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— A high-profile witness in the federal probe of strip-club influence over the San Diego City Council has been in plenty of financial hot water lately, according to federal records in Las Vegas. Tom Waddell, who appeared before a council committee in April, where he was caught on videotape giving an apparently false San Diego address and saying he was interested in changes to the city's strip-club laws, is at the center of intense speculation about whether a conspiracy existed to alter the restrictions in favor of Cheetahs club owner Mike Galardi. The Union-Tribune has reported that Waddell works as a greeter at Galardi's Jaguars club in Las Vegas. Contacted by phone at his home in that city, Waddell said last week he was set to testify before the grand jury and referred questions to his San Diego-based attorney Jeremy Warren, who declined to elaborate other than to assert his client was not a major figure in the investigation. Listed as the owner of a business called Direct Meeting Solutions, Waddell filed for personal bankruptcy last September. According to those documents, he owed a total of $208,000 in so-called unsecured claims: $34,638.92 to the Monte Carlo Hotel & Casino; $27,977.50 to the Rio Hotel & Casino; $1500 to the Internal Revenue Service; and $144,420 to Kenwood Communications Corp. of Suwanee, Georgia. Consideration for the hotel claims is listed as "rooms revenue." The Kenwood claim is based on a federal civil lawsuit filed by the company against Direct Meeting Solutions and Waddell for "recovery of money paid and other relief"; a Kenwood spokesman in Long Beach declined comment. Other debts included $18,000 owed to the Clark County Credit Union on a loan for a 2002 American Ironhorse motorcycle, valued at $21,000. According to the filing, Waddell also owned a 2001 Range Rover. Among other assets, Waddell listed $8000 in "commission receivable from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, contingent, likely uncollectible." Personal property included household furniture ($5000); office equipment and computers ($4500); phone system for business ($2000); Breitling stainless steel watch ($800); and a "Sig. 45 cal. pistol"($400). The filing says Waddell was drawing $5000 a month from Direct Meeting Solutions. That business, which was said to provide "meeting and convention planning services," grossed an estimated $30,000 in 2002, $107,380 in 2001, and $43,700 in 2000. And last year, according to the documents, Waddell gave his fiancée, Tammy Riggins, an engagement ring valued at $2300.

Shrink rapped Insiders say Tad Parzen, currently assistant general counsel for the San Diego Unified School District, may be on track to succeed his boss, retiring general counsel Joanne SawyerKnoll. Parzen, a close ally of district chief Alan Bersin and chairman of the San Diego Chamber Foundation board, a group that lobbies for charter schools and various means of privatizing local education, is the son of Zane Parzen, the La Jolla psychiatrist who was the subject of the 1986 book A Killing Cure by Evelyn Walker. "On the recommendation of her psychiatrist neighbor, Walker went to see psychiatrist Zane Parzen for her headaches and mild depression," recounts Library Journal's review on Amazon.com. "Two and half years later, after frequent and humiliating sexual relations with Parzen; addiction to tranquilizers and other drugs followed by near-fatal withdrawal; suicide attempts; and a tragic divorce, she was a borderline psychotic. Walker hired flamboyant attorney Marvin Lewis Sr. and embarked on long and bitter malpractice proceedings (which she won). This was the first time that a psychiatrist was expelled from his chapter of the American Psychoanalytic Association by his own colleagues for having sexual relations with a patient."

Relatively speaking Is it a case of political Alzheimer's? On Sunday, U-T columnist Neil Morgan devoted an entire 800-word piece to singing the praises of political consultant Tom Shepard. Morgan aired his views on fallout from the ongoing Cheetahs investigation, yet failed to once mention Shepard's 1985 guilty plea to criminal charges stemming from his involvement in city hall's biggest ever (thus far) political scandal: the Roger Hedgecock and J. David Dominelli campaign- money-laundering case. Meanwhile, George Mitrovich, Dominelli's former publicist, who once lived in a posh Del Mar house funded by the swindler, has written a letter to the New York Times, defending the paper in its time of turmoil: "The enemies of the Times, especially among the right wing, which has so poisoned the political dialogue, may delight in Mr. Raines's and Mr. Boyd's departure, but men and women of decency will be saddened." ... Today is the day a nine-member search committee of University of California Regents is scheduled to announce its choice for president to succeed Richard Atkinson. Rumored front-runner: UCSD chancellor Robert Dynes. His father-in-law, San Francisco financier Warren Hellman, has business links to Regent John Moores, the selection-committee head.

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