MAYWOOD (CBSLA) — Residents in the small city of Maywood on Wednesday had a few choice words for their mayor, who was recently convicted of animal cruelty.
Maywood Mayor Ramon Medina Mojarro was found guilty Tuesday of one count of animal cruelty and one count of failure to care for an animal, but he said the whole thing is a misunderstanding — “a witch hunt.”
“I’ve been around dogs all my life, and people that [know] me or people that come to my house see the dogs that I have,” Medina told a group attending a city meeting Wednesday night. “They’re all taken care of.”
He was accused of neglecting to care for and feed his pitbull mix, which he kept at his auto shop before he became mayor. Prosecutors said the dog was emaciated, had muscle wasting and suffered a chronic illness but had not been taken to the veterinarian for a long time. The dog was euthanized in 2015.
This was only the latest legal trouble for Medina. In February, investigators with the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office served warrants to search Medina’s office, homes and businesses.
No information was given at the time, but the warrants were served four months after a state auditor reported the city was not properly managing public funds.
“You’re a criminal, and you should not be making any decisions for our city,” resident Mary Mariscal told Medina from the podium.
“He doesn’t deserve to be the mayor, and you guys don’t deserve to be there because you’ve been supporting him,” Heather Wilson told council members as she pointed her finger at Medina. “You all need to resign tonight.”
Wilson will have to wait a bit longer, however.
Medina did not speak to CBS2 News, but his attorney released a statement calling his conviction “a politically motivated witch hunt without any substantial evidence.”
Medina could face up to one year in jail for the misdemeanor convictions. His sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 7.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)