote.
    When you have big money behind you, Matthew Bass and Rob Macbeth bullying candidates, a city manager whose hands are filthy with lawsuits and corruption, a group of developers funding the right so they can have their way with our land-it’s hard to see your way out.
    This reign of terror will come to an end, we must find the strength to fight back!

  9. High Finance
    February 22, 2012 at 9:57 am

    No, the rhetoric on this blog is “unreal”.

  10. February 22, 2012 at 10:00 am

    To quote Fightback2012: “Yes, the voters did put these council clowns into office, but thousands of voters didn’t come out to vote.”

    VOTE FOR WHAT? They’re all corrupt. (The corruption of Eureka is unreal!) Those that did and didn’t vote got exactly what they want.

  11. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 10:03 am

    We will indeed be fighting back in 2012, “Fightback2012”, Linda Atkins will be facing a real candidate instead of plastic Polly Endert.

    If Marian Brady can kick Larry Glass’s ass at the polls, Linda’s chances look pretty grim.

    Better ratchet up the smears and personal attacks, H-clown.

  12. February 22, 2012 at 10:33 am

    If Marian Brady can kick Larry Glass’s ass at the polls, Linda’s chances look pretty grim.

    Even “Brady Bunch” supporters see Brady as a plastic, single-issue puppet.

    Will Arkley spend another $30,000 for a fake-o ballot measure that Linda’s opponent can get behind? It worked perfectly last time.

  13. Fact Checker
    February 22, 2012 at 10:53 am

    “The next time they give you all that civic bullshit about voting, keep in mind that Hitler was elected in a full, free democratic election” -George Carlin

  14. Santayana
    February 22, 2012 at 11:10 am

    Hitler’s speech before the passing of the Enabling ActIn his speech before the Reichstag on March 23, 1933, just before the Enabling Act is passed, Adolf Hitler speaks out:

    By its decision to carry out the political and moral cleansing of our public life, the Government is creating and securing the conditions for a really deep and inner religious life. The advantages for the individual which may be derived from compromises with atheistic organizations do not compare in any way with the consequences which are visible in the destruction of our common religious and ethical values. The national Government sees in both Christian denominations the most important factor for the maintenance of our society. It will observe the agreements drawn up between the Churches and the provinces; their rights will not be touched. The Government, however, hopes and expects that the task of national and ethical renewal of our people, which it has set itself, will receive the same respect by the other side. The Government will treat all other denominations with objective and impartial justice. It cannot, however, tolerate allowing membership of a certain denomination or of a certain race being used as a release from all common legal obligations, or as a blank cheque for unpunishable behavior, or for the toleration of crimes. [The national Government will allow and confirm to the Christian denominations the enjoyment of their due influence in schools and education.] And it will be concerned for the sincere cooperation between Church and State. The struggle against the materialistic ideology and for the erection of a true people’s community (Volksgemeinschaft) serves as much the interests of the German nation as of our Christian faith. …The national Government, seeing in Christianity the unshakable foundation of the moral and ethical life of our people, attaches utmost importance to the cultivation and maintenance of the friendliest relations with the Holy See. …The rights of the churches will not be curtailed; their position in relation to the State will not be changed.[4]

  15. overit
    February 22, 2012 at 11:26 am

    The dark cloud of ignorance and destruction is bred in Eureka. There’s no other excuse for people like Marian Brady, Dave Tyson, Matthew Owen, Robin and Cherie Arkley, Rex Bohn…..the list goes on and on. Years of political inbreeding is at it’s height, and nothing will satisfy these egos. Bought and paid for candidates, officials, sheriffs, and city managers-come join the Arkley Club!

  16. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    “Those that did and didn’t vote got exactly what they want.”

    for the most part I agree with you (and what’s being said) but really, people don;t know what they’re voting for much beyond face value, and money has afforded many a facelifts. For example, Measure N. Spend a few hundred G’s to get the word out that it’s “big box on the bay” instead of “marina center” and see how people vote. No such action was taken, because no such counter-campaign money existed. Just one of many examples.

  17. February 22, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    Hitler’s promises were about as good as Barack Obama’s.

    Maybe it eludes most people, but participating democracy is ABOUT personal responsibility and personal accountability.

  18. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    Only thirteen posts before we see George Clark, the almighty fact checker (that’s a laugh) invoke Godwin’s law.

    Yep, you all are sooo much smarter and just know what’s best for the rest of us ignorant rednecks; I bet y’all think it’d be better if Larry Glass was just installed as benevolant dictator of Eureka rather than having elections.

