Support the Dortch Family
Our friend Kim Dortch and her family have been victims of police tyranny in Riverside county. Please listen to and share her interview anyway you can. This is very very important this is an issue that effects all of us as human beings. You think this can’t happen to you? Well it can.
LISTEN TO INTERVIEW
https://www.facebook.com/kimberly.tidwelldortch?fref=ts&ref=br_tf (Facebook Page)
RECENT HAPPENINGS IN THE DORTCH FAMILY CASE
OPEN LETTER TO RIVERSIDE DA –
DISQUALIFY YOUR OFFICE FROM CASE INVOLVING ACCUSATIONS OF MISCONDUCT BY LAW ENFORCEMENT AND PROSECUTORS BECAUSE ALMOST 80% OF YOUR CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS CAME FROM THEM
Riverside County District Attorney
3960 Orange Street
Riverside, CA 92501
RE: People v. David Dortch, Case No. SWF1400013
Request for Recusal
Dear Mr. Hestrin:
Please consider this letter to be a formal request for you to recuse your office from the criminal prosecution of Dr. David Dortch because of a conflict of interest. Almost 80% of your campaign contributions came from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Association and the Riverside County District Attorney’s Association, and conduct of the Sheriff’s Office and DA’s Office is at issue in the case. This makes it impossible for you to fulfill your obligation as a prosecutor to act in an even-handed manner.
As you are aware, a District Attorney’s office is “obligated not only to prosecute with vigor, but also to seek justice. . . .” The District Attorney “is the representative not of an ordinary party to a controversy, but of a sovereignty whose obligation to govern impartially is as compelling as its obligation to govern at all; and whose interest, therefore, in a criminal prosecution is not that it shall win a case, but that justice shall be done.” See People v. Conner, 34 Cal.3d 141, 193 Cal.Rptr. 148, 666 P.2d 5 (1983) (emphasis added). If there is evidence that a District Attorney has a conflict of interest or a “reasonable possibility the district attorney’s office may not be able to exercise its discretionary function in an evenhanded manner,” the district attorney should be disqualified from handling the case. See Penal Code § 1424(a)(1) and People v. Merritt, 19 Cal.App 4th 1573, 24 Cal.Rptr. 2d 177 (1993).
It has come to our attention through public campaign contribution records that your successful campaign against incumbent Paul Zellerbach was primarily financed by the Riverside County District Attorney’s Association (directly and through its PAC) and the Riverside Sheriffs’ Association (through its PAC and Public Education Fund). Records show that $510,000 of just over $900,000 in your total monetary campaign contributions came from the DA’s Association and $202,000 from the Sheriffs’ Association. That is just shy of 80% of the total monetary contributions you received. I am sure you will want their support in subsequent elections also.
This creates a conflict of interest with Dr. Dortch’s case because the prosecution is grounded on actions by law enforcement officers that the Dortch family have alleged in court papers overstepped constitutional bounds and in some cases crossed the line into criminal offenses, and allegations that the prosecutors handling the case are not exercising their discretion in an even-handed manner.
One example of this is that Dr. Dortch’s counsel has pointed out to the DA in court pleadings at least three examples of falsification of police reports on material matters (a criminal offense under California law), including differing reports of the identity of officers who conducted a search warrant and notation of supervisor approval of police reports days or months before the reports were prepared. Furthermore, the police reports underlying Dr. Dortch’s case include an explicit notation that items supposedly constituting a “drug lab” that Dr. Dortch is accused of having were destroyed. Destruction of evidence is also a criminal offense under California law.
The DA’s office has been in possession of this information for months, yet there is no indication that any action is being taken to either investigate or criminally charge any law enforcement officers involved in this conduct.
The Dortch family has challenged various actions of the Murrieta Police Department, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office, other law enforcement officers, and the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office in a civil lawsuit brought almost six months before criminal charges were filed against Dr. Dortch. The DA’s office provided documentation to Dr. Dortch and his counsel showing that a Riverside County Sheriff’s Office investigator explicitly requested further action to be taken against Dr. Dortch, that it was “needed … due to pending lawsuit.” Dr. Dortch was arrested, without an arrest warrant, by a police officer who was at the time a named defendant in the Dortch’s civil lawsuit during the pendency of the case.
