Monday, August 08, 2011

The D.A., (no, not ours) the lost revolver and the lieutenant, Part I

His pal, Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas... in the news again.

The Watchdog readily admits this is a meandering, tortuous tale involving an elected county official, a missing revolver and an Anaheim police lieutenant who dared to step into the fray. -

But, dear readers, we’re crossing our fingers you will stick with us to the bitter end of this two-part series to find out just how it came to be that the only person punished was the lieutenant who tried to do the right thing.

The official in this tale is Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas, who may, or may not, have needed the gun for personal protection....

The DA, the lost revolver and the lieutenant, Part II -

...The sergeant interviewed Major as he was told, but things apparently didn’t quite add up. He went to his supervisor, Lt. Dave Vangsness. The sergeant said he figured Rackauckas didn’t want the publicity, given Welter’s recent issues with missing guns, internal police documents show.
Things didn’t add up to Vangsness either. There were more questions than answers, starting with why Hunter went directly to the sergeant, why Rackauckas had someone else’s gun for so many years and how it suddenly disappeared....

Rackauckas would eventually fax in a statement of how he came to have Blankenship’s gun, and the burglary sergeant would eventually interview Blankenship. Their stories didn’t match up – and Vangsness pressed forward with the investigation. Vangsness wrote that he told his superiors on at least four separate occasions he intended to forward the case to state prosecutors.

Vangsness called Senior Assistant Attorney General Gary Schons on Dec. 15, 2009 to brief him on the case.

“I asked Lt. Vangsness how it would look if someone outside law enforcement, like the press (as often seems to happen in these types of circumstances), found out that this matter had been reported to your department, investigated, a possible crime identified under these circumstances involving two of the highest ranking law enforcement officials in the county, and not reported to the Attorney General for review,” Schons later wrote to Anaheim PD....

“What is troubling about the reprimand is that Lt. Vangsness attempted to and did do the right thing – he tried to convince his superiors to allow him to pursue the proper course of action in investigating and reporting the case, which they rejected or slyly refused to support, and then he did the right thing in reporting the case to the Attorney General,” Schons wrote.

“For his effort, he got reprimanded and had other duties stripped from him.”

The revolver remains missing.

1 comment:

  1. Apparently the DA might charge some Fullerton Police Officers for killing a mentally ill man. Sound familiar?

    OMG, can be that far behind? Has Rose finally moved on from Paul and found a new diversion? Enquiring minds want to know!


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