    Dark Days Indeed,

  19. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    Sure, 1203, the regressive side had no money, no sugar daddy like Bill Pierson, right?

  20. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 12:18 pm

    “Hitler’s promises were about as good as Barack Obama’s.

    Maybe it eludes most people, but participating democracy is ABOUT personal responsibility and personal accountability.”

    About as good? I’d say just as worthless. Be careful to blame the victim…look at the person standing behind the cash register and ask yourself how much of their life they spend researching this stuff, and how much they should vs. being able to trust eachother. Do unto others, etc. is all well and good, but don’t do unto others as you don’t want others to do unto you is just as sound. Can’t blame somebody for wanting a nice park by the bay, yet unwittingly voting for a huge slab of cement and multi-story buildings instead, because that’s exactly how the money paid to deceive them. It’s not a case of hit and miss lying, but calculated study of language and facebook statistics and voter turnout charts and demographicc studies…it’s a very polluted game.

  21. Fact Checker
    February 22, 2012 at 12:20 pm

    Anonymous said:
    February 22, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    “Only thirteen posts before we see George Clark, the almighty fact checker (that’s a laugh) …”

    It is a fact, I am not George Clark. Call me on it if I am lying H, you know who I am. Can’t stand the facts, eh? Perfectly normal. People work hard to create and maintain their illusions.

  22. February 22, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    “…it’s a very polluted game”

    That’s my point. Everyone believes it is JUST a “game.” That is, until they’re held personally accountable. Then they try to blame someone else for lying to them when they knew they were lying all along.

  23. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 12:40 pm

    You’ve created plenty of illusions, factless.

  24. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    Even if you aren’t GClark, thanks for invalidating your venomous spewage of an argument by invoking Godwin’s law.

  25. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    Well, I use the word ‘game’ loosely. I don’t see people holding eachother personally accountable, except by people who believe in ‘the game’…like “don’t blame me, I voted for ____” Like I said, the person behind walmart’s cash register isn’t blaming any real people in their vicinity, just as the person who refuses to shop there isn’t blaming the people who do. Basically everybody knows politics are corrupt, but I don’t think people are blaming eachother so much as a faceless entity that the same monies create for them to blame. You and I are ignorant of many subjects…I don’t know anything about corn and wheat trade…but presented with a little info, I can and will formulate an opinion and decidedly vote if it comes to that. Same with everything. Who’s providing what information?

    The reality is the do’ers who literally build the physical reality around us. Everything else is blaming the victim. No walmart, no walmart shoppers.

  26. Fact Checker
    February 22, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    Anonymous says:
    February 22, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    “Even if you aren’t GClark, thanks for invalidating your venomous spewage of an argument by invoking Godwin’s law.”

    No facts to check here, just more unsubstantiated opinion (aka B.S.)

  27. February 22, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    We can all blame someone for being a “victim.” Everyone dies, but it’s not their fault that they were born to die sometime – it’s that damned God’s fault.

    Problem is, in a Democracy where everyone has a vote, there are no victims. Maybe it’s time to put a face on all these corrupt faceless people.

  28. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Kinda going off the deep end there, joe.

  29. law reader
    February 22, 2012 at 1:40 pm

    City of Eureka in violation of City Ordinance 34.59
    34.59 in part reads: Whenever any person shall have a duly
    appointed, hired, or selected, and whenever any such person
    irrespective of age, shall have served as a member of the Fire
    Department or the Police Department, in any rank or capacity
    whatever, for a period of 25 years or more in the aggregate, the
    Council, upon the written application of any such firefighter or
    police officer, or upon reaching the age of 65 years, SHALL order
    and direct that such person be retired from further service in the
    Fire Department or Police Department.

    Also in the code is any person occupying a position for a year before his/her retirement shall receive the retirement for the
    office they are holding.

    The article said Murl Harpham is 78 years of age. He will have
    held the position of acting police chief for a year in June.

    Okay, Fact Checker look it up and see if I am correct. If so, are
    you the public going to let the City of Eureka break the ordinances
    when they chose to.

  30. Not A Native
    February 22, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    law reader. The meaning of the ordinance you quote is a cop or fireman has a right to go on retirement after either 25 total years of service or becoming 65.

    There are no mandatory retirement requirements in that ordinance. If you think so, you’re a poor reader.

  31. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 2:13 pm

    and pay him retirement wages as a chief? Way better money than a lieutenant..Again, Tyson should manage instead of getting managed by robbie..

