Wednesday, November 26, 2008
After ONE MONTH Riverside County's D.A. Rod Pacheco has made no decision on charges in the case of brutality against Pechanga Casino customer Richard Swan. The October 20th incident, which we reported here and KNBC also reported, seems a pretty simple case. The security guard has ALREADY BEEN fired by Pechanga, Mr. Swan's injuries amply displayed and Pechanga is going to settle the case.
What is Mr. Pacheco waiting for? Is he plea bargaining? Is he waiting for Pechanga to file charges against the Swan's? (There is NO record of charges at the sheriff's department)
How will the Swan's receive JUSTICE against the brutality of Pechanga's guards? Just as importantly, the Riverside Press Enterprise is now passing 31 days of silence on this news, yet is quick to put bad news of SOBOBA in print. Just what is news in the PE's opinion?
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
By Victor Morales, Today correspondent
VALLEY CENTER, Calif. – The latest meditation attempt by BIA officials Oct. 12 to resolve a rift between members of a tribal council has failed, possibly threatening the legality of its lucrative casino operations, a senior BIA official said.
As it stands, the BIA does not recognize the split tribal government of the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians in inland San Diego County, said James Fletcher, superintendent of the Southern California Agency of the BIA. “If they don’t come to an agreement there may be far reaching impacts,” Fletcher said. Pressed on whether the tribe’s Valley View Casino was at risk, Fletcher said, “The potential exists, yes, but I don’t know how high at this point.”
Fletcher advised both factions in August that he could not recognize either as the legitimate tribal government because they were holding separate meetings, suspending each other’s members from the council and resisting working out their disagreements.
One of the factions voted in replacements, according to a BIA letter to the tribe. The council rift centers on the disenrollment of a family because of questions concerning their Indian ancestry, Fletcher said. About 80 people’s tribal rights were suspended, including payments from casino revenues.
See the link above for the rest of the story.
If you have information to share about what you've seen, heard and know, here is the contact information for the FBI:
FBI Los Angeles
FOB 11000Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, California 90024-3672
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Riverside County sheriff's deputies searched for three carjacking suspects Wednesday on the Soboba Indian Reservation.
Authorities were called to the reservation by a construction crew working there who reported being carjacked by three men about 6:30 a.m. at gunpoint.
The crew was approached by the men, one armed with a handgun, another with a rifle, who stole their work truck, sheriff's Sgt. Dennis Gutierrez said.
The construction crew was not injured and tribal government assisted law enforcement searching the reservation for the carjackers. Anthony Del Rio, 18, a resident of the Soboba Reservation, was arrested on suspicion of carjacking, Sgt. David Kurylowicz said in a report. He said more arrests are expected.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
UPDATE II: MARY PARKS of KNBC has done a story on the Swans! Please leave a comment there.
UPDATE: GREAT NEWS! The Swan Family contacted me and let me know that they will be interviewed by the news tomorrow. That will be the first, hopefully of many. WHERE is the Press Enterprise?
An elderly Palm Desert man, with a pacemaker, who was patronizing the Pechanga Casino was beaten by Pechanga security and his wife terrorized. This is NOT the first incident of this type at Pechanga, according to what the RCSD told the Swan's. The Riverside Sheriff's Department has take a report on the incident.
Seniors should rethink visiting Pechanga. You have LESS rights at a tribal casino and the sheriff's may not be able to protect you. One of our family was attacked by a former tribal council member and he ran like a 'punk-assed bitch' to the Government Center so the Sheriff's couldn't touch him.
Is Pechanga safe? The stories of thug like behavior and the recent car-jacking by a Pechanga crime family member AT THE CASINO should point to a NO response.
Here is the description of the incident and a picture:
On October 20th, 2008, I nearly lost my life. While in the Pechanga Casino Resort in Temecula, my wife and I had a disagreement with Security personnel over forty-four dollars left in a machine by a patron, who was harassing her. My wife was scared, so I got upset.
Security told my wife she could stay but I had to leave. We told them we'd both leave and started walking toward the hotel to get our luggage.
Suddenly without warning I was jumped from behind by two security men and violently thrown to the ground. I kept telling them to stop, that I was a 70 year old man with a pacemaker and took a blood thinning prescription Coumadin. But they didn't care.
