Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The 5 Great Unsolved Mysteries of Sierra Madre

I was mulling over a couple of topics that I thought I wanted to write about this evening. There is always something or other that needs a little airing out, you know. As a muse, Sierra Madre can at times be a very generous place, and often there is much more happening than the one article a day rate we work at here can accommodate. If only I had the time to write about it all.

But then I began to think about all those sensations of yesterday. The crimes and scandals that, when written about, drew hundreds of comments and thousands of hits. But only a few of these controversial matters ever came to any sort of resolution, or even got close to actually being solved.

Officially, none of what is to follow ever gets discussed by our local officials. Except to say they remain under investigation and therefore cannot be talked about. Or so they say. Though there are others that won't get discussed because those in charge would prefer not to see these matters brought back out into the open. The reason for this is it would be a cause for further embarrassment.

So I dug back into the thousand or so articles stacked up here on this blog and pulled out 5 stories that collectively I am calling "The 5 Great Unsolved Mysteries of the Sierra Madre." All of these articles covered controversies that, in their time, were important and contentious events. And now, months or even years later, they are the stuff of local legend. Bad things that should not have happened, and never were resolved. And today only get spoken about here.

#1: The EVG Scandal. Back in late 2010 it was discovered that hundreds of people had suffered the theft of their financial identities at a gas station known by the name of EVG. At first the City seemed to want to hold this one filling station crime wave at arms length, preferring instead to claim that the Sierra Madre Police Department was deep into an investigation, and that the credit and debit card skimmers responsible would almost certainly be arrested soon.

But then more and more people stepped forward to reveal that they too were victims of the EVG credit and debit card fraud operation. First 100, then 200, and when that number went beyond 400 people, it became politically untenable for the City to avoid the issue any longer. In a January 6, 2011 article entitled "EVG Scandal: The Press Conference," we described it this way:

The big news is the Feds are involved and the Secret Service is the agency. In addition to protecting Presidents they are also assigned to the topic of money. Counterfeiting, credit card fraud, theft or information related to money, all fall within their purview. Though it was not stated outright by Chief Diaz, despite my questioning, this indicates that the EVG situation is likely an organized crime related operation. Federal involvement is triggered when the crime is suspected of being interstate or international in nature. We've made it to the big time.

As of today the culprits responsible for this mass identity theft at the now defunct EVG gas station remain at large. The rest of this article can be found here.

#2: The Matheson Case. This remains a highly controversial matter here in Sierra Madre. A resident of our town, caught at a Canadian airport with large amounts of child pornography tucked away on his laptop, was tried, convicted and imprisoned there, only to later return home to no further consequences. In the opinion of many the delayed search of Robert Matheson's home was a bungled mess, and rather than admit to it the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has chosen to remain silent for months. As has the Sierra Madre Police Department, who were equally non-proactive. The result being that Matheson never was registered here as a sex offender, and is as free and easy today as he was before his arrest.

Here is how we described it in a February 26, 2012 article called, "The Matheson Return: Did the City Make the Right Call?"

Back on February 4th we posted an article entitled "Has Sierra Madre Prepared for the Return of Bob Matheson?" It turn out that yes, it did prepare something. At least for itself. However, given the fact that Bob Matheson had been arrested and imprisoned in Canada for possession of a laptop computer containing 2,820 pictures of naked young boys, along with 285 videos of boys having sex with adult men, the City's conclusions might not be as restrictive or punitive as many in this community would expect. Apparently what the City of Sierra Madre did was build for itself the case that it had to do nothing.

To date Robert Matheson has been allowed to wander the town as he sees fit. The City did not even supply its residents with a photo of what he looks like today. The rest of the article can be read here.

#3: The Measure Y Theft. Now that the residents of Sierra Madre have become aware that there will be a lot less Measure TT money for school building here than they had originally been led to believe, perhaps it is a good time to recall the theft of hundreds of thousands of dollars from a previous school bond debacle, Measure Y. Here is how we described it in a May 2011 piece called, "Measure Y Theft Case Goes Nowhere."

