OC's Scariest People 2004

Photo courtesy pool photographer
Michael Goulding/ The O.C. Register 1. JOSEPH G. CAVALLO

In the process of defending three accused gang rapists in the sensational Haidl case, lawyer Cavallo called the 16-year-old alleged victim a "slut"; "a nut"; "a pathological liar"; a wannabe "porn star"; "a tease—that's what she is!"; "a mess"; a "master manipulator"; "a compulsive liar"; "a cheat—that's what she is"; and a "callous" drug addict and alcoholic who trimmed her pubic hair, had "dishwater-colored hair" and once drank a beer in a car. To say Cavallo is vulgar and obsessive is an understatement. He bragged that at least three jurors—two women and one guy—fancied him. Gross. But to truly gauge Cavallo's slime factor, consider a question he asked a female prosecution witness: Is a pool stick bigger than "the average male penis?" MITIGATING FACTOR: Feels inadequate when passing pool halls.

2. BISHOP TOD D. BROWN

This year, Brown purchased a $1.2 million home in a gated Santa Ana community to replace his current $1.2 million pad and pushed forth plans to build the $100 million Christ Our Savior Cathedral up the street from South Coast Plaza. All the while, His Excellency refuses to settle sex-abuse cases, make public documents that sex-abuse survivors claim will show church complicity in their rapes, and meet sex-abuse survivors. Brown's most cardinal sin, however, was the January hiring of a New York-based PR firm for about $350,000 to spin his pedo-lies. MITIGATING FACTOR: Can—and does—absolve himself.


(Illustration by Bob Aul) 3. THE WESTMINSTER SCHOOL DISTRICT BOARD OF TRUSTEES

We keep explaining to anyone, including The New York Times, that OC's reactionary rep is outdated hooey. But then the Weird Sisters of the Westminster School Board come along. Roll call!Helena Rutkowski once said school libraries have too many books on Judaism. Judy Ahrens calls the teachers' union "Communist" and talks about how her "rewards are going to be great in Heaven" by defying state law. And Blossie Marquez-Woodcock—whose name we just really like to say—has offered varying accounts of phony educational degrees before finally admitting all her degrees are from now-defunct, unaccredited ministerial colleges. It all came to a delicious gestalt in March, when the Sisters refused to allow the district to pledge—as all other schools in the state had—against discriminating based on one's perceived gender. The decision nearly cost Westminster $40 million in state and federal aid, but Ahrens justified it on her website by claiming "the legislative gay agenda . . . shortens the lifetime for the average male to 34 years if he becomes gay . . . just to get that tiny 1 percent vote of the gays the liberals have legislated a shortened life span for your child by approving an alternative lifestyle that is poison." The same week, three Hayward men went on trial for shortening the life of Eddie Araujo, a transgendered teen beaten, strangled and left in a shallow grave. MITIGATING FACTOR: Woodcock. Heh, heh.

4. KOBE BRYANT

From a July 6, 2003, police interview Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant

gave to Vail, Colorado, police the night he allegedly raped a 19-year-old

 
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