SLO police chief to release her cell phone records

September 10, 2019

Chief Deanna Cantrell

By KAREN VELIE

San Luis Obispo Police Chief Deanna Cantrell has agreed to release her personal cell phone records in a criminal case that arose after the chief lost her pistol in the bathroom of an El Pollo Loco restaurant. [Cal Coast Times]

Cheyne Orndoff and Vannesa Bedroni face charges of child neglect after police searched their home without a warrant as they tried to locate the chief’s pistol. Peter Depew and Jason Dufurrena, attorneys for the couple, filed motions for the chief’s and other officers’ cell phone records to show that police did not follow proper procedures in the run up to the warrantless search of the home.

Orndoff objected to the search. Both he and Bedroni said they were with their two children in Atascadero at a medical appointment at the time that Cantrell lost her pistol. They were not at the El Pollo Loco, they said.

Police went ahead and searched the couple’s home even though Orndoff, who has a beard and a full head of hair, did not resemble a clean-shaven man seen in a surveillance video from the restaurant who actually had found and taken the chief’s pistol.

Police did not find the chief’s pistol in the house but, instead, charged the couple with child neglect claiming that the home was dirty.

Cantrell left her pistol in the bathroom of the El Pollo Loco restaurant about noon on July 10. In an attempt to get her gun back without the incident becoming public knowledge, Cantrell did not inform most patrol officers that she suspected someone had stolen her loaded gun until almost seven hours later.

Instead, Cantrell made a call with her cell phone to a dispatcher. A SLO police officer, who asked to remain anonymous to protect his employment, said Cantrell asked dispatcher Christine Steeb to call her back, cell phone to cell phone, in an apparent attempt to keep the call from being recorded.

“The call fell off so I called her back on my cell phone,” Steeb said.

And so, without a recording, a report of “lost property” was logged in at 2:09 p.m.

San Luis Obispo administrators hired two private attorneys to stop the release of the chief’s cell phone records, Roy Hanley of Atascadero to represent the city and Howard Liberman of Los Angeles to represent Cantrell.

During two hearings, Hanley argued the chief’s cell phone records could contain sensitive and personal information, and should not be released.

However, before a Sept. 5 hearing, Hanley and Liberman agreed to release the cell phone records. On Oct. 3, the attorneys will return to court to further discuss any issues with discovery.

On the day she lost her pistol, Cantrell checked surveillance footage at the restaurant as she tried to find her firearm. She saw that three people had entered the restroom after her, two of whom were still in the restaurant and did not have her gun, Cantrell said.

The third person, who was the first to enter the restroom after Cantrell left, was not in the restaurant. The man, later identified as 30-year-old Skeeter Carlos Mangan of Los Osos, was shown in the video – clean-shaven and balding.

An officer who was helping in the search for the “lost property” saw the video and said he recognized the man and provided a home address.

Shortly before 7 p.m., a group of five detectives were dispatched to Orndoff’s home and conducted the search over his objection. A detective who led the search told Orndoff that police did not need a warrant because, as the detective said erroneously, Orndoff was on probation.

After a reporter sent the chief a copy of the documents showing Orndoff was not on probation, the city released a statement saying officers could see inside the house from the front yard, as probable cause for a warrantless entry. If evidence of a crime is “in plain view” where police can see it without entering a property, no warrant is needed.

“In addition, the condition of the home that led to the arrests was visible from the front door,” according to a July 29 city statement in which the city concedes that Orndoff was not on probation.

However, SLO County Assistant Chief Probation Officer Robert Reyes refuted the city’s claim saying the inside of the home was not visible from the outside.

At a preliminary hearing scheduled for Oct. 17, prosecutors and defense attorneys will argue about the police department’s justification for entering the home without a warrant and if there is sufficient evidence to bring the case to trial.

Orndoff and Bedroni pleaded not guilty to all charges. In an attempt to raise money for their defense and for work needed at their home, Cheyne Orndoff posted a plea for assistance on GoFundMe.


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hold it what

The way i see it,

it does not matter whether you are a. man, woman, republican, democrat, independent, of any particular religious belief, atheist, agnostic, LGBTQ, rich, poor, or any race.

What matters is the actions you take, as a ‘person’, for a any situation you find yourself in.

We all make mistakes, some little, some big. As persons of character, we do the right thing.

We the people, elect the best people as leaders to keep, us safe, our cities safe and to make sure we are all abiding by our laws. this is what makes this country the best in the world.

When these laws are broken there are consequences, special attention when it is our leaders that break those laws or abuse the power that we have given them.

Those involved in this cover up and blatant abuse of power need to be brought to justice. But the only way this will happen is if ‘we the people’ make it happen. Everybody on this discussion is outraged, as I am, but we need to make everybody aware of this injustice and make those that can make a difference pay attention. we need to send the message that –

‘WE WILL NOT STAND FOR IT’

This story must not be forgotten, Our city is at risk.

Do I need to avoid going into SLO?

Do I need to be afraid of those people that should be protecting us?

Are they just thugs and liars with badges?

Are our elected leaders there to represent what we want or to protect the elite?

