Breaking News: Fullerton Threatens Local Blog – Again

The city is threatening to sue us… again.

Let’s have a look at the newest letter from the city (PDF HERE) before getting into why this is happening:

Dear Ms. Aviles:

VIA CERTIFIED MAIL RETURN RECEIPT REQUESTED

As legal counsel for the City of Fullerton, I write, pursuant to California Government Code section 6204 et seq., to notify you, as legal counsel to the owner(s) and/or operator(s) of the Friends for Fullerton’s Future (FFFF) blog, that the City of Fullerton has reasonable grounds to believe that owner(s) and/or operator(s) of the FFFF blog are in unlawful possession of records belonging to the City of Fullerton. The records were taken and used by FFFF blog owner(s) and/or operator(s) without the City’s authorization and fall within the definition of “record” under California Government Code Section 6204(a)(2), as well as the definition of “public records” under California Government Code § 6252(e), and are described as follows:

Any and all records obtained from the City of Fullerton’s Dropbox account (https://cityoffullerton.com/outbox) that were not directly provided by the City to Joshua Ferguson or any of FFFF’s agents or associates through an emailed link, including, but not limited to, records contained in a folder named “prl 919 – Josh Ferguson.”

Therefore, pursuant to Govemmentt Code section 6204, within twenty (20) calendar days of receiving this notice, the owner(s) and/or operator(s) of the Friends for Fullerton’s Future blog are hereby directed to either:

  1. (1)  Return the above-referenced records to the City of Fullerton, as previously requested; or
  2. (2)  Respond in writing and declare why the above-referenced records do not belong to the City of Fullerton. Ifthe owner(s) and/or operator(s) of the Friends for Fullerton’s Future blog do not deliver the above-described records, or do not respond adequately to this notice and its demand within the required time, we will immediately thereafter petition the Superior Court of Orange County for an order requiring the return of these records.

We further note that the FFFF blog has posted many of the confidential City documents after receipt of our office’s June 13, 2019 cease-and-desist email. (A copy of that email is enclosed herein). Many, if not all, of the confidential City records posted to the FFFF blog are explicitly exempted from disclosure under the California Public Records Act, would not have been provided to Mr. Ferguson or FFFF agents or associates in response to a Public Records Act request, and could only have been obtained without the City’s express authorization. Such records posted to the FFFF blog are confidential and exempt from disclosure pursuant to the following authorities:

  • “Preliminary drafts, notes, or interagency or intra-agency memoranda that are not retained by the public agency in the ordinary course of business, if the public interest in withholding those records clearly outweighs the public interest in disclosure.” Cal. Gov’t Code § 6254(a);
  • “Records pertaining to pending litigation to which the public agency is a party, or to claims made pursuant to Division 3.6 (commencing with Section 810), until the pending litigation or claim has been finally adjudicated or otherwise settled.” Cal. Gov’t Code § 6254(b);
  • “Personnel, medical, or similar files, the disclosure of which would constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.” Cal. Gov’t Code § 6254(c);
  • Law enforcement investigative records. Cal. Gov’t Code § 6254(f); and
  • “Records, the disclosure of which is exempted or prohibited pursuant to federal or state law, including, but not limited to, provisions of the Evidence Code relating to privilege.” Cal. Gov’t Code § 6254(k), which includes the following privileges:

o Attorney-client privileged records. Cal. Evid. Code 950 et seq.; Roberts v. City of Palmdale, 5 Cal. 4th 363 (1993);

o Attorney work product. Cal. Civ. Proc. Code § 2018.010 et seq.;
o Peace officer personnel records. Cal. Penal Code § 832.7 et seq.; and o Confidential closed session information. Cal. Gov’t Code § 54963.

FFFF’s unauthorized access and misuse of the City’s clearly privileged and exempted documents constitute a violation of California Penal Code section 502, which grants civil remedies (including compensatory damages, attorney’s fees and potential punitive damages) to any persons or entities injured by any violations thereof. See Cal. Pen. Code § 502(c), (e).

As such, unless FFFF complies with the demands set forth in the City’s June 13, 2019 cease and desist letter within 24 hours, the City will have no choice but to pursue all criminal and civil remedies available to it under the law.

Bruce A. Lindsay

Fullerton Cease and Desist 2 Page 01 Fullerton Cease and Desist 2 Page 02

What is this all about?