Recently we had discussed the $800,000 that the Pasadena Unified School District paid out to a one-man consultant firm to do some Measure TT construction work on various PUSD facilities. Only to fire the guy later, but only after they'd already paid him a King's ransom. Two school board members have now called for an investigation of this rather cavalier handling of bond money that we as tax paying homeowners are expected to pay off over the next 60 years or so.

But before that there was the sad case of the previous school construction bond issue, Measure Y. A couple of contractors and the PUSD employee who was supposed to keep an eye on these guys were suspected of having purloined over $300,000 in Measure Y money, much to the chagrin of an outraged Superintendent Diaz who loudly swore that the guilty parties would be brought to justice.

But they never were. Rather the District Attorney concluded that the PUSD's Measure Y record keeping was so inept that it could never be proven that the $300,000 came from the school district. The result being the crooks got to keep our money. Read about the rest of it here.

#4: The Use of Uniformed Sierra Madre Police on Election Material. This is a fairly recent case, but as with all the others listed here, there has been no resolution. Just assurances that some sort of an investigation is going on, and nobody involved can discuss it. The cone of silence has been lowered. Here is a bit from a March 22 article called, "City Is Investigating Harabedian 'Law Enforcement' Postcard."

Apparently the revelations we posted yesterday regarding the suspected inappropriate political use by City Council candidate John Harabedian of a photo showing Sierra Madre Police Officers in what appears to be PD uniforms has raised a significant level of concern in this community. And because of this concern the story is now beginning to show up on competing media outlets as well. In other words, this one is starting to get legs.

And judging by what Patch is reporting, the City of Sierra Madre is also taking this matter quite seriously. "Sierra Madre's Public Information Officer Elisa Weaver said that the City is reviewing the photo. 'We are aware of the situation and we're looking into it,' said Weaver, adding that she has seen the image."

Yet another investigation that continues behind the scenes. Or so it is said. Read more by clicking here.

#5: City Hall's Fabricated Water Rate Increase Story. We never have heard from City Hall about who exactly cooked up the story that the water rate increase was necessary so that old pipes and infrastructure could be repaired. Only to have it later discovered by residents that it was actually for servicing old water bond debt. Certainly we have a right to know. After all, it is our money, and those who receive it work for us. From an October 25, 2010 article called "The Smoking Water Gun," here is the lead-in to what was at the time a rather large revelation.

After months of being told that the proposed water rate increase was based on the need to repair such water infrastructure as deteriorating pipes from as far back as the 1920s, the truth has finally come out for all to see. Even for those who ordinarily don't notice that sort of thing, or would wish to even when it becomes unavoidable.

After telling the citizens of Sierra Madre that they would be required to bear up under 37% rate increase to keep water infrastructure from collapsing, it turns out the money raised wouldn't be used as advertised. Rather it would have to be spent on old water bond debt.

Of course, we know as little now about who was responsible for that cock and bull story as we did back then. The City conducted a most effective cover-up. The rest of the article can be read by clicking here.

There you go. Sierra Madre's five great unsolved mysteries. If you are planning to try and get to the bottom of these things yourself, be sure to bring a bloodhound.

http://sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

46 comments:

  1. Sierra Madre is a lawless town! Controlled by criminal elements! We have white collar political crime. We have organized identity theft crime, and worse..... dangerous child preditor crime...right here in Sierra Madre and it is ignored by "autorities" and most of the press.
    With the exception of traffic tickets, we are lawless!
    Does anyone even care?

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    1. Sure, Harabedian and his law firm. They defend white collar criminals...

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  2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=58_HVSR0N0s

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    1. Looks like Mayday commie propaganda. Just what we need, more excuses to encourage the totalitarians.

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    2. The 99% are the very people these idiots are hurting!
      Vandalize their business, stop them from going to work!
      Outrageous!
      Why aren't they vandalizing Warren Buffet or Donald Trump?
      Is any politician speaking out about this? Anyone?
      I understand our fabulous State of California Assembly voted yesterday to study California contractors....ask if they are "gay"??????? This is so unbelievable, it would be laughable, but this is California. No wonder people are moving out in droves.

