Possible Crimes of Sheriff Barney's Sex Cult

Posted in the Ukiah Forum

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1 - 13 of 13 Comments Last updated Nov 19, 2010
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#1 Apr 24, 2010
POSSIBLE CRIMINAL IMPLICATIONS OF SERGEANT BARNEY’S SEX CULTISM
While in Covelo over a decade or more ending in 2007, Sergeant Shannon Barney and his wife Deanna habitually allegedly corrupted deputies in his command, effectively making them ongoing accomplices in his abuses of power.(Cox v. Mendocino County et al,#08-51220, Mendocino County Ukiah Courthouse).

According to verified allegations in this action, Barney pandered her to them and demanded they pander their wives to him, thus forming a sex cult or tribe with himself as chief at night as well as sergeant by day.

Alcohol abuse use by day and night, on and off duty was allegedly among those abuses. Apparently as a result of this corruption, two deputies Brett White and Eric Gore were ruined professionally by alcohol abuse and in apparent remorse committed suicide just over a year apart as they were being drummed out of the department.

In 2007, newly elected Sheriff Tom Allman, who had been Barney’s immediate superior during the period in question, brought him to Ukiah so he could “rebuild” the Covelo deputy residency. A year later, Allman appointed him Chief Deputy Sergeant Coroner, and subsequently, Coordinator of MCSO Emergency Services with command authority over all county resources in a declared state of emergency.

Apparentlly, it was a transfer intended to interrupt the ongoing scandal and bring Barney under closer supervision while retaining him in the department by giving him important duties.

In so doing, Sheriff Allman may have been within his administrative discretion. But in so doing he may have overlooked possible violations of the California Penal Code implicit in Barney’s and Deanna’s behavior.

Penal Code implications:

RAPE:

• By implicit or explicit threats of professional retaliation, Barney may have suborned statutory rape by his wife Deanna of his subordinate male deputies in that it was sex obtained from the deputies by Deanna under “duress” as defined in Penal Code Sec. 261 (2)(b), a felony punishable between 3-8 years in state prison.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#2 Apr 24, 2010
PROSTITUTION:

Section 647(b) defines "prostitution" as including any lewd act between persons for money or other consideration.

• Alternatively, Barney may have suborned statutory prostitution by – or pandered – Deanna to -- his male deputies in consideration for loyalty and complicity in his abuses of power.

• Alternatively, Barney may have suborned statutory prostitution by his deputies – or pandered them -- to Deanna in that it was sex for consideration that absent the consideration they would not have performed. The consideration they received or hoped to receive was the favor of their superior officer.



PANDERING

Section 266i.(a) provides that pandering is a felony, and shall be punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years. A panderer is one who (1) Procures another person for the purpose of prostitution, or (2) who by promises, threats, violence, or by any device or scheme, causes, induces, persuades or encourages another person to become a prostitute, or (5) By fraud or artifice, or by duress of person or goods, or by abuse of any position of confidence or authority, procures another person for the purpose of prostitution, or (6) Receives or gives, or agrees to receive or give, any money or thing of value for procuring, or attempting to procure, another person for the purpose of prostitution

• Once they had sex with Deanna, Barney used this information, as well as promises of favor or threats of retaliation to suborn his deputies to pander their wives to him.

• The deputies pandered their wives to Barney.

• Barney committed statutory rape against the deputies’ wives, using his position of authority and knowledge of their husband’s sexual liaisons with Deanna.

• Alternatively, Barney may have suborned statutory prostitution by demanding and obtaining sex for himself from the deputies’ wives, using the color of his authority over their husband’s careers, the consideration being favor either promised or implied.



EXTORTION:

Section 518 defines one form of extortion as obtaining an official act of a public officer induced by a wrongful use of force or fear, or under color of official right. Section 519 further defines fear as may be induced by a threat to either (3) To expose, or to impute to him or them any deformity, disgrace or crime; or,(4) To expose any secret affecting him or them.

