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November 05, 2004

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Publication Date: Friday, November 05, 2004

News briefs News briefs (November 05, 2004)

Public safety building named for former chief Schatz

More than 100 people attended a ceremony on Monday renaming the police and fire administration building in honor of former police chief and mayor Robert Schatz. Schatz joined the Mountain View police force in 1950, becoming the first officer with a college degree, the first of many barriers he would break during his tenure.

After becoming police chief in 1971, Schatz hired Mountain View's first female officer in 1972 and its first black officer the following year.

"He was one of the guys to grasp the fact that law enforcement was changing and the police department was going to change with it if it was going to keep up," said police department historian Doug Johnson. Schatz also began placing a premium on hiring officers with a college education and encouraged current officers to get more schooling.

Schatz replaced Ron Packard on the city council in 1985 and won two additional terms, serving as mayor in 1987-88 and 1994.

Current Police Chief Scott Vermeer, Mayor Matt Pear, state Assembly member Sally Lieber and Council member Nick Galiotto, the last of whom served as police captain under Schatz, all spoke at the event. Signs commemorating Schatz and a monument in the front parking lot were unveiled. Schatz's widow Vivian and daughter Suzanne also spoke.

Murder trial delayed

The trial of three San Jose men accused of murdering an elderly Mountain View woman was delayed and will begin on Nov. 22. Enrique Chavez, David Olayo and Jose Sosa will plead their cases in front of Judge Diane Northway at the county's Palo Alto courthouse.

They are accused of breaking into the Jardin Avenue home of 77-year old Doris Condon and beating her senseless as they tried to escape. After a nearby gardener identified the suspects, Judge Paul Tiehl ordered the case to proceed to trial. Deputy district attorney Dan Fehderau said that jury selection could take up to a week, and the ensuing trial could last a month or longer.

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