LASD Pandora's Box

LA Sheriff’s Sergeant Convicted in Obstruction of Justice Case Asks to Be Sent Home from Prison for Treatment of Stage 3 Cancer

Celeste Fremon
Written by Celeste Fremon

On September 23, 2014, Scott Craig, a former sergeant in the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, was sentenced to 33 months in a federal prison for his role in the obstruction of justice case that led to the conviction of nine members of the nation’s largest and most powerful sheriff’s department.

In addition to Craig, those convicted included the once powerful second in command of the department, Paul Tanaka, and the popular former sheriff himself, Lee Baca, who was elected four times by large margins, until a federal investigation into brutality and corruption in the agency he ran for a decade and a half resulted in his downfall. Baca and Tanaka’s fall resulted in the conviction of six others who followed his and Tanaka’s orders.

Scott Craig was among them.

After Craig’s appeal to the 9th circuit failed, he surrendered to the Board of Prisons facility in Florence, Colorado, and began to serve his sentence on April 24, 2017. As of Friday, Craig has served twelve months and three days of his 33 month sentence.

On Wednesday, however, Craig—through his attorneys Muna Busailah, Stone Busailah and Robert Rabe—filed an emergency petition to the court for an immediate modification of his sentence to time served. Or failing that, Craig hopes to be released to serve out the remainder of his sentence on home confinement.


A bad diagnosis

Here’s the deal:

On December 28 2017, Scott Craig, who is now 54 years old, had a routine colonoscopy while in prison. The colonoscopy turned up a tumor, which was subsequently biopsied and found to be malignant. Craig has colorectal cancer.

On March 14, Craig had surgery to remove the malignant tumor, along with 11 inches of his colon.

Cancer cells were also located in at least one lymph node, according to Wednesday’s legal filing, thus elevating Craig’s cancer diagnosis to Stage 3.

This meant he needed chemotherapy, his attorney writes.

According to Craig’s lengthy court filings—which include multiple letters from his wife, who has moved to Colorado, to be nearer to Craig—there was an unnecessarily long lag time between his diagnosis in late December, and his surgery to remove the tumor in mid-March.

Now, according to an April 20 letter from Annette Craig that is included in the court filing, Scott Craig is waiting to be scheduled for chemotherapy. But, as of last Friday, he had yet to even see an oncologist, despite the fact that his surgery was completed five weeks before.

If there is further delay in starting chemo, write Craig’s attorneys, according to his surgeon such a delay could cause Craig’s cancer to progress from Stage 3 to Stage 4, at which point his general survival rate would drop from 69 percent to 11 percent.

If allowed to go home, his Kaiser Permanente medical insurance would allow him to be treated right away.


Cruel and unusual?

In the motion to reduce Craig’s sentence, the attorneys also write that the failure by the prison to supply necessary medical treatment is “cruel and unusual” punishment in violation of the eight Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

“Certainly when this court originally imposed sentence,” the motion states, “it could not possibly have foreseen that just a few years later, at the age of 54, Mr. Craig would be stricken with cancer—a disease where prompt medical treatment is crucial. Nor could the court have predicted that the BOP would be unwilling to assess the situation humanely, and promptly provide the necessary treatment and care for Mr. Craig.”

As of Thursday, there is no filing from the government, but the case has been assigned to U.S. District Judge Percy Anderson, who presided over the June 2014 trial in which Craig and his five “co-conspirators” were tried for obstruction of justice, and conspiracy to obstruct justice pertaining to the hiding of federal informant Anthony Brown from his FBI handlers, along with threatening witnesses and an FBI special agent, in a series of actions that came, unofficially, to be be called “Operation Pandora’s Box.

(You can read the main text of Craig’s filing here: 4-25-18 – Scott Craig — dec by Robert Rabe)


The other eight

Former Sergeant Craig, as mentioned above, was one of nine department members convicted in the obstruction of justice case, which unfolded in six separate trials.

In addition to Craig, former lieutenant Gregory Thompson was sentenced to 37 months in prison. Former lieutenant Stephen Leavins was sentenced to 41 months. Former deputy Gerard Smith was sentenced to 21 months. Former deputy Mickey Manzo got 24 months. And former sergeant Maricela Long, 46 received 24 months in federal prison.

Former LA County Sheriff’s deputy, James Sexton, the youngest of the nine, was tried separately—twice—for his part in the Pandora’s Box case. Sexton was sentenced in December 2014 to 18 months in a federal prison after being convicted of obstruction of justice. Then on January 12, 2017, in surprise decision, Sexton was released into six months of home detention followed by another six months of formal probation on January 12, 2017. (The details of Sexton’s release are too complicated to explain here but you can read that story in WLA’s previous coverage.)

The longest prison term went to former undersheriff Paul Tanaka who is, at present, serving a five year sentence in Florence, Colorado. The once feared and powerful second in command of the LASD appealed his sentence to both the 9th Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court, but both turned him down.

Former Sheriff Lee Baca, is out on bail pending an appeal to the 9th circuit. On May 12, 2017, Baca was sentenced by Judge Anderson to three years in federal prison.

Baca’s “fall from such heights is tragic for many reasons,” Anderson told the packed courtroom last spring in a fierce prelude to the actual sentencing. Yet however painful Baca’s fall might be, the judge said, it was not enough to counter balance the necessity to hold the former sheriff accountable.

Lee Baca will be 76 on May 27 of this year. He has been diagnosed with early stage Alzheimer’s Disease plus the beginnings of dementia, both of which are progressive, and can only be slowed down, not cured.

Yet, “Alzheimer’s disease is not a get out of jail card,” Anderson told those in the packed courtroom before he announced the sentence itself.

If not for Baca’s “cognitive impairment,” said Anderson, and if not for his career in public service, “you would have received the same [five year] sentence as Mr. Tanaka.”

As mentioned above, it is Judge Percy Anderson who will hear Scott Craig’s emergency motion.

