Freedom of Information Is Supreme

Irwindale

The dates at the beginnings of the listings are approximate. Access to the links may require the use of a library card. Go here for a list of all names in this site.

2009-10: City Manager Mark Breceda, 50, along with retired City Manager Steve Blancarte, 56, finance director Abe De Dios, 65, and former Councilwoman Rosemary Ramirez, 49, faced charges of misappropriating $14,000 in public funds in connection with their attending Broadway shows and baseball games while in New York on city business.

“Four California Officials Accused of Seeing Plays, Games on City Dime,” CNN.com, October 27, 2010

Blancarte pleaded guilty in July 2011 and agreed to repay $5,303 in restitution and $5,000 in fines. Four counts were dropped and he was placed on three years’ probation.

Richard Winton and Jessica Garrison, “Ex-Irwindale City Manager Pleads Guilty to Misappropriation of Funds,” Los Angeles Times, July 14, 2011

An appeals court panel dismissed the charges against the other defendants in April 2013 because, it said, Los Angeles County prosecutors failed to present evidence that would have been favorable to the defendants. The jurists nevertheless described the amount of money spent on the trips as a”shocking” and “an abuse of the public trust.”

Jack Leonard, “Appeals Panel Voids Case Against Irwindale Officials,” Los Angeles Times, April 25, 2013

1972–73: City Councilman Richard Breceda and two real estate dealers, charged in October 1972 with conspiracy to commit criminal libel, extortion, administration of a restricted dangerous drug, administration of chloroform with intent to assist in the commission of a felony, false imprisonment and oral copulation, all accused of a plot to blackmail Mayor Richard Diaz into supporting legalized gambling.

Breceda was acquitted by order of Superior Judge Thomas C. Murphy. He was indicted the next year on twenty counts of violating the Election Code in luring people to the city to vote for a particular candidate, found guilty and sentenced to a year in jail.

William Farr, “Irwindale Mayor Describes Events in Drugging Case,” Los Angeles Times, October 14, 1972, page B-1

“Acquittal of Two in Irwindale Case Ordered by Judge,” Los Angeles Times, November 17, 1972, page A-3

 “Former Irwindale Councilman Gets Year in Vote Fraud,” Los Angeles Times, July 21, 1973, page B-1

William Farr, “Ex-Irwindale Councilman Denies Vote Fraud,” Los Angeles Times, April 3, 1974

1960–61: Former Mayor Justin Garcia, former City Manager James McLean and Ernestine Solorio, deputy registrar of voters, arrested on secret grand jury indictments charging violation of state election laws in recall elections of October 1959 and July 1960.   All counts against Garcia and McLean were dismissed by a Superior Court judge. Solorio was found guilty after a jury trial.

“4 Jailed in Irwindale for Election Violations,” Los Angeles Times, July 26, 1961, page 31

“Irwindale Case Charges Killed,” Los Angeles Times, September 23, 1961, page B-2

“Irwindale Pair Found Guilty in Election Case”], Los Angeles Times, November 9, 1961, page B-2

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