After announcing on Oct. 22 that he would not accept the police commissioner job next year, Portland Commissioner Randy Leonard
told anyone who would listen that he hoped his decision would end a nasty media “circus” fed by leaks from the police.
“I'm a big guy. I'm in politics. When it starts to involve…members of my family, I draw the line. I just don't need it that bad,” Leonard told WW
last week. “My family's getting thrown under the bus. I just don't need it.”
Leonard said then that he didn't want to go into details. Some of the details are, however, already a matter of public record.
Leonard's daughter, 29-year-old Kara Marie Leonard, jumped bail on a theft charge in April, and entered a drug treatment center in August. This is old gossip within City Hall and presumably the police bureau. But it had not hit the papers.
Was Leonard talking about his daughter last week, when he suggested that police bureau leaks were damaging his family?
“I don't want to talk about her, but yeah,” Leonard said today.
Clearly, someone as far back as a month ago wanted the press to dig in to Leonard's family.
At 7:44 a.m. on Sept. 26, someone writing as “Low Level System Worker” posted a comment
on the Portland Mercury
's website calling attention to “Leonard's conflict of interest” on police issues, “given that his own daughter has warrants out for her arrest here and in Washington State.” The commenter included the case numbers involving Leonard's daughter.
Was the commenter in the bureau, or close to an anti-Leonard faction?
This morning at a press conference where Mayor-elect Sam Adams announced
Commissioner Dan Saltzman would get the police bureau in January, Police Chief Rosie Sizer
that the police bureau had conducted an internal affairs investigation into the website comment, “to see if at least some of the information should have been confidential,” and found no police involvement.
Leonard said today that he had not seen the internal affairs investigation, but said that Sizer has a pattern of targeted leaking.
“Back in June, [Sizer] and I were having this back and forth on duct tape. An hour and a half after I talked to her, Maxine Bernstein did a public information request for all emails within the last 24 hours
related to duct tape,” Leonard said, referring to The Oregonian
's police reporter.
Look for more on this story in Wednesday's WW