FFFF Fights City Hall for Release of Wild Ride Felz Communications

Here’s to secrecy…and to all my good ideas, too!

For several months FFFF has been stymied in our attempts to find out who talked to whom in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 when former City Manager Joe Felz drove off Glenwood Avenue, ran over a tree, and tried to motor off. Although he was stopped by the cops and smelled of liquor, calls were made and Felz got off scott free. For a while.

I’m not telling the truth and you can’t make me…

We want to know who had a hand in this dereliction of duty on the part of a police department that has become psychologically addicted to MADD DUI award ceremonies at council meetings. We want to know the role of former Chief Dan Hughes who admitted to communication with councilmembers; of then-mayor Jennifer Fitzgerald who claims to have no responsive documents although she has admitted to getting a call at 3 AM of the morning in question; of the ever-egregious Watch Commander on November 9th, Andrew Goodrich, whose frequent indifference to competent police work has been well-documented on these pages; of one Sergeant Corbett, who showed up at the scene and gave Felz the Breathalyzer pass so that no irrefutable evidence of Felz’s inebriation exists.

Standards were applied, all right. I should know, I’m in charge of the bureau!

Over the months we have been stonewalled by the excuse of phony police investigations, phony personnel investigations, by ridiculous reading of the law, and by the outright prevarications of Fitzgerald.

Now we’re going to try to get to the bottom of this: to find out who was behind the Felz Free Ride and the obvious creation of a double standard for drunk drivers in Fullerton. We have been advised brusquely by City Attorney employee and sex law specialist Gregory Palmer, Esq. that we have recourse. So we have engaged the services of an attorney, Kelly Aviles, to help us find out what the people in City Hall don’t want us to know.

Aviles is a California Public Records Act specialist who serves as litigation counsel for Californians Aware, an organization that helps journalists in the fight for government transparency. Aviles has represented several major news organizations in lawsuits to turn over unlawfully withheld public records.

Here is the first communication with City Attorney, Richard Jones. It probably won’t be the last.

Click to read (4 pages)

Will all this lead to a lawsuit? That depends on whether the City Attorney decides to obey the law; and perhaps on whether there are three councilmembers with any integrity.

A Step in the Right Direction About Us Fullerton City Council Jennifer Fitzgerald Joe Felz's Wild Ride Law N Disorder Repuglicanism Something Wicked This Way Comes The Crime Beat The Culture of Corruption Union Goons

47 thoughts on “FFFF Fights City Hall for Release of Wild Ride Felz Communications

  1. Good try, guys. Right now this has to be filed under more due diligence.

    Unfortunately at present nothing will be forthcoming because of the active case against Felz in the OC Superior Court which may be ridiculously protracted.

    1. Nothing will be forthcoming. The investigation will be ongoing and therefore, nothing will be released. Nice try. You obviously don’t know how things work.

  2. “Andrew Goodrich, whose frequent indifference to competent police work has been well-documented on these pages”

    LOL! Yes Goodrich has a very interesting relationship with hones police work. Sort of like a very distant cousin.

  3. Attorney Aviles may be interested in asking City Clerk Williams how she handled FOIA (etc) requests when she worked for Brea… She wasn’t always forthcoming there.

    1. Its my understanding that the city clerk doesn’t supply information as it is the particular department that holds the records. A clerk cannot turn over records they are not supplied.

      That’s been my experience here in Fullerton.

      People like to pick on the Clerk’s office, the messengers if you will, for following protocol and passing along the interference handed to them.

      1. This is exactly what I was hoping that FFFF would follow through on in light of the recent Supreme court ruling that clearly ruled in favor of the publics right to access public employees communications devices that are utilized to conduct the publics business.

        The architects of FFFF makes me proud once again!

      2. The public cannot expect to gain access to confidential elements of an ongoing investigation. That is first semester criminal justice 101.

  4. I no longer have my phone. The craziest thing happened. I took my family to the zoo and we were eating churros when I got ambushed by an alligator. He took my phone and handed it off to a giraffe. That guy was ferocious!

    I took all my paper records to Nicole Bernard. She worked 78 hours straight at the paper shredder.

