Tag Archive | "Lake County Sheriff’s Office"

Lake County Sheriff Sued For Blacklisting Press

 

Public Official Plays Small Town Politics

 

Skippy Massey
Humboldt Sentinel

 

A Lake County website has filed a discrimination lawsuit against outspoken County Sheriff Frank Rivero alleging
he “blacklisted” them from press releases and put up unfair
obstacles to getting public records.

Lake County News is a small news website started by Elizabeth Larson and her husband John Jensen.  She manages the business; he manages the news department and the six paid freelance writers.  John Jensen is a former managing editor of the Record-Bee newspaper.

riveroThey contend the issue centers on whether the Sheriff’s Office, and Sheriff Rivero, can treat local news organizations differently because of the way they cover the news, the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat reported. 

Sheriff Rivero, however, has refused to back down.  He asserts he has no obligation to email press releases to Lake County News, contending its coverage of the sheriff and his department has been biased and inaccurate, the Press-Democrat said.

The Press-Democrat noted:

The fight flared in October when Rivero told Lake County News editor Elizabeth Larson in an email that he would block her emails, not take her phone calls and that she and her husband must file formal public records requests to get information, according to the lawsuit.

“I am done with your ‘National Enquirer’ style of reporting and general disrespect of me and my office,” Rivero wrote.

Rivero acknowledges he told his staff to stop including Larson in emails sent to news organizations, but contends that policy does not violate the law because there are alternative ways for Larson to access the agency’s releases.  Rivero said the emails were a “courtesy” to reporters…

first amndment cltnPeter Scheer, Executive Director of the First Amendment Coalition that advocates for open government and free speech, said the First Amendment and California’s public record laws are clearly designed to prohibit public officials from deciding the arbiters of good reporting.

“No public figure likes their press,” Scheer said.  ”Too bad, grow up. If you’re going to be a public official, you have to be able to take some heat.  And that heat is protected by the First Amendment.”

In their lawsuit, Lake County News is asking a judge for three directives:

  • Instruct the Sheriff’s Office how to respond to media requests
  • Order the agency to comply with state public records laws
  • Order the office to stop discriminating against the media based on the content of their reporting

censorTo note, Lake County Supervisors have resoundingly criticized Sheriff Rivero’s actions to censor the press through favoritism.

Former Clearlake Police Chief Bob Chalk also raised concerns that Rivero’s actions send a message that “his administration will promote and tolerate unfair and biased treatment of others.”

Through their legal counsel, Lake County News is currently in settlement talks with Lake County Counsel before the issue heads into a courtroom.

Rivero, a Cuban immigrant, started his career as a beat cop in San Francisco’s Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhood and shocked the Lake County establishment when he ran for Sheriff on an anti-corruption platform in 2010, beating 16-year incumbent Rod Mitchell.   “If you find a more corrupt place in California I’ll eat my hat,” he said at the time.

Rivero said during his tenure that he’s cut more than $1 million in waste from the Sheriff’s Department budget and put an end to cops who abused their power under the “good ol’ boys” network he swept out of office.

censor2The Daily World wrote that Rivero is a contentious public official who has ”been called a thug, a liar, a bully, a cowboy and the Cuban John Wayne for his swaggering brand of justice” in the county of 64,500 residents.

“I’m a rare bird,” Rivero said in September. “I’m probably the only immigrant elected sheriff in California.  I am one controversial character; I speak my mind.  I’m a rough character to deal with when you’re screwing around.”

* * * * * * *

You can read the full story in the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat article by Julie Johnson, “Lake County Website Sues Sheriff over Press Policies.”

Posted in Local, MediaComments (3)