More on Mr. Craig’s situation as we know it.

108 Comments

  • I am not a fan of ICIB, because there are plenty of crooked sergeants like Mr. Craig, who conspire to either exonerate or implicate an individual in a crime for political gain. I assume there are some, ICIB sergeants, interested in finding the truth, and present the facts without bias. I feel sorry for Mr. Craig, he should be given the opportunity for survival. Cancer does not care what the person has done.

    The so-called “justice” system made an example out of these individuals, yet, under the current regime, “fresh-eyes McBuckles,” things are worse. Higher ups continue to get away with corruption and get promoted, while ICIB fabricates cases against little field/custody deputies, to give the semblance that, “misconduct will not be tolerated”

    They elevate crooked executives, while they turn working deputies into homeless and felons. Here is the story, fresh from the press: https://www.nbclosangeles.com/investigations/Senior-Los-Angeles-County-Sheriffs-Staff-Target-of-Previously-Undisclosed-Criminal-Investigation-481009471.html

    • Scott was not a “crooked” sergeant. He did what he believed was correct based on direction from his superiors. At most, he made a mistake in judgement trying to get to the truth about how the phone was smuggled into the jail. The FBI broke state law when they did do. They are not above the law.

      I was Scott’s supervisor at the Criminal Courts building for a couple of years. He was hard working and honest. He needs to be released so he can get the potentially lifesaving medical treatment he needs.

  • The high ranking officials, who were all at one time assigned to NCCF, were investigated under the theory they had created the policies, and had caused the installation of hardware inside special cells, that enabled the alleged abuse, a Sheriff’s official who was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly told NBC4.

    One of the accused was promoted to commander and was placed in charge of all of the Sheriff’s internal affairs units during the course of the investigation, according to a law enforcement document.

    “These incidents were discovered during a routine internal audit by command staff and we determined that they could have been handled better,” the Sheriff’s Department said in a written statement Thursday.

  • The quote/answer from the LASD would be accurate if it read, “It will take another 2 weeks to alter the documentation, then we can give it to you.”

  • Hey Witness LA. Do you know that gang members are responsible for over 80 percent of all assaults and murders in the greater Los Angeles area? What do you think about that?

  • Paul Tanaka, what a piece of work. I hope his time is being served like a slow drip from an institutional shower head. I feel for Craig, I hope this all works out for him. I wonder how many of the hardcore Tanka followers who McDonnell has promoted to Captain, Commander and Chief, are still writing Paul, thanking him for his continued support and guidance. Maybe they are even throwing a few bucks on his books for store.

    • Truly tragic as James was used and abused by the FBI, Tanaka & Company (which included ALADS).

      Karma is still making rounds.

  • JoeNo Buckles…you truly show how clueless you are with this statement: “Craig was following orders, which he should have known were dangerous, unethical and possible criminal. He did it thinking he would get promoted to a higher rank, or afraid, he was going to get demoted. Yet, he still had a choice, and that is his fault” Scott had no idea that going to question an FBI agent who had facilitated the smuggling of contraband into the jail would blow up the way it did. Craig was and still is an honorable public servant who got caught in the middle of a huge feud between agencies. Shame on the person who references the Craig Family tragedy 13 years ago. By the way…how about not hiding behind an asinine alias?

    • With all due sympathy to Scott’s illness, the fact is that he tried to intimidate FBI Agent Leah Marx with that “bullshit of a lie” about a warrant. He knew what he was doing.

    • I agree with you Mr. Walker, thank you for sharing your point of view. The day McBuckles tells the FBI and the DOJ to go f***k off, they will also go after him, should all fail, the FBI would say McBuckles made false statements.

  • @Joe NoBuckles you couldn’t be farther from the truth when it comes to Scott’s, and his partner Mari Long’s, involvement in the case. They were tasked with contacting the FBI “agent” who illegally introduced a cell phone into MCJ. They contacted her outside her house requesting to interview her and she declined. She was then told a warrant may be sought for her arrest. Investigators refer to that tactic as a ruse which is legal, but the Feds decided they were obstructing justice by contacting her and “threatening” her. By the way, the entire approximately 3 minute contact was video taped by ICIB. I have known and worked with Scott for over 30 years and he was not and never had been a climber or leg humper looking to get over on anyone. Being an investigator myself, I would have used the same tactic given the opportunity. He and his family, just like the families of the other deputies, sergeants and lieutenants who were convicted have suffered enough for the crimes of the 2 who were at the top and let their “pissing contest” with the FBI cause all this to happen.

    I do agree that there needs to be a change in leadership within the LASD and hope the voters turn out in June to make that happen.

    • Scott’s friend, again I agree with what you are saying, they were doing what the crooked regime told them to do. Same today, if you are at ICIB, the same is happening, you are being ordered to make cases against your own kind.

  • EDITOR’S NOTE:

    I truly apologize for missing Cynthia’s comment that referenced Scott Craig’s family. I have belatedly taken it down. Cynthia, I imagine you meant well, but surely this family is dealing with enough right now. Bringing up unimaginably painful personal blows of the past is just not our business here. Nor should it be.

    Please let’s stick to the subject at hand.

    Thank you for understanding.

    C.

  • I wish Mr. Craig and his family all the best in dealing with such a horrible illness. With regards to his fate and other subordinates wrapped up in the Baca/Tanaka/FBI/DOJ “circle jerk”, the lingering precedent set is for one to never blindly trust an order given by a “superior”…a term I use loosely.

    LASD will never be the same when you consider how easily and willing it’s executives were (and sill are) in “selling it’s low level workers down the river”.

    Shameful, self-serving and piss-poor leadership starts and is empowered from the top.

