SLO Police officers under criminal investigation

October 2, 2009


A pair of San Luis Obispo Police officers were stopped allegedly attempting to bring contraband across the border from Mexico last month, a U.S. custom’s spokesperson said.

Sources tell CalCoastNews that San Luis Obispo Police officer Dan McDow and officer Armando Limon are suspected of attempting to bring drugs into the United States at the San Ysidro port of entry. Lauren Mack, spokesperson for Immigration and Customs in San Diego, said the two officers were stopped as they tried to reenter the country from Tijuana.

“There is an ongoing criminal investigation into possible contraband,” Mack said adding that she was not at liberty to discuss the type of contraband.”

Mack was unsure how long the investigation is expected to take.

Police spokesperson, Ian Parkinson, did not return phone requests seeking comments about the officers’ involvement in a criminal investigation and work status. City officials refused to divulge if the pair is on paid administrative leave.

“The leave status of particular employees is personnel information that is not subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act,” as its release could be construed as an unwarranted invasion of privacy,” said Jonathan P. Lowell San Luis Obispo city attorney.

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By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/12/09

I love that last post. WOW. So if the fact that I think murder is wrong, you are saying it is o.k. if someone else says, hey no big deal because in my judgement I find it o.k.??

By: believe74 on 10/12/09

“Do not condemn the judgment of another because it differs from your own. You may both be wrong.”

By: mrrickw on 10/8/09

This is unbelievable. First they steal the sales tax increase and now they go into the import/export business. They should just move to paso and go into the tee shirt business. Or perhaps go with the child porn over at the sheriffs. Parkinson for sheriff? Look at his record, more of the above?

By: Cindy on 10/7/09

Cryan, I would imagine that if CCN reported every LEO that was involved in a DUI, then they should report every public servant who is involved in a DUI. That would be boring news IMO unless it’s a prominent figure. I do agree than an average of one LEO a month sounds high and I have no facts to back that up other than what I recall a reliable source telling me. I can tell you that I knew many LEO when I worked in Southern Cal. Most of them were heavy drinkers, I consider it a hazard of the profession unfortunately). Still I agree that 12 a year in this county sounds like a lot, good point.

By: Cryan on 10/7/09

Cindy; I’d like to know where you heard one LEO is arrested per month on average. That sounds pretty high if that number if its supposed to apply just to our county. And why do you hold a DUI arrest in different regard than you do someone being detained at the boarder? A DUI puts a lot of people in danger while it’s being committed.

I do agree with your thoughts that a LEO should be treated like anyone else until the investigation has been conducted and only then held to the high standard we all expect of them!

By: BIG_SMILES on 10/7/09

Did someone mention Benedetti Jr. I know who that punk is. He is a real hot head, I don’t think he is on the force anymore if he ever was to begin with . BTW, If he’s the “rookie” Cindy was talking about, I think he is older than 22, he is more like 26 or 27.

By: Nancy on 10/7/09

” Sources tell CalCoastNews that San Luis Obispo Police officer Dan McDow and officer Armando Limon are suspected of attempting to bring drugs into the United States”

There is the reason for speculation on extreme malfeasance. I’ve never seen CCN wrong yet.

By: mcdonald on 10/7/09

GREAT POSTS by Cindy, Michelle, MOM2009 and Jordan. Touche’.

By: ogMOM2009 on 10/7/09

I know that some police break the law and then laugh about it. I’m privy to certain conversations that made fun of how the police are above the law and they laugh at us citizens while they joke about us on the cellphone.

By: Michelle on 10/7/09

Gail Wilcox and David Edge both were on paid administrative leave. They were fired for cause after months of a free ride on the public coffers. We never got our money back from them. They got paid by the citizens for having a “time out”.

Randy Ghezzi (sp?) was on paid administrative leave for months. He was forced to resign for wrong doing. We never got our money back from him either and were never even told the outcome of the investigation that we all paid for. His underling partner got a transfer to another local parish, sort of like what the Catholics do with bad priests. Since when does a company transfer a thieving employee to a department where they can’t abuse the companies inventory any longer ?

These public servants have too many rights, rights to free pay, rights to privacy, rights to stick it to the public.

By: Cindy on 10/7/09

rukidding – I will get straight to the crux of your question. If I were a public servant who was relieved of my duty but was collecting my full salary from the public, while giving them no return for their tax dollars, I would expect to tell them why.

If I were temporarily out of commission (for suspected wrong doing) at no cost to the public then I would expect to have a right to some privacy during an investigation. I believe that all employers have a right to know what they are paying for. Right now we are denied that right, this is something that is never afforded citizens who work in the private sector.

You might think that I hold contempt for law enforcement, on the other end of the spectrum, I was recently accused of working for the SLOPD because I disagreed that they conspired to conceal evidence of a murder. The fact is that I admire LE and expect them to keep their word and conduct themselves with integrity. When they become engendered I feel “duped” (as many do). I know they make mistakes, it’s when they condescend us all with their pitiful attempts to cover it up, it’s when they outright misinform the media and play with semantics to justify that everything is on the up and up or that they are the law so me must accept their word. That’s when I take exception. Yes we all need them and thank God 95% of them are honest and conduct themselves under the same laws that they hold the rest of us to.

