Friday, August 24, 2012

Righeimer Calls Press Conference (Updated)*


The Orange County Register, in their story at the link below, has identified the man who called 911 in this case as a discredited former Riverside Police Officer named Chris Lanzillo and further identifies him as working for the law firm of Lackie, Dammeier & McGill, the firm that, until today, represented the Costa Mesa Police Officer's Association!  Go to the links below for both the Register and Daily Pilot updated stories.  The Daily Pilot has transcribed some of the taped conversations with Lanzillo and has new quotes from Righeimer.


Here's a link to the KCAL 9 video clip shown Friday night that includes parts of the 911 call.  Click HERE.  Reporter Stacey Butler gets part of the story wrong.  The law firm was fired by the Costa Mesa Police Officer's Association Friday, not last week, as she states. 


Here's a link which contains an earlier KCAL 9 report which includes a video clip of Righeimer Tuesday night at the council meeting,  plus two radio clips from KNX1070.  Click HERE


According to reports from the scene, in a hastily-called press conference today in front of City Hall, Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer spent about 20 minutes ranting about union influence in Costa Mesa, accused former City Clerk Julie Folcik of intentionally failing to submit the documents to place his Charter on the June ballot and said that somebody was "paid to follow me around town and set me up for a DUI in front of my kids..."  You can read Joe Serna's account of this press conference HERE. *You can read the Orange County Register version of events HERE.

Television news media was on-hand and will likely cover this press conference in news programs this afternoon and evening.  Channels 2, 4, 7 and 9 were present.  When I know more about their coverages I'll report anything that seems relevant.

It's my understanding that the CMPD knows the identity of the person who reported the alleged DUI behavior.  According to Serna's piece, "he is a white male in his 40s with blondish hair and a goatee" driving a Kia with Riverside dealership license frames.  An investigation is under way in this case.  So, we wait...

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Anonymous I smell setup said...

This stinks.

"A source familiar with the case confirmed the person who made the call is not from Costa Mesa or anywhere else in Orange County."

Sure does smell like a PI or other paid operative. I hope that CMPD gets to the bottom of this quickly and, if it is determined that this was a setup, prosecutes the caller for making a false police report.

8/24/2012 03:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Mary Ann O'Connell said...

Wow! Lord Macbeth is getting pretty paranoid.

If he really did outright accuse Julie of deliberately sabotaging the election filing I hope she sues the pants off of him!

8/24/2012 03:26:00 PM  
Anonymous Mike McNiff said...

It certainly does stink. But perhaps news conferences and the like shouldn't be called and pretty heavy accusations shouldn't be made until that person's ID/culpability/motivation is determined. But hey, all the stations showed up and this will be all over the news (not that anyone watches local TV news anymore).

So if it's determined he's not union affiliated, will Righeimer call another press conference to say he was wrong? Doubt it...

8/24/2012 03:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Dr. Pepper said...

The real crime here is that Gary is charging $ 6.00 for two diet Cokes, what a rip-off.

8/24/2012 03:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Mike O'Reilly said...

Yes, we all hope lawbreakers will be arrested. You have a profound sense of the obvious, sir.

8/24/2012 03:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Brown Act said...

What if anything did Righeimer discuss with Monahan at his bar before heading home?

8/24/2012 04:39:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Take 3 to tango... You will recall that this is likely the site of their scheme to outsouce half the city staff... It's just business as usual for them.

8/24/2012 04:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Disgusted Republican said...

Could have been an honest call- der rigmeister could have been on his phone or texting ( these laws don't apply to him) and driving erratically. Could have been a concerned citizen. Just because your license plate from is from a car dealer in Riverside does not mean the caller is not from this area. Hello?? Until he comes forward with his side, we won't know. Or could it be the work of the Rig stooge who has made at least a few posts here about how something is coming that will hurt the people (running) against the current council union

8/24/2012 05:27:00 PM  
Blogger just wondering... said...

He has finally gone over the edge...

Did he really rant, whine and cry because someone thought he was drunk?

