Times-Standard editorial even dumber than most

It’s amazing the things we can learn from the Times-Standard. Take the editorial from the Sunday edition, in which we are informed that the problem with prosecutions in Humboldt County is not that Paul Gallegos is a dumb, unethical pile of butt-stink–it’s that his office doesn’t have enough money, so we should give him more. Great idea. Maybe while we’re at it, we can give bad drivers more cars, and lousy farmers more land. Hey–let’s give child molesters more dicks, because for sure that’ll make everything better.

Previously we’ve been told that all Gallegos needed was time. Then it was experience. Then it was staff. Now, evidently, it’s money.What Gallegos actually needs is 50 IQ points and a conscience. What he has that serves him almost as well is the editorial board of the county’s only daily newspaper spending a full decade making excuses for him.

Gallegos loses a deputy but gains a potential new scapegoat

Help wanted, and we're not talking about jobs.

As of today, it seems that Deputy District Attorney Ben McLaughlin can add another word to his title: Former.

He and District Attorney Paul Gallegos, whom McLaughlin actively supported in the last election, had what was described as an “ugly” confrontation in the middle of jury selection that ended with McLaughlin quitting his job and walking out of the courthouse.

Conversation must have been interesting around McLaughlin’s dinner table tonight, given that his wife is Assistant District Attorney Kelly Neel. Will McLaughlin tuck it up between his legs and ask for his job back, or will Gallegos’s second-in-command join her husband in the pursuit of new opportunities?

If McLaughlin sticks to his guns, this could be a godsend for Gallegos. He had just about run out of people to blame for his own shortcomings, and it looks like he has at least one new volunteer.

Neely for Congress, Gallegos for Assembly, Clendenen for Mayor McCheese?

Humboldt County politics: McFucked as usual.

Congresswoman Neely? Assemblyman Gallegos? Get ready for your election gossip roundup.

Word around town is that Bonnie Neely is itching to get back into the political game following her  ignominious defeat by Virginia Bass in November. But will she try to go from failed county supervisor to First District U.S. Congresswoman? An endorsement from Mike Thompson, who has announced his intention to run in the redrawn Fifith District, would be crucial.

And when Wes Chesbro term-limits out of the first Assembly district, what fresh young face do you think the Dems will put forward to take his place? We’re hearing it’s none other than District Attorney Paul Gallegos, empty-headed tool and possibly the worst thing ever to happen to the administration of justice in Humboldt County.

The good news is, he can’t possibly be a worse assemblyman than DA, and maybe we could then elect someone to the DA’s Office who wants more out of life than a well shined knob. We can hope for that, anyway.

As for Clif Clendenen, he said he would already be the head of McDonaldland except that in the last vote the Hamburglar stole the election.

Okay, not really.

For Gallegos, ‘multitasking’ means pandering to growers and paying off campaign debt all at the same time

Let’s just hope no one offers him a piece of gum….

Dumbfuck for sale. Serious inquiries only, please.

Gallegos looks to use redistricting discussions to lock re-election prospects

Humboldt County Supervisors won’t be able to avoid wildly whacking the virtual political hornets’ nest Tuesday when they begin discussions on adjusting the supervisorial district boundaries as part of California Elections Code laws following the most recent census tally.

Don't hate me because I am beautiful. Please do cut me some slack on my fundamental lack of knowledge of the law, dismal management and leadership capabilities and breathtakingly giant lapses of morality.

The board is expected to appoint Sheriff Mike Downey, District Attorney Paul Gallegos, Assessor Mari Wilson and Registrar of Voters Carolyn Crnich to the newest committee to mull over ideas,  listen to outspoken members of the SoHum and NoHum public and bring a plan back to the board for a vote.

The supervisors have until November 1 to make the changes that reflect the county’s population growth, which has increased the most in Supervisor Ryan Sundberg’s 5th and Clif Clendenon’s 2nd districts.

As of now Community Development Diservices Director Kirk Girard isn’t directly involved and the Nov. 1 deadline looks easily doable.

As part of the redistricting discussions, insiders say Gallegos will use his position to try and float a plan to sell or cede all county lands to neighboring  Del Norte, Trinity and Mendocino counties except for Garberville, Redway, Arcata and a few pockets of houses in Eureka.

According to his braintrust Natalynne DeLapp and Richard Salzman, the plan would virtually assure Gallegos’ re-election for as long as very small-, small-, medium-, mediumish large-, large-, very large-,  massively large-, and off-the-fucking-hook-EPIC-scale marijuana production remains illegal.

If Gallegos makes a list of law enforcement officers with ethics problems, does he have to put himself on it?

Pot, kettle, etc.

The Times-Standard reports that Humboldt County District Attorney Paul Gallegos is making a secret list of of law enforcement officials “whose character and honesty have come into question.”

What could possibly go wrong with that?

So because we like to help–we’re givers, you know, deep down inside–we thought we’d get the ball rolling with a list of people in Gallegos’ own office against whom dishonesty has been not only alleged but judicially substantiated.

