Sheriff’s deputies served a search warrant on the Santa Monica home of Los Angeles County Supervisor Shelia Kuehl this morning in connection with allegations of wrongdoing over a contract for advertising on County trains and buses. 

Kuehl said she was forewarned by County attorneys that the Sheriff would be searching her home over the old case but she was unprepared for the number of deputies and the vagueness of the warrant when it arrived at 7 a.m. 

According to Kuehl, the warrant allowed deputies to seize anything that they felt could have been used in the commission of a felony. She said the lack of specifics should worry anyone and that she felt the judge who signed the warrant did so without justification. 

“Obviously this judge signed off on a warrant with insufficient or any kind of claims because they didn’t know what they were looking for, there’s nothing to find. I mean, there would be nothing in my house related to a five-year-old, six-year-old, seven-year-old, contract at Metro, nothing,” she said.

The search warrant said Deputies could take personal property that establishes the identity of the individuals in the home, any computer hardware, any computer software, any computer-related documentation, any passwords and any cellular phones.

Kuehl said deputies took her phones, computers and memorabilia items connected to her time on several TV shows in the 1950’s and 60s. 

“I’m not the kind of person who blows up and calls him names but this was really outrageous, coming at 7 in the morning with a warrant that says nothing, taking old items from my old TV series, the whole thing is really ridiculous and it’s based on nothing, there is no investigations,” she said.  

The case dates back to an investigation into a contract awarded to Peace Over Violence to operate a sexual harassment hotline for Metro. The contract did not come through the Board of Supervisors but a former metro employee alleged Kuehl advocated for Peace Over Violence to receive the work as she is personal friends with Patricia Giggans, the organization’s executive director. 

The Sheriff had previously searched Metro’s headquarters and the offices of Peace Over Violence and those searches were called political in nature as the nonprofit had been critical of the Sheriff and Giggans served as Kuehl’s appointee on the Civilian Oversight Commission that has advocated for greater transparency in the Sheriff’s Department. 

On Wednesday, detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Public Corruption Unit served search warrants at multiple locations including the homes Kuehl and Giggans.  Also searched were offices located at: Los Angeles County Hall of Administration, Peace Over Violence Headquarters, and LA Metro Headquarters.

In a statement, the Sheriff’s Department said it was an active investigation and they wouldn’t provide any additional comment.

Kuehl said the allegations related to the contract lack substance and that while all five members of the board now expect to be harassed by the Sheriff over their political differences, the most recent searches were an escalation.

“This woman has fantasized this completely in her mind and made it her job to keep it going but you can see a responsible sheriff would not have allowed this to happen based this woman’s fantasies,” said Kuehl Wednesday morning.