Local business owner Jennifer Nutting is running to replace ousted El Dorado County Supervisor Ray Nutting, her husband.

JOSÉ LUIS VILLEGAS — jvillegas@sacbee.com
Story
There are some people who will vote for Jennifer Nutting to replace her husband on the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors because they feel it rights a wrong.

Ray Nutting was removed from office earlier this summer after a politically motivated corruption trial that resulted in acquittal of felony charges and conviction of misdemeanors committed because, in the chaotic hours before he turned himself in to the authorities, he wrongly borrowed money for bail from people with business before the county.

After the trial, his fellow supervisors asked a judge to remove Nutting.

A lot of people, including many of his constituents, think Ray Nutting was wronged and that he was unjustly removed from his elected position. Having his wife serve out his term would serve some measure of cosmic justice.

But that’s not why we are endorsing Jennifer Nutting in the special election for District 2 on Sept. 9. It is because she is the best of the three women and three men running for the position.

Believe us, we were just as surprised by this conclusion as anyone.

From the outside, her candidacy seems a joke. It’s true that political spouses often get the bug for public office after years of proximity and interest. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Lois Capps, Doris Matsui and Mary Bono Mack are just a few of the women who followed their husbands into office and did fine.

But this soon after her husband had been removed? It seemed merely a ploy to get back at the people who wronged her husband: the man who filed the charges, El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson, and the man who turned him in for bad paperwork, county Auditor-Controller Joe Harn.

But Jennifer Nutting is no wilting lily who will be a mouthpiece for her husband. A local native, she’s a business owner and mom, active in the community and has a sharp command of the issues facing county government, probably from sitting through years of supervisor meetings. She’s well-versed in the mechanics of the county and has a reasonable stance on growth: moderate, with jobs before houses.

Many folks have told us that the next board (there are two open seats that will be filled in November) needs strong leadership to overcome the infighting among electeds that was the downfall of Ray Nutting and has roiled local leadership. There are two strong women in this race: Nutting and Claire McNeal.

But McNeal doesn’t seem likely to help heal the rifts in the county. A county government neophyte, she has a background in party politics as a member of the El Dorado County Republican Central Committee. The last thing the Board of Supervisors needs is the type of partisanship that has frozen Congress.

But more important than her lack of knowledge is her demeanor. When communicating with a representative of The Bee’s editorial board, McNeal was unnecessarily combative and uncivil. That’s not just unwise, it indicates a lack of judgment you don’t want to see in a public official.

Jennifer Nutting might ride a wave of voter revenge to victory, but in this case, she deserves it.

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Nutting appealing conviction, removal from office

Nutting appealing convictionFormer El Dorado County supervisor Ray Nutting is appealing his recent misdemeanor convictions and a judge’s decision to remove him from office because of them, while his wife, Jennifer, is one of six candidates running for his old seat in a special election.

“For me to be charged with these malicious prosecutions and not challenge them is unconscionable,” Nutting said of his decision to appeal.vern pierson SCANDAL

Nutting, who lives in Somerset, initially faced four felony charges filed by El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson. After a lengthy trial, a Placerville jury in May found Nutting not guilty on three felonies, including charges of filing false documents, perjury and approving conflict-of-interest contracts, and deadlocked on the fourth, resulting in no conviction.

But Nutting was also charged with six misdemeanors and convicted for receiving “illegal, undocumented loans” from two county employees and Douglas Veerkamp, a construction contractor who does business with El Dorado County. Nutting used the money to post bail after he was ordered to surrender on the felony charges.

Nutting and his attorney, David Weiner, argued in court that the money was not loaned, but offered freely by friends so Nutting could post bail under a time of duress. They asked to have that distinction included in jury instructions at trial but the request was denied.

“These were friends. Everybody got their money right back except for (one woman) who put it up for bail. She voluntarily did it, and she got it back from the court. All the others got it back within hours,” Weiner said. “We were denied an instruction as to defining bail, which is what this was, and the jurors we interviewed said if they had that information the result could have been different.”

Nutting’s appeal of the six misdemeanor convictions was filed in California’s Third District Court of Appeals. A second appeal will challenge visiting Superior Court Judge Tim Buckley’s decision in early June to order Nutting out of office because of the convictions.

“We think a felony conviction removes someone, vacates an office. Misdemeanors, generally not, unless there’s something unusual, and it would have to involve some official duty,” Weiner said. “Even if the convictions stand, we think his position should not have been vacated because there was nothing he did that was a violation of his official duties.”

Buckley determined Nutting’s actions did constitute official misconduct and said they raised concerns about dual-allegiance and conflicts of interest, calling it inappropriate for a supervisor to solicit money from someone who contracts with the county.

