DA Vern Pierson and Auditor Joe Harn Subpoenaed! - Editorial
Disclosure: the writer of this story is a party to this action.
In what was a rough week for DA Vern Pierson, on the same day that he lost his high profile case against Supervisor Ray Nutting, he was served a subpoena to appear in a case against political consultant Dan Dellinger and media expert Cris Alarcon.
He is called to answer accusations by the defense that he is using the power of his office to press a political agenda unrelated to justice. This is not a new accusation as he is accused of the same thing in the high-profile loss against Nutting.
Even the Sacramento Bee usually hostile to the popular, but conservative, Supervisor Ray Nutting had a monumental change of opinion after observing the trail against Nutting. Before the trail started, the Bee editorialized that Nutting should step-down. After watching the trial proceedings, up until the jury went into deliberations, the Bee then changed its opinion and editorialized that the trial was a political sideshow that should never have been brought to court.
Now he faces another loss in a case that many believe is without grounds and should also have never have been brought to court. It seems that the loss against Nutting has set the DA on his heels as he now wants to postpone the trial scheduled for this week, until after the June election. Although the DA’s office has been working on the case for about two years, they now suddenly claim they need more time to find more evidence.
Additionally, the DA is trying to quash the subpoena claiming he has attorney-client privilege. This is not the first time he has claimed the privilege. When an unrelated private citizen tried to get information about the cost of the Nutting trial, Pierson responded that he did not have to give that information due to his attorney-client privilege. It is unclear if he thinks the privilege applies as a blanket defense to anything he does.
Why is he hiding from the stand where he would have to take an oath to tell the truth in the Dellinger case? We can only speculate that he does not want to be in a position that he is the one that has to tell the truth.
As for Auditor Joe Harn, he is going to have to testify and explain how he first objected to the contract payment to Dan Dellinger Consulting, then gave specific directions on how to perfect the contract in his opinion, then issued payment only to later object to the payment. It seems Joe wants to have his lunch and to eat his lunch.
Dellinger intends to serve it to him HOT! Just like we do at our county jail.
This comes at a bad time for Joe Harn as he is in a tight race to keep his office. He has recently gone from the tax-saver to the central figure in creating a hostile work environment for county employees, agencies that work with the Auditor’s office, and vendors that reportedly charge extra to the county due to the fact they have to work with Harn and he always pays months late.
If this weren't enough, he is also being accused of being a serial sexual harasser at the county and citizens are asking for the cost of settlements caused by Harn. Understanding the ‘confidentiality’ issue of these harassment lawsuits, they are asking for the ‘aggregate’ cost rather than individual case’s costs.
What will Joe have to say on the witness stand? Will the DA have the courage of his convictions and take the stand to answer questions under oath? Will the DA succeed in another delay in a trail that has dragged on for too long? Will this delay be because of political reasons or to protect himself from exposure?
The trial is scheduled to start on the 20th. When it will actually start and will the DA avoid the witness stand, are questions that only time can tell. But in time, so shall we.