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Madera County Board of Supervisors Censures District Attorney for Workplace Abuse and Harassment

MADERA - The Madera County Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution in a special meeting Monday to formally censure District Attorney David Linn for allegations of workplace misconduct. In addition, the Board authorized the release of the redacted report. 

An investigation conducted by the law firm Liebert Cassidy Whitmore sustained allegations that District Attorney Linn engaged in a pattern of discriminatory, harassing and abusive conduct toward his department’s employees.  In response, the Board of Supervisors took the only legislative action within their authority as a corrective measure toward an elected official.

“Protecting the safety of our employees is of utmost importance, and the Board of Supervisors has to act when racist, sexist and otherwise offensive comments are repeatedly directed toward our employees”, said Board Chairman Max Rodriguez.  

Three members of the public came forward to speak in support of DA Linn, no one but the investigator for this case spoke against Linn. When Linn spoke on own his behalf he said he was shocked and saddened by the County’s action. Linn completely denied the charges and said, "I never made those statements, I just don’t say those things.”

Linn said that these charges were in retaliations for investigations by his office against two sitting members of the Madera County Board of Supervisors, David Rogers and Brett Frazier. He claims that Frazier accepted a loan for a house he purchased from a Fresno Developer, which Big Valley News has found no evidence supporting this claim.

He also claims that David Rogers has issues with his campaign finances for his supervisorial and congressional campaigns. Big Valley News has found issues with both campaigns with the mixing of monies and a reimbursement made to the Rogers wife in the congressional campaign that we have questioned Rogers about and he has denied.

Linn said in a press release, “I had been told for over a month that I was not a subject for investigation or action. The Chief Administrative Officer of the County, Eric Fleming, told me that the investigation and meeting was about the conduct of one disgruntled employee, who had previously made claims against the District Attorneys of Tuolumne and Stanislaus counties."

In the censure, the Board of Supervisors also called upon the District Attorney to resign his position.  The sustained conduct of District Attorney Linn is contrary to an environment that is free of discrimination, harassment, and abuse, and unless such misconduct ceases immediately, his resignation is the only way to ensure that the department’s employees are no longer subjected to such mistreatment.

While the board asked for Linn to resign, they cannot fire him because he is an elected official independent of the board. Linn made it very clear that he would not resign from office and demanded a public hearing about the accusations which he says the law allows for. In the mean time Linn said he would continue to investigate the board for public corruption and would seek reelection so that he can continue his work of cleaning up the corruption in the Madera County Government Center.

Madera County Deputy CAO and Human Resource director Adrienne Calip stated in a press release, “Today’s act of censure is a strong message that the Board of Supervisors is committed to the well-being of County employees, and that similar acts committed by agency officers or employees will not and cannot be tolerated.”

However she has not returned BVN’s repeated phone calls to ask why the county employee’s safety was not taken into account in 2014 when a county employee accused CAO Eric Fleming of sexual assault at a local bar during a county function. Like with the DA situation, the county hired a private firm to investigate the administration for a hostile work enviroment but has refused to release the results. Big Valley News covered the accusation in an exclusive report.

Fleming was absent from Monday’s meeting.

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