They slammed my head into the marble floor and dragged me to their security room. I feared for my life knowing that the Coumadin I am taking could cause severe bleeding. If I bled internally or developed a clot in my head I'd be dead. By the grace of God I survived.
I had trouble breathing so the casino medical team gave me oxygen. Seeing my condition they rushed me in an ambulance to the nearest hospital. I have low blood pressure but it stood at 183 over 100. The Sheriff came to the hospital and took our report.
My wife spoke to Capt. Carmichael at Pechanga and he told her that normal procedure was to escort someone who is told to leave out the nearest entrance or ask if they were hotel guests and then escort them to their room to get their luggage. None of this was communicated to us.
We intend to file Assault and Battery charges. According to the police and local attorneys, this kind of brutality goes on all the time in certain reservation land casinos.
Isn't anybody going to do something about it? One day, those Security men, who have their own rules, will kill someone.
Teetilawuncha's Blog has a story about YOUR RIGHTS in Indian Country.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
If You're a Rich San Manuel Casino Indian, You Can Hatch Murder Plots and Get NO Jail time: DA Michael Ramos
San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael A. Ramos wants to make one thing perfectly clear: He can't be bought. OP: Rented?
The county's top prosecutor wants to dispel any public perception that more than $12,000 in contributions to his campaign in the last two years from the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians and an attorney had anything to do with a plea bargain that allowed two wealthy tribal members to receive probation and electronic monitoring for plotting to kill a man in 2006. OP: Certainly NOT, why would we think that?
"This office will not, and cannot, and never will be bought. It doesn't matter who you are," Ramos said. "And that's the most important part of the DA's office - our integrity." OP: Way to show that INTEGRITY. Put two La Eme people in jail, (rightfully so) but not those who PROMOTED MURDER.
Let's see, San Bernardino DA Mike Ramos does nothing to tribal members and Riverside DA won't investigate the BEATING of one of Pechanga's customers. (apparently, NONE of the brutality issues, as Riverside sheriff's told Mr. Swan than his case wasn't unusual).
All of the employees are dealers or table-game operators and represent 5 percent of the casino's work force.
The casino, which sits along Interstate 10 near Cabazon, closed 28 table games months ago. Management also began reducing the casino's work force through attrition more than a year ago and froze managers' salaries
The Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians laid off about 400 employees at its Temecula-area resort over the summer, citing the economic hard times. That was AFTER shedding 400 jobs previously.
LOOKS LIKE THE STATE WILL NOT GET the $9 BILLION the tribes promised us with Props. 94-97. I believe we at OP's Blog told you so.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Tribal Self Reliance in California, Have they Had Enough Time? Let's expand gaming throughout California.
It's been 2o years for gaming in CA, and 10 years since Class 3 gaming was allowed. Tribes have expanded businesses and done pretty well. Is it time for the rest of Californians to have that same opportunity?
Shouldn't gaming be expanded throughout California, so that the state will benefit? Tribes pay very little to the state, much less than Las Vegas/Nevada gaming businesses pay.
Have tribes taken that money to improve all the infrastructures on their reservations? Water delivery, power, greenbelts, sewers, HOUSING FOR MEMBERS? IF NOT, WHY NOT? Pechanga has paid their members over $1.5 million each, much more than the average of Americans. (It would be MUCH less, had the tribe not terminated 25% of the tribe, and EVEN LESS had the tribe allowed all those who had a right to be in the tribe, IN) Had they taken that money to develop the rez, it would seem to be the right use of funds.
Is it PAST TIME to level the playing field in California?
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
If Nevada could have instant access to millions of new customers in these hard economic times, would the state’s Legislature and governor go for the potential windfall of new business?
We may soon find out.
The ability to bring millions of new customers to Las Vegas if the state’s minimum gambling age was lowered to 18 was the reasoning behind the suggestion raised by a gaming industry lawyer in a question-and-answer session with regulators at Friday’s gaming law conference sponsored by the State Bar of Nevada.
State Gaming Control Board Chairman Dennis Neilander and Nevada Gaming Commission Chairman Peter Bernhard were asked their feelings about changing Nevada’s gambling age limit from 21 to 18. Neilander said he would take the suggestion to Steven Horsford, the new Senate majority leader, and Assembly Majority Leader Barbara Buckley.