  • The foundation of several federal criminal trials resulting in convictions of LASD Deputies, Sgts, Ltnts and the former UnderSheriff and Sheriff of Los Angeles County was an obstruction of justice scheme known as “Operation Pandora’s Box”.
    The subject of “Pandoras Box” was an MCJ inmate named Anthony Brown.
    Mr. Brown did not appear and did not give testimony at any of the trials.
    His current status in the California Prison system makes it virtually impossible for anyone, news journalists and documentarians included, to interview Mr. Brown.
    Interesting.

  • If the FBI had asked my advice on getting someone inside MCJ for the purpose of investigating patterns and practice of deputy abuse against inmates, i would have have suggested –
    select a person who is motivated, meticulous, credible to send in undercover as a low-level arrestee unable to make bail.
    In short time, that person will be on the jail trustee work assignment list allowing them to circulate around the facility and providing access to communicate with inmates and jail deputies beyond their own specific housing assignment.
    The Justice Dept. has more experience and expertise at this kind of thing than I do.
    They decided to place their resources with an inmate carrying a life sentence for aggravated robberies, which made his credibility as witness at any potential trial highly defective from the start.
    That probably was not a big concern for the FBI, since Anthony Brown’s conviction status meant he would be confined to his cell almost 24/7 and be subject to the highest level of restrictions on movement and association within MCJ.

    • You don’t need anyone undercover from the FBI or anywhere else, just ask those who work at the custody facilities specifically MCJ. That would include Nurses, Teachers, Clergymen and Counselors. You can comb the numerous rubber stamped reports with all of their inaccuracies and see the malicious pattern of assaults.

  • After Lee Baca withdrew his original plea deal before Federal Judge Anderson, he subsequently presented his new legal team.
    Former Federal Prosecutors Nathan Hochman and Tinos Diamantotis would be tasked with carrying out Baca’s defense during an actual criminal trial.
    This was August 2016.
    Does anyone know why Tinos Diamantotis was standing one step behind and at the shoulder of Sheriff Lee Baca on January 7, 2014 while Baca made his surprise retirement announcement?

  • Amazing, what a empathetic crowd. Funny how when the criminal does not have a badge, you want to throw the book at him. When he has a badge, your heart bleeds. Had it been some brother with saggy pants, you would have been singing the Baretta theme song, cancer or no cancer – Don’t do the crime, if you can’t do the time.

    Based on what some of you have previously posted, prisons treat criminals quite well. In fact, many of you complain how great they have it – free room, board, health care, television, etc. That is state prison. This man is going to federal prison, a resort of sorts, so some of you would say. I say treat him like any black kid sentenced to prison, no worse, but no better. Stage 3 is a far cry from stage 4, man up and accept responsibility.

  • CF – The majority of these cops are Ex-High School loser’s who got a second chance to be cool by graduating from the a academy and getting a badge and a gun. Imagine that CF. So now that girl that couldn’t stand the sight or smell them is now intrigued when he show’s her his badge and takes her on a date to the shooting range. Now he’s making upward’s of 5k a month, a pension or 2, and receiving FREE benefit’s. That is law enforcement in a nut shell for you! When the inmate’s disrespect him they’re gonna get it! Back in high school that had to run home with their heads between their legs but now that they have the gun & badge and have been given a green light by their Sr. Officer (who is usually looking to be buddies with the younger officer’s) to beat the crap out of an inmate or kill a someone as long as they can show an “EXIGENCY”. (exigent circumstances is their get out of jail free card). This Major Kong character is so pathetic it’s almost laughable CF. Street rules – its usually the loudest mf that always has something to say that is the real bitch and the quiet one’s are the one’s to keep an eye on…In short the culture of law enforcement is a group of ex-loser’s who got a 2nd shot at being the bad ass that they weren’t back in high school and as long as those ppl are being given a badge & a gun plse beware….

    • I’m not shocked by CF’s comments but hope you and your family members “man-up” as you say if you ever are inflicted with an illness such as Cancer. No one on the side of law and order would ever say prisoners, inmates or convicts are or should ever be getting premium housing when millions of homeless or poor people don’t have a place to sleep or access to medical care. It’s you and your type who have bleeding hearts for criminals, champion the disrespect for authority at the expense of hard working law abiding citizens or the most neglected and forgotten party to all crimes ….THE VICTIMS.

      It appears you have a “brother from another mother” in the poster Reckning. Sounds like a bully, that evolved into a criminal who has had considerable contact with law enforcement, the wheels of the criminal justice system and jail/prison. A lot of hate festering there for a failed life. Interesting how you know so much s out Officer pay, benefits, pensions? Couldn’t get hired I guess?? Reminds me of the criminal who always blames the cops for catching them committing a crime.

      Oh..I’m sure you think no one ever breaks the law and cops are only out their planting evidence on all those innocent “brown and black” choir boys. Get a life…cops have better things today and many are better educated and smarter than you think.

      The Pathetic Duo…

      • “reckoning “is just the cf troll using another name . He does this from time to time, even argues with himself occasionally. He’s been getting progressively nastier lately. A few stories back he was justifying the ambush murder of police officers in Dallas, even making jokes about it. Looks like he’s moved on to cancer jokes, what a strange emotionally crippled little man he is.

  • CF and Reckoning, I am gonna agree with you that there are some cops that were ridiculed and bullied as high school kids. Some were also bullied as new boots in the police force, and the sheriff (James McBuckles) himself comes to mind as a cop you are describing. McBuckles, for instance, was not very skillful nor motivated while doing his job. He developed hate and resentment toward his partners and vowed revenge. Apparently, he was just interested in politics, promotions and of course, money. McBuckles is the perfect example of what you referer as to an “Ex-Highschool loser.” The sheriff with his bigger badge is now punking little deputies, by getting them fired and prosecuted with the help, of course, his friend, Jackie Lacey. They fabricate petty cases against his deputies just as some cops you describe, fabricate cases against “the brothers.”

