Los Angeles City Hall politics revealed from an insider's point of view.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Los Angeles Deputy DAs Lash Out At Union

The fur's flying over at the Griffith Park Wayist, a blog associated with environmental issues but increasingly serving the political apetites of Los Angeles voters.

For the second time in as many days the GPW's daily "Another Terrace Morning" (edited by the eponymous 'Mulholland Terrace') has featured a heated exchange between deputy district attorneys at Steve Cooley's office, and the union that claims to represent them. 

Of course, Steve Cooley is currently running for Attorney General and will face San Francisco DA Kamala Harris in November's general election. Cooley is maintaining his lead in the polls and it that might explain why the left leaning 'Mulholland Terrace' thought a few lines about Cooley being 'anti union' might stir the party faithful to rally around Kamala Harris.

Harris, a liberal democrat, has had a few setbacks recently with reports of her Missing Millions of Federal Dollars, allegations of Hypocrisy over Campaign Donations, and having the lowest conviction rate of any California DA's Office. MT probably didn't think he'd get the reaction from so many deputy DAs who, it seems, do not believe this union is representative of their concerns.

Edited highlights of some of the comments posted at the Griffith Park Wayist include:

12.  September 16, 2010 1:39 PM

"As you know only too well, there really is no "DA's Union" just a bunch of washed-up misfits who don't like the fact that they cannot have an assignment next door to their home…" 

"… when everyone found out about Ipsen being a character witness for a convicted sex offender, most "Union" members resigned."

15.  September 16, 2010 6:49 PM

"1:39 p.m., must be a bureacrat, who too easily dismisses legitimate complaints, because the number is not large enough. The others must have been beaten into submission."

16.  September 16, 2010 6:49 PM

"Hey 6:49pm, you can call 1:39pm a bureaucrat all you like, but you cannot deny the truth about the so-called "DA's Union. It was a disaster, a flop of biblical proportions, and all because it was led by a loser who thinks it's OK to have a convicted sex offender in his home, it's OK to lend the sex offender the keys to his car, it's OK for a prosecutor to become a defense witness and call a convicted sex offender "one of my closest friends" when his closest friend is on trial for his third sex offense. "

"Ipsen and his misfits think they're something special. They're not. They've screwed up just about everything they promised to fix and that's why nobody at the DA's Office wants anything to do with them."

"If 1,000 lawyers really felt there was a problem with the way the DA's Office was run, you would hear it loud and clear - the ACLU would be all over it like a cheap suit. But you don't hear anything like that. You just get Ipsen and his miserable misfits complaining that they have to drive too far to their courthouse. Wah Wah Wah. Get a life."

1. September 18, 2010 11:48 PM

"MT, you are being used by Ipsen, just like he used and abused the trust of so many at the DA's Office who did not realize that all he was doing was promoting his own agenda at their expense."

"Ipsen abused his position of trust to form a union that had only two purposes; a platform to attack Cooley in a futile effort to make himself look like a viable candidate in his run for DA, and when that failed, to attack Cooley at every opportunity as a sore loser."

"The vast majority of deputies now realize that better pay, easy promotion and assignment preference are unrealistic and it was deceptive and dishonest to promise those things amid an economic climate where in the private sector, law firms are firing and not hiring. 

In the public sector, its not much better. We've seen the City Attorney's office "let go" of a lot of good people, and also be forced take a 10% pay cut through enforced furloughs. 

That has not happened at the DA's Office, and that's because of Cooley's relationship with the Board of Supervisors. But Seligman is still selling false hopes of "pay parity" with Orange County or Santa Cruz. Bullshit!"

"Ipsen and the union are basically nothing more than a bunch of self-serving whiners who don't like the fact that they have a long drive to work. They don't like their assignments because they see them as either too far or simply beneath them. They see themselves as better than everyone else in the office, instead of being part of a team that does the job you pay us to do."

2. September 19, 2010 1:19 AM

"In his very slanted defense of Cooley and ad hominem personal attacks on Ipsen, previous commenter lets drop that "Cooley has selected his successor." WAIT, isn't the DA at least NOMINALLY "elected?""

