SLO firefighter claims self defense

September 2, 2011

San Luis Obispo firefighter John Ryan Mason testified Thursday he threw punches in self-defense following an argument in a bathroom at Pappy McGregor’s Bar & Grill on Monterey Street in June.

John Ryan Mason, 34, allegedly beat Jory Brigham, 32, unconscious after an eight-month rift stemming from claims the firefighter was having an affair with another man’s wife. Brigham, the husband of Mason’s wife’s best friend, had posted a message on his Facebook page that men should not leave their wives for woman they are having affairs with.

Mason admitted to police he was upset over the Facebook post. He, however, told officers Brigham was the aggressor during their June altercation, according to the police report.

Mason had no injuries while Brigham required three metal plates to be placed in his face and his jaw to be wired shut.

Brigham testified he repeatedly told his assailant to let go of the past dispute at Thursday’s hearing to determine if there is sufficient evidence to proceed to trial.

Five days after the alleged assault, officers booked Mason into San Luis Obispo County Jail on suspicion of assault with great bodily injury, battery with serious bodily injury, and inflicting great bodily injury while committing a felony.

Mason bailed out of jail and returned to work at the San Luis Obispo Fire Department. City officials placed Mason on desk duty while the city performs an investigation.

 


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slojustice

If I remember correctly we live in the United States of America and you are innocent until proven guilty. Just because someone loses a fight does not mean he is a victim. The comments I have read so far are so angry they border on hysteria. None of us have all of the facts. Maybe Jory was being obnoxious and he was the aggressor. Evidently he felt he could stick his nose into some families business and it came back to bite him. I bet Jory thinks twice before he does something like this again.


obispan

Sounds like some serious inside baseball here. I’m outside, but I will offer this one comment. While working for a company that owned commercial and residential properties I was verbally harassed by an individual who also liked to get into my personal space as well. The police were involved, but of course once they were gone, well… I asked an officer’s advice and was told that that type of behavior was “incitement to fight” and I could respond as if a fight were initiated by the other party. I did not, but this was nice to know. Plus the situation was already on record with the cops.


slocorruptionhater

@obispan…you either misunderstood the officer, or he gave you possibly the worst advice ever. If someone is verbally harrasing you, you have the option to engage them, or walk away.


obispan

No the other person needs to walk away. You need to back up your statements with legal citations and learn how to spell.


slocorruptionhater

@obispan…you want me to back up my claim that you can’t physically assault someone because they are verbally assaulting you? Can’t do it…how about you find any legal citation that allows one to physically assault someone “incited” by a verbal assault (to validate the advice you received). Who knows, I might learn something here, other than how to spell.


willie

obispan


“I was verbally harassed by an individual who also liked to get into my personal space as well.”


Just out of curosity, have you seen this individual treat others the same way?


obispan

Nope , never saw the person again after we finally threw him out. And not saying this case is justified. The incident I recounted was unique in my experience but I was entitled to be where I was and not be harassed. Everyone needs to focus on themselves and not others.


slojustice

Hey have you folks considered that in the United States of America, you are innocent until proven guilty! Just because some guy loses a fight does not neccesarily mean he is a victim. None of us have all of the facts. But all you people want to do is get a rope and sring this guy up. Old brown what is your deal, I sense you were some badge heavy windbag who nobody liked working for at the ol’ FD. And Mary were you jilted at one time by a fireman? The comments on this are overly agitated to the point of hysteria. Let the evidence play out and see what our court sytem does with this. Maybe Jory is obnoxious and he stuck his nose where it did not belong and he was the aggressor. I bet he thinks twice next time he makes the decision to get involved with a private family matter.


zaphod

A verbal assault deserves only a verbal defense, no one deserves a beating for words. Mason has all the tell tales of malignant narcissism by rationalizing Mason’s behavior you reveal a bit of this disorder yourself, I think you are projecting your own self loathing on Mason’s detractors including OldBrown..


zaphod

this ‘malignancy’ also scales up to a national level (paging Dr Reich) .


standup

O.K. Mr. cop covering up for another public servant. Enough of your B.S. If, and that’s a big if, Mason didn’t start it, I don’t think he needed to send the guy to the hospital through repeated pummeling. Mason is a loose cannon. Just ask the witnesses when he hit Al Beavers over the head with a bottle at the wedding.


slojustice

I am sorry, but your amateur detective skills are just that amateur. I am not a cop. I am just someone who is not interested in not playing games with other peoples lives. If you are interested in the truth, you should wait to see what evidence comes out in the trial, if there ever is one. So mr standup if you happened to be in that bathroom and saw the whole thing you need toget on the witness list. Until then you should keep your uninformed opinions to yourself.