    I am not advocating for any officer to be prosecuted, yet, there was an LAPD officer that even the LAPD chief believed, he should have been prosecuted, but, nope he was not. Instead, Jackie Lacey has been prosecuting “brother” and brown deputies by the hundreds for false allegations the deputy(es) stole a pair of glasses, or a shirt out of a house or car during a search. Zero evidence that it happened, but just to show the false pretense of “Justice and Reform.” Yet, sheriff McBuckles promotes true criminals to work for his executive team. There was an executive driving a GTA, however, he was not charged with anything, but allowed to retire peacefully.

    CF and Reckoning, when the two top County Cops are engaged in what you describe, what do you expect from some at the bottom? You should scream at them, screaming your hate at the people at the bottom, I don’t think can effect change.

  • >WLA edit. Dial it back, CF

    Conspiracy, “disrespect of authority” is not a crime. Please stop whining. You are right, people have less respect for the good folks in uniform. Its not what it used to be, and you can’t get away with smacking people and arresting them for resisting arrest. Some of these kids will call you a pig while the iPhone is recording. Those Adam12 and Dragnet days are over.

    Ownership, thank you for correcting Reckoning. I was afraid people might get the impression that I was wrong about the generous salary and benefits one can get while wearing a badge. Be honest, where else can you make that kind of money, without OT? No wonder you wont leave despite the public calling you a pig, “disrespecting” you and your constant complaining about the job. You will not have it that good elsewhere. Thank your union.

    • I stand corrected…I hope you or someone close to you does contract a catastrophic illness. Karma….

  • CF and Ownership I was talking about “starting salary” Im sure ownership that you did’nt start off as a day 1 recruit making over 100k unless u came on with an advanced POST and a Doctorate degree…Swerving onto this PC rat major ding dong who probably never saw a vagina (in real life) until he paid for it. I don’t even need to see ur face to profile u. Ur that unknowingly conservative kid that wanted everyone’s attention so u kissed everyone’s ass. No u have gut’s bc u got the badge and gun. Ur a fuckn joke. Ur trolling CF and she’s just reporting facts and responding to ur foolish comments. Go to the fox news website and take ur place in comment section as a cpu gang banger…

  • CF: “Thank you Union.”

    Reckoning: I couldn’t comprehend your Snowflake-Gangster, Welfare Collecting dribble, so unfortunately I can’t respond.

  • I am going to ask a few questions to Sgt. Craig’s friends at Internal Criminal Investigation Bureau, (ICIB). You guys defend Craigs’s actions as just doing his job as instructed.

    There are currently, under “fresh eyes McBuckles and the lady at CPA, several cases where deputies have been framed into a crime by some investigators. Some of those investigators’ names have come up on numerous questionable investigations. Some of the techniques allegedly used “to ruse” deputies into a confession, are: “you are just a witness”, “if you confess nothing is going to happen” etc, etc… These investigators allegedly coached witnesses, to say what is needed, they twisted statements and actions to fit the narrative they want to obtain. They engage in the destruction or manufacturing of evidence.

    I have asked people in the know as to why these ICIB guys are doing it. The answers I get are that they are being ordered by the lady at the CPA to do it or else. Now, knowing what happened to Craig, shouldn’t you just say “NO” to the lady, and transfer out of ICIB, or do you guys enjoy screwing other deputies, by presenting a shoddy, biased investigation to get the brownie point? You guys have destroyed hundreds of deputies lives under this crooked regime, why is it so worth to you?

    Imagine tomorrow there is a regime change, aren’t you afraid the new regime may come after you, well knowing there is plenty of evidence to bring some of you at ICIB for charges of obstruction of justice, lying on a police report, coaching of witnesses and destruction of evidence to say a few?

    Just curious what you guys think….greetings.

    • There is more backstabbing within LASD than there are “hits” by the Mexican Mafia. Not only by executives but line deputies also, which widens the division of the so called Brotherhood.

      • Dos Centavos, unfortunately, it is true. Once a friend told me, don’t worry about that criminal killing you, or getting you in trouble, it will probably never happen. Worry about your partners, your supervisors, there will be one, who has it for you, and at that first opportunity will stab you in the back. Yes, they will use a complaint or false allegation by a criminal or complainant. Some of your partners are like JUDAS, he said, they will kiss you on the cheek, and stab you in the back at the same time.

        It appears that is how some of these cases start. A minor false allegation which they turn into a major one, just because of personality issues, because of race, political affiliation, etc…You would think some people with common sense at the top would see it and stop it, nope, they feed the false allegation testosterone. Instead of uncovering the truth they bury it further.

        I have asked people in really high places, why do you allow a deputy being screwed up when you know they are innocent? The answer, well if say or do something, it would appear as if I am obstructing justice. They all have an explanation as to why is good business screwing deputies under this regime…

        • The midsection of your post describes exactly the backdrop of Armando Macias’s trial against ALADS this month. After witnessing the dog eat dog mentatlity of cowardly deputies and greedy attorney Dick Shinee, I joined LASPA. It’ll be interesting to see how the Sheriff election fans out in June with with all the different angles & corners.

  • Perhaps all these folks were once good and honest? But, we can all agree that (if they were good and honest) something went terribly wrong along the way. Baca, Stonich, Waldie and Tanaka all had ways of enforcing conformity onto department members. First, giving away questions to test(bribes) and if that didn’t work then false accusations enforced by pitiful investigators. All this was brought it to the attention of all, but ignored. From witness accounts to visiting prostitutes to covering up crimes and retaliation cases. A once great organization was thrown into the toilet by the men listed above.
    C: Maybe it would be worth interviewing some of the crooks above? And where is Baca now re the legal issues?

    • I am writing here as an outsider and an observer from a distance of our LASD.
      The dysfunctions which became institutionalized in the organization are a direct reflection of the unresolved nuerosis and insecurities which lie deep in the psyche of Lee Baca.

