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Like most recent Costa Mesa clown shows, this one was really all about Council candidate Jim “Riggy” Righeimer and his jihad on the city’s policemen and firefighters. And we’ll look at all that in a little bit.
But the star of Saturday’s little comedy / press conference was loyal Riggy ally Costa Mesa Councilman Eric Bever – both the meanest Costa Mesa Councilman (yes, meaner than Mansoor) and easily the laziest, having boycotted so many meetings and closed sessions for petty reasons that people are looking into how the City can dock his pay.
But I hadn’t really noticed what a whiney-ass pantywaist he was, until his Saturday event on a godforsaken corner of Newport Blvd. (video below) Accompanied by Riggy, Riggy’s brother-in-law and pitbull attorney Mark Bucher, and for some damn reason the towering Moorlach. (What are you thinking, Moorlach? You lose 1/8 of your gravitas each time you appear with these crooked buffoons.)
As this was billed as a news conference announcing “potential voter intimidation violations by the Costa Mesa Police Department,” the few people who showed up expected something much more dramatic and sinister than what they got. Evidently, according to Bever and his white-bearded pal Chris Eric, they were hanging up Righeimer campaign signs on some nearby fences, when a couple of cops drove by, looked at them, and gave them “stink-eye.” That’s right, “stink-eye.” The cops also swung by a couple more times, and apparently snapped a picture of their activity.
Bever and his pal felt, or more likely pretended to feel, very shaken and intimidated by this. The first thing many of us thought was, well, maybe now they have just the slightest inkling of what it’s like to be a Latino in Costa Mesa, Bever’s and Mansoor’s “Rule of Law City.”
I happened to talk to a police spokesman yesterday (at the Tewinkle Park rally where all of Costa Mesa’s public safety workers came out to endorse Phu Nguyen.) As far as the description of the “incident” went, it was accurate, innocent, and standard operating procedure. The cops saw a couple of men putting up big signs on private property, which could have been illegal – at first glance they could also have been illegally removing or vandalizing someone else’s signs. So they swung back by, and the passenger cop said, “Hey, isn’t that one of the Councilmen?” Then they swung by again and took a quick snapshot – something that’s both legal and standard to do. Then they phoned their Chief – Chief Shawkey – to ask if they should do anything, and he said not to bother. The same Chief Shawkey that Bever called a few minutes later to complain and demand an investigation. I sure hope not a single taxpayer dime is wasted on one. As far as “stink-eye” is concerned, between laughter the spokesman asked, “What do you think, if a cop sees someone doing something possibly illegal, he’s gonna smile and wave?”
This press conference was all just another episode – a particularly ridiculous one – in Jim Righeimer’s jihad on Costa Mesa cops and firefighters. But it seems particularly wrong and corrosive of public trust for a city leader like Eric Bever to be sowing distrust and fear of his city’s police force, especially over such a petty non-incident. Once Costa Mesans defeat Riggy November 2, they should really get to work recalling Bever. For a lot of reasons.
Here’s the real kicker of Saturday’s press conference: Chris McEvoy, Riggy’s main rival for the open Council seat, was there tape recording the proceedings, so that he could think about it and respond to it later. And guess who walked right up to his face and took his picture in an intimidating way, stink-eye and all? ERIC BEVER. I guess it’s okay if you’re one of the gang! Chris spoke to Barbara Venezia later (as you’ll see in the video)
I don’t like to hear about police driving by and intimidating people putting up signs, though I don’t know if that’s the greatest form of intimidation. But if they’re gonna investigate this, I would like them to also investigate Righeimer trying to intimidate Katrina Foley into voting him onto the Fairgrounds negotiating committee by saying if he didn’t get on he would “blow up the deal.” To me that’s a bigger deal … This is all just getting to be ridiculous.
Maybe he meant to say, RIG-DICULOUS. Here now, enjoy a couple of videos, and Costa Mesans vote McEvoy and Leece!
Meet Jim Righeimer.