Maxfusion

Based on the responses (thumbs down) to my 9:44 post I’m sorry to state that only 1 out of every 3.6 Central Coast residents can define sarcasm. Based on this revelation I’ll refrain from my usual rant concerning the state of the California school system out of deference to its victims.


r0y

Based on this post, I am not sorry to say that you are pretty self-absorbed.


willie

As aweful as the photos are, I am glad (priviledged) to be able to see the facts rather than to hear it second hand censored (I do want to know).

Thank you CCN.


willie

As aweful as the photos are, I am glad (priviledged) to be able to see the facts rather than to hear it second hand censored (I do want to know).

Thank you CCN.


mspalabra

Google the Firefighter Code of Ethics. “…I will at all times, respect the property and rights of all men and women, the laws of my community and my country, and the chosen way of life of my fellow citizens.


I recognize the badge of my office as a symbol of public faith, and I accept it as a public trust to be held so long as I am true to the ethics of the fire service. I will constantly strive to achieve the objectives and ideals, dedicating myself to my chosen profession–saving of life, fire prevention and fire suppression…”


Mason should resign and save the taxpayers the added legal expense of terminating him.


Typoqueen

I would think that they have live up to certain ethical standards. They come to our schools and teach our children and our children look up to them, they should have to maintain good ethics as they are role models.


Thanks for the Google info.. I agree, Mason should leave.


MaryMalone

QUOTING TYPOQUEEN:

They come to our schools and teach our children
and our children look up to them, they should have to maintain good ethics as they are role models.”


OMG. That’s right!


Well, that has to stop right now. Since the SLOFD and its chief cover up for violent thugs like Mason in their ranks, there is no telling what other kind of menaces are present in the SLOFD that we REALLY don’t want around children.


What other types of criminals do they cover up for? The possibilities are chilling.


I know not all firefighters and police officers are criminals, but are finding out (with many thanks to CCN and NO thanks to the Tribune) about more and more of them are. Worse, in the cases we find out about, these criminals are coddled by their chiefs and fellow workers, and NONE of their fellow professionals speak out against what these criminals have done.


Sorry, but I have to say it. It takes only two people to form a conspiracy, and there are far more than two people involved in these coverups of crimes.


Surely the situation in SLO and SLOCo is appropriate for FBI investigation.


Our first responders, who are supposed to protect us, are instead commiting violent crimes against us, and their peers say nothing and cover it up.


There is absolutely no telling how many of these crimes we don’t know about. How many innocent citizens have been killed or permanently damaged by our first responders?


It is clear that the local governments, SLOCity and SLOCounty are not going to do one damned thing to stop these assaults by their first-responder employees.


There’s really no choice but to seek help from the feds, and it seems that the FBI would be the appropriate agency to conduct the investigation.


r0y

I know it is not popular with this case, this guy; but, there are always a FEW bad apples that spoil the bunch.


I read this comment and thought it a bit over-reactionary. Whether the feds need to be involved (or the state), I cannot say, but I don’t think our children, who see the FD at their Friday auditorium “ceremonies,” are in any kind of danger is pretty darn remote.


Besides, I’ll bet that even Mason could BS his way through a “make sure your smoke detectors have batteries” speech to the kids.


mspalabra

Mason took a sworn oath, “…I will at all times, respect the property and rights of all men and women, the laws of my community and my country, and the chosen way of life of my fellow citizens.


I recognize the badge of my office as a symbol of public faith, and I accept it as a public trust to be held so long as I am true to the ethics of the fire service. I will constantly strive to achieve the objectives and ideals, dedicating myself to my chosen profession–saving of life, fire prevention and fire suppression.”


…saving of life…The Firefighter Code of Ethics doesn’t say, “while on-duty.” Mason should resign and save the taxpayers unnecessary legal expenses to remove him from his position.


LittleAcorn

I’m hoping that Brigham hits Mason with charges or a civil suit.


r0y

There is likely a 100% chance of a civil suit. Especially if the criminal one is successful (though most here have no faith in the SLO court system much).


This is judicial suicide if put in front of a jury here. It’d probably be moved out of town.


oldbrown

I’m in no way defending Mason’s actions but it was off-duty rather than on-duty and that makes a difference. The FD can’t take any action against him unless he’s convicted of the assault charge. If the FD has a clearly written policy regarding off-duty conduct then they might be able to initiate disciplinary proceedings but even if they do he’ll be represented in those proceedings by his union. If he’s convicted and goes to jail then it’s a done deal as far as his career is concerned. If he’s not convicted then the fire administration has a tough case on their hands. Judging by the comments on this story most people want him fired. I’m just pointing out that it’s not as easy as some may think. I think you can be assured that the fire administration is getting their ducks in a row while awaiting the outcome of the charges. This has the potential to be even messier.


