Judge Overturns Sheriff’s Decision to ReHire a Former WeHo Sheriff’s Deputy Fired for Domestic Violence


Deputy Caren Carl Mandoyan (KTLA 5)

A judge Monday declared Los Angeles County the winner in a fight with Sheriff Alex Villanueva in his attempt to reinstate a deputy fired over domestic violence allegations.

Villanueva’s efforts on behalf of former Deputy Caren Carl Mandoyan outraged members of the County Board of Supervisors, who filed a petition in March 2018 seeking to have Mandoyan’s rehiring declared void.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff heard arguments on the petition on Aug. 28 and Sept. 1 and took the case under submission before ruling in favor of the county Monday with a 17-page decision.

Mandoyan, who worked on Villanueva’s campaign, was fired in 2016 following allegations of domestic violence, stalking and harassment of a woman he dated after the two began working together in 2012 at the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station. According to an Office of Inspector General report, the sheriff’s department also found that Mandoyan lied to Internal Affairs investigators.

The City of West Hollywood spends more than $20 million a year to contract with the Sheriff’s Department for law enforcement services. While the city’s elected officials have been outspoken about issues of domestic violence, to date neither they nor members of its Public Safety Commission have spoken out about the rehiring of the former West Hollywood Station deputy.

Villanueva repeatedly defended bringing Mandoyan back to the department, questioning the allegations against the deputy and accusing the county’s Civil Service Commission of ignoring evidence that could have cleared Mandoyan of wrongdoing.

In August 2019, Beckloff granted a preliminary injunction, ordering Mandoyan to give up all county property in his possession, including any Sheriff’s Department-issued uniforms, badges and weapons. Mandoyan also was ordered to stop presenting himself as a Los Angeles County deputy sheriff.

In June, Beckloff denied a motion by Mandoyan’s lawyer, Gregory W. Smith, to dissolve or modify the injunction.

On March 12, Mandoyan took and passed the civil service examination, physical agility test and structured interview test for the position of deputy sheriff, then was approved and put on the county eligibility list the next day, Smith stated in his court papers.

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Ruth Williams
Ruth Williams
1 month ago

I am sorry but I take exception in regard to your statement that no Public Safety Commissioners have commented about this. I have been very vocal in my feelings about Villaneuva and about his re-hiring the deputies that Jim McDonell fired as well as other issues surrounding him. If I recall you and I even had a discussion regarding this months ago at breakfast when it became public. I hold firm in my stance that the position should be appointed rather than elected so the Board of Supervisors would have the power to fire him. I also support our City… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Ruth Williams
Art
Art
1 month ago
Reply to  Ruth Williams

Good for you, and thanks!

Vigilant
Vigilant
1 month ago
Reply to  Ruth Williams

Mr. Schmidt did not say that. Please reread hi comment which had some good points but he referred to City Council Members.

Ruth Williams
Ruth Williams
1 month ago
Reply to  Vigilant

I was referring to the article not Mr. Schmidt

Vigilant
Vigilant
1 month ago
Reply to  Ruth Williams

Please pardon the error. Thank you.

Jay
Jay
1 month ago
Reply to  Ruth Williams

Hi Ruth-

I appreciate your having fought and continuing to fight the good fight.

Sorry it took so long for others to get onboard, but better late than never I suppose.

And credit to Judge Mitchell Beckloff as well.

Hopefully the tide is turning against Villanueva.

Erik Jon Schmidt
Erik Jon Schmidt
1 month ago

This is a good decision by the Judge. Law enforcement must be held to a higher standard. Here we have a Police Officer whose job it is (in part) to respond and hopefully resolve domestic dispute complaints. How can he do so objectively if he himself has been accused of domestic violence? It’s like putting a pedophile in charge of a preschool class. For the Sheriff to rehire him speaks volumes about how much he lacks the integrity of a leader and a basic understanding of the role of law enforcement. In my opinion Villanueva hasn’t quite reached the levels… Read more »

Jay
Jay
1 month ago

Silence is complicity. Amen.