3. September 19, 2010 9:32 AM

"The response belies a lack of knowledge of procedure or a disingenuous attempt to mislead readers. "

" ... as to Cooley's choice of successor, yes, the DA is an elected position. However where the elected DA leaves office before the end of his term, the Board of Supervisors appoints an interim DA."

"What's really telling about the response, is the lack of denial as to the union of 8 being a bunch of whining cry babies who think they are so special that they shouldn't have to drive so far to assignments that aren't very interesting to them. That's at the core of what's wrong with this union. It seems to only exist for the benefit of these malcontents, and not for the 1,000 deputies they claim to represent."

4. September 19, 2010 11:14 AM

"It's amusing that while the DA's union is being dismissed as merely a group of 8 malcontents, Cooley the Compelled felt "compelled" enough to warn Rob Dver not to join…"

5. September 19, 2010 2:37 PM

"You find it 'amusing' that poor Rob Dver was sucked into Ipsen's web of deceit and fabrication? It's not funny."

"Rob is a decent person who thought he could be a calming influence on Ipsen. Had Rob known all about Ipsen I think he would have realized that someone like Ipsen cannot be trusted." 

"Dver may not have know that the Supreme Court described Ipsen as having 'manipulated the evidence "intentionally and without good-faith justification."' That was in 2005 after a death penalty case that Ipsen tried was overturned because of what many consider prosecutorial misconduct by Ipsen. Unfortunately, Dver was manipulated just as the evidence in Ipsen's overturned death penalty case."

6. September 19, 2010 3:13 PM

"2:37pm has it right. This so-called "union" doesn't have anyone on it who doesn't have some personal gripe with their assignment. They are pathetic whiners who think they're something sooooo special, but they're not."

"I'm glad someone has had the guts to stand up to the stream of negative misinformation that this union of misfits keeps on putting out."

7. September 19, 2010 4:16 PM

"Cooley sucks. Kamala Harris, go go, go. Rid California of ugly people."

8. September 19, 2010 4:35 PM

"I agree with 2:37 and 3:13 - nobody voted for Hyatt Seligman. Who the fuck is he to claim to represent anyone but his own self interest. I've been a deputy da for 5 years and I'm glad to work for this office even if we don't make as much money as Orange County or Santa Bumfuck or wherever. That's not why we do this job. If we wanted to make 'big money' we could all become defense attorneys, but we don't."

"There were a few decent people in the union before Ipsen turned it into his personal campaign machine"

"Now all that's left are a bunch of misfits, failure and malcontents who think they're going to throw us under the bus to advance themselves."

"I hope that when the new guy gets in, he fires them all and takes it to court. He'll win. Nobody has any sympathy for these people who complain about the job the rest of us gladly do. I drive 35 miles to work every day, and sure it would be nice to be closer to home, but I'm not complaining. That goes with the territory we have to cover. Good luck to whoever started this discussion, it's time these things were said."

9. September 19, 2010 5:45 PM

"And another thing, here's the 411 on Ipsen's performance as a deputy DA:

Violating Due Process no wonder he made such a mess of his union."

The comments can be read in their entirety by using the following links:


Anonymous said...

Nasty, nasty, nasty. It seems that everyone connected with this bizarre union has some nasty baggage. Seligman, who it seems was simply "appointed" by the outgoing Ipsen without asking the DAs if they wanted him, was once involved in a disgusting lawsuit about his gardener showing a porno tape to Seligman's 7 year old daughter. The porno tape was of Seligman and his wife. Yuck! Where do they find these people?

See http://articles.latimes.com/1993-06-27/local/me-7734_1_child-molestation

Anonymous said...

It's so surprise that the DAs union is held in such low regard. Bad enough that Steve Ipsen has such poor judgment when it comes to picking his closest friends, but now it seems that the guy Ipsen appointed as his replacement was a sex weirdo himself - that LA Times story about his sex tape is just too much. No wonder nobody wants to have anything to do with these people.