As for your question regarding the APD and the incident I mentioned the other evening. The answer is yes, I would love to tell everyone about my encounter with “one” rookie (all of 22 years old) who made a decision that was opposite of what had been suggested to him by seasoned officers who were aware of the situation. Believe me I’d love to share the whole story with everyone. The fact is that it’s off topic and too long a story to squeeze in. Does this answer your questions?

By: rukidding on 10/7/09


You keep asking about the details of this incident over and over. Are you will to release the details of YOUR incident with the APD? Or would you like to retain your privacy rights?

By: Laura on 10/7/09

Your so right AA101. Whats really getting outrageous is the fact that the citizens appear to be more familiar with the law than our paid top law enforcement.

“The leave status of particular employees is personnel information that is not subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act,” as its release could be construed as an unwarranted invasion of privacy,” said Jonathan P. Lowell San Luis Obispo city attorney. ”

It turns out that this wasn’t true. Karen actually sent him the case law that applies to this statue he was trying to invoke . The city attorney ended up having to release the information. Why should a citizen have to prove the law to the City Attorney?

The same thing happened with Lisa Solomon who blatantly misquoted law and then misinterpreted it to misinform the public about her guilt and culpability. The APC Jim Mulhall had the nerve to agree with her and the DA said he agreed with her interpretation of the law also. The interpretation was grossly inaccurate and not even close to the statue she was quoting. Even the Attorney General said they were wrong and not exempt of the law. We have a bunch of overpaid idiot top dogs working in this county. How did we end up with such mediocrity? Do they really think the citizenry is that ignorant? Apparently they do and probably it’s because they have got away with this for long. Where is that citizens over sight committee that the local gov all said we didn’t need.

By: AA101 on 10/7/09

I bet Lisa Solomon and Jim Mulhall are sure enjoying this. The onus of questionable integrity has shifted. The thread on that story might be slow as the attention has focused to the latest malfeasance but we haven’t forgot.

By: Cindy on 10/7/09

Cryan – “It’s too bad Karen didn’t think the recent arrest of Dep. Lesperance by AGPD was news!”

Cryan, I was informed that a LEO is arrested for DUI on average about once a month. Most of us never know about it because the arrest is handled properly, without bias and the offending officer goes through the court system like everyone else. It appears that that a DUI isn’t considered news to CCN when it’s handled just like it would be for any other citizen. I think CCN has taken a respectable approach regarding that. If you read about a DUI here it’s because the offender was given preferential treatment. I imagine if it was a CC Member or the BOS or someone like that, it might land on this site, I don’t know. I do respect CCN’s approach considering there are so many DUI’s

The reason Lesperance landed in the news like the NT is because the police themselves were reporting him to all the media outlets. Karen talked about this on the Dave Congalton Show, but didn’t give his name.

By: Cindy on 10/7/09

I just heard this story on FOX News. They didn’t offer any additional information apart from a letter from the City Attorney. Lowell changed his story about why they won’t divulge what the contraband was. Rather than site the employee’s right to privacy, he said that it could compromise any future actions that the city “might take” regarding the incident.

They did point out that McDow and Limon were immediately placed on PAL the day after they were stopped at the boarder.

By: Cryan on 10/6/09

PaulJones; Do you have any idea how the rules in real world work. You can’t just say the PD should tell all, then change your mind to “Thats going to change”. Your the guy who would be on this same blog condemning the City when they lost the civil suit and paid out to the officers being investigated. I’m not saying it’s the best system, only that those are the rules the PD and City administration have to play by while it’s the law of the land!

By: George on 10/6/09

Jordan : thank you, pgillis: your user page is underutilized! you can post some link and things there .

By: PaulJones on 10/6/09

Cryan, You’ve got to be kidding. Here we go round and round we go and where we stop nobody knows. Limon and McDow are hiding behind their self servicing right to privacy. If they have done nothing wrong then why don’t they just get over here and tell all so. The people have allowed government to set up impenetrable walls of red tape and paper castles decorated with legal jargon. It’s starting to backfire on them and rightfully so. The city of Atascadero used that very same excuse to use an employee as a scape goat, then refuse to vindicate him and tell us all that they were only protecting his rights by withholding the results of an investigation that would vindicate him. Marty Tracy finally got Mayor Brennler to make the investigative report public at Mr. Tracy’s request. He did make it public and he was vindicated as a fall guy. The real person behind the scam was the city manager, Wade McKinney. I laugh when I hear a public employee who is on paid administrative leave has a right to privacy. NO THEY SHOULD’NT. That’s going to change.

