Five before Midnight

This site is dedicated to the continuous oversight of the Riverside(CA)Police Department, which was formerly overseen by the state attorney general. This blog will hopefully play that role being free of City Hall's micromanagement.
"The horror of that moment," the King went on, "I shall never, never forget." "You will though," the Queen said, "if you don't make a memorandum of it." --Lewis Carroll


My Photo
Location: RiverCity, Inland Empire

Monday, June 01, 2009

Election 2009: Paul Davis sends Frank Schiavone packing

Challenger Paul Davis pulls an upset!

There's no substitution for walking precincts while campaigning for office and going out and talking to people. One candidate, Davis did this tirelessly as did his supporters and made phone calls while the Schiavone camp appeared to rely mostly on sending mailers including those that were largely negative through the mail. But it's difficult for even an incumbent to win an election that way especially when there are neighborhoods in the fourth ward who felt disenfranchised by having a councilman that they felt was barely involved or made questionable calls in situations including those involving the DHL debacle that rendered many city residents unable to sleep at night for several years.

And this one didn't. The challenger who walked the streets and knocked on the doors to meet prospective voters in the city's largest ward was the one who prevailed when the last vote was counted. And that's the way it should be. Sometimes it's the hardest working candidate who brings out the most votes and wins the race. I spent most of Election 2009 being perplexed about the Schiavone campaign because there was a trip to Riverside County Superior Court to decide what the definition of a police officer was, there were negative mailers and then there nights and days spent by unnamed Schiavone supporters harassing anyone they perceived was their critic online. And this blogger and this blog were apparently the #1 target of this anonymous brigade, for whatever reason. But all that energy and venom aimed at me and several others could have been spent on the campaign trail and instead was pretty much wasted on juvenile and petty antics.

In fact, here were several postings just today. The first is about some anonymous person who thought I should pose naked as part of a new "civility".

Ok, ok, this site is out of control. We need to restore some civility here, folks. At some point we must agree to disagree in a civil manner.

Towards that end, I propose that Mary at Five Before Midnight post some pictures of she and the whole gang of one at the Riverside Press Club in some provocative poses.

Seriously, can't you feel the love that would be spread? Win or lose, it's an idea that deserves serious consideration. Maybe they could do a steamy shower scene!

The second was this one, accusing me of stalking, because I've been blogging for several months about this election. What's interesting about this guy, is that he's been cyberharassing me on and off for three years now. And I incidentally did not investigate Schiavone through court records, that was someone else but this individual had himself only one year ago while endorsing Bob Buster for county supervisor tried to circulate what he believed was "dirt" on the candidate he supported in his election. But this is a blog, not the National Enquirer.

Think about it,

Mary at FBM blogging day and night about Frank on her blog and investigating Frank's personal background through court records ...... THAT IS STALKING.

Jim Stewart documenting e-mails, gossiping about them like a little school girl, and purchasing the website that features some flake (talking about Frank instead of Jim doing it himself) .... THAT IS STALKING.

What if these two individuals who have no life, were to spend this much time and energy on YOU ?

If actions speak louder than words then...... THIS IS OBSESSIONAL CREEPIER THAN CREEPY STALKING!

But with all this energy and time being spent on campaigning through cyberspace if you can call it that, it doesn't leave you much time to walk the blocks of the neighborhoods of the precincts to get the vote to win an election and to learn more about what people really want and just as importantly, what they don't. If you're harassing someone over their breasts or bras or gasp, even personal hygiene, you're not out there knocking door to door canvassing an area for prospective voters. But then maybe in the case of these individuals, that's not a bad thing for the neighborhoods. Perhaps it wasn't the best thing for their candidate.

The mentality of the online postings didn't differ all that much from that involving the campaign. Apparently, Schiavone never walked a city block to canvass his own ward but relied on the mailer system to communicate with his prospective voters. But what many people really want is to meet to face on their turf with someone who wants to represent them and who listens to their concerns on the way. One candidate didn't think he needed to take the time or the shoe leather. Another one did and that made the difference in the end.

