The recall against Fullerton City Council member Ahmad Zahra has cleared the first hurdle and the required number of signatures on the “Notice of Intention” have been verified by the Fullerton City Clerk.
The reasons for recalling Zahra, for those new to the story, are that he lied to his constituents and that he’s charged with vandalism and battery against a woman. From the copy of the Notice of Intention I was sent:
Soon the question of removing Zahra from office will head to the voters of Fullerton’s District 5. Ultimately they will decide if a man accused of battery against a women should be allowed to continue to serve on Fullerton’s City Council.
Until then our council needs to decide if he should be allowed to represent Fullerton on boards and commissions going forward. Do we want him as our public face right now in light of his pending criminal charges? Or should we look to public servants to have honesty, integrity and to stand up for what’s right?
I’ll leave that for Zahra to answer:
It’s only fair to expect Fullerton City Council man Jesus Silva, his wife and our Assembly representative Sharon Quirk-Silva as well as the rest of the OC Democrats to #BelieveHer in the case of Zahra’s battery charge against a woman of color. It’s what they told us they stand for after all…
There are a few more procedural hurdles before the fine folks of District 5 can sign the official recall petition to force an election to remove Zahra from office.
We’ll keep you posted as to the ongoing progress of this recall effort to save District 5 from the machinations of their current self-serving wannabe politician.
Jesse La Tour over at the Fullerton Observer saw our post and went and asked Ahmad Zahra for a response to the pending charges against him for battery and vandalism. Check out his response:
When asked for a statement from the Observer, Zahra wrote via e-mail, “I deny each and every allegation and am innocent of the charges. I am confident that the truth will come out and expect to be fully exonerated.”
Notice how he doesn’t bother to actually explain anything or offer any defense. This is a typical strategy for politicians who expect you to forget about something while they wheel and deal to make the charges against them disappear down the memoryhole.
The problem here is that this isn’t a he-said/she-said problem – this is an actual arrest by a Fullerton Police Officer and charges filed by the District Attorney.
For Zahra to be innocent of the charges it means that the arresting officer, one Officer Brayley, falsified a police report and the District Attorney filed false charges.
Zahra’s implied allegations are very serious from a sitting Fullerton City Council member and deserve to be investigated. Do we have rogue officers arresting innocent people in Fullerton? Is our District Attorney filing charges which contradict the truth?
We deserve to know.
In the words of Fullerton City Council member Ahmad Zahra himself, as captured by The Fullerton Rag:
“I want you to know that YOUR City, YOUR Chief and YOUR Police Department are committed to accountability, and transparency, and the highest safety standards.”
Let’s see some accountability. Let’s see some transparency. Let’s make sure our officers aren’t arresting innocent people and smearing members of our city. We call on Fullerton PD to release the body camera footage immediately.
Fullerton Council member and wannabe Mayor Pro-Tem Ahmad Zahra has been charged with battery & vandalism here in Fullerton.
You can find a copy of the complaint as filed by the Orange County District Attorney [HERE]. The counts are as follows (emphasis in original):
“Count 1: On or about September 20, 2020, in violation of Sections 594(a) / (b) (2) (A) of the Penal Code (VANDALISM UNDER $400), a MISDEMEANOR, AHMAD ZAHRA did maliciously and unlawfully deface with graffiti and other inscribed material, damage, and destroy CELL PHONE, real and personal property belonging to MONICA F, in an amount less than four hundred dollars ($400).
“COUNT 2: On or about September 20, 2020, in violation of Section 242 of the Penal Code, (BATTERY), a MISDEMEANOR, AHMAD ZAHRA, did willfully and unlawfully use force and violence upon the person of MONICA F.”
The incidents appear to have taken place on 20 September 2020 with nary a word from anybody at City Hall to the public. It looks like Fullerton is once again up to their old Joe Felz & Chief Hendricks tricks.
Before anybody question is there is perhaps ANOTHER Ahmad Zahra being charged, here’s the incident log from Fullerton PD (with Ahmad’s address redacted by me):
Here is the case detail should you want to confirm it yourself with an OC Courts Criminal Case search:
He was arrested for assault but charged with battery as seen in the arrest report versus the criminal complaint filed by the DA.
The arresting officer put “240” which is:
240. An assault is an unlawful attempt, coupled with a present ability, to commit a violent injury on the person of another.
The Courts have him charged with “242” which is:
242. A battery is any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another.
When Zahra was whining and preening that he deserved to be Mayor Pro-Tem he was lying by omission and not telling you that he was, AT THAT VERY MOMENT, facing charges for battery and ticketed with vandalism in what looks like a possible domestic violence crime.
Seems that Zahra was sanctimoniously complaining about what he himself called a “ceremonial” position all the while hoping you wouldn’t find out about his apparent criminal conduct.
We’ll continue to follow this story as it develops. If nothing else it should be interesting to see which OC Dems run to Zahra’s defense or if they’ll stay quiet while hoping, just like with everything else that smears their team, if they ignore it long enough maybe it will just go away and inconvenient victims, including #YesAllWomen, be damned.
