Mark R. Madler
City Councilwoman Stacey Murphy apologized Tuesday for the
distraction to the city caused by her arrest last week on drug and
child endangerment charges.
In a statement read at Tuesday’s council meeting, Murphy said she
would be absent from the meetings until her Aug. 25 initial court
appearance but did intend to fulfill the job she was elected to do.
“I plan on continuing throughout my entire term,” Murphy said in
Murphy, 47, and boyfriend Scott Schaffer were arrested July 13
following an investigation by federal, state and local police
agencies into the Vineland Boyz street gang.
Schaffer is alleged to have traded handguns on at least two
occasions with members of the Vineland Boyz in exchange for cocaine,
Murphy was arrested at her home on Lima Street for suspicion of
possession of cocaine after the drug was found in her bedroom and
child endangerment for having three handguns and 900 rounds of
ammunition in her garage. The mother of three, including a
12-year-old still living at home, is free after posting $100,000 bond
How Murphy handles her appearances at the council meetings is up
to her, Mayor Jef Vander Borght said.
For most of the items the council votes on, it may not matter that
she is missing for the next month, he said.
“When you have those contentious and difficult issues that come
up, that is when we will miss having that fifth person,” Vander
Councilman Dave Golonski had no comment on Murphy’s statement but
said that the council should be able to function fine with just four
In her statement, Murphy apologized to her children for subjecting
them to the press coverage resulting from her arrest.
“To the many friends that have called to offer me their love,
support and prayers, I truly thank them,” Murphy said in the
Re-elected to her third term in February, the out-spoken Murphy
was never shy about speaking her mind on tough issues facing the city
or in voting the opposite of her council colleagues.
“We are really devastated and shocked,” said Barry Burnett, a
friend of Murphy’s. “It seems out of character for her.”
Charlie Lombardo, the campaign manager for Murphy’s first two runs
for a council seat, called Murphy a good mother and one of the most
integrity-oriented people he knows.
“The person who is accused isn’t the Stacey that I know,” Lombardo
said. “I’m very supportive and will help her out anyway I can during
But police officials paint a different picture of Murphy, who has
been recognized by the city and the Colony Theatre with the Community
Spotlight Award and by Rep. Adam Schiff as a Woman of the Year in
An affidavit from David Torres, a Los Angeles Police officer
assigned to the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Southern California
Drug Task Force, filed to obtain search warrants for Schaffer’s
Glendale home and Murphy’s Burbank home included statements from
Schaffer that he and Murphy would go to a North Hollywood bar to buy
cocaine and that the couple had used the drug together.
Schaffer also said that Murphy was aware that he had dealings with
two Vineland Boyz street gang members, Torres said in the affidavit.
Schaffer, 51, remains in federal custody on weapons and drug
He is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court on July 28.
Do you agree with Councilwoman Stacey Murphy’s decision to return
to the dais after Aug. 25? E-mail your responses to burbankleader
@latimes.com; mail them to the Burbank Leader, 111 W. Wilson Ave.,
Glendale, CA 91203. Please spell your name and include your address
and phone number for verification purposes only.