As some others have said, maybe it was a legitimate concerned citizen.

Did he really melt down over Julie and charter in front of the television cameras?

I'm embarassed for our city.

8/24/2012 05:53:00 PM  
Blogger feral390 said...

This was posted under another thread a few days ago by who I'm guessing is an out of work car washing ex-planning commish.

deepthroat said...
i have some breaking news and some insight into other bombshells but don't want to give cm4rg a heads up. they deserve to get it the way they will. Stay tuned, all within a week.

8/21/2012 12:34:00 PM

Does Riggys non DUI so called union thug orchestrated conspiracy set-up classify as breaking news or a bombshell?

8/24/2012 06:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Paper Trail said...

Sounds kinda funny that Riggy would be charged for two over-priced sodas from his buddy Gary, and that he would keep such a meaningless receipt.

8/24/2012 06:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Sherlock said...

Are we really supposed to believe that Monahan CHARGED his best bud Jimbo for Diet Cokes? THERE'S the "set-up" my friends! The corpulent one just HAPPENS to have a receipt for soda after being investigated for driving weird. And the guy that gave him said receipt just happens to be a fellow gang member/political ally.

8/24/2012 07:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Mystery Reader said...

According to all the mysteries I have read the real suspect is always a surprise. I would not be surprised, therefore, if this entire event was orchestrated to drum up suspicion about "unions." The Republicans do have a lot of money and maybe they are spending some to create "scenes", even like the Ford Road folks that showed up the other night. One of the residents, Raisley Michael Moe-Bennett, does have a movie company ( Seems like more than just a "'coin'cidence" that we are suddenly having mysterious crime....

8/24/2012 08:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Barry said...

A union cop. What a surprise! These guys disgust me. An embarrassment to our hard working cops who protect us. Hope Riggy presses charges.

8/24/2012 09:11:00 PM  
Blogger just wondering... said...

Barry, I hope the CMPD press charges against that law firm.

8/24/2012 09:36:00 PM  
Anonymous Sherlock said...

The gang must have made Lanzillo days ago and set HIM up. Responsibility is with his lawyer employer NOT any "union."

8/24/2012 10:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Troll Tracker said...

Will the Southern Poverty Law Center investigate the race-obsessed blog of "Barry?"

8/24/2012 10:04:00 PM  
Anonymous Koken Buffoon said...

Can someone explain to me why whenever Righeimer shows passion about something it is labeled a "rant" and he is condemned yet whenever one of the regular whiners shows passion about something they are praised?

8/24/2012 10:53:00 PM  
Anonymous No place in CM said...

So, Mary Ann O'Connell, Mike McNiff, Disgusted Republican, just wondering, feral390, Mystery Reader,

What do you have to say now?

Fired Riverside police Detective Chris Lanzillo, employed by Lackie, Dammeier & McGill as a PI, is following Righeimer and who knows else (Mensinger? Monahan? McCarthy?) around Costa Mesa and calling in plainly false police reports.

Costa Mesa Police Officers Association sends an e-mail to news outlets 4 FOUR minutes before Righeimer's news conference stating that they cut ties with Lackie, Dammeier & McGill due to their agressive tactics.

This stinks, and there should be some serious, criminal repercussions. Someone should go to jail for this.

The Costa Mesa Police Officers Association needs to be 100% up front about their relationship with Lackie, Dammeier & McGill and disclose if they are hiring PIs to try and dig up dirt on candidates and council members.

Right now, it sure looks like we have a huge problem with certain members of our police department. Where there is this much smoke, there is almost always fire.

8/25/2012 12:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Robin said...

Speculating and jumping to conclusions by all sides is pointless. It may be human nature to fill gaps with conjecture, but it just compounds mistakes. We need facts first. They are going to be what they will be. I think Righeimer jumped the gun again, spewing blame before he really knows what's going on. It’s a bad habit with him.

If, as reported, he blamed Julie Folcik for deliberately missing a deadline he’s a skunk. He is doing some thing as bad as what he says was done to him. If there was one shred of truth to that the City would not have ended the ‘missed deadline’ investigation with silence. It’s just as likely she was given bad direction by someone in authority.

