Thursday, December 22, 2011

A Candlelight Vigil, and a Canadian Prosecutor Cites U.S. Homeland Security Negligence In the Matheson Case

Thank you to everyone who showed up to the candlelight vigil at the Matheson residence last night. It was a quiet and dignified expression of respect for the victims of the crime of child pornography. Notably present was Sierra Madre's Hometown Hero, John Shear. Additionally, rumored City Council candidate Carol Canterbury was there as well, though she chose to remain in her car. Most assumed it was because of the biting December chill in the air.

Both the Sierra Madre Patch and the Pasadena Star News have already published reports on the gathering, with many of those attending being interviewed by their on-site reporters. Click here and here to access. The Sierra Madre Weekly's Terry Miller also covered the event, and has supplied The Tattler with a series of excellent photographs, including the one we have posted here.

As of 7:30 this morning, the Candlelight Vigil story is the #1 "Most Viewed" article on the Pasadena Star News website.

Additionally today the Pasadena Star News has filed a report that I believe could lead many concerned people to question the commitment of U.S. Homeland Security officials regarding the protection of American citizens from criminals involved in the production and dissemination of child pornography. It is a shocking report. Click here to access the entire article.

Canadians: US Homeland Security knew of Sierra Madre man's porn case in October - The Department of Homeland Security's failure to search Robert Matheson's home in Sierra Madre immediately after his arrest for smuggling and possession of child pornography may have cost Canadian authorities the chance to secure a harsher sentence, officials in Nova Scotia said Wednesday.

Matheson, 67, was arrested Oct. 17 at the Halifax Stanfield Airport in Canada after border agents discovered 2,820 pornographic images and 285 videos of teenage boys. Most of the pictures showed teenage boys engaged in sex acts, said Craig Botterill, Nova Scotia Crown Attorney and the lead prosecutor on the Matheson case.

Canadian law enforcement officials contacted the Department of Homeland Security's Los Angeles office about Matheson's arrest on Oct. 20, they said. But federal agents didn't search his home until Monday.

The delay compromised the Canadian case against Matheson, Botterill said.

"(The delay) prevented me from painting a full picture of the accused at the sentencing hearing," Botterill said. "We wanted to know whether he was a person with a small amount of child porn on his computer or whether he was a big-time player."

Matheson, who hosted the 2010 campaign kickoff for former Sierra Madre Mayor Joe Mosca and is a member of the foothill city's Chamber of Commerce, was sentenced to 120 days in prison on Dec. 13.

Canadian officials still don't know what evidence was found in Monday's search. But had American investigators found a cache of porn stashed in Matheson's home or on his desktop computer, Botterill said he would have been able to argue that the Sierra Madre man deserved more time and may have been able to ascertain whether he was "involved in the filming of the videos."

Matheson's lawyers seized on the delays by American federal agents and pressed for the expediting of the trial, a right protected by Canadian law in the same way it is protected by the U.S. Constitution, Botterill said.

"His lawyer was very clever (in) getting him to plead guilty as soon as he could. Typically in Canada it will take six to nine months between the time you get arrested and a sentencing date," Botterill said. "I think his attorneys wanted him to plead guilty before the American authorities could finish their investigation, so we would know the least about him and he would get a lesser sentence."

As we have said on this blog before, a possible ramification of the 8 week delay by U.S. Homeland Security in searching Matheson's house in Sierra Madre could mean that accomplices of the convicted child pornography trafficker could have scrubbed the place clean of all incriminating evidence.

After all, Matheson's youthful male companion on his fateful journey north was allowed to return to the U.S. by Canadian officials, and could easily have visited his home here. Additionally, Matheson's roommate, presumably still living at this house, might also have taken advantage of the two month delay and sanitized the residence.

Could this possibly result in Matheson being set free after his relatively short sentence in Canada is fully served and he is deported back to the U.S.?

If that is the case, convicted child pornography smuggler Robert Matheson could soon be back and, within a few short months, once again walking the streets of Sierra Madre.

http://sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

73 comments:

  1. I just hope some young man will decide to get an attorney and sue this vile old coot, Robert Matheson.
    If he comes back to Sierra Madre, I would like to see him lose his house and his money, and any friends he had here.

