You don’t rise to become the most powerful politician in the county without making enemies and making mistakes. It’s no surprise that Bonnie Dumanis has done both. As our reporting shows, she’s still at it.

In the third part of our series about Dumanis, we examine the claims of those who say she botches major cases and punishes those who cross her.

Colleagues claim she demoted a prosecutor because he told her to drop a high-profile case. Another prosecution of a politician went nowhere, as did a bid to investigate a county supervisor. A murder case and a molestation case collapsed too.

Most recently, she has ordered her office to blackball a Superior Court judge by blocking cases from appearing in his courtroom. She won’t say why.

For her part, Dumanis says she encourages dissent and defends her office’s public integrity unit and her decisions.

Tomorrow: State and county leaders have lauded Dumanis as an innovator with the statewide political clout to turn her ideas into reality.

In other news:

  • On Tuesday, we joined forces with our longtime partners at NBC 7/39 to begin an exciting new video effort: San Diego Explained. Each week, we’ll break down a complicated issue in our community and bring residents up to speed not only on what got us to where we are, but what to look for in the future.

    The first segment aired last night. The topic? The Chargers’ quest for a new stadium. You can watch it here.

  • And on that note, is an L.A. developer less interested in wooing the Chargers north? We parse his words.
  • You may have heard of “cancer clusters” — places, like neighborhoods or even individual blocks, where cancer rates are through the roof. There’s a lot of debate about whether they’re caused by the environment or just the products of coincidence.

    Now, researchers have pinpointed an autism cluster in the northwestern stretches of the city of San Diego. Should you freak out if you’re a parent? We offer some perspective.

  • In education, all that talk about San Diego schools no longer having a superintendent at the top is no longer operative.
  • Columnist Scott Lewis continues his interviews with thoughtful people about what 2010 holds for the city and county. In the latest installment, he talks to Walt Ekard, the county’s chief administrative officer.

    Ekard discusses his flirtation with another county, puts a high-profile local project in last place on his priority list and wisely declines to identify the most promising local leader. (“Do you really think I’m going to answer this question????????????”)

  • Our editorial cartoonist finds some irony in the hullabaloo over medical-marijuana shops. (By the way, the U-T reports that the San Diego City Council punted yesterday over how to regulate the dispensaries.)
  • Mmmm, donuts! Homer Simpson would drool over our Photo of the Day, which inspires the first-ever rap photo soundtrack, a song appropriately called “Sprinkle Me.” (A mischievous Twitterer suggested I link to the “Adam-12” theme song.)

Elsewhere:

  • CityBeat investigates a Bonsall spiritual leader whose holiday “E-Mails from Jesus” were published on a local news site. Her statements “make cult experts wary,” says CityBeat, which tracked down how much she made from followers of a group called The Stream.
  • CityBeat also devotes to cutbacks in local citizen review boards. An ACLU honcho says one board will be emasculated.

Check out that video. It’s a new way to get residents up to speed. Our reporters are on the radio, on TV, on Twitter, on Facebook, in your email and on the site. The next thing you know we’ll be talking out of your coffeepot.

— RANDY DOTINGA

Dagny Salas

Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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