Fact Checking 

To set the record straight on erroneous or false information being circulated in social media, you can get the facts here. For anything still unclear, please feel free to email info@alexvillanueva.org and we will quickly clear up any questions on this page forum. Thanks for visiting!

 


Claim #1

"On or about 2004, he wrote a letter to all departmental executives, captain and above telling them that they were all corrupt and one day he would be sheriff. 98% of the executives didn’t even know who the hell he was or where he worked."
"OG", Witness LA Commentor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is a copy of the text of the actual memo, written in December of 2004 to address the beginning of the Department's "pay to play" scandal.  This was Paul Tanaka's first efforts at gaming promotional systems, starting with the 2003 Lieutenant examination.  Too bad the Department chose to ignore the problem at its inception, but it was not for lack of warning:

C O U N T Y   O F   L O S   A N G E L E S

SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT

"A Tradition of Service"

OFFICE CORRESPONDENCE

DATE: December 17, 2004

 

FROM:    ALEX VILLANUEVA, SERGEANT

                CARSON STATION

TO:          DIVISION CHIEFS AND COMMANDERS  

 

SUBJECT:       AN OPEN LETTER

                                               

The purpose of this memorandum is to dispel any rumors and inform you of my intentions regarding my future with our Department.  As you all well know, I have been exhausting all administrative remedies to address my denial of promotion stemming from the 2003 Lieutenant Examination, and now I have read the most recent Intent to Promote teletype for lieutenants.  As expected, I was not included on this list for reasons you know in more detail than I do, as I can only speculate what transpires behind closed doors.

Up to this point in time my experience, education, leadership, and communication skills have always served me well.  During my ten years experience with the United States military I was privileged to have been promoted six times to positions of higher rank and responsibility.  Perhaps this experience has burnished in me an expectancy of merit based promotions, and this expectancy was unrealistically carried over to our Department. 

From what I have come to understand regarding ethical administrative behavior, I find no legal or moral justification for the activities you have engaged in over the course of the last year and a half.  From rewriting oral interview scoring standards in order to deliberately suppress exam scores, providing secret exam preparation classes for the privileged few, and gaming the appeals process in order to gerrymander the candidate pool, you have compromised your integrity and that of the Department’s. 

Perhaps you have succumbed to a moral inversion, wherein you believe your actions and those of your peers are in the best interest of the Department and supported by civil service rules.  Your decision making is a result of group-think and the feeling of infallibility, making it difficult for you to see beyond your own career success.  I want to encourage each and every one of you to take a moment and engage in critical reflexivity, the ability to see the organization through someone else’s experience.

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My organizational experience has told me that I do not count, no matter what my qualifications may be, how hard I work, or how many bright ideas I possess.  I do not get “invited” to apply to jobs, nor are jobs created exclusively for me.  There is no captain or higher pushing aside more qualified individuals in order to make room for me, or steering me in the “right” direction.  There is no rater who overlooks my shortcomings and gives me undeserved outstanding evaluations or 100 AP’s.  My queries are addressed with attorneys and mind-numbing technical rationality. 

Promoting dozens of individuals to the rank of lieutenant is a wonderful opportunity to assert organizational values such as meritocracy, equality, and diversity, while at the same time promoting efficiency and effectiveness, and boosting the moral of the Department.  Instead you deliberately chose the values of cronyism, nepotism, and tokenism.  These have been the same values you have been espousing with just about every promotional process within our ranks.  This negatively impacts public safety by promoting corruption and incompetence.

I am curious to know just how much public resources you will squander as you attempt to defend the indefensible.  Deliberately attempting to suppress or retard the upward mobility of Latinos on our Department is illegal, immoral, and politically incomprehensible.  Each and every one of you contributes to this unfolding tragedy by your actions or inactions.  I will say this: as a Latino, I do not seek special favors, accommodations, or any sort of “affirmative action” in order to receive a promotion.  I expect to be promoted because there is a clearly identified universal standard  based on bonafide occupational qualifications, not golf handicaps or quotas.

It has been painful watching you lie, obfuscate, conceal, mislead, or otherwise attempt to hide the truth.  I want to encourage you to come to grips with the damage you inflict on our institution, and do what’s right.  In an interesting parallel to our Department, NASA swore after the Challenger tragedy that it should never happen again, then along came Columbia.  After spending over $30 million addressing Bouman, it is truly frightening to behold how little has been learned.  

Leadership is defined by action, not position, and I plan to act decisively to assert my rights, not only as an employee, but as a citizen and proud resident of this County. Your legacy and the future of equality and equal opportunity in Los Angeles County are at a crossroads.  I hope you make the right choices for the benefit of the County and the Department, and I must remind you that it is 2004, not 1964.  Just as in Martin Luther King’s day, I am confident of the supremacy of a simple idea - all men are created equal.

 

AV:av

 

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