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  2. That $1 million dollar house would be of interest to any attorney involved in such a lawsuit.

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  3. The Sierra Madre Candlelight Vigil story is the #1 Most Viewed article on the Pasadena Star News website right now. The story about the Canadian prosecutor is #3.

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  4. It looks as though the SMPD, bumbles not only their own cases, but international ones as well.

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  5. Carol is always welcome at Tattler events! She should have joined us. If the Sierra Madre Weekly, the PSN, and the Patch could join the Tattler in a moment of detente, certainly a hard working local gal could get on board!

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  6. Do you not read, 7:58 am? It is clear from the Canadians that it was not the SMPD who dropped the ball, but Homeland Security and the LAPD.

    It is disingenuous to remain dense in the face of facts.

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  7. Was there a hearing last night on the SMPD officers pay raise demands?

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  8. Special City Council Meeting, 8:05 am. Staff made a presentation and recommended the City send its "last best offer" to the POA: no raises, and a greater PERS percentage contribution resulting is a projected $100,000 savings to the City. No word on whether the POA will be accepting the offer.

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  9. This turned out to be pretty much as we called it in the second half to yesterday's post, so we decided to let it stand. The question now is whether there will now be a labor action by the POA. This is starting to shape up like the last go-around when Enid Joffe was mayor.

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  10. I would hope that one positive out of this horrible story is that the Pasadena Star News would discover the seriousness of Crawford's reporting and follow his leads.

    When I saw that Matheson made the front page of the PSN, my first thought was, just to cite one example, that Buchanan's water rate deception was also a front page story.

    "Mayor Lies, Ignores Vote, Raises Rates"

    The stories are there; I hope this Matheson scandal encourages the PSN to look at little more carefully.

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  11. If Homeland Security was lax here, we need to question if local disgraceful ex-mayor, Bart Doyle had anything to do with this cover-up?
    And why? To protect certain local politicians here in Sierra Madre who were friends with Matheson?
    Perhaps certain local dirts knew about Matheson's illegal activities, maybe,maybe now, but again, why did HS surpress an investigation by our local law enforcement?
    Strange, I hope we get some answers.

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  12. Not the Ghost of Webb Martin!December 22, 2011 at 8:19 AM

    The most amazing words in the article are as follows:

    "rumored city council candidate Carol Canterbury"

    Yikes! The wife and I still chuckle at the memory of what can only be described as a surreal "conversation" with "rumored city council candidate Carol Canterburry" that took place when we started shopping for a home in Sierra Madre. Thank heavens some other sweet woman in the Webb Martin office intervened when she recognized Carol was heading off into the Carolsphere.

    If she runs I many have to beloved leader Jhonnie B's planned run for a third term.

    That said, I would gladly support TC's candidacy!

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  13. Thank you to all who participated in what turned out to be a beautiful, albeit mighty cold, event. And thank you to officers of SMPD for their presence as well; the one young officer who joined us briefly was very kind.

    Carol Canterbury's spying from the shadows lent a bit of creep to the affair, equal to the shivers generated by the big house looming in the dark behind us. If she legitimately came to participate in the vigil, she surely would have exited her vehicle and joined us. I don't know what would possess someone to behave like this, although her behavior was textbook dirt. As I mentioned to Mr. Crawford last night, I find it inexplicable that the dirts would take the crazy stance they are taking towards this issue. Degrading an effort by local residents to lend to healing (the vigil) and supporting the perpetrator in so many ways is, to say the very least, vulgar and unseemly. Perhaps their very close association with Mr. Matheson has led to this bum's rush to distract the community from an issue that will not soon be forgotten, but to put political aspirations above all else in this matter is pretty horrifying. There's no point in shaking a finger at them and saying for shame, because it appears, particularly now, that they truly have no shame.

    Thank you to all in the community who have expressed compassion for the victims of this man's crimes, whether by blogging here, by attending the vigil, or otherwise. For those who would belittle these efforts, well, there's really not much else to say...