      When Baca became Sheriff, he allowed the authority of the position to reinforce his self-image as a modern-day prophet.
      He wanted to view deputies as not just employees, but as disciples.
      Sheriff Baca had a special place in his heart for the defective deputy.
      Baca realized some of his most impassioned moments when he felt called upon to protect and shelter the defective.
      He was concerned that a deputy could suffer irrepairable damage if he was forced to drink from the poisoned waters of punitive discipline.
      Baca believed he could save the defective deputy from his own scruples by applying proto-Scientology remediation.
      In December 2011, Sheriff Baca inaugurated his new Deputy Leadership Institute and offered a radical new approach to employee discipline.
      If a deputy got caught in violation of employee rules, he was not forced to accept punishment measured by taking days off work without pay.
      He would now be offered an opportunity to attend DLL coursework instead of staying home from work. And he would continue to receive all of his regular pay.

      So it eventually came to pass that the defective deputy was embraced by the organization and the perfected deputy became an anethema.
      A deputy who messed-up and got into trouble would be able to sit in an air-conditioned classroom and get paid to study great works of literature and philosophy with instructors like Sheriff Baca.
      The deputy who stayed out of trouble was left pushing a patrol car around the san gabriel valley in 104 degree heat in the middle of september.
      And the perfected deputy – the one who knew the book from cover to cover and followed it without exception, the one who kept a spot free employee record – could not survive in LASD. Everyone in the organization must carry a blemish on their record, must commit some violation to remain on the team.
      The organization could not tolerate perfect integrity.
      It felt threatened by the practice of excellence in everything.
      It would need to get dirtied, to participate in a corruption, in order to be accepted.
      For example, Deputy Josh Sather.

        • The LASD is worst today in that the Sheriff cannot longer say he did not know. Although, McBuckles claims ignorance often times to escape responsibility, we now know he lies. McBuckles is doing exactly that, using the techniques employed allegedly by the deputies at the TTCF. McBuckles used the techniques to frame his own deputies into a crime, by falsifying reports, twisting facts and actions to obtain the desired result. Heck even if deputies asert their right to remain silent, their silent is twisted and interpreted as proof of guilt.

      • For the WLA reader who may not remember the story of Josh Sather it can be Googled: Josh Sather, LASD.

        Marlin Cabinogh: thank you for reminding us about his story; it truly needs to be told & retold, and never forgotten.

  • Funny how the troops rally to the defense of a convicted felon when he once wore a badge. And, reading the thread one gets the impression that all of the deputies are good, law abiding officers and only the hire ups are corrupt.

    Mr NoBuckles says the following, “Some of the techniques allegedly used “to ruse” deputies into a confession, are: “you are just a witness”, “if you confess nothing is going to happen” etc, etc… These investigators allegedly coached witnesses, to say what is needed, they twisted statements and actions to fit the narrative they want to obtain. They engage in the destruction or manufacturing of evidence.” These are the same complaints the community has against the rank and file – that they lie, twist statements, bully people/”witnesses,” misrepresent on the police report, destroy evidence or worse, manufacture it. How many times have the fine officers shot a brother, only to “find” a gun after the fact. Sounds like you eat your own. Regarding officer Craig, all I can say is good riddance.

  • Can we say “fuck you” here Celeste? I need you to remind me. If not humor me at least for a moment on how my saying that to a poster wishing death on someone you posted an article about is worse than their wish of death? I mean it’s your article after all.

  • Just trying to play by the rules, Celeste loves to delete my posts but let the two little girls yap it up, just want to make sure.

    • Two adjectives I have used to describe cf (in previous comments) have been “effeminate” and “hysterical”. I find “reckoning” to be the same, I assumed it was the same guy, because the styles were so similar and so obviously different from every other commenter. But a pair of social justice warrior females? That’s certainly possible. Friends of Celeste? Answers a lot of questions, no denying they have been allowed the greatest possible leeway,don’t want to say Celest is in on it, but…

  • CF unfortunately you are right, when I was a young deputy at the Men’s Central Jail, inmates used to say they were framed by the police. I thought they were crazy. I now have seen a few ICIB report where that is exactly what they did to these deputies. The investigations are biased, shoddy full of incinsistencies, the witnesses stories don’t align, but they twist things to make them align. No evidence, and if there was, it was destroyed or manipulated against the deputies.

    Pretty scandalous to say the least. Now, the shocking part is that these cases are being made under fresh eyes McBuckles and directed and orchestrated by the lady at CPA, are they going to play ignorance? Nope, they will get creative and spin it just as politicians do.

    So we could argue that some “brothers” get shot so a deputy gets “inked” or deputies frame inocent career criminals for a noble cause, to get them off the streets.

    Likewise, McBuckles frames his own innocent deputies to gain political fame as a “Reformer” Yes big dog eating little dog.

    CF if this gives you any consolation, most of the deputies framed into a crime, prosecuted and fired are “brothers” and browns. Make of this fact what you please.

  • Will the rift between ALADS President Ron Hernandez and Bob Lindsey give cause ALEX VILLANUEVA the endorsement for Sheriff? We’ll soon see.

    Go Alex!

    • I don’t know of any deputy who goes to work feeling safe, motivated to do their work under McBuckles, I am talking about the working deputies. I assume there are some with their cush spots enjoying life, humping McBuckles legs, like little chihuahuas.

      What is remarkable, is that deputies don’t seem to care about effecting change. This was an opportunity for deputies to send a vote of “NO CONFIDENCE” against McBuckles, but they failed.

      Let’s not forget that historically there has been a vote apathy amongst deputies when it comes to ALADS elections. Most deputies acquire that voter apathy as new on the job, when they are told, you are “too new” to have an opinion. Many deputies doubt their ability to make a difference.

      Now the ALADS people didn’t make it sound like, let’s have a “VOTE OF NO CONFIDENCE” they framed it as a survey, an inquiry as to whom to endorse for Sheriff. It does not sound as interesting when worded that way. I guess some need to be critical thinkers and read between the lines.

      Historically ALADS board members are elected with about 10% of the vote, however, for this “meaningless survey” they required 33%, or else it would not count. Can you read between the lines?