I say YES to lowering the gaming age in Nevada to 18. What say you? After all, California's age is 18.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Pechanga builds golf course on culturally significant property
TEMECULA, CA – The Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians will officially open The Journey at Pechanga, a daily fee golf course, this week. The Journey, a new addition to the Pechanga Resort and Casino complex in Riverside County, California, cuts through the Great Oak Ranch which was once the home of “Perry Mason” novelist Erle Stanley Gardner.
The Great Oak Ranch was the subject of a heated and costly battle from 2000 to 2003 as the Pechanga Band fought to keep SDG & E from running a power line through the property. Throughout, tribal officials stressed the need to protect the Great Oak and the many significant and invaluable cultural and archaeological resources on the Ranch from the impacts related to development.
Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA) sponsored several bills aimed at protecting the Ranch from development. In a hearing on one of Congressman Issa’s bills, Pechanga Chairman Mark Macarro testified to the House of Representatives Committee on Resources that, “The sole purpose of the (land) acquisition is the preservation and protection of the Luiseno people’s natural and cultural resources.”
And, when specifically asked if the Pechanga Tribe had “any plans for development of any kind on the Great Oak Ranch property”, Chairman Macarro responded as follows:
“No, we don’t. As stated … the intended use and purpose is to preserve and protect the resources that are there.”
Needless to say, the development of the golf course and other projects on land that was supposed to be free from impacts in no way reflects the “no change in use” testified to by Mr. Macarro. While the transfer of the Ranch property protected it from the proposed power line project, the transfer did not protect the Ranch or its resources from tribal development projects, including the golf course.
“The transfer of the Great Oak Ranch and eventual development of the property is tragic,” stated John Gomez, Jr.* “If the golf course project, or any other development, had been proposed on private property as culturally rich and significant as this, you better believe that tribal officials would have taken every action, whether it be lawsuits or acts of Congress, to stop it. Unfortunately, the duty to protect and preserve does not apply to tribal projects that may add to the bottom line.”
In addition to the impacts development has had on the cultural and archaeological resources on the Great Oak Ranch and the surrounding area, it appears that the tribal officials’ double-talk was reason enough for the City of Temecula and others to raise serious concerns regarding a recent bill sponsored by Congressman Issa to transfer additional lands to the United States government for the Pechanga Band.
The bill, HR 2963, which was passed in September, transferred land in Riverside and San Diego Counties for “the protection, preservation, and maintenance of the archaeological, cultural, and wildlife resources thereon”. Based on their experience with the Great Oak Ranch transfer, the City of Temecula and local residents sought and received language in HR 2963 that would restrict development. However, only time will tell if the bill language is enough to protect the invaluable cultural and archaeological resources from the development plans of tribal officials.
*As Legal Analyst for the Office of the Tribal Attorney for the Pechanga Band, John Gomez Jr. spent the better part of two years working with local, State and Federal officials to protect the Great Oak Ranch and the cultural and archaeological resources located thereon from development
My father, who Pechanga still credits as Pechanga people on their website was a decorated war veteran, awarded the Bronze Star and the Army commendation medal for heroism in Vietnam, is now considered, NOT PECHANGA.
Of course, he always knew he was, helping to build a cabin on the rez in 1957. For you history buffs, that was pre-casino, pre-cornfield (a la Macarro) and pre-Gloria Wright, who came to the rez in 1972. She's one who keeps her brother from his rightful place in the tribe.
Pechanga, shame on you, for disavowing your veterans and Fathers, and their descendents.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Letter to Riverside County District Attorney ROD PACHECO asking for JUSTICE in the Pechanga Beating of Richard Swan
District Attorney Rod Pacheco
4075 Main StreetRiverside , CA 92501
fax: (951) 955-0196
Re: Prosecution of Pechanga Resort and Casino Employees
Dear District Attorney Pacheco:
I write this letter to request that you prosecute the Pechanga Resort and Casino employees responsible for the injuries suffered by Richard Swan during his visit to the Pechanga Resort and Casino.
Last night I saw the KNBC 4 news story regarding the assault, and I was appalled that such an incident could occur. The pictures of Mr. Swan taken immediately after the assault, as well as Mr. and Mrs. Swan’s recalling of the incident, were truly horrific.