    Danny put about 5000 rounds of 7.62x51mm into our computers from City Hall and the PD.

    Sorry I can’t help you guys. I’d really like to get to the bottom of this myself.

  5. I suggest Fitz and Felz think about hiring reputationdefender.com before 4F gets done exposing all their dirty deeds. Something tells me the truth I ‘s gonna get pretty darn sick before it’s all over.

  6. I for one will say that is a god-awful picture of Fitzgerald and I am sure you do not have her permission to use it. No doubt there is copyright infringement somewhere baked into this whole cake. You should have thought about defeating her in the last election while you had the chance. FFFF’s strategy is all inverted.

    1. ” I am sure you do not have her permission to use it. ”

      I am sure you don’t know anything about Facebook’s terms of service.

      1. Yeah, she obviously liked sharing that close-up mug shot. Purple hair and all. She’s proud of it. Why should her permission be required to share it with the 20,000 morons who voted for her?

    2. ” No doubt there is copyright infringement somewhere baked into this whole cake.”

      Hahahahaha! That’s all you got? get ready for a big shit sandwich, Gretchen. be sure to use that free napkin.

      1. Experts call it negative copyright. The picture has negative value, in other words, it cannot possibly be appropriate it for lucrative purposes, but its publication may cause indigestion .

    3. “You should have thought about defeating her in the last election while you had the chance. FFFF’s strategy is all inverted.”

      I’m sure a lot of people did. But this way is less expensive and more fun.

  7. Wow! I got about a half-page into that letter and got dizzy. So we know the DA filed DUI charges against Felz. Now where do you suppose the DA obtained the evidence it needed to file the case? Think! But try not to strain any muscles in your head.

    1. They didn’t get any evidence from Hughes or Fitzgerald, that’s for sure.

      The issue isn’t Felz’s drunk driving/hit and run. It’s about the cover-up and the obstruction of justice. Of course the City and the DA will claim there’s an ongoing case, blah, blah, blah. But there is no case involving the only important issue: who told the cops on the scene drive Felz home and put him to bed with no breathalyzer and no charges?

      Revelation of the facts related to that would in no way impede the case brought by our stellar DA, a case, ironically, laboriously crafted to fail.

      1. And this is my point Joe. I’m pretty certain that the very next morning, FPD contacted the OC Sheriffs or CHP and turned the entire investigation over to them, which is exactly what they should have done. FPD then turned over body camera footage, witness statements, officers notes, etc. In DUI cases, it is not at all unusual for charges to be filed weeks or months later, which is what happened here. The DA didn’t just wake up one day and say, Hey, let’s charge Joe Felz with a DUI. No. The DA has evidence. An agency investigated the case and turned their findings over to the DA for a final recommendation. Happens every day. It would be the responsibility of FPD, nobody else, to reach out to another agency to investigate and hand over their evidence to that agency. No field sobriety test done, but for all we know, blood could have been drawn later on that night, which would also explain why so much time went by before charges were filed. there was a cover up, Soon we’ll know the truth. Or Felz will plead guilty to lesser charge like reckless driving and that will be the end of it and we won’t know the facts.

        1. “Or Felz will plead guilty to lesser charge like reckless driving and that will be the end of it and we won’t know the facts.”

          Let’s hope that’s what happens. Then there will be no phony pretext to hide the phone calls made by Hughes and Fitzgerald. We’ll find out why our DUI Heroes let the DUI skate.

          P.S. The DA has no evidence that will convict anybody of anything. Because the Fullerton cops gave Wild Ride Joe a ride home, a glass of milk and a cookie. Blood drawn later that night? Hahahaha! Good one.

          1. The DA must have something. Can’t imagine them filing charges with little or no evidence. They’d look like fools. Then again, they’ve looked like fools a time or two before.

            1. “Can’t imagine them filing charges with little or no evidence.”

              I can. And I can also conceive of them prosecuting a case they intend to lose. RatKarcass & Co. are not the least bit interested in doing anything but the bare minimum. And I wonder if the judge might no just throw this out laughing.

