Thursday, November 11, 2010

Carmen The Clown Kills The Neighborhood Prosecutor Program

On Sunday November 7, 2010, the Los Angeles Daily News reported that Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen "The Clown" Trutanich had gone back on yet another promise and had effectively shut down the Neighborhood Prosecutor Program.

According to the report, Trutanich did not comment directly, but instead hid behind the statements of a chief deputy who blamed the budget cuts for the need to trim down the program to the point where most believe that it will cease to exist. The NPP was started by Trutanich's predecessor, Rocky Delgadillo, and has earned praise as well as the admiration of blighted communities for the way it finds innovative and non-conventional solutions.

According to the Daily News "From 2002 through April of this year, neighborhood prosecutors at 19 police stations attended more than 27,000 community meetings, handled more than 20,000 complaints and prosecuted nearly 9,000 criminal cases, with a conviction rate of nearly 90 percent." That's an impressive success rate, and that's likely the problem; it's Delgadillo's success, not Trutanich's.

Trutanich, who many accuse of being a bully, control freak and an egoist, may have become increasingly upset when he found that his Neighborhood Prosecutors had developed strong bonds with the communities they served. Bonds that were, perhaps, stronger than his own.

It was an open secret that Trutanich resented the fact that many of the Neighborhood Prosecutors were active politically in their spare time. Perhaps if they had been active Republicans Trutanich wouldn't have had a problem with them or the Neighborhood Prosecutor Program. But, of course, they were all Democrats, so perhaps Trutanich cut them off and closed down the program so that he couldn't be accused of bias.

And while Trutanich hides behind one of his chief deputies, and uses the budget as "cover" to kill off political opponents and a valuable program, his cover may get a little thin when questions start to be asked about how his budget was able to stretch to allow Tom Griego, a highly paid civil lawyer in his office, to be transferred to the criminal division just so Griego could call himself a "Criminal Prosecutor" in a run to become a judge. According to the Metropolitan News Enterprise, apparently all Griego did in the criminal division was "read manuals" about crime while drawing a high City salary.

Maybe that 'budget' cover wasn't such a good idea. Remember, we're here to show you what is, and what is not TRU.


Anonymous said...

I agree that Trutanich wanted to close down the NPP, but I don't think it was because he was worried about political considerations. I think it was more about his old fashioned view of the way the office should be run. He's the boss and he doesn't like anyone who disagrees with him. Most of the NPP people were women, and he really doesn't like women who disagree with him.

Anonymous said...

I hope you'll do a lot of digging into Trutanich's fundraising activities. People in the office are pissed off that one of the neighborhood prosecutors who wasn't fired just coincidentally happens to have held a big fundraiser for Trutanich. I'm sure you know who I'm talking about, and there's a paper trail.

Anonymous said...

Chief Damn, be careful. We know who you are. Van Nuys is not as far from City Hall as you think...

Anonymous said...

You should have seen Trutanich after the election when Cooley was ahead. He was like a drunken sailor bragging about how he's going to be the DA as soon as Cooley is sworn in. I guess he didn't count on the voters not "getting with the program" and messing up his plans. He also didn't realize some of his own staff are now turning against him and making their plans.
Shutting down the NPP might have been popular with some of the old doorstops that have been in the CA's office too long, but for everyone else it was like a really cool job they all wanted to have one day. Trutanich just couldn't handle some of his own people getting to popular. I hope it's true that Krekorian is going to run for City Attorney, he will beat Trutanich and make the office what it's supposed to be, a place for serious work, not a PR machine for ambitious egoists.