Former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner pleaded guilty this morning to three criminal counts related to the sexual harassment allegations that drove him from office after a summer of scandal.
Specifically, Filner pleaded guilty before Superior Court Presiding Judge Robert Trentacosta to one felony count of false imprisonment by violence, fraud, menace and deceit and two misdemeanor counts of battery. Sentencing was set for Dec. 9, and documents indicate he will get three years of probation. He will serve three months of home confinement but no prison or jail time.
Filner also must undergo mental health treatment, has agreed never to seek public office again and will lose a portion of his city pension.
The charges involve three unnamed women victims, with the following events this year, which Filner admitted to one by one:
On March 6, he used force to overcome the resistance of a woman at a fundraiser, violating her liberty. This incident resulted in the felony charge.
On April 6, he kissed a woman on the lips at a one of his “Meet the Mayor” events for the public, resulting in one battery charge.
On May 25, he went to a Fiesta Island rally and clean-up, and when a woman posed with him for a photo, he touched her rear end, resulting in the second battery charge.
U-T Watchdog reported earlier this month that a criminal grand jury had been empaneled to hear evidence of possible criminal charges against Filner, 71, who resigned from office on Aug. 30. At least two lawyers said that they had clients who were called to testify in front of the panel, with appearance dates later this week. The guilty plea indicates the impending proceedings may have provided leverage for a plea deal.
[Background: The women who accused Filner]
Allegations of sexual harassment against Filner have been investigated by the San Diego County Sheriff’s Office, using a special hotline set up for the purpose. The sheriff handled the investigation because the city police department reported to Filner. Similarly, prosecution on criminal charges was handled by the state Attorney General’s Office because of a conflict of interest. That is, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis ran against Filner for mayor last year.
Filner resigned from office under mounting pressure from allegations from about 20 women that he groped, fondled or otherwise acted inappropriately to them. Several of them described being put in the “Filner headlock” while he touched them inappropriately.
In addition to the criminal charges, he faces one lawsuit by his former communications director and one city claim from a parks worker. He left office after the City Council agreed to help with his legal defense related to those actions.
Gloria Allred, attorney for the former communications director, told U-T Watchdog by email, “He has abused his position of power and his position of trust and hurt many women. That is why on many occasions I urged the women of San Diego to contact the San Diego County Sheriff’s hotline if they had relevant information to report about Mayor Filner. I am proud of the women who did contact them. It is long overdue for him to be accountable in both the civil and criminal justice system and today is an important step forward in bringing Bob Filner to justice. His conduct as the mayor of San Diego was reprehensible and justice demands that he be punished for the harm he has caused to countless women who trusted and believed in him.”
City Attorney Jan Goldsmith, who is defending the city and Filner against Allred’s lawsuit, issued a statement saying, “Today’s action underscores the importance of Mr. Filner’s removal from office and will further help our city and the victims put this behind us.”
Separately, the Watchdog has reported, federal agents have made inquiries about Filner’s handling of a Kearny Mesa development by Sunroad Centrum Partners. The developer received a city concession after giving the mayor’s office $100,000 for favorite Filner causes. Any pending investigation of that matter is separate from the Attorney General’s charges regarding Filner’s alleged personal misconduct.
Filner was elected last year and served as mayor for nine months. He spent two decades as a U.S. congressman and, before that, served on the school board and City Council in San Diego. He also took part in the freedom rides for civil rights in the south in the 1960s.
A special election to replace Filner will be held Nov. 19.
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The same media that attempted to blame a mother of five in Wasilla, Alaska, for a mass shooting in Arizona (because of her use of standard crosshairs on a campaign map) is the same media that repeatedly described the shockingly lawless Occupy Wall Street movement as “mostly peaceful,” and is now attempting to persuade America that the anti-Zimmerman protests currently being ginned up by an NBC News anchor (MSNBC’s Al Sharpton) are also “mostly peaceful.”