By: Cryan on 10/6/09

Paul Jones; There is a good reason SLOPD won’t release any info yet. If they do they would be in violation of the police officer bill of rights which would leave the City voulnerable to a civil suit filed by Limon or McDow. That sounds like a pretty good reason to me why they are not releasing any info yet. You know saving the tax payers money!

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/6/09

Patroldog. Well stated.

By: Jordan on 10/6/09

Thank You Patrol Dog. Those are my thoughts, as are the thoughts of most people blogging here.

Ms/Mr/Mrs slochik, This site deletes trolls.

By: PatrolDog on 10/6/09

There is no god reason for any Law Enforcement Officer to carry contraband across the boarder into the United States. It is first and foremost their job to know the law of the land, enforce the law of the land and to conduct themselves with integrity and all that this honored profession is entrusted with.

I am off duty and have logged onto this site from a privately owned PC.

By: PaulJones on 10/6/09

The fact is that there have been lots of cops doing lots of dumb things. The department heads continuously try to cover up for each other. This site has broke many stories that never would have reached the public. I’m reminded of Gussens’ who slammed into 4 parked cars in Atascadero and rolled his truck. Everyone knew he was on medication for his nerves because he was about to get arrested for child pornography.

The whole accident was glossed over as nothing more than an accident. The APD even falsified their report saying a witness claimed Gussens’ wasn’t speeding. The witness claimed they never saw how fast he was going!

It hasn’t stopped since, it’s just one cover up after another. People are getting fed up with the police thinking and acting as if they are above the law. Maybe McDow and Limon did have viagra, maybe one of them was buying an Aides cocktail and didn’t declare the meds or want to be publicly embarrassed. Who knows, there is no good reason why the SLOPD can’t tell the public that they failed to declare legal medication if that’s the case, we don’t have to know what medication. This sounds like something more sinister, that’s a fact.

By: dhgscw on 10/6/09

Concerned PB – you are the voice of sanity in this discussion.

By: ConcernedPB on 10/6/09

BeenThereDoneThat- I totally agree, and I often do the same thing! I just feel that some of the previous comments are really inflammatory and condemning. That can be really dangerous and unfair to the parties involved, when for all we know they WERE only trying to bring in something innocuous! (Upon researching this, I’ve found that the border patrol considers things like viagra, antibiotics, depression meds, or diet pills to be “drugs” or items that need to be declared…I had not previously known that). I just think everyone deserves a fair shot to be vindicated if it’s found to be deserved. Since it’s an investigation and I’m sure nobody involved is allowed to comment, I think time will have to tell on this one.

By: pgillis on 10/6/09

We never said these officers were involved in our son’s death; just that the SLOPD are covering up in general.

The Gillis Family

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/6/09

I like the comment about speculating due to lack of facts. That is what we all do in life from who might win a sports game, to what is going on in business, etc. Other wise we all would sit around silent all day with nothing to talk about. ;-)

By: Cindy on 10/6/09

dhgscw and George are correct. I’ll move my post to the EFI tread where it fits in with the outrage over the DA’s office poor handling of the EFI case and other cases.

By: BIG_SMILES on 10/6/09

dhgscw, Until we have the facts people are going to speculate. That’s a no brainer.

Cindy, The Brian Gillis case probably belongs on the Estate Financial blog where people are complaining about D.A. Gerry and his lack of backbone.

By: dhgscw on 10/6/09

CONCERNED PB has it right. It is dangerous to go wondering off into ‘opinion’ without being based in the facts.

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/6/09

AA101 I think states it best. If you have nothing to hide (minor stuff) then why not just come clean to stop the rumor mill?

I for one have no axe to grind with cops. Personnelly know three in local area working for different agencies. That is why I hate to see questionable stuff like this and other in past. It paints the rest of the good ones in a poor light. That is not an axe to grind. That is about fairness to those who do uphold the law, to a fine standard.

By: Cindy on 10/6/09

ConcernPB – “wouldn’t they have been arrested at the border? Clearly they were not,”

Why do you think they clearly were not arrested? It takes less than 24 hours to post bail and go home. They would not have been considered a flight risk since they are law enforcement. I haven’t seen anything to lead me to conclude exactly what action might or might not have been taken at the boarder.

It does sound like they might not have declared something and were simply ticketed.

Somebody made a joke about viagra, and it’s possible that they had something that was basically innocuous, if that’s the case it would be wise to inform the public as such and clear their names.

By: ConcernedPB on 10/6/09

I just believe that the public will be informed if it turns out that they were in fact doing something illegal. Since it seems to be in the process of an investigation, then it must be unclear whether or not a law was broken. Plus AGAIN, if a law WAS broken, wouldn’t they have been arrested at the border? Clearly they were not, so there must be some uncertainty as to whether or not a law was indeed broken. I guarantee that the border patrol does not care whether or not these guys are cops and would have arrested them on the spot if they were certain they were engaging in illegal activities. Don’t these guys deserve a chance for a fair investigation without people calling for blood? Again, the “contraband” my sister was detained for possessing was tequila she had bought legally that she did not know she was supposed to declare. Somehow I don’t think anybody expressing opinions here would want to be publicly flogged for a decision they believed was above-board. Until we know the facts in this investigation, I just believe people should keep a more open mind. Everybody seems to hate cops until they need them for their own protection. It just sounds to me like a lot of people on here have their own personal axe to grind.

