Gesell lawyers up for employment dispute with SLO

May 13, 2015
Steve Gesell

Steve Gesell

San Luis Obispo Police Chief Steve Gesell, who is currently on paid administrative leave, has retained a Pismo Beach lawyer who is arguing the city has no good cause to terminate Gesell’s contract.

On Friday, City Manager Katie Lichtig placed Gesell on paid administrative leave after she was unable to agree on a separation settlement with the police chief. Lichtig and City Attorney Christine Dietrick are now negotiating a settlement with Gesell, after receiving instruction to do so during a closed session San Luis Obispo City Council meeting Tuesday.

Gesell’s attorney, David P. Warren, delivered a letter to Dietrick during the public comment period of Tuesday’s meeting. The letter, which is dated May 1, states that there is no go cause for the city to sever its relationship with Gesell, and the police chief does not want to leave his position.

“We are very concerned that the council is being led to believe that there is a mutual agreement to end the relationship. This is simply not the case,” Warren’s letter states. “I was told that it had gone beyond working it out and that Ms. Lichtig intended to sever the relationship.”

City sources have told CalCoastNews that Gesell is being released from employment because of irreconcilable differences with Lichtig. Gesell has been under fire publicly for charging the city for family dining, as well as for allegedly having illegal ticket quotas.

If an agreement is not reached, sources say Gesell could disclose damaging information about the city, some of which could implicate Lichtig.

If the city terminates Gesell for reasons other than misconduct, malfeasance or criminal negligence, he is due a severance of at least six months of his salary and benefits, which equals $132,532. Warren notes that financial obligation in his letter to Dietrick.

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  1. CentralcoastRN says:

    Do you know what gets me? Not that long ago, Calcoastnews featured a story of a man who robbed a bank. He went in to the bank wearing a pink pony backpack and made no real effort to disguise himself. He was blind in one eye from stabbing himself in that eye because he was so freaking crazy. In the determination hearing, his psychiatrist was saying he was not fit to stand trial because his was mentally unstable and the man began to eat his own feces inside of the court building in front of the jurors. I am sure I would link it if I wanted to, but I am not that motivated.

    My point is this; if society, the judicial system, the police, et al want to hold someone like the afore mentioned man to a standard of accountability such that he must answer for his crimes when he is broke and completely mentally ill, then why can’t GESELL??????? Gesell has intelligence, education; he can read, he doesn’t eat his own poop…… we KNOW he eats well because we have RECEIPTS. He is not stuck with the public defender. So why is he getting more protection than our weakest and most vulnerable citizens?

    Why is he not being held to the same standards that others are being held? That is what I demand to know!

    (3) 7 Total Votes - 5 up - 2 down
  2. Slowerfaster says:

    Republicans in action !

    Another crook caught, and gets paid to go away !

    When will you people learn ? Or do you really LIKE being screwed by these asshats ?

    (-3) 13 Total Votes - 5 up - 8 down
    • Citizen says:

      So, you think that Jan Marx and Katy Litchig and the SLO City Attorney and Steve Gesell are all Republicans?
      Or do you just think that lying your head off is cool. Where did you get your information? From the cesspool of your imagination?

      (8) 10 Total Votes - 9 up - 1 down
    • justbeware says:

      Keep it up slowerfaster, guys like you, and A. Hill are perfect examples of why dems are switching to decline to state.

      (1) 5 Total Votes - 3 up - 2 down
    • Cindy says:

      STOP turning this into a partisan issue. One has nothing to do with the other.

      (0) 4 Total Votes - 2 up - 2 down
  3. Cindy says:

    Litchig should be terminated. We all have her to thank for a costly payout because of her support of Gesell when he was cheating us on his expense accounts. Why didn’t she just bring out the entire truth back in February rather than collude with the head of Finance to downplay and net out the extent of his misappropriations. Go back and refer to the e-mails that CCN revealed surrounding the discourse between Litchig, Padilla and Gesell before they disclosed their findings.

    If they had taken action then rather than cover up as much as possible, we wouldn’t be having to pay out over 100K now. Litchig, you’re a weasel and you need to go too.

    (26) 28 Total Votes - 27 up - 1 down

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