The final tallies for the Riverside City Council elections were available by 9 p.m. this evening and a huge celebration broke out at the campaign party being held by Ward Four candidate Paul Davis who defeated two-time incumbent Frank Schiavone by nearly 300 votes. Not long after 9 p.m. Schiavone placed a phone call to Davis conceding the election. Over 60 people cheered when they received that news from where they were sitting or standing. Also present at the Davis party were council members Mike Gardner and Chris MacArthur who congratulated him even as they had endorsed his rival. Gardner (who himself is a veteran of tightly run races) looked at the sizable margin that Davis had when earlier results came in just after 8 p.m. and said that it would be very, very tough for the provisional ballots to have enough of an impact and thus the race was over. Several police officers appeared as well, enthusiastically supporting Davis even though a somewhat fractured Political Action Committee from the Riverside Police Officers' Association went with Schiavone.

But not without casualties in the form of resignations from the PAC dating back some weeks. In fact, don't be surprised if this election has a reverberating impact on the RPOA in weeks and months to come, not to mention its twin, the Riverside Police Administrators' Association, which endorsed Schiavone, despite the fact that two of its own members Lt. Darryl Hurt and Tim Bacon had sued Schiavone and the city over retaliation over their involvement with the same bargaining unit. A closer look at the RPAA and Election 2009 might merit a future posting.

But the voters had spoken.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

In a stunning rebuke, city of Riverside voters tonight ousted Ward 4 Councilman Frank Schiavone out of office, denying him a third term on the City Council.

With all 28 precincts reporting, businessman Paul Davis ended with 3,907 votes or 52 percent of the vote to Schiavone's 3,563 votes or 47 percent.

Incumbents Nancy Hart and Andy Melendrez trounced their opponents.

Ward 6 Councilwoman Hart, 70, who captured a third term, ended the night with 1,271 votes or 59 percent of the votes. Amusement ride mechanic Bill Scherer got 702 votes or 32.8 percent of the votes cast, and retired pharmacy clerk Ann Alfaro received 165 votes or 7.7 percent.

In Ward 2, Councilman Andy Melendrez received, 2,228 votes of 69 percent of the vote. Retired Riverside County Sheriff's deputy Ruben Rasso, who was making his third run for a council seat, ended the night with 707 votes or 21.9 percent of the votes cast, and business owner Ahmad R. Smith got 291 votes or 9 percent of the votes cast.

The results mean that there is no need for a runoff election.

Davis attributed his victory to wearing out shoe leather.

"I couldn't have worked any harder than I did," he said. "Beginning in October I talked to between 4,000 and 7,000 people."

He said he knocked on every door in his ward, losing 14 pounds in the process.

Davis and supporters were looking at a computer screen on the patio Davis' 10,000-square-foot-house when the results appeared on the registrar of voters' Web site.

When the results flashed on the screen, supporters let out a whoop of joy.

Things were glum, as expected, at Schiavone's home.

Schiavone said he grew worried when some of his supporters who he called Monday night said they didn't bother to vote because they thought is re-election was a sure thing.

"They didn't take it serious," Schiavone said.

He said voter complacency led to what he said was a low turnout.

"It's a sad commentary and a sad day when this many people don't care."

Maybe that was Schiavone's view and low voter turnout is never a great thing when it happens, but it was clear at least at the Davis party that many people did care about their ward and their city and that the supporters who showed up were diverse in many different ways. They cared about this 14 point plan from a man who was portrayed as not having a political platform by his opponent. And they performed the arduous task of filling a mailin ballot and sending it in or dropping it off. Schiavone was part of the city council which wrote the language for promoting the mail-in election for the preliminary rounds of city council elections. It was his ball court, his serve, his election to lose and he did.

So what did many people at the Davis party care about? Here were some of the issues.


