Jackie Lacey and Steve Cooley Face a Federal Injunction and Union Bustion Charges in Federal Court

July 22, 2012

Jackie Lacey and Steve Cooley will face union busting charges in December

Jackie Lacey and Steve Cooley stave off union busting and perjury allegations until December 4th.  One day after Jackie Lacey is sworn in to office she prepares for trial.  Steve Cooley makes his way to federal court for union busting over the past decade.  (Read first amended complaint here)   Jackie Lacey testified in an Employee Relations Commission hearing, under oath, that she warned well respected Deputy DA Rob Dver to stay away from the union or it would be bad for his career.  (Jackie Lacey transcript #1) (Jackie Lacey transcript #2) Rob Dver testified that elected District Attorney Steve Cooley told him to stay away from the union and was then transferred to a lesser assignment. (Rob Dver-transcript)  Jackie Lacey later perjured herself when she recanted her testimony claiming the “twinkie defense”.  (Lacey perjury transcript) She said her original testimony, under oath, in front of the Employee Relations Commission was inaccurate because she had “low blood sugar” and was “obviously confused.”  Her poor eating habits were her excuse when she realized the impact of her statements about Steve Cooley and his anti-union behavior.  Jones Day will likely argue that Lacey and Cooley were merely warning their friend not to work with Steve Ipsen, an accomplished trial attorney with an outstanding trial record, and the prosecutors union.  Unfortunately, this violates the United States Constitution under the 1st Amendment.  Lacey and Cooley are at the helm of turmoil that has plagued the DAs office for the past 10 years.  They are accused of violating the union members’ rights of free speech and rights of association under the federal constitution.


Will the board of Supervisors ever pay up for Steve Cooley’s and Friends Union Busting?

January 26, 2012

Back in October Marc Debbaudt and the Association of Deputy District Attorneys were awarded $450,000 and $157,000 respectively in damages to pay for attorneys fees and compensation for harming the ADDA and Debbaudt’s  career when Steve Cooley settled those two portions of the federal law suit for union busting.  Cooley is represented by Jones Day and has racked up millions in dollars in attorneys fees at the expense of the tax payers.  Cooley  has refused to settle the portion of the law suit with regards to the former ADDA President Steve Ipsen and current ADDA President Hyatt Seligman.  Clearly the cases brought about by Debbeaut and the ADDA were so egregious that even Jones Day couldn’t defend Cooley’s shenanigans.  

The Board of Supervisors is said to have approved payment to the ADDA and union member Marc Debbeaut for damages. But, no one is exactly sure what happened in this closed session (aka. secret) meeting.

Inside sources reveal that the Board of Supervisors approved payment for the damages, but the ADDA and Marc Debbaudt have yet to receive payment.  The trial for Steve Ipsen and Hyatt Seligman was supposed to begin this month, but postponed until June.  If the Board of Supervisors were planning on delaying payment to see if Ipsen and Seligman won their trials, they could refuse to pay in the event Ipsen and Seligman lost.  That would send Debbaudt back to court.  Will the Board of Supervisors delay payment to the ADDA and Marc Debbaudt for six more months?  That has yet to be determined.


L.A. County settles part of suit alleging anti-union conduct

October 6, 2011
Steve Cooley’s Anti-Union Conduct
By Jack Leonard, Los Angeles Times
October 5, 2011
 
Los Angeles County will pay $575,000 to settle part of a federal law suit claiming that Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley and his managers waged an anti-union campaign, according to a settlement agreement filed in court. The settlement, which must be approved by the Board of Supervisors, would pay $125,000 to the prosecutors’ union and $450,000 to Deputy Dist. Atty. Marc Debbaudt, who a county employment commission found was transferred in retaliation for his union activity. In addition, a preliminary federal injunction ordering Cooley and other county officials not to discipline or discriminate against prosecutors for belonging to the union would remain in effect for the rest of Cooley’s tenure as D.A. Cooley has announced he will retire next year at the end of his third term.Matthew Monforton, an attorney representing the Assn. of Deputy District Attorneys, hailed the settlement as a victory for the union and described Cooley’s conduct as “outrageous and illegal.”Earlier this year, the county’s Employee Relations Commission upheld the findings of a hearing officer who concluded that veteran prosecutors were transferred to less desirable assignments as a result of their union work. Debbaudt, who joined the office in 1986, was sent from handling adult felony cases in Pasadena to working on juvenile matters in Pomona and then Sylmar, assignments usually given to less experienced attorneys. The hearing officer found that Cooley gave explanations that “were false and clearly pretexts” for conducting a “deliberate and thinly disguised campaign” aimed at destroying the union.Debbaudt and Cooley declined to comment on the settlement.Attorney Brian Hershman, a partner at the law firm Jones Day who represents the county, disputed the commission’s findings and said no prosecutors were retaliated against.He said the county settled the case to end what had become a distraction to the mission of the district attorney’s office. “We wanted to put that dispute behind us,” he said.Claims by two other prosecutors who are part of the lawsuit are scheduled for trial next month, Hershman said.