Below is a far from comprehensive list of reported acts of lawlessness (violence, vandalism, trespassing, drug use, arrests, assault, etc.) that have been reported by various media outlets.
Please note that the media are very good at reporting specific incidents, and just as good at not connecting those incidents in order to ensure America is never told the full story…
While an anti-science media, Democrats, leftists, and some Republicans continue to stoke racial division without a shred of evidence that race had anything to do with anything, here is what is happening throughout the country in this cynical wake:
Note: Suspected incidents have been added and will be updated or removed as we receive confirmation.
10. July 16: Waiter struck in head with a hammer
11. July 16: Windows broken at Men’s Wearhouse
12. July 15: Store window spray-painted with word “revolt”
13. July 13: New York Giants star threatens Zimmerman
17. July 13: Gallery of death threats against George Zimmerman
18. July 15: “Kill Zimmerman” Facebook page removed
20. July 15: Dozen arrested in New York protest
21. July 15: New York protesters block traffic
22. July 16: Houston protesters block traffic
23. July 16: Police detain Houston protesters
26. July 16: Arrest in Oakland at anti-Zimmerman protest
31. July 17: Seventeen protesters arrested in Victorville
32. July 17: “Kill Zimmerman” graffiti throughout Hammond, IN.
33. July 17: Detroit overpass defaced with ‘Fuck Zimmerman’
Where’s the outrage?
Where are Al and Jesse?
Where’s Eric Holder?
Hammer time. Suspects Julius Bender, and Yahaziel Israel beat the victim with a hammer then dragged him from his car and beat him some more. (WFTV)
A Florida man was severely injured when black teens teens beat him with a hammer a month after the Trayvon Martin shooting.
The media has been mostly silent on this brutal crime.
October Freedom’s Blog reported:
A fifty year old man, race undisclosed, is on life support after a near fatal beating. Police have arrested two black teens. The attack occurred near the community where the Trayvon Martin self-defense shooting took place.
The victim is from Winter Springs, which is 88% white. The victim was attacked in nearby Midway, which is 94% black. Both communities are within about a six-mile radius of Sanford.
Hat Tip Mara
The victim’s father was searching for answers after the attack.
The Daily News reported:
A Jacksonville business owner is searching for answers following a vicious attack on his son almost two weeks ago in Seminole County,Fla.
Frank Slavin, the owner of Slavin Gallery in Jacksonville, told The Daily News Friday that his son Mark Slavin, 50, has been in critical condition and on life support at Orlando Regional Medical Center since the attack on March 26.
“It doesn’t look good for him, it doesn’t look good at all,” he said.
Slavin said his son, a graduate of Lejeune High School, has massive injuries to his skull after receiving 13 blows to the head with a hammer. He said Mark, who is single and a salesman for a furniture company in Orlando,Fla., was so badly battered that he was unidentifiable.
According to an arrest report from the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office, a man called 911 on March 26 to report hearing a man screaming for help. The caller said he saw two men pulling a third man from a vehicle and beating him with a hammer. The two dragged the man into nearby woods and continued to attack him, according to the report. The two fled the scene in the man’s vehicle before deputies arrived.
Julius Bender, 18, and Yahaziel Israel, 19, both of Sanford, Fla., were charged on March 30 by the sheriff’s office with attempted homicide, burglary with assault or battery and armed burglary in connection to the attack.
A tip received through the area’s Crime Line led investigators to Bender andIsrael, according to the release. Bender was identified through witness identification, and Israel was linked to the vehicle through forensic evidence.
It is not known how Mark Slavin is doing today after the brutal beating last year.
It is also not clear if this beating had anything to do with Trayvon’s death.
A severe blow for the freedom of speech, and victory for the advance of Sharia blasphemy laws here. “Michigan Federal Judge Allows Muslim Violence to Suppress Christian Speech; Immediate Appeal Filed,” from the American Freedom Law Center, May 14:
A Michigan federal judge today dismissed a civil rights lawsuit brought by several Christian evangelists who were violently assaulted by a hostile Muslim mob while preaching at an Arab festival last year in Dearborn, Michigan, which has the largest Muslim population in the United States. Video of the Muslim assault went viral on YouTube.