• Barney obtained official acts in the form of loyalty and silence from deputies in his command under color of official right and by threatening to expose their sexual liaisons with Deanna either to their wives or to other law enforcement officials.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#3 Apr 24, 2010
EX-COVELO SHERIFF SERGEANT'S CONNECTION TO DEPUTY SUICIDES
By Richard Johnson
On Saturday February 13, the Ukiah Daily Journal printed a terse announcement on page 2 that the county had settled a lawsuit by a deputy sheriff who alleged he had been passed over for promotion in retaliation for having complained about his superior officer while serving In Covelo for the period 2002-2006.
That superior officer was Shannon Barney, former Tribal Chairman of Round Valley Pomos, and today Mendocino County’s Director of Emergency Services and Chief Deputy Sergeant Coroner.
In passing, the article mentioned allegations of wife swapping and alcohol abuse among deputies serving there at the time.
The plaintiff Jason Cox, who moved to Round Valley with his then wife Jennifer to be a resident deputy in 2002, sued the county as well as Sergeant Barney and Barney’s then immediate supervisor, the current sheriff Tom Allman.
In the two-year course of the suit, Mendocino County judge John Behnke ruled that only the county could be sued for job discrimination and dismissed the complaints against Barney and Allman, saying their actions in disciplining and not promoting Cox were within their discretion and they were immune from liability for their official actions.
The case was headed for trial in the fall of 2009 when freelance reporter Christina Aanestadt filed a request to tape the proceedings for the purpose of news coverage.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#4 Apr 24, 2010
A statement submitted by county counsel Jeanine Nadel quoted in the UDJ story said the county opted to pay part of Cox’s litigation costs in return for his withdrawing the action in order to avoid further disruption of the department and further litigation expense. She also said the County has “addressed personnel concerns to protect all parties to the action.” That is not completely true, as we shall explain.
The article also mentions in passing that two deputies that served under Sergeant Barney during that period in Covelo committed suicide less than a year apart, and that he is now coordinator of the sheriff’s Emergency Services branch.
Cox requested transfer out of Covelo three years ago and remains in the department. He may have settled his suit, but Cox v. Mendocino County et al,#08-51220 -- a foot thick, three folder court file -- still chillingly reveals to anyone who reads it the character of Shannon Barney in cold legal language and stoic police jargon. The plaintiff’s verified allegations as well as sworn depositions by various MCSO personnel are public information.
The picture that emerges of Sergeant Barney is that of a tribal chief or cult leader who uses his power to absolutely control his subordinates in all aspects of their life, apparently to keep them from opposing or revealing his abuses of power, including interfering with the administration of justice, failure to perform his sworn duty, unequal enforcement of the law, violation of department policy, and his own inebriation while on duty.
To gain this control, he apparently imposed sexual requirements on deputies under his command for his entire term of office in Round Valley. The “Covelo Way” was that Barney expected deputies under his command to have sex with his wife, Deanna, and he was to have sex with their wives. These alleged predatory sexual behaviors had a habitual pattern and practice to them, and apparently violate California penal code prohibitions on statutory rape, prostitution, pandering and extortion.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#5 Apr 24, 2010
Retaliation for Whistleblowing:
Cox declaredwhen he came on board as a Covelo resident deputy, Sergeant Barmey expected him and other deputies to eat dinner at his house “most nights” where they heard him and Deanna explain their “open relationship” with then resident deputies, Eric Heiken and Tim Ellis.
According to hearsay, deputy Brett White, who was Cox’s Field Training Officer, was intrigued by this situation, and eagerly joined the cult in 2005 by approaching Barney about having sex with Deanna. Barney reportedly set conditions including that Tammy White would have sex with him. White then had sex with Deanna, Cheryl Ellis, now Tiller, and Jennifer Cox.
Cox openly opposed Barney’s illicit regime and repeatedly complained both verbally and formally to his higher-ups about his commander’s behavior from 2005 onward. He related to various officers that Barney was intoxicated while on duty and was engaged in other illegal behavior.
In return, Barney allegedly retaliated against Cox by filing false negative performance evaluations and refusing to back him up on calls involving armed suspects, according to court documents. When Cox protested the false DEP’s they were overturned by the chain of command.
Cox also learned that Gore was intoxicated while on duty and reported that to superior officers.On July 9, 2006, Deputy Gore went missing in the middle of his shift. Cox found Gore at home passed out with a shotgun at his side, apparently a trial run at suicide.
Cox discussed Barney and other deputies’ activities with Deputy Dean Verdot. Verdot said he would contact the California Department of Justice. Verdot also discussed the information with Captain Broin.
Cox’s suit charges that in retaliation, North County Sector Commander Lieutenant Tom Allman, now sheriff, passed him over for promotion to sergeant six times after he left Covelo in 2007.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#6 Apr 24, 2010
In his suit, Cox charges that Barney was so favored by former sheriff Craver, his political ally former DA Norm Vroman, and by Allman to the degree that he could stop investigations, get charges dropped and spring people from jail.
One example is that of in January of 2010, a Covelo grandmother of 67 years was found guilty in Mendocino County Superior Court of selling methamphetamine. In her home the previous August, deputies had found 7.5 ounces of powder, most of it undiluted, enough for a thousand or more $50 bags. At trial, Nancie Henthorne admitted to selling meth out of her closed restaurant “for 8 months or more.”