By: AA101 on 10/6/09

@ ConcernedPB, If McDow and Limon had a parrot or were trying to take home too many cartons of cheap cigarettes why don’t they just say so? I suspect most of us would have a good laugh at the turkeys. Their silence and refusal to inform the public of what sort of contraband they had leads me to believe that it was in the form of drugs, be it steroids or prescription meds that are popular and used for recreational drooling.

By: Michelle on 10/6/09

“City officials refused to divulge if the pair is on paid administrative leave.” They finally divulged that these two bone heads are on paid administrative leave. They didn’t tell CCN though, they told the Tribune information that they denied to CCN. IMO someone is playing favorites with the press. Why are these guys on paid vacation? They broke the law? Do we all get paid vacation when we break the law?

By: Cindy on 10/6/09

ConsernedPB – I guess the reason that there is so much speculation is because there hasn’t been any reports on this. Officials at the SLOPD know that the word is out and yet they continue to avoid addressing the concerns of the citizens. An allegation of police smuggling drugs is very serious. These officers either were in possession of “illegal contraband” or they weren’t. There have been many incidents recently where the public is denied information under the guise of a public employees right to privacy, or because there is an investigation that can go on for months while the individual is on paid administrative leave, or the police who tell us the law doesn’t apply to them like what just happened with Lisa Solomon. I would say that we are all getting pretty disgusted with these shenanigans. A review board that is seated by local citizens for the purpose of gov over sight is what we need and if what I hear is correct, the plan is to put it to a vote in 2010. That will solve a lot of problems.

By: rogerfreberg on 10/6/09

First, I would like to thank the Cal Coast News for being the FIRST to cover so many issues, including the local police officers & their ‘lapse of judgment’ over the border. I am darkly amused that only in today’s Tribune did they even begin to discuss this incident.

Most of us here have great sympathy for the Gillis family… and from what I read… mostly offering something positive.

In a county in which a male high school teacher gets roughly 6 months in jail for having sex with his female underage student(s)… as compared to 5 – 10 years elsewhere … one can only wonder if the frat or the police officers will get little more than ‘double secret probation.’

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/6/09

Well I’ll have to step clear of that one, as I have read nothing to form an opinion one way or the other.

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/6/09

I said it before and I’ll say it again. The button at the bottom of page says opinion. I for one am just voicing my opinion on the article that was presented in this forum. I do not say that my opinion is right or wrong. Just my opinion.

By: ConcernedPB on 10/6/09

I am as concerned about the integrity of our law enforcement as the next citizen, however I think a lot of people are letting their personal prejudice against police officers cloud their judgment here. Obviously they were not arrested by the border patrol, or terminated by the department. There is obviously more to this than what everyone is assuming from the little information they’ve been given on an ALLEGATION. Whatever happened to “innocent until proven guilty”? These guys are already being crucified before anybody has any information. Why don’t you we let the experts do their jobs and determine right from wrong. I would think we would all hope for the same right to privacy and fair judgment to which these officers are entitled. Just for the record, last year my sister was detained at the San Ysidro port of entry and held for 12 hours with no food and no right to an attorney for bringing in “contraband” to the US. The “contraband” was two undeclared bottles of tequila. Should she have been arrested, fired from her job, and publicly crucified over such a “serious” offense? I just think people should go easier on these guys before the facts are known. Something tells me that as gung-ho as the border patrol are to detain people, they would have arrested and charged them on the spot if they had had any just cause. I just hope people keep this in perspective and let the authorities do their job.

By: George on 10/5/09

Off topic? way off topic cat fight? comments deleted had nothing to do with the story.

By: Nancy on 10/5/09

Mrs Gillis, considering that the following statement was made by a persom who posted here,

“Of course if we find out that some SLOPD were bringing GHB in from Mexico and that McDow or Limon were respondents to Brian’s dorm then the roof is probably going to come down in SLO city.

Again- my sincere and best wishes to you and your family.”

Your latest statement seems to comfirm and approve the exact statements that you just attacked yesterday evening? Which is it? Is it anybody that doesn’t agree with you at the moment?

By: pgillis on 10/5/09

It was allegedly inferred that the SLOPD were in on the drug dealing with Sigma Chi when our son died. And that is the only reason we posted on this article. Talk about slow, what drugs did these officers allegedly bring across the border and why has it not been publicly reported in the press and on the television news stations. Possibly a cover up? Definitely.

The Gillis Family

By: AA101 on 10/5/09

Jordan is correct. This has nothing to do with Brain Gillis.

