Newport Beach Police Department Management Is a Cesspool of Adultery, Lies & Retaliation Against Honest Officers, Lawsuit States

Newport Beach Police Department Adultery Lies.jpg
Is the Newport Beach PD a parody of honest policing?
You can't find a more ideal example of a great police officer in California than John Hougan was at the Newport Beach Police Department (NBPD).

It is not just that Hougan was excellent at crime solving.

Unlike other Orange County cops--including several warped officers inside the NBPD, the 22-year veteran wasn't a hot-head with the sensibilities of obnoxious teenage jerks looking for opportunities to flex power**.

He is an honorable, mature man who never considered his badge a cheap ticket to lie, cheat and abuse citizens.

I can make those assertions because as a journalist who has covered crime in Southern California for nearly 17 years, I've watched Hougan--the lead detective in the infamous Haidl Gang Rape case--in action.

But, sadly, being a decent cop and an even better human being doesn't always win friends.

This week, Hougan filed a civil lawsuit that outlines alleged disgusting conduct by fellow NBPD cops after he refused to lie for police management in a lawsuit brought by another abused officer, Sergeant Neil Harvey.

Put under oath during the Harvey matter, Hougan admitted that Captain Dale Johnson, one of the officers promoted over Harvey, had impregnated an informant despite being married, repeatedly bragged about his sexual escapades on duty and used work time for a sexual rendezvous with a mistress, according to the lawsuit.

Dale Johnson Newport Beach Police.jpg
Captain Fertilizer: How did Dale Johnson pay an informant?
Hougan also testified that Police Chief John Klein, who retired after the Harvey verdict, had handcuffed a drunk female officer to a bed after having a three-way sexual romp and that the other male was then promoted over Harvey, who Klein erroneously believed was gay and, thus, worthy of being crapped on even though he was a superb cop.

Despite the sensational nature of the observations, a 2009 Orange County jury found Hougan more credible than a slew of higher ranking officers (including Johnson) who insisted the department was ethically spotless and that nobody had rigged promotions for management-favored cops over a more qualified, independent Harvey.

The jury awarded Harvey $1.7 million in damages including lost wages and retirement benefits.

According to Hougan's lawsuit, he returned to the NBPD after testifying in the Harvey case and was called a "traitor." He found a picture of a bomb taped to his office desk. [City Manager Dave Kiff: Are you going to tolerate police officers committing crimes on your watch?] He also claims in the litigation that Captain Johnson called him into his office to express displeasure that he had not regurgitated management's spin to the jury.

Police management then decided to perform what they called a "random audit" of Hougan's office computer and allegedly found "out of policy computer use." In response, Hougan--who had a blemish-free, 20-year career to that point--was demoted from sergeant to officer.

The next step of retaliation occurred when Lieutenant Jeff Lu announced that the department had opened an internal investigation into--get a load of this pathetic crock--whether Hougan had run over a bird while patrolling the beach.

(No related dead bird was ever found.)

Jeff Lu Newport Beaceh police birdman.jpg
Foul ethics: Lt. Jeff Lu still can't find that damn bird
Several months after the fowl incident, NBPD threw caution and respectability to the wind and fired Hougan based on the alleged computer misuse from a year earlier.

According to Hougan's lawsuit, the department also harassed his wife, who worked as a police dispatcher.

Superior Court Judge Linda S. Marks has been assigned to handle Hougan's case, which was filed by John A. Girardi and Lawrence J. Lennemann.

Two other well-respected, ex-Newport Beach cops--Craig Frizzell and Steve Shulman--are also suing the department for illegal promotion practices and retaliation for honesty.

**Howya doin, ex-Lt. Craig Fox, Kent Eischen and Ryan S. Walker?

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22 comments
Retired
Retired

 NOR, you caught me red handed. I wasn't a back stabber thus I was DQ'd.

NOR
NOR

Retired, You probably didn't make the cut at NBPD.

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

 Damn it is annoying when assbites cut & paste other comments as posts for free advertising...

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

 Watch it Mox, they will start following you with their Hell o cop ter

TR153
TR153

Dan, had you bothered to actually READ the lawsuit as I suggested, you would know that the accusation of illegally tape recording an employee and using it as grounds for that employee's termination was, indeed, CHIEF JAY JOHNSON.   I don't mind people replying to my comments--in fact, I welcome it--but  I do mind ill-informed comments that misconstrue the truth.  Please take the time to do your homework before you start spouting fallacies.

Mattfisherrevolution
Mattfisherrevolution

I don't think a great officer would lie and not stand up for another great officer.

Retired
Retired

In the distant past, while working for another department, I decided to apply to NBPD as a lateral applicant. I tested and was #1 on the eligibility list. As I went through the background process and had more dealings with the department and especially the departments personnel officer, I really did not like what I was seeing. The departments personnel officer was one of the biggest jerks I had ever met. I decided that there was no way I wanted to work there. Several friends who worked there told me how F'd up the place was and discouraged me from taking employment there. I stayed with my old department and promoted . Looking back at the events at NBPD of the past 2 decades, I made the right decision. As for Chief Johnson, he is an excellent leader. Time will tell if he can change the culture at NBPD.