But in fact, Covelo resident deputies had been aware fully five years ago that Henthorne was Round Valley’s largest volume meth dealer. They had resolved to investigate her and seek a warrant.
But according to Cox’s declarations, Barney thwarted the effort by warning her granddaughter, Round Valley tribal employee Yvonne Galardo that Nancie would be busted if she did not stop. At the time, he was allegedly involved in a sexual relationship with Galardo that was so intense he would reportedly receive cellphone calls from her all through the night while he was on duty.
In this incident, Barney compromised the safety and health of Round Valley residents and violated state law and Sheriff Department policies by tipping off a suspect with whose close family member he was intimately involved.
Cox also cited as an example Barney’s social and alleged business association with a known marijuana grower named Tim Hurt who was arrested in Covelo in 2005 for possession of firearms in violation of probation and driving on an expired or suspended license. Within days, DA Vroman withdrew all charges and Hurt was released from jail, apparently through Barney’s pull. Barney had been friends with Hurt for a year, frequenting the grower’s house several times a week to play cards and consume alcohol.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#7 Apr 24, 2010
New Sheriff in Town:
The following August, acting sheriff Kevin Broin sent patrol deputies from other areas, as well as COMMET and CAMP to raid marijuana farms in Round Valley after two Mexican pot thieves were killed. The FBI was recruited and has reportedly identified the killers, who remain at large.
Sheriff Tony Craver had suddenly announced his retirement one year early in December, 2005 and Captain Broin had been appointed by county supervisors as interim sheriff after undersheriff Gary Hudson announced himself a candidate. Upon learning this, Hudson went on sick leave and then withdrew from the race. To save the department from collapse, Broin announced his own candidacy..
Broin was distressed to learn of Barney’s abuses not only from Cox, but other sources. With approval from county counsel, he ordered an independent investigation into the whole Covelo situation, and issued an MCSO check for $5,000 to pay for it. He then transferred Sergeant Barney to Fort Bragg, then placed him on administrative leave. In November, he removed White from patrol duty and prepared to fire him.
In October of 2006, Cox made an audiotaped statement to Sgt. Daryl Forrester and Lieutenant Tim Marsh from the sheriff’s personnel department in connection with that investigation. He discussed Barney’s sexual practices, failure to perform duty, unequal enforcemement of law, violation of departmental policy, and inebriation on the job. He also alleged White and Gore were drinking on duty or reported for work having been drinking. That statement exists in the records of the department, and a transcript is in Cox’s possession.
That same month Cox allegedly obtained conclusive evidence of a 300-plant marijuana farm on land owned by Brian Hurt, brother of Tim at Wylatti Flat in Round Valley. According to Brian and other sources, the grow was a project of Tim Hurt and Sergeant Barney. After Cox turned this evidence over to the Major Crimes Task Force, he was informed by officer Darrin Brewster that they were not going to bust it.
Meanwhile, Cox learned his wife Jennifer and Brett White had been carrying on a sexual affair while White was her Field Training Supervisor. They allegedly had sex in the patrol car while on duty. Cox informed Barney of this, but he already knew. Cox then had sex with White’s wife.
In the November, 2006 election runoff for sheriff, Allman won 54-46% with major support from marijuana growers in the third district where in some precincts he got 90% of the vote.
The following January, Allman took office and Broin resumed his Patrol Chief position. Allman also appointed him Chief Deputy Coroner.\
A month later, deputy White, whom Broin had relieved of duty, committed suicide at home in Covelo, He had been hospitalized for inability to care for himself, and prohibited from possessing firearms.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#8 Apr 24, 2010
Cox requested transfer out of Covelo in late 2006 and divorced Jennifer. He had been nominated for deputy of the year for that year and top ranked for promotion. But in 2007, Allman passed Cox over for promotion to sergeant six times. The following March, Cox filed his suit against Allman, Barney and the county for discrimination, sexual harassment and other violations.
In a 2009 deposition in the Cox matter, Allman acknowledged the severity of the situation, and admitted he moved Barney to Ukiah in order to diffuse, but not resolve it.
“We had to get Shannon out of Covelo right now because we have to figure out how to rebuild Covelo.
“We have a deputy who’s drunk on duty. We have a deputy who’s sleeping with a lot of women, including another deputy’s wife. We have that deputy with the other deputy’s wife. We have a sergeant’s wife who has slept with several people and we have an internal affairs investigation supposedly against a sergeant that was never opened. And we have a lieutenant, me, that is not being told of a major investigation, investigations that are occurring in my sector…”
Allman declares he was “out of the loop” on the complaints about and investigations of Sergeant Barney’s activities in Covelo, during which time he was not yet sheriff, but north sector commander.
Kevin Broin, now about to retire has said was denied access to the report on the independent investigation of Barney and other deputies. But he is certain it exists in county counsel Jeanine Nadel’s office. After he lost the election, Nadel, refused to let either Broin or DA Lintott see the report.
“Some law enforcement officer should review that report for possible criminal activity,” says Broin.
The facts alleged in Cox’s suit, of which Allman testified he was aware, question the sheriff’s judgment in naming Barney to the crucially important posts of Chief Deputy Coroner and Emergency Services Coordinator for the sheriff’s department.
Mendo Watch