Paul Davis 14-Point Plan

1. Open the books at City Hall.

2. Reduce out of control spending and live within our means.

3. No new taxes.

4. Reduce our electric and water utility rates.

5. Campaign finance reform to limit amount of special interest money in elections.

6. Sever all ties with March Global Port and keep March for military use only.

7. Create more good high paying local jobs to get residents off the freeways.

8. Hold six Town Hall meetings every year throughout Ward 4.

9. Make our neighborhoods safer.

10. Welcome your participation at City Hall.

11. Protect open space & uphold Proposition R and Measure C.

12. Provide more recreational opportunities to give teens an alternative to gangs and crime.

13. Empower the Police Review Commission to accomplish their oversight mission.

14. Oppose use of eminent domain to transfer property from one private owner to another.

In the upcoming months and years, the people in Ward Four as well as city-wide will get to see whether progress is made in these areas or not and whether underlying issues which plague the city including in various corners get addressed or not as well, including several injustices which have been done. But this list is a starting point to see what can be done. The loss of Schiavone and the replacement of Davis should shift the dynamics on the city council very quickly and very definitively. Council members like Rusty Bailey and Nancy Hart will be looking for another leader to follow. Councilman Mike Gardner and Councilman Chris MacArthur will look towards taking steps to become leaders. Councilman Steve Adams will be the lone saber rattler, a reminent from the old guard that has now been essentially turned over by the city's voters.

Another strong factor in the city council races was the Bradley Estate Issue. Not just what the Press Enterprise's publishers reluctantly agreed to publish under outside pressure but the sense that this unethical and perhaps illegal incident was just the part of the iceberg that could be seen and that other problems lie beneath the surface of the water away from public view. That was a strong concern of quite a few Ward Four voters.

The election races ended early for Ward Two Councilman Andrew Melendrez and Ward Six Councilwoman Nancy Hart, who both carried their elections resoundingly as expected.

The Press Enterprise's election blog is a blow by blow account of the election night.

And I guess this is a parting shot by the person in Schiavone's campaign who was all agog over whether or not I wore a bra and other people's undergarments.


In the end, I have received way too much credit to me and my supposed posts. When you read a post here, it doesn't necessarily mean that all negative posts are from a specific person, as one person would like you to believe. I have witnessed several posts that have been credited to me that I know wasn't. You'll never know. Nor do I care anymore. Your supposition means nothing and really, you meant nothing in the grand theme of things.

There are, as I hoped, numerous possibilities now. I am excited. It's quite assuring to know you are in demand with many different facets to consider. I dreamed, but never imagined the support I received tonight. Thanks to all from the bottom of my heart. Specially to the one that made me cry (you know who you are).

Those that know me well know I've been making lemonade out of lemons for more years than I can count (something like 23). I am a strong person. I have to be, a very special person depends on me. Walk in my shoes for a week and I think you'd crumble. That's not a dare it's a fact. You know nothing.

So blog and suppose all you want. Your opinion is just that. About 25 years ago a wise person once said to me, before it was a cliche' - opinions are like assholes - everyone has one. So fact or opinion, blog to your heart's content. The rest of us will read it for the entertainment that it is. Not because it hit a nerve , but more because it didn't.

By the way ~ Gottschalks has an incredible sale! Even the undergarmets! TA TA!

Again. You know NOTHING.

Whatever. My blogging attracted dozens of nasty comments including the whole "filthy five" saga from this particular poster who is as you can see likely someone pretty high up in the Schiavone campaign circle. Perhaps someone who's looking for another job right now? Perhaps not. At any rate, no thanks for the invitation but I don't want to walk in the shoes of anyone who harassed me during this campaign. Not a pleasant place to be for sure but not for the reasons they think. People who harass aren't people who appear that strong to me. Most likely the opposite. As for crumbling? I imagine anyone would if they spent month after month writing cruel and highly personalized comments about people because most people are decent. They don't harass people with glee and then chalk it up to how difficult life is treating them.

But I will agree that it's nice to have people support you, as I've experienced that as well including last night and I'd like to thank all the people who have read my blog during the elections and sent positive thoughts and encouragement especially during a most difficult month when I have vertigo and it's been like trying to write while seasick!

Coming Up: Election 2009's Winners and Losers

Last chance opportunities to cast a mail-in ballot on June 2 were available. If you are a registered voter in one of the even numbered wards, don't forget to take advantage of them if you haven't voted.

