War of the Hedges

January 21, 2009


San Luis Obispo County Sheriff deputies responded Monday to a domestic disturbance call at the North County home of Sheriff Pat Hedges and his wife, Sandy Oneal-Hedges, according to the sheriff’s log.

Sandy Oneal-Hedges called 911 at 5:36 p.m. to report her husband was screaming at her and asked for assistance, said Undersheriff Steve Bolts.

“A sergeant and a beat car went out to the house and cleared it without a report,” Bolts added. “Deputies determine if there is a violation of the law.”

Oneal-Hedges is president of the D.R.E.A.M. for Kids Foundation, an organization that “strives to provide a safe and loving environment for foster children and their families,” according to its Web site.

Oneal-Hedges said the incident “wasn’t anything. It was handled perfectly and resolved. I didn’t want it to escalate. We needed to stop. It did not get physical.”


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Member Opinions:

By: tarandfeatherthejerk on 6/14/09

For the love of your country, read the constitution.

Pat Hedges is in need of tarring and feathering and run out of the country. He took an oath to uphold the Constitution and broke it.

Allowing the Constitutionally Criminal FBI to come into his town and arrest Charlie Lynch for LEGAL ACTIVITY was a total disreguard for the Constitution which I am sure Hedges is to ignorant to read or comprehend.

Pat's wife shoulda grabbed his gun and done the whole country a favor.

Charlie Lynch just got sentenced to a year in prison.

Pat Hedges and Judge George Wu need to spend a year at the bottom of a lake attached to a nice large rock. Better stay in your own states guys where you have your buddies to protect you because your disregusrd for the Constitution qualifies you to not be safe in mine.

By: NorthCountyGuy on 1/31/09

Concerning the tremendous amount of psychological trauma done to their victims, is there a dime's worth of difference between a Domestic Violence Abuser, a Rapist or a Terrorist? Are the Domestic Violence Abusers hiding behind guns and badges in SLO County getting a power charge from preying on women, children, seniors and the handicapped? Are they yellow-bellied cowards with E.D.?

By: GrayGranny on 1/29/09

Any of this sound familiar?

Partial definition of domestic violence per Wikipedia … Domestic violence occurs when a family member or partner attempts to physically or psychologically dominate another. Domestic violence has many forms including emotional abuse and intimidation. Although emotional and psychological abuse are not criminal behaviors, they are forms of abuse and can lead to criminal violence.

If you or your family have been touched by domestic violence, you know screaming is the foundation before the physical violence erupts. It is appalling that our community has let our "sheriff" hide behind his badge and his subordinates are condoning his behavior.

By: paperboy on 1/26/09

I've known Pat Hedges for many years and have some trouble even imagining him yelling at all, he is usually such a calm and low-key person I sometimes wonder if he even has a pulse.

However, no one is immune to losing his or her temper, so I have no doubt that he needed to be calmed down at the least.

As for no report, that is simply not true. The deputies may not have written a crime report but they must document every contact with the public through a field interview or incident report, even if no action was taken. This is for liability reasons if nothing else. The fact that it was in the media logs indicates some kind of report had to have been written.

Those field interviews and incident reports should absolutely be public information.

Not sure how much detail they would have, but the sheriff's office CANNOT suppress them from the media. A formal public records act request should be filed.

Domestic violence is indeed a horrible crime that too often goes without punishment. Far too many women and men stay in a bad relationship and often suffer deep and long lasting consequences for it.

Know that there is help available through the 211 service. Your taxes pay for it, so use it.

As for the sheriff, I would agree that he needs to go. He's been a good sheriff overall, but that job would corrupt anyone given enough time in it and I think Pat has just about used up his. I don't believe he will run for re-election in 2010 and I don't think he should.

By: Cindy on 1/26/09

Just for the record. There was no physical domestic violence in my home. Some of you seem confused. This is a complicated story and is best handled in private right now.

Thanks for your concern.

By: Booty_Juice on 1/25/09

Here come the usual toothless north county morlocks yammering on and refering to wife beating as "DV". Next they'll be talking about rape in terms like "speed dating" or "surprise sex".

By: mcdonald on 1/25/09

If the person in Cindy's house was a renter and not an intimate partner then the DV laws don't apply in the legal sense. Was there physical violence? Cindy are you a political activist in Atascadero (sort of to the left)? I'm just curious, I might have some information for you.

By: Nancy on 1/25/09

I think people should know what happened in your neighborhood. It could happen to any of us woman in Atascadero who have to take in a renter. Have the story from J.