By: Jordan on 10/5/09

The police officers in question have nothing to do with this. Brian Gillis was deceased in April 2002 for a self administered dose of GHB, as reported by Dan Blackburn who is a non biased reporter. The officers in question were not hired into SLO until June 2002.

Lets try to stay on topic and stop the attacks on anyone who doesn’t agree to a 7 year unsubstantiated murder allegation and superficial revenge.

By: slochik on 10/5/09

Thanks Gillis Family. I am sorry for your loss and admire your dedication.

By: Cryan on 10/5/09

well said slochik! Here’s the thing. We all appreciate what a fine job Karen does at digging up these stories before anyone else. That said, this thing is in the very early stages and since it involves boarder patrol that means its a federal thing so we all know that means it will take a bit before the boarder patrol investigation is concluded. SLOPD probably won’t conduct their investigation of the officers until the boarder patrol investigation is done. The Capt. probably doesn’t have much he can say right now.

If Capt. Parkinson gave up any details to Karen at this point he would be violating the Police Officer Bill of Rights. I can imagine all the blog comments if the Capt. did that. The civil suit filed by both officers naming the Capt. and the City of SLO would not be an inexpensive venture, even if the City prevailed. Kinda sounds like the Capt might actually know what he’s doing. Saving the City from a civil suit, what’s that guy thinking?

By: karen on 10/5/09

I will be on the Dave Congalton Show today at 5 p.m. to discuss this issue. Turn your radio to 920AM or listen live at

By: Cryan on 10/5/09

Booty – “Protecting themselves and their own from the likes of “civilians” is the predominant concern…”

It’s too bad Karen didn’t think the recent arrest of Dep. Lesperance by AGPD was news! It seems this arrest kinda pokes a hole in your theory! What’s your thought on why AGPD made that arrest?

What kind of “law abiding, tax paying citizens” have a name like “Booty Juice” and what does a name like that mean? I question your motives (and prior history with the cops) when you paint county wide law enforcement with such a wide brush!

If the cops arrest someone for DUI, their only trying to pad the County coffers and if they don’t arrest anyone then shame on them for being lazy. Make up your mind, should they enforce or not?

By: slochik on 10/5/09

“Cindy”…you are so bitter. Quotas or not, if someone is SPEEDING they deserve a ticket. And busting someone for a DUI should be a “feather in thier cap”…do you want intoxicated people on the road? I feel like I am in the twilight zone here…Cindy I am sure you feel as though you have gotten the short end of the stick your entire life.

“mcdonald”…I am just saying that maybe Ian is waiting until he has all the info before he speaks about it. Being in the position he is in, he can’t just spew something out much like we all can here in a blog.

By: CentralCoastCruiser on 10/5/09

Cindy said “I believe this is frequently the case. It’s all about bringing in the revenue and sticking it to the citizens every chance they can get for a few bucks out of us. Sad but it’s starting to feel true. I do know that the police have quotas of tickets to write and DUI is always a big feather for them. If a person has one beer but admits that they take medication like prozac they are immediately arrested for DUI. Criminals who steal guns from a police chief and commit burglary are less of a priority. It’s all about the money these days.”

I am sorry you feel this way about cops. You must have experienced some bad interactions. there are good and bad cops, just like in every career in life.

I am also disgusted by the recent actions by police officers. They should not be making these huge ethical blunders, but they are human. I am not blinded to the fact that all cops are bad or evil. The fact is, we need law enforcement and there are good cops in our county. I hope we will continue to expect our cops to keep their promise to be above reproach and keep the community safe.

I want the officers that are committing crimes and making unethical choices to be held accountable and responsible for those things. We should expect nothing less.

By: Rany on 10/5/09

slochik = “I love how everyone is an expert now. If they broke the law, they will be punished according to the law just like everyone else. says, ”

Sure they will be, just like Lisa Solomon, Jim Mulhall and Jay Short, dah. Lets not forget Whiting the CHP that was never charged but transferred. Geee, maybe that’s how we all ended up with McDow & Limon in the first place.

By: Cindy on 10/5/09

Booty – “Now they are little more then heavily armed, overly paid tax collectors who have no interest in deterring or solving criminal activity unless it involves net revenue for the treasury.”

I believe this is frequently the case. It’s all about bringing in the revenue and sticking it to the citizens every chance they can get for a few bucks out of us. Sad but it’s starting to feel true. I do know that the police have quotas of tickets to write and DUI is always a big feather for them. If a person has one beer but admits that they take medication like prozac they are immediately arrested for DUI. Criminals who steal guns from a police chief and commit burglary are less of a priority. It’s all about the money these days.

BTW – “dog bothering oop nort” – Glad you caught yourself, I’m right proud of you!

By: mcdonald on 10/5/09

“Give Ian a break….maybe he just knows when to keep his mouth shut.”

For who’s benefit?

