Public officials tied to cyber harassment of CCN

September 29, 2016
Aaron Ochs

Aaron Ochs

Update: Maria Kelly said Aaron Och’s allegation that she helped launch Cal Coast Fraud is false.

By CCN STAFF

Testimony in a libel suit has revealed that government officials or their significant others have shared information and participated in the online harassment of CalCoastNews reporters, their family members, friends, colleagues and acquaintances.

Aaron Ochs, the operator of Cal Coast Fraud, testified in a deposition that he regularly converses with San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Adam Hill about CCN through Facebook messaging. In addition, Ochs said Oceano Community Services District Director Matt Guerrero, former Los Osos CSD Director Maria Kelly and Lynette Tornatsky, the wife of Los Osos CSD Director Lou Tornatsky, have provided content for the Facebook page which was created in an effort to get CCN to discontinue its reporting.

Since its launch in early 2014, posters on Cal Coast Fraud have falsely referred to CCN staff and reporters as having been diagnosed with mental illness. Other posts have falsely claimed that CCN staff are felons. CCN staff have been called c***s and whores. And, at times, participants in Cal Coast Fraud have discussed physically harming reporters.

On Tuesday, Ochs admitted under oath that his claims that CCN staff have been diagnosed with mental illness were not true or simply conjecture on his part. He also testified that his claims that CCN staff are felons were not true. His fraud claims were conjecture on his part.

Ochs was asked for evidence he had that showed CCN reporters had been diagnosed with mental illnesses. Ochs said he had no documentation. But, Ochs noted, Supervisor Hill had referred to a CCN reporter as crazy.

Ochs said he is aware that CCN reporters are not felons.

Ochs has repeatedly claimed that CCN is being investigated for fraud. Ochs said the fraud investigation was one that he himself had mounted. He was investigating emotional fraud, Ochs said.

Ochs complained about stories regarding “children.” In 2011, then Los Osos CSD Director Maria Kelly’s boyfriend’s son was arrested for felony DUI. Information from court records following the DUI exposed a possible conflict of interest for Kelly. Kelly’s board had negotiating with her boyfriend Paavo Ogren who then worked for the county.

Maria Kelly

Maria Kelly

Ochs said Kelly helped launch Cal Coast Fraud after stepping down from the Los Osos CSD Board.

Maria Kelly said Och’s allegation that she helped launch Cal Coast Fraud is false. However, when asked if she provided any of the content, Kelly refused to answer.

Within hours of the launch of Cal Coast Fraud, Hill was asking people to participate on the page that included posts claiming CCN reporters needed to lose court cases in order to protect the county from the stories CCN produces.

Cal Coast Fraud regularly produces rhetoric supporting a lawsuit filed by Charles Tenborg filed against CCN. In text messages, Supervisor Hill has told CCN advertisers he is working with Tenborg to destroy CCN through the lawsuit.

While Ochs and Hill have repeatedly made claims that support Tenborg’s case while claiming reporters lied, they have harassed CCN advertisers in what appears to be an attempt to put CCN out of business and keep it from being able to fund a proper legal defense.

Because of this, CalCoastNews is seeking to raise money to pay for deposition expenses through the fundraising site GoFundMe. Hill is scheduled for a deposition next month.

Ochs testified that Tenborg has asked him if he wanted to join in funding the lawsuit against CCN.

In an attempt to expose the ongoing defamation campaign, in early 2015, CCN published “Is Morro Bay parks official a government troll?”

“Ochs, through Facebook and several websites, has made numerous false claims alleging specific people are felons, or diagnosed mentally ill,” the Feb. 23, 2015 article says.

An attorney firm shared by both Ochs and Tenborg, Kerr & Wagstaffe out of San Francisco, responded with the threat of another costly lawsuit if the story was not retracted. In the letter, the attorney claims Ochs had not written that reporters were felons or diagnosed mentally ill.

“The article further accuses Mr. Ochs of making numerous false claims that people are felons or diagnosed mentally ill,” according to the March, 12, 2015 letter from James Wagstaffe. “That is not true and it is particularly defamatory because Mr. Ochs has publicly, and repeatedly, discouraged any discrimination on the basis of mental state.”

It is unclear what Wagstaffe meant by discouraged or if they were aware their threat was unfounded. Several months earlier, Ochs wrote, “For anyone who is wondering, we have decided not to publish any personal information about Velie, including her diagnosed mental condition.”