HumSentinel on Twitter

RSS Progressive Review

  • Furthermore. . .
    Watch the state by state incarcertation rate grow from 1978 to 2012 All four Republican candidates in the North Carolina Senate race were asked on Earth Day if they believed climate change is a proven fact. And all four candidates said 'no. […]
  • How to become a Nobel Prize winner: Eat chocolate
    This story is two years but too self-serving to forgetReuters -  Of all the chocolate research out there, the most unabashed tribute to the "dark gold" has to be a study just published in one of the world's most prestigious medical journals.The higher a country's chocolate consumption, the more Nobel laureates it spawns per capita, accord […]
  • Taxpayers subsidize Walmart and the Walton family by $7.8 billion a year
    AFL- CIO - A new report from Americans for Tax Fairness shows that taxpayers in the United States subsidize Walmart and the Walton family, who owns the majority of Walmart stock and is the richest family in the country, by at least $7.8 billion annually. At the same time, the report shows, taxpayers help pad Walmart and the Walton family's profits.The r […]
  • Yes, the cowboys and the Indians can be friends
    DC Media Group-    [A] campsite by the Cowboy Indian Alliance for a week-long protest against the Keystone XL pipeline began on the National Mall in Washington, DC . . .So far seven tipis standing 20 feet tall have been assembled with one in progress and more to go up tomorrow. Several will be painted with ceremonial tribal designs as the week progresses.Ran […]
  • John Kerry: Secretary of Buffoonery
    Justin Raimando, Anti-War -  Oh, the burden of empire! It weighs so heavily on John Kerry’s shoulders:"Secretary of State John Kerry attested Tuesday to the massively complex challenges Washington faces in Ukraine, Russia, Iran and the Middle East, declaring ‘it was easier’ during the Cold War."In a candid moment during a State Department speech, t […]
  • USAID bribes foreign officials
    Jonathan Turley, Information Clearinghouse -  Congressional members are moving to address what is being called a “slush fund” with the United States Agency for International Development ) where millions are paid to political figures in foreign countries. We have previously discussed such payments by the CIA to the openly corrupt Afghanistan government, inclu […]
  • Supreme Court says all it takes is an anonymous 911 call to abolish 4th Amendment
    Slashdot -  The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that police officers are legally allowed to stop and search vehicles based solely on anonymous 911 tips. Justice Clarence Thomas, writing for the majority opinion, reasoned that 'a 911 call has some features that allow for identifying and tracking callers' as well as for recording their calls, both of which […]
  • Chances are your vegatable oil is genetically modified
    Mother Jones - Soybeans are the second-largest US crop after corn, covering about a quarter of US farmland. We grow more soybeans than any other country except Brazil. According to the US Department of Agriculture, more than 90 percent of the soybeans churned out on US farms each year are genetically engineered to withstand herbicides, nearly all of them inv […]
  • The FBI's illegal mistreatment of American Muslims
    Kevin Gosztola, Firedog Lake - A lawsuit brought on behalf of four American Muslim men has been filed against the FBI for allegedly punishing them by placing them on the No Fly List when they refused to become informants and spy on American Muslim communities.According to the complaint, the American Muslim men are “among the many innocent people who find the […]
  • Department of Good Stuff: Community Courts
    Center for Court Innovation  - Community courts are neighborhood-focused courts that attempt to harness the power of the justice system to address local problems. They can take many forms, but all focus on creative partnerships and problem solving.. And they test new and aggressive approaches to public safety rather than merely responding to crime after it h […]
  • The phlosophy of donut holes
    Improbable Research - In 2001, professor Achille C. Varzi, of Columbia University, New York, very probably became the first philosopher to author a paper focusing specifically on the ramifications of holes in donuts, as we reported. In 2012 the subject received further attention, this time from professor Stephen Barker and Mark Jago at the philosophy departm […]
  • Pocket paradigms: The Mid East
    The most misleading myth about the Middle East is that an end to violence is a necessary precondition to peace negotiations. An end to violence should rather be one the goals of peace negotiations. Killings emphasize the need for such talks rather than serving as justification for avoiding them. If what goes on in the synagogue doesn't stay in the synag […]
  • Word
    Implicit in the term `national defense' is the notion of defending those values and ideals which set this nation apart -- Justice Potter Stewart, 1967 The problem in defense is how far you can go without destroying from within what you are trying to defend from without. -- Dwight Eisenhower […]
  • Today in history
    1932 -- Jim Fixx, author of Complete Book of Running, which kick-started the 1970s jogging craze, lives. He fixated on running until his bum ticker seized up like a rusty chain saw. At age 52, Fixx walks out of house & begins jogging. Goes a short distance when he has a massive coronary: His autopsy reveals one coronary artery 99% clogged, another 80% ob […]
  • From our overstocked archives: The real reason for the war on public education
    One of the stop stories on our pages in the past 24 hours has been School "reform" is about class, not classrooms in which the gentrifying aspects of the war on public education was discussed back in 2010. […]