        2. “No field sobriety test done, but for all we know, blood could have been drawn later on that night, which would also explain why so much time went by before charges were filed. ”

          If blood was drawn, the DA would not file ANY charges until the results were back, and he was only charged under 23152(a). The thing here is that he was not charged with 23152(b) (BAC over 0.08%) or any of the DUI drug sections. Also, Felz was driven to his HOME, and there is no way a blood draw would have been done there. My sources say there were no FSTs and no blood or breath testing.

          1. “My sources say there were no FSTs and no blood or breath testing.”

            I think it is now understood that no breathalyzer analysis was made. If there had been Hughes would have reported it.

            Please read Hughes’ memo to some of the city council:

            https://www.fullertonsfuture.org/2016/city-manager-felz-involved-in-potential-dui-accident-after-election-night-celebration/

            Hughes says he directed the nameless sergeant to conduct a “preliminary assessment” via FSTs; he then said the sergeant’s “assessment” determined that Felz did not meet the criteria for 23152(a). Re-reading Hughes’ memo, I now wonder if any FST even happened at all.

            Questions:

            Is it normal for a sergeant to perform an FST (if one was even conduced)?

            Is it normal for a sergeant to appear at the scene of a “minor single vehicle collision?”

            Is it normal for a watch commander to contact a Chief of Police to become involved in a DUI-related case?

            What are the “criteria” for meeting 23152(a), and where are those criteria written down?

            Thanks in advance.