If we’re lucky we might get a patented CA (D) “I made a bad mistake, I should have stood up and … drove back to my house” or maybe the “I was set up” defense. Who knows, maybe those are only reserved for the higher-ups in the party.
When I first heard the rumors that Domer was hopping mad about the “leaks” coming out I brushed it off as hearsay. Then I heard it again from a different source. And again. And again still.
At this juncture I’m willing to chalk this rumor up as “Credible but without citation”.
If our city management would worry more about what their own staff is doing and the corruption therein and would be honest about it we wouldn’t need to rely on leaks from anonymous sources. And without those leaks, Domer would have nothing to be mad about in the first place.
Ultimately if he is mad it’s because he believes himself to be a part of the Ruling Elite above we the chattel and is more worried about appearances than solving problems.
The funny part for me is that I’ve tried to cultivate leaks within the city to no avail. All of the people who know me in City Hall are smart enough to not tell me anything for fear of guilt by association.
Yet here we are breaking stories of corruption and malfeasance and we get these leaks at FFFF because enough employees are fed up with the nonsense happening in Fullerton and FPD.
I salute the people who have sent us information because one of the last things Fullerton needs these days is a continuing culture of cover-ups. We respect your privacy and value the contribution to improving accountable, intelligent, and responsible leadership in our town’s government.
For those of you playing along at home we know that two of Fullerton’s Finest (Chief Hendricks & Captain Oliveras) have been put on a paid stay-cation (costing us approximately $1,955/day) for their conduct at a Lady Antebellum concert in Irvine. With City Manager Ken Domer putting Captain Bob Dunn in charge of FPD we are now being run by… Dunn & Domer.
It’s too bad this isn’t a comedy. Instead we’re finding ourselves in more typical Fullerton drama that a little transparency might have avoided. Alas instead of openness and honesty City Manager Ken Domer couldn’t be bothered to let anybody outside of the police department know what was happening in our town at the time, the next day or even the day after that.
In fact per a statement to the OC Register by Jennifer Fitzgerald it took Domer at least 3 days to inform his employers (City Council) of any details (if they have gotten any) and it has taken him 4 days to bother to release information to our fair city by way of a press release. It’s almost like he doesn’t know who he works for anymore.
Fullerton Councilwoman Jennifer Fitzgerald said she knows little about the incident, but “what I know of Chief Hendricks and Captain Oliveras is that they are fantastic guys and fantastic public servants and I look forward to the investigation being complete.”
Let us peruse this fascinating bit of PR garbage:
That’s quite a few words to say almost nothing of substance. What happened? How long is the leave? Was it criminal? Who’s investigating the case?
The City will not provide further information at this time, out of respect for the integrity of the ongoing investigations.
In other words “F U. You don’t have a right to know anything at all because integrity of an ongoing case”.
We already know from an email from the City of Irvine there is plenty to see here and we deserve details. I’m tired of this mentality that it’s okay to publicly and loudly (Instgram?!) shame societal nobodies when they screw up but when our overlords do the same all of the sudden we need to worry about “integrity” and bury the details behind a wall of BS.
The first bit of BS that we need to knock down here is that this isn’t just some boilerplate investigation that “related entirely to allegations of off-duty conduct”.
This is an allegation of battery against an EMT. By possibly armed off-duty officers. The alleged battery alone falls under CA Penal Code 243(c)(1) unless the injury was serious and then it elevates.
(c) (1) When a battery is committed against a[n][…] emergency medical technician […] engaged in the performance of his or her duties, whether on or off duty, […] and an injury is inflicted on that victim, the battery is punishable by a fine of not more than two thousand dollars ($2,000), by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for 16 months, or two or three years.
Next we have to ask who will oversee this investigation? Why were no arrests made for this alleged battery?
How is the District Attorney involved? Which internal investigator are we planning to hire? Is Irvine being allowed to investigate this case?
These are all pertinent questions especially considering the incestuous relationships we have with other departments. Remember that Irvine’s Chief of Police, Mike Hamel, is married to Katherine Hamel who herself is a Lieutenant under Captain Oliveras and Chief Hendricks.
Is Irvine’s Chief Hamel really going to investigate his wife’s boss? Is this why no arrests were made?
Regarding the “ongoing investigation” angle – that’s the same claptrap the city is still throwing at us over the Joe Felz accident and cover-up that happened 657 days ago. #SorryNotSorry that we can’t trust you and your comrades in obfuscation in the City Attorney’s office to come clean Mr. Domer.
If Fullerton’s City Manager Ken Domer really cared about transparency and “integrity” he wouldn’t hide behind subterfuge and lies of omission. He would tell we the citizenry about what is happening, how it is happening and how we can be assured that another Danny Hughes Felzian cover-up isn’t taking place in our city.
Domer would do well to read his own interview with the OC Register when he said;
You cannot operate local government without partnerships, without collaboration, without openness, transparency.
I’ll be on with John & Ken during the 3pm hour (1500) discussing this issue. You can listen live on KFI’s website or on your radio at AM640.