Wednesday, November 25, 2015

LA County DA Vindicates Citizens -- Rebukes Rogue Huntington Park, CA City Council

On September 8th 2015, I not only attended the Huntington Park, CA City council meeting to protest their appointment of two illegal aliens to city commissions. I stayed on to listen to the council discuss and vote on the rest of their agenda.

In Torrance, CA, residents can choose to communicate on non-agenda items at the beginning or the end of the city council meeting. Residents are further permitted to pull out and comment on any or all agenda items.

Such should be the case in every municipal and state government meeting in California.

Yet in Huntington Park, the city council has strategically worked to prevent members of the city from speaking out to criticize the council or call out their concerns about poor governance, financial mismanagement, or ongoing nepotism.

When I wanted to address the city council on an agenda item, they told me that it was too late to speak on the item. When I further asked for reasons why I could not ask about those items, Mayor Karina Macias ruled me out of order, and I was forced to leave the chambers.


Yet this affront to freedom of speech and assembly pales in comparison to what the city council did to Dr. Robert Newman during the October 6th meeting. Following my orals during public communications,  Macias ruled Newman out of order for saying "Yes" three times during my comments. He was neither disruptive nor offensive, and he did not prevent me or anyone else in the chambers from hearing my comments.

Dr. Robert Newman

Nevertheless, the mayor ruled him out of  order. The rest of the audience started yelling out and faulting this ruling. The city council scrambled into closed sessions, except for Valentin Amezquita, who joined Dr. Newman in the hallway to support him. Police chief Cosme Lozamo explained that the doctor would be removed from the chambers for the rest of the meeting, even though he had done nothing wrong.

Completely outrageous!

I submitted a formal complaint to the Public Integrity Division of the LA County District Attorney's office.

On November 10th, they issues a stern letter rebuking the city council for removing me and then Dr. Newman from two meetings.

Specific passages in their letter included the following passages:

Dear Honorable [sic-- I can't help but add this] Council Members,

We have received complaints alleging violations of the Ralph M. Brown Act (the Act) by the Huntington Park City Council at the September 8, and October 6, 2015 City Council meetings. As explained below, we do not believe that any violation occurred during the September 8, 2015 meeting, when you denied a speaker a second chance to speak, but we do believe you improperly and unreasonably removed members of the public from the September 8, and October 6, 2015 meetings.


However, we do find that the member of the public was improperly and unreasonably removed from the meeting. The City Attorney has cited two cases that he believes supports his position to remove members of the public from City Council meetings. We note that in both cases cited by the City Attorney, the person who was deemed to be disruptive was first warned and asked to desist from his conduct, before further action was taken.

Here are the specific comments relating to my unjust removal:

As noted above, a member of the public simply inquired, "Excuse me, aren't you, isn't there supposed to be options for members of the audience to comment?" Many local cities, and indeed the Ins Angeles County Board of Supervisors, allow for multiple comments from audience
members, as each item of business is discussed. While we understand that the City of Huntington
Park has chosen to limit public discussion, this does not make the speaker's question unreasonable. Indeed, the speaker identified himself as a resident of Torrance during the public comment portion of the meeting, and may not have been familiar with the manner in which the Huntington Park City Council conducts its meetings. We additionally note that the speaker's tone was neutral, he did not raise his voice when asking the question, and he did not dispute the Mayor's or the City Attorney's ruling. The issue was resolved in seconds. Accordingly, there was absolutely no reason to remove the speaker from the meeting. To quote the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, removal is authorized only "when an attendee disrupts, disturbs or otherwise impedes the orderly conduct of the Council meeting." [Bold text mine]

Thank you, LA County District Attorney!

Now, in the case of Dr. Newman's unjust removal, the letter informed:

We have also reviewed the videotapes of the October 6, 2015 Huntington Park City Council meeting. We note that during the public comments portion of the meeting, the speaker who was
removed from the September 8, 2015 meeting, again spoke. We additionally note that the speaker's comments were again critical of a majority of the City Council. We observed that two members of the public, at separate times, exclaimed "yes" during his speech to the Council. One member of the
public, who exclaimed "yes" three times during the three minute speech, was removed from the meeting. While his "yes" comments were audible, they were not overly loud and did not interrupt the speaker. His "yes" comments, within the context of the speaker's speech, cannot be described as confrontational, inflammatory, belligerent or outrageous, nor did they impede the orderly conduct
of the meeting.'

Vindicated by these affirmations or our rights and the city council's wrongs, We the People Rising have continued attending the meetings, and have voiced our support for the citizens of Huntington Park and throughout the country. We have not ceased to demand the rule of law and right actions restored to the city.

Yes! Yes! Yes!

To all freedom-loving patriots and citizens in Southern California and throughout the United States, let our example serve to embolden you. You have nothing to fear from rogue local officials who think that they are above the law. They aren't, and through our consistent, persistent lobbying and activism, the rogue Hutntington Park City Council is buckling under the pressure.

Contact them right now, and tell them:

1. Rescind the appointments of the two illegal aliens to city commissions.

2. Resign their posts as city councilmembers.

3. Remind all elected officials throughout the country: cities are for citizens!

Jhonny Pineda
4326 E. 60th Street
Huntington Park, CA 90255
Phone Number: (323) 356-8967

Graciela Ortiz
6928 Mountain View Ave.
Huntington Park, CA 90255
Phone Number: (323) 356-8852

Karina Macias:
2411 E. Gage Ave, Apt. 10
Huntington Park, CA 90255
Phone Number: (323) 482-6640

Marilyn Sanabria:
3425 Live Oak Street
Huntington Park, CA 90255
Phone: (323) 356-9498

Please attend the Next Huntington Park City Council Meeting
December 1st, 2015 -- 5: 30 pm
6550 Miles Ave, Huntington Park, CA 90255

1 comment:

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