By: slochik on 10/5/09

I love how everyone is an expert now. If they broke the law, they will be punished according to the law just like everyone else. Yes, it is dissapointing that people who are supposed to be held to a higher standard sometimes do the wrong thing but that’s life. Fire them and do your best to fill thier positions with better officers. As for what type of drugs they were, who cares? That shouldn’t matter-illegal is illegal. Give Ian a break….maybe he just knows when to keep his mouth shut.

By: Booty_Juice on 10/5/09

Bent Coppers. Dirty, crooked cops.

Nothing new here. Same old song and dance that’s been playing since forever.

Getting caught with their hands in the evidence bin, child molesting, downloading kiddie porn, wife beating, dog bothering oop nort, and let’s not forget the ubiquitous, all pervasive “professional courtesy”. Any cop who has ever shown his badge upon getting pulled over for a traffic stop is bent. Any who have given their “business card” to their wives and kids for them to use as a free pass is crooked. Any who waive citations for their own are dirty. Any who defend the practice are corrupt. They believe themselves to be above the law because in fact they are. When you know for a fact that so-called law enforcement officers will not apply the laws to you which they hold all others accountable for, behaviors will change. Hence, bent cops. And they wonder why they are held in such low esteem by law abiding, tax paying citizens.

Gone are the days when the police concentrated on keeping the peace and arresting people who posed a danger to the community, you the law abiding tax payer. Now they are little more then heavily armed, overly paid tax collectors who have no interest in deterring or solving criminal activity unless it involves net revenue for the treasury.

Protecting themselves and their own from the likes of “civilians” is the predominant concern, always and above all other matters. Idle, bloated, badge heavy, bunker mentality Barneys who at the slightest whiff of being exposed as bent take “early retirement”.

Same as it ever was. Nothing to see here people, move along.

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/4/09

Released, not released. Who cares. The fact that there is a possibility that two law inforcement officers from our county might be suspected in a crime is what is unacceptable.

By: Cindy on 10/4/09

WazzUp, Maybe someone should ask Mack where the arraignment hearing was? Normally they should have been arrested and then been arraigned and then posted bail, right? If there was no arraignment then that would probably mean that they received special treatment and maybe good old Ian came to the rescue.

By: Cryan on 10/4/09

Al that was a good one!

WazzUp, Why do you assume McDow and Limon were released instead of being? I saw nothing in Karen’s story that referenced the pairs custodial status. Let’s stick with the facts folks!

By: Al on 10/4/09

Buying cheap Viagra brings big headaches….

By: Vagabond on 10/4/09

Thank Ghod Los Osos never got their own police.

By: Michelle on 10/4/09

I too am dissatisfied with the lack of response from Ian Parkinson. He did the same thing with the failed raid in Atascadero. We never did find out what that fiasco ended costing the taxpayers. We could all still get sued for that debacle. If Ian Parkinson is going to duck and hide every time something goes wrong with his line men then he clearly isn’t Sheriff material. Seems like his real qualifications are hiding from the media, kissing butt for promotions and his financial management experience is limited to cashing his big fat pay check.

By: Saveslocounty on 10/4/09

Well, here we go again. While the facts will certainly come out in time and I can understand wiktholding information until they can identify other members of the team (ring) that are involved in this criminal enterprise. What I can not understand is the lask of a comment by Mr. Parkinson. He sounds so much like the little courrupt Sheriff Hedges that has avoiding the media and the the public since taking office. Of course, now we know why he as he was covering up all of his illegal practices that we citizens enjoyed the pleasure of funding. Parkinson is apparently Hedges mini-me, only taller and a lot better looking. Of course, Papa-Smurf is taller than Hedges, but that is not important know. In order for Parkinson to even be a contender in the race for Sheriff he must learn what transparency in government means. He is going to wast a great eal of money on a campaign, just as his mentor, Jim Gardner did. The best course would be to step down from the race and wait for Chief Linden to step down so you can take over for her. That job is appointed and you stand a better chance. Sorry to offend, but you are bringing nothing new to the table and business as usual at the Sheriff’s Department is simply not acceptable.

By: George on 10/3/09

Free Charles Lynch !

By: Jordan on 10/3/09

” Mack was unsure how long the investigation is expected to take.”

What’s to investigate. They either had the drugs or they didn’t. Law Enforcement in this country needs a kick in the as* and the FBI needs a double kick.

By: JorgeEstrada on 10/3/09

Just being toung and cheek, my empathy is for the majority of law enforcement that deserve better press.

By: rogerfreberg on 10/3/09

hmmmm…here are a few suggestions:

1) Never play by the other person’s rules, especially when they own the game. If you play here in SLO, expect to lose.

The best way to shake things up in SLO county is to take any litigation and publicity outside of the county.Funny how different people react when they see their news on Fox or in US News and World Report.

2) Do you know that the law was changed many years ago that provide for public administrators to be sued for the decisions they make? Check it out, but I know that Warren Baker — for example — does not like to be named on a lawsuit and he will work his hardest to get his name off.

3) One of your lawyers must reside outside the county. Most local lawyers have to look to their future… or get spanked if not professionally whacked.