  32. Anonymous because I know better
    February 22, 2012 at 2:53 pm

    The chief is chosen, we just do not know who it is. Politicians and staff are placed where they can further the flow of cash into the right hands and solidify control. Consolidation of the fire departments effectively breaks the union (or will, watch). Measure O is spent on whatever Dave wants. HWMA steps in to “save the MRF” after outsourcing from the City of Eureka swiftly killed ACRC. Shall I go on? This is organized crime, deeply engrained and anyone with the balls to call it out for what it is is quickly silenced, discredited and run out of business. Kamela?

  33. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    They hold the circle jerk public input meetings for comment as to what we want in a Police Chief (Nielsin was just what we wanted) to appease residents and waste time so Harpham will be sure to retire on a Chief’s pension.

  34. High Finance
    February 22, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    Now you kooks are comparing Marian Brady to Hitler ?

    Have you all lost your minds ? With rhetoric like that spewed here, it is no wonder that Glass/Kuhnel et. al lost so badly.

    But keep it up, we need Atkins to lose just as badly.

  35. Fact Checker
    February 22, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    High Finance says:
    February 22, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    “Now you kooks …”

    That’s all you have? More name calling? Why don’t you just call ‘em “commies” or “terrorist” or any other hateful name de jour?

  36. Fact Checker
    February 22, 2012 at 3:35 pm

    Law Reader 1:40
    § 34.59 RETIREMENT ELIGIBILITY.
    (A) Whenever any person shall have been duly appointed, hired, or selected, and whenever any such person, irrespective of age, shall have served as a member of the Fire Department or the Police Department, in any rank or capacity whatever, for a period of 25 years or more in the aggregate, the Council, upon the written application of any such firefighter or police officer, or upon such person reaching the age of 65 years, shall order and direct that such person be retired from further active service in the Fire Department or Police Department….”

    It is interesting. “…or upon such person reaching the age of 65 years, shall order and direct…” The “shall” seems to be binding and I am unable to find a new ordinance which supersedes this one. Chances are, court rulings have rendered this requirement to be obsolete.

  37. law reader
    February 22, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    Fact finder: See Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)
    in part it reads: The Age Discrimination Act allows compulsory
    retirement for firefighters, law enforcement officers, and in some
    circumstances bona fide executives or those in high policy making
    positions.

    To Not a Native: Who can’t read?

    Hi Fi: Your the exception. I would have retired you at twelve.

    Fact Finder: The California Supreme Court ruled that Charter
    Cities are not exempt from California Law in regards to personnel
    in public safety positions. The City of Eureka has no way to
    cop out on this.

  38. High Finance
    February 22, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    No Factless, “kooks” just about sums it up.

    law reader, it is “you’re” not “your”.

  39. Fact Checker
    February 22, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Law Reader, thank you. Research and thoughtful discourse is a refreshing change from the opinionated hyperbole from some of the other bloggers. Thank you.

  40. Fact Checker
    February 22, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    i.e. High Finance

  41. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    High Finance can’t defend his comments so he has to point out errors in spelling and grammar.

  42. February 22, 2012 at 5:20 pm

    Anonymous should talk…

  43. February 22, 2012 at 7:41 pm

    I’m sorry, but “people on both sides” are smarter than you.

  44. Anonymous
    February 22, 2012 at 8:41 pm

    Actually, nigga please.becareful.That comment could land you in a lot of trouble. It amazes me Steve Stronbeck or shall we say High Finance is correcting someones English. Talk to him once and you would find he isn’t the smartest guy around. Ask other members of our church. Lots of people in the congregation don’t even like him.

  45. RefFan
    February 23, 2012 at 8:45 am

    wow Anon, you go to church and treat your fellow man like that? Talk about hypocrite!! I’d like to know which church you go to and send them a letter requesting a sermon on Love thy Neighbor, decency, respect, etc. Oh never mind, youre one of those who goes to church for appearences only.

  46. High Finance
    February 23, 2012 at 9:43 am

    Should anyone treat you seriously when you compare Marion Brady and other conservatives to Hitler and/or the Mafia ?

    You want respect (factless, natural jack & assorted anonymouses) ? You want civil discourse ?

    Then discuss issues like an adult !

  47. Fact Checker
    February 23, 2012 at 11:02 am

    High Finance said:
    February 23, 2012 at 9:43 am

    “Then discuss issues like an adult !”

    This is sooooooo funny coming from the most entitled spoiled baby in the blogosphere.