            1. Here are the jury instructions for 23152(a):

              The defendant is charged [in Count ] with driving under the
              influence of (an alcoholic beverage/ [or] a drug) [or under the combined
              influence of an alcoholic beverage and a drug] [in violation of Vehicle
              Code section 23152(a)].
              To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must
              prove that:
              1. The defendant drove a vehicle;
              AND
              2. When (he/she) drove, the defendant was under the influence of
              (an alcoholic beverage/ [or] a drug) [or under the combined
              influence of an alcoholic beverage and a drug].
              A person is under the influence if, as a result of (drinking [or
              consuming] an alcoholic beverage/ [and/or] taking a drug), his or her
              mental or physical abilities are so impaired that he or she is no longer
              able to drive a vehicle with the caution of a sober person, using
              ordinary care, under similar circumstances.
              The manner in which a person drives is not enough by itself to establish
              whether the person is or is not under the influence of (an alcoholic
              beverage/ [or] a drug) [or under the combined influence of an alcoholic
              beverage and a drug]. However, it is a factor to be considered, in light
              of all the surrounding circumstances, in deciding whether the person
              was under the influence.
              [An alcoholic beverage is a liquid or solid material intended to be
              consumed that contains ethanol. Ethanol is also known as ethyl alcohol,
              drinking alcohol, or alcohol. [An alcoholic beverage includes
              .]]
              [A drug is a substance or combination of substances, other than alcohol,
              that could so affect the nervous system, brain, or muscles of a person
              that it would appreciably impair his or her ability to drive as an
              ordinarily cautious person, in full possession of his or her faculties and
              using reasonable care, would drive under similar circumstances.]
              [If the People have proved beyond a reasonable doubt that the
              defendant’s blood alcohol level was 0.08 percent or more at the time of
              the chemical analysis, you may, but are not required to, conclude that
              the defendant was under the influence of an alcoholic beverage at the
              time of the alleged offense.]
              129
              0015 [ST: 115] [ED: 100000] [REL: 11] Composed: Fri Feb 26 16:32:42 EST 2016
              XPP 8.4C.1 SP #3 SC_01283 nllp 1284 [PW=516pt PD=720pt TW=380pt TD=580pt]
              VER: [SC_01283-Master:05 Feb 16 02:10][MX-SECNDARY: 22 Feb 16 08:33][TT-: 23 Sep 11 07:01 loc=usa unit=01284-ch2100] 0
              This version provided by LexisNexis® Matthew Bender®, Official Publisher, 800-533-1637,
              http://www.lexisnexis.com/bookstore, for public and internal court use
              [In evaluating any test results in this case, you may consider whether or
              not the person administering the test or the agency maintaining the
              testing device followed the regulations of the California Department of
              Public Health.]
              [It is not a defense that the defendant was legally entitled to use the
              drug.]
              [If the defendant was under the influence of (an alcoholic beverage/
              [and/or] a drug), then it is not a defense that something else also
              impaired (his/her) ability to drive.]
              New January 2006; Revised June 2007, April 2008, August 2015
              BENCH NOTES
              Instructional Duty
              The court has a sua sponte duty to give this instruction defining the elements of
              the crime. Give this instruction if the defendant is charged with a misdemeanor or
              a felony based on prior convictions.
              If the defendant is charged with one or more prior convictions for driving under the
              influence, the defendant may stipulate to the convictions. (People v. Weathington
              (1991) 231 Cal.App.3d 69, 90 [282 Cal.Rptr. 170].) In addition, either the
              defendant or the prosecution may move for a bifurcated trial. (People v. Calderon
              (1994) 9 Cal.4th 69, 77–78 [36 Cal.Rptr.2d 333, 885 P.2d 83]; People v. Cline
              (1998) 60 Cal.App.4th 1327, 1334–1336 [71 Cal.Rptr.2d 41]; People v.
              Weathington, supra, 231 Cal.App.3d at p. 90.) If the defendant does not stipulate
              and the court does not grant a bifurcated trial, give CALCRIM No. 2125, Driving
              Under the Influence or With 0.08 Percent Blood Alcohol: Prior Convictions. If the
              court grants a bifurcated trial, give CALCRIM No. 2126, Driving Under the
              Influence or With 0.08 Percent Blood Alcohol: Prior Convictions—Bifurcated Trial.
              If the defendant stipulates to the truth of the convictions, the prior convictions
              should not be disclosed to the jury unless the court admits them as otherwise
              relevant. (See People v. Hall (1998) 67 Cal. App. 4th 128, 135 [79 Cal. Rptr. 2d
              690].)
              The bracketed paragraph that begins with “If the People have proved beyond a
