Garden Grove, CA - The Garden Grove Police Association (“GGPA”) was disappointed to read the biased and factually inaccurate August 12, 2015 article by OC Weekly reporter R. Scott Moxley, in which he accuses GGPA of “brazen efforts to politically assassinate opponents”. The “political opponent” to whom Moxley refers is Garden Grove Mayor Bao Nguyen, and the “brazen effort” to which he refers is the release of a recorded June 19th communication between on-duty Police Sergeant Michael Viscomi, who is also president of GGPA, and an intoxicated Mayor Nguyen.
GGPA offers the following in response to the express or inferred contents of Moxley’s article:
- Sergeant Viscomi recorded his uniformed, on-duty communication with Mayor Nguyen pursuant to GGPD General Order 5.31, after Mayor Nguyen asked Sergeant Viscomi to respond to his residence on the heels of Mayor Nguyen’s report of a drunk subject disturbing the peace.
- GGPA did not take any action whatsoever to disclose publicly the existence of the recorded June 19th communication between Mayor Nguyen and Sergeant Viscomi. GGPA has no knowledge who publicly disclosed the existence of that recording.
- GGPA took no actions whatsoever to make, support, or encourage the public records act request seeking access to the recorded June 19th communication between Mayor Nguyen and Sergeant Viscomi. GGPA first learned of such request after it was submitted to the City.
- GGPA had nothing to do whatsoever with City Council’s decision to release the recorded June 19th communication between Mayor Nguyen and Sergeant Viscomi.
- GGPA has no political vendetta against Mayor Nguyen and is not seeking to “politically assassinate” him or any politician. The Association’s policy is to work collaboratively with all seated elected officials, regardless whether those officials were elected to office with or without GGPA’s political endorsement.
Moxley’s article fails to include relevant facts and context, the inclusion of either of which would portray the incident in an entirely different light. To the set the record straight, the following is what actually occurred on night of June 18th /early morning of June 19th, 2015:
- On June 18, 2015 at approximately 9:29 p.m., Mayor Nguyen telephoned the GGPD to initiate a call for service regarding a “drunk” subject who was disturbing the peace. Mayor Nguyen requested a telephone call follow-up.
- Several police officers investigated Mayor Nguyen’s call for service but were unable to locate the “drunk” subject. Sergeant Viscomi, who was on-duty and working patrol, called Mayor Nguyen to advise him that officers were unable to locate the “drunk” subject.
- On June 19, 2015, at approximately 1:18 a.m. (less than 4 hours later) Sergeant Viscomi received a telephone call from an unknown number. It turned out to be Mayor Nguyen, who asked Sergeant Viscomi to meet at a location on Shackleford Lane, which Sergeant Viscomi did not know at the time was Mayor Nguyen’s residence. Sergeant Viscomi also did not know the reason for the requested meeting.
- At approximately 1:27 a.m. Sergeant Viscomi arrived and activated his in-car video system per GGPD policy. He was greeted by Mayor Nguyen, who appeared intoxicated.
- Following the communication with Mayor Nguyen, Sergeant Viscomi followed department protocol and notified the on-duty Watch Commander of his contact with Mayor Nguyen and the existence of the recorded communication. That notice was forwarded through the chain-of-command.
Contrary to Moxley’s inferences throughout his article, Sergeant Viscomi did not surreptitiously record Mayor Nguyen in the hopes of advancing a political agenda to “politically assassinate” Mayor Nguyen. Rather, Sergeant Viscomi complied with Garden Grove Police Department General Order 5.31, which expressly mandates that department personnel activate their in-car video systems “during all citizen contacts, whether dispatched, self-initiated or citizen initiated.” Moxley’s suggestion otherwise is both false and irresponsible and clearly is an attempt to deflect attention away from Mayor Nguyen’s intoxicated comments and behavior.
Requests for comments or interviews should be directed to:
The Garden Grove Police Association Board of Directors at: