Golden State Killer suspect arrested. Victims & timeline.

Do we finally know the identity of the Golden State Killer who likely killed 12 people and raped 50? Golden State Killer suspect arrested. DNA and other forensic tools—as well as a working group of amazing crim justice personnel—are the heroes of the hour. (In recent days, we've also been blessed with news of a hero during the Waffle House killings and a heroine pilot who safely landed a Southwest Airlines plane that lost a passenger 'cuz it lost an engine.) The Sacramento County district … [Read more...]

To “Check your privilege,” watch Dominick Dunne on the Justice Network.

As I write my current book, I'm outraged at the light sentences given to several of the privileged murderers I've gotten to know over the years. (I'm a criminologist and embrace the "check your privilege" movement.) For these reasons I've developed an affinity for Dominick Dunne. He's the late American writer, investigative journalist, and producer who covered the trial of his  daughter's murderer. Like me, Dunne was incensed at the verdict (acquittal of  2nd-degree murder charge in favor of … [Read more...]

Scary NFLer—victim of bullying, discrimination, or mental illness?

I'm disturbed and saddened that discrimination and/or mental illness has taken a serious toll on a bullying victim I've featured in prior posts.    Ex-NFLer Jonathan Martin graduated from Harvard-Westlake prep school in L.A. and then Stanford. He joined the Miami Dolphins in 2012. But during his 2nd year with Miami, he became the center of a scandal involving harassment and bullying on the part of his teammates Richie Incognito and Mike Pouncey.  Hero, villain, or fool? Things … [Read more...]

Male privilege, sex, and the fall of a cleft icon.

An op ed piece in Friday's Washington Post helped make up my mind re former congressman Trent Franks (R-Ariz.). The op ed author described a classic case of male privilege in action. The writer Melissa Richmond* is currently vice president of Running Start, an organization that encourages women to run for political office.   Richmond wrote that she thought she'd lost out on a career in politics after an encounter with Rep. Franks eight years ago. In her own words:I’ve always been proud … [Read more...]

How to be a friend of CLEFT HEART this Holiday season.

I published Cleft Heart in 2014, and since then thousands of readers and fans have enjoyed the book and showed great support through various social media updates and more. This holiday season, it’d be fantastic if you could use Twitter, Facebook , LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc.—and even blog posts— to further support the book and get it into the hands of cleft kids, their parents, and their caregivers. A simple way to do this is to order the book thru Amazon or Barnes & Noble and have it sent … [Read more...]

White economic privilege impacts crim justice system.

 White privilege statistics. I've been writing a memoir of late about how four murders seriously changed my career as a criminologist. So, how do white privilege statistics come into play? Well, among the many reasons the murders changed my worldview was the fact that the crim justice system treated the killers well. They were  all white and given remarkably light sentences  in comparison to black killers who committed similar crimes. This was back in the late 1960s and 1970s, … [Read more...]

Authors of THE BULLYING ANTIDOTE recognize local heroes.

Please join a writer friend of mine at an award ceremony recognizing East Bay, California heroes in bullying prevention.  Kristen Caven and her psychologist mom, Louise Hart, wrote The Bullying Antidote. More about this book later in the post.  To celebrate the completion of a 2-year book giveaway project, Caven and Hart will be honoring community leaders who are creating positive change.  Zorgos Awards.  The Zorgos Awards Banquet honors those who have the superpower of … [Read more...]