The account of the incident, as well as the life-threatening injuries sustained by Mr. Swan, require that your office institute a thorough investigation of the incident and prosecute those responsible to the fullest extent of the law.
I hope that the District Attorney’s office will not be thwarted or deterred from seeking justice in this case, even if the Pechanga Tribe attempts to shield its employees from prosecution and escape any financial or other liability by invoking tribal sovereignty.
I hope that your office will take the appropriate measures to ensure that the Swan’s rights are protected and upheld. It would be a true miscarriage of justice if Mr. Swan’s injuries and the actions of the Pechanga Resort and Casino employees were merely dismissed by the District Attorney’s office.
Pechanga beats its customers, which you WON'T find in the NCTIMES, guess that's not a good enough story.
Friday, November 7, 2008
We have sent FOUR P E reporters the information from the SWANS, contact information for Pechanga and the contacts for liasons in the Sheriff's department, yet NO story.
How MUCH is that ad revenue from Pechanga anyway? Here's some of the stories the PE wrote about:
LONG BEACH TEACHER faces prison (how local is that?)
FONTANA fireworks ban (not in service area either, and when is 4th of July?)
New Bridge in San Bernardino
Rialto School Chief resigns (So what?)
West Hollywood Protest Arrests (so not local)
Come ON, Press Enterprise, give us NEWS about the abuses at Pechanga, don't hide it.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
This sounds a lot like Redding Rancheria. They have harassed, threatened & beat up employees, customers, their own tribal members & other Indian people who have been invited to participate in events or have come to put their money into the casino.
It is a very shameful time for tribes and their citizens who have allowed this type of behavior. The dictatorships and the bullying that is taking place is so outrageous and it really looks bad on American Indians everywhere.
I never thought I would see it all come down to this. I was always proud to be a part of what I felt was a historic time in this country when I witnessed my dad, who was our Tribal Chairman at a gathering of all Tribal Leaders at a Senate meeting in Washington, DC. I witnessed the Tribal Elders along with other Tribal Leaders who fought in the Vietnam war tell stories of their tribes and how they struggled with poverty, etc. I watched grown men cry as they testified on why Indian Gaming was going to help Tribes with economic development for their people to be able to have education, housing, health benefits through self reliance.
I believed in this vision and was proud to see it all come to life. I stood in the field with other Indian people and Mark Macarro when we filmed for Prop 5. I participated along with other California Indians in San Francisco when we all demonstrated for Indian Gaming in California. I will never forget the march to the steps of the Ninth Circuit Court with all the other Native men, women and children.
And now to see what has become a terrible disrespect to some tribes not only to their tribal citizens, but to our elders who have passed on and fought to live to see their children survive and make something of themselves through education. I was going to college when my rights and my family's rights were violated. I lost my education as the tribe was paying for it. Many other family members lost the same rights to their education.
I am appalled that those rights and other rights have been stolen by people who have no right to take the most sacred part of our being away from us. This is such a crime and the criminals have to answer for it. The fact that the loophole of "sovereignty" has allowed them to push their crime to other levels is a joke.
This is a major crime to any human being. Sovereignly is not for committing crimes against humanity, it is to be used as a protection for people. Whoever thought of using sovereignty as a way to protect their crimes has a very dark and evil mind. It is as evil as the mind of Hitler and other evil dictators throughout the world.
The victims need to stand up for their rights and continue to protect what is rightfully theirs. Teach your children to stand for their rights. There is nothing wrong when it is right. The only wrong is letting the criminals continue to commit crimes against the victims. In this case, the criminals have been given fame, when they deserve shame.
Greed, power and corruption has ultimately become a way of life for some of these tribal leaders and as long as they get away with it without justice, more tribal leaders will figure out that they can do the same to any tribal member, because they are untouchable. I never thought I would ever see such injustice in this time in our lives. Shame on those who don't stand for the innocent victims.
I would like to see a hero rise up and take a stand for our American Indians who have lost their voices and their rights.
Peace & Love
This blog details the bad acts by the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians. While the tribal chairman, mark macarro is the face of Indian gambling in California, that face hides the sinister actions of his tribal council.