  • Riverside County Sheriff’s Office is basically in the same predicament as LASO (LASD for millennials). Even their deputies union is feeling the same about their union president, who personally sides with the incumbent. All that starts well doesn’t necessarily mean all will end well. This time next month is highly probable for very few changes with the status quo remaining the same. All complaints afterwards are void.

    • I agree, in the case of LASO, as LASD is known outside the LASD, it is safe to say that at least 50% of deputies dislike McBuckles and the union. Yet, they had the opportunity to send a loud and strong message to both the union and the sheriff by endorsing other than the sheriff. It appears they failed. It seems deputies wake up only when suddenly their badge and gun is unjustly taken, and with that, their livelihood. There is no doubt in any body’s mind that the great majority supported a challenger, but, we may never know, as the bosses of the mafia, (union) control what, and what not.

  • No tenured deputy along with those in the know should be surprised with ALADS decision not to endorse a candidate. They (ALADS) talk a good game but never produce. Their poll was flawed from the beginning with the 33% participation goal via computer. I guess no one thought about going to briefings or stations with the ALADS Rep’s putting in some work. I don’t know who is guiding ALADS, because nothing is working.

  • ALADS IS NOT ENDORSING A CANDIDATE FOR SHERIFF
    ALADS Releases Results of Members Sheriff’s Election SURVEY
    surruo.com

    Los Angeles, May 5, 2018 – An advisory poll of the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs’ (ALADS) members asking which candidate for L.A. County Sheriff ALADS should support received a response from just 17.9% of ALADS’ members. Although well short of the 33% participation rate required for the survey to be considered valid, the results are still compelling. The underlying sentiments which drove responses should certainly be of concern to Sheriff McDonnell. In particular, the Sheriff should take note that this vote represents a loss of confidence in him by a significant number of his deputies.

    In response to the question: “Who would you like to see ALADS endorse for Los Angeles County Sheriff?” The votes were cast as follows:

    Candidate Count

    Bob Lindsey 1302
    No endorsement 55
    Jim McDonnell 34
    Alex Villanueva 32

    This poll was conducted after both the October 11, 2017 interviews of all candidates in a forum open to all members, and the April 6, 2018 Board of Directors meeting where all three candidates addressed the Board in a forum again open to all members. The videos of each of the candidate’s October 11, 2017 interviews with the ALADS Political Endorsement Committee can be viewed by clicking on the links below.
    Alex Villanueva
    Bob Lindsey
    Jim McDonnell
    Although a majority of ALADS’ members did not weigh in on this issue, when ALADS’ Directors and Field Representatives speak to members, they primarily hear complaints over the seriously flawed disciplinary system and the use of that flawed system to tarnish the reputation of deputies (even after the California Appellate Court ordered them not to do so). Following close behind, are member complaints of harsh working conditions stemming from the staffing crisis and substantial shortage of deputy sheriffs, ending CARPing, the failure to provide proper training and equipment, stopping forced overtime which jeopardizes the safety of deputies, poorly planned scheduling, and inaccurate budgeting for positions. Correcting these issues will doubtlessly go a long way to making the L.A. Sheriff’s Department a place where deputies want to stay and attract new and desperately needed candidates to the Department.

    The Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs (ALADS) is the collective bargaining agent representing more than 7,900 deputy sheriffs and district attorney investigators working in Los Angeles County. Like our Facebook page
    http://www.facebook.com/aladsonline

  • Uh oh, what is the angry candidate going to do now? He was counting on ALADS to bankroll his revenge platform, and that didn’t pan out. Kudos for Bob in organizing a robust get out the vote campaign among his ALADS supporters, but now he is stuck selling his candidacy to a general audience that’s far, far different than the ones who voted by email. This will be entertaining for sure.

    • LATBG, when you think about the fact that historically only 10% of the members vote for the board election and any other topic that affects them, 18% is almost double that amount.

      Detractors can disagree with Bob all they want, twist and misrepresent the facts to obtain a desired result, but most people of common, normal intellect, can read between the lines.

      Greetings.

      • If the 10% historic voting participation is correct, then why are those prior board election results valid? Why have we set a higher threshold for endorsements than we have for electing board members?

        I’m not into the politics of our board or who our sheriff is, but I voted this time out. I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed, but it seems to me that the board set a goal they knew wouldn’t be met so they woudln’t have to take a stand and endorse a candidate other than McDonnell.

        • ALADS numbers are magically manipulated to further advance themselves or detract from any opposition. With no offense to the challengers in the Sheriff race, it will take a miracle to replace the current Sheriff. If ALADS Board felt that McDonnell was another Tanaka it would’ve been a no-brainer to vote NO!

          • Hey Joe, I’m a little confused here, maybe you can help me out. I heard a very liberal, registered Democrat Lindsey proclaiming himself to be a friend of the ACLU crowd at the ELAC debate, complete with granting subpoena power to the COC and not spending money to replace MCJ, instead giving it to social services. Last night I heard a ten minute rant radio interview where Bob “NRA” Lindsey declared himself a warrior for the far right. What’s going on here? He actively sought the dem party and dem club endorsement, but has a campaign slogan of “taking politics out of law enforcement.” I think I’m getting whiplash here…

  • This story is about the circumstances of Scott Craig, not the pissing contest with ALADS and McDonnell. Take your conversation to L-Tac, please.

    • Scott Craig received some feedback then the conversation morphed into the welfare of current deputies. Leave it at that.

    • You’re right about one of ALADS pissing contests. Their next pissing contest starts trial this month, BC540789
      No need for L- Tac, this will be a County wide broadcast. Give me the patch.

  • Voting in the California 2018 Primary Election, including the contest to fill the Office of Sheriff of Los Angeles County for the next 4 yr. term, will start tomorrow Monday May 7, 2018.
    The County Registrar Of Voters can begin delivering absentee ballots.
    The candidates running against incumbent Sheriff McDonnell should assess their prospects and their personal priorities.
    Hopefully, they have access to reliable current voter polling surveys.
    They should make an objective analysis of the prospect of holding the incumbent under 50% to force a run-off.