Buckley’s decision has ramifications statewide, according to Weiner. “Anyone who is an elected official now is going to be under the thumb of district attorneys. They better stay close with the (district attorneys) and do what they want done, otherwise they’re in trouble quick. If they interpret violation of official duties that broadly, we think it will be of interest to elected officials statewide,” he said.

With Nutting removed from office, El Dorado County’s four remaining supervisors authorized a Sept. 9 special election for voters in District 2 to elect a new representative. Six candidates have taken early steps to run for the seat, including Nutting’s wife, Jennifer Nutting. Five other potential candidates are Shiva Frentzen, Claire McNeal, Dave Pratt, Janet Saitman and George Wesley Turnboo.

The District 2 supervisor represents southwest El Dorado County, including parts of Cameron Park, Shingle Springs and El Dorado Hills.

Voters in District 4 and in District 5 will elect new supervisors in November’s general election.

County officials considered consolidating the special election with the general election, but could not because of a provision in the county charter that requires a special election within 90 to 120 days of a declared vacancy. Recorder-Clerk Bill Schultz estimated the special election will cost between $80,000 and $100,000.

InEDC: Nutting Trial, at what cost?

ImageNutting Trial, at what cost?

Original Story: http://inedc.com/1-8686

As a former California Peace Officer, it was painful to watch as the Defense Counsel repeatedly punched holes in the Prosecution’s Case. Is this nothing more than a Political Witch Hunt to get rid of a perceived Political Enemy? How much of our Tax Payer Money did the District Attorney spend to put on this Dog and Pony show?

Nom de Plume | 2014-05-17

 NUTTING NOT GUILTY ON MAJORITY OF FELONY CHARGES,

 

HE WILL REMAIN A COUNTY SUPERVISOR

 

Main Court House

 Placerville, Ca

 05/14/2014

 

In trying to make sense of the recent Criminal Trial, “The People of California Vs. Raymond James Nutting”, I’ve been following the above events as they’ve unfolded since last year (2013).  It started when El Dorado County Auditor-Controller “Joe Harn” implied on local television that County Supervisor “Ray Nutting” was using Public Monies to clean up his own back yard (personal ranch).  Joe’s remarks eventually led to the above stated Trial.  As described in today’s press, Ray was found NOT GUILTY of three (3) out of four (4) of the original Felony Charges brought against him, by the current District Attorney “Vern Pierson”.  The fourth (4) charge, the Jury could not decide on (hung 5 to 7). However he was found guilty on six (6) misdemeanor charges.  These lesser charges were added after his arrest and are unrelated to his official duties.  It should be noted that these extra charges would not have occurred had Ray not tried to raise bail on the felony charges.  Both Ray and the District Attorney’s Office cannot comment on the case results because of a gag order by the sitting Judge, “Timothy Buckley”, pending further action by District Attorney “Vern Pierson“. 

 I found the “D.A.’s case very weak. To say the least, if Assistant District Attorney, “Clinchard” and Defense Counsel “Weiner” were prize Fighters in a boxing match, “Clinchard was clearly out classed by “Weiner”.  As a former California Peace Officer, it was painful to watch as the Defense Counsel repeatedly punched holes in the Prosecution’s Case. 

As this Trial proceeded, I kept asking myself as to why the D.A. would push for a Trial on such a weak case?  Although the prosecution brought countless documents (Maps, Witnesses, Invoices, Contracts) to try and convince the Jury of “Nutting’s” guilt, there was no discernible “Smoking Gun” produced by the D.A. that pointed to Guilt in our form of justice, a jury trial.

The Jury was comprised of five (5) men and seven (7) women.  For the most part they came from different walks of life.  Mothers, Fathers, Grandparents, some single, some married, and some divorced.  People who pay their Taxes, raise their children, go to church. Who basically try to make ends meet and get along in life as best they can.  Twelve (12) separate individuals, with different problems, some healthy, some not so healthy, some retired, some blue collar and some not.  Twelve (12) American citizens, and all residents of El Dorado County.  In short, people just like you and me, who sat in Judgment of “Raymond James Nutting”.

