Sheriff’s spokesman Bryn in Parkinson’s corner
March 22, 2009
By DANIEL BLACKBURN
Sheriff Pat Hedges won’t endorse a successor just yet, but his department spokesman isn’t bashful about trumpeting his choice. Rob Bryn wrote and distributed a press release last week announcing the candidacy of Ian Parkinson, a captain in the San Luis Obispo Police Department. Hedges said recently he will not run for a third term.
Bryn, who describes himself as “the official spokesman for the Sheriff’s Department,” said he sent the e-mail announcement late at night from his home computer, and testily defended his actions.
“I’m not going to be [Parkinson’s] press secretary nor am I going to be his campaign manager. What I do off duty is my own business, and it’s nobody’s business who I do, or do not, support in a political situation.” Bryn said of the upcoming campaign, “We will be paying a consultant, but until then I will be doing what I can to help out. I’ve known the guy for 25 years.”
Bryn then admonished a reporter: “You need to report this appropriately, because I know how you write. If you want to get into this, I’ll be happy to get into it with you. And we can become the biggest enemies in the United States. I’ll be happy to do that. If you want to attack me for this, fine.”
Hedges, said Bryn, “has made it very clear” that he will refrain from endorsing any candidate “until at least after the filing deadline.” That will be in March 2010.
As a member of the county’s GOP Central Committee, Bryn said he’s helped countless candidates with press releases over the years, “and always on my own time, and from private computers.”
Then he said, “If this is a political discussion, then I’ll have to cut it off right here, because I don’t have political discussions on a government phone.”
Former Third District Supervisor Jerry Lenthall and sheriff’s Sgt. Dale Strobridge, president of the county Deputy Sheriffs Association, are said to be considering a run for the post.