By now you’ve likely seen that the City of Fullerton and the Fullerton Police Department cut a deal with Lieutenant Kathryn Hamel and in doing so bypassed CA’s disclosure law known as SB1421.
We just received a tip which gives us some context into this whole Hamel ordeal. Most of the details are buried but a diligent anonymous soul divulged some of it.
First it appears that Lieutenant Hamel was the subject of two internal affairs investigations and at least one of them was completed. This first image shows this much.
We know, thanks to Transparent California, that Fullerton at the time only had 6 Lieutenants.
But to narrow it down more we were also sent the following:
This arrest of Rock Wagner resulted in a lawsuit against the City of Fullerton which we believe is still pending.
Finally we have this image which was sent along to show that even the settlement agreement was written to omit certain facts.
It would seem that Hamel wasn’t innocent of the charges that led to the internal affairs investigations because they rescheduled a “Skelly” hearing against her.
Now let us put that in context with our earlier post:
“all charges against Hamel, including charges relating to dishonesty, deceit, untruthfulness, false or misleading statements, ethics or maliciousness were never resolved or proven because there was no Skelly hearing or opportunity for appeal and, accordingly, are not sustained.”
If you’re wondering what a “Skelly” hearing is I’ll let the city of Fullerton’s own city attorney Jones & Mayer lay it out:
Due process requires that any deprivation of life, liberty, or property be preceded by notice and opportunity for hearing appropriate to the nature of the case. In California, this is referred to as a Skelly hearing or conference, after the California Supreme Court decision in Skelly v. State Personnel Board, 15 Cal. 3d 194 (1975).
The Ninth Circuit held that, at a minimum, these pre-removal safeguards must include notice of the proposed action, the reasons therefore, a copy of the charges and materials upon which the action is based, and the right to respond, either orally or in writing, to the authority initially imposing discipline.
Basically you don’t schedule a skelly hearing unless you’re going to discipline somebody and take something away from them – usually their job.
That last image shows that the city scheduled and then “re-set” the Skelly hearing to “put another date on the calendar” and yet the city dropped all charges claiming there was no hearing. Obviously there can’t be a hearing if you’re just using one as a bargaining chip instead of actually holding your people accountable.
This is shameful.
This whole situation looks like nothing but a way to game SB1421 allowing the police to avoid disclosing “dishonesty, deceit, untruthfulness, false or misleading statements, ethics or maliciousness” on the part of one of their own and hiding behind union bought secrecy to get away with it.
This is shameful and the people deserve better from our public servants which is why SB1421 was passed and signed by Jerry Brown in the first place. Instead of honesty and integrity behind the badge and from our public servants we get corruption and cover-ups.
Shame on Fullerton. Shame on our city council for never doing anything to get the bad apples in FPD under control. Shame on the Fullerton PD brass for playing along and shame on the men and women in law enforcement who turn a blind eye to all of this corruption in order to save their paychecks.
We need our officers and public servants to remember these words often attributed to Edmund Burke;
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.