Former Mono Sheriff comments on memo

monocountyjailSparked by the public release of information on the Deputy Jon Madrid arbitration, a number of former deputies and others have talked about a memo that was issued by former Sheriff Rick Scholl. Officers have described the memo as “discouraging enforcement efforts.” Many of them felt that they were not supposed to be proactive. Some said they were told not to write tickets. Former Sheriff Scholl said he believes some officers misunderstood his directive and philosophies.

Former Mono County Sheriff’s Sergeant Craig Nelson said that the memo itself “was not particularly damaging. It was how it was implemented,” he said. He said it came across as ordering no more traffic stops. Nelson said he was ordered to do no bar checks at Tom’s Place and Rhino’s. He said administration did discourage the writing of tickets. Other sources said there was no clear directive on what officers were supposed to do. They said there was discouragement to engage in proactive enforcement from the top but opposite instructions from direct supervisors.

When asked about this, current Sheriff Ralph Obenberger said, “We are not aware of any memo that was directing employees to ‘not write tickets.'” Former Sergeant Nelson said Lieutenant Dave O’Hara made one officer sit in a chair for writing tickets. Sheriff Obenberger said he had never seen anyone “placed into a fixed post for writing too many tickets in my tenure with the agency, nor would I condone it,” he said.

Retired Sheriff Scholl did respond to our email and said he wanted to send us a copy of his directive distributed to the troops, but de said he no longer has that document. Scholl said he sent it to news media. We could not find such a document in our email files. Scholl indicated he was not discouraging deputies to enforce the law.


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22 Responses to Former Mono Sheriff comments on memo

  1. Hypocrisy March 11, 2013 at 2:16 pm #

    Former Sheriff Scholl said he sent the memo to you and you have no record of it? (This is an admission that there was such a memo) Current Sheriff Obenberger denies any such memo? (as the undersheriff at the time, you think he would know about this memo)

    Now this memo has suddenly disappeared? I would suggest the temporary Sheriff to whip that memo out to show the taxpayer’s. I am certain all memorandum’s are kept on file.

    • Desert Tortoise March 12, 2013 at 8:45 pm #

      I think you missed the point being made. One sheriff says there is a memo he wrote but does not have in his possession about officer conduct and the other sheriff says this particular memo does not tell deputies not to write tickets. He didn’t say the memo does not exist, he is saying the memo does not say what some allege.

      Whether that claim is true or not remains to be seen, but the current sheriff did not deny the previous sheriff wrote a memo.

  2. Ironic March 11, 2013 at 2:53 pm #

    Funny the ex sheriff admits there is a memo and promises to send it, but the temporary sheriff doesn’t know anything about it! Guess those two aren’t communicating very well! Lol

    I feel the ex sheriff getting thrown under the bus soon! Just a prediction… based on how these men have functioned in the past.

  3. Big Rick OBrien March 11, 2013 at 6:39 pm #

    I like that term, TEMPORARY ! if there’s any justice in the world…

    • Divided we fall March 12, 2013 at 6:38 am #

      All is impermanent.
      But those on the far-right refuse to budge – on anything.
      Hence a totally divided country when we should be coming together more than ever.

      • SierraFan March 12, 2013 at 11:06 am #


        When did this become politically divided? Off your rocker!!!!!

        • Nothing to do with politics? March 12, 2013 at 12:14 pm #

          Sierra –

          You’re just kidding, right?
          Today’s political division has nothing to do with it?
          You may be further gone than you even realize.
          ps – where did you get the name-calling (“off your rocker” – CNN or Fox News?)

          • SierraFan March 12, 2013 at 4:29 pm #

            What does the alleged actions of the Sd have to do with left or right? It has to do with right and wrong! It has to do with being treated fairly at work which I don’t remember to be a political side.

          • A simple yes or no will do March 12, 2013 at 6:29 pm #

            Answer me this Sierra, (and be completely honest)
            Do you believe Right is right?

        • Can't offer Extremists much March 12, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

          SierraFan is a prime example of the style of communication from those that embrace the Rush Limbaugh/ Extremist political persuasion.
          Insults. Name-calling. Utter childishness. As some age, some clearly drift backwards and start to resemble the traits of a 10-year old rather than take the inward journey to see what it is that they have not been able to let go of all their lives.
          Not much anyone can do to assist these foam-at-the-mouth types other than wait patiently until all of them simpley die off and are replaced with a more coherent and liberal-leaning group of young people – as is with each and every generation.

