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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact Lawrence Robert
COSTA MESA CITY COUNCILMEMBER JIM RIGHEIMER AND FORMER COSTA MESA CITY COUNCILMEMBER STEVE MENSINGER REACH $607,500 SETTLEMENT IN POLICE UNION MISCONDUCT CASE
Irvine, California- After 5 years of litigation, former Costa Mesa Mayor Steve Mensinger, current Costa Mesa Councilman Jim Righeimer and his wife, Lene Righeimer announce the settlement of their civil case filed in August 2013 against the Costa Mesa Police Officer Association and the law firm it hired to illegally track Mensinger using a GPS device, falsely accuse Jim Righeimer of driving under the influence, and assault Lene Righeimer.
The settlement requires payment by the law firm that represented the Costa Mesa Police Association, Lackie, Dammeier, McGill & Ethir, in the amount of $500,000.00, on behalf of itself, and $100,000.00 on behalf of the Costa Mesa Police Officers Association, and payment by the Costa Mesa Police Officer Association “CMPOA” in the amount of $7,500.00.
After winning an appeal, as well as multiple trial court rulings that the illegal conduct of the CMPA and their law firm were not “protected speech,” exposing the truth about the illegal conduct of these entities and assisting to secure criminal convictions and disclosures in the criminal case, and receiving compensation for their injuries and to punish these entities, Mensinger and the Righeimers have made the decision to end this litigation and unfortunate saga so that they, the City of Costa Mesa, and its citizens, can focus on improving the lives of Costa Mesa’s residents.
Jim Righeimer stated: “Sometimes, in life, its necessary to take a stand against bullies who engage in fraud and misconduct. It’s especially sad when it is a few bad apples in law enforcement cast a bad light on all the great hard-working men and women in our police department.”
Steve Mensinger echoed: “This settlement confirms that we have achieved our objectives of accountability, transparency and compensation. Instead of continuing the litigation, at the expense of our families and the public, we have made the decision to put this saga behind us so we can all get back to business.”
Their attorney, Vince W. Finaldi, Esq., of Manly, Stewart & Finaldi, stated: “The police association and law firm are not paying over a half-million dollars because they didn’t do anything wrong. The settlement is their acknowledgement of the wrongfulness of their conduct towards my clients. Now, the City of Costa Mesa can get back to business, and hopefully its citizens demand an internal investigation as to why this occurred in the first place, allowing it to root out the bad actors and take steps to prevent it from occurring in the future.”
Manly, Stewart & Finaldi is California’s leading law firm representing child victims of sexual abuse. The firm has represented more than 150 victims of clergy sexual abuse in California and hundreds of others throughout the United States. The firm also represented plaintiffs in the $140,000,000 settlement against LAUSD in the Miramonte case, the largest sex abuse settlement against a School District in the US. The firm currently represents more than 180 alleged victims of former Michigan State University and U.S. Women’s Gymnastics Olympic Team doctor Larry Nassar. Michigan State University has settled this case for $500,000,000, this is the largest settlement of any personal injury case against a University.
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