Jackson St Forest, CA

#9 Apr 24, 2010
The Wages of Corruption:
In January, 2008, Allman promoted Barney to Chief Deputy Sergeant Coroner, and gave Broin’s county car to Barney.
About then, Eric Gore committed suicide at home in Ukiah. His life had been ruined by Barney’s schemes, and Broin had placed him on administrative leave preparatory to ending his 11-year sheriff’s department career. It was Allman who brought him back to work in corrections, but Gore had returned to the bottle
Gore had failed to appear at work for two days on January 3. Alerted by corrections, a deputy visited him at his Waugh Lane apartment in the morning and found him barricaded and armed, threatening to kill himself. About 1pm, sheriff Allman and several deputies as well as UPD officers responded. Gore would not open the door or answer the telephone. When they entered the apartment with a key from the landlord, a single shot rang out and they retreated.
Fire engines were summoned to evacuate residents through upper story windows. A helicopter flew overhead. A single gunshot was heard just before noon. A SWAT team was prepared and a robot with remote camera was finally sent in at 4:00pm and discovered Gore dead in the bathtub from a self-inflected gunshot wound.
Barney and Allman were both there, the sergeant directing traffic and the sheriff watching the Ukiah Police command the response.
Both Brett White and Eric Gore were ruined by alcohol and remorse after having been pressured by their superior officer to join his sex cult. Suicide is always a message of reproach, intended to shame someone. Why didn’t Allman get the message after the second, if not the first suicide.
The record shows that Barney never altered or suspended this behavior over a period of a decade in Covelo. The record shows Allman protected Barney and ignored repeated warnings about his sergeant for at least two years and only responded to these facts by moving Barney into his office building where he could watch him more closely.
These facts raise questions about Allman’s judgment in keeping Barney on the force and giving him two important assignements: Chief Deputy Coroner and Emergency Services Coordinator. In addition, Allman should have reviewed Barney’s behavior as alleged in the Cox lawsuit as well as demand to see the investigative report in the county council’s office for possible Penal Code violations.
Why should we not suspect Barney and his wife are continuing to recruit other deputies into their sex cult and that in the event of an emergency, the sheriff’s senior staffperson for emergency response will not be drunk?
MY THOUGHTS

United States

#10 Apr 24, 2010
RIGHT HERE IN RIVER CITY! IF THIS IS GOING ON WHY NOT GET THE FED'S IN TO CHECK THIS OUT? THIS IS A VERY EVIL THING IF IT REALLY IS HAPPENING.
Ruck D

Barnesville, OH

#11 May 15, 2010
I was a Covelo resident from 1994 to 1997, working for CA D of Forestry. It was pretty much common knowledge that Barney was wife swapping. I had no idea it was this coercive and awful. Barney was one big fat-@ss ugly Indian, with a wife (Deanna) who looked like she'd been poked often and early with an "ugly stick." I never could see how or why anyone would ever want to wife swap with Shannon. I mean, there wouldn't be enough viagra in ht ecounty to get an errection for that woman. Must have been a whole lot of alcohol involved. It hust goes to prove the conclusion that sex crimes are not about the sex, they are about power. Imagine if a whack job like Barney had used all that ability to persuade and influence others in positive ways? Could have been a hell of a man, instead of just another pathetic abuser.
Nameless

United States

#12 May 15, 2010
Ruck D wrote:
I was a Covelo resident from 1994 to 1997, working for CA D of Forestry. It was pretty much common knowledge that Barney was wife swapping. I had no idea it was this coercive and awful. Barney was one big fat-@ss ugly Indian, with a wife (Deanna) who looked like she'd been poked often and early with an "ugly stick." I never could see how or why anyone would ever want to wife swap with Shannon. I mean, there wouldn't be enough viagra in ht ecounty to get an errection for that woman. Must have been a whole lot of alcohol involved. It hust goes to prove the conclusion that sex crimes are not about the sex, they are about power. Imagine if a whack job like Barney had used all that ability to persuade and influence others in positive ways? Could have been a hell of a man, instead of just another pathetic abuser.
Pathetic Criminal, allegedly.
knowfaith

Palo Cedro, CA

#13 Nov 19, 2010
And tell me this what about Gore's ?
And tell me this whats up with gore's wife.

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