On the other hand, I think if this was someone deliberately falsely accusing Righeimer their IQ is in the low double digits, or their cognitive ability was impaired as much as someone stupid enough to drive under the influence (or while texting). I don’t know this person’s motives or condition, but if done with a motive to falsely accuse it was just dumb and wrong. Therefore it makes no sense to me. An investigator, one would hope, is smart enough to know he may be investigated.

Something smells, but I’m not sure exactly what. I look forward to knowing all the facts, no matter what they are. As always, I believe the public deserves to know.

8/25/2012 01:07:00 AM  
Anonymous Tall Paul said...

Wait a minute -- a policeman knocks on your door just after you arrive home... he asks you to step outside and the rest of your family wonders why a policeman is at your home.

If you have no reason to think that you did anything illeagal -- why would you try to seclude your family from what transpired? If you were aware that you committed a crime -- then you might try to shelter your family from the conversation -- if not, then why would you expect the policeman would be there to conduct a soberity test?

I think all these critical comments are obviously sent by people that are playing a political game with the facts.

Just more cm4rg commenters that love Geoff's blog to express their frustration with our elected leaders that are working to make Costa Mesa a better place to live.

8/25/2012 04:31:00 AM  
Anonymous deepthroat said...

feral: this story was not the bombshell they have. Theirs is much more local and shocking, though related to the same association. the association may know, notice how they are backing down hoping we don't bomb? won't work, this story makes them more trigger happy. However, due to this story(gift)I have heard the bombshell release date has been postponed so as not to overwrite this major error by the unions. They have a couple more equivalent stories like this but those will follow the bomb. bombs will never replace the ground war but will sure help the chances for victory.Thus, they will strategically bomb here and in sanitary board I am not fitz, mensy, etc.just a war room guy.

8/25/2012 06:04:00 AM  
Blogger Bruce Krochman said...

Sherlock said...
The gang must have made Lanzillo days ago and set HIM up. Responsibility is with his lawyer employer NOT any "union."

Yes Sherlock, just because the guy works for the law firm the unions use for negotiations and just because he was fired for union activism there is no reason to point to any union culpability whatsoever. Those facts are clearly just coincidental.

8/25/2012 07:31:00 AM  
Blogger feral390 said...

Not only is this a really sleazy tactic it's also really sloppy

1. If you want to burn Riggy, at least wait and do it when he is ACTUALLY DRINKING!

2. Don't give your real name to the police dispatcher.

3. Don't stick around at Riggys house and let witnesses see your car or face.

4. Stop short in front of his car so he rear ends you, and feign injury, now his DUI just got a lot worse.

I would love to see Riggy take a big fall, but please don't use such lame tactics to make him look bad. He can do that just fine without any outside help.

8/25/2012 08:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Mike McNiff said...

No Place in CM - I think this proves nothing yet until we know who was paying this guy. So again, let's wait and see.

I do think it strange that Monahan would charge his good buddy $6 for a couple Diet Cokes that cost him about 10 cents. My friend who owns a local bar would never do that. Riggy even kept the receipt, so was he there on business? Is he going to expense it and make us pay?

There's still a few things in this whole soap opera that don't quite add up.

8/25/2012 09:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Sherlock said...


"Yes Sherlock, just because the guy works for the law firm the unions use for negotiations and just because he was fired for union activism there is no reason to point to any union culpability whatsoever. Those facts are clearly just coincidental."

You miss the point. It's not a "coincidence" issue. If the guy was working for the law firm then the law firm is responsible regardless of whether the client is a union.

If a software company's rep does something screwy, the company is responsible, not the company's client. But you knew all this before you SPUN in favor of people like Mensinger, who you've endorsed.

8/25/2012 10:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Concerned Parent said...

Culpable or not, why did Righeimer allow his children to be part of this drama? Sounds negligent and ill-advised. Or a cynical way to get more mileage out of the incident.

