BY BUDDY NEVINS
The Sun-Sentinel was right.
The newspaper’s editorial board refused to endorse either Democratic candidate for sheriff, calling their campaigns “a bit rank”.
Scott Israel proved the Sun-Sentinel right again this week with an attack mail piece on his opponent Louis Granteed that doesn’t just stretch the truth.
Israel’s mailer is just plain false.
The piece has a Tallahassee PAC’s return address and was mailed from Miami. Todd Wilder, once one of former Sheriff Ken Jenne’s right hand guys, runs the PAC.
Is the PAC independent of the Israel campaign?
That said, I don’t know whether Granteed sexually harassed anybody. And neither does Scott Israel.
Here is what I do know:
The Scott Israel piece mailed this week couldn’t quote newspapers correctly. That makes it false.
It says that “Hollywood taxpayers paid over $200,000 because Hollywood Police Officer Louie Granteed abused his position to cover up and engage in sexual harassment…” Then the piece credits that statement to the Sun-Sentinel on July 12, 1994 and the New Times on July 30, 2009.
Neither newspaper mentioned in the ad wrote anything like that on those dates.
I repeat: Neither article mentioned in the ads said that the city paid anything because of Granteed.
The Sun-Sentinel’s article discussed the suit being filed, so it obviously doesn’t talk about what the city lost in damages. The second New Times article never mentions that the city paid damages because of Granteed.
If I had used such an inaccurate reference when I was a daily newspaper reporter, the paper would have had to publish a retraction.
This Scott Israel advertising is inaccurately sourced. The source cites for some of the claims are tenuous or sloppy. Perhaps the underlying allegations themselves are fairly accurate — or not (depending upon your perceptions). I just don’t know that. But the citation errors undercut the credibility of the claims.
The fact that it hides behind a Tallahassee PAC makes it even more odious.
The candidate is always to blame.
Scott Israel is to blame. The PAC is helping him deceive the public in this piece.
If he deceives the public about this, what kind of a sheriff would he make?