I believe there are good cops on the SLOPD force. They also need to be protected from the far reaches of corruption. they have families and bills just like all of us. They need to know they will not be putting their jobs at risk by coming forward.

They do put their lives at risk every day and I thank them for the hard job that they do.


Orndoff and Bedroni need our support, go to their gofundme page and contribute a buck or 2 or whatever.

if you can, get the word out to others, your friends your relatives or whomever, support comes in many different ways, but unfortunately money makes the biggest difference in fighting injustices, how sad, right?


Thank you


adustum

SLO is certainly a model – OF HOW NOT TO RUN GOVERNMENT!!


DocT

while we await the next version of the story to manifest itself…..


Let’s take a couple minutes to recap what we know so far, and make a few logical deductions from the same.


Chief Cantrell didn’t lock the gun inside the toilet paper dispenser.

Skeeter found the gun and returned it to the chief a few days later


Orndoff and Bedroni, who had nothing to do with Chief Cantrell forgetting to lock the safe, were said to have stolen the gun, despite there being no evidence whatsoever to support that theory. The brave, truthful and sincere officers who descended on Orndoff’s house to retrieve the stolen property:


1. did not have a warrant

2. knew they didn’t have the person(s) who stole their Chief’s gun from the El Pollo Loco gunsafe

3. searched the house without consent

4. falsely claimed Orndoff was on probation

5. arranged for CPS to kidnap their children

6 made false statements to fellow law enforcement regarding drugs in the house, which CPS used to kidnap and keep the kids.


Several versions of events have come out, but it is clear that Chief Cantrell did several things that uneducated, uninformed, non-public employees might think are questionable:


1. Took a long, long time to report she lost her gun

2. Phoned headquarters and asked them to return her call using personal cell phones

3. Made a statement on record that her call to headquarters “fell off.”

4. Failed to lock the toilet paper dispenser, thus storing her firearm in an unsafe manner.


Her car, which was being used by her son, was stolen in Santa Margarita….apparently by a naked woman who was found in the car in the Bay Area and was arrested…..for what? Stealing the car? Indecent exposure? We don’t know…..plus, it’s just a weird side story.


No one in the police department has come forward to contradict the chief, her several stories, or the unconstitutional behavior of their fellow officers.

—————————————————————————–

Questions if we assume the latest version of events is true:


1. Why isn’t there a bond measure being floated to upgrade the shoddy dispatch call center? This is literally a life-or-death issue and no one seems to care….it’s as if they don’t believe there’s a problem!!! We need an awareness campaign.


2. Could the officers actually see inside Orndoff’s house from the front yard as they claimed in version 2 of the official story? If so, what did they see that made them think they could break in and take the kids?


3. Why is the County listing people “on probation” when they are not?


——————————————–


If the latest version of events is not true and Chief Cantrell screwed up and made confusing (false) statements……


Why haven’t any of the “good cops” stepped up and put their lives and careers on the line (like they supposedly do every day) to expose the corruption in the department? Surely, the dozens of ‘good cops’ aren’t afraid of losing their jobs…..I mean, they’re not afraid of losing their lives, right?


——————————————-


Either the department is rotten from the top down, or the chief and her men are derelict by not making it a priority to fix the phone lines. Which seems more likely?


Neither options bode well for anyone who has to interact with SLO PD. Only a fool would call them for help. They’ll either drop the call, or take your kids illegally. Not good.


Paso_citizen

So here is the ‘new’ definition of transparency – put out just a little at a time, just enough to attempt to pacify the voters into thinking that all is kosher and above board. Well, that all sounds like defecation from a male bovine. The only thing that is transparent is the fact that SLO management will do anything and everything to cover this up and hope it just goes away. Little do they understand that it won’t; especially if they continue this little dribs and drabs of a story that should have been handled so very, very differently from the git-go. Only the truth will set you free. Not the truth as you would like everyone to believe. But when you have been doing CYA for so long – doing it any other way is just plain impossible..


ActaNonVerba

Make sure to check Cantrell’s burner(s) as well!


DocT

RE Cantrell getting an attorney or two:


She is wise to do this. I’d do the same thing. It’s her right. My only beef is that serf’s aren’t allowed their right to top-notch legal counsel and must use public defenders or GoFundMe (Orndorff’s) to deal with the legal system. Cantrell knows she needs help and it’s her right to get it.


Also, here’s a bit of legal advice for any serf’s who might be reading this: Cantrell, on the advice of her attorneys, will not make a single peep about this case. She won’t answer questions unless her attorneys are present and she won’t plead to a lesser charge after a few hours of “good-cop/bad-cop” interrogation. Serf’s often start talking and seem easily frightened into incriminating themselves. Take a lesson from the chief…..keep your mouth shut, admit nothing, and demand your right to counsel. Don’t utter a word in the presence of a cop without an attorney present.


RE Dropped calls


If calls to dispatch are “dropped” even once in a while, there is a huge problem. If the chief and the staff knows that cell to cell is a more reliable method of communicating important information than using the very expensive and special phone lines—which apparently drop calls—then no doubt there is a paper trail detailing this propensity to drop calls and a fervent search for a solution to the same. No doubt there’s record of repair people on the job trying to insure that life-and-death calls aren’t “dropped.”