stickysit

For the most part you are correct oldbrown, it would be a tougher road if he is not convicted, but there is a nice little catch all where people (government employees) can be terminated for, “bringing discredit to the hiring authority.”


oldbrown

I agree with you Stick but the problem is defining “discredit”. I know from experience that writing policies that cover every eventuality can be very difficult. It’s even more difficult to anticipate every loophole. But in theory I wholeheartedly agree with you.


stickysit

I would imagine (hope) most county and city entities would mirror the Government Code. The section I was referring to is GC19572. There is a whole litany of things a State employee can be terminated for. Subsection (t) is the specific section I was referring to…….(t) Other failure of good behavior either during or outside of duty hours that is of such a nature that it causes discredit to the appointing authority or the person’s employment.

Any conduct by an employee, either on- or off-duty, that could easily disrupt or impair the public service or has the potential for causing discredit to the department if it were known by members of the public. Includes committing criminal acts that bear rational relationships to the employment. The focus is on the potential for destructive consequences, not on whether the conduct is intentional. For peace officers the connection to employment is presumed for off-duty criminal conduct.


oldbrown

Stickysit,

Once again we’re in agreement. However, here’s the reality I witnessed. And the FF’s on this board will blast me for what I’m about to write although they know it’s true. The union I belonged to while still working seemed to have a mission to defeat any attempt by the administration to impose disciplinary action. My dept. had one particular loose cannon and there had been many attempts at severe discipline for years but they all failed due to union representation. The result of this guy being able to remain on the job eventually led to a major embarrassment for the dept. (not the union) because he was arrested and jailed for a major felony. Only then could the dept. fire him. And typically the arrest and conviction was a newspaper headline and he shamed all of us. I wish I knew the answer to this problem but I don’t.


stickysit

OldBrown, yes we are definitely on the same page and you are absolutely dead on about most of the unions! After the adverse action is done, they will try to find any angle to get out of it, then on to the Skelly hearing which typically reduces the penalty and if not there off to SPB. And then of course they will try to sue civilly. When unions were established I personally believe it was the right thing for workers, but it utterly amazes me the “power” some of these unions have, and how the “new” generation (I refer to them as the “me” generation) of union employees feel it is either their right or it is owed to them! I better stop there before I get on my soapbox ;-)


oldbrown

Stickysit,


It’s obvious that you know the “system” as well as I do, maybe better. And we both know the system has been broken for quite some time and I don’t see any “fix” in sight.


Flipside

Oldbrown,

You are spot on with your comments and observations. Disregard some of the poster on this site.Trying to explain anything that has to do with reality is a lost cause.


MaryMalone

Well, Oldbrown, it seems you and the “evil unions” you try to portray now are working for the same cause…making excuses for why the courts will let Mason go free, and why we, the taxpayers who pay these violent thugs with badges will have to meekly accept the fact that there are violent criminals working for our PDs and FDs, and we have zero recourse in protecting ourselves from those we pay to protect and serve us.


One thing for sure. We have to stop allowing police officers and firefighters into our schools. If they have violent thugs like Mason and Cramer, who both the chiefs and peers cover up for, there is no telling what other kind of criminals they have. Perhaps pedophiles? How would we know? Y’all would just cover up for them, wouldn’t you?


Mjd

what the heck whats the problem with them going into schools? wouldn’t you rather your kids know what to do in a fire then not know?


Typoqueen

One of the problems is that newspapers are brought into 3rd grade and up classrooms for the kids to read and go over articles. Some of my kids were very into current issues and listened to the news from a fairly young age. I don’t want my kids reading about firemen beating people till they’re close to death. ‘Oh mom, the guy that almost beat that guy to death came in our classroom today, I want to grow and be a fireman just like him’. Not just that, who knows what this guy might do if he’s at a school and a kid says something he doesn’t like. It’s obvious the guy has issues, I wouldn’t want him near my kids.


Mjd

I’m talking about firemen in general not this fireman


MaryMalone

OMG. Are you fracking kidding me?


Look at the photos!


Here are the urls for the photos in case you need to refer to them in the future, perhaps print them out so you can be reminded of what you are trying to spin into unicorns and pink hearts for the SLOFD and its violent-thug-with-a-badge, John Ryan Mason:


TOP PHOTO:

http://calcoastnews.com/images/2011/09/Jory-Brigham3.jpg


MIDDLE PHOTO

http://calcoastnews.com/images/2011/09/Jory-Brigham3.jpg


BOTTOM PHOTO:

http://calcoastnews.com/images/2011/09/Jory-Brigham4.jpg


Do you not realize–or do you not CARE–that Brigham’s life will be changed from this point forward? That he will have injuries he will have to deal with for the rest of his life? Thanks to SLOCity FF Mason, Briham will very likely have pain and headaches for the rest of his life…if not much worse. He will have physical reminders of the damage Mason did in his violent attack. Worse, Brigham will have at least some form of PTSD over this horrific attack perpetrated by the SLOCity FD pampered and coddled Mason.


