Thursday, July 1, 2010 at 6:28 p.m.
Orange County Register investigative reporter Tony Saavedra provided the day's most outrageous news.
And it has to do with the disturbing notion that crime actually pays.
Especially if you've been a crooked sheriff.
According to Saavedra's review of Orange County pension records, Mike Carona--who was sentenced in 2009 to 5.5 years in federal prison for corruption--still collects a taxpayer-funded $18,000-a-month paycheck--and will do so for the rest of his life.
The Orange County Employees Retirement System (OCERS) refused to open its database to public consumption until forced by Saavedra and the Register, which took the OCERS to court. Last month, Superior Court Judge Luis Rodriguez sided with the paper, noting that public access to the taxpayer-funded pensions is necessary "to expose corruption, incompetence, inefficiency, prejudice and favoritism."
We offer energetic applause to both Judge Rodriguez and the Reg.
Carona is free pending an appeal of his conviction.
--R. Scott Moxley / OC Weekly