Dan
Dan

Chief Jay Johnson replaced the old chief under which these accusations and lawsuit were filed. Your facts date prior to his arrival from the LBPD, similarly you may be confusing your Johnsons. 

Stan
Stan

He Joseph Langhorne or "JJ" is one of the training Officers at Orange County Sheriffs training center. Like a drill instructor. he puts his personal cell phone on the board at the begginning of the training course 10-16 weeks. He gets paid to physically and mentally abuse SSO's and CSA trainees for the 10-16 week period. Be*ts them down physically and mentally. Then after they graduate he starts a friendly relationship checking in on his flock. begins flirting, then sexting and pop goes the dopamine because the man whoo was so physically and mentally abusive is bl*wing sunshine up their tail. Add another pair of panties to his collection. Its the perfect job for a narcissist or Sociopath. I'm sure he does not want his fellow deputies doing the same thing with his wife Sara Langhorne. This is a warning to any female in the Orange County sheriff program and for any female about to go into the academy. It should also be a warning for any man who's girlfriend or wife is going through the academy. This man has no feelings and is in need of help. Joseph langhorne is a cheater. If his wife checked his cell phone records she would probably start to see the light but thats her path. he does have everyone fooled and if Internal affairs or his commanding officers found out he would probably be promoted or reassigned without a mark on his record.

Tim
Tim

Ive been in Newport for over 20 years and the cops have always been on-the-take assholes.  There are a handful of good officers but the fraternity as a whole is a crock of shitheads.

Dan Palisades
Dan Palisades

Hcloudp, improving safety is not justification for breaking other laws or violating constitutional protections. I think many of the departmental challenges are carryovers from the previous administration. My personal opinion as a resident is that the department has improved substantially since Johnson took the helm. I am in no way absolving anyone in the department of wrongdoing if the accusations in the lawsuit are proved true. As I said, I do not know about the personal relationships inside the department. As far as improved safety, we no longer have obvious big$ drug deals at Big Corona with guys packing heat, mules, managers, lookouts, etc. Those have been cut way back (sorry readers and some of my neighbors). Many of the associated characters did not respect the community and they committed opportunity crimes while here and trashed the neighborhood. Maybe they are at HB this year? Lots of additional safety improvements have been realized under Kiff and Johnson, but I will save some of those for Moxley’s next NBPD story.

Hcloudp
Hcloudp

We could improve safety by breaking other laws and rights (such as the 4th amendement protections of citizens) and I don't know of anyone who would believe this is okay if it IMPROVES public safety at the cost of our Constitutional Protections. Therefore, I don't see you point. Also, How is it safer today than two years ago?

Jamie
Jamie

these two cops are FUGLY!!!    one FATT white one who looks like he came from the 1940s and the other one who looks like a chinese vietnamese mexican indio.

Officer X
Officer X

Unfortunately, this sort of thing is not rare in police departments.  The officers who are most passionate about policing, ethics, doing the right thing, spirit of the law vs. letter of the law, etc., are frequently the most qualified people when promotions come around, but they rarely get promoted.  It seems as though there is a police culture of promoting buttlickers who are not the officers most qualified for the job, but who are viewed favorably because they are cheerleaders for the department.  Unfortunately, command staff views the conscientious officers as malcontents because these officers dare speak up when a superior officer makes a bad decision which endangers the public and other officers, encourages questionable arrests, spends more time on the internet or personal business than supervising their officers in the field, etc.  Command staff can also view lower ranking officers with strong skills as a threat to their own promotional opportunities, and do whatever they can to beat them down.  I've seen people promoted whose sole qualification for a command position seems to be their off-duty friendships with key command staff and their willingness to perform the work of their direct superior, ignoring their own work, so their direct superior can nothing all day long.  It's rather mind boggling.  And this is coming from someone who works at a department that is actually very ethical when dealing with the public.  The sort of thing described in this article doesn't surprise me at all.  There's much more of this going on that the public never learns about.

Dan Palisades
Dan Palisades

Chief Johnson has markedly improved safety in Corona del Mar and other parts of Newport Beach. I am unaware of the internal goings-on of the department, but as an active and sometimes vocal resident, I am much happier with the department today than I was two years ago. I appreciate Moxley’s articles on law enforcement and the courts. I have read all of them and get good laughs and gain some insight from the comments. I think Moxley may someday praise Kiff and Johnson, because eventually he will realize neither of them thinks like thugs.

Metomorphicrocks
Metomorphicrocks

Exactly. Otherwise good is the perfect description. They could be good cops but are not since they ignore illegal or unethical behavior. 

Bill Martin
Bill Martin

Who the fuck can you trust sue the pigs too for they have fire them all

Bill Martin
Bill Martin

Bankrupt Newport hagen....good ... Loser pussy pigs on the loose

Vanessa Perez
Vanessa Perez

This isn't "news" most NB Cops are Dirty Pigs!

Jennifer Patalsky
Jennifer Patalsky

Wow that sucks for all of the awesome cops in that department. :/

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