I look at Ray the man:  He has been a hard worker all his life; is married, loves his wife and kids; is Religious; pays his Debts; keeps his word; and helps his Neighbors.  He’s been elected four (4) times as a Supervisor by the populace of District five (5) in El Dorado County and is well into his fourth (4th) term.  His family is a long time cattle and timber ranchers in the County.  He went to one of the local colleges; graduated with a degree in Criminal Science; and obtained a California Teaching Certificate.  A very respected Citizen of the County, obviously very popular and well liked.  Elected as one of the County’s Public Guardians, the man doesn’t fit the profile of a criminal. The only thing I can come up with is that he’s a threat to those that seek to control the County’s Political Picture.  Some would say that Politics is a dangerous game, particularly for those who vote their conscious, and want to change things for the betterment of the people they represent.  Others would say that the love of money and greed are the root of evil.  In Ray’s case he certainly doesn’t display a great amount of wealth.  He and his wife don’t drive fancy cars, unless you want to call his sub-compact and an old beat up truck as displays of wealth.  I think his salary as a Supervisor is about $70,000 and his wife cuts and sets hair in her Beauty Salon in Pollock Pines. 

As one of the Guardians of the County’s Finances, it’s been rumored that Ray has remarked on the amounts of Salary that the Auditor-Controller and the District Attorney receive. Combined they get in excess of $400,000 a year.  The Attorney General of the California has a reported Salary of about $160,000.  What does the District Attorney Vern Pierson and the Auditor-Controller Joe Harn do to warrant such large salaries as Public Servants?  Could it be that Ray has raised a very pointed financial question?  Could this be the real reason?  Is this nothing more than a Political Witch Hunt to get rid of a perceived Political Enemy?  How much of our Tax Payer Money did the District Attorney spend to put on this Dog and Pony show?  If you’re curious as to the amount, then write this paper.  Let’s find out, with a signed petition, by using the “FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT”.  Then ask yourself, DO WE WANT THESE PEOPLE HAVING ACCESS TO OUR TAX DOLLARS?!?!

In closing I offer this quote,

“YOU CAN FOOL ALL THE PEOPLE SOME OF THE TIME,  SOME OF THE PEOPLE ALL OF THE TIME, BUT YOU CAN’T FOOL ALL OF THE PEOPLE ALL OF THE TIME” (attributed to Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of The United States 09/02/1858)

 

Nom de Plume

– See more at: http://inedc.com/1-8686#sthash.KXxnBs7y.dpuf

Vern Pierson is up there with Hitler and Stalin El Dorado County DA Vern Pierson Loses Bad! Nutting Runs the Not Guilty Table on Him – Political Opinion

– See more at: http://inedc.com/1-8677#sthash.IDNOqMTa.dpuf

Editorial: Political prosecution in El Dorado County

sac beeBy the Editorial Board

Published: Friday, May. 9, 2014 – 12:00 am
Last Modified: Friday, May. 9, 2014 – 12:10 am

What does a political prosecution look like? Depending on your perspective, it might look like a peace protester thrown in jail for marching in the street. Or an evangelical Christian convicted of trespassing at an abortion clinic. Even the impeachment of a president for lying about cheating on his wife.

Ray Nutting

Ray Nutting

It also could look like Ray Nutting. Though the conservative four-term El Dorado County supervisor and timber rancher probably wouldn’t enjoy the comparison, he is on trial for transgressions so common among elected officials that they are usually dispatched with a slap on the wrist and a fine.

DA Vern PiersonHis real crime appears to be occupying the wrong side of a political divide in this county – one that has deepened with the overzealous and politically motivated prosecution by District Attorney Vern Pierson. The three-week trial has resulted in untold costs to the defendant – whose political career has been injured, perhaps fatally – the county, the jurors, the taxpayers and even the DA’s own credibility. No one is going to win here, no matter the ultimate verdict.

Nutting was arrested a year ago and charged with felonies for not reporting income from a federal grant program for brush clearing on his property and conflicts of interest by voting on contracts on which he had an interest. The DA added misdemeanor charges shortly after Nutting’s arrest for improperly requesting bail money from county employees and a county contractor.

Clearly, Nutting is guilty of bad paperwork. He admitted as much during several hours of testimony this week in which he outlined numerous errors he made while filling out the complicated financial disclosure forms. He makes a credible case that these were “honest” mistakes. This doesn’t excuse him of anything, but even with his bad judgment thrown in, the alleged misdeeds don’t rise to the level of a three-week trial and possibility of jail time.

Vern Pierson protest

Vern Pierson protest

For comparative purposes, consider that Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson was fined $1,000 earlier this year by the Fair Political Practices Commission for failing to report travel expenses, and fined $37,500 in 2012 for not reporting thousands of dollars in donations he sought on behalf of nonprofits. Those fines were appropriate for their individual severity.

Elected officials failing to properly fill out their disclosure forms is quite usual. Pierson, too, appears to have fumbled his financial reporting documents. He received a warning letter from the FPPC that said he violated campaign disclosure provisions, the Mountain Democrat reported in April.