Please check through the archives for many stories of the injustices that Pechanga has perpetrated on their own people. IF PECHANGA will cheat their own, they will cheat (or as happened recently, BEAT) you.
Show your outrage at Pechanga's action by avoiding their casino and hotel. If you don't play, they won't win.
The families that were disenrolled were members a century before there was a casino, and we have no problem being members when all that Pechanga has again is .... SAND.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
We've challenged the local newspapers: Press Enterprise and SBSUN to question the Riverside Sheriff's Department as well as Pechanga Tribal Council about the crime wave that's swelling up.
Sheriff Sniff, are you concentrating too much on the Soboba Reservation and not enough at the lawlessness at Pechanga? Are CALIF citizens SAFE at Pechanga?
I'd offer this advice to customers: STAY away before YOU are beaten too.
Monday, November 3, 2008
From that article:
Tribal membership disputes are also a problem across the country, with as many as 4,000 tribe members fighting for enrollment, said Carla Maslin, a disenrolled member of the Redding Rancheria in Northern California and an advocate for disenfranchised tribe members.
Maslin's case has gone nowhere in tribal court, she said. "It's like being raped and going to the person who raped you for justice," Maslin said.
These enrollment issues don't just strip away income from a potential casino, they limit access to education, health care and the cultural benefits of belonging to a tribe, she said."Someone is trying to steal away something that doesn't belong to them," Maslin said. "They're trying to steal their identity and heritage."
Here was how "those who raped us" administered J U S T I C E
- The Pechanga Tribe said they'd give us a fair hearing, but consoldidated our cases so that we couldn't individually bring our case forward. (to keep the rapists from having to listen to 95 of my family)
- We had a limit of to any written statement.
- We were not allowed to send attachments or records (such as Dr. Johnson's report that determined our family was indeed Pechanga)
- We must treat our rapists with respect, disrepectful conduct was "not to be tolerated" (lie back and enjoy it)
- You MAY NOT ask questions, or call witnesses or present additional evidence or documents (we rape, therefore we will hear no evil)
- You will be subject to a PAT DOWN SEARCH, even if you are elderly.
- NO note taking instruments of any kind permitted. (and we won't wear a condom)
- Grouping will be 15 people and you have 30 minutes (2 minutes per person and we aren't listening anyway, so who cares?)
- We, the Tribal Council don't have to be on time for your appeal. (Masiel was late, but no matter, his mind was made up)
- The enrollment committee commands you to use certified documents, however, the EC will accept hearsay from child molester in prison (Megan's Law website: Ibanez, Vincent)
- Rapist PROHIBIT the presence of legal representatives. (ACLU anyone?)
As you can see, the "rapist" in our case, had their own brand of justice. NO CIVIL RIGHTS for us. And this is who Congressman Darrell Issa and Sen. Jim Battin stand with.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Word on the street is that Pechanga has been trying to get the other tribes to share some of their burden as they had to pay so much more in television ads trying to erase the STENCH of their betrayal of their tribal members. Pechanga spent about $50 million more than some of the other tribes, running an infomercial on local television filled with half truths.
The February ballot fight over casino-expansion agreements for the Morongo, Pechanga and Agua Caliente tribes and the Sycuan tribe in San Diego County burned through nearly $150 million. The three Inland tribes put up nearly $110 million of that, according to state records.
The casino business, meanwhile, has slowed. In July, the Pechanga casino laid off 400 workers because high gas prices and the struggling economy (NOT TO MENTION the negative publicity)were keeping customers away.
So, here is what has happened:
Two years ago, the region's wealthiest tribes -- the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians in the Coachella Valley, the Morongo Band of Mission Indians near Banning, the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians near Temecula, and the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians near Highland -- spent an average of $1.3 million each in direct contributions to state candidates, political parties and independent expenditures in the months leading up to the November 2006 election, according to state campaign-finance reports.
As of Friday, the four tribes had spent a fraction of that. Much of the money came only in the past day or two, less than a week before Election Day.
Why keep paying for someone when they are already in your pocket? And, has anyone checked to see HOW MUCH, Pechanga Spokesman Macarro has donated out of his OWN pocket? Politicians, if they don't contribute from their OWN wallets, that means they don't trust OR care about you.