For those in the cheap seats we at Friends For Fullerton’s Future broke news story after new story by publishing documents that the city didn’t want disclosed and tying those documents to local events and items of public interest. Those stories include, but are not limited to:

The city settling with a police officer to sidestep disclosure laws regarding police misconduct.

The results of a Body Worn Camera audit for a School Resource Police Officer who had, what appears to be, child pornography on his (or perhaps department issued) cell phone.

An insurance payout for an accident that destroyed a city vehicle.

Likely fraud by city employees costing over $50,000 worth of waste/theft.

Possible Accounting fraud within the city budget used to hide salary costs.

A city council member specifically targeting one businesses.

Massive Police Overtime abuse that went on for 6 years.

Evidence that the city is lying and violating the California Public Records Act.

And more, and more, and more, and more, and more, and more, and more and more.

In short, they’re mad that we’re doing what journalists are supposed to do daily. We’re using information to piece together stories in order to inform the public.

These latest threats are meant to serve as a chilling effect to silence people who would dare impugn the character of Fullerton with facts the city wants obscured. I’m hesitant to head to city hall or go to council meetings lately knowing that the city is targeting me personally for the use of free speech on this news site / blog. And that’s really the point of these types of threats – to silence dissenters.

How will we respond to this latest salvo by the city? I reckon we’ll confer with our legal counsel and act accordingly.

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49 thoughts on “Breaking News: Fullerton Threatens Local Blog – Again

    1. I think the real question would be how did these records get out in the first place Obvious leaked by someone inside at or above rank of Lt. I smell a kat on this one. As in kat 5 Lt Katy. This is exactly her slimy style

  1. The best part of that whole piece was Josh calling himself and a “Journalist”. You work at a fucking camera shop. I guess we’re about to find out if those documents were legally obtained. You talk about how corrupt the city is so wouldn’t it be ironic if you broke the law in an attempt to “Break the story”

        1. Seems someone in Admin keeps changing and/or deleting my posts. Hmmm, it’s only free press if it suits your agenda FFFF. And you thought you were a reputable news source? Naw.

          1. It’s almost like there’s a concerted effort from someone to force a reporting group to not look like a reporting group.

            Ruh roe.

            1. How do hits = reputable source of news?

              Infowars, ZeroHedge, and Drudge get lots of hits and their info is biased crap.

                1. Ouija board? Weird. I’d have used IP addresses or cookies to pierce my users’ implied offer of anonymity.

                  Whatever works!

    1. A journalist is anybody who calls himself one.

      Just like you call yourself an idiot, I presume. If you don’t, start.

  2. Awesome. They move F’ing with you guys. They gonna make you spend as much money as they can to defend this, or force someone to do a ton of work for free for you guys. Well played Fullerton. I hope they beat FFFF for over a million. So many people have lost POBAR cases for this exact same thing. Go Fullerton. Josh is gonna have to call Bushala for &500k again lol.

    1. This is just the City Attorney running up a bill, dummy. The City will lose AND pay for our lawyer! LOL.

      1. Imagine being mad omegalul. get a life you virgin UwU. Also if you think your poor ass can afford a lawyer you better think again. Why do grown ass people complain about nothing omegalul.

  3. So sounds like the City has shitty digital hygiene and accidentally provided more information that it thought it was? I should do my job better.

    1. Upon reading this I came to the same conclusion. Josh requested info, was sent a Dropbox link and some moron at the city shared the entire Dropbox folder and not just the one they wanted too. Seems like a pretty dumb way to spend a bunch of money on Fullerton’s side.

      1. WFN, city staffers and city cil people have nothing to lose.

        Other than covering up for each other incompetence, they don’t give a rats ass about how much things cost, or anything else.

        4F + 99
        Fullerton tax payers -99.

        And, there you have it!

        Back to square one.

        The government never learn’s from the past.

        They only get dumb & dumber.

  4. Imagine being mad omegalul. get a life you virgin UwU. Also if you think your poor ass can afford a lawyer you better think again. Why do grown ass people complain about nothing omegalul.

  5. According to the City attorney’s letter: “Preliminary drafts, notes, or interagency or intra-agency memoranda that are not retained by the public agency in the ordinary course of business, if the public interest in withholding those records clearly outweighs the public interest in disclosure.” Cal. Gov’t Code § 6254.