    The 2014 primary election had no incumbent Sheriff on the ballot.
    There was very high level of media coverage of the race, several candidates on ballot, at least 3 were high profile candidates.
    Jim McDonnell took 49% of votes in that primary.

    As the incumbent in 2018, McDonnell would be expected to poll at above 64%.
    Is there a realistic probability of catching up to the incumbent under the present circumstances, i.e. – no significant media coverage of the race or the campaigns of the 2 challengers?

    What is more important to Villanueva or Lindsey –
    to become the new Sheriff themselves against impossible odds
    or to force McDonnell into a run-off against a viable opponent?

    • You raise some interesting points. I do know that both Block and Baca in their prime hit the mid to high sixties mark against a field of unknowns, but then again they were both household names. McDonnell is not, and nine out of ten voters can’t even name who the sheriff is on a good day. Has McDonnell done a stellar job, cementing his favorite status as incumbent, and increased his base of support among the electorate? It doesn’t seem like it, I could be wrong.

      I guess it depends on how you define viability in the eyes of the voter. Lindsey can approach from the right, Villanueva can approach from the left, but they should stop shooting at each other and keep aiming at the incumbent. I read Lindsey’s coordinated campaign against Villanueva to be an admission of something his followers haven’t figured out yet: Villanueva is the only viable candidate who can challenge McDonnell and beat him at his own game. You are correct the race is not attracting media attention for now, and neither is it attracting a lot of fundraising when measured against 2014.

      What Villanueva has been able to do is garner the support of the liberal political establishment, and they are as opposed to McDonnell as they are to Lindsey. They also happen to be the overwhelming majority of LA county voters. Even the Board of Supervisors are uncertain how to proceed given the failures of their hero from 2014.

      Lindsey made the fatal mistake of burning too many bridges in his rush to consolidate support among the rank and file, culminating with his enthusiastic support of President Trump. It may sound great for the keyboard warriors on his social media feed, but the LA county electorate will see things quite differently. McDonnell, too, is quietly supporting Trump, meeting personally with AG Sessions and the Donald himself in the oval office.

      Each side needs the other to be successful chasing their base, but the reality is one base dwarfs the other. The dark horse in this race is the LA Times Editorial board, notoriously fickle and traditional supporters of the political establishment. Let’s see what they do this week…

  • LATBG, While not agreeing per se with all of your posts, I,along with others lean towards your educated and work related opinion, even if others don’t say so. With that being said, what is your opinion on PPPOA and ALADS not endorsing at this time. Do you think that an endorsement, and not so much the dollars amount that accompanies it would make a difference at this time? Just your opinion.

    • Good question Curious. The endorsement is a double-edged sword, in that it will attract the pro-law enforcement crowd and at the same time repel the activist crowd. What is more important is ALADS and PPOA using their deep pockets to tear down McBuckles with a major media buy highlighting all of his spectacular failures. That being said, PPOA endorsed Leyva back in 2006, and sent him a check for $1,000.00, which may as well have been a fruit basket.

      I think both ALADS and PPOA should have done a debate with all three candidates back in October, with the prize being a joint endorsement and a seven figure ad buy as the winning prize. Since that time, however, at lot has transpired behind the scenes, which coupled with the election calendar makes the endorsement moot at this point. There is not enough time left to make a splash with an endorsement, but there is enough time to make a dent with an independent ad campaign. By ALADS and PPOA sitting on their hands, they effectively blocked both Villanueva and Lindsey from getting the coveted Federation of Labor endorsement, along with LAPPL and the other major POA’s.

      • Agreed to your response. LMAO at the $1000.00 and fruit basket. You were being too kind both to ALADS & PPOA by saying that they were sitting on their hands when in actuality they’re sitting on their ASS, vacillating concerning any moves. My condolences to the line deputies who are doing the heavy lifting and being burned with no relief.

  • Where can we file an ethics violation complaint/report on Sheriff McDonnell for what he is doing with the Forbes magazine survey?
    He has created a graphic which places himself on the cover of FORBE’S magazine, with a headline “The only Police department on Forbes “America’s Best Employers 2018” list.
    Below that is a graphic of a prize ribbon in the color green which says “Top 500 Company”.
    This is blatant McDonnel p.r./campaign material which is posted on the lasd.org website which is funded by L.A. County taxpayers.
    He is using the taxpayer-funded Nixle alert system and the LASD twitter accounts to send this out.
    And it has been picked-up and reprinted by some local online newspapers.
    The L.A. County Registrar may begin sending out absentee ballots today. They postman will have some on his delivery route tomorrow.
    Can Alex Villanueva or Robert Lindsey put their campaign material on lasd.org and Nixle?

    • Like it or not, you can’t hate McDonnell’s public relations team. You have more voters that read Forbes Magazine than those who don’t. Not sure if it violates any ethics code but you have to admit that it’s pretty savvy. McDonnell is pretty much a shoo-in.

      • I’m pretty sure the circulation of Forbes magazine in LA county is pretty minuscule in comparison to the total number of voters. Although it may circulate well at HOJ, the picture alone has an element of impropriety that repels voters, not attracts them.

  • Back then, when then Captain Leyva ran for sheriff, I am not sure if it was in 2002, or 2006, I helped him by doing door knocks in the san Gabriel valley. I helped him by spreading his message. While doing it, I was afraid the Baca regime would found out, they would get creative work in the gray and frame me for a crime, luckily it did not happen.

    Times have changed and this media devices seem more effective. Yet, I am more afraid of McDonkey than Baca. I knew then, that Sheriff Baca was not leading the department correctly, it took a decade for him to roll himself up, not by choice. Pretty sad. I hope McDonkey gets the message early on.

