Sources: OC DA Investigating Costa Mesa Police Union for Possible Crimes in Jim Righeimer DUI Set-Up Last Year
Remember that weird-ass story last year involving Costa Mesa councilmember Jim Righeimer, a private dick who called 911 saying Riggy was DUI-ing after emerging from Skosh Monahan's, and Costa Mesa PD summarily forcing Riggy out of his house and giving him sobriety tests even though all he had to drink was Diet Coke and had the receipts to prove it? All creepy--but were the actions against the polarizing politician criminal?
That's what the Orange County District Attorney's office is currently investigating, according to source who spoke to the Weekly on condition of anonymity.
They tell us that DA investigators are specifically targeting the Costa Mesa Police Association (CMPA), the cop union that has battled Righeimer's efforts to downsize Costa Mesa's public-employee numbers for years, often to acrimonious lengths. It was the union's law firm, after all, that employed the private investigator who tried to snitch on Righeimer as a supposed drunk--that is, before the story came out, and the CMPA dropped the law firm faster than Righeimer does with the nice talk to unions come negotiation time.
Asked for confirmation or denial, OC DA spokeswoman Susan Kang Schroeder would only say, "We don't comment on pending investigations." But it's known that the DA has been looking into the bizarre case since last summer, one way or another. This time around, said sources tell the Weekly that investigators have already visited CMPA offices, asking to look at their books to see if there was any collusion between the union, the law firm, and the private eye on the day Righeimer was subjected to the terrors of the police state (the union and Costa Mesa police officers in general have always denied any knowledge of a conspiracy, and the private investigator himself accepted all responsibility, although he says it wasn't a DUI set-up but a chick set-up designed to get Riggy's colleague, Gary Monahan. Um, okay...). And said sources also say that Republican activists are pushing for OC DA Tony Rackauckas to file kidnapping and fraud charges against those that targeted Righeimer--fraud, for the obvious reasons, and kidnapping under God-knows-what circumstances.
Never a dull day in Costa Mexico! Thank God we only work here, and not drink or live here, although we do miss the beach bunnies of Orange Coast College....
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter Our daily newsletter delivers quick clicks to keep you in the know
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Orange County, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.