A former Riverside County District Attorney's office investigator wins his case at the State Court of Appeals.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

Luis Bolanos, 48, of Cathedral City, got the declaration of factual innocence from a Superior Court judge in 2007. The ruling meant Bolanos' criminal history would be wiped clean and the booking records sealed and destroyed.

He sought the declaration even though the charges against him were dismissed at the time of a 2005 preliminary hearing. The charges stemmed from a September 2004 argument with his wife.

The state attorney general's office, which had handled Bolanos' case to avoid a conflict of interest, appealed. The Santa Ana-based 4th District Court of Appeal, Division 3, upheld the factual innocence ruling on May 21.

Among the charges Bolanos originally faced, the three appellate justices agreed there was "no credible evidence" for the charges against Bolanos. The decision can be appealed to the state Supreme Court.

The Riverside-based 4th District Court of Appeal, Division 2, upheld in July 2008 Bolanos' dismissal from the district attorney's office.

On the eve of a campaign fundraiser for the 2010 sheriff elections, Riverside County Sheriff's Department is refusing to make cuts yet is raising the salaries of management deputies. It looks like far from taking cuts at the management-heavy level, salaries are being raised instead in the midst of a huge county budget deficit.

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

The pay raises followed on the heels of a county resolution to cut benefits to managers, including chief deputies, and potentially cut compensation by 10 percent as a show of faith to get unions to agree to similar cuts.

Assistant Sheriff Peter Labahn said the pay increases, which total about $54,000 annually, were necessary to recruit and retain experienced and skilled chief deputies. County Executive Officer Bill Luna approved the raises, but supervisors Roy Wilson and Bob Buster said they were unaware of them.

Buster questioned the pay raises at a time when the county has frozen hiring, begun layoffs and could have to gut funding and staff in its smaller departments.

"By raising salaries at this point, we are faced with less money for deputies on the street," Buster said, adding: "To go and raise pay would seem to flout everything we have been talking about."

The county executive office is trying to plug a $130 million budget deficit for next fiscal year and is seeking about $66 million in budget cuts from the Sheriff's Department.

The Raises

Sniff has said his department would have no alternative but to lay off close to 600 employees, mostly rank-and-file deputies, and close Larry D. Smith Correctional Facility in Banning to meet that target.

"We must rethink our budget target," Sniff told supervisors at May 4 budget hearings, adding: "We're talking about cutting into quite literally bone and muscle."

Three days later, the Sheriff's Department promoted Gerald Williams from captain to chief deputy and boosted his salary from about $146,000 to almost $174,000, according to human resources records.

At the same time, the department increased the pay of two existing chief deputies, Lee Wagner and Rick Hall, to be equal to that of Williams. Wagner, a chief deputy since January, saw his $156,000 salary increase by more than 11 percent. Hall, promoted to chief deputy last year, received an almost 6 percent pay raise.

The alleged "cop-hater" Supervisor Bob Buster is the only one who seems to be questioning why the bottom level officers on the streets are facing cuts while those in management are getting raises, including several "chief deputies", among them former Riverside Police Department Captain and Riverside Community College District Chief Lee Wagner.Wagner joined the Sheriff's Department as a captain at the Jurupa Valley Station, leaving RCC's police department in the midst of an inhouse investigation while being handed off to interim chief and former University of California Riverside Chief Hank Rosenfield.

Not surprisingly, responses to this latest proposal are pretty heated.


You have to be kidding me. 7 deputy chiefs, 3 assistant sheriffs, 1 under sheriff and a sheriff. That makes a dirty dozen. How do they justify 12 people working at the top when all the work is done by line staff. I thought things were suppose to get better after Doyle left. The only way to fix that department is to bring a sheriff from the outside. We are back to the good old boys taking care of each other again. the deputies should walk out and let those high priced, so important staff work the streets. Board of Supervisors, where are you. Are you going to allow this. $174,000 a year, a take home vehicle, free gas, cell phone. They never use those vehicles to visit the troops out on the front lines. Unbelievable!!!!!

