The LA Times and Orange County Register have reported on this extensively over the last few days. Sean Mill briefly put up a post on the topic a few days ago. We then decied to pull down our coverage until we gathered additional information and perspective.
The OCRegister’s Tony Saavedra reported on April 30th that Acting Sheriff Jack Anderson has launced an internal investiation as to whether policies may have been violated in the investigation of the suicide death of the son of two OC Sheriff department Lieutenants. This comes in addition to another investigation by the District Attorney.
Saavedra quotes Sheriff Anderson stating that his only role in being on the scene was to “comfort two friends.” The suicide occurred while former Sheriff Carona was in charge of the department and Galisky was Undersheriff. Questions have come up regarding the presence of so much department brass at the home while the investigation was in process. It appears from reports in the OC Register and LA Times that a number of important procedures may not have been followed at the scene.
I do not question the fact that most of the department leadership showed up to comfort their co-workers. Law enforcement is a very close family and I would expect nothing less than this level of support. I looks like Sheriff Anderson, and the DA, are trying to get to the bottom of how procedures may have broken down.
What I don’t get is how with so much of the command staff on scene, why these questions were not asked at the time.
I certainly do not think anyone deliberately influenced the investigation of a tragic death. But given the hits the department has taken for things that occurred on Carona’s watch, the attention seems warranted.