Election 2012

Sex Scandals Ravage San Fernando City Council: Brenda Esqueda and Maribel De La Torre Poised to Lose Seats if Landslide Holds

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Tue, Nov 6, 2012 at 10:30 PM
  • Illustration by Patrick Faricy

See also: San Fernando: America's Sexiest, Most Scandal-Ridden City Government

The citizens of San Fernando have taken their disapproval from San Fernando City Council chambers to the voting booth--and they appear poised to unseat both Mayor Brenda Esqueda and Councilmember Maribel De La Torre by massive margins.

De La Torre gained notoriety a year ago when Mario Hernandez, then-mayor of San Fernando, publicly announced that he was carrying on an extramarital affair with his fellow council member.

Not long after Hernandez's admission came allegations that Esqueda was having an extramarital affair as well--hers was allegedly with San Fernando police sergeant Alvaro Castellon. Those accusations came in addition to infighting between the council and police department, and mismanagement of city finances.

All three members of the city council faced the wrath of San Fernandans for their admitted and alleged indiscretions at public meetings before and after a campaign was mounted to recall the trio.

Hernandez resigned from the council earlier this year, before he could face recall and after he and De La Torre were involved in a domestic dispute that resulted in dueling restraining orders mandating the couple keep 100 yards distance between them.

Here's what the returns look like so far:

click to enlarge Screen_shot_2012_11_06_at_10.11.23_PM.png

click to enlarge Screen_shot_2012_11_06_at_10.11.48_PM.png

Jesse Avila leads Victoria Mojica in the race to replace Esqueda on the council.

The battle for De La Torre's seat appears too close to call, with Joel Fajardo and Louis Lopez neck and neck, followed by Danitza Pantoja, and a Renato Lira in a distant fourth place.

Early returns suggest Hernandez's seat will go to Robert C. Gonzales. So far Gonzales has more than double the votes of his two opponents, G. Berriozabal and Bennie Najar, Jr.--combined.

Check back for updates.

[@tessaestuart / tstuart@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

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