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  14. It's up to the naive residents of Sierra Madre to start paying attention to the facts presented here on this blog and now on other local blogs and newspapers.
    The Sierra Madre residents need to carefully vet politicians they elect.
    The water rate/bond scandal, the ALF scam to destroy Measure V, the outrageous arrogance of certain members of our current city council "we put you in, we can take you out" types.
    The blatant lies of certain council members, "I didn't know Matheson".
    The appointment of a disgraceful man who has caused terrible problems here in Sierra Madre, to be our liaison to the Pasadena School Board.
    The use of a disgraceful editor, Henderson, a proven in court liar and cheat and deadbeat, to use her vile commentary to slander innocent good people here in town, including two decent ex-mayors....all this has been overlooked by many Sierra Madre residents.
    It's high time people educated themselves. Local politics is more important to us than national politics. We can't tolerate corruption.
    The town you will lose due to naivete, the home you lose due to naivete will be your town, your home.
    Wake up, Sierra Madre residents. If you think time is running out...you're right.

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  15. I don't personally know Ms Canterbury. I do know from personal experience the Judy Webb is the most unethical person I have ever met.

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  16. Much better choice of green, Crawford. Never let it be said that the Tattler doesn't enjoy the festive holiday season!

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  17. For the victims of child pornography:
    May the light from the candles lead them to a better future.

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  18. Thanks for posting that 8:52.
    That was Shirley Moore's message, according to the PSN.

    Compare this, Tattler readers:

    2008...Canyon resident Shirley Moore kicks off MaryAnn MacGillivray's campaign for city council at Nature Friends in the canyon. Shirley was/is a supporter of MacGillivray.

    2010....convicted pervert Robert Matheson kicks off Joe Mosca and Josh Moran's campaign for city council. Fortunately, he will no longer be able to support these dirt candidates.

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  19. Anon 8:05
    You have to understand that the local police we pay with our local tax dollars are supposed to protect and serve our community. If they have been conducting an investigation from the get go, I apologize.
    When all the facts are revealed, I am sure you will find they did nothing. No surveillance, no questioning of neighbors knowledge of the activities at the house. Who were the frequent guests? No warrant was requested by SMPD of the house, and so far the entire SMPD involvement has been to seen a young officer to the vigil last night.
    Yes THEY the SMPD Bumbled the case. They the SMPD knew of this case as soon as all of us did, at the latest. Why are you defending the SMPD for doing nothing?

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  20. My complaint is the silence from city hall.

    The eblasts should give some information, yeah?

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  21. The response from City Hall has been weak at best. Josh Moran told the Star News that he didn't know the guy, and when reminded that he had attended Joe's kickoff party at Matheson's house, backed down. Nancy Walsh also said she didn't know the guy, and said it was the responsibility of the SMPD. Who apparently been frozen out by Homeland Security. Pretty sad state of affairs. Don't they give these people any PR training at all?

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  22. Nobody stopped the SMPD but themselves.

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  23. I work with a Cyberbullying Curriculum program with 7/8 graders which comes out of NYC I have learned and am still learning how fast the predator works on and off the internet.All of our children are very vulnerable. It is astounding. To share some facts:

    10 Ploys of offline Sexual Predators:
    1. Appeals for Assistance: Can you help me do a job
    2.Job Offers: I will pay you to do a job for me
    3.Ego Offers: You are so talented I promise to sign you up with a Hollywood agent
    4.Love & Affection: You deserve/need love,appreciation,special attention from me
    5.Curiosity:Anything designed to peek a minor's curiosity
    6.Games and Fun: Promises you excitement, games, fun
    7.Authority: Posing as or actually or authority and uses that against minor
    8.Fear and Coercion: Uses threats and coercion to create fear to get you to comply
    9. Confidence and Trust: Using trusted relationships to engender trust of the predator
    10.Gifts: Promises to give the target a gift they want.

    This is from the Child Safety Research and Innovation Center. Copyright 2008

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  24. I had to be at another meeting last night but asked Diane Shear to light a candle for me. I want to publically thank Shirley Moore for putting this vigil in motion for all the reasons that she would do so. Shirley is a woman of strong convictions, feelings and compassion and I am proud to have her as a friend. If my memory serves me correctly she was also one of several of us Canyon residents who held a candlelight vigil for the issue of deadly fencing and the several deer impailed in 1999. Committment to a better world is not a one time thing, but a life-time commitment.

