Pictured – Gene James Truck backed up to a homeless man’s tent blowing exhaust in to it. What a peach of a guy James is. Also note the ego plate on the truck too.
Stolen Valor Act of 2013
A revised version of the statute, the Stolen Valor Act of 2013, specifically amends the federal criminal code to make it a crime for someone to claim they have served in the military, embellish their rank or fraudulently claim having received a valor award specific in the Act, with the intention of obtaining money, property, or other tangible benefits by convincing another that he or she received the award. Under this act, fraudulent claims about military service can be subject to a fine, imprisonment for not more than one year, or both for an individual who, with intent to obtain money, property, or other tangible benefits, fraudulently holds himself or herself to be a recipient of:
Medal of Honor
Distinguished Service Cross
Air Force Cross
Combat Action Ribbon
Combat Infantryman’s Badge
Combat Action Badge
Combat Medical Badge
Combat Action Medal
Any replacement or duplicate medal for such medal as authorized by law
Provided above is a summary of the federal law about Stolen Valor. Next up is the actual language:
‘‘(b) FRAUDULENT REPRESENTATIONS ABOUT RECEIPT OF MILITARY DECORATIONS OR MEDALS.—Whoever, with intent to obtain money, property, or other tangible benefit, fraudulently holds oneself out to be a recipient of a decoration or medal described in subsection (c)(2) or (d) shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than one year, or both.’’.
The referenced part of the Federal Code has far more than the above list in it.
There was a complaint and a lot of controversy about San Clemente Councilman Gene James and his stolen valor. There is now video proof he did it. Gene James never earned the Legion of Merit. His DD214 confirms as such. Yet TWICE he was at events wearing said medal. 2016 and 2019.
The second video contains still shots from both USO event appearances in 2016 and 2019.
Your intrepid blogger is aware that the OC DA’s office was alerted to this when Gene James was a candidate. Did they have this proof then? What will they do with the complaint now that it appears to be substantiated?
There is an active and ongoing lawsuit from a mail vendor whose reputation was allegedly injured from printing the Stolen Valor lie. Gene James actually asked the City of San Clemente to defend said lawsuit!
Ladies and Gentlemen, the Gene James experience. 100% Credit to the San Clemente Times and several fine folks from San Clemente that sent me all kinds of stuff. I had to wait until the Recall Election was clear and the recriminations before I could get to this. I am reprinting the SC Times article un-edited and with no commentary. We all know Gene James is a disaster with liens, judgements, several busted marriages with abuse… so this fits right in. Recall this loser, people.
By Shawn Raymundo
An audio recording of a June 25 traffic stop involving Mayor Pro Tem Gene James made public by a local media outlet has the elected official taped in a “confrontational” encounter with a deputy sheriff.
In the nearly 11-minute recording of the stop first published by Local Story TV, James, who campaigned on a pro law-enforcement stance, denied any wrongdoing, and was—as police describe in subsequent written reports—“confrontational,” “visibly upset” and “defensive,” while also accusing Deputy J. Medina of ulterior motives.
“I stopped you because you came off the freeway offramp without stopping before you made the right-hand turn,” Medina explained to James in the parking lot of the McDonald’s off Avenida Pico and the 5 Freeway. “Did you see the red light?”
“Look, of course, I saw the red light. If you think I didn’t stop, let’s just go with that. OK?” responded James.
“Because I know what this is about,” James added.
Replying, Medina asked the councilmember, “What is this about?”
“Your (expletive) boss, (Edward) Manhart,” James said, referring to San Clemente’s then-chief of police services.
After a brief pause, Medina said he didn’t know what James was talking about, nor did he know who the elected official was.
“All I know is, you ran that red light,” the deputy said.
San Clemente Times made multiple attempts to reach James for comment over the phone and through email, but as of this posting, he had not yet responded to those requests.
In the run-up to last year’s city council race in which James was seeking reelection, he campaigned for standing “with our sheriff deputies.” His campaign materials also touted the construction of a new OCSD substation at City Hall as an accomplishment.
“Under my leadership as your councilman, a new sheriff substation was approved and a new Public Safety Committee with community representation was created,” his website stated. “Let’s strengthen the bonds between our city and OCSD and not weaken them.”
The city on Tuesday, Sept. 21, is set to host a ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the opening of the new substation.
James demonstrated support for law enforcement during an April 2019 council meeting in which he, speaking then as a private citizen, slammed Councilmember Kathy Ward, the city’s current mayor, for making critical remarks about OCSD’s handling of the homelessness issue.
Responding to an interview request with the “John and Ken” radio show on KFI AM 640, Ward had stated in an email that “Our Council cares very much about the situation. It wasn’t until the sheriff’s ‘wussed’ out on us that programs stopped working.”
