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Garden Grove Police Lt. Mike Handfield sends me a message about Theresa Dang

by Duane J. Roberts Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 12:07 AM

After ignoring me for days, the Garden Grove Police Department had now decided they wanted to talk. Wanna bet something printed in The Los Angeles Times over the weekend spurred their newfound interest in communicating with me?

On Wednesday, June 15th, a couple hours before I found

out that my good friend Theresa Dang received a letter

from the Orange County District Attorney's Office

charging her with a misdemeanor offense for something

she allegedly did at the May 25th demo against

Minuteman founder Jim Gilchrist, I sent an email to

Garden Grove Police Chief Joe Polisar clarifying a

quote that was published in The Orange County Register

that same day to make him fully understand what some

of my main concerns were regarding police behavior

during the night of the protest.

In this same email, I also notified Polisar that I was

very much "interested in obtaining copies of all

rules, procedures, policies, and protocols [the Garden

Grove Police Department] follows regarding the

handling of demonstrations and protests." I gave him

two choices: either he send these documents to my home

address via U.S. mail; or that I submit to him a

"formal request" for them under the California Public

Records Act. In other words, I was politely telling

Polisar that if he doesn't freely cough up the

documents I want, I will use state law to force his

department to release them to me.

As was expected, Polisar just brushed me off like a

fly. He didn't bother to email me back. That's fine. I

had a hunch he wouldn't be too interested in talking

with me anyways especially since I had succeeded in

getting The Orange County Register to cover the Garden

Grove City Council meeting that took place the

previous night. During public comments, several people

-- including Theresa Dang -- criticized the behavior

of the police.

But on Wednesday evening, I learned from Theresa via

telephone that she got a letter from the District

Attorney earlier that day informing her that they were

going to prosecute her on a "petty theft" charge. Then

on Thursday, June 16th, another person left a message

on my answering machine informing me that Garden Grove

Police had raided Dang's home in search of a

flashlight that apparently fell out of the pocket of

one of their officers on May 25th.

So what did I do? On Thursday evening, I decided to

interview Dang and write the article entitled, "GG

Police pursue phony criminal charge against woman hit

by Minuteman supporter". When I finished it early the

next morning, I proceeded to post it to dozens of

listservs and websites that reached tens of thousands

of people across California and throughout the United

States. I also sent this article to all my friends in

the corporate media as well.

Later that same morning, emails started coming into my

inbox from press people asking me to contact them.

Daniel Yi, a reporter for The Los Angeles Times, told

me his editors were fully committed to running

something the next day about the Garden Grove Police

raid on Dang's home. Great news, I thought! And The

Times did in fact publish an article: it appeared in

the Saturday edition. End of story? Nope. It's just

the beginning.

On Monday afternoon, I suddenly receive an email out

of the blue from a Garden Grove Police Sergeant asking

me to call him so we could meet personally and discuss

some of the matters I addressed in the message I sent

to Chief Polisar the previous week (something which I

have no intention of doing, incidently). Wow! Isn't

that remarkable? After ignoring me for days, the

Garden Grove Police Department had now decided they

wanted to talk. Wanna bet something printed in The Los

Angeles Times over the weekend spurred their newfound

interest in communicating with me?

But wait! It gets even better! On Tuesday, June 21st,

I get yet another message from the Garden Grove Police

Department. This one is very caustic, however. Lt.

Mike Handfield, the Public Information Officer, sends

an email to me basically condemning the article I

wrote about the raid on Dang's home which I posted all

over the internet last Friday. (an article which I

estimate has been read by tens of thousands of people

just in the Southern California area alone)

After careful thought, I've decided to make public the

message that Lt. Handfield sent to me not because I

agree with what he wrote, but because I'm rather

astonished by some of the things he says. The last two

paragraphs of his email are somewhat bizarre, in my

opinion. I've never seen something like this ever come

out of the mouth of a high-ranking police official

before. But I guess we all learn something new each

day, don't we?

