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One of San Diego’s most disgraced mayors has gotten the due process he demanded, and it will cost him dearly. In return for three guilty pleas to criminal charges Tuesday, a plea agreement allows ex-Mayor Bob Filner to avoid prison and instead get probation, house arrest and psychological treatment.
Filner admitted to a felony count of false imprisonment and two counts of misdemeanor battery, all in regard to his physical interactions with women. He will not be able to run for public office again.
• “So much for that lynch mob,” writes L.A. Times columnist Robin Abcarian, rapping the Filner apologists who saw a grand conspiracy against the former mayor.
Abcarian also notes a recent story by VOSD and our news partner NBC 7 San Diego: We asked the three main mayoral candidates if they’d been accused of sexual harassment. They all said no, and our interviews with former co-workers and employees didn’t turn up signs of problems.
When Faulconer Stood by Residents, Not Industry
• The City Council reaffirmed its vote to support a controversial plan for the future of the Barrio Logan neighborhood. You can read up on the ongoing debate here. Meanwhile, supporters of maritime industry continue to push for a referendum.
• Councilman Kevin Faulconer, who’s running for mayor, is prominently standing with business in the debate the Barrio Logan plan. But, as VOSD’s Scott Lewis notes, he’s sung a different tune in the past.
What’s different this time? “You have to look at each issue individually and come to your conclusion based upon what you think is the right decision and based on the merits,” Faulconer told us.
New Location for VOSD’s Mayoral Debate
Due to big interest, we’ve moved VOSD’s Nov. 5 mayoral debate to the Birch North Park Theatre where we’ll have more space. Get details here, and remember: It’s free! Come join the four men who would be mayor and moderator Scott Lewis.
Former SDSU Coach Sues over Firing
Beth Burns, the former San Diego State women’s basketball coach, has filed a wrongful termination claim against the university, claiming she was fired “without any legitimate cause,” the U-T reports.
Burns retired under mysterious circumstances in April, but now says she was forced out in connection because she “allegedly struck a subordinate.” The U-T has uncovered details about a pair of alleged incidents that seem to have resulted in a $250,000 settlement for an assistant coach.
The coach’s legal claim says she was sacked “in retaliation for her unwavering demands that SDSU put women’s basketball and men’s athletics on an equal footing.”
SDSU declined to comment on the claim but did defend its “gender equity record.”
Quick News Hits
• VOSD’s weekly Culture Report surveys an improved outlook on the financial front for local institutions, a new name for the symphony building, a potential closure for a respected nature center, a coffee brew-off and a visit from Priscilla (Queen of the Desert, if you must know).
• “The Pentagon’s last-minute cancellation of the Miramar Air Show this month during the partial government shutdown has cost the base as much as $700,000, according to preliminary figures,” the U-T reports.
• Valley Center’s local weekly newspaper is enduring a spot of bother, the U-T reports, as it adjusts to a new era in which much of its production is handled in … China. (!) The former editor’s cri de coeur about life under the paper’s new owner is well worth a read.
• “A cat-and-mouse game has unfolded in recent months between mountain bikers, joggers and hikers who enjoy using trails in the Del Mar Mesa Preserve, and state wardens who are handing out trespassing warnings and tickets,” Del Mar Times reports.
Here’s a fun quote: “All the criminals they get to chase down are people wearing Spandex.”
Oh dear. Never mind the rangers. Somebody call the fashion police!
Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego and vice president of the American Society of Journalists & Authors. Please contact him directly at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter: twitter.com/rdotinga.