I hope they can run a jail or work the streets after the layoffs start. Must be nice to make $174,000 a year. I would love to see the Educated Idiots run a jail or work the streets. They need to really work for the money they make. Stanley Sniff I WAS a supporter of you, but now that support is no longer.

I Sniff some dirty politicing again. "The raises were approved by Bill Luna." Did he sneak another one in for himself again? These people can't ever seem to make enough money. What a BS excuse. I have never looked but I bet that other Sheriff departments do not have a top level staff the size of Sniff's.

"were necessary to recruit and retain experienced and skilled chief deputies."

- This is total BS! Where are they going to go? Who is hiring? Cities and Counties are LAYING off people, not hiring.

Do politics and public service mix in San Bernardino in the wake of numerous political scandals?

(excerpt, Press Enterprise)

Derry said that he will not allow any of his staff members to use paid vacation time to volunteer or work for his supervisorial campaign.

"I will not allow people to take vacation to work on my campaign," he said. "If they felt the urge to volunteer on a Saturday or Sunday to walk precincts, that's a different story. It is not ethical for my staff to take vacation time, which the public pays, to work on a campaign."

Derry said he believes his proposal to establish a county ethics commission could address political work on county time, which already is against county policy and state law.

"I believe an ethics commission could police that and provide direction and ethical guidelines," Derry said.

Although it was a campaign pledge, Derry said the creation of an ethics commission will require funding, and the county must first pass a balanced budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1.

Stern said an ethics commission would be a good step but voters need to do more to hold elected officials accountable.

"The big problem, I think, is the whole culture (in San Bernardino County)," he said. "People think they can get away with it."

A San Antonio Police Department officer plead guilty of criminal charges stemming from the death of another police officer.

(excerpt, KSAT)

Officer David Seaton was responding to a call on the city's northwest side on Nov. 28, when he struck another vehicle at the intersection of Potranco Road and Hunt Lane. At the same time, Officer Robert Davis was at the intersection clearing road flares from an unrelated collision. Davis was struck by Seaton's patrol car. David died several days later.

"Ultimately the facts show that Officer Seaton was traveling at approximately 102 mph at the time the collision occurred, and so it leads all of the elements of the offense of manslaughter," said Assistant District Attorney Cliff Herberg.

Did several San Diego Police Department officers collude with private investigators involving a divorce?

Should police officers drink while carrying weapons offduty?

(excerpt, San Diego Union-Tribune)

One tragedy involved the shooting death of a deputy's long-time friend. The two had been drinking excessively and were horsing around with the deputy's gun. The deputy placed the gun in his friend's mouth, and it went off. The friend was pronounced dead a short time later. The deputy was acquitted of a voluntary manslaughter charge, but his career over and his friend is gone.

This tragedy could have been prevented. It should have been prevented. We have to try and prevent things like it from happening in the future. We will do that with this policy.
Our new policy has been called one of the toughest in the country. Good. But let's be clear: this policy, like all others, is not without flexibility.

The president of the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs says the policy will put deputies at risk. I believe just the opposite will occur. I believe this policy protects deputies' safety as well as that of the public.

How can anyone say alcohol abuse by deputies is of no consequence to public safety?

You can't.

Are there going to be incidents where the use of alcohol becomes a secondary issue and therefore the policy not applicable? Most assuredly.

Steve Remige, the association president, likes to tout as an example an incident involving an off-duty New York City police detective who came to the aid of a beating victim and, after being shot at, returned fire, injuring the assailant. He then called 911.

Remige asserts this would be a violation of our new policy. Not so. He is engaging in scare tactics, hoping to turn deputies against this common-sense policy. Interestingly enough, it does not appear to be working. Deputies by and large understand the need for this policy and resoundingly support it.

They also know I wouldn't ask them to do anything that I wouldn't do myself. I just won't do that. After the arguments are made, points clarified, positions stated, everyone comes back to this basic, common-sense truth: Alcohol and guns don't mix. Putting truth to policy makes for a better, safer Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. No question about that.

Working to avoid a tragedy like that involving the fatal shooting of New York City Police Department Officer Omar Edwards by another officer.

Labels: , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home

Newer›  ‹Older