On September 11, 2019 we sent the following letter to the Editor of the Mariposa Gazette concerning the Jerry Cox scandal, which keeps upchucking one self-serving, incompetent, wrongheaded, comic character after another…
On September 4, 2019 Supervisor Marshal Long, Host of Mariposa County Updates, told viewers “…there is nothing sealed. All of the information about what has been going on with Bison Creek Ranch LLC (Jerry Cox) can be obtained through Mariposa County records at the Building Department, Health Department, Planning Department – all those records are available – also all those records and more are available through the Mariposa Superior Court, even though people have talked about it that the records are sealed that is nowhere near the truth, none of this has been sealed. So if you are really interested in knowing the truth those records are available.”
Except, executed on October 17, 2017, Randolf Krbechek, in County of Mariposa vs. JDC Land Company LLC, Special Interrogatives, asked the County to “Identify by date, case number and issuing court all warrants authorizing you to inspect the subject property.”
Steven Dahlem, Mariposa County Counsel and Matthew R. Silver from Silver & Wright LLC, in the November 20, 2017 County’s Responses, asserted that, “The County objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that the requested documents are sealed pursuant to Cal. Rules of Court 2.550 and 2.551 and are not subject to discovery.”
The National Coalition for Men sent letters and Freedom of Information Requests. We received none of the information requested, including asking for a copy of a sealed search warrant affidavit, which County Attorney Dulham denied as “re-litigation,” implying the Court’s blessing.
Supervisor Long not only misrepresented facts – if not lied – he failed to mention the hidden criminal warrant. Which, was based on false accusations by one completely discredited Ashley Harris against an innocent, hardworking, much maligned, maliciously accused and wrongly incarcerated Bison Creek Ranch owner Jerry Cox.
The very same criminal warrant used to send armed storm troopers onto Bison Creek Ranch for a 101 alleged, highly suspect and fabricated, civil code violations.
The sealed warrant has been referred to as a Smoking Gun. Now, thanks to Supervisor Long, most aptly, THE Silver Bullet…
Since Mr. Long, a high ranking elected County official, publicly asserted nothing is sealed, might it be more difficult for the County to keep the secret (“sealed”) search warrant concealed from public view? Don’t you think? Apparently, Supervisor Long didn’t.
Regardless, if Mr. Long was telling the truth to the county and his constituents, then Mr. Dahlem might have lied when he represented that the warrants were sealed. And, if the warrants are not sealed as Mr. Long represented, they should be produced forthwith to Mr. Cox, his representatives and the good citizens of Mariposa County.
Worse, maybe there’s no warrant to produce? Maybe the storm trooper search was warrant-less? Maybe…
Regardless, in our opinion, maladministration rules.
President, National Coalition For Men (NCFM)
Our letter, which was published September 19, 2019, apparently caused the Gazette to investigate further since on September 12 came the article below. We are very thankful the Gazette investigated further and uncovered even more apparent misbehavior… the Cox scandal is one that just keeps on giving, unfortunately to the detriment of the good citizens of Mariposa County.
Long contradicts county court records
September 12, 2019
By GREG LITTLE Editor
Despite a statement in a video by a Mariposa County supervisor, it appears the county itself has admitted there are sealed documents in the Jerry Cox case.
The Cox case has been the center of controversy for more than two years. The case centers around code violations at Cox’s 437 acre ranch in Mariposa County. Cox was found to be in violations of 101 building codes at his ranch.
The case, in Mariposa County Superior Court, has been ongoing since Judge Dana Walton ordered it into receivership. When that happened, the property was ordered seized by the receiver. Mark Adams of California Receivership Group was appointed as the receiver in the case.
Receivership cases in California generally involve property like apartment complexes or other places where revenue can be generated while it is in receivership. In this case, the ranch was abandoned for over a year with the only people present being security guards hired by the receiver.
Late last week, Mariposa County Supervisor Marshall Long posted a social media video and referred to sealed documents in the case. Since the case broke, it has been reported there are sealed documents in the matter. Those documents apparently are related to the search warrants generated when Cox’s property was seized.
In the video, Long said he could not discuss the case because the county is now involved in a federal lawsuit filed by Cox last week. That lawsuit seeks at least $150 million in damages. Part of the lawsuit requests sealed documents be released by the court.
Even though he said he could not discuss the case, during his “Mariposa County Update” video last week, Long said, “There is nothing sealed.”
He further stated information about sealed documents is “nowhere near the truth … nothing is sealed.”
He said all of the information is available in records housed by the planning, health and building departments of the county as well as the Mariposa County Superior Court.
But documentation from 2017 in the case seems to indicate otherwise.
A document filed by attorney Randolf Krbechek, who represented Cox at the time, requested various information from the county. The requests were in the form of “special interrogatories” from the attorney. There was a laundry list of 159 requests from the attorney.
At least two of those requests for information seem relevant to the recent comments made by Long.
They are request “7” and “8” in the documents filed with the court. They read:
- Identify by date, case number, and issuing court all warrants authorizing YOU to inspect the SUBJECT PROPERTY.
- Identify by date, case number, and issuing court all warrants authorizing YOU to search the SUBJECT PROPERTY.
In the response from the county, it states: “The county objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that the requested documents are sealed pursuant to California Rules of Court Rules 2.550 and 2.551 and are not subject to discovery. The county objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that it impermissibly seeks information and documents protected by the official information in Evidence Code section 1040. The county objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that it seeks information not relevant to the subject matter of this action and not reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.”
The second response reads: “The County objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that it is overbroad in both time and scope. The County objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that it impermissibly seeks information and documents protected by the official information privilege in Evidence Code section 1040. The County objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that requested documents are sealed pursuant to California Rules of Court Rules 2.550 and 2.551 and are not subject to discovery. The County objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that it seeks information not relevant to the subject matter of this action and not reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.”
The fact those statements came from the county’s own attorneys would indicate there are, in fact, sealed documents in the case.
Exactly what the documents are remain unknown, though there is some speculation they are documents related to the search warrants which were authorized in the receivership case.
One interesting aspect of “Mariposa County Update” is the fact it is not funded by taxpayer money. For a time, the video update was funded, however, that changed last year when the board of supervisors suspended funding for the program.
Rene LaRoche, clerk of the board, said on Monday the funding for the video was nixed by the board because the producers of the show could not provide closed captioning, which is required on government-funded programs. She did not know who is now funding the program, though it does still use the term “Mariposa County” in the title.
In a related matter, on Tuesday, the board of supervisors authorized hiring the same law firm, Silver & Wright, to represent the county in the federal case. That firm has been and continues to represent the county in the receivership case.
The agreement states the fee for attorneys will be $250 per hour while fees for paralegals and clerks is $120 per hour. There are also fees included for photocopies, postage, research, courier and messenger services and automobile mileage reimbursement.
It also states there will be a 3 percent increase in fees on Jan. 1 of each year “to offset rising costs.”