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    3. That sounds like music straight from Mother Russia when she was imprisoned in the Soviet Union.

      You're right 8:07. As one wag put it, the next time people want to riot in L.A., they should go to Beverly Hills to do it.

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    4. 6:52 has probably been assigned the task of posting that youtube link on all the local blogs in a geographical area.

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    5. Gott in Himmel, the font used for the title of that call to action to sit down was one favored by the Third Reich!

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    6. I think the fight against the unholy alliance of government and corporate power is something that both conservatives and liberals alike fight against. I know we do it here in Sierra Madre.

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  3. I have come to believe that the reason Matheson was never registered as a sex offender here is because he made it clear to certain persons of influence in town that were such a thing to happen, he would share information with the press that some people would do anything to prevent getting out. There really is no other explanation.

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    1. I tend to agree with you, 7:11.
      Usually these perverts have a network of like minded monsters.
      Obviously there are some in Sierra Madre and perhaps some that are now "fugitives" from Sierra Madre who were/are involved with this evil "cult".
      I worry about our young boys and teens in and around the area, this Matheson is dangerous, always will be dangerous.
      How many other "matheson types" are in Sierra Madre?
      Who are they?
      Did the police ever investigate that question?
      I just hope parents of young boys (and girls) are keeping close tabs on where their kids are. Don't trust anyone with your children. To think of the people in Sierra Madre who trusted this Matheson monster.....who had young boys.......it just sickens me.
      It's one thing to get your credit restored. It's one thing to have to pay higher taxes to crooks. It's bad enough to have to pay for home protection, but to have your child a victim of one of these perverts.......it's one of the worst things that could happen.
      I pray for anyone in this town who was a victim.

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  4. Dear Moderator,
    Today's article is all about money, sex, and power. Way to go to boost those blog visits!

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    1. Um, you do realize we're talking about Sierra Madre here, right?

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    2. Child pornography is not sex, 7:29.
      It's mental illness, and so far, it's incurable.

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    3. Today's article is not called Money Sex Power Come Take a Look, so it won't have the draw you imagine, Anonymous @7:29. That might happen now and then based on a title, like it did to the pro-development gang in Sierra Madre, when they christened themselves Downtown Dirt. Or to their obscene websites cousins, whose names you no doubt recall.

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    4. And here I thought it was about unsolved mysteries. I guess some people just want them to stay that way.

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  5. The sad fact is that government workers do as little as possible, there is no bottom line, no stock holders to keep happy, just come to work in your free taxpayer supplied car, gets lots of overtime and then retire after a big last minute promotion to inflate your retirement pay.

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  6. Mystery Number Six: How could John Buchanan take so long to say so little and accomplish even less.

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  7. because what he got cought with is gross, disgusting but not to register as a pervert. people should be worried about the creeps we don't know about, matheson is now on everyones radar, go to megan's law and put in 91024 on the map,,,,

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    1. Unless Matheson is somehow prohibited from going online, and never, ever being around anyone under 40, he's still a threatening creep.

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    2. I'm still hoping that some young man will step forward with the best attorney in California and sue this man, Matheson for damages! I want to see all his wealth taken away!

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    3. I hope that it can be proven that no young man was ever molested by Matheson and that he dies choking on an oyster! Soon.

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  8. Thanks Tattler for your accuracy. This is why we need the real free press so much. Keep people's memories working and don't let bad actions be ignored.

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  9. Who cooked up the water rate hike lies? It had to be Mayor Buchanan and City Manager Aquilar.

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    1. Joe Mosca was Mayor when all of that was rolled out.

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    2. Agreed 8:40. They would be the ones to call the shots. Vetted by Levin.

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    3. Do you think Joe had ideas though? Beyond his own small world?