Earlier this year, Ochs posted questions to be asked in admissions and depositions and the timing of the depositions before Tenborg’s attorneys had sent the material to CCN reporters and their attorneys.

Oceano Board Member Matt Guerrero

Oceano Board Member Matt Guerrero

CCN’s attorneys asked who gave Ochs the deposition and admissions information. But, Ochs claimed he was protected by journalism shield laws, even though he admitted he was not a journalist. Ochs then refused to disclose his source.

Attorneys for CCN told Ochs if he did not identify the source, they would ask a judge to compel him. Ochs then said, “Matt Guerrero.” Ochs went on to say that as an attorney Guerrero was able to get the information out of court records.

However, information about admissions and depositions is not part of the court record and could not be found in court files.

Guerrero, a candidate for a San Luis Obispo County Superior Court judgeship, said later that he had not provided Ochs any information about the Tenborg case.

Guerrero also has participated in the online harassment of CCN.

Shortly after the Cal Coast Fraud Facebook page was created, Guerrero was one of the first people to “like” the page. For months, he participated by giving “thumbs up” to degrading and defamatory posts on Cal Coast Fraud.

CCN reported several times on financial irregularities involving Oceano CSD district managers who Guerrero voted to hire. In all, three managers have been terminated for overpaying themselves with district funds.

Before filing the lawsuit against CCN, Tenborg said he discussed his plan with both supervisors Hill and Bruce Gibson.

Tenborg was questioned about his communication with Hill. Asked when he last spoke to Hill, Tenborg said it had been about a year and a half ago, but then disclosed they had last exchanged emails just several days earlier.

Even so, Tenborg said he had not shared inside information about the timing for depositions or the questions to be asked with anyone.

Following is an Aaron Ochs Facebook post with two loyal followers, including Lee Collins, the director of San Luis Obispo County’s Department of Social Services.

ochs-post-2

Cyber bullying of female journalists has increased along with participation in Twitter, Facebook and Topix. Of female journalists polled, almost two-thirds have experienced intimidation, threats or abuse in relation to their work, according to the International Women’s Media Foundation and the International News Safety Institute, December 2013.


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shudacuda

Disgusting slime……


fhill123

There is no room for such puerile behavior and use of foul language is indicative of people who are inarticulate and deserve no forum!


TrumpChannelonDisqus

California’s elected officials are mandated to complete a 2 hour ethics course upon taking office. Clearly Adam Hill didn’t complete his state mandated Ethics requirement to so blatantly throw his weight around, in violation of the public trust his taxpayer funded office affords. What a great opportunity to replace this taxpayer liability before he joins the growing list of California Democrats fined and convicted for criminal activities while in office. Vote Dan Carpenter if you don’t want taxpayers on the hook for an elected official’s criminal negligence.


RawHoney

Adam Hill took the course and checked the box but never never never does he ever become ethical!


fhill123

But he does have a lot of weight to throw around!!


TrumpChannelonDisqus

Yikes! The more I learn about Adam Hill, the more bewildered I get how he was elected Supervisor in the first place?


Adam Hill doesn’t understand ex-parte is unethical? “Aaron Ochs, the operator of Cal Coast Fraud, testified in a deposition that he regularly converses with San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Adam Hill about CCN through Facebook messaging. ”


Adam Hill claims to be a Liberal. A Democrat, but he’s threatened and publicity humiliated a CalCoastNews contributor, who was a Democrat and shared his liberal views? Misogyny is so rampant among men in the Democrat party. They say one thing, but through their actions demonstrate they don’t value independent women or their rights.


Adam Hill is running for re-election? This is our chance to elect Dan Carpenter and clean house.


south

If you don’t know how Adam Hill got elected you have not been following the choices that District 3 makes. Evelyn Delany, Peg Pinard, Adam Hill. On occasion, sanity drops in a Shirley Bianchi and Jerry Lenthal, but not typically. To the D3 voter, Adam Hill is the Man and most smart money is on him retaining his seat in this district. This is why all the developer money is funneled to him to campaign limits and his wife’s projects which are unlimited.


pasodowny

Oh good, I was waiting for an Adam Hill shoe to drop! Looking forward to his October deposition and the CCN play by play! Thanks Aaron! You’re the ginger who delivers!


Moss_on_Stone

“To be sure, there is a certain nobility in shaming public officials who try to keep public documents from the public, or in exposing a greedy corporation that abuses its lowest paid workers.


But that’s shaming for the purpose of holding the powerful accountable.