4) If you can bring a case and file outside the county… you are better off. Federal courts are better.

5) Place pressure on all the news outlets to get the story out… don’t wait for the Tribune to follow up… this is good stuff.

just my humble opinion.

Roger Freberg

By: BIG_SMILES on 10/3/09

Public Employees who break the law should not have a right to privacy. If we had a review board made up of citizens we could cut through all this red tape, shucking and jiving crap and clean this county up. I know some people are working on getting that in place, it’s time to step it up folks. 2010 is around the corner and we need to get it on the ballot.

By: Cindy on 10/3/09

If McDow and Limon were smuggling drugs like that then that is ten times worse than marijuana. Those drugs are highly addictive and easy to over dose on because the body develops a tolerance. Steroids are equally very dangerous, they make people act hostile and irrational just like meth does. If they had something that was benevolent, (like for cancer, etc) for someone and they went to Mexico to procure it because that drug isn’t FDA approved then that will be a different story and will mitigate the offense but I doubt that’s what they were up to.

Gee those are some mighty nice benefits the retired CDC guards have there. I’ve never heard of a retired person marrying a woman with a 20/21 year old son and getting him covered with full medical benefits on the tax payers backs. Just one more reason for reform. This is what happens when the public doesn’t pay attention to what our servants are up to. They just keep grabbing all they can get and it’s never ENOUGH.

Pgillis – I have no doubt that you know far more than the rest of us do about your son’s case. I can’t imagine the police hiding evidence, they have children too and it would have taken a conspiracy to accomplish an effective cover up (not that it hasn’t happened before)but why in your son’s case? Of course if we find out that some SLOPD were bringing GHB in from Mexico and that McDow or Limon were respondents to Brian’s dorm then the roof is probably going to come down in SLO city.

Again- my sincere and best wishes to you and your family.

By: Laura on 10/3/09

Cute Monty Python skit McDave, but those Brits are a bit dry for my sense of humor.

Paul – Yeah, that would be down right unpatriotic, wouldn’t it! Barbiturate type drugs are easy to purchase in Mexico and are popular recreational drugs. Steroids are equally popular and easy to come by. I have a friend who is a retired county (CDC) worker with excellent benefits (prescriptions were almost free). He complained to me that his 22 year old step son (yes county medical benefits include 22 year old step children who have been in your life for 18 months) had a regular prescription for pain killers and that he caught him separating how many pills he would keep and how many he would sell at $6.00 a piece! I don’t think the cops were crossing the boarder with a bunch of marijuana, I think they had something that was easier to hide and didn’t stink (olfactory wise that is).

By: PaulJones on 10/3/09

Ahhh, Burn the California crops and then bring the stuff in from Mexico? That’s just down right unpatriotic.

By: mccdave on 10/3/09

Let’s not jump to conclusions. After all, SLO’s finest may have just been trying to reinforce the thin blue line:

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/3/09

Well the next time the Govt. plans to a tax to hire more cops nationwide, they can start the hiring process by going to the barrios and hiring drug dealers. That way we the people know up front what we are getting.

By: scooterman on 10/3/09

Lets face it in exchange for protecting us ( HA HA HA Get more protection from a condom with a hole in it ) they get a free run to break the law.

By: mcdonald on 10/3/09

The cops probably aren’t pleased with CCN for breaking this story. The fact that this happened last month could mean it happened 5 days ago! It’s not uncommon for the LEO to keep a drug dealers arrest quiet while they investigate. They probably want to turn these cop criminals against the people they were doing business with. Not an easy thing to do when all your associates know you’ve been busted. They’ll all be heading for the hills now. Of course an ongoing investigation can always be an excuse to hide behind, we’ve all seen that happen before. Kudo’s to CCN.

By: Nancy on 10/3/09

No one seems to know anything about this except Cal Coast News. There isn’t any information anywhere. How do we find out whats going on? I want to know what drugs they were running and where they were selling the stuff. I want to know whats being done about this. This is our business.

By: Cindy on 10/3/09

Dear pgillis, I doubt that there is a person that doesn’t feel for your loss and pain. Drugs are prevalent across this country and many young people experiment. I think it’s doubtful that the SLO police planned to “possbily depose of any evidence they found.” I think it’s standard to clear a possible crime scene or the scene of any death to tend to the deceased and collect any possible evidence. The SLO police had no reason to conceal evidence surrounding this tragedy. I’m familiar with Brian’s case (as it was reported in the press) and believe that the police did all that they could do considering the collective testimony and witness statements. God’s speed that you begin to heal, again I believe we all feel for your great loss.

By: Cindy on 10/3/09

Looks like these two were hired together. I ran across this is the SLO CC minutes dated June 18, 2002.

Police Chief Gardiner introduced Nicole Brandt and Dan McDow recently hired

Communication Technicians . He also introduced Armando Limon, Nick Kennedy, Gin a

Salazar, Jed O’Rourke, and Caleb Kemp, recently hired as San Luis Obispo police officers.

