Posted by Administrator3 at 15 January 2010

In what has been an ongoing discussion on this blog about the incompetence and unethical practices of San Bernardino County Human Resources Director Andrew Lamberto and County Counsel Ruth Stringer, we now find out just how unscrupulous both are.  Added into the mix this time is the reported collusion with said scoundrels by Board of Supervisors Chairman Gary Ovitt and his Chief of Staff, Mark Kirk, Supervisor Paul Biane and others, and we can only conclude that the level of corruption in the upper echelons of county government has reached a new high.

Last August, at the insistence of Third District Supervisor Neil Derry, Lamberto initiated an investigation into allegations of hostile work environment by District Attorney Michael Ramos aimed at investigative technician Cheryl Ristow.  Ristow admitted a previous 17-month sexual affair with Ramos, who had told her during the affair how he had fallen in love with her and claimed he was divorcing his wife, Gretchen. However, once Ristow realized that Ramos was lying about his feelings for her and his status with his wife, Ristow ended the relationship.

Ramos continued to pursue Ristow, even to the point that when Ristow was facing possible breast cancer surgery, Ramos asked to have one more encounter with her before her breast might be damaged or removed during the surgery.  Ramos continued to pursue Ristow as will be shown in an updated article tomorrow.  Ristow has said from the beginning all she ever wanted out of this is for Ramos to admit the affair and apologize for lying to and about her.   It seems Ramos cannot tell the truth.  Despite that fact and although the investigators seem to have ignored the evidence, tomorrow we will provide evidence in Ramos’ own handwriting to show what he has done.

For Ristow the affair simply became a bad memory of a mistake she made and put behind her until a newspaper article appeared this past May, listing Ristow as one of the many women Mike Ramos had bedded in his never-ending pursuit to satisfy his sexual deviance.  Ristow was contacted in an act of intimidation by District Attorney staff member Marnie Williams, who warned  her not to discuss the issue because it could “tank” the Erwin-Postmus investigation, and Ramos himself, who told her to deny the relationship ever took place.

Ristow would not deny her relationship with Ramos and quickly found herself the victim of a hostile work environment, being targeted and disciplined for trivial matters after being considered an excellent employee for seven years.  Ristow contacted Supervisor Neil Derry’s office, and the supervisor, along with his chief of staff George Watson and Andrew Lamberto, met with Ristow in her home last August.

After much prodding the Board of Supervisors agreed to fund an investigation into the allegations against Mike Ramos.  Due to the number of women Ramos bedded and the many allegations against him, in what is almost an unheard of move, an outside law firm was contracted for $75,000 to conduct an extensive investigation into the allegations. Rumors surfaced that the investigation expanded and the board agreed to add another $65,000 to continue the investigation.

Ramos’ response to this situation was to lie and deny.   But more importantly, he threatened members of the Board of Supervisors, especially Chairman Gary Ovitt and his chief of staff Mark Kirk, Supervisor Paul Biane and his chief of staff Matt Brown, and others with the re-opening of the already-concluded criminal investigation into the 1200-acre Rancho Cucamonga project and the Colonies Settlement.  To assure the board he meant business, he had all board members and many of their staff members subpoenaed before the Grand Jury for testimony and intimidation.

More recently, Ramos found a new ploy with which to embarrass, threaten and intimidate board staff.   Much to our surprise, we discover that there is a disparate application of justice in our county, depending not on the offense, but on the willingness of the offender to protect the District Attorney from public humiliation.  It seems that 700 violations, perjury and fraud are serious felonies when a district attorney wants to take out a political foe but simple Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) referrals when those who commit the same offenses have a potentially career-ending report in their hands that they can choose to release and show the district attorney for the liar he is or hide from the public and protect the lascivious sexual predator from public scrutiny.

iePolitics has learned through many sources that Ramos has terminated numerous on-going investigations against high-ranking public officials and instead opted to submit referrals to the FPPC.  This is especially suspect as the charges are as serious or more serious than those he has filed against Bill Postmus and Jim Erwin and it has been done in the past ten days once it was learned that the report was about to be turned over to the Chairman’s office.  The timing of the case closures and the referral of these cases, along the release of a report with a hole in it big enough to drive a battle carrier through, raises serious questions.  Was this a quid pro quo?

The ploys seemed to have worked.  Last October Andrew Lamberto told Ristow that she could not return to work in the District Attorney’s office because he didn’t want her to work in a hostile work environment.  Today he met with her to give her a memo, prepared in part by his cohort in crime, Ruth Stringer, stating there is no hostile work environment.  Months ago, investigators told Ristow that she was credible.  She provided numerous pieces of evidence to prove she was telling the truth and Ramos was lying.  Today that same memo suggests there is no basis to her claims.

To read entire story, click here.