There is no excuse for a high priority phone line to be LESS reliable than cell to cell. If this is the case, the PD has significant legal exposure for dropped 911 calls. When seconds count…..and a return call on the dispatcher’s personal cell phone is only minutes away…..


Chief Cantrell obviously understood that the special phone lines used by police dispatchers were unreliable and she took responsibility to insure that the important information got through…..I am 100% certain that a paper trail that documents the bad connections and propensity to “drop calls” will be discovered. Certainly the dispatchers have made many complaints about this and there has been an ongoing effort to fix the phone lines. Anything less would be a dereliction of duty and would show a pattern of unprofessional and careless conduct with regard to public safety.


No decent chief of police would put up with spotty phone service into the department.


kettle

“If the chief and the staff knows that cell to cell is a more reliable method of communicating important information than using the very expensive and special phone lines—which apparently drop calls—then no doubt there is a paper trail detailing this propensity to drop calls and a fervent search for a solution to the same.”


Lets not forget this is/was a state of the art command center we built (next to a massive gas line). So if there are dropped calls yes what is a huge problem. Also it took a few years to be able to track the patrol cars in the center, must be log of their location during the home invasion/probation search.


DocT

Perhaps the “state-of-the-art” command center is outdated now?


Surely something is wrong! If the command center is “SOTA” then by definition calls don’t “fall off.”


It says on the side of the patrol vehicles: “Service, Pride, Integrity.”


The Integrity part—to me at least—-means that all officers, starting with the Chief: “tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.” The massive amounts of integrity that the Chief and her team of dedicated, selfless officers are endowed with insures that we’re being told the truth about the dropped calls. This means that the command center is defective. It also means that a paper trail of repairs and diagnostics exists…because Integrity means nothing if it doesn’t mean the Chief tells the truth. See below.


The “Service” portion of the SLO PD’s mantra—to me at least—means that answering phone calls at the command center and getting officers to the right place at the right time in order to protect and serve the public is the most important thing the department can do. These brave men and women must be frustrated beyond comprehension knowing that their dispatch center drops calls and consequently can endanger lives that should be served with pride and integrity….


Finally, we’ve got Pride. This pride is what We, The People can count on. The SLOPD is so proud that there is NO POSSIBLE WAY they would stand for faulty communications in the most critical part of the department. Their pride and professionalism simply won’t countenance such a thing.


If anyone thinks that Chief Cantrell might be mis-remembering the facts, or perhaps mis-spoke about her call “falling off,” or in tried to skirt official policy in any way, need to remember one thing:


The police officers have Pride, Integrity and a focus on Service. If they thought their chief, or any single on of them, or the entire department wasn’t telling the truth, or didn’t frantically try to fix the command center…..then the entire mass of good, honest police officers would come forward and root out the unprofessional, lack of integrity in the department.


If we believe anything less, we’re basically saying that our local police don’t care so much about serving the public, lack the pride of professionalism and integrity. Even if only ONE SINGLE COP has integrity, this person would be blowing the whistle at the top of their lungs….if the chief wasn’t telling the truth.


So, based on these facts we know that Chief Cantrell is telling the truth, the phone systems are unreliable and the Orndorff’s home was so messy they could have been on a “hoarders” reality show.


Side note: What happened to the naked woman found in the Chief’s car last month?


Rambunctious

She should have been terminated for cause immediately after reporting her weapon was missing and she went to the wrong house in search of it….now she will become a huge liability for the city….before this is over it will be the tax payers that will pay for this mess…and the longer it goes on the more it will cost….


hold it what

just wondering how this applies to interrogating children without CWS and child psychologist present during the interrogation, does Susie Walsh hold such credentials that they are not needed?


Cmonnow

The whole thing continues to be so pathetic. The call dropped? Really? Uh…oh ok. Why does she have a freakin’ attorney from L.A.? Doesn’t SLO have public defenders already on the payroll? Hopefully you residents of SLO rise up and demand she be sent on her way. Then vote out the mayor at the next election and get your town back.


Humperdinck

It took two to dance around the mandated recorded phone line. So, subpoena the cell records from Christina Steeb. Once both of them used their cell phones while on-the-clock for police business the call became a work product. Put Steeb on the stand right after playing out loud the initial dispatch call that she said dropped out. I bet Steeb will sing like Celine Dion when facing a perjury charge.

I’ve done dispatch functions before. If a call drops out, you call right back from your workstation with the married headset you are wearing and use a preset speed dial for the Chief. Both the dispatcher and the Chief using their cell phone are willful procedure disregard acts, which would require discipline like suspension without pay or termination.

AT&T will have reliability records for premium priced priority phone lines like ones going to dispatchers. Those priority phone lines usually have a 21 digit line number starting with FDDA01xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx. There would be an expectation for a dispatcher to turn in a trouble tag with AT&T if a priority phone line experiences persistent trouble.