8/25/2012 10:07:00 AM  
Anonymous Barry said...

Really Mike? Really? These guys are criminal. Right out of Lackie's "Playbook". CMPD chose these thugs. If they apologize now maybe they can take 1 seat in Nov. Otherwise they just gave the election to the M's. What a bunch of idiots. I see Mensinger boozing all the time at Skosh's. He was a much easier target.

8/25/2012 10:27:00 AM  
Anonymous not buying it said...

I agree with McNiff.
There's two reasons to keep a receipt for Monahan's over priced Cokes.
One is to be reimbursed by the city tax payers for a "business" expense.
The fact that another city council member would be profiting from that kind of thing is a whole nother question of ethical impropriety that might be examined by the Watchdog (I won't hold my breath).
The other is he was preparing for what he already knew was going to happen and securing his proof that he wasn't drinking alcohol for that purpose.
While some of us might be willing to pay $3 for a glass Diet Coke, 1... we would expect a refill and not have to pay that for a second, and 2... I wouldn't be bothered to keep the receipt unless there was a reason.
Again... it all comes down to a matter of trust, and concerning Righeimer, he had a reason to make sure he kept that receipt and neither one of the possible answers is a good one.

8/25/2012 11:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Sad for us all said...

It really doesn't make any sense. A former cop who now is an investigator at a law firm calls 911 from his cell, tells them his name, full name, drives to and stays at the scene, talks to the police and the wife.

Did this guy want to get caught?

During the press conference on TV Righeimer had no doubts this was a set up by the Unions.

Did Righeimer already know the identity of the caller before the tape was released? How did he know that?
Did they set this up or did police leak him the information?

Is there a political play book too and not just a union play book?

Our great little city is going down the toilet thanks to all sides!

8/25/2012 11:41:00 AM  
Anonymous Disgusted Republican said...

That receipt is a fake. Just given to him to cover his ass. Maybe they set this whole thing up since he so conveniently has this receipt when he probably never paid for those sodas! Maybe he got ithe receipt to use as a tax write off. No matter the circumstances righeimer is still a pig!
To deep throat : Ooohhhhh. You're scaring us! You are just a stupid tool. Being used by just as stupid and immature stupid little boys playing "war games". Why don't you all just grow up and act like mature adults like the rest of us?!

8/25/2012 11:53:00 AM  
Anonymous railroadman, retired said...

Genis didn't want us to become a petri dish on pension reform and approved of the last contract extensions. we would open pandoras box she warned. now look what is happening. we should have never crossed the unions. this is a warmup for their real gameplan. just give them the money and end all this. it is that simple. Genis knows how to end this stuff with just money. vote genis and return to reason with the unions.

8/25/2012 11:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Sad for us all said...

If you read the first accounts of this in the Daily Pilot Righemer never mentions he went to the bar. He says he was at this event on Ford Rd. but leaves out the stopping off at the bar he visited.

There are a lot of red flags. But you have to admit this does now look like some union thug. I hope none of our local police had anything to do with this.

8/25/2012 12:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Cite your sources! said...

Railrodman, Why should you bother with the truth when it's so much easier to make crap up!

Sandy Genis was not on council when the last contract extensions were approved. some of your buddies were.

In Sandy's 8 years council kept a lid on pensions, they were reasonable. She also got the city out of the county investment pool when no one else realized how Bob Citron's investment scheme was about to implode. We need fiscal conservatives with finacial foresight like Sandy now! November may be too late!

8/25/2012 12:37:00 PM  
Anonymous Mom said...

