Wednesday, March 23, 2011 at 1:42 p.m.
A veteran Orange County Sheriff's Department (OCSD) deputy--the brother of a California state assemblyman from Costa Mesa--is suing his department and employees' union for deceitful conduct and working in "collusion" to sabotage fair promotion practices.
In his March 16 complaint against the OCSD and the Association of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs (AOCDS), Erik Mansoor claims officials failed to promote custody-operations division deputies based on seniority from a "promotion list," in effect violating a 2008 settlement between the union and sheriff's department management.
"OCSD has utterly failed to adhere to its material promises in the agreement by, among other things, failing and refusing to promote and transfer to the custody operations division . . . [qualified deputies] including [me], according to the order on the promotion list," Mansoor alleges in his suit.
He said that department officials have used a "specious allegation" to thwart compliance: There have been no empty positions available for promotion.
Yet, according to Mansoor, the department skipped over more senior deputies and gave empty slots to less experienced officers. He says this practice should have been genuinely opposed by union officials, but it was not. In fact, AOCDS management was, he says, "actively complicit in the wrongdoing."
Neither Sheriff Sandra Hutchens' department nor AOCDS have filed responses to the lawsuit.
Lake Forest attorney Andrea S. Loveless, who represents Mansoor and 10 other deputies in the same plight, said, "They have a really good case. It's a shame what the department did to them."
Mansoor seeks a jury trial and damages--including retirement credits--for the "lost wages" and "great and severe mental and emotional distress" he claims he has suffered.
Mansoor's brother Allan Mansoor is a former jail deputy himself and Republican mayor of Costa Mesa. He now serves as a freshman in the state Assembly.
--R. Scott Moxley / OC Weekly