The American Freedom Law Center (AFLC) filed the lawsuit against Wayne County, the Wayne County Sheriff, and two Wayne County Deputy Chiefs for refusing to protect the Christians from the attack and threatening to arrest the Christians for disorderly conduct if they did not halt their speech activity and immediately leave the festival area.
Judge Patrick J. Duggan, sitting in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, granted Wayne County’s motion for summary judgment, dismissing the lawsuit. The judge also denied AFLC’s motion requesting that the court issue an order preventing the Wayne County Sheriff and his deputies from restricting the Christian evangelists from displaying their banners and signs on the public sidewalks outside of this year’s Arab Festival, which will be held in June. In the ruling, the judge stated the following: “The Court finds that the actual demonstration of violence here provided the requisite justification for [the Wayne County sheriffs’] intervention, even if the officials acted as they did because of the effect the speech had on the crowd.”
Robert Muise, AFLC Co-Founder and Senior Counsel, commented: “The First Amendment was dealt a severe blow today as a result of this ruling. Indeed, this ruling effectively empowers Muslims to silence Christian speech that they deem offensive by engaging in violence. And pursuant to this ruling, the Christian speakers are now subject to arrest for engaging in disorderly conduct on account of the Muslim hecklers’ violent response to their speech. In short, this ruling turns the First Amendment on its head.”
David Yerushalmi, AFLC Co-Founder and Senior Counsel, added: “This fight for our fundamental right to freedom of speech does not stop here. We have filed an immediate appeal of this ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. While Judge Duggan may have been the first judge to rule on this issue, he won’t be the last. Indeed, we are prepared to take this case to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary because it is imperative that our free speech rights not be subject to mob rule. This is the United States, not Benghazi.”
At least for now.
Good Freaking Grief. Does our media have ANY sense of standards anymore. The Lonely Conservative thinks not
In Michigan the union goons knocked down tents with people inside, destroyed a hot dog vendor’s table while shouting racial epithets, and pounded on the head of a conservative commentator. So, how did the media report things? The protest was “mostly peaceful.”
We’ve been using that “mostly peaceful” gag for some time now, usually stemming from the violent Occupy rallies in 2011. Of course any time leftists agitators erupt into violence,–which is pretty much any time they get together–invariably there’s always some lamestream media outlet that calls the violence mostly peaceful.
Yes, and yesterday was a mostly peaceful day at that mall in Oregon until a madman opened fire.
Of course, if there had been Tea Party rallies in Michigan, the media narrative would have been very different.
If you want to see the utter greed and selfishness of public sector unions look no further than Camden, New Jersey. Drug related violence and a high level of gang activity has made Camden the second most dangerous city in America.
Gov. Chris Christie has been working hard to put New Jersey back on firm financial footing. He has promised to balance the state’s budget by any and all means necessary.
Camden has a $26.5 million deficit that it must close. Lay offs are simply unavoidable in a situation like that. The logical and responsible thing to do is lay off those employees whose work isn’t absolutely critical to the city, right? Lay off the paper pushers first and then see where you stand. Only as a last resort would you cut critical positions like police, firefighters, paramedics, etc.
Not in Camden. The city council voted unanimously to lay off 400 workers, half of them cops and firefighters. That’s close to half the city’s entire police force and a third of all firefighters.
Meanwhile, the public sector union workers are free to sit on their fat, bloated asses and let the gravy train keep right on rolling. What a disgrace.
One union official had this to say about the cuts:
“If we agreed to everything that the city proposed in concessions, it would only have a minor impact on the number of layoffs,” Walco told the council members.
How much you wanna bet that’s a load of crap? This was purely a political stunt to try and damage Gov. Christie.
When it was over, Council president Frank Moran suggested they’re not to blame.
“We didn’t put a price tag on public safety. Unfortunately, the governor of the State of New Jersey put that price tag on it,” he said at the packed Council meeting.
