Quantcast
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Dave Myers, rabble rouser

Tells all about Sheriff Gore's body cameras and private jails

When 33-year San Diego Sheriff Department veteran Commander Dave Myers announced he would be running to unseat Sheriff Bill Gore, he says his boss tried to humiliate him in front of the force.

“He took me out of the chain of command and stuck me in the closet. It literally was a broom closet that had been made into an office. It was on the second floor. I had to walk through the evidence room to get to my office. I was ordered to no longer attend any command staff meetings.”

Over his career Myers was at times given oversight of all the patrol stations in the county, all investigative staff, and court security. “After the election he put me in charge of nothing. He gave me no support staff.”

Some of his sworn colleagues got in on the disrespectful fun. “The joke was ‘The gay guy’s back in the closet.’ They would leave notes with the coloring of a rainbow saying ‘Oh, how’s the closet?’ I was the highest ranking openly gay male in a culture that is still resistant to change. We still have a force that is 63 percent white in a county where the population is 23 percent white.”

Yet his coming out in the late '90s did not impede his rising through the ranks. Myers’ promotion to sergeant happened under the late Sheriff Bill Kolender. His successor Bill Gore promoted him three times. “There are only eight commanders in the whole department of 4,300,” says Myers. “There are two grades above commander and then Sheriff.”

He won professional accolades including a medal for lifesaving and the National Sheriff Association Medal of Merit for his work on border crime prevention. But Myers always went against the grain. “In command staff meetings, I started getting the reputation of being a rabble rouser.”

The day after the June 5 election, which he lost 56 percent-43 percent, Myers said he was threatened with discipline for insubordination. “I retired two days after the election,” says Myers about walking away from his $130,000-a-year job.

Myers may have accelerated his exit from the department because he often pointed out Gore never spent a day working in a patrol car before becoming sheriff. (Former FBI special agent Gore was handpicked by Kolender to be his replacement). Or it could have been due to an embarrassing intra-force conflict over body cameras.

“We were in the process of deciding which body camera to equip the force with. I was leading the committee to decide which one to use. Gore was pushing his buddy’s product. Quite frankly, it was a piece of shit. He went around me to push it through. When three choices were presented to the entire staff, the product he was pushing was completely dismissed. I created a paper trail so that, if he had pushed his buddy’s product to the front of the line, it would have become a criminal matter.”

Since leaving the force, Myers has followed two different pursuits. He is running along with Dr. Akilah Weber as one of two Democrats trying to unseat Republican incumbents Guy McWhirter and Bill Baber on the La Mesa city council. Both seats are citywide. “In La Mesa there are 14,000 Democrats and 8,000 Republicans, but the La Mesa town council has not been led by a majority Democratic council since it became a city in 1912.”

But his other, unpaid crusade has taken him to speak about jails at such diverse groups as the San Diego Women’s Club and the San Diego Environmentalists.

He maintains that privately run jails cheapen public safety. “Big corporations should not make money off of incarcerating people. Once you involve major corporations into public safety, you completely pervert the system. A private corporation should never make money off the backs of inmates at the expense of public safety.”

Myers says private jailing companies are attempting to “…infiltrate local law enforcement agencies” by influencing such heavy hitting Democrats like State Senator Todd Gloria and State Senate Pro Tem Toni Atkins with tens of thousands in campaign cash.

Myers says companies like the Geo Group of Florida or CoreCivic of Tennessee regularly gouge inmates once they get control of prisons. Each of those two groups run two local facilities. “They are controlling mental health services and drug dispensaries in jail,” Myers said at a recent Fallbrook Democratic meeting. “They are charging $5 for a phone call or $5 to mail a letter because they can. A pack of cookies is upwards of $6.”

He hopes his talks turned the tide. “I can now report that the politicians who were comfortable taking their money are now publicly pledging never to accept it again,” says Myers.

Myers says it was ironic that then Sheriff Kolender asked him to take Gore around and introduce him to the rank and file when Gore was being pushed as Kolender’s heir apparent in 2005.

“I was on the board of directors of the Deputy Sheriff’s Association. He told me ‘I need you to take this guy around and introduce him to people.’ There was tension with the rank and file because he was an outsider who came from a federal agency.”

Myers says Kolender took him under his wing. “I first came out in the late 90s. I had been on the department for 15 years. I was well liked, but he knew it was not a good culture for someone like me. But he was the first Jewish San Diego police chief and then the first Jewish sheriff in the history of San Diego. He kind of looked after me. He said ‘I don’t care whose ---- you suck, I will protect you.’”

Myers says he has heard from former deputies since the election. “Things have not gotten any better in the department….Plus Gore promised he would have a review in the Rebecca Zahau [Coronado homicide] case within 90 days. It’s been over 200 days and nothing.”