And the day-to-day things…like having to go through special scanning every time he wants to fly someplace.


It is predictable that Brigham will feel vulnerable and fragile for quite awhile after this–perhaps for the rest of his life. Hw will his relationship with his children and wife change after this?


Mason got put on cush desk duty after he tried to kill Brigham. How are Brigham’s bills getting paid now that he can’t work?


Mason attempted to kill Brigham. You don’t hurt someone so badly that they need five metal plates to hold their face and skull together afterwards without intending to kill them. Brigham came very, very close to being killed by Mason.


Look, it seems clear to me that you are trying to lay the groundwork for the usual SLOFD, SLOCity and SLO courts typical hand-job treatment of the violent thugs in the ranks of their FDs and PDs.


It sounds like you believe Mason will be acquitted (and perhaps given a Badge of Honor from Chief Hines, and voted Firefighter of the Year by his fellow City firefighters–Maybe the City will hold a parade in Mason’s honor), and are trying to prepare the taxpayers who pay his wages to, once again, be shown that, if one of these FD or PD violent thugs attacks a citizen, we have absolutely no recourse.


So don’t you even try to start the legal parsing of descriptions. Believe me, with the Citry defending Mason (which Mason won’t have to pay for), he and the City’s lawyers don’t need your help in saving their violent thug, John Ryan Mason, from getting rightfully sentenced to prison for his violent assault on Brigham.


Dogpound

Just so you know, Mason is on his own for his legal defense. The City will not pay for it. If he belongs to a Union and pays Union dues, then usually they get legal defense as part of that dues amount. Unions differ; however, as to how that works. If “the incident” is outside of employemnt, then the Union legal defense does not cover it. In any event, Mason is not getting legal defense from the City of SLO. Not knowing many of the facts in this case, I would say Mason is going to have an uphill battle defending himself. If the accusations are accurate, he needs to be fired, jailed, sued…..in that order.


MaryMalone

Wouldn’t you be surprised if the SLOCity FD didn’t have an employment clause concerning off-duty conduct?


Regarding the “fire administration has a tough case on their hands” if Mason isn’t convicted: I would be very surprised if he has not acted against on-duty conduct standards, wouldn’t you?


But then, it would be hard for us to know since y’all seem to like to cover up for co-workers, no matter what they do.


I posted in another folder here previously (about another violent psychopathic first responder, police officer Cramer) that even if the PD has only one violent psychopath in their group, if the other “good” cops coverup for the “bad cop,” the “good cops” then become tainted by the acting of covering up…making them “bad cops,” too.


The same goes for firefighters. The ones who participate in the coverup and do not come forward are, at the very least, guilty of covering up a crime and perhaps conspiracy to coverup a crime.


Mjd

how did cnn get these pictures


MaryMalone

If they were submitted as evidence, they are in the public domaine (unless the Court, for special reasons, precludes them from public view).


racket

Thank you for your input, Oldbrown. The fact that you have “been there” lends creedence to your posts that many others (myself included) lack. I appreciate the insight.


MaryMalone

Sorry, I disagree.


At this point, OldBrown is having to stoop to parsing of definitions and clauses, trying to spin Mason’s violent attack against Brigham so that, when, as usual, the courts do NOTHING to hold accountable the employees of the FDs and PDs, we will have been prepared and brainwashed to meekly accept it.


After all–Oldbrown has experience, right? Well, John Ryan Mason and Scott Cramer have experience, too.


His experience does not make him credible. He may be credible in some things, but when he tries to spin Mason’s murderous attack on Brigham into moonbeams and cherry lollipops so that we will meekly accept the BS verdict we will surely get from the courts, we will be brainwashed into accepting it without a whimper.


racket

You sound as paranoid as me.


oldbrown

You’re welcome, Racket. But apparently Mary Moonbeam sees things differently.


SLOBIRD

If he is convicted can the taxpayers sue to get their money back. He is a fireman and is sitting at a desk doing clerical work – big difference in pay scale not to mention all though benefits (medical, retirement, overtime, etc) Where are the taxpayer’s right – oh yea, we agree to pay, give you benefits, overtime, sick leave, vacation time, etc. and you promise what? Considering the cost of the two drug cops, the issues involving Parkinson’s promotion, the cop that beat the disabled, this fireman, the City employee selling/buying back property (Ron Fario I think) and these are just the ones we know about in the past couple of years. What about the stuff we don’t know about. The cost of all of this on the taxpayers (council, admistration meetings, attorney fees, unproductive time) backs and some should pay back. Just saying!