jack.leonard@latimes.com


Betty Pleasant Updates on Union Busting – Jackie Lacey and Steve Cooley

September 29, 2011
Betty Pleasant Updates Us on the LA Union Busting Crusade of Jackie Lacey and Steve Cooley

Betty Pleasant Updates Us on the LA Union Busting Crusade of Jackie Lacey and Steve Cooley

THE SOULVINE: COST OF UNION BUSTING
By BETTY PLEASANT, Contributing Editor

Story Created: Sep 28, 2011 at 7:09 PM PDT

As anticipated, the lawsuit against District Attorney Steve Cooley and his joined-at-the-hip cohort, Jacquelyn Lacey, for their union busting campaign to thwart the organizing of their subordinate deputies in the District Attorney’s office, is costing us taxpayers a fortune.

 A portion of the lawsuit, which was filed in federal court on April 5, 2010 by four individual deputy D.A.s and the Association of Deputy District Attorneys, was settled last week. According to the “Memorandum of Understanding Re: Settlement” dated Sept. 19, the county will pay the ADDA $125,000 for Cooley’s and Lacey’s wrongdoings, and will pay Dep. D.A. Marc Debbaudt $440,000 for the pain and suffering Cooley/Lacey caused him. And that’s just one plaintiff; there are three more plaintiffs involved now in settlement negotiations over the unlawful actions of Cooley/Lacey.

Oh, and you know that face-slapping preliminary injunction Judge Otis Wright issued on March 2, 2010 against Cooley for his flagrant anti-union actions? Well, last week’s settlement stipulates that the injunction be declared permanent and in full effect for as long as Cooley is the D.A. — “including both his current term and any subsequent terms.”

But wait. That’s not all. We know that whenever private citizens sue a government entity, we, the taxpayers, have to pay the price. When this matter came up, I decried the fact that the tax-supported county counsel was defending Cooley/Lacey against this suit. I felt, and still feel, that the Cooley/Lacey crimes are outside the realm of prosecutorial immunity and that — like Rep. Laura Richardson and other alleged law-breaking federal officials — these two should pay for their own defense. The on-the-payroll county counsel started working on the Cooley/Lacey defense, but then passed it off to the big time downtown law firm of Jones Day, which is expected to earn big time fees for representing these two miscreants. So, at a time when government coffers are supposed to be at an all-time low, we taxpayers must pay for the settlements and/or awards to five plaintiffs, the salary of the county counsel and the fees for Jones Day — all because Cooley didn’t want his deputies to form a union.

You know what else Cooley did? He did what he always does: He manipulated the justice system to meet his own ends. He engineered a stipulation to dismiss Lacey from the lawsuit, leaving only himself to blame. Why did he do that? It’s obvious. He desperately wants Lacey to succeed him as D.A. and he wanted the taint of this suit removed from her while she’s running for his office. Ah-h-h, he’s so sweet. He’s so helpful to her. That’s why Lacey loves him so and why she says, “working for this man makes my heart glow.”

There is nothing Cooley won’t do to get Lacey elected, up to and including bad-mouthing his old friend and staunch supporter City Attorney Carmen Trutunich and calling in all of his Republican markers so Lacey can have plenty of money to run on. Well, it’s a long time until election day and this thing can get very ugly, particularly in the Black community where the effect of the current Cooley/Lacey regime in the D.A.’s office has been onerous.