‘THE GRANGER MEMO, PART 3’, plus ODDS AND ITEMS: THE PLANET DOES VOX, NPR’s COMMERCIAL RACKET, ‘The BERRY CHRONICLES II,’ & $5-A-GALLON GAS COMING? WHAT DO YOU SAY?
BY DAN VALENTI
(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, APRIL 26, 2011, FIRST ADD) — No, SteroidsGate has not gone away. Stories like that don’t take time off, although journalists do.
SteroidsGate and The Granger Memo
The Planet now presents for the first time at this website (published first by The Pittsfield Gazette in Dan Valenti’s opinion column) part three of “The Granger Memo.” For clarity, we have included the entire text, including the previously published first two parts. This will help people to understand the full document, in context.
“The Granger Memo” was a document Pittsfield Police Department Capt. David Granger sent under his name via e-mail to PPD officers earlier this month in response to press coverage, particularly by this web site, of SteroidsGate, a term we’ve coined as applied to the various investigations into the use of steroids by local law enforcement officials, particularly within the PPD.
Capt. Granger headed the department’s internal probe early last month at the request of Chief Mike Wynn. The five-day investigation concluded that plainclothes officer and drug unit investigator David Kirchner, also a member of the Berkshire County Drug Task Force, had acted criminally and in a manner unbecoming a PPD officer with regards to his dealings with illegal steroids.
Favorable Treatment for Kirchner? PPD Insiders Say Yes, Command Says No
Kirchner was busted back to uniform and assigned to a beat after first serving a five-day suspension without pay. Sources within the PPD, including those from whom The Planet obtained The Granger Memo, insist Kircher received favorable treatment for what he knows about the inner workings of the department, which they claim is of a compromising nature. Both Capt. Granger and Police Chief Mike Wynn dispute that charge, blaming it on what they call malcontents from within the ranks.
To the best of The Planet’s knowledge, there are two investigation ongoing into SteroidsGate, one local (the PPD won’t identity the agency) and one federal (US Postal Service and Drug Enforcement Administration). To date, Officer Kirchner has not been charged by the courts with any crime.
THE GRANGER MEMO, BY CAPT. DAVID GRANGER, SENT TO PPD STAFF, MID-APRIL 2011:
Typically I would not comment in a department e-mail regarding what is posted on Blogs or in the paper, but the person or persons behind the various unauthorized releases of information, particularly to Valenti, deserve comment and the officers of this department deserve to have their command staff defend them.
First when someone tells the truth it is never an issue or a problem, no matter if the truth is good or bad for the individual or the department. I have always supported what is fair, right and proper and encourage any member of the department to do the same. If you lie, falsify reports and act improperly you get what is deemed appropriate punishment by the Chief, the City Labor Attorney and the appointing authority. The record of discipline (which has been reviewed by Civil Service) has been fair and consistent over the years and I support this.
But I will never support half truths, distorted facts, made up lies and personal vendettas against individuals and character assassination, particularly when they come from a fellow worker(s) and are portrayed in the manner they have been on Valenti’s blog. (fortunately not many intelligent people read or associate themselves for long with a blog as malicious and self serving as his)
It is unfortunate that officers make mistakes and engage in improper behavior at times but officers are human beings and just like all human beings they make mistakes and engage in improper behavior at times. This is not an excuse but the reality of the world we live in. Society is imperfect at times, officers come from society, so therefore officers will be imperfect at times.
The real problem is the behavior that this person or persons are engaging in doesn’t just affect the officer or officers written about, it affects their entire family and the families of all officers. I single out and concentrate on the sworn members of the department because each unauthorized internal release of information has been directed at sworn officers and has been used to paint all officers with the same brush.
You see each officer here has relatives and friends. Mothers, fathers, wives, children (many of which are old enough to read the blogs and papers), brothers, sisters and extended families. Often times these untruths, half truths, distorted facts, lies and personal vendettas cause far greater harm and distress to the families of the officer than they do the officer.
Most veteran officers are numb to this because the department, like every other business, has problems from time to time and unfortunately when a police officer makes a mistake he or she ends up on the front of the paper, which is not typically what happens in other businesses. The higher standard in which society holds police officers can have a punishing affect on the families who see their son, daughter, mother, brother, father or sister in a different light.
The spreading of lies, half truths, distorted facts and the personal vendetta against certain members of the department serves only to further punish the families of police officers. Police officers deal with conflict daily their families typically don’t.
These problems that arise from time to time get all the attention and all the press. While the thousand upon thousands of cases that are successfully investigated and the thousands of positive interactions with the public go mostly un-noticed and unappreciated, particularly by a person or persons that would engage in unauthorized release of information that contain distorted facts, half truths, lies and personal vendettas against members of the department.
You have to ask yourself what type of person would do this? Typically someone that engages in this type of behavior is a coward and gutless. I would submit, just my personal opinion here, that this individual suffers from Narcissistic Personality Disorder. (think excessive admiration of oneself at the expense of all others)
Typically someone with NPD has a grandiose sense of self-importance, exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements, requires excessive admiration, is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others, I could go on and on, but I digress.
Suffice to say that the individual(s) has some problems and personal issues in his/her life and when the camouflage is pulled away more than likely would reveal a train wreck of a life.
Over the history of the Pittsfield Police Department there have been numerous problems and scandals in each decade. This is no different than the numerous scandals and problems that have occurred with politicians, other city agencies, non-for- profits, and private businesses. It happens everywhere it just doesn’t get reported everywhere.