By: Cindy on 1/25/09


I'm sure this is the same story. It's my story and I believe Nancy is my neighbor although several people know all the sorted details. It's in competent legal hands and this isn't the time or place. Something really went south on this occasion (actually north to Oregon). The actions taken in my home isn't what typically happens in these cases. It's not just a question of what happened but why it happened? This is for a jury and not public consumption right now. DV laws usually work, it's (some of) the people who apply the laws and assess circumstances who are lacking in common sense.

By: Jordan on 1/25/09


Did you hit your husband and he called the cops on you? What a pussy.

By: mcdonald on 1/25/09

Nancy there is a similar story floating around in certain legal circles down in SLO about an incident in Atascadero where a woman was actually caused to be locked out of her own home by the APD while the guilty party was allowed to plunder the residence and then flee the state. Is this the same story, are you the person?

By: Nancy on 1/25/09

DV is certainly a concern that needs to be addressed. Particularly when the police are called and it isn't handled properly or the innocent party ends up on the loosing end. I recently heard of an outrageous situation that occurred in Atascadero. I have it first hand that if you call the police and a baby faced rookie named Benedetti shows up refuse to speak with him. Ask for a seasoned officer.

By: Panicmanic on 1/25/09

Sounds like your pussy whipped badbilly .Grow a "Set" and get her to see a shrink.

By: Afriendindeed on 1/24/09

The Tribune ran the story today. KSBY ran it tonight. Care to bet that it makes New Times next week?

By: duphuckincati on 1/23/09

Maybe Pat should smoke a bowl and get mellowed out.

By: calvertworthington on 1/23/09

It's unfortunate when folks have domestic issues that cause law enforcement to be summoned. When an elected official happens to be a party to the incident publicity is likely. Also, a police/sheriff log of activities is public information, as is a court docket.

During a visit to So. Cal the news included a story where police were called to a City Manager's home by the wife, regarding a domestic issue. In that case, media reported that assigned patrol officers were called-off by management, who responded instead. For what reason?

By: Truthbeknown on 1/23/09

Cal Coast News said: "WHAT WE WILL DO CalCoastNews.com will continue to focus on truly important stories — stories with a public interest. By investigating unsavory business and government practices, we will stimulate positive change. We are non-partisan and adhere to the strictest journalism ethics and standards. Our objective is for advertising to become a source of sustainable funding."

Really? Is that what this article does? CCN has reached a new low. Reporting on personal family disputes, DUI's by school teachers, etc. is good investigative reporting?

You, and those who support this trash reporting, should be ashamed of yourselves!

By: Julie_Stowasser on 1/23/09

Dear NorthCountyGuy, You're absolutely right. Verbal violence (unless of the terrorist threat kind) is not illegal, and it can do terrible harm to the soul. I have not yet met or worked with someone who is interpersonally violent who is not also verbally/mentally/emotionally violent and used those tactics, first. The majority really would like to change and I am appreciative of that. Thanks for the book recommendation.

By: NorthCountyGuy on 1/23/09

Verbal violence from domestic violence abusers can do far more damage than physical violence because it destroys the self-esteem of the victim. Anybody who thinks yelling in a domestic violence situation is harmless should read "The Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense" series of books by Suzette Haden Elgin. Domestic violence (verbal or physical) kills peoples' souls.

By: Julie_Stowasser on 1/23/09

First off, I am really glad everyone is safe and that according to the article, available resources were used to keep the peace. My comments below are to the general public. I do not know of any information other than what is written in the article above, but it seems important to provide some useful information to civilian and clinical readers.

Domestic violence is a pattern of coercive behaviors within an intimate relationship that are designed over time to get another person to think, feel, or behave other than s/he might on their own. This pattern involves verbal, emotional, or psychological forms of control or abuse that will escalate over time in frequency and intensity to threats of violence or actual physical violence and can result in injury, serious injury, and/or death by homicide or suicide. Our beautiful county has seen its share of domestic violence homicides these last few years, to the sadness of all.

Please know that at the same time, we have a very devoted group of individuals from the private therapy sector (such as me) to county agency involvement (such as the DA’s office, Victim Witness, Probation, county welfare, and more) to law enforcement (police and sheriff) and our women’s shelter programs (SLO and North County). ALL are in the phone book or 211/Hotline. No one has to do this alone anymore. We are all here to help keep families safe, and help those who abuse others find more loving, kind, and calm ways of getting their needs met so they don’t have to resort to verbal or physical violence.

