If there’s one thing to be said about the Holden Political Machine, founded by scion Nate Holden (former legislator, L.A. City Council member, and California Democratic Council President) all the major male players have female problems.
Nate himself was sued repeatedly for sexual harassment. The lawsuits cost the City of Los Angeles alone millions of dollars in defense costs, which were of course paid for by the taxpayers. In a complaint to the California Department of Fair Employment & Housing, a Nate Holden City Field Deputy, Carla Cavalier alleged that:
“During my period of employment with Councilman Nate Holden, I was humiliated, embarrassed and offended by his rampant and hostile verbal and sexual attacks on me. Councilman Holden personally created, and fostered with other male staff members, a sexually charged atmosphere . . . ,” Cavalier said in the complaint.
Cavalier alleges that Holden often stared and made suggestive statements, including: “Come here, Sugar,” “Let me see what you have on, Sugar,” “Turn around for me, Sugar,” and “Um, Um, you look good, Sugar.
“While saying this, he had a leering look on his face and would be looking my body up and down, dwelling on my breasts, my buttocks, my legs and my pelvic area. . . . Very often he would run his hand down the back of my head and neck in a suggestive manner that mortified me and made me feel degraded,” she said.
The ensuing lawsuit eventually cost Los Angeles $2 million in legal bills and the city settled with Cavalier for $175,000.
Protesting Nate’s repeated bouts with sexual harassment claims, a group of NOW members and other feminist activists—one of whom was my great friend and former SFV/NELA NOW leader Cookie Pemberton—were threatened by the City with prosecution over a perfectly non-violent demonstration at his office.
Chris Holden had an even weirder episode with his wife Michelle. In 1998 she was arrested for sex with two teenage boys, 15 and either 14-15 respectively. While she denied in court that she had done anything other than engage in voluntary oral sex with them, she at one point wrote a letter to the County Probation Department claiming to have been raped. The 8 count grand jury indictment charged her with oral sex and sexual intercourse with the older boy and committing a “lewd act” on the younger one.
At her sentencing hearing, her attorney accused the boys of being “gangbangers,” but given that they had been baby-sitting the Holden family’s children, one would have to call into extreme question why one would hire “gangbangers” as baby-sitters.
Another scandal that engulfed Chris Holden involved “god-squad” former LAPD Assistant Chief Robert Vernon, a right wing religious fanatic, in unlawfully releasing confidential police intelligence files about one of Holden’s opponents, Michael Zinzun, for Pasadena City Council, “outing” his activities with the Black Panthers and the Peace & Freedom Party.
Now, the Holden machine is putting forth Ishmael Trone as candidate to replace Chris on the Pasadena City Council. In the last election, Chris was elected to the California State Assembly. What inquiring minds want to know is, “where exactly is he living” and is it because he’s separated from his wife or is it all just a scam to run in a district that he doesn’t live in.
Let me back up to a similar situation I investigated involving the son of then Congressional Representative Juanita Millender McDonald, Roderick Keith McDonald (later convicted of felonies and imprisoned). When Roderick ran for State Assembly in the Compton-Carson area, he registered to vote at his mom’s house in Carson and claimed he was living there. The problem was that I verified from the County Assessor’s Office that he had signed on the dotted line for a Home Owners Property Tax Exemption at his home in the City of Long Beach, claiming to live there, about a mile outside the Assembly District he was running in.
A Sacramento Judge ruled that Roderick couldn’t hold the office even if the voters fell for his scam and elected him, which they didn’t. My complaint to the House of Representatives Ethics committee about his mom’s collusion with his perjury went unanswered and apparently, uninvestigated.
Fast forward to the Pasadena City Council race. Trone’s running in Pasadena listing his address as the Bail Bond office owned by his parents at 83 E Orange Grove Blvd Pasadena CA 91103-4327. Presumably then, that’s where he’s registered to vote.
The County Assessor’s office, contrary to what it allowed me to access in Roderick McDonald’s case, has officially refused to let me see a copy of the Homeowner’s Exemption on the property tax records for the location that Trone’s family lives at, but the publicly available assessor’s information for that house, located in the unincorporated community of Altadena which doesn’t vote in Pasadena City elections, is:
3447 Marengo Avenue Altadena CA 91001
Owner: ISHMAEL AND JUANITA TRONE
Total land value: $178,644
Total building value: $120,644
Total value for property: $299,288
Recording date: 02/12/1993
Year built: 1955
Effective year built: 1970
Area of property: 1,916 square feet
Assessment for fiscal year: 2008/2009
Of course it’s also of interest into where Ishmael is getting his mail:
So again, inquiring minds want to know…..is Ishmael Trone “separated” from his wife, Juanita? Is he really living at 83 E Orange Grove in Pasadena or is he living in Altadena and enjoying the benefits of a property tax exemption as a live-in homeowner there while registered to vote in Pasadena?
Having raised that point, let me digress a bit. Can Ishmael Trone be trusted? Inquiring minds also want to know the answer to that question.
According to the Pasadena Weekly on December 12, 2012, Trone’s version of his arrest on firearms charges is as follows:
Trone, meanwhile, told the Weekly he had been working for a bail bond company owned by his parents in 1997 when he tried to board a plane with a loaded 22-calibre pistol in his bag.
Trone said his Pasadena neighborhood was so dangerous he did not feel safe coming to work late at night without a gun. Running late for a conference, Trone said he forgot his gun was in his briefcase while trying to board a plane. He was later charged with misdemeanor possession of a concealed weapon, resulting in a fine.
The problem with his story is that this isn’t what he was charged with. Trone was probably not aware that the file on this case was still in the archives and still available and nobody else in the press seems to have tried to verify the story. According to the Complaint filed in the Burbank Courthouse, Ishmael Trone was charged with :
On or about April 23, 1997, in the above-entitled Judicial District, ISHMAEL TRONE did willfully and unlawfully carry concealed within a vehicle a pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person, a violation of section 12025(a) of the PENAL CODE of the State of California, a misdemeanor.
On or about April 23, 1997, in the above-entitled Judicial District, ISHMAEL TRONE did willfully and unlawfully carry a loaded firearm on his or her person or in a vehicle while in a public place, a violation of section 12031(a) of the PENAL CODE of the State of California, a misdemeanor.
The specific allegations of the first charge demonstrate that what he was being accused of was a violation of subsection (1) of Section 12025(a) which says “12025. (a) A person is guilty of carrying a concealed firearm when he or she does any of the following: (1) Carries concealed within any vehicle which is under his or her control or direction any pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed upon the person.” [Emphasis added]. By definition, an airplane you’re boarding as a passenger is not under your own “control or direction.”
The second charge was also inconsistent with Trone’s story (Fable? Fairy tale maybe?) as told to the Pasadena Weekly because Section 12031(a)(1) says, “12031. (a)(1) A person is guilty of carrying a loaded firearm when he or she carries a loaded firearm on his or her person or in a vehicle while in any public place or on any public street in an incorporated city or in any public place or on any public street in a prohibited area of unincorporated territory.” [Emphasis added]. Again, by definition, an airplane is not a “vehicle” in a public place or a public street.
So, will any inquiring minds in the government try to find out whether Trone actually lives where he claims to live, whether he’s benefiting from a property tax homeowner’s exemption at a home he doesn’t live in, and whether if one or the other is true, is he committing perjury on one or more simultaneously effective government documents that can’t be true at the same time? I’m waiting to see.
Continuing the controversy: