Sandra Emerson, Staff Writer
Posted: 04/05/2011 10:08:35 PM PDT
UPLAND – Legal concerns are keeping the City Council from publicly reacting to the Upland police report describing an altercation between City Manager Robb Quincey and an ex-fiancee.
Council members said they have not been at liberty to discuss Quincey’s employment with the city since they placed him on paid leave of absence on Jan. 4.
On Tuesday, they said they could not comment on the police report for fear of litigation.
“If we misspeak on the facts of the issue and are incorrect or say something that is damaging to someone personally, then the city would be looking at a very expensive lawsuit,” Councilman Ken Willis said.
“We really are trying to do this in such a way as not to provoke legal action, which will financially hurt the city.”
Quincey and his attorney, Michael Zwieback, declined to comment Tuesday.
The police report, which was taken July 27, 2008, describes an altercation Quincey had with an ex-fiancee. Quincey allegedly kicked and punched her car after he demanded that she marry him.
Later that evening, he sent her three text messages, which she found to be threatening, according to the report.
The Daily Bulletin obtained a copy of the report on Monday.
The report, classified as “Annoying/Harassing Phone communications,” later led to an accusation by one of the investigating officers, Sgt. John Moore, that he was passed over for promotion because he had investigated the incident.
Quincey settled Moore’s claim in January 2010.
Moore was promoted to lieutenant as part of the settlement and Quincey authorized a $25,000 payment to be made to a police union attorney.
Willis said he had not read the police report before Tuesday, but was relying upon legal counsel to verbally describe the contents of the report during closed session meetings.
“I do know it’s an issue that’s still under investigation by an outside agency,” Willis said. “The City Council specifically elected not to get in a position where the city was investigating this, for purposes of transparency and credibility. We wanted other agencies to do that. Agencies we have no control over.”
Willis said the council was not made aware of the incident when it happened.
“It was literally some years later,” he said.
Upland Police Chief Steve Adams gave the report to the FBI last year as part of an investigation into city corruption.
Adams has been out on medical leave since Dec. 2.
On Jan. 31, Adams said in a voicemail message that the decision on how to handle the incident involving Quincey was a tough one.
“I knew that no matter what we did I’d be criticized for it, for whatever direction we took on that, so with that in mind I just tried to make sure we did what was fair and something we do in every other similar situation, to be above reproach to the community and to the department,” he said.
Councilman Gino Filippi said he too had not seen the report until Tuesday.
“The published police report raises the issues with which the council is most concerned about, both now and in the future,” he said. “We are investigating.”
The woman’s neighbor, Mike Welch, was surprised nothing came of the report.
Welch was at the woman’s home when Moore and Detective Craig Sipple were investigating.
Welch made the call to police.
“She called me after it happened, after I got home. I’m the one who called 9-1-1,” he said. “She didn’t want me to because of who he is and he was best friends with Steve (Adams), so nothing would ever happen, they would just retaliate against her.”
Welch said the woman expressed her concerns to the police.
“I think Sgt. Moore, he just kept telling her, `I have taken the oath to protect and serve. I don’t care who did it, they’re going to pay for it,’ and nothing ever happened,” Welch said.
The woman eventually moved, and Welch said he has not spoken to her since.
“I was just surprised I never heard anything,” he said. “Nothing ever came from it.”
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