Pasadena Councilman Charged With 5 Misdemeanors in Crash

Pasadena Councilman Isaac Richard has been charged with giving police a false name and four other misdemeanors after a minor traffic accident with a bus in Downtown Los Angeles.

The controversial Richard, who was censured by his colleagues last year for threatening behavior and abusive language, was charged with two counts of giving false information to a police officer, reckless driving, throwing an object at a vehicle and driving on a suspended license, an official said.

The councilman, who declined comment Thursday, faces penalties ranging from 90 days to six months in jail, plus a $1,000 fine for each count. His arraignment was set for Oct. 18 in Los Angeles Municipal Court.

The accident occurred shortly before noon last Friday, when Richard was on his way to the Los Angeles Athletic Club for a lunch-hour basketball game.


Richard allegedly cut in front of a Metropolitan Transportation Authority bus and made an abrupt stop, said MTA Police Capt. Dennis Conte. The MTA driver hit the brakes but the bus still bumped into the back of Richard’s car, causing no injuries or damage, Conte said.

MTA police said the councilman got out of his car, spewed profanities and threw his sunglasses at the bus driver before parking his car at the nearby Athletic Club. Richard then walked back to the bus, arriving about the same time as MTA police summoned by the driver.

The officers briefly handcuffed the agitated Richard, who allegedly said his name was “Pete Faire,” Conte said. But the councilman soon gave his true name and admitted that he was driving with a suspended license, Conte said.

Richard’s license was suspended May 18 after he failed to pay a citation for speeding and driving a motorcycle without a proper license, officials said.

The Department of Motor Vehicles lifted the suspension Monday after Richard paid a $427 fine, officials said.

The Pasadena City Council has censured Richard twice in recent years for cursing and threatening city officials during council meetings. But Richard, who is African American, contends that his tirades are aimed at calling attention to problems affecting Pasadena’s black community.