Liana Lebaron

JUDGE ENDS RESTRAINNG ORDER AGAINST COUNCILMEMBER LEBARON

East County News Service

June 22, 2022 (Lemon Grove) – A judge has lifted a restraining order which had barred Lemon Grove Councilmember Liana LeBaron from her home due to her husband accusing her of assault. The order was ended after LeBaron’s husband, Timothy Howell, told the judge that the couple had sorted matters out civilly.


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LEMON GROVE COUNCILMEMBER TO FACE RESTRAINING ORDER AND POTENTIAL CRIMINAL CHARGES IN COURT AFTER ACCUSATION OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

By Elijah McKee

 

Rebecca Jefferis Williamson contributed to this report.

 

April 29, 2022 (Lemon Grove) — Lemon Grove Councilmember Liana LeBaron was arrested and charged with domestic violence on April 18 by the San Diego County Sheriff’s department, following an altercation with her husband over his life insurance policy.

 

A restraining order was filed the next day under the name Timothy C. Howell, which required that LeBaron leave her home upon its court approval. The protective order will last until May 10, when LeBaron will appear in court to address the issue. 


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BRIGGS FILES LAWSUIT AGAINST LEMON GROVE OVER RECORDS OBSTRUCTION

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Matt Manosh: Lemon Grove City Clerk Audrey Malone denied attorney Cory Briggs' request to inspect public records the day before a proposed censure motion of Councilmember Liana LeBaron.

March 28, 2022 (Lemon Grove) – Attorney Cory Briggs has filed a lawsuit on behalf of the nonprofit Project for Open Government against the city of Lemon Grove. The suit alleges that the city acted illegally in failing to respond to multiple public records requests related to the city’s proposed censure and discplinary actions toward Councilmember Liana LeBaron. The City also denied Briggs access to inspect public records when he came to city hall in person the day before the censure hearing, and has still failed to respond weeks later.

The suit seeks a court order requiring the city to full comply with the California Public Records Act, California Constitution, common law and other applicable laws by disclosing all records requested. Briggs also seeks injunctive relief to inspect and copy public records (or portions allowed by law), as well as attorney fees and legal expenses.


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BRIGGS SENDS LETTER TO LEMON GROVE DEMANDING CORRECTION OF BROWN ACT VIOLATIONS, STATES INTENT TO SUE

By Miriam Raftery

March 14, 2022 (Lemon Grove) – Attorney Cory Briggs, on behalf of the Project for Open Government, has sent a letter to Lemon Grove’s elected officials demanding that the City cure and correct alleged violations of the Ralph M. Brown Act, California’s open government law. The letter, dated March 10, also announces an intent to sue the City over actions that Briggs claims deprive Councilmember Liana LeBaron of rights to express herself and represent her constituents.

Specifically, Briggs contends that several actions taken to penalize LeBaron should have been on the Council agenda, but were not. These include:

  • Prohibiting LeBaron and other Councilmembers from interacting with staff regarding city services, except through the City Manager
  • Revoking Councilmembers’ access codes to City Hall

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LEMON GROVE TAKES A BREATH AT THE BRINK OF CENSURE

 


Council backs off censure of Councilmember LeBaron after her supporters weigh in and an attorney questions legality of proposed action


By Elijah McKee


March 10, 2022 (Lemon Grove) — “It’s a sad day in Lemon Grove. We’re better than this,” expressed Mayor Raquel Vasquez near the end of her remarks during Lemon Grove’s special City Council meeting on Tuesday night.

 

"This brings me no joy,” echoed Councilmember Jennifer Mendoza, though the two voted on opposite sides over whether to censure Councilmember Liana LeBaron.

 

The meeting was held for one reason only — to debate a resolution that would have formally condemned LeBaron’s behavior. The severity of the resolution was evident by its verbs, which included condemn, reject, admonish, refrain, cease and desist. (See ECM’s prior coverage of the proposed censure resolution.)

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LEMON GROVE TO CONSIDER CENSURE OF COUNCILMEMBER LEBARON MARCH 8, THREATENS TO SEEK RESTRAINING ORDER

By Miriam Raftery

Photo, left: Councilmember Liana LeBaron

Updated March 6, 2022 8:30 p.m. with comments from Councilman Gastil.

March 6, 2022 (Lemon Grove)  -- After weeks of contentious meetings, the Lemon Grove City Council will hold a special meeting on Tuesday, March 8 to consider a resolution for the Council majority to condemn alleged misconduct by Councilmember Liana LeBaron including disruptions at Council meetings and accusations made against staffers that the City contends are false.

The City Attorney has also sent a letter to LeBaron and other Councilmembers threatening legal action against her. 

Le Baron has denied wrongdoing. An attorney representing the Project for Open Government has also weighed in, criticizing the City's actions.