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  25. Know your neighbors:
    http://meganslaw.ca.gov/search_main.aspx?searchtype=zipcode&lang=ENGLISH

    Take Carol's advise and educate your children on online predators AND watch their online activities. Make your children aware that there are predators on the street. It is up to you to protect your children and knowledge is the best power!

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  26. Some of the members of the civility party are giving very good examples of how child pornographers get away with it, how this Matehson nightmare of a person got away with this while while socializing with one political circle in town.

    People don't want to believe such a terrible thing is true, and if they accept that it is true, they don't want to believe that they know anyone who could do such a thing. So the signs that all is not well are ignored, the wierd remarks or the odd circumstances are willfully, willingly put aside. In the name of pleasantness, a supporter of child pornography, or worse, was allowed to live among us.

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  27. We are all stunned by the recent event regarding Matheson. Horrible. However Lambasting the SMPD without knowing details is going too far. Our candidates need the support of the police and fire departments. And, critizing other citizens is not helpful as well. We want to win the election,so we must only attack the policies not the people and be positive about our candidate's issues. Their dirty tricks can be countered by our constructive behavior.

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  28. There is the distinct possibility that the US Department of Homeland Security left the SMPD out of the loop all the way up until the last minute. It hasn't been determined exactly when any part of Sierra Madre's government was informed of either his arrest or conviction. For some reason the LAPD was, but it is conceivable that they didn't share any information, either. Hopefully conclusive proof of this, either way, will come soon. We do deserve to know.

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  29. How's that been working out for you 12:55?

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  30. Could we back up a moment - what was Carol Canterbury doing at the vigil if she stayed in her car?
    Did she light a candle in her car?

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  31. There are always those who would like to blame others for the failures of our city government. And believe me, the failures are there, especially under Mosca and Buchanan. The Matheson situation is only the latest episode.

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  32. In certainly hope not, 1:04. The poor dear could have asphyxiated herself!

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  33. 12:55, I also believe that focusing on policy is the way to go, and constructive behavior is good, but the people who play dirty politics in Sierra Madre have managed to make voters believe that they are the victims. Very frustrating, twisted situation.

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  34. There is a very silly campaign going on right now by the Wistarians (aka the "Shady Ladies Club") to proclaim their loved ones victims. They seem to want people to accept that the truth does not apply to them, and that those who speak it are engaged in some sort of vendetta against them. Something very few people seem to be buying into right now.

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  35. There is an article up on Yahoo News saying that 12 million Motrin bottles are being pulled off store shelves. That must be quite a headache for the manufacturer.

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  36. Promoting policies that benefit Sierra Madre should be the focus of our candidates.

    When these positions are co-opted by the opposition (as we know they will) the research team needs to go into full research mode and bring up the failure in their past stances and their out and out lies.

    This is why I strongly recommend John Buchanan to not run for a third term, which not only would fly in the face of the past 22 years of respect for this resolution on term limits (April 1990 that has been applied to City Council candidates and volunteers on various commissions. But if he does file for a third term, or if Bart Doyle shows up or any of the bunch in their support groups, past and present, we have to go for their record.

    It is not character or personality but policies. However, this has never happened in the past: if you disagreed with a person's stance it was always followed by a whinning "don't you like me?" No, I don't like your position or policy. Plain and simple. But always hard in "everything's hunky dory in Sierra Madre".

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  37. 1:03, Sorry, my candidates lost the last election but can be confident that lambasting the police is not the way to go.

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  38. Dirt "civility" should be countered by everything we can throw at them.

    Passivity invites agression.....always, it's the law of the jungle.

    Give 'em hell Crawford!!!!!!!!

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  39. The Shady Ladies Club! LOL!!

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  40. Thanks 1:41 at last a voice of reason. Attack the policy, not the person.

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  41. This whole "feel good" blog is really weird. I have not read one word in the Tattler that suggests that anybody at City Hall actually knew or assisted in this guy's child porn usage. And the way I read this blog I have never seen the suggestion that the CC or other officials were engaged in similar exploitation themselves. What I find a bit shocking and pathetic is that when confronted with the reality that this guy is involved in child pornography (whether user or purveyor or . . . ), they try to pretend that they do not know him. Why do they do this? They only look defensive and ridiculous. Why do they not simply say, OMG! We never had any idea. And then distance themselves. Revelations about people come to light every day. Some are shocking and horrible. We do not vouch for everyone we know or associate with. When our neighbour turns out to be a meth dealer or a child pornographer or a horrible drunk or . . . , we are justified in being shocked because they are not what they appear. Why are the prestigious members of Sierra Madre society acting trying to pretend that they never knew him.