Now if Lt. Handfield doesn't like the fact I posted

this email on the internet, too bad. The message he

sent me is not a state secret to be kept from the

general public. It's freely available to anyone who

files a California Public Records Act request with the

Garden Grove Police Department. In fact, almost

everything he writes is a matter of public record. If

you pay taxes, he is your servant. (although I know

that in reality, things don't tend to work out that


And besides, it's quite clear to me that the Garden

Grove Police Department want people to begin listening

to their side of the story. O.K. I'll be fair with

them. So here is what Lt. Mike Handfield, one of their

own employees, writes about Theresa Dang. Please

understand that I have reproduced the text of his

email as I received it in my inbox without any editing

or alteration whatsoever! Make of it as you wish!


Duane J. Roberts

X-Apparently-To: via; Tue, 21 Jun 2005 11:41:58 -0700

X-Originating-IP: []


Authentication-Results:; domainkeys=neutral (no sig)

Received: from (EHLO ( by with SMTP; Tue, 21 Jun 2005 11:41:58 -0700

Received: from localhost (openmail@localhost) by (8.11.6/8.11.6) with ESMTP id j5LIfw226195 for>; Tue, 21 Jun 2005 11:41:58 -0700

X-OpenMail-Hops: 1

Date: Tue, 21 Jun 2005 11:41:58 -0700


Subject: Theresa Dang

MIME-Version: 1.0



Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII

Content-Disposition: inline; filename="BDY.TXT" ;Creation-Date="Tue, 21 Jun 2005 11:41:58 -0700"

Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Content-Length: 871

Mr. Roberts,

I just read one of your articles on the Teresa Dang flashlight incident

and I see that you don't let the truth interfere with telling a good

story. This has never been a personal issue to the Garden Grove Police

Department, but you continue to try to further your cause by making it


Clearly, Theresa Dang did steal the officer's flashlight (on video)

which lead to the filing of charges against her. Clearly, she and

several others have lost perspective in their issue. When it comes to

these types of issues, you can be sure that we will enforce the law

equally, no matter the value of the loss. This flashlight is valued at

0.00 not .00. We work and prosecute cases all the time for less

than 0.00. Most of these incidents are not captured on video like

this one.

The decision to apply for and obtain a search warrant was based upon


Dang's lack of cooperation and the strong possibility that she would


allow us to search her home for the evidence if we politely asked her.


guess we were right based upon poor attitude when we contacted her by


As for leaving her home a mess. We took before and after pictures of


residence and I am told that Ms.Dang would not receive any good

housekeeping award. Infact, I am told that the investigators left the

residence in better shape that they found it. Again, because we knew

that Ms. Dang would most likely make this type of claim, we took that

extra step and took before and after pictures to disprove her false


Lieutenant Handfield

Public Information Officer

Garden Grove Police Department

Report this post as:

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 20 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
Does _anyone_ believe this? Fredric L. Rice Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 8:52 AM
Garden Grove police hunt for flashlight Is it at your house? Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 11:20 AM
You lie/she lies VIVA LA MIGRA! Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 1:54 PM
Re: You lie/she lies Publius Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 2:28 PM
Hey Duane... If you didn't lie or support liars...we may beleive your cause Unbiased_Va Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 9:15 PM
Theresa Dang will be acquitted OC resident Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 10:04 PM
Theresa Dang will be acquitted OC resident Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 10:05 PM
Theresa Dang will be acquitted OC resident Thursday, Jun. 23, 2005 at 10:06 PM
If you find yourself in a hole stop digging Hex Friday, Jun. 24, 2005 at 6:17 AM
Laughing! Fredric L. Rice Friday, Jun. 24, 2005 at 8:59 AM
injuries 1Planet1People Friday, Jun. 24, 2005 at 12:52 PM
it happened to me Hex Friday, Jun. 24, 2005 at 1:39 PM
SO NEXT TIME YOU'LL DO WHAT? Mr. Crumpled Fender Saturday, Jun. 25, 2005 at 9:47 AM
SPINNING YOUR ASSES OFF Caught Lying Again Saturday, Jun. 25, 2005 at 12:09 PM
Mexican Pro Illegal Immigration Advocate Caught Lying Big Dave Sunday, Jun. 26, 2005 at 10:53 AM
LA Times no leftist rag. Stephen Miller Wednesday, Jun. 29, 2005 at 10:34 AM
Truth and IMC johnk Wednesday, Jun. 29, 2005 at 10:09 PM
Concerned citizen john smith Monday, May. 15, 2006 at 9:33 AM
case close V Wednesday, May. 17, 2006 at 10:59 AM

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