John Malvaez Photography, Courtesy of Alex Villanueva Office

Sheriff Alex Villanueva Gets Rare Rebuke from LA Democratic Party

August 16, 2019 - 7:36 am
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(KNX 1070) - Sheriff Alex Villanueva gets a rare rebuke from the LA County Democratic Party, which helped him get him into office.

"Alarming."

That's how Damian Carroll, an at-large member of the Democratic Party of the San Fernando Valley, describes what he's seen from Villanueva so far.

Carroll authored a resolution which was passed by the County Democratic Party, that says the sheriff's "actions have eroded...trust" in the department.

"We were elated when he won and to see so quickly him turn his back on these things he promised and pursue this other sort of tawdry agenda is deeply disappointing," he said.

In his response letter, Villanueva dismisses the resolution, calls its timing suspect and defends his agenda.

In his letter to the Democratic Party, Villanueva wrote, "The timing of this resolution is suspect, coming on the heals of the news of a criminal investigation involving both current and/or former elected and/or appointed officials. I am fully aware of the efforts of certain BOS members to rally support from third party validators to encourage public outcry while misleading residents. As to content, the issue of Mandoyan’s rehiring is the subject of litigation and has not been resolved to date, rendering the “illegal rehiring” description inappropriate. It should be noted that the authority of Sheriff McDonnell to rehire 14 discharged employees with significant misconduct issues was never challenged by the BOS, the OIG, or the COC. A total of six employees have been rehired, including one initiated by McDonnell’s division chief John Benedict, three employees reinstated by the Civil Service Commission, and one where the statute of limitations expired. In Deputy Mandoyan’s case, significant new evidence has been discovered that confirms the department’s initial decision under Sheriff McDonnell was to not terminate his employment. "

He also accuses some county supervisors of trying to "rally support from third-party validators to encourage public outcry while misleading residents."

Supervisor Sheila Kuehl calls it "paranoia."

Villanueva and the board of supervisors have been sparring on a number of issues, including his decision to reinstate a deputy, and campaign volunteer,  who had been fired over allegations of domestic violence.