    Their indignation their duplicitous behaviour would be humorous if it were not so pathetic and hypocritical. Here is a big monologue about how terrible John Crawford is because he allows people to post anonymously. This is written by somebody using the nom de plume Elizabeth Ann Wistar--as in Wistaria. Give me a break. Sauce for the goose is evidently not sauce for the gander with these people.

    They rail on and on about this anonymity issue, but never acknowledge that for over 30 years response to criticism has met with horrible ad hominem attacks. This town would rather strangle on its own foolishness than engage in a discussion of the issues--actual bullying (rather than the cyber-bullying they complain of) is the order of the day. Stigmatization and alienation, black-balling, call it what you want, these folks seem to be more interested in personalities rather than content or issues. It's a pretty sad state of affairs.

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  42. Thank you Dr. Staccato. The problem the Wistaridiots are having is over the pictures of their special guys with Bob Matheson. Until those started emerging nobody had heard a peep from these folks. Once it did, however, they became positively unhinged. They know how damaging this all is, and they have obviously lost their minds over it. I guess the other problem is that they can't keep up with the people who post here on the Tattler. They have neither the wit, the writing skills or the arguments to deal with what gets said here. So they just whine and whine.

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  43. Thanks Dr. S. Historical accuracy is important.

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  44. Dr. Staccato!

    You are a true friend of Sierra Madre.
    Thank you for your post.

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  45. 8:16: Perhaps you haven't been reading the Star-News. Not only did we break this story last Tuesday, Mr. Crawford has been a semi-regular contributor to our opinion pages.

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  46. This purple haze seems to descend every time the smear machine goes into high gear, a la The Cumquat.

    That's all it is, just smokescreen. You know what's going on when you see it.

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  47. I am confident Larry Boy does not read the TattlerDecember 22, 2011 at 5:03 PM

    Thanks Frank for your excellent work on this. As a subscriber I know full well who broke this story. You were even ahead of the slumbering members of the SMPD.

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  48. Mr. Girardot, welcome to the Tattler! Nice to know our hometown blogger is being recognized. Must also compliment you and the PSN on the professionalism of your reporters, expecially Brian Charles and Brenda Gazar.

    I guess I want to say that for years Sierra Madre news seldom made the front page of the PSN; felt a lot like a backwater over here on the East Side, and although the news isn't always great, it's good to read about our trials and tribulations.

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  49. Frank!
    Yes, you sure did break the story. Wednesday morning. We are subscribers to the PSN and were shocked to read this.
    We appreciate all the local press who considers this important news for residents in the area.
    Right on the heels of the Sandusky story that went all over the world, this is even more disturbing.
    The story you folks did today on the Candlelight vigil was very nice. I think this made people feel better. It was a good thing to do.

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  50. Dr. S:
    Your elegance with words and ability to tell the truth so well is a welcome breath of fresh air in a small community of big bigots and liars.

    The predators have already revealed themselves when our red faced then City Councilman, disgusting Mayor JB admitted a few years back that he welcomed a little bit of whatever it was the Cumquat offered. I do not have the exact quote, but we all remember the moment he admitted that he was a pervert and was not embarrassed as a father and husband to say porn was OK.

    Isn't it interesting how silent he is now, when he always blabbers on saying nothing. Perhaps, he too, will move off this continent, and take Josh, the denier with him.

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  51. Always intrigued by the discussions here, I keep an eye on that other site recently started by that guy Lady Wistar. If you look at the links page provided at that site, many direct to a John Crawford page on some antibullying site of some sort.

    http://cyberbullyingreport.com/bully/john-crawford-sir-eric-sierra-madre-tattler-cyberbullying-296.aspx

    It's pretty obvious whoever is doing that tattlertattler business is a loose canon and will inevitably cross the wrong line. I think a legal eagle could find some fun stuff already based upon the links on that site.