              reasonable doubt that the defendant’s blood alcohol level was 0.08 percent”
              explains a rebuttable presumption created by statute. (See Veh. Code, § 23610;
              Evid. Code, §§ 600–607.) The California Supreme Court has held that a jury
              instruction phrased as a rebuttable presumption in a criminal case creates an
              unconstitutional mandatory presumption. (People v. Roder (1983) 33 Cal.3d 491,
              497–505 [189 Cal.Rptr. 501, 658 P.2d 1302].) In accordance with Roder, the
              instructions have been written as permissive inferences.
              The court must not give the bracketed paragraph that begins with “If the People
              have proved beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant’s blood alcohol level
              CALCRIM No. 2110 VEHICLE OFFENSES
              130
              0016 [ST: 115] [ED: 100000] [REL: 11] Composed: Fri Feb 26 16:32:42 EST 2016
              XPP 8.4C.1 SP #3 SC_01283 nllp 1284 [PW=516pt PD=720pt TW=380pt TD=580pt]
              VER: [SC_01283-Master:05 Feb 16 02:10][MX-SECNDARY: 22 Feb 16 08:33][TT-: 23 Sep 11 07:01 loc=usa unit=01284-ch2100] 0
              This version provided by LexisNexis® Matthew Bender®, Official Publisher, 800-533-1637,
              http://www.lexisnexis.com/bookstore, for public and internal court use
              was 0.08 percent” if there is no substantial evidence that the defendant’s blood
              alcohol level was at or above 0.08 percent at the time of the test. In addition, if the
              test falls within the range in which no presumption applies, 0.05 percent to just
              below 0.08 percent, do not give this bracketed sentence. (People v. Wood (1989)
              207 Cal.App.3d Supp. 11, 15 [255 Cal.Rptr. 537].) The court should also consider
              whether there is sufficient evidence to establish that the test result exceeds the
              margin of error before giving this instruction for test results of 0.08 percent.
              (Compare People v. Campos (1982) 138 Cal.App.3d Supp. 1, 4–5 [188 Cal.Rptr.
              366], with People v. Randolph (1989) 213 Cal.App.3d Supp. 1, 11 262 Cal.Rptr.
              378].)
              The statute also creates a rebuttable presumption that the defendant was not under
              the influence if his or her blood alcohol level was less than 0.05 percent. (People v.
              Gallardo (1994) 22 Cal.App.4th 489, 496 [27 Cal.Rptr.2d 502].) Depending on the
              facts of the case, the defendant may be entitled to a pinpoint instruction on this
              presumption. It is not error to refuse an instruction on this presumption if the
              prosecution’s theory is that the defendant was under the combined influence of
              drugs and alcohol. (People v. Andersen (1994) 26 Cal.App.4th 1241, 1250 [32
              Cal.Rptr.2d 442].)
              If the evidence demonstrates that the person administering the test or agency
              maintaining the testing device failed to follow the title 17 regulations, give the
              bracketed sentence that begins with “In evaluating any test results in this case.”
              (People v. Adams (1976) 59 Cal.App.3d 559, 567 [131 Cal.Rptr. 190] [failure to
              follow regulations in administering breath test goes to weight, not admissibility, of
              the evidence]; People v. Williams (2002) 28 Cal.4th 408, 417 [121 Cal.Rptr.2d 854,
              49 P.3d 203] [same]; People v. Esayian (2003) 112 Cal.App.4th 1031, 1039 [5
              Cal.Rptr.3d 542] [results of blood test admissible even though phlebotomist who
              drew blood not authorized under title 17].)
              Give the bracketed sentence stating that “it is not a defense that something else
              also impaired (his/her) ability to drive” if there is evidence of an additional source
              of impairment such as an epileptic seizure, inattention, or falling asleep.
              On request, give CALCRIM No. 2241, Driver and Driving Defined.
              Related Instructions
              CALCRIM No. 2111, Driving With 0.08 Percent Blood Alcohol.
              CALCRIM No. 2125, Driving Under the Influence or With 0.08 Percent Blood
              Alcohol: Prior Convictions.
              CALCRIM No. 2126, Driving Under the Influence or With 0.08 Percent Blood
              Alcohol: Prior Convictions—Bifurcated Trial.
              AUTHORITY
              • Elements Veh. Code, § 23152(a).
              • Alcoholic Beverage Defined Veh. Code, § 109; Bus. & Prof. Code, § 23004.
              • Drug Defined Veh. Code, § 312.
              VEHICLE OFFENSES CALCRIM No. 2110
              131
              0017 [ST: 115] [ED: 100000] [REL: 11] Composed: Fri Feb 26 16:32:42 EST 2016
              XPP 8.4C.1 SP #3 SC_01283 nllp 1284 [PW=516pt PD=720pt TW=380pt TD=580pt]
              VER: [SC_01283-Master:05 Feb 16 02:10][MX-SECNDARY: 22 Feb 16 08:33][TT-: 23 Sep 11 07:01 loc=usa unit=01284-ch2100] 0
              This version provided by LexisNexis® Matthew Bender®, Official Publisher, 800-533-1637,
              http://www.lexisnexis.com/bookstore, for public and internal court use
              • Driving Mercer v. Dept. of Motor Vehicles (1991) 53 Cal.3d 753, 768 [280
              Cal.Rptr. 745, 809 P.2d 404].
              • Presumptions Veh. Code, § 23610; Evid. Code, § 607; People v. Milham