I wonder where they came from and what their previous work history was?

By: WazzUp on 10/3/09

I also find it ironic that Ian Parkinson is running for Sheriff but; he “did not return phone requests seeking comment”.

Yeah! This is the type of guy I want for Sheriff.

By: WazzUp on 10/3/09

I keep hearing that nobody can talk about “The Situation” because it’s a personnel matter. Hey! If they committed a crime than it’s public information. A crime is NOT a personnel issue.

You can tell the cover up has already started by Lauren Mack stating, “There is an on going criminal investigation into possible contraband”.

So am I to believe that everyone who crosses the border with “contraband” their let go until the investigation is final. What! Then we call them up and ask them to come back so we can arrest them. This is bullshit.

I can’t believe these two weren’t arrested. If it looks like dope, smells like dope and tastes like dope then I’m fairly certain it is dope.

Since their cops it’ll be swept under the rug unless we put the pressure on by contacting Homeland Security, Immigrations, customes, the Chief and everyone else we need to lean on.

By: pgillis on 10/2/09

Newspaper sources informed our family that the SLOPD and other higher upw were involved with dealing drugs when our son, Brian Gillis, was found dead on April 4, 2002 at his Stenner Glen dorm room. It was testified to by former Sigma Chi brother Nick Potter on July 25, 2003 at his deposition in SLO that Sigma Chi had been mixing GHB and Gatorade together for 2 years, calling it “faderade”, and storing it in their refrigerators. The SLOPD told the Campus Police and Stenner Glen staff to get out of our son’s rooml\; they wanted to get Brian in the body bag quickly and possbily depose of any evidence they found. Chief Linden and her crew refused to arrest Cal Poly student and Sigma Chi brother Matt Heintz after this testimony; she and her crew just kept dragging out the manslaughter statute.

SLO is a major drug haven and the community needs to wake up. Our family has made so much noise to state representatives since Carson Starkey’s death at the SAE Fraternity last December, the SLOPD was forced to investigate Carson’s death. Someone in SLO should be starting a petition to get rid of SLO D.A. Gerry Shea and Cal Poly President Warren Baker. But, as many of our friends and family have said, until these types of deaths start happening to one of your own, SLO residents will continue to look the other way.

The Gillis Family

By: Use_it_or_Lose_it on 10/2/09

Being the highest paid police officer in the state of California is apparently not enough. Or perhaps on top of it all there is just too much free time for them.

I posted previously about web information on oversight. It’s time.

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/2/09

“I have to digest this and use the bathroom”.

I like that one Cindy.

I believe in one of the other posts a while back about cops (I think it was the bust of the business in Atas.) someone mentioned about a police commission being needed. I remember there were a few that thought we really didn’t need one. Anyone still think we don’t need a police commission on the central coast??

By: Cindy on 10/2/09

BTDT – I’m sure Estrada was being sarcastic.

This happened a month ago and we are only hearing about it now! If CCN wasn’t around I wonder how long this would have been kept “under wraps”. I guess it’s a violation of the police officers right to privacy to inform the public what they have been up to when they’ve been up to “no good”! As for denying the public a right to know if our employees are on “paid administrative leave”, well…… I say bring on the Citizens Government Oversight Committee yesterday (which is already a decade too late). I’m sick of these $%%&*()^% and their condescending *&&^%$#$%. I’m more than sick of it. I don’t have anything more to say at the moment. I have to digest this and use the bathroom.

By: scooterman on 10/2/09

Oh wait a minute are we in SLO county or Hazard county ( Boss Hog runin the show maybe )

By: scooterman on 10/2/09

What another local Police dept with officers that think cause they have a badge and a gun that they are above the law.Maybe they can get together with P.R. & Atasc. chiefs to learn how to get their stories nice and straight .

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/2/09

Another thing that REALLY pisses me off about this. Wasn’t it SLO P.D. that just got their salary increased to about $104,000 a couple years ago? What they aren’t making enough so they have to break the law?? Ridiculas.

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/2/09

Mr. Estrada I want to make sure I understand your comment. Are you implying that these men were working undercover or are you just being sarcastic?

By: BeenThereDoneThat on 10/2/09

OMG!!! I know there (at least I hope) are good cops out there in our county but with all this recent stuff with the Sheriff’s dept, the Paso P.D. and lost guns, SLO & Atas. P.D. busting down doors and personal residence doors for bogus drug busts etc. I have a question.


I think it is time to clean up EVERYTHING in this county from top down. This is getting DISGUISTING. I am flippin fed up paying these A**HOLES good money and benefits for this crap. ENOUGH!!!

By: JorgeEstrada on 10/2/09

For most, the investigation occurs at the time of crossing or at the road check. Although for them, police officers, they could be part of a super secret drug trafficing test. The test went well and proved that our borders are secure. Good job men, welcome back home.

By: mccdave on 10/2/09

Does “stopped” mean arrested?