    Further, I'd think places like St. Rita's, Beantown, Danny Osti's Tree Service, City of Sierra Madre and others linked on the site would question the wisdom of allowing themselves to be associated with such a strange site.

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  52. Now seriously what was Cantabury doing in her car with that lit candle? That seems very odd to be hiding out in the car at a vigil.

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  53. To the crooked the truth always seems like bullying.

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  54. Carol might have been lost.

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  55. John Buchanans Website Endorsement Causes Outrage
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdDpnMajQoc

    Neuroblast Films

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  56. This is priceless, Dave at 7:03

    If you listen to the background, you'll hear Carol Canterbury in the foray laughing loudly and making fun of speaker Fay Angus.

    Carol Canterbury.....are you lady wister?
    You are not a nice person, at all.

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  57. Neuroblast please take your youtube video of lovely Faye and put it up on a giant flatscreen at Kersting Court.

    Won't that be a great public confession?

    thank you for recording this. His denial is classic....

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  58. Oh come on Cantabury wasn't lost. I'm just imagining her in that car peering over at the vigil with her night vision binoculars in one hand and the lit candle in the other.

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  59. Carol wanted to see but not be seen.

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  60. B. D. Howes Downtown Dirt & Sierra Madre Cumquat Owner

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c49pO1MVYGA

    Neuroblast Films

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  61. Let us not forget who's in this little group of dirt and dirty websites in Sierra Madre, and they are proud of it.

    Lisa Spigai-Perez announces a new website, downtowndirt.org

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOrJK5NgY4Q

    Neuroblast Films

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  62. They're at it again: diminishing, marginalizing, and trivializing so as to make the Tattler something not of and by the people of Sierra Madre.

    And who are "they"? Technogeek B. D. Howes, realtors Carol Canturberry and Toni Moran (give it up Toni, your boy's an adult now, you don't have to button his collar and straighten his tie), and the boys and girls behind Lady Wistar. Certainly the 3rd string, but out there none the less.

    Over the past couple of decades these people have been running this town like a high school clique, dictating what is good, sunny and bright. And accusing the rest of us of lurking in the shadows, shuffling our feet, and singing in do wop choirs.

    So tell me? Civil or not so civil?

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  63. Absolutely right, Chief.

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  64. Question: Why is it that B.D. Howe seems to get slammed by folks on this site, yet according to Whois.Net, B.D. Howe Inc. owns the domain name SierraMadreTattler.Com?

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  65. SierraMadreTattler.Com is yet another dirt smear based website created to siphon traffic off of the website you are reading (sierramadretattler.blogspot.com)

    Neuroblast Films

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  66. Howes holds the rights to the URLs for the Cumquat and Downtown Dirt. That he is a former Rotary Club President seems to suggest a certain pattern of abuse.

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  67. Lol. I checked in just to see how you guys were doing a year or two after you kicked all the interesting people out of town with your "outdoor smoking ban". Sounds great, you got a buncha child pornographers and molesters living over there now! Best of luck to ya, with your local businesses and your funny sense of moral order that only applies to yourselves =)
    - Written from a place where I'm free to have a pint and a smoke

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  68. Welcome back cigarette kid!December 23, 2011 at 3:43 PM

    Josh, a whole year has gone by, and you still are not able to put together a cogent argument?

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  69. Everybody knows cigarette smoke curbs the sexual appetite. If only Bob Matheson smoked.

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  70. Why are all the clubs in this town so full of creeps?

    All of them. Some of the worst people in town are in these clubs.

    They may have a few naive people who just don't know who is leading them by the nose.

    The worst offender is Susan Henderson, con artist, her "paper" and columnists are enemies of the people of this town.

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  71. Josh, would that place happen to be your mothers basement?
    Don't go away mad, just go away..byebye interesting guy!

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  72. Nah -- that would be a village in Europe where the ban is ignored, and where the bars and restaurants are still full of artists and musicians sitting next to stone masons and farmers -- instead of being packed with yuppies and their screaming children. We even have fireplaces where we burn oak logs *inside the house* -- and roast chestnuts over them. I know, it's barbaric! Enjoy those SUV fumes -- and Merry Christmas!

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  73. Europe is a good place for smokers like you, Josh. They have free state supplied health care there.

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