Monday, October 26, 2009

No charges over debacle at the health care reform debate

The LA County District Attorney's Office announced last week that it will not file criminal charges against Charles Cox for his role at the August 27 health care reform debate. Citing a California Supreme Court decision on freedom of speech at public meetings, the DA's Office determined that Cox's disruptive actions did not warrant criminal charges.

"It is clear that many in the room were disturbed by the acts of Mr. Cox, but it is unlikely that ... can be proved beyond a reasonable doubt [in court]," according to a charge evaluation worksheet from the DA's Office.

Two weeks ago, the DA's Office declined to file criminal charges against organizer Rudy Mann, who was cited for battery at the debate upon the request of Cox. Cox claimed to Claremont police that he was assaulted by Mann at the meeting.

Tomorrow night, the city council will hear a full report from Claremont Police Chief Paul Cooper about the incident and the police's response. Residents have complained over the Police Department's lack of presence at the meeting and perceived unfair treatment by investigating officers.

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