Would ex-Commander Myers ever consider running for sheriff again? “Yes. Do not be intimidated by losing. Pick yourself up and get back in the race.”

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Monadnock PR-24s police baton/night stick - $80
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 27, 2020
Wanted old free small lawntractor
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 24, 2020
Bamboo frame 18-speed road bike
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 26, 2020
Frenchie French bulldog
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 26, 2020
6V6 Men's/co-ed flag football
San Diego Reader Classified ads
February 6, 2020
Ad
Previous article

B-sides, studio outtakes, and live performances

Tom Brosseau, Sluka, Planet B, Iration, Alvino & the Dwells
Next Article

Lou Curtiss tells his own story

Yale Strom and Elizabeth Schwartz work to complete documentary on the Folk Arts maven
Comments
5

Even if I had never met Dave Myers, I'd say that anyone would be a better sheriff than bully Bill Gore. But since I have met him, the realization of just how awful his loss was for the people of San Diego is even more acute.

Hopefully Myers will keep up his civic engagements and continue to run for office, so that if the electorate finally realizes how they've been played by the establishment, he'll still be around to serve.

Oct. 16, 2018

I can only assume that when he ran against Gore he knew it was the end of his career in the department. It took a large does of courage to go ahead and file. BTW, this is the first I read or heard of him being gay. So what?

Something was very rotten when the local establishment brought Gore in and appointed him sheriff when Kolender had to quit. The local media were generally silent about Gore's role in the Ruby Ridge, Idaho siege and deaths of innocents there. If the local voters had been told the true story, we'd have heard nothing more about him.

Back in the "keystone" Kolender era, he did have a deputy run against him. That guy wasn't a senior member of the department and nobody took his candidacy seriously. I don't recall what happened to him after the election.

We can hope that Myers tries for it again. (What we could really hope for is that Gore's record and abuses of his office finally catch up with him, and the electorate decides on a change.) Highly unlikely, I know.

Oct. 16, 2018

Is anyone fact checking Myers' statistics? San Diego county only 23 percent white? La Mesa has almost twice as many Democrats as Republicans but hasn't had Democratic control in over a century? Makes no sense.

Oct. 16, 2018

I guess the Dems in La Mesa don't vote. I wonder how many La Mesa registered voters actually vote. The one thing that a city council does not need is a member of law enforcement on the council. Law enforcement has a lot of influence on city government and has no place being on the council.

Oct. 17, 2018

Given our other choices for the La Mesa City Council, someone in Law Enforcement isn't a bad thing.

Oct. 23, 2018

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Dave Myers profile on the Coming Out from Behind the Badge website
Dave Myers profile on the Coming Out from Behind the Badge website

When 33-year San Diego Sheriff Department veteran Commander Dave Myers announced he would be running to unseat Sheriff Bill Gore, he says his boss tried to humiliate him in front of the force.

“He took me out of the chain of command and stuck me in the closet. It literally was a broom closet that had been made into an office. It was on the second floor. I had to walk through the evidence room to get to my office. I was ordered to no longer attend any command staff meetings.”

Over his career Myers was at times given oversight of all the patrol stations in the county, all investigative staff, and court security. “After the election he put me in charge of nothing. He gave me no support staff.”

Some of his sworn colleagues got in on the disrespectful fun. “The joke was ‘The gay guy’s back in the closet.’ They would leave notes with the coloring of a rainbow saying ‘Oh, how’s the closet?’ I was the highest ranking openly gay male in a culture that is still resistant to change. We still have a force that is 63 percent white in a county where the population is 23 percent white.”

Yet his coming out in the late '90s did not impede his rising through the ranks. Myers’ promotion to sergeant happened under the late Sheriff Bill Kolender. His successor Bill Gore promoted him three times. “There are only eight commanders in the whole department of 4,300,” says Myers. “There are two grades above commander and then Sheriff.”

He won professional accolades including a medal for lifesaving and the National Sheriff Association Medal of Merit for his work on border crime prevention. But Myers always went against the grain. “In command staff meetings, I started getting the reputation of being a rabble rouser.”

The day after the June 5 election, which he lost 56 percent-43 percent, Myers said he was threatened with discipline for insubordination. “I retired two days after the election,” says Myers about walking away from his $130,000-a-year job.

Myers may have accelerated his exit from the department because he often pointed out Gore never spent a day working in a patrol car before becoming sheriff. (Former FBI special agent Gore was handpicked by Kolender to be his replacement). Or it could have been due to an embarrassing intra-force conflict over body cameras.

“We were in the process of deciding which body camera to equip the force with. I was leading the committee to decide which one to use. Gore was pushing his buddy’s product. Quite frankly, it was a piece of shit. He went around me to push it through. When three choices were presented to the entire staff, the product he was pushing was completely dismissed. I created a paper trail so that, if he had pushed his buddy’s product to the front of the line, it would have become a criminal matter.”