    Assuming, this blogger requested information to FPD, & FPD or the City, sent way too much info by mistake. The blogger obtained the info, within the ordinary course of business for the blogger, even so was Accidently. On the other side, for FPD , this info was not obtained within their course of regular business.
    Because, this information or documents, were not intended to be sent to this blogger, The judge most likely is going to be in favor of FPD. Unless This blogger can proof that the information on this blog outweighs the public interest in disclosure for the safety of the citizens. For Example.

    The Story that is post in this blog about results of a Body Worn Camera audit for a School Resource Police Officer who had, what appears to be, child pornography on his (or perhaps department issued) cell phone.

    FPD committed a Violation. FPD has a duty to inform the public of the danger that this officer had caused to one citizen. FPD has the duty to share the information with the public, in case that may be more victims. This can be a defense for the blogger. The fact that FPD did not disclose the information of this crime. FPD actions meets the elements for Criminal Negligence, Criminal Negligence is the reckless disregard for the safety of others and the willful indifference to an injury that could have follow an act.

  6. A blogger has some immunity, However, the courts in California provides a higher level of immunity for Journalists, in order for the court to grant to this blogger a higher immunity to publish. The blogger must proof to the court that he has a license as journalist. It doesn’t matter where you got the licenses, It can be from a bachelor degree or it can be those licenses that people buy for 100 to 500 dollars. Some Bloggers buy it to avoid some liabilities. It doesn’t really matter where you get the license, as soon as you can proof the judge that you have one.

    1. Whistle blower is protected. If it goes far enough up the courts. That will require scrutiny by lawyers. They have a tendency to find stuff people don’t see. Fullerton may not want that. Anyway the cat is out of the bag now. Even if he did return the documents the internet never forgets.

  7. Truth is an absolute defense.
    Thank you for all you do to keep us informed and shame on the City using their legal counsel for using intimidating tactics that only increases their exposure for harassment of a citizen exercising free speech.

    1. Here’s the best part.

      Let’s say what the city alleges is true, and that’s dubious on its own, but let’s say that it is.

      Katy Hammel, et al are going to get a massive checks from the City of Fullerton for wild incompetence.

      Way to go, Jones and Meyer. You just fucked every single one of us with your arrogance and stupidity.

  8. The issue here is if, Friends for Fullerton Future is in violation for disclosure of the FPD emails & records. FPD is not argument that the documents are fake.
    FPD is trying to tell you, that because the blogger disclosed emails that were not intended to deliver them to this blogger, the disclosure of the info in the documents may hurt third persons. If that is the case, FPD may prevail in a court of law.

    Second Issue, is if the blogger has the right to disclosure the info from these link emails that were accidentally delivered to the blogger email.
    Because the intent of FPD was not intended to delivered this info to this blogger, the judge most likely is going to order you to remove them from the web.

    Usually the FPD e mails has little letters on the end that reads:
    If you get this email by mistake please discard it and return it to the sender.

    I would just closed pages in the blog temporarily to avoid any litigation.
    Then make a copy
    And then instructed one member of the public to post the info on your blog.
    By law , a blogger has not liability for what the public post in the blog.

  9. Oh, never mind this was not an email sent by mistake from FPD.
    It was an file folder that they sent by mistake. I am assuming. Therefore those little letters on the end of the email doesn’t apply , to return the info, as FPD sent it by mistake, in other words the file folder 1919 were sent it to the blogger by own FPD retarded people . Let’s call it voluntary by itself.
    They have to us and we take it,
    I wonder who was the retard that sent the file folder, I bet he /she is in trouble.
    Could be the secretary of the new chief, of another retard cop? Oh well,

  10. Have you ever noticed around City Hall, the roads are clean and kept paved with no cracks or pot holes, and the sidewalks and curbs show no signs of crumbling? Not the case when you live just a few blocks away. It pretty much looks like a war zone and you can sure bet, if any of those government officials moved onto my street, it would be pristine in a matter of days.

  11. What a crock of bullshit. I thought this was already settled law?

    So this is how the American justice system works? Journalist publishes evidence of government misconduct. Government threatens journalist with legal action. Government authorities ignore misconduct. WTF?

    Land of the Free and Home of the Brave??? My ass.

    This is a direct attack on people who expose dirty governments.

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