Morning Report: School Board, Political Leaders Urge Beiser to Step Down - Voice of San Diego

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Morning Report: School Board, Political Leaders Urge Beiser to Step Down

School Board Trustee Kevin Beiser speaks at the 2014 State of the District. address / Photo by Jamie Scott Lytle

The calls for Kevin Beiser’s resignation are growing. Three of his fellow San Diego Unified board members, including the board president, have called for him to resign Wednesday.

While Beiser has every right to defend himself in court, they said, he cannot serve effectively on the school board while doing so.

Four men told Voice of San Diego that Beiser, a prominent Democrat and math teacher at Castle Park Middle School, had harassed, groped or assaulted them. Each of the men, Andrew Keatts reported, were young and politically ambitious. Two have run for office.

A Sweetwater Union spokesman confirmed Wednesday that Beiser will not be returning to the classroom for at least the next several weeks (part of which includes spring break).

It comes on the heels of a San Diego County Democratic Party resolution calling on Beiser to step down. Several prominent members of the state Legislature and City Council signed a similar statement urging him to resign.

Beiser issued a statement Tuesday saying the allegations are politically motivated and untrue.

Public Rarely Sees What Police Record

Almost every police force in the county has body cameras. But while the cameras have become common, the footage recorded by them is not typically available to the public, Will Fritz explains.

People who request the footage are often denied access outright. Sometimes they’re made to jump through hoops.

Still, officials insist that footage painting police in an unflattering light isn’t being buried.

A new state law was intended as a tool of real transparency.SB 1421 gives the public access to police records involving various types of misconduct or investigations, including the audio and video evidence stemming from shootings and in-custody deaths.

Eight local police unions have sued to stop the release of such records but a judge ruled the records should be public. Other agencies, like the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, say they’ve begun preparing body camera footage for release by redacting portions of the audio and video that are exempt under state law — for instance, the faces of civilian witnesses.

Another state law that goes into effect in July requires agencies to provide video and audio recordings of critical incidents.

Rocky Chavez, Mayoral Candidate

The former Marine colonel wants to return to his roots on the Oceanside City Council, where he served for seven years. Chavez has decided not to run again for the Assembly because Republicans have so little influence over the state’s affairs.

In the North County Report, Jesse Marx caught up with Chavez to talk about his awkward place in the GOP. Chavez earned a reputation in the state Legislature for independence and some Republican activists have never forgotten it.

Marx also writes about the future of Proposition A, an Encinitas law giving residents veto power over major land use changes. The state, the Superior Court and local officials have all taken critical positions on the law because it effectively prevented the city from adopting a plan that identified sites for housing of all income levels.

In Other News

The Morning Report was written by Ry Rivard and Jesse Marx, and edited by Sara Libby.

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