Sex, lies, video, and a city cover-up

September 5, 2014


Arroyo Grande police officer reports and city video tapes support allegations of a late night romantic rendezvous at City Hall between City Manager Steve Adams and a subordinate.

On July 3, shortly after Community Development Director Teresa McClish’s husband called 911 to report that his wife had not arrived home and he worried because she has a heart condition, police, after knocking repeatedly, entered and began searching the darkened building. As officers yelled McClish’s name, Adams walked from his office initially lying to officers, saying McClish was not in the building, according to police reports.

After officers noticed a partially-dressed McClish holding her clothes in front of her chest, Adams became angry with officers, according to officer reports.

“McClish was hiding behind the door as I reached the entry way of the office,” Senior Police Officer S. Day wrote. “She peeked her head from behind the door and appeared to be holding a shirt to her chest….she appeared to have been sleeping due to her hair being messed up and her eyes being droopy.”

In the past, Adams has been adamant about prohibiting romantic relationships with subordinate employees. Several years ago, he insisted on the termination of a female police officer who had a personal relationship with a lower-ranking member of the force.

However, in this case, city officials claim that police reports are incorrect, and that McClish and Adams were fully dressed and drinking tea when officers arrived. Several city officials claim police have manipulated the facts because of ongoing salary negotiations.

These claims led the daily paper to misreport officer statements until the memos were released Thursday in support of the coverup, police sources said.

Nevertheless, surveillance videos installed in 2012 support officer statements that McClish and Adams were having a secret rendezvous.

From the city’s video:

At 8:27 p.m., Adams and McClish leave the grand opening of Roberts Restaurant, which is across the street from City Hall, and walk to Rooster Creek for another glass of wine.

At 9:39, McClish walks across Mason Street and gets into her car parked at City Hall.

At 9:46, Adams crosses Mason Street about two car lengths from the brightly lit crosswalk. As he nears McClish’s car, several people leave Roberts Restaurant. Adams then turns and runs back across the street.

At 9:51, the people who departed Roberts Restaurant drive away, McClish flashes her car lights and Adams dashes back across the street towards McClish’s car.

Following the incident, the city attorney performed a four-hour investigation and determined that the officer reports were incorrect.

Deputy City Attorney Michael McMahon spoke at a city council meeting Aug. 26 and repeated McClish and Adams’ claims that they were fully dressed and drinking tea when officers arrived.

Arroyo Grande has paid out more than a million dollars in settlements and workers compensation because of sexual harassment claims against the city. In one case, former city councilman Ed Arnold was arrested for assaulting a city staffer with whom he and his wife were allegedly having a sexual relationship.

Arnold was then replaced by now San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Caren Ray. After being appointed to the Arroyo Grande City Council, Ray dropped out of an adult club where people drink alcohol, and run to a private location where some then disrobe. Ray called it normal adult behavior and noted that another city official was part of the same club.

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Steve Adams and Teresa McClish leave Robert’s Restaurant on July 3.










Arroyo Grande Memorandum 7-5-2014 by CalCoastNews

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Thank you Karen & Dan for staying on the story and presenting the facts to the public. Nasty stab by the Trib with their last 2 paragraphs, allowing Adams to give his defense. Video’s don’t lie, people do.

If they were just drinking tea, then there a)would have been lights on in the building, b) Adams would not have been agitated, c) Theresa would not have been hiding, and d) everyone would have had a great laugh that evening!

Tuesday’s meeting is very important that people come out. The council needs to know that these actions should not go unpunished. An unbiased investigation will evaluate the facts and see if any reprimands are due.

If the council votes to close this case and not investigate, then I feel they are withholding information from the public and twisting the truth. That should not be tolerated. Policies and rules are put into place for all employees, and those at the top should not have special treatment. It is not our business what two adults choose to do in their private lives, but in public buildings after hours, and then lying about it…that can not be tolerated.

AG residents— Tuesday is the City Council meeting. The honor of your presence is requested.

Arroyo Grande’s sexual harassment lawsuits and payments by the City go back to the late 1990s. The City has a long history. CalCoastNews needs to provide the list of how much the city paid out going back to the 1990s.

Thank goodness CCN is willing to go where no other “credible” news sources dare!

Photo clearly shows Steve’s shirt untucked, yet officers report that when he is confronted in City Hall his shirt is partially untucked, and he’s agitated. If the police simply interrupted an innocent tea party as the city investigation indicated, why would Mr. Adams be agitated?

I thought it was not legal to “give false or misleading information to law enforcement officers” Adams told police Teresa was not in the building and she magically appears.

Apparently the officer originally asked for Trish, not Teresa. When the officer corrected himself Steve was forced to admit that she was in his office. Is he going to pretend he didn’t know who they were looking for? Yes, she magically appears, holding something to her chest and peeking out from behind a door. Unbelievable that City officials do not find this unacceptable at City Hall.

The City of Arroyo Grande has a long history of finding sexual harassment acceptable. Go back to the 1990s and see how much has been paid out to resolve lawsuits.

Even more disturbing is how many sexual harassment claims are settled at worker’s comp claims to hide the payouts. Wait until we learn the real truth on that! AG has a lot of skeletons in the closet. We should be ashamed of ourselves for repeatedly voting in those who allow this to continue.

If that was John Q. Public, and not Adams, who lied to the police about McClish’s presence in Adams’ office, Mr. Public would have been treated much more harshly…might have even hauled into the police station.

Doesn’t the Police Chief answer to the City Manager? There must have been an interesting closed door meeting between the City Manager and Police Chief after the event. Possibly something like, “Chief, keep this quiet until after the City Council candidate filing date. Otherwise Otis Page will run and get votes to fire me and City Attorney.”

BINGO!!! I have it on good authority that your first three sentences are 100% correct.

Doesn’t everyone know that flashing you car’s headlights at someone is the universal symbol for ” I had too much to drink, let’s go over to your office to drink tea and sober up”

I thought it was the universal signal johns used to flash down prostitutes.

Apparently the Trib can no longer ignore this story. Their article today is very similar to what CCN reported more than a week ago.

AG city council meeting on Tuesday should be interesting. How will the City Attorney or Mayor Ferrara attempt to explain away Steve denying to police that Teresa was in the building?

Who believes these are the actions of two people simply having tea?

Surprise “you’re on big brothers camera”. Good thing for video!

AG is fortunate that Steve made the push to have the cameras installed!

Dishonesty from politicians? Why the big surprise?

…and their attorneys?

That is stipulated.

What do you want for $1200 and 4 hours???

The real kicker is that the investigation concluded there was no need to pursue the matter further as no policies had been violated and nothing improper occurred. The truth is that nothing PROPER took place.

A written report, for one thing.

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