Women and men who may be victimized, please contact your shelter services and/or Victim Witness for referrals to the most qualified and well-trained therapists. If there has been violence in your home in the last 12 months PLEASE seek qualified treatment providers – do not do “couples counseling” to address violence when the violence is recent as this has proven over and over again to be harmful to many. Please ask your qualified treatment provider why this is. If she or he does not know, please seek a qualified DV treatment provider. In extreme cases the physical health or life of you or your children might depend on it.

Twenty-five percent of women in America will be physically assaulted by an intimate in their lifetime. Men are assaulted, too. Let’s get the word out that there is help for everyone.

Julie Stowasser

By: NorthCountyGuy on 1/23/09

What are the self-appointed censors of SLO-County trying to hide? PUBLIC officials are called PUBLIC officials for a reason.

Everything PUBLIC officials say or do, in public or private, is PUBLIC information. All PUBLIC officials should be accountable for their actions. Too many PUBLIC officials in SLO County are sneaky fraudsters hiding behind the authority of their positions.

By: Cindy on 1/23/09

This story hit the Tribune one day after CCN reported it. I wonder if it ever would have been reported by the Trib if we hadn't seen it here first? I doubt it.

I've never heard of a Sheriff's wife calling out "the boys" to tell the Sheriff to shut up!

It is interesting news for the community and reporting the incident is appropriate. This is the Sheriff and it appears there is some serious pressure in his life. The means by which he conducts himself and manages his daily concerns can effect the entire county. Thanks for the heads up CCN.

By: Slotown on 1/22/09

Jorge. The village idiot doesn't deserve a helpful village. One earns the respect by their actions, not their shopping habits.

By: Afriendindeed on 1/22/09

It is legitimate to publish this information, but the headline is tacky and seems like a cheap shot. Just an opinion.

By: JorgeEstrada on 1/22/09

I just see the man with his wife and kids shopping at Costco. Just seems like something deserving of a helpful village.

By: Slotown on 1/22/09

I agree that domestic violence is a major threat. However, there is a lot more to this story that has not been released. Do you think the wife of the elected Sheriff would call 911 for something that really was no big deal? Of course not, she is a very bright lady. There isn't a deputy out there that would write a report or arrest the Sheriff for domestic violence because they know their own livelihood would be jeapordized.

Pay attention as here is the important part. What you are witnessing is the down spiral of sad little man who lost control of his world. I suspect that history will actually be kinder to President Bush than it will be to the service of Pat Hedges. He thought someone was criticizing him so he wiretaps that persons office costing us $666,000 in a time of financial crisis. The rest of his staff are so embarassed by his actions and his lack of action to protect the citizens that they can't see straight. I doubt that his peers in County Government have a shred of respect for him. His adulterous affairs and unethical behavior and criminal actions are catching up with him.

So, what does a little man do when everyone hates him at work, they hate him in the community and he has even lost his own self respect? In this case it looks like he took it out on his wife. Now that is sad. Actually, that is frightening as this is the type of profile that has the potential for catastrophe. This pathetic little man who is morally bankrupt and carrys a gun is an extreme threat. He has caused so much pain to some many people because of his narcististic behavior that there really isn't much chance of recovery. Be careful as he is about to hit rock bottom and I pray that he doesn't take anyone with him.

By: JorgeEstrada on 1/22/09

OK, I misspelled of ( not if ). We all know domestic violance is rampid and fortunately some are in jail, as in EFI. As for the alleged Sheriff incident, my opinion would never start with guilty by media. Just how big is the circle that screens the proposed subjects for print? My suggestion would be a minimum of FIVE.

By: InTheKnow on 1/22/09

What are the odds Sandy called 911 to say her husband raised his voice at her. I for one would like to know what is on the 911 tape. How common is it for women to say it was no big deal a few days after a domestic disturbance.

The bigger issue here is why did the deputies decide not to make a report? How long did they spend at the house? No report no paper trail.

By: mccdave on 1/22/09

JorgeEstrada: "NO article if this nature should be published until all FACTS have been established…"

And what odds would you put on all the facts coming out about this particular romantic interlude? 100:1? 1000:1? (I don't see any non-facts in the article, do you?) I'll bet the deputies put that punk Hedges against the wall and patted him down real good just to be safe, and didn't leave without giving him a stern warning.

By: Booty_Juice on 1/21/09

Maybe she complained about the survelliance cameras. Just another sad-sack, badge-heavy Boyscout getting his rocks off pushing around girls. What's newsy about that?

By: JorgeEstrada on 1/21/09

This article is unfair to the family unit and NO article if this nature should be published until all FACTS have been established to be of public relivance.