Since leaving the force, Myers has followed two different pursuits. He is running along with Dr. Akilah Weber as one of two Democrats trying to unseat Republican incumbents Guy McWhirter and Bill Baber on the La Mesa city council. Both seats are citywide. “In La Mesa there are 14,000 Democrats and 8,000 Republicans, but the La Mesa town council has not been led by a majority Democratic council since it became a city in 1912.”

But his other, unpaid crusade has taken him to speak about jails at such diverse groups as the San Diego Women’s Club and the San Diego Environmentalists.

He maintains that privately run jails cheapen public safety. “Big corporations should not make money off of incarcerating people. Once you involve major corporations into public safety, you completely pervert the system. A private corporation should never make money off the backs of inmates at the expense of public safety.”

Myers says private jailing companies are attempting to “…infiltrate local law enforcement agencies” by influencing such heavy hitting Democrats like State Senator Todd Gloria and State Senate Pro Tem Toni Atkins with tens of thousands in campaign cash.

Myers says companies like the Geo Group of Florida or CoreCivic of Tennessee regularly gouge inmates once they get control of prisons. Each of those two groups run two local facilities. “They are controlling mental health services and drug dispensaries in jail,” Myers said at a recent Fallbrook Democratic meeting. “They are charging $5 for a phone call or $5 to mail a letter because they can. A pack of cookies is upwards of $6.”

He hopes his talks turned the tide. “I can now report that the politicians who were comfortable taking their money are now publicly pledging never to accept it again,” says Myers.

Myers says it was ironic that then Sheriff Kolender asked him to take Gore around and introduce him to the rank and file when Gore was being pushed as Kolender’s heir apparent in 2005.

“I was on the board of directors of the Deputy Sheriff’s Association. He told me ‘I need you to take this guy around and introduce him to people.’ There was tension with the rank and file because he was an outsider who came from a federal agency.”

Myers says Kolender took him under his wing. “I first came out in the late 90s. I had been on the department for 15 years. I was well liked, but he knew it was not a good culture for someone like me. But he was the first Jewish San Diego police chief and then the first Jewish sheriff in the history of San Diego. He kind of looked after me. He said ‘I don’t care whose ---- you suck, I will protect you.’”

Myers says he has heard from former deputies since the election. “Things have not gotten any better in the department….Plus Gore promised he would have a review in the Rebecca Zahau [Coronado homicide] case within 90 days. It’s been over 200 days and nothing.”

Would ex-Commander Myers ever consider running for sheriff again? “Yes. Do not be intimidated by losing. Pick yourself up and get back in the race.”

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Universal Sound
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 24, 2020
Area rug
San Diego Reader Classified ads
April 3, 2020
1962 Rambler
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 31, 2020
Why dentists are important for us?
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 31, 2020
The border patrol is hiring
San Diego Reader Classified ads
March 23, 2020
Previous article

What to do when they stop making Heineken and Modelo

Luis Reyes sells beer on a motorcycle
Next Article

What to do when they stop making Heineken and Modelo

Luis Reyes sells beer on a motorcycle
Comments
5

Even if I had never met Dave Myers, I'd say that anyone would be a better sheriff than bully Bill Gore. But since I have met him, the realization of just how awful his loss was for the people of San Diego is even more acute.

Hopefully Myers will keep up his civic engagements and continue to run for office, so that if the electorate finally realizes how they've been played by the establishment, he'll still be around to serve.

Oct. 16, 2018

I can only assume that when he ran against Gore he knew it was the end of his career in the department. It took a large does of courage to go ahead and file. BTW, this is the first I read or heard of him being gay. So what?

Something was very rotten when the local establishment brought Gore in and appointed him sheriff when Kolender had to quit. The local media were generally silent about Gore's role in the Ruby Ridge, Idaho siege and deaths of innocents there. If the local voters had been told the true story, we'd have heard nothing more about him.

Back in the "keystone" Kolender era, he did have a deputy run against him. That guy wasn't a senior member of the department and nobody took his candidacy seriously. I don't recall what happened to him after the election.

We can hope that Myers tries for it again. (What we could really hope for is that Gore's record and abuses of his office finally catch up with him, and the electorate decides on a change.) Highly unlikely, I know.

Oct. 16, 2018

Is anyone fact checking Myers' statistics? San Diego county only 23 percent white? La Mesa has almost twice as many Democrats as Republicans but hasn't had Democratic control in over a century? Makes no sense.

Oct. 16, 2018

I guess the Dems in La Mesa don't vote. I wonder how many La Mesa registered voters actually vote. The one thing that a city council does not need is a member of law enforcement on the council. Law enforcement has a lot of influence on city government and has no place being on the council.

Oct. 17, 2018

Given our other choices for the La Mesa City Council, someone in Law Enforcement isn't a bad thing.

Oct. 23, 2018

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer News — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close