  • Calls were made to Forbes Magazine, advising that the LACO Sheriff, is stealing their copyright Material for political gain……………………………..Forbes is an American business magazine. Published bi-weekly, it features original articles on finance, industry, investing, and marketing topics.
    Customer service: 1 (866) 436-7237
    Founder: B. C. Forbes

    I hope McBuckles discipline himself for misappropriation of other’s copyright material……………

  • The Sheriff should use his own policy, by not using others intellectual property:

    Manual of Policy and Procedure, (MPP) 3-01/040.62 USE OF SHERIFF’S INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY/STAR/LOGOS

    The Department’s intellectual property is among the County of Los Angeles’ most
    valuable assets. The Department has spent considerable time and resources in
    developing and protecting its valuable trademarks, copyrights and other intellectual
    property.

    The term “intellectual property” means all logos, marks, stars, seals, emblems, badges,
    insignias, symbols and slogans which were created by, or at the request of, the
    Department.

    Prohibited Use
    Use of intellectual property by Department members or non-members is prohibited unless
    authorized by this policy or statute. The intellectual property may NOT BE USED in any unofficial capacity and/or where its DISPLAY may ERRONEOUSLY portray an official SPONSORSHIP by, or association with, the Department or reasonably CONFUSE THE PUBLIC as to the RELATIONSHIP with the Department and the user of the intellectual property.

    Based on my training and experience in the field of intellectual property theft, coupled with the fact the sheriff is portraying himself as being endorsed by Forbes Magazine, I recommend the sheriff be fired, and referred to his friend Jacki for prosecution. CPA Diana concurs, she told me.

  • …Mis-appropriation of copyrighted material, “blatant lies” regarding n7mber of employees on the department ant the kicker….”best law enforcement agency” are all obvious blatant “untruths”. I would hope anyone looking at it takes it for what it is, a “gag poster” like the ones you get made up at the carnivals or amusement park. It is in poor taste, “looks bad” and not befitting a sitting Sheriff, however it reflects that old saying “all is fair in love and politics (actually war)”. I guess the Sheriff and his PR msvhine took off the rubber gloves so to speak, it will be interesting to see what his challengers do.

    The may be a pivot point in the campsing for all. Instead of abiding by the “Queen’s” rules things might be going underground no holes bared freestyle MMA.

    Standby for further……

    • Didn’t Seattle PD institute a policy like this? I thought their union filed a lawsuit but haven’t heard anything regarding the outcome??

      This was about three to four years ago when the past administration, DOJ and FBI were on a directed mission to shackle and reign in local law enforcement. I wouldn’t be surprised if the lawsuit was shot down by a lower court, the low court decision affirmed by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and it ultimately died a slow death.

      Let’s not give Sheriff Clueless and his More Clueless Constitutional Policing advisor undue credit for reinventing the “square wheel”.

      Those already to vested in the job, hang tight, invest wisely so you can get out ASAP. Those just in it thinking about the career path, “DON’T DO IT!!!!”. Go design web pages, become a fire man, design apps or become an investigative reporter or “creative writing journalist”.

      It’s just not worth it to your physical, mental and emotional health and the risks to your family.

  • Has anyone seen the new clearance form, separate from the DDWS, that is going into effect on July 1st?

    It is a minimum of 6 pages, and rumor has it, can go up to 10 pages. This is for every detention. It’s painfully obvious that the California Legislature wants to eliminate all proactive police work.

    • Right now is the perfect time for deputies to be like a FIREMEN, park and wait for the next call. Driving slow, to the call, following the rules of the road, to avoid breaking the law. Warn the problem people with the siren on the way in, hopefully by the time deputies got there, the time has solved the problem. Then go back to the coffee shop, wave at people, smile and be nice. Avoid STARBUCKS, as per their policy, transients are welcome. Transients will eventually cause a problem, but trying to solve it, will result and a criminal case against the deputies. Park behind the bushes, hopefully, deputies are safe there.

      • Anyone read ALADS reasoning/excuse for not endorsing despite missing the 33% mark? Unbelievable! You have to read it for yourself.

        • Anyone believe that the 91% mark by Lindsey with a 17% turnout was not achieved without some serious campaigning on county time and in county facilities? Word on the yard some Lindsey supporters went a little overboard in their zeal to sell his campaign. Too bad Lindsey lacked the integrity to advise his supporters not to jeopardize their careers by violating department and county policies.

          • Nothing is an issue until someone makes an issue. If any one wants to put a case on you, for an allegation of violating a department, county , state or federal, rule, regulation or law, it is not difficult.

            They can begin by getting you for not checking the oil level in your patrol vehicle as required by department policy. LATBG, did you ever check the oil engine in your patrol car, as a daily requirement per department policy? Did you ever get a free meal at a restaurant or coffe shop?

            So the point is that there are so many rules and regulations that if they were followed by the letter, the department’s operations were to come to a crawl.

            If some one wants too put a case on you they will, heck the Feds do it. If they want you and they don’t have anything they will begin by checking your tax returns, no reasonable suspicion is required, much less a warrant.

  • Are you talking about Ron Hernandez stating “not being a good time pointing out the failures of the Sheriff” because of contract negotiations?
    INCREDIBLE!

    • Jacob S:

      Sounds like Ron Hernandez has read the tea leaves & adduced that the Sheriff is going to win the election….

      • ….and reflective of the bigger issue regarding employee unions staffed by members who are still actively employed and supervised by department managers and executives, and willing to “get in the car around the corner” so to speak or make a deal today for a “ride down the line”.

        Boggles the mind how LASO has functioned or ( dis-functioned) for so long with this style of employee union representation.

  • Dear Alads; Remaining neutral in an election basically states that all is well. I’m not so sure that the majority of your constituents feel the same. Choosing not to endorse means no complaints afterwards, as one cannot have it both ways. It will be interesting to see the end results as well as the next election at Alads. I wish the deputies well and wishes also go out to the winner in the Sheriff’s election.

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