Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A good investigation

We compliment District Attorney Vern Pierson for a thorough investigation of bogus diplomas used by five deputies to obtain 5 percent pay hikes. The investigation, from the report the DA made public last week, appears thorough and informative.

The DA was assisted by one deputy who “agreed to cooperate fully and without any promises of lenience or benefit.” That deputy, after discovering that his four-week diploma was potentially bogus, went on to earn a degree from an accredited institution the old-fashioned way, by taking classes over a period of time. We give that deputy credit for a sense of honor and honesty by talking to the DA without preconditions. That’s what we expect from our law enforcement officers.

We also compliment the DA and the now retired interim sheriff, Fred Kollar, and the county administration for reaching civil settlements with the other four deputies who used unaccredited diploma mills to boost their pay.

It should be pointed out that Kollar launched this investigation when the Mountain Democrat published an investigative article questioning the educational claims of a retired California Highway Patrol officer who was running for sheriff and then dropped out of the race after the article ran. Kollar wanted to check for any skeletons in the Sheriff’s Department’s closet. Apparently there were some.

In fact, degrees were checked throughout county government. It was only the Sheriff’s Department that was found to have bogus degrees. This was a stain on a department charged with enforcing the law. Honesty is the No. 1 requisite for such a responsibility.

We also compliment the new sheriff, John D’Agostini, for not letting things slide now that the five have paid back the money and the DA has determined he lacks the proof required in a court of law. Sheriff D’Agostini is now launching an internal investigation. We await the results of that investigation. The lieutenant who was the primary tout for the bogus diploma mills is obviously a candidate for an internal affairs inquiry if not a change in rank to sergeant.

But most importantly, as pointed out by the DA in his report, the contract with the Deputy Sheriffs Association needs to clarify absolutely that any degrees claimed by deputies must be from proven accredited institutions of higher learning and they should be earned by attending classes.

The excuse that retired Sheriff Jeff Neves gave the DA that his command staff was “too busy” to investigate the educational incentive pay applications is so lame that he should have been embarrassed to have said it. The sheriff is an administrator first of all and last of all, despite D’Agostini’s recent assist in apprehending some liquor store robbers on the lam from Folsom.

By launching his own investigation D’Agostini has made clear there will  be no rubber-stamping in his administration. We are disappointed to learn that Neves apparently rubber-stamped the educational incentive pay applications and sent them on to county payroll. It’s no wonder the county auditor is tearing his hair out.

Mountain Democrat


Discussion | 9 comments

  • ed.momJuly 11, 2011 - 7:37 pm

    Makes me kinda wonder what else Neves rubber stamped in his administration... oh case some of you have forgotten there's still that pesky federal sexual harrassment and discrimination suit hanging over the county..did any one else read it on the Grand jury's report on the county website? Letters of counseling on 2 confirmed sexual harrassment charges by the same person and Neves did what? Promoted the clown... and disciplinary action missing from the GOB's files on 3 other "founded" sexual harrassment complaints? But accourding to one of the commanders there is no progression of discipline because it would take away the discreation of those assigned punishment...From what I've read punishment is promotion with a pay raise. The new Sheriff has his hands full!

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  • 1036- FrankJuly 12, 2011 - 9:48 am

    Neves and Kollar and Capt. Corruption were the three stooges at work and Neves was missing and out jogging most of his time as Sheriff. There was no leadership and no supervision of Sgt. and above. Korrupt Kollar ran the show and rigged the promotions for his friends called the Good Ol' Boys. The majority of the promotions were all " fixed" and the people told in advance what rank to apply for. The Gob's figured they would hand off the Sheriff position among themselves for decades, it almost worked. Had John D. not come forward to challenge them. Their circle of corruption was suddenly threatened and that is why they went after John with every dirty illegal trick they could and at the same time tried to blame the gals in the lawsuit and anyone else they could as they imploded. Now the Gob's goal is to hide and await the 90% retitrement that Neves and Kollar took from the taxpayers and disappeared. Many will try to follow soon.

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  • Oh BrotherJuly 12, 2011 - 10:13 am

    El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson spoke about the case last week. He said he couldn’t go into specifics about why the charge was dropped because the case is ongoing. He did say, “Many people think our responsibility is in seeking convictions. It’s much more; our ultimate responsibility is to seek justice regardless of where that may lead". Quote from Mr. Pierson himself from another case, now is he truly speaking of justice? I think not. When my son was accused of a crime that HE DID NOT COMMIT WITH PROOF FROM BOTH LAW ENFORCEMENT AND PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR, he still had his cronie court appointed attorney spend an hour pressuring my son to plead out. My son has a disability and was way out manuevered by the system. And the system lied to my son and did not seek truth and justice. Please don't tell me that the District Attorneys office is looking for the truth. I will never believe that and he will never prosecute his law enforcement buddies.

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  • 1036- FrankJuly 12, 2011 - 10:37 am

    The circumstances of the D.A's involvement with Turdkilson and the Good Ol' Boys is common knowledge. The blatant illegal actions of the Gob's always seemed to disappear when referred to the D.A. Swept away and quietly disposed of even when blatant and red-handed. For the D.A. to be in a panic and on the radio for Turdkilson was shocking. Then the information was revealed a staff member of the D.A.'s was to be the second in command at the Sheriff's Dept. for Turdkilson. The inter-connectiones are very clear that there was way too much involvement and the D.A. at this point has a conflict of interest with any issues related to Sheriff employees and their crimes and charges and actions. He can't ethically be involved, now the question is who can?

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  • Kit CarsonJuly 12, 2011 - 11:05 am

    "It should be noted that Kollar launched an internal investigation after the MD published the article about another candidates false degree." How timely....Forked-tongue-Fred probably figured the S.O. would be next and for no other reason than covering his tail feathers launched the I.A. before being accused of looking the other way for his GOBs. Make NO MISTAKE people, the ONLY integrity here is the ONE Deputy who came forward. The fact that the others didn't speaks volumes about them. The Lt. who encouraged them to COMMIT FRAUD should NOT be demoted. He should be fired and along with the others, held to conspiracy charges. But then again, this DAs office has never charged any of the crooks of the Sheriffs dept. I am ashamed to have ever been a part of this corrupt dept. Kollar, Neves, Turd, and the rest need to held accountable for their crimminal wrong doings. I shake my head at the lame DAs office for their negligence.

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  • 1036- FrankJuly 12, 2011 - 11:27 am

    It should be clear the diploma investigation was simply a media ploy by Kollar to make the public think they, The Good Ol' Boys, were tough on their own and were cracking down. It was reported Kollar asked to cancel the investigation many months later. The D.A. has to withdraw by state law for ethical reasons on any investigation of the Sheriff's Dept. due to his alignment and enodrsement and campaigning for Turdkilson who was under investigation and still is for sexual harassmant for starters. The whole rotten bunch are inter-connected and have a knack for fooling people as to what IS really going on. Some real reporting and investigating is needed to find the truth. The D.A. and his employees have to excuse themselves from anything relating to county employees.

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  • Fran DuchampAugust 13, 2013 - 10:01 am

    Going down memory lane...

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  • Fran DuchampAugust 13, 2013 - 10:05 am

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  • Fran DuchampAugust 13, 2013 - 10:06 am

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