Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Seaside Police Department is shrinking, even though the city hasn't laid anyone off yet.
Sources confirm that SSPD Det. Frank Salzillo was recently placed on administrative leave as the city investigates the circumstances of his 2008 hire. Interim Chief Stephen Willis confirms he placed one officer on administrative leave in October, but declines to offer more detail.
The move comes at a turbulent time for the department. Police Chief Steve Cercone separately placed Dep. Chief Louis Lumpkin and Cmdr. Mike Kimball on admin leave in July, and Officer Barry Pasquarosa in early August. Three days later City Manager Ray Corpuz, in turn, suspended Cercone.
Adding Salzillo's suspension to the list, five officers, or more than 10 percent of the department's 47 sworn officers, are now on paid administrative leave. (None of the SSPD's 21 non-sworn staff has been affected.)
SSPD hired Salzillo in early 2008. According to a City Council staff report, Salzillo previously worked for the Sand City Police Department for three years, then spent 15 years in the private sector before completing re-certification at Evergreen College in September 2007.
Sources confirm that Det. Salzillo worked with Det. Nick Borges in SSPD's narcotics division. As the recent president of the Seaside Police Officers Association, Borges has been speaking out on behalf of the POA, which passed a no-confidence vote in Corpuz earlier this month. (Borges reports that as of Tuesday, Nov. 17, Sgt. Frank Martin has replaced him as POA president.)
Salzillo helped launch the now-closed Zillo’s Italian restaurant in Carmel, a past favorite of Cercone’s.
Salzillo could not be reached for comment.
For the latest on the SSPD-City Hall imbroglio, pick up the print edition of Thursday's Weekly, available free countywide.