Irked by the use of the word “wuss” to describe the “brave and dedicated men and women” who serve as officers in San Clemente, James had demanded Ward issue an apology for her comments, which he called “grotesquely beneath contempt.”
“Blaming our deputies for inadequate measures and actions of the previous council is grotesquely beneath contempt,” he had said, later adding, “Ms. Ward, you owe the men and women of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department an apology. It’s called courage, class, ethics and leadership.”
Those comments and demands for an apology, however, contrast with James’ behavior as described by a pair of internal OCSD memos. Following the June 25 stop, Medina, along with his superior, Sgt. M. Hudson, filed reports directly with Manhart that outlined the elected official’s confrontational and defensive manner.
“I explained the reason I stopped him. Gene admitted he saw the red light and became confrontational and visibly upset,” Medina, recounting his experience with the councilmember, wrote in the memo.
“When Deputy J. Medina approached his vehicle, James was immediately on the defensive, making statements about knowing why he was pulled over,” wrote Hudson based on his own listening of the audio recording. He added that “James continued to raise his voice at (Medina).”
Hudson had been listening to Medina’s radio communications during the stop, when he overheard police dispatch confirm James as the owner of a gray pickup truck. He requested that Medina contact him immediately after the stop.
“I recognized the name as possibly San Clemente’s Interim Mayor. I waited for Deputy J. Medina to clear the car stop and advised him to call me asap,” Hudson wrote, later praising Medina. “I listened to Deputy J. Medina’s PVS audio. Deputy J. Medina was professional and explained in detail to James what he needed James to provide to him, and why he was stopped.”
For James, the late-June traffic stop wasn’t his first open disagreement with members of the sheriff’s department.
James had written then that he saw Barnes make “conflicting statements” related to OCSD’s position on the subject, which “only muddied the waters further.” He added that communications with Barnes had the councilmember “pondering the city’s relationship with OCSD.”
“I have spoken with Sheriff Barnes, and there is no doubt in my mind he has an extreme level of frustration with San Clemente,” James had written in the Dec. 29, 2019 post. “His words to me in a recent meeting at his office were, ‘I have no obligation to provide law enforcement services to the City of San Clemente.’”
This past June, during a city council budget workshop meeting, an exchange between James and Manhart got heated when the councilmember cut the former chief off from finishing his objection to an idea James had floated moments earlier.
“When I look at one deputy costing us about … $325,000—I don’t want to send shockwaves through OCSD—but it appears, to reduce by one deputy, that would give us some leverage in the budget to do some other things,” James said.
Citing the protests that San Clemente and other cities throughout the nation saw last year, Manhart opposed such a proposal and explained that he was concerned with the thought of eliminating public safety positions.
“I don’t know if you were paying attention last year to all the civil unrest issues and how many deputies,” Manhart said. “Additionally, I would never support anything like that, but you’re going to do what you’ve got to do, but I would absolutely never recommend that.”
“Capt. Manhart, I was paying attention,” James later responded.
“Then that wouldn’t be an issue then,” Manhart said, “because we would not be talking about losing a deputy if you saw the challenges that we have …”
“OK, I’ve had it,” James interjected, holding his hand up. “OK, that’s enough.”
It would be a month and a half later when James would find himself in the parking lot of San Clemente’s McDonald’s challenging an officer’s decision to pull him over for an apparent traffic violation.
During the recording of the stop, James reaffirmed his innocence, stating that he did stop at the red light before again inferring that Medina had pulled over the councilmember because of Manhart.
“I stopped, but I know what this is about,” James said.
“You did not stop, sir. I would have had no reason to stop you if you had come to a complete stop like you were supposed to,” Medina responded. “I don’t know what you’re inferring.”
“Yes, you do,” James said.
“If you’d like to enlighten me, I’d be glad to hear it,” Medina said.
“Listening to James yell at Deputy J. Medina and accusing him of pulling him over for ulterior motives, as well as having to be told multiple times to provide his insurance information, made me thankful the interaction was recorded,” Hudson concluded in his memo to Manhart.
In an emailed statement regarding the incident, OCSD spokesperson Carrie Braun described the relationship between James and Manhart, who was reassigned to OCSD’s air support in mid-July, as a “professional working” one.
“Captain Manhart’s relationship with Councilman James was a professional working relationship,” Braun said in the email.
Answering a question on whether Manhart’s reassignment out of San Clemente had anything to do with James, Braun said, “Captain Manhart’s reassignment to the Air Support Unit was in no way related to this incident, and in fact was planned prior to the traffic stop.”
Braun declined to provide further comment related to the incident.
The city is already in to this thing for $25K and James wants $100K authorized.