          • SierraFan March 12, 2013 at 4:34 pm #

            Can’t offer Extremists much,

            I think you’re drinking your own Koolaid! The judging you speak of seems to be exactly what you’re doing here. Going right for the bashing of a certain political party. Let’s keep on point here and back those that were wrongly treated which doesn’t have a political side.

          • Sounds like a duck... March 13, 2013 at 6:29 am #

            I often wonder if the angry SierraFan is one of those Teapartiers.

          • Big AL March 17, 2013 at 6:51 pm #

            I get what you’re saying DR. But this line blows it for your points.

            “SierraFan is a prime example of the style of communication from those that embrace the Rush Limbaugh/ Extremist political persuasion.”

        • Under-medicated March 12, 2013 at 5:22 pm #

          “Off your rocker!!!”

          Methinks somebody forgot to take his Xanax.
          Chill (if you can) SierraFan.
          It’s later than you think.

          • and speaking of "judgement" March 13, 2013 at 12:41 pm #

            Care to define the word “liberal” for us SierraFan?

      • Big AL March 17, 2013 at 6:47 pm #

        I agree we should find some common ground.

  4. Ironic March 11, 2013 at 10:05 pm #

    @ Big Rick

    Amen to that! I believe in truth, justice, and karma! It all comes eventually!

  5. In The Know March 12, 2013 at 12:11 am #

    I can tell you EVERY deputy who was working at the time, has seen this memo. Most of the officers at at MLPD have seen it as well, because it was passed around the station and everyone got a good laugh out of it.

    It is in the computer system in Bridgeport. Obenberger could have it in minutes since he now has Scholl’s computer!

    Nixon, Clinton and Obenberger. These guys always stick with the lie until the bitter end. There is a very good chance Obenberger even initialed it!

    I think that Madrid’s attorney could have a good time with Obenberger if she puts him under oath about what he has said publically about the memo, then subpoenas every Sheriff’s employee who was employed at the time, puts them under oath and have them talk about the memo and what was in it. Of course she could get a court order to have the hard drive seized and sent out for examination by an expert.

  6. In the know too... March 15, 2013 at 9:46 pm #

    I have read the memo, it was handed to me from the deputy in question… We were beside ourselves and yes MLPD did get a good laugh…
    Who orders a sworn peace officer to go against his/her oath taken when joining the family of law enforcement?
    What about extreme favoritism? ….writing OR revoking a citation to a high ranking official in the county… due to a possible loss or negative outlook towards the sheriff in upcoming elections…. huh??
    Let’s get down to the nitty gritty here… All who KNOW say “I” now is THE chance…

    Oh and one more thing, who remembers “this said deputy?” receiving an honorary award from his peers for such said acts of upholding the law and ‘traffic enforcement’ in particular, the year prior if we remember correctly… We believe it was called the “Road Dog Award”, presented to the deputy one dark lightening stormy Winter’s Eve, at a department function, Does that sound familiar to anyone else??????? Speak now or forever hold on to your peace..

    Deputy Madrid’s attorney should start prying… Madrid Knows the info, he and his attorney, need to seek out The people who also Know…

    • Craig Nelson March 16, 2013 at 10:39 am #

      To: “in the know”,
      As for the “Road Dog Award”. Myself and another deputy thought up the idea and I presented the original one. As far as I know only two were ever given out. It was paid for out of our pockets as were ALL the awards I handed out. NO MCSD money was EVER used for these awards. Just want to make that clear. It was not condoned by the Department and was a personal award given to the deputy who displayed exceptional law enforcement skill, integrity, and honor in everything that deputy did during the year. I’m proud to have given that award out and hope that those who received it are also.
      To my friends at MCSD (if I have any left after all this), stay strong, retain your honor, dignity, and integrity. It is your face you see in the mirror everyday, and you can’t fool that person…….

      Craig Nelson

      • Craig Nelson March 16, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

        Ooops, meant to reply to “in the know too”.
        Sorry about that.


      • In the know too March 17, 2013 at 12:22 pm #

        To: Sgt Craig Nelson

        It is Well understood what the Road Dog means, that is why it was mentioned that it was presented by his peers, not the administration….
        That being said, thank you for clarifying for all.
        Craig, you are an inspiration and will be missed by some and not by others that is the MCSD way. Your either in with the good ole boys or you aren’t, everyone takes a turn…
        Glad to see you got out of the circle jerk, good luck with all your endeavors.


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