  48. High Finance
    February 23, 2012 at 12:44 pm

    You never miss an opportunity to show off your lack of class Factless.

  49. Fact Checker
    February 23, 2012 at 12:51 pm

    This is sooooooo funny coming from the most classless writer in the blogosphere.

  50. law reader
    February 24, 2012 at 7:50 am

    Hi Fi,

    You’re an ass. Is that correct?

  51. Anonymous
    February 24, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    Larry is still pouting because his buddy, and personal law enforcer, Garr is no longer in power. Boo Hoo Larry, get over it.

    Whomever replaces Garr Nielsen will be an improvement. GN has cost the city of Eureka hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    GN is gone and EPD seems to be running just fine.

  52. February 24, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    “Larry is still pouting”?

    Who writes stupid things like this? Please, stand proudly and be counted.

  53. Anonymous
    February 24, 2012 at 6:18 pm

    1:44 must be Owlsey slinging more shit.

  54. law reader
    February 24, 2012 at 7:03 pm

    1:44 How has Garr cost this city thousands of dollars? Are you
    sitting on your night stick?

    The City Manager has cost this city hundreds of thousands of
    dollars. This includes the sexual harassment suits and the
    overall bad management. Salary $157,000.

  55. Verbena
    February 27, 2012 at 9:30 pm

    Murl Harpham should be fired with no retirement pension. He has been behind the abuse and killing of people in Eureka, under the color of law, for many decades. He is so entrenched in corruption, he doesn’t even know when he sounds like the psychopath that he is. Last time he was interim chief, there were multiple murders of civilians by Eureka police. He says, [paraphrase] “We can’t have our officers going around worrying about lawsuits” (in response to Martin Cotton family’s lawyer being quoted saying that she hopes the $4,075, 000 verdict against the City of Eureka and three of the individual cops would be a deterrent to future excessive force! Before Murl passes out of this world, I hope he is pennyless and thinks back on how “uncomfortable” he wants to make it for homeless people to live.

    Justin Winkle, Adam Laird, and Gary Whitmer should be fired and never again allowed to be an officer or carry a weapon for their involvement in murdering Martin Frederick Cotton II. Beating him and leaving him for dead in the jail. It is disgusting that such a system and ignorant people allow them to continue on in denial- no redemption, no remorse, no accountability- no truth on their part.

    Terry Liles should be fired, never allowed to work with youth, prohibited from being an officer or detective, and never allowed to carry weapons again, for his murders of Christopher Burgess and Zachary Cook, and his involvement in the murder of Cheri Moore. Also, due to his remorseless, shameful harassment of youth and his recent striking of Occupy Eureka’s Andrew Hamer’s head area with a metal baton.

    Rodrigo Reyna-Sanchez should be fired and prohibited from being an officer and carrying weapons for his consistent violence, life threatening, and bullying of defenseless people and his choice to harrass activists and vulnerable people while he ignores violent crime occurring in his presence or announced on his radio.

    Michael Guy, Joshua Siipola, Michael Quigley are a few others who have not the humanity nor integrity to be trusted with authority or weapons! They commit sick and twisted (and criminal) acts.

    Unfortunately, some of the newer, younger cops are getting excited to be like their viscous co-workers. And with Murl Harpham, they are getting slapped on the ass with praises the more corrupt they are.

    Of course, in the current set up, all of the above officers would be imprisoned for their behaviors -if they were not cops. The above suggestions are generous, considering their crimes against humanity, and would go a long way to protecting our communities.

    There will soon be petitions by local people regarding some of the above-needed consequences. It is unfortunate how ignorant so many people want to remain. No local newspaper or local journalist wanted to cover the Martin Cotton civil trial. No politicians seemed to pay attention. All of you- if you had heard and watched the testimony and evidence, if you had demanded updates from the trial, or if you had attended one day of the trial, would have found that Winkle, Laird, and Whitmer were liars who killed a defenseless man. They are still EPD cops, and Harpham brags about how Winkle and Laird were promoted and rewarded in 2007, the same year they murdered Martin Cotton.

    Murl Harpham and the SWAT thugs did a coup on Garr Nielsen (who demoted Suzie Owsley and Murl and disbanded SWAT). Tyson needs to go along with his cover-up city council.

  56. High Finance
    March 1, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    I have heard people on the right and the left call you nuts.

    I guess they were right.

  57. March 2, 2012 at 12:33 am

    Is it Verbena’s courage that makes her nuts in your eyes? Because she just told the truth.

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