Long time Cuyahoga County Sheriff, Gerald McFaul (pic, center) was sentenced to a year of house arrest by a visiting Judge in Cleveland, Ohio yesterday, after admitting to the court that he is a crook and thief.
McFaul who ran an old-style patronage and bribery business out of his county office in Cleveland, Ohio is the middle guy in the courtroom photo. His son stands to one side and Vice-President Joe Biden's pal, John Climaco, is on McFaul's right in the pic above. McFaul, a former pipe fitter and Cleveland Councilman held an annual clam bake and birthday bash where bundles of cash were passed to him in thick envelopes. His employees were forced to sell clam bake tickets even the Cuyahoga County Courthouse. McFaul was also a drunk and a sexual harasser. He got away with it. Because electoral politics in this old rust belt city was a name game he had life tenure.
McFaul and his ilk represented the easier softer way into a lucrative law enforcement career: know him, be related to him, be married to someone related to him, be related to another county official. Cuyahoga County, like Cook County, Illinois, Wayne County, Michigan, and Maricopa County, AZ--has been going through an unwinding from the former era of corrupt politicians interested in enriching themselves and their pals. Goodbye Sheriff McFaul.
At the link you will find Plain Dealer reporter Mark Puente's story and a list of the Plain Dealer's coverage of this unbelievable "law enforcement" career. There's one further point that deserves to be made--the Plain Dealer coverage over the last 8 years or more is directly contributory to the reform of Cuyahoga County government. But this estimable investigative coverage of current scandals in county government was preceded by decades of unquestioning, ignorant, and enabling jounalist malpractice by publishers and editors invested in the status quo.