Thwarted Placentia Candidate Appeals Order

Times Staff Writer

Gary R. Arnold, who is claiming in a lawsuit against the City of Placentia that he was illegally prevented from running for city treasurer, has filed an appeal to try to prevent the city from taking his deposition, attorneys said Tuesday.

Last week, an Orange County Superior Court judge ordered Arnold to give his deposition and produce documents, such as electricity bills, to prove his place of residence. Arnold this week filed documents asking the 4th District State Court of Appeal to review that decision.

Last month, the city told Arnold that he could not run for city treasurer because he had listed an address in a non-residential zone as his home. City Atty. John Harper has said he wants to take Arnold's deposition, primarily to find out where he lives. Only Placentia residents, according to the city charter, can run for the city treasurer.

Called Harassment

But Arnold does not want to answer questions regarding his residency because prospective candidates "should not be subjected to a deposition," his attorney, William Yacobozzi Jr., said.

"They are harassing him," Yacobozzi said, adding that the city's actions may discourage others who wish to run for public office. "This is exposing anybody who wants to run for public office to that type of treatment."

Arnold lives at 242 S. Bradford Ave., which he listed in candidacy papers filed with the city clerk, Yacobozzi said.

Harper said he does not dispute that "Mr. Arnold, through the years, has occasionally spent the night there. Every once in a while, I'm hard pressed to spend the night in my office. But I don't call that my residence, or my domicile."

Arnold has been a vocal critic of Placentia's City Council and administration and heads a group called Placentia Watch, whose address is the same as the one he listed as his residence in the candidacy papers.

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