Our story begins with a routine DUI arrest in Ferndale and ends almost two years later with a California court of appeal tossing the case after finding that DA Investigator Wayne Cox and Deputy DAs Ben McLaughlin and Randy Mailman committed prosecutorial misconduct and violated the defendant’s constitutional rights.

A subsequent opinion upheld these findings and added Assistant DA Wes Keat–the number-two guy in Gags’ office–to the list of perpetrators.

Go team!!

The appellant, Rocky Crowl, was arrested in Ferndale in 2009 for allegedly driving under the influence. At the time of the arrest, the defendant and his two alleged passengers–Rocky’s girlfriend, named Jessica Sneed, and Rocky’s cousin Christopher Crowl who bore a “ballpark” resemblance to Rocky, according to court records–were out of the vehicle, and it was unclear which Crowl had actually been driving. Was it the drunk Rocky or the sober Christopher?

Sneed and Christopher didn’t help the prosecution’s case a bit when both testified at the preliminary hearing that it had been Christopher, not Rocky, behind the wheel. But this setback was only temporary, because the resourceful men and women from the DA’s Office had a solution: Tell the witnesses that if they testify at trial you’ll throw them in prison for perjury–or, to use the formal term for that activity, intimidate the shit out of the witnesses.

Cox had them arrested (over a 3-day weekend) and both charged with felony perjury and being an accessory to a felony. And then, maybe just because some things never change, McLaughlin offered them a deal in exchange for guilty pleas. Both refused.

Just how unusual was it to arrest and charge defense witnesses with perjury? The trial judge said that in 12 years on the bench, he’d never seen anything quite like it. According to the appellate decision,

We need not ignore the clear inference that the nearly unheard of conduct by the prosecution in this case was designed to intimidate these witnesses and keep them from testifying for defendant.

The court concluded

that the evidence in the record supports the trial court’s finding that the prosecution’s unnecessary urgency in arresting, forcefully interrogating, and filing perjury and accessory after the fact charges against Sneed and Christopher resulted in effectively precluding these previously willing defense witnesses from testifying at defendant’s trial. This was misconduct.

The court notified the California State Bar of its findings of misconduct by McLaughlin, Mailman and Keat.

Oh, and it also affirmed the trial court’s dismissal of the DUI case on the ground that the prosecution violated the defendant’s constitutional right to due process by intimidating defense witnesses.

So there’s four names for Gallegos’ Brady list. We’d put Gags on there too, except it’s pretty hard to question the character and honesty of someone who has neither.

Arcata Eye way funnier than Humboldt Mirror

Photo and story by Kevin Hoover

Gallegos Vows To Complete Subway Take-Out Order ‘Soon’

EUREKA, APRIL 1 – A tense standoff between Humboldt County District Attorney Paul Gallegos and a fast food menu entered its 11th day Monday, as the D.A. pondered a range of meat, topping and bun sandwich options that appeared to overwhelm the county’s lead prosecutor.

“Um… let’s see,” Gallegos said to an increasingly impatient Subway employee while attempting to complete a sandwich order. “Let’s do lettuce, tomatoes and, uh… peperoncinis – no, actually, I take that back, because I just remembered that I don’t really like spicy food,” the D.A. said, before regrouping to give it another go.

“Gimme a minute here,” he said, his eyes slowly drifting over to a stainless steel tray of red onions, then over to a condiment tray, then back to the onions, his brow furrowed in deep thought.

“Let’s start over at the beginning, sir,” a Subway clerk advised, motioning to several small loaves of bread arranged on an oven rack. “Would you like a foot-long or six-inch?”

Gallegos then looked in the direction of the oven rack for several minutes without speaking.
One customer characterized his expression as “a blank, thousand-yard stare.”

Lawn chairs, sleeping bags and pickup games of checkers occupied the 50-or-so customers waiting in line outside the Subway and – although nerves were increasingly frayed – patrons made the best of it, in a scene reminiscent of a Harry Potter film release.

Gallegos’ sandwich odyssey struck a familiar note to those accustomed to the D.A.’s poor – or some would even charge, nonexistent – decision-making abilities.

As lead prosecutor, Gallegos’ internal compass has at times displayed all the consistency of a Magic 8 Ball: One minute, offering soft plea deals to violent repeat criminals; the next, engaging in quixotic – and ultimately, failed – attempts at prosecuting elected officials and chiefs of police.

Back inside Subway, Gallegos expressed renewed determination to conquer the sandwich menu:  “I will select my chosen condiments and toppings without fear or favor,” he said in his trademark, meandering gravel-voice – but appeared no closer to narrowing down which vegetables to choose.

Putting a cell phone up to his ear, Gallegos was then overheard to say: “Listen, Richard, I need your help making a decision. No, not on that felony plea-bargain thing… and no, this has nothing to do with the investigation into Allison. Richard, can you remember whether I like dijonnaise?”

Read more here.

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