Buried at the bottom of this story about Heather Fargo’s uphill battle against KJ’s celebrity status, the Bee’s Mary Lynne Vellinga mentions yesterday’s Padilla bombshell about KJ:
This week, Johnson has again had to contend with allegations of sexual misconduct with teenage girls in Phoenix and Sacramento. Charges were never brought in either case, but rival mayoral candidate Leonard Padilla on Tuesday distributed the police report in the Phoenix case to the press.
Yes, he had to contend with them again because they were reported on in the same paper after being dropped off by a very concerned political opponent. The Phoenix case was also reported on 13 years ago when it was news, but not by the Sacramento Bee, even later when Johnson took charge of a local high school. Does the Bee only report on stories that are dropped off in greasy envelopes delivered by hat-wearing, toothpick chewing drifters?
But the Bee never has to apologize for ignoring (assuming my amateur Google searching skills are reliable–I couldn’t find any Bee stories about the Phoenix case before this) what commenters here have pointed out was public information about Johnson, even though similar charges were brought up just last year at Sac High.
Of course, the Bee is not responsible when bad people do bad things. But one would hope your only local daily paper would think long and hard before printing something about a local candidate that is hand-delivered to them by a political opponent. And one would hope that current mayor Fargo would have to “contend” with things like the city’s budget problems (her name isn’t mentioned until the last two paragraphs), shady campaign finance maneuvers, her stupidity over the railyard debacle of ought seven, her extensive travel, or why the city’s murder rate has grown steadily while she has been mayor (except for 2003, which actually is the year KJ took over Sac High).
This being said, as I mentioned before, reading the PHXPD transcript of the “confrontation call” does not leave you with a good feeling. I definitely do not think this is a non-issue. In political terms it is probably the perfect storm, since KJ can keep pointing out that no criminal charges have been filed, but as long as the Bee can keep mentioning it–even in an article primarily about Fargo–the damage has been done.