If Gene James was not a malignant narcissist liar, con artist, cheater, abuser, in debt up to his eyeballs disaster he would not have legal problems. The dude has lost 4 judgements in his lifetime. How many normal people have even been in court 4 times? The dude has more liens than a prostetic surgery ward at a military hospital.
So – it looks like the San Clemente City Attorney is helping to fleece the taxpayers of San Clemente in to defending the crazed and disturbed Gene James – who can’t afford to defend himself as he still has active liens (that likely include garnishments).
Gene James, ladies and gentlemen blowing exhaust from his truck in to the tents of homeless people. This sort of bullying and abuse is his standard problem solving, but it appears that Jim Bieber’s lawsuit attempting to hold him accountable for being a filthy liar has him running to the city attorney for his binkey.
Learn more about Gene James below:
Another offshoot of the investigation in to William “Bill” Brough was our expose’ on Gene James. We learned that he has had a lifetime pattern of abusing women, abusing the homeless in San Clemente, 11 Liens, 4 Judgements and a Foreclosure. James’ record of legal issues dates back to 1992 according to what we know and may well extend prior. In addition there is/was an investigation in to blatant “stolen valor” campaigning either by James or people supporting him. What made me the angriest was hearing from the women he abused and seeing what he was doing to the homeless people in San Clemente.
Two of the biggest pieces of garbage in Orange County Political History flank a complete failure of a State Senator whose ego is so out of control she refused to acknowledge the evidence against either of these monsters.
There is a very well known axiom in Orange County Politics – you can’t get anywhere in San Clemente unless you oppose the toll road. Yet, here is Diane Harkey palling around with Mr. Anti-Toll Road Gene James. Did Harkey call her former employee Jeff Corless to tell him what she was doing in San Clemente? Did Harkey call anyone and seek their advice before doing two events and running a current drill for Gene James?
You have GOT to be kidding me. I had a confidential informant reach out to me to inform me that Diane Harkey held not one, but TWO events for Gene James!
I guess we should photoshop Diane Harkey in place of Pat Bates? Irony: Bates is said to be looking at running against Harkey for supervisor as well…
It gets better – Harkey who at one time employed the accused rapist and proven serial sexual harasser Bill Brough has been palling around with Mr. Gene James in San Clemente. Perhaps our exposes’ on stale endorsements were a harbinger of where Mrs. Harkey would have to go in order to shore up support as the vultures are circling around OC Sup D5.
But Gene James? Similar to Harkey his background looks like threemile island:
He was extremely racist and bigoted; spewing insults at different ethnic groups consistently, regardless of present company. At a backyard BBQ with a group of Little League players and parents, he made a very derogatory comment about Mexicans. John M. took offense, stating his wife was Mexican and worked at Ralph’s. There was another insult by Gene and an exchange from John. Gene instantly lunged at John, pushed him back in the chair, put his hands around his neck and started to choke him out. It took 3 men to get Gene off John as he was starting to lose consciousness. John didn’t have Gene arrested at the time, fearing that it would make matters worse for Diane.
The Diane referenced is ANOTHER of Gene James’ exes. He has several and is known to cheat on his currents as well based on what I have been told but have no direct personal knowledge of.
Diane was trying to stay in the relationship until she could get her money back, foolishly thinking that was a possibility. Gene and Diane started to see a MFT in San Clemente. The therapist advised Diane separately that she felt Gene was “mentally unstable and extremely dangerous” and when he was finally moved out of the house, she told Diane it wasn’t safe to ever be alone with Gene. Gene was also very homophobic. Diane had a party at her home with about 20-30 Catholic school mothers in attendance with a gay man who dresses as a woman character from Alabama who sells kitchen products in a direct sales company. It is a very funny show and he is a top salesperson. He now tours nationally doing his shows. Gene came home early in a rage, threatened the entertainer and scared and intimidated the guests. Several women stayed behind until Gene appeared to settle down and they were able to escort him out safely. Gene later tracked down the entertainer, contacting him with through emails and phone calls, threatening to physically harm and/or kill him. The entertainer contacted Diane to notify her of this as he too was very concerned for her safety. Diane had to go out of town for business for several days and had her sons stay at their prior nanny’s home. Gene was infuriated and did not come home when Diane returned. She packed up his belongings and he was out. Diane contacted an attorney for legal advise; sold the engagement ring and hired the attorney. Gene still owed Diane $25000 for money loaned him to pay off creditors. Gene responded with numerous threatening phone calls and letters to both Diane and the attorney. The attorney told Diane that Gene was clearly mentally unstable and dangerous (as the MFT had as well) . The attorney recommended Diane accept the $12000 Gene finally offered and Diane agreed to settle.
What a great endorsement for Diane Harkey. If Harkey is helping a monster like this raise money, and she has a clear personal pattern herself of being in legal trouble, garnishments, questionable judgement, drama and the like… why would any sane, rational person put her back in office?