Don Bauder 5:30 p.m., March 10
Tentative Ruling: Sanders Must Give Deposition
Judge John S. Meyer ruled tentatively today (July 8) that Mayor Jerry Sanders can be deposed in the case of Kessler vs. City of San Diego. The City was trying to protect the mayor from the deposition. The City will have a chance to argue against the judge's ruling tomorrow. As the Reader has reported in two lengthy pieces and several blog items, a police detective and an FBI agent did a study on fraud at a business improvement district by Little Italy powerhouse Marco Li Mandri and felon Joe Mannino. Scott Kessler, a City employee who rode herd on business improvement districts, cooperated with the investigators, and passed their report to the Ethics Commission. Kessler was fired. He sued, and among other things said the mayor had been enraged in learning of Kessler's cooperation. The City argued that government executives such as Sanders are exempt from depositions absent compelling reasons. When an official has direct personal factual information on the material issue, he or she can be deposed. The judge ruled that Sanders has direct personal factual information pertaining to the material issues and cannot be shielded by a protective order.