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Freeze! Kitty, Kitty!

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Freeze! Kitty, Kitty!

Cat cops, with their tiny helmet-mounted cameras, are at their best in stakeout situations.

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POSTED April 3, 2014 1:07 a.m.

Has the Manteca Police Department gone to the dogs and cats?! Not yet, but possibly soon according to sources. The state-funded group “Alternative Species Support Units” has tabbed Manteca as the site for its initial test run. The Alternative Species Support Units has been working for nearly five years on utilizing the talents of different animal species within the police force. “The cat is a wonderful option, sleek and much more covert, we seek to use their natural feline abilities to help aid us in day-to-day patrol,” A.S.S.U. Trainer Frank Drebin stated. The Cat has a longer “life productivity window,” and can in fact be productive up to 15 years. (Not to mention the cost efficiency of housing and feeding.) It is in a stakeout capacity that our future feline officers will truly shine. Equipped with miniature helmet-mounted cameras, they will be able to collect much closer and detailed intel than their canine counterparts. “We aren’t the first state to utilize the talents of non-canine species within the uniform ... a county in New Mexico has trained two falcons to track highway speeders in a remote desert area. High-definition cameras and radar allow them to sight unsuspecting drivers,” Drebin said. So the next time you think you see a stray, think twice, he may be one of the good guys!

• • •

Letters, Numbers, and Bears … Oh My

It was at a recent City Council meeting that the idea of changing the names of all downtown Manteca streets to a letters and numbers system was introduced. Lt. State City Planning Advisor I.M. Keating was the man hoping to encourage the change. “Manteca is a city nearing 100,000 people, most metropolitan cities (San Francisco, Sacramento and Modesto to name only a few) use this system to encourage commerce and sensibility,” Keating explained. He made further mention that Manteca is a centralized valley town, with many people transplanted from outlying metropolitan areas. “If you want transplants to spend money, it is necessary to simplify their travel habits. The corner of F and 16th is much easier for a newcomer to locate than the corner of Maple and Grant. It is how it’s supposed to be,” Keating said. The plan would involve all streets in between Union and Powers, and between Louise and Wawona being changed over the next five years. The Keating family was instrumental in the resurgence of Old Sacramento, and even suggested changing the name of the proposed area to “Old Manteca.” One unnamed City Councilman was overheard murmuring, “Maybe we can vote to change the name of the town back to ‘Monteca’ while we’re at it. After all, that’s the way it was supposed to be.” An initial proposal vote will take place on Sept. 31 this year.

• • •

Theme Park Hooray!

How great would it be to have a theme park in Manteca? The Forthe, Inger, Bow Company, a subsidiary of Six Flags, has shown interest in a parcel of land in South Manteca. The current Hat Mansion and surrounding 55 acres are the ideal location, according to F.I.B. Co. representatives Darrin Stephens and Larry Tate. Stephens and Tate met with the Manteca powers that be to discuss the possibilities. “There are nearly 1.5 million people in the surrounding Manteca towns, its Central Valley location makes it a bewitching travel spot,” Tate said. The park would not be the first “off the beaten path” destination they’ve built. In 2005, the F.I.B. Company built “Orange City Coasterland” in Mentiroso, Fla. That park incorporates various historical Mentiroso landmarks into the scenery – and they plan to attempt the same here. Stephens was prepared with drawings and blueprints of historical Manteca spots, earmarked for possible park consideration: A Spreckels Towers-themed Hotel, vintage Oakwood Lake slides, Pennebaker Amphitheater, Orchard Party Food Court. The possibilities are endless. The only hold up appears to be the City Council vote on Sept. 31 regarding the town’s possible name change.

“Before we start building rides, I want to make sure the people of Manteca are willing to take one ... and you just did. Happy APRIL FOOL’S DAY” Chris Teicheira (I wrote this on Tuesday, so it counts)

....and remember “It’s not Where ya do, it’s What ya do”


Manteca to a T columnist Chris Teicheira can be reached at

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