That price tag is $69 million, in transitional aid. Moran suggested that Camden residents should vent to Governor Chris Christie.
We’re used to hearing liberals warn of having to lay off cops and firefighters, but we all recognize it as meaningless rhetoric. There’s plenty of people to get rid of before cops and firefighters. But Camden actually did it.
They’re playing politics with peoples lives. The public sector unions in Camden are going to have blood on their hands. How many citizens are going to be murdered, mugged, raped, or assaulted as a result of losing half the police force?
Moreover, how many people are going to be helped because a bunch of paper pushing bureaucrats get to keep gossiping around the water cooler?
Chris Christie should run an ad campaign touting the selfishness and greed of public sector unions. He should show the people of New Jersey that city workers don’t care about their safety.
St. Louis overtook Camden, N.J., as the nation’s most dangerous city in 2009, according to a national study released Sunday.
The study by CQ Press found St. Louis had 2,070.1 violent crimes per 100,000 residents, compared with a national average of 429.4. That helped St. Louis beat out Camden, which topped last year’s list and was the most dangerous city for 2003 and 2004.
Detroit, Flint, Mich., and Oakland, Calif., rounded out the top five. For the second straight year, the safest city with more than 75,000 residents was Colonie, N.Y.
The annual rankings are based on population figures and crime data compiled by the FBI.
A city watchdog is outraged that Mayor Dana Redd wants to double the top maximum salaries for three jobs.
The top salary for mayoral aides would jump to $150,000 from $71,000. Redd also wants to raise the maximum salaries for city attorney and mayor’s counsel, though not as drastically.
Her spokesman said the bigger salaries are needed to attract a qualified and experienced staff.
Watchdog Kelly Francis called raises for anyone during a recession in the impoverished city “insane.”
At ground zero of the police corruption scandal in Camden, prayers for a community’s rebirth are painted on boarded-up storefronts, fading old-timers drain bottles of cheap liquor on dirty porches, and young men waste away on trash-littered corners.
And nearly everyone in this Waterfront South neighborhood has a story about the officers at the center of the ongoing federal investigation.
“They were the dirtiest cops I ever seen,” said Keith Sartin, standing in front of a park at Broadway and Ferry Avenue.
Interviews with more than two dozen residents last week added emotion to the spare comments from authorities Friday, when former Camden Police Officer Kevin Parry pleaded guilty in the case.
Parry acknowledged his role in a corrupt police operation that has led to charges being overturned or dismissed in 185 drug cases. Parry implicated four other officers.
Since December, dozens of low-level drug dealers and drug users have been released from prison, and their stories – coupled with a review of the convictions vacated by the court since December – indicate the accused officers claimed the Waterfront South neighborhood as their territory.
The officers are being investigated on allegations that they skimmed cash and planted drugs during illegal searches and illegal arrests. Parry, 29, entered his plea in U.S. District Court, saying he and four other officers stole drugs, stashed them around the city, and bribed people in exchange for information in at least 70 incidents.
In some cases, he said, additional drugs were planted on people to increase the charges. He said he and other officers had falsified police reports and lied in court.
Base pay for Camden’s state-appointed chief operating officer is more than the mayor of Philadelphia.
Theodore Davis earns $220,000 compared to $167,436 for Michael Nutter.
Davis was the highest-paid person in New Jersey’s executive branch in 2008. He’s 26th when comparing total pay, which includes overtime and bonuses or incentives.
The 75-year-old retired judge also collects a pension of nearly $10,000 a month.
The COO position was created when the state gained control over Camden in 2002. The job carries the same duties as mayor.
Davis says he negotiated his salary with the state Treasury Department based on what he thought was fair. Davis says claims that he’s overpaid are “ridiculous.”
The Cartel is a hard-hitting exposé that shows how the union stranglehold on public education is destroying the lives of millions of children. Bad teachers can’t be fired because they have tenure. Politicians are bankrolled and controlled by the unions.