I totally agree with you McNiff, let’s follow the money. Dirty cops turn into dirty PI’s and will work BOTH sides of the coin for some money. This story is a little too perfect for my taste. First, it’s interesting Riggy ordered two diet cokes at 5:50 (don’t most people only order one beverage and get refills?) Then, he proceeded to suck both drinks down in 10 minutes, only to leave the bar with a receipt by 6 pm! In addition, the 911caller does not sound very convincing. Someone who is truly concerned for the safety and wellbeing of others would have more conviction. Stating “well, yeah, I don’t want to be involved” isn’t going to cut it. The dispatcher told the caller he did not have to follow the vehicle yet, he continues to the residence, sits in front of the house and speaks directly to the wife. Yep, sounds like a set up all right, a set up orchestrated by Righeimer himself! Conveniently, Riggy calls a press conference, does a decent job faking some emotion, and voila! you’ve got yourself a prime time news story blaming the unions. Whatever. In every election, it’s inevitable that BOTH sides resort to tactics that suck.

8/25/2012 12:48:00 PM  
Anonymous speaking up anonymously said...

This whole incident is a tempest in a teapot. It doesn't change any of the real issues at stake in this election.

My friends and I are tired of the drama, fake crisises and tension. We are sick and tired of how some men on the city council try to micromanage everything, including which sports teams get the best positions to raise money and some get squeezed out. We are sick of the ways these guys try to shut out and shut down dissenting voices. Not just what you see at council meetings but they try to control private citizens and threaten them with losing places on comittees or charity boards.

I know 5 people who have been threatened or yelled at by Jim or Steve and heard of lots of others. I heard another about Jim close to unhinged crazy behavior just recently yelling at someone. This happens way too much. I know good people got squeezed out of the cultural arts committee for goodness sake. The investment oversight committee is hand picked now to do Lord knows what. I know JR yelled at the equestrians at the fairgrounds and threatened that if they joined Sandy Genis “Fairgrounds Preservation Society” and didn’t join his fake “Save the fair” group he would blow up the deal and they wouldn’t have any stables left to go to. Steve yelled at a sports mom because she had different ideas on who should get to do fundraising than he did. The council men are nuts if they think no one hates what control freaks they are. We want costa mesa to get back to normal. I’ve held this in for a long time. Thanks for letting me speak here. Of course I’m no going to use my real name because people are afraid of consequences and that’s another thing I’m sick of.

I can guarantee JR will milk this little incident past it's shelf life. He CRAVES attention. I don't care who did what, I just want to throw the bums out and get some reasonable people on council and hang out with my kids, go to work, have a peaceful life and not worry what the council is going to do next or that my car is going to get broken into again because grandstanding politicians won’t hire enough cops. WE DIDN’T VOTE TO BE SOME PETRI DISH EXPERIMENT, JIM AND STEVE AND ERIC AND GARY! WE WANT OUR CITY BACK!

8/25/2012 01:32:00 PM  
Blogger Bruce Krochman said...

So anonymous Sherlock would have us believe that a Law Firm did this without any direction from a client (union) or the PI did this entirely on his own without a client (union). What is REALLY hard to believe about either of those scenarios is that Law Firms and PI bill by the job and/or hour. They are not, in and of themselves, ideologically driven to do anything. Everything they do is billed for or designed for marketing purposes. Which category would this fall under? Yes, billing, flat out.

My endorsement of Mensinger is a matter of public record, as is my endorsement on Mansoor, Monahan and McCarthy. I have never been shy about who I endorse and why. I am sorry to say that you don't have the same confidence in your political affiliations; posting behind a "Nom de Clavier", as it were.

8/25/2012 01:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Mary Ann O'Connell said...

To no place in CM

Until this is all sorted out, I will stand with my opinion. Until there is proof as to who the man was working for and the motivations, I will stand. No one's explanations make any sense yet.

8/25/2012 04:36:00 PM  
Anonymous Terry Koken said...

Thirty-three comments, and they all miss the real point, which is


This, in itself, should be enough to get him dismissed from Council. As some of us may remember, I pointed out that he was possibly suffering from a beer deficiency and that this might be the cause of his rectality. In this incident, we have only confirmation of my conjecture.

I even proffered a remedy for this deficiency, which the MPT accepted. I do not know whether or not he consumed the contents of the flask, but:


I believe the technical term for one who does is "coke-sucker".

Seriously, Jim, change your ways. That stuff'll kill you.

8/25/2012 06:10:00 PM  
Anonymous Sherlock said...