Shaming with a noble goal is journalistic. Let’s call that good shaming. And shaming soley for the sake of shaming is bad shaming. This American Life recently devoted a whole episode to it. One example was a riveting phone conversation where comedian Lindy West asked one of the meanest trolls ever to explain his horrible behavior. The troll, who West allowed to remain anonymous, created a fake Twitter account for West’s dead father, with a bio that claimed he was embarrassed by his daughter.”


http://www.poynter.org/2015/journalism-and-public-shaming-some-guidelines/326097/


Moss_on_Stone

Anyone who uses the word “blog” in reference to CalCoastNews is affected by the misinformation campaign or is part of it. By all standards CCN is not a Blog, the term is used in a derogatory way. A form of slut


“A blog (a truncation of the expression weblog)[1] is a discussion or informational website published on the World Wide Web consisting of discrete, often informal diary-style text entries (“posts”). ”


Just another part of the misinformation campaign of team calcoastfraud/slotruth.


Sore Throat

Aaron Ochs and Charles Tenborg’s attorney Kevin Clune acts as if he supports women’s rights. He is the attorney for Denise Huskins, the women kidnapped and wrongly blamed by police for setting up her kidnapping. Clune claims he supports her rights against being wrongly accused.


But here in SLO, he threatens those who attempt to fight back against the constant demeaning lies and threats made by the Aaron Ochs and Adam Hill crowd.


Does he support his client buying Google and Facebook ads that claim CCN reporters are mentally ill and liars as they attempt to taint the jury pool? Was he in on the discussions?


I have seen ads almost every day this week demeaning CCN reporters with what Kevin Clune is aware are lies, but do facts matter or is he only motivated by money? Does he support calling women mentally ill whores, anything to win.


And Adam Hill has boasted of his participation in the case. But the attorney claims it is only Charles Tenborg. So why Adam Hill and Bruce Gibson were socializing with Judge Tangerman and recommending him for a Governor appointment to the appellate court, they were pretending not to be involved in the case. Thankfully, Tangerman received his appointment and was removed from the case.


Someone needs to report Kevin Clune to the state bar and Judge Tangerman to the judicial review.


Kevin Clune should maybe ask his mother what she thinks of him supporting clients that hate and demean women.


Moss_on_Stone

Follow the money!


Who paid for unemployed Aarons lawyer, who is the same as Tenborg’s.


Who paid for the facebook boosting of Aarons new anti CCN website, the latest of 4 or 5 web sites more if you include all of the facebook twitter, tumbler pages etc.


Is Tenborg aware how much more socially damaging/embarrassing information will come out of the testimony and filed subpoenas?


Same for Matt Guerrero, Maria Kelly and Lynette Tornatsky and the others.


“The Streisand effect is the phenomenon whereby an attempt to hide, remove, or censor a piece of information has the unintended consequence of publicizing the information more widely, usually facilitated by the Internet.”


Thomas A

“Before filing the lawsuit against CCN, Tenborg said he discussed his plan with both supervisors Hill and Bruce Gibson.”


James Wagstaffe’s affiliation with Team Adam Hill and PG&E lawyers, Adamski Moroski, while he defends Aaron Ochs, is pretty damning I would say.


con·spir·a·cy

kənˈspirəsē/Submit

noun

a secret plan by a group to do something unlawful or harmful.


Tic toc tic toc…


Fire Adam Hill.


Moss_on_Stone

“A smear campaign is an intentional, premeditated effort to undermine an individual’s or group’s reputation, credibility, and character. Like negative campaigning, most often smear campaigns target government officials, politicians, political candidates, and other public figures. However, private persons or groups may also become targets of smear campaigns perpetrated in companies, institutions, the legal system, and other formal groups.


Smear tactics differ from normal discourse or debate in that they do not bear upon the issues or arguments in question. A smear is a simple attempt to malign a group or an individual with the aim of undermining their credibility.


Smears often consist of ad hominem attacks in the form of unverifiable rumors and distortions, half-truths, or even outright lies; smear campaigns are often propagated by gossip magazines. Even when the facts behind a smear campaign are demonstrated to lack proper foundation, the tactic is often effective because the target’s reputation is tarnished before the truth is known.


Smears are also effective in diverting attention away from the matter in question and onto the a specific individual or group. The target of the smear typically must focus on correcting the false information rather than on the original issue.


Smear tactics are considered by many to be a low, disingenuous form of discourse; they are nevertheless very common.”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smear_campaign