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LEMON GROVE COUNCIL MEETING UNRAVELS, ADJOURNS EARLY

By Elijah McKee

February 17, 2022 — Sixty-two — that is the number of times Mayor Racquel Vasquez hit her gavel during Lemon Grove’s City Council meeting on February 15, 2022. In the end, the meeting was adjourned early and scheduled to resume two days later at 6 p.m.


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LEMON GROVE SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS DENIED OFF-SITE ALCOHOL PERMIT DURING TENSE COUNCIL HEARING

 

By Elijah McKee

 

December 14, 2021 (Lemon Grove) — “We are a mom and pop store,” said Alisha Hormiz, as she stood at the podium facing the Lemon Grove City Council. “We want to earn your trust, and to work with you every step of the way,” she pleaded. “So please give us a chance.”

 

Alisha and her spouse, Peter Hormiz, have run the Discount Market convenience store on the corner of Broadway and Main Street for the past 21 years. Recently, they requested City permission to sell ten percent of their inventory as alcohol, both to help them financially and to listen to their customers’ wishes. The Planning Commission denied their request for the Conditional Use Permit (CUP) they needed — an appeal to the City Council was now their final option to try to win their permit. 

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LEMON GROVE TOY DRIVE ALSO AIDS LOCAL BUSINESSES

By Councilmember-Elect Liana LeBaron

Photo:  Aubree Russell from Kids Fashion Network and Liana LeBaron with Alonso, the owner of family run Islander Grill on Broadway in Lemon Grove

November 24, 2020 (Lemon Grove) -- Kids Fashion Week Network and Lemon Grove Parents United present a community centered Lemon Grove Toy Drive. To accommodate varying preferences, toys can be dropped off at the COVID-friendly drive though event at Treganza Heritage Park, 3200 Main St. in Lemon Grove on Dec. 13th from 1-3 p.m. or at any of the participating Lemon Grove Mom-and-Pop local businesses now through Dec. 12.

All wanting to experience neighborly holiday cheer are invited to come on December 13th to donate their toy in the city’s beautiful and historically rich Treganza Park. Those who donate at the event can pick up a cup of hot chocolate provided by Nitro Monkey Coffee as a small thank you gesture. Thoughtful shoppers can also shop at the hyper-local Lemon Grove vendor tables that will be selling hot items ranging from handmade pet clothing to handmade holiday ornaments.


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IN LEMON GROVE CITY COUNCIL TOWN HALL, CANDIDATES ADDRESS CITY IN CRISIS, OFFER ONLY LIMITED SOLUTIONS

By John Sepulvado

View full video of ECM’s forum for Lemon Grove candidates:  click here.

Scroll down for highlights and analysis of the forum.

October 9, 2020 (Lemon Grove) -- In the past 25 years, Lemon Grove has been battered. Revenues for the city have plummeted as businesses have fled. Currently the city is experiencing a $1.5 million budget shortfall. Major thoroughfares are in disrepair, while major civic investments like the Lemon Grove Recreation Center sit underused as the city continues to struggle financially. 

Many of the buildings - including prime real estate on Broadway, sit empty and under-utilized. Many of the unhoused neighbors suffer from extreme health conditions that go untreated. Residents complain about policing from the Sheriff’s office. The Council spends most of its budget on policing through the Sheriff, yet some businesses and residents complain of crime and say more law enforcement protection is needed.  (This year’s crime stats have not yet been released.)

These problems are compounded by a lawsuit in which a candidate for Mayor - Christopher WIlliams - is suing the city over a meeting on his proposed marijuana dispensaries followed by a pool party with alcohol that ended in an alleged assault. The spectacular suit is driving a deep wedge among current and aspiring council members.


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LEMON GROVE CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATES TO PARTICIPATE IN FORUM SEPT. 16

 

View video of our Lemon Grove City Council candidates forum:  Click here

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Lemon Grove candidates David Arambula, George Gastil, Liana Lebaron, and Teresa Rosiak

 

August 29, 2020 (Lemon Grove) – All four Lemon Grove City Council candidates have agreed to participate in a candidate forum hosted by East County Magazine on Wednesday, September 16 at 7 p.m. This is your opportunity to learn more about the candidates looking to represent you, as well as to ask questions on issues of importance community.

The forum will be held on Zoom due to COVID-19 and will be livestreamed at https://www.facebook.com/EastCountyMagazine.  Video will also be posted later at www.EastCountyMagazine.org and audio will be aired on KNSJ radio. You can send in questions before noon on the 16h to editor@eatcountymagazine.org. ECM editor Miriam Raftery will moderate the forum, which is made possible through a Facebook Journalism Project grant.

The four candidates are:


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