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    4. You're right, 8:47 - so I'll modify my statement. It had to be Mayor Pro Tem Buchanan and City Manager Aguilar.

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    5. Joe was at least a cheerleader for going with the rusty pipes lie. I think Joe felt he would have no problem selling it to the residents. And it was a major sales pitch. The water walks, Bruce and his rusty pipe, the long detailed articles in the Screwy Mountain Views. They sold this one hard.

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    6. Of course Mosca had no problem with it. What was one more lie?

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  10. It's quite plain by this morning's posts that the Matheson issue is key to understanding the overall mysteries presented by the Tattler. The consensus seems to be that to know what Matheson knows about Sierra Madre give us a thorough understanding of the darker side this quaint foothill community.

    We should bring pressure to bear on all those in positions of power in this town to completely clear the air.

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    1. I've always maintained that Sierra Madre has evolved over the last 50 years into a vortex of evil and it's people like Matheson, Doyle, Buchanan, Moran that feed the entity with their actions.

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  11. You don't REALLY expect to solve these mysteries do you? All of them involve coverups, money and deception. Those things take years to come to light and not in my lifetime.

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  12. One important thing the Tattler does is to keep issues on the forefront. It is so easy to forget how all this connects. This is a service beyond measure.

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    1. The city is having trouble getting their message out now. They never got their side of the uut story out and it was crushed by the voters.

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  13. Glad the Tattler has returned to more interesting topics that are town specific. I thank them for the continued pressure for those responsible in bringing the Truth out. Prosecution should be in order when uncovered. I really do not think Matheson however has the political power or the money to hide from what is law. Nor do I believe that he was buddy buddy enough to know of any misappropriation of funds within the Public Works dept, Doyle, or anything else for that manner. So the argument that he is going to "spill the beans" if he is required to register with Megans Law site does not hold water. Matheson is puny compared to the lies that the city has made. Tattler with your pressure you can expose this creep and drive him out.

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    1. Hey, you roused Steve!

      Please continue with the muckraking on a large scale as well as in town. It's interconnected.

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    2. "drive him out" 11:53?
      Why would you say such a thing?

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    3. Steve is confusing vigilantism with covering the news. He seems like a jumpy dude.

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  14. To me the mysteries are the symptoms of Sierra Madrean's nonchalance about the town, the political leaders, the governmental accountability. It seems that too many people take it for granted that this unique, small town is just that - not knowing about the intense and constant struggles to keep it. So good for you Tattler. Don't let the scalawags off the hook.

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  15. Yeah, let bygones be bygones is what landed us here with no forensic audits.
    I do not believe that a reputable forensic auditor couldn't figure out our financial past even if there was a crazy record-destroying employee.
    In fact, isn't that what a forensic audit outfit would specialize in, recovering lost or hidden information?

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  16. Another mystery from long ago - when the sculptor of Mount Rushmore, Gutzon Borglum, lived here, who poisoned his dogs?

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  17. Who stole the spider from the park is another mystery of greater concern to me

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  18. I see a similarity in these five mysteries: lack of consequences.
    The EVG crew needs to be caught & put away, Harabedian needs to be busted and fined, PUSD needs to disband and reorganize, the city needs to come clean about the water fraud, and Matheson needs to register as a sex offender. Consequences.

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  19. Steve, maybe you should cut down on the caffeine.

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  20. Why does anyone want anyone to leave? Then they are running away.

    Their needs to be an owning up to the behavior. So many people just do whatever they want and cavalierly continue the behavior, living a lie!
    Think Susan.....

    The pattern of the parade with the Elephant...but they did not get away with that.....lying to and setting up John Shear for Citizen of the Year....what a nasty way to treat people.....there will always be evil in the world, but what is hilarious is that in this small town people do not think they are noticed and really are called out and will be exposed and brought to final justice.

    Thanks John. Keep reminding us that we must always fight to keep our democracy. History will tell the truth about the water, uut,the PUSD mess. Worst of all the sex addict cannot help it and will repeat his impulsive behavior and get caught. It's bound to all unfold.

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