Also as reflected in the court file, the DA’s office has stated that evidence that may help the defendant (Dr. Dortch) or hurt the prosecution exists in Dr. Dortch’s case, relating to a Riverside County Sheriff’s investigator involved in the case, but this evidence has not been turned over to Dr. Dortch and his counsel. Instead, the DA’s office has indicated that it will not call this witness who could damage their case and help Dr. Dortch’s case at trial.
If all that weren’t enough, one of the Deputy DAs prosecuting Dr. Dortch left a voicemail message for Dr. Dortch’s attorney indicating that he had a plea offer on the table, but inferring that Dr. Dortch should drop the civil lawsuits and stop making trouble. He stated “[i]in terms of, I think the civil suit with Murrieta and so forth I would say he [Dr. Dortch] should stop throwing good money after bad. Murrieta is a nice town. … He seems like a guy who’s kind of got his stuff together in a lot of ways and may not want to keep on making trouble for himself . . .”
“Making trouble for himself” apparently refers to the fact that at each stage of this prosecution, every time Dr. Dortch avails himself of his constitutional rights, the prosecution levels more criminal charges against him. Being unable to even get an arrest warrant, Dr. Dortch was arrested anyway by a named defendant in a civil lawsuit. Let me repeat that – a defendant in a civil lawsuit made a warrantless arrest of one of the plaintiffs in the case! And not for any new alleged offense, but with respect to events occurring more than six months earlier, and with new and conflicting incident reports being created a week before the arrest. The Deputy DA on the case has also insisted on continuing prosecution against Dr. Dortch on a statute recently held to be unconstitutional, Penal Code § 295, et seq. (the DNA collection law).
All in all, there is significant indication that your office is not in a position to “do justice” or “exercise its discretionary function in an evenhanded manner.” A trial judge can disqualify a district attorney from participating in prosecution of a criminal charge when a determination is made that an attorney “suffers from a conflict of interest which might prejudice him against the accused and thereby affect, or appear to affect, his ability to impartially perform the discretionary function of his office. See People v. Superior Court (Greer) (1977) 19 Cal.3d 255, 267, 137 Cal. Rptr. 476, 561 P.2d 1164. That is clearly the situation here and that is why we are asking you to voluntarily recuse your office.
You owe your campaign success to the Riverside County District Attorneys Association and the Riverside County Sheriffs Association. You cannot exercise your discretionary function in an evenhanded manner when decisions on whether it is appropriate for this case to proceed involve an obligation to closely scrutinize actions of your office and the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office. If you even take a step towards commencing criminal or misconduct investigations of Deputy DAs or law enforcement officers, I would imagine that you could kiss any plans for a future financial support in subsequent elections from these organizations goodbye.
I am asking that you do not put yourself in the position of giving the appearance that you have been “bought” by law enforcement and prosecutors in the County of Riverside, and instead recuse your office from this case and ask that a special prosecutor being appointed to handle the case against Dr. Dortch instead. If the people whose conduct is challenged as being inappropriate did nothing wrong, they will be exonerated in the process. If they are guilty of misconduct, however, you should not protect them.
I will look forward to your recusal from the case of People v. Dortch within the next seven (7) days.
Melody A. Kramer, Esq.
Kramer Law Office, Inc.
4010 Sorrento Valley Blvd, Suite 400
San Diego, CA 92121(855) 835-5520
http://www.gnosticmedia.com/interview-kim-dave-freeman-burt-murrieta-pd-will-respect-authoritah-184/ (Interview Number 2)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUUgdwxB4lg (RED ICE INTERVIEW November 2014)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bdPXQx8jTH4&list=UU_lvvd3d3K7NgLtWstl6YNg ( Gnostic Media interview Number 2 with Jan Irvin)
Thank you for your support.
Peace, Truth, and Love