              (1984) 159 Cal.App.3d 487, 503–505 [205 Cal.Rptr. 688].
              • Mandatory Presumption Unconstitutional Unless Instructed as Permissive
              Inference People v. Roder (1983) 33 Cal.3d 491, 497–505 [189 Cal.Rptr. 501,
              658 P.2d 1302].
              • Under the Influence Defined People v. Schoonover (1970) 5 Cal.App.3d 101,
              105–107 [85 Cal.Rptr. 69]; People v. Enriquez (1996) 42 Cal.App.4th 661,
              665–666 [49 Cal.rptr.2d 710].
              • Manner of Driving People v. Weathington (1991) 231 Cal.App.3d 69, 84 [282
              Cal. Rptr. 170]; People v. McGrath (1928) 94 Cal.App. 520, 524 [271 P. 549].
              • Legal Entitlement to Use Drug Not a Defense Veh. Code, § 23630.
              • Prior Convictions People v. Weathington (1991) 231 Cal.App.3d 69, 90 [282
              Cal. Rptr. 170].
              Secondary Sources
              2 Witkin & Epstein, California Criminal Law (4th ed. 2012) Crimes Against Public
              Peace and Welfare §§ 272–277.
              2 Witkin, California Evidence (5th ed. 2012), Demonstrative, Experimental, and
              Scientific Evidence § 56.
              6 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 145,
              Narcotics and Alcohol Offenses, § 145.02[1] (Matthew Bender).
              LESSER INCLUDED OFFENSES
              If the defendant is charged with felony driving under the influence based on prior
              convictions, then the misdemeanor offense is a lesser included offense. The court
              must provide the jury with a verdict form on which the jury will indicate if the
              prior convictions have been proved. If the jury finds that the prior convictions have
              not been proved, then the offense should be set at a misdemeanor.
              • Attempted Driving Under the Influence Pen. Code, § 664; Veh. Code,
              § 23152(a); People v. Garcia (1989) 214 Cal.App.3d Supp.1, 3–4 [262 Cal.Rptr.
              915].
              RELATED ISSUES
              Driving
              “[S]ection 23152 requires proof of volitional movement of a vehicle.” (Mercer v.
              Dept. of Motor Vehicles (1991) 53 Cal.3d 753, 768 [280 Cal.Rptr. 745, 809 P.2d
              404].) However, the movement may be slight. (Padilla v. Meese (1986) 184
              Cal.App.3d 1022, 1029 [229 Cal.Rptr. 310]; Henslee v. Dept. of Motor Vehicles
              (1985) 168 Cal.App.3d 445, 450–453 [214 Cal.Rptr. 249].) Further, driving may be
              established through circumstantial evidence. (Mercer, supra, 53 Cal.3d at p. 770;
              People v. Wilson (1985) 176 Cal.App.3d Supp. 1, 9 [222 Cal.Rptr. 540] [sufficient
              CALCRIM No. 2110 VEHICLE OFFENSES
              132
              0018 [ST: 115] [ED: 100000] [REL: 11] Composed: Fri Feb 26 16:32:42 EST 2016
              XPP 8.4C.1 SP #3 SC_01283 nllp 1284 [PW=516pt PD=720pt TW=380pt TD=580pt]
              VER: [SC_01283-Master:05 Feb 16 02:10][MX-SECNDARY: 22 Feb 16 08:33][TT-: 23 Sep 11 07:01 loc=usa unit=01284-ch2100] 0
              This version provided by LexisNexis® Matthew Bender®, Official Publisher, 800-533-1637,
              http://www.lexisnexis.com/bookstore, for public and internal court use
              evidence of driving where the vehicle was parked on the freeway, over a mile from
              the on-ramp, and the defendant, the sole occupant of the vehicle, was found in the
              driver’s seat with the vehicle’s engine running].) See CALCRIM No. 2241, Driver
              and Driving Defined.
              PAS Test Results
              The results of a preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test “are admissible upon a
              showing of either compliance with title 17 or the foundational elements of (1)
              properly functioning equipment, (2) a properly administered test, and (3) a qualified
              operator . . . .” (People v. Williams (2002) 28 Cal.4th 408, 417 [121 Cal.Rptr.2d
              854, 49 P.3d 203].)
              Presumption Arising From Test Results—Timing
              Unlike the statute on driving with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent or more,
              the statute permitting the jury to presume that the defendant was under the
              influence if he or she had a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent or more does not
              contain a time limit for administering the test. (Veh. Code, § 23610; People v.
              Schrieber (1975) 45 Cal.App.3d 917, 922 [119 Cal.Rptr. 812].) However, the court
              in Schrieber, supra, noted that the mandatory testing statute provides that “the test
              must be incidental to both the offense and to the arrest and . . . no substantial time
              [should] elapse . . . between the offense and the arrest.” (Id. at p. 921.)

            2. So what eveidence could the DA possibly have? Body cam footage? Statements from the property owner whose front lawn was mistaken for a driveway?

              1. Sadly true. That’s why the DUI case is designed to lose.

                The hit and run case is going to be much harder for the DA to blow since there is all sorts of evidence stumblejoe tried to drive away from the scene of the tree killing, whatever the cause of his impairment. In fact, the cops may have physically stopped him

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.