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Councilman mum after event promoted on partner’s Web site becomes crime scene

The announcement on SDGLN.com promoting the water-gun fight in Balboa Park.

Neither officials at District 5 City Councilman Carl DeMaio’s council offices, nor at his campaign headquarters are commenting on the fact that DeMaio’s life partner’s media company helped publicize a midnight water-gun battle that became a crime scene in Balboa Park.

“I have no comment on that,” said DeMaio spokesman, Jeff Powell, speaking by phone from the councilman’s offices at City Hall. Similarly, hours after a voicemail was left at the councilman’s mayoral campaign headquarters regarding the issue, the campaign had offered no response.

Costs for restoring damage done at the storied koi pond in Balboa Park after a weekend melee that included water-gun fights, invasion of the koi fish’s habitat by more than 500 intruding pairs of trampling (human) feet, and damaged municipal equipment has been estimated at $10,000.

An announcement on the Web site of San Diego Gay & Lesbian News (SDGLN.com) promoted attendance of what calendar columnist Jim Winsor, termed “a very unique and unusual event.” Winsor gave former SDGLN.com contributor, “Ken St. Pierre and others” credit for organizing the midnight water-gun fight in Balboa Park.

Following is the text of the announcement, which includes a link to what appears to be a now-deactivated Facebook events page:



And this Saturday, we have a very unique and unusual event coming up: A midnight water gun fight in Balboa Park being organized by Ken St. Pierre and others. The idea is to “… meet at the large fountain in front of San Diego Natural History Museum at 11:45 pm (near Park Boulevard). First “squirt” will be at the stroke of midnight and then it is a free-for-all of water gun madness!!!”

The event is BYOWG (bring your own water gun) and pool attire is suggested, as everyone will be getting soaking wet. The fascinating thing is, this event has already generated LOTS of attention; as I write this over 900 people have already indicated themselves as “Going” on Facebook, and organizers are hoping the event will continue to go viral and attract over 1,000 potential attendees. So yeah, this should be interesting!

As of this writing, the above announcement is still visible at SDGLN.com


For his part, SDGLN.com editor, Ken Williams was either unaware of the fact that the event had been announced on the Web site he manages, or doesn’t consider posting times, dates and locations of such events to be the same as promoting them.

“That’s not true,” Williams told San Diego LGBT Weekly when asked to comment on reports that SDGLN.com had promoted the late-night water-gun battle. “Our event is Cityfest. SDGLN had nothing to do with that event.” Williams said he could not speak for SDPix, another Hale Media property, owned by Johnathan Hale. Hale is Councilman Carl DeMaio’s life partner. Hale has not returned LGBT Weekly’s phone calls as of this writing.

According to some news reports, more than one koi fish died from lack of oxygen or water after the invasion. However, City Councilman Todd Gloria, whose district Balboa Park lies in, told LGBT Weekly that no fish deaths have been confirmed. Gloria also told LGBT Weekly that anyone who helped promote the incursion into the koi pond or who helped cause damage to city property should be held accountable.

“Anyone causing damage to public property should be held accountable, no matter who they are or who they know,” said Councilman Todd Gloria.

While some in the local media have quoted San Diego Police Dept. officials as having said Balboa Park closes at 10 p.m., the park’s official city Web site says the park grounds are open 24 hours per day. Councilman Gloria confirmed the open-24-hours policy; however pointing out that large events must have a permit. No permit was requested for the water-gun battle, which police are now calling a crime scene. LGBT Weekly is still awaiting comment from San Diego Police media relations officials.


Short URL: http://lgbtweekly.com/?p=27477

Posted by on Aug 13, 2012. Filed under Around the City, Top Highlights. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

8 Comments for “Councilman mum after event promoted on partner’s Web site becomes crime scene”

  1. Obviousy DeMaio and his staff know well in advance of the Water Fight in Balboa Park.

    I am sure Carl did the mature, responsible thing and asked the Mayor for his thoughts, and called the Police Chief so they could have staff on hand to k
    eep things happy, festive but under control.

    Oh –Carl did nothing. NOTHING? Really? REALLY?

    His “Leadership” is a bit weak, don’t you think? Maybe he should pay for the damages, AFTER he admits he was at fault for failing to take some respondibility in advance?

    Tell him what you think at CarlDeMaio@SanDiego.gov, with a CC to the editors of your favorite Newspapers.

  2. Johnathan Hale in his letter to the community said that “Big Labor” was behind Turn Your Back on Carl DeMaio because they retwitted and emailed out the event that was created by Kurt Cunningham and managed by him, Jase Watson and myself. Using that same logic an event created by Ken St Pierre, a former employee of SDGLN who is friends with Hale and Williams and promoted or reported on their website would mean that they are responsible for the Waterfight. Wouldn’t that be true?

  3. I don’t believe that the organizers intended for this event to cause havoc to our beloved lilly pond. But seeing that it did I am saddened that the organizers (Ken St. Pierre, Travis Meyer, Jennine E. Estes, Iriz Stone, Christopher Walden, Jim Honeycutt, Matthew Hardick, Kevin Van Wanseele, and Corinna Lewis) haven’t made a public apology, or asked for the attendees to help donate to restore the pond.

    Both Todd Gloria and Carl DeMaio had to have been aware of the event beforehand. It was spreading all over Facebook, and Carl especially because his partner Jonathan Hale attended it. Both should have called the organizers to inquire as to if a permit had been sought, etc. Regardless, I am impressed that Todd immediately issued a statement and sought help from the public to help fix the pond.

    Carl though is dodging the issue and he ‘s lost my vote after seeing his lack of leadership. He’s telling media officials he doesn’t know Ken St. Pierre which is a lie. Ken St. Pierre has been involved in numerous campaign events for Carl, including this one which Ken and others served as hosts: http://sandiego.gaycities.com/events/68058-an-evening-reception-for-carl-demaio

    I hope the pond can be restored to its former beauty soon.

  4. Time for Carl DeMaio to man up and pay for his spouse’s damage to our beautiful Balboa Park! These two are just shameless.

  5. Once again the shoddy “journalism” of lgbt weekly is long on accusations and short on facts.
    Libel comes to mind. Got good attorneys?

  6. Who is this Johnathan Hale, aka John Wyckoff, aka Jonathan Hackett? Part of the answer can be found in the restraining orders that his ex boyfriends have out against him. I sure hope Carl is safe at home.

  7. Who is this Vickie? Aka @Angelonsite aka teamsters union big labor activist who started this story.

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