Krochman (a moi):

"..posting behind a nom de clavier."

Far superior to your posting behind a "nom de pauvre con."

"Sherlock would have us believe that a Law Firm did this without any direction from a client (union) or the PI did this entirely on his own without a client (union)."

I would have the reader believe that, contrary to your spin parroting Righeimer, there is still no evidence that the law firm or the PI did anything wrong. And, if it turns out that they did do something wrong, there is still no evidence that the acts were done with the knowledge or consent of any client like the members of the police association.

Unfortunately, lawyers and PIs have been known to bend the law to get a certain result. Just like how a software company might leave a glitch in the code that the client never learns about.

I guess we're disappointed that you don't use the great intellect that admittedly supports giants like Mansoor, Monahan, McCarthy and Mensinger to help figure out:

1) The suspect diet coke receipt timeline;
2) Just how Righeimer aka Nostradamas knew moments after the stop exactly who was involved.

Maybe your heroes knew about Lanzillo long before the incident, had Riggy play drunk, and set this entire thing up to bolster their losing campaigns.

Oh, and when you endorsed Mensinger, did you also endorse his altercations with an airport baggage clerk and a school teacher?

Espece d'idiot!

8/25/2012 08:02:00 PM  
Anonymous setup setup said...

This is all a little too convenient.... Righeimer just happens to leave a bar, just happens to keep his diet coke receipt (nobody does that), just happens to be followed, the caller (alleged thug-for-hire) happens to give his full name, he just happens to have been previously associated with the law firm used by the police among other firms, and his name happens to be on said firm's website...

Honestly, has anyone considered that Righeimer himself or friends hired this guy. Everything is a little too perfect... like a setup setup...

8/25/2012 08:02:00 PM  
Anonymous Alice said...

The stunning irrationality of the comments on this page would be comedic if it wasn't so damn scary.

8/25/2012 10:05:00 PM  
Blogger feral390 said...

Does anyone remember a couple of years ago when our city was normal?

8/26/2012 06:08:00 AM  
Anonymous railroadman, retired said...

To "cite your sources": above is the link to my sources. The Register newspaper article on the contract extensions with "former Mayor Sandy Genis" supporting the contracts and not wanting to be a petri dish for pension reform.
So, back at ya. I never said Genis was on council then , only that she supported the decision. There is proof. HAHA. we have many Genis quotes on this, need more? u are opening pandoras box by asking though! LOL

8/26/2012 07:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Thoroughly Disgusted Republican said...

So what are the 4 council union boys doing behind our backs to our city while they distract us with this convenient "setup"? That's where our real concern and focus should be.
The more I read the more I think this was orchestrated by them - the timing of the "p"rig's rant about this specific law firm on Tuesday and voila the next day this happens, the convenient, but unusual, receipt, skoshface's video camera actually working to capture the "suspect's" car in his parking lot, the "p"rig allowing his kids to witness this dog and pony show, on and on....who could be so stupid as to set this thing up knowing it would come back on them? The CMPD is not, knowing they'd be crucified by the council union. But the "p"rig has the money and the motive to "setup" himself. And with this idiot "deepthroat" (just a war room boy-oh brother how immature can they get?!) loose cannon out there making threats, these boys will just end up destroying themselves ( and the city if we don't get them off the dias). IT'S NOT WORKING, LIITLE BOYS! GROW UP. Apparently you all are a lot stupider than we've given you credit for! NO ON V; NO 3Ms!! I can't wait to get this city back to reason and working together again. THESE 4 DIVAS ARE KILLING COSTA MESA. They are an embarrassment to themselves and a major liability to our city! Costa Mesa deserves way better than these self absorbed, self serving, immature boys running the show anyway they want to and feel like. (Just like how the "p"rig claims CALpers is run, and just like he said to Wendy on the dias " I can talk about anything I want to up here"). I can only hope when he's outnumbered by reason on the dias, he'll pick up his marbles and go home, crying "ME, ME, ME" all the way!!

8/26/2012 11:45:00 AM  

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