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Occupy Protesters’ Attempt To Arrest Mayor Sanders Fails

About 20 members of Occupy San Diego tried to make a citizen's arrest of Mayor Jerry Sanders today, alleging that he committed embezzlement when he allowed the temporary name change of Qualcomm Stadium to "Snapdragon Stadium.''

After a news conference in Civic Center Plaza, the group went to the mayor's office in City Hall, where San Diego police Capt. Mark Jones informed them that Sanders was elsewhere.

After spending around 30 minutes in the lobby of the mayor's office, they then went to the offices of City Clerk Elizabeth Maland and later to City Attorney Jan Goldsmith, who in a pair of memos had opined that the stadium name change was unlawful under terms of the city's naming rights deal with the company.

Qualcomm paid the city $1,000 to compensate for staff time associated with last month's temporary name change, during which time the facility hosted two college football bowl games and a Chargers contest. All three events were on prime time national television.

The name change was part of a promotion for Qualcomm's new "Snapdragon'' line of mobile processors.

Ray Lutz, an Occupy San Diego leader who formed a new group called the Citizens' Oversight Project, said Qualcomm received at least $125,000 worth of exposure and probably more.

The money the city actually received in exchange was "a paltry sum,'' said Lutz, a former congressional candidate who was arrested last fall during the Occupy San Diego protests.

Mike Garcia, another leader of the group wanting to arrest Sanders, said the arrangement was a perfect example of corporate insiders influencing government officials for special deals.

"We want sweetheart backroom deals like this to stop,'' Garcia said.

A spokesman for Sanders said the mayor would be back in the office later today, but had no comment.

Jones directed an officer to take documents from Lutz for later review. Lutz was asked several times to state his case against the mayor, and responded by asking the officer if she was willing to help make an arrest if she found the evidence convincing.

The leaders of the group said they would go to the District Attorney's Office and even to the state Attorney General's Office, if necessary.

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Avatar for user 'NotNow'

NotNow | January 30, 2012 at 6:46 p.m. ― 5 years ago

Arrest the Mayor? I think they should arrest Ray Lutz and make him pay for all the damage he has caused the City of San Diego. He has taken over the Occupy movement for San Diego. Just Google this guy and see what he has done to our beautiful City. He even hides behind his own corporation and lives in a very nice place (address on website). Is he 1% or 99%? I thought Occupy hated Corporations, but he is their leader... Check out Derek Cassady while your at it. They both are using Mike Aguirre for large lawsuits, interesting how much you can make in politics.

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Avatar for user 'Startaster'

Startaster | January 30, 2012 at 10:49 p.m. ― 5 years ago

For clarity's sake, please note that Occupy does not 'hate' corporations. The point of the movement is to call out abusive use of power and money to skew social and political influence into the hands of a few. Responsible and ethically conscious corporations as well as responsible and ethically sound capitalism is not what is being challenged. To state the opposite is a truthless distortion which simply condemns what it does not comprehend. What Lutz is demonstrating happens to be exactly what we need more of at this time. When government fails the people, then people must fill the void by speaking out and holding its officials completely accountable. The city attorney already stated that the mayor took an illegal unilateral action that violated laws clearly on the books. And if the city council or the city attorney will not take action to hold such corruption accountable then who will? This is an exercise in citizen democracy, a responsibility of anyone who strives to keep informed and engaged in the betterment of civic life for everyone.

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Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | January 31, 2012 at 6:59 a.m. ― 5 years ago

The fora in which to engage that action are either courthouses or voting stations. File a suit or vote to elect somebody else, but a citizen’s arrest, while in arms reach of the police is asinine.

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Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | January 31, 2012 at 8:16 a.m. ― 5 years ago

NOTNOW, as you should you know by now, in the USA, because of the politico-economic structure, you NEED money just to effect change--short of violence.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | January 31, 2012 at 9:58 a.m. ― 5 years ago

Why do we even have citizen's arrests if they are not taken seriously, or if high-level politicians are exempt from them.

I'm not saying the police should blindly support the Ocuupiers, but they could at least be a *little* objective instead of acting like Sander's henchmen.

Of course we all know what a backward cowtown San Diego is, I'm surprised there is even an Occupy movement in this town. I wouldn't expect a citizens arrest of a public official would ever really be taken seriously here.

With all that said, I have to ask why Occupy focuses on this? San Diego is rampant with crooked politicians breaking the law constantly, and Sanders is, relatively speaking, one of the better ones.

Why hasn't anyone tried making a citizen's arrest against County Supervisor Bill Horn?

Mr. Horn has been far more corrupt and engaged in far more criminal activity than our mayor. And he is just one example.

I just think that for taking such dramatic action, Occupy could have found a more compelling issue and more compelling public official to arrest.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | January 31, 2012 at 10:08 a.m. ― 5 years ago

If Occupy San Diego decides to make a citizens arrest against "Papa" Doug Manchester, I will love them forever and ever! Hell, I will join in the citizens arrest!

Come on occupy, Sanders is a lame duck riding out his final months in office. Go after those who pose a real threat to our future, like the millionaire developer cum political activist cum newspaper mogul who is raping our county's leading media source.

Just wait until Manchester decides who he wants for mayor.

We will see the endorsements, and I'm sure yellow journalistic slams against the opponents.

Manchester wants to own San Diego.

He has control of our media now, and he is fingering around to see who is best for his puppet government at city hall so he can have back-door influence there too.

One corrupt, partisan, 1% hack controlling our media AND our. It's government.

I can't think of anything more scary for our city.

Is Occupy concerned about this??????????

It will make Jerry Sander's reign as mayor look like the golden age!

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Avatar for user 'philosopher3000'

philosopher3000 | January 31, 2012 at 11:39 a.m. ― 5 years ago

Nice work citizens, this is just one of the many Sanders' Scandals

When you look at what he's done to the City Services, cutting libraries, swimming pools, and recreation centers to skeleton crews with limited hours, letting the infrastructure rot as streets and sewers fall apart, selling off city land assets, letting Balboa Park erode, and following the lead of the CCDC, Sanders will leave a legacy of destruction.

Now the 'Strong Mayor' is managing the Police Scandals, and paying big pensions to city management that will cost our kids their future, while blaming unions (managers aren't allowed in unions, it's a conflict of interest). And he wants to give his campaign contributors a few parting gifts, a Billion dollars in the form of a new football stadium, a new convention center, a new central library/school, and a booby prize for Snapdragon, all paid for with Tax payer's money.

We'll spend decades trying to clean up the mess. (I always wonder why KPBS reporters never out the Mayors 10 biggest campaign contributors??)

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Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | January 31, 2012 at 1:53 p.m. ― 5 years ago

Just for a millisecond I thought it read "Sanders Falls." lol

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Avatar for user 'Satariel'

Satariel | January 31, 2012 at 3:20 p.m. ― 5 years ago

Wow. These losers are dumber than I thought.

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