Through it all the women and men of the Pittsfield Police Department have come to work, done their job, and done it exceedingly well the majority of the time. When I choose to retire it will have been an honor to have worked and lived my professional life with the majority of the men and women of the Pittsfield Police. I am proud of what my fellow officers have done and they have my unending admiration for what they put up with and go through on a daily basis.
I would stake the record of accomplishments of the women and men of the Pittsfield Police Department against any like police department in the country. They have accomplished all they have in a “shit hole” of a facility with at times sub-par equipment and with under staffed and at times an under performing support staff. (Again for the record I am addressing sworn officers only because that is who is being attacked. There are and have been many fine civilian support staff in the department that have contributed to the officers accomplishments over the years)
As for the officer(s) or civilian(s) member(s) of the department that are maliciously spreading lies, half-truths, distorted facts and are engaged in personal vendettas against other members of the department you discredit and dishonor all the hard working, honest members of the department.
If you have issues there are appropriate and legal ways to address problems. The Chief is exceedingly open to listening to all complaints. There are the unions, the labor boards, the courts, the DA, civil service, arbitration, the city council, etc. Any one of the union presidents can voice their opinion based on fact in a public forum. There are proper ways to address any complaint if that is what you are looking for, which I don’t believe this individual(s) cares about.
To engage in character assassination on a blog (Valenti’s blog and the previous one you were on with the Berkshire Eagle) just shows what type of person you are. A malicious person that deals primarily in half-truths, distorted facts, lies and character assassination behind the scenes. In other words a coward.
The last incident given out to the blog was filled with half-truths, distorted facts and bold face lies. It reveals your personal agenda against one individual. The case, which includes the facts and the truth is with the DA’s Office, the court and the defendants attorney. It is their job to decide this case in court not your job to use it to advance your personal vendetta.
I am all for the truth and have no problem with reporting the truth. I stand by my commitment to do what is right, fair and proper for the individual when I can and for the department when I should.
This e-mail is my opinion only and is being sent to defend the officers that I proudly serve with. If there are issues by all means report them and address them through the many channels available to all employees of the Pittsfield Police Department.
A person(s) that to engages in character assassination, half-truths, lies and distorted facts doing it anonymously behind the scenes is a person(s) without honor and without integrity. Just another internet “thug” behind the scenes, but a coward in the open.
Should the person(s) engaging in the unauthorized release of information, character assassination, half-truths, distorted facts and lies have any issues with my opinion please feel free to come see me. I doubt you will. I would think you would be more comfortable attacking me behind the scenes or maybe my wife or children. My mother is 87 and would make an easy target for you. Maybe she did something wrong in her life that you could distort and throw on the blog and try to use to discredit me.
To the honest and hardworking officers of the Pittsfield Police Department it is my honor and privilege to serve with you. Hold your head up high and be proud of all that you do and accomplish. You have my respect and that of many, many others including your families, friends, peers and the majority of the public.
Capt GrangerEND OF GRANGER MEMO* * * * * * * * * * *The Planet continues to work on this story.
The Planet Appears on Vox with Kratka
— The Planet taped a show with Larry Kratka this morning to be aired at 11:33 a.m. on WBEC Vox AM 1420. We covered a range of topics, including the Pittsfield Colonials, the political situation in Pittsfield for Campaign 2011, and we plugged the upcoming forum The Planet is moderating, 7-8 p.m., at the Lenox Library, Tuesday, May 3.
NPR: More “ads” than “Commercial” Radio
— Driving into and out of Pittsfield, we listened to WAMC for some public radio, including the BBC, which is one of our favs. However, and there always is a however with NPR and its affiliate WAMC, the torrent of commercials — oh, we mean, “underwriters” — is cloying, annoying, and toying with our collective senses of broadcast purity. What does that mean. For years, public radio has been claiming moral high ground because it is “non-commercial.” That claim is a farce and now an outright lie. Underwriters (actually, “advertisers”) are flogged constantly, and not just with a mention. They get a mention, contact info, and blurbs — ad copy. It shoots down the case for federal funding of public radio. If the product is valuable, which we think it is, just make it commercial, like everything else is in public life these days.
“The Berry Chronicles: Part II in the Works”; BB, Take Cover
— The Planet has received an avalanche of feedback on “The Berry Chronicles.” That’s, wethinks, is a story with legs. Berry has posted on this site two more intriguing comments about life at the Boring Broadsheet. They shall form the basis of upcoming posts, along with revealing information The Planet continues to gather from the ever-increasingly frustrated BB editorial staff. The newsroom knows its a puppet of Andy Mick’s office. For any true newspaper guy or gal, that’s akin to a sentence at St. Laurent off the coast of French Guiana back in the day. The rest of the world knows the spot as Devil’s Island.
Later Today, “The Granger Memo,” Part 3
— Later in one of our adds today, the highly anticipated “Granger Memo,” Part 3. That will be the final installment of the memo PPD Capt. David Granger sent out to officers in light of this website’s reporting on SteroidsGate. We continue to harvest information from with the PPD, and, like chess, we will share as it benefits the position not of The Planet, not of the PPD, but of The Little Guy in town, who, everywhere he turns, is getting hammered today.
Will Berkshire County See $5 a Gallon for Gas? TEll us What You Think
— Speaking of getting hammered, The Planet saw $3.91 a gallon for regular gasoline at the BP station on the Pittsfield-Lenox Road, Rt. 7. Larry Kratka topped that, telling us of a $3.95 mark at a gas station on Merrill Road. What are the odds, or the over-under, on $5 by July 4? Any takers?
BACK LATER. “OPEN THE WINDOW, AUNT MILLIE,” AND LOVE TO ALL.