If the DA’s real mission with this prosecution is exposing Nutting as a “hypocrite” – as he put it in court documents – for taking federal funds while railing about the federal government to his tea party supporters, it’s fair to say he’s already won. But being a hypocrite isn’t a crime.

The testimony in the trial is over and the case is now being deliberated by the jury. One would hope the jurors see through the political fog emanating from this case and return a verdict commensurate with the transgression.

http://www.sacbee.com/2014/05/09/6390442/editorial-political-prosecution.html

 

Placerville DA Vern Pierson’s assistant outed as anonymous shill blogger “Justice Insider” ?

Vern Pierson corrupt

Vern Pierson corrupt

**UPDATE DA Vern Pierson and Bill Clark hold the position Dennis Justin was not at the crime scene as debunked in this new June 04, 2013 deposition** See new video of Nevada Bounty Hunter / Bail bondsman Dennis Justin explain how he entered Ty Robben’s home, watched Robben get tased and note there was no fight as they once said.

Notice Mr. Justin make jokes about tasering Robben and then make a wild false statement under the penalty of perjury that SLTPD was/is  “investigating” Robben for alleged threats to California Governor Jerry Brown! Mr. Justin then refers to Jerry Brown as a piece of ____.  I called SLTPD and spoke to a detective who’s name I should list, but I’ll keep in confidential and assured me SLTPD is not “investigating” me (Robben) and they would not be the agency who would investigate threats to the Governor. For the record, I don’t follow Jerry Brown, blog about Mr. Brown or have any negative feelings toward the California Governor. See that new story here: https://nevadastatepersonnelwatch.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/placerville-da-vern-piersons-assistant-outed-as-anonymous-shill-blogger-justice-insider/

DA Vern Pierson’s assistant Bill Clark outed as anonymous Mt. Democrat bully/ DA shill blogger “Justice Insider”. 

Interesting comments on the flurry of Vern Pierson news with the DA protests and Ray Nutting corruption all coming at the same time.  Looks like the DA office tried some anonymous shill blogging to control the spin and it backfired as well.

By the way, this was posted on a recent Sac Bee story. The “Justice Insider” part ties into the Mt. Democrat stories on my protest and Ray Nutting where over 100 comments were posted in one day.  See that here: http://www.mtdemocrat.com/news/supervisor-nutting-arrested/

Ty Robben is not the blogger who said this:

” Sis says that Nutting is simply following in the footsteps of his fellow felon, former Mayor (Dirty Dave) Machado of Placerville who was arrested and charged on counts of conflict of interest for voting on Redevelopment issues while owning property within that same district, not to mention remodeling his rental units (which caught on fire) without a permit. Dirty Dave got a slap on the wrist some say because he knew where all the bodies are buried, not unlike the chump Nutting. Sis also wonders where the heck the FBI is?

It is common knowledge in Placerville that the District Attorney and the County Auditor Joe Harn are as crooked as a three dollar bill.

Sis also says that now that the Assistant District Attorney (the tall one) who has been outed blogging to the local paper spinning the news in favor of his boss the D.A. under the name of “Justice Insider”,what will his new blog name be? Sis also wants to know what the responsibility of a newspaper (The Democrat) is when they know that a local government official (Justice Insider) is known to be blogging misleading news to the public?

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2013/06/04/5471502/el-dorado-county-supervisor-nutting.html#storylink=cpy

Supervisor Nutting arrested

El Dorado County Supervisor Ray Nutting was arrested Tuesday on felony charges of failing to disclose income, filing false documents, perjury and failing to recuse himself from votes in which he had a financial interest.

El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pierson announced the District 2 representative’s arrest in a press release issued Tuesday afternoon.

The charges are related to grants Nutting received from the Sierra Coordinated Resource Management Council to complete fuel reduction projects funded by Proposition 40 grants on his south county property, as well as other income the supervisor allegedly failed to report. As an El Dorado County supervisor, Nutting takes part in votes that affect the SCRMC.

Count 1 alleges that Nutting knowingly filed a false economic interest statement in 2010.

Count 2 cites Nutting’s alleged failure to disclose the nearly $72,000 he received from the SCRMC in 2009. “Defendant belatedly attempted to report four-and-a-half years late in 2013 while still failing to disclose the entity which wrote the check,” the complaint states. It also states that Nutting failed to disclose $26,040 in cash deposited into his personal bank account, $6,803 received for work performed and more than $16,330 Nutting received in rental income.

Count 3 addresses paperwork Nutting submitted related to 2009 Prop. 40 brush clearing projects. The complaint alleges the documents contain false information and lack supporting material. Continue reading