Behind all of the dismal tales of greed, graft and goons are real children stuck in failing and often violent schools. The film introduces us to 17-year-old Juan, a soft-spoken kid who played shortstop in high school and wants to open his own car repair business. After ten years in Camden, NJ public schools, Juan could not recite the alphabet, much less read. His math skills were slightly better; by the 8th-grade, he knew the multiplication tables up to four times four.
Students enrolled in a program called Community Education Resource Network (CERN) tell why they prefer it to the public schools they left. Some cite teachers who actually care about student learning, and others stress finally feeling safe at school. The contrast in funding is as stark as the attitudes of teachers and students. Instead of a $17,500 per student budget, CERN is run on a shoestring and a prayer. Teachers are volunteers, classes are held at a church, and the school uses textbooks thrown away by public schools. After working with kids who graduated from Camden public schools, CERN co-founder Angel Cordero has some pointed questions for district teachers and administrators: “For 12 years, what did you do with that child? What did you do with the money?”
There’s no easy way to say it, but Camden, New Jersey — a city right across the river from Philadelphia — has a reputation for being one of the poorest, most decrepit towns in the United States. Since the 1970s, the city has been the epitome of poverty with no solution in sight.
And when the financial crisis hit in 2006, Camden got hit hard. Really hard. Off highway I-676 at Exit 5A lies a place called Transition Park, better known as Tent City. The community even has an official website and they post strict rules for anyone looking to stay there.
If you think you’ve seen poverty, get ready to be shocked at what you’re about to see.
The library board in Camden, one of the nation’s poorest cities, is preparing to close all three of its libraries by the end of the year, saying its funding has been slashed so drastically that it cannot afford to keep operating.
Library officials are hoping enough money surfaces to save the system, but they’re preparing for a shutdown and say they’re not just threatening it as a ploy.
“Of all places, they’re one of the places that needs free public libraries the most,” said Audra Caplan, president of the Public Library Association.
The city of about 80,000 residents across the Delaware River from Philadelphia consistently ranks as one of the nation’s most impoverished. It’s a place where most families don’t own computers, where just one big bookstore serves the local colleges and where some of the public schools don’t even have librarians.
Camden Free Public Library is a major hub for many residents and draws 150,000 visits a year.
Raw sewage seeped into Jackeline and Eduardo Gonzalez’s basement, through its bathroom, hallway, and bedroom.
The fumes forced the family to eat outside and sent 1-year-old Eduardo Jr. to the emergency room three times with respiratory problems. The toxic flow burned holes in walls and ruined clothes and a sofa. The mold ended Grandma’s visits from Puerto Rico.
The sewage comes from a collapsed pipe at the end of their block, on Cherry Street in Camden. How does the city respond? For three hours, three days a week, a bored employee uses a noisy machine to transfer waste from the busted sewer into one that works.
This jury-rigged solution has been in place for more than a year.
Camden is so broke, so unable to perform the basic functions of government, that the obvious solution – repairing the century-old brick sewer system – is almost impossible to achieve, fiscally and politically.
Life in Camden wasn’t supposed to be like this. Seven years ago, New Jersey rolled out a revitalization plan that brought with it the biggest municipal takeover in American history.
After years of being subsidized by state taxpayers, corrupt and crumbling Camden would be taken over, repaired, and put on a path to self-reliance.
Then-Gov. Jim McGreevey gave Camden $175 million in bonds and loans, plus a one-time $7.5 million appropriation from the state budget, in exchange for an appointed chief operating officer to run the government and for gubernatorial control over the school board. His plan would create jobs, improve the quality of life, decrease crime, demolish all unsafe vacant buildings, lure new businesses, and, yes, mend sewers.
Five years later, when the recovery effort was first scheduled to be completed, the Gonzalezes bought a small rowhouse with money earned cleaning offices in Cherry Hill. But their odorous problem has now forced them to put that house on the market for the price they paid, $69,900.
So far, no buyer is interested.