Solano County

Appeals court: Challenger can’t run for sheriff

By From page A3 | March 28, 2014

FAIRFIELD — Joel “Tom” Toler has been thwarted again in his effort to get his name on the upcoming election ballot for the Solano County sheriff’s job.

The Court of Appeal in San Francisco on Thursday afternoon rejected Toler’s effort to reverse a local judge’s ruling a few days ago, deeming Toler did not have the mandated background experience to qualify as a candidate for the Solano County sheriff-coroner position.

The tenacious Fairfield bail bondsman has one play left and he said Thursday night he will make that one last legal effort Friday morning.

Toler and his attorney are headed to the California Supreme Court asking them to compel the Solano County registrar of voters to put Toler on the ballot for the June 3 primary election.

It has been three weeks since the registrar of voters told Toler he did not have law enforcement experience required by state law. Toler knows those laws and he believes his brief stint earlier this year as a cop in a small New Mexico town meets the requirements of the law. On March 7 Toler was told by the registrar of voters that his recent police work did not qualify him for the ballot because it was done out of California.

Toler was the only person to try to challenge the incumbent, Thomas Ferrara.

Judge Scott L. Kays agreed with the registrar on Tuesday and Toler challenged the ruling the next day.

Reach Jess Sullivan at 427-6919 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jsullivandr.

Jess Sullivan

Jess has covered the criminal justice system in Solano County for several years. He was an embedded reporter in Iraq in 2003.

Discussion | 23 comments

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  • Rich GiddensMarch 27, 2014 - 8:55 pm

    This is just more prima facie evidence that California's politicians, judges and government executive branch weenies all in collusion---against ordinary citizens. There is no separation of powers and the courts are rigged. Mr. Toler should close shop and take his business, family and employees to another State and Community that doesn't rewrite the rules as they see fit.

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  • Bill of RightsMarch 28, 2014 - 1:53 pm

    I vote hat Giddens goes with Toler. Big bag if wind!

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  • The ChiefMarch 28, 2014 - 6:06 am

    The real loser here is not Tom Toler; the real loser is the citizenry of Solano County, who will continue to have a Sheriff for whom they never voted. A Sheriff by fiat. Folks, you are complicit in your own marginalization, so long as you remain apathetic.

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  • Jose MadreMarch 28, 2014 - 6:33 am

    No "Chief", the loser is Toler.

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  • S KMarch 28, 2014 - 7:01 am

    Googling, I just went through page after page after page, looking for, "Requirements on running for Sheriff In Calif," and can not find any specific ones. Someone in yesterdays posts said that it does not SPECIFICALLY say that the time spent in law enforcement has to be in Calif. Well I don't know since I can not find the requirements. So I still say IMO he is qualified, being a bail bondsman, and having probably having had to hunt down perps that skipped bail, bounty hunting, etc. I still plan to WRITE HIM IN.

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  • Jose MadreMarch 28, 2014 - 7:17 am

    ^^^A fool and his vote are soon parted.^^^

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  • S KMarch 28, 2014 - 7:20 am

    Yup, maybe, look at ALL THE FOOLS we already have in office, from the TOP DOWN (Whom I voted for TWICE), to the very bottom.

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  • MDSMarch 28, 2014 - 8:19 am

    The text of the law has been on here many times in these various articles. Now even some new info has come out that Toler didn't even have a enough time as a cop to even start to qualify. I don't know if it's true or not, but according to one source on here Toler was only a reserve officer in Winters and then was only a regular cop in Vacaville for less than 18 months. If that is true, then the out of state experience is not relevant as he doesn't have enough time as a cop at all to even qualify.

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  • Bill of RightsMarch 28, 2014 - 7:47 am

    I just don't get it! Arguments about someone who can't even make minimum qualifications to run for the Office of the Sheriff and the public is the loser in this election? Folks, I have said it before and I'll say it again. Not a fan of the current Sheriff. But don't know much about him either. But to consider a shady bail bondsman, who has never been a real police officer scares me and should scare you! Think about it, why is it that Toler has never been hired as a police officer? Maybe questions of Morality and Ethics? Questionable background history? Education? These are disqualifiers with every law enforcement agency in the nation! Uhhh, let me say every reputable agency in the nation. Move on Toler. Go be a Private Investigator for a slime bag Defense Attorney somewhere. That is another place you can find has been/ burnout/ and wannabe cops!

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  • CatdogMarch 28, 2014 - 7:57 am

    Why dont you take a walk to the the registrar. Take look at his post certified records. Look close where it list the 4 departments the guy worked for. It has nothing to do with private investigator or bail. Unless you think he paid post to create these records. You still have that tree and rope I see.

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  • MDSMarch 28, 2014 - 8:24 am

    Catdog, since you've seen the records can you give us the names of the agencies, the dates of employment, and his actual peace officer classification? According to one person on here, he was a reserve in Winters and was with Vacaville PD less than 18 months. Reserve time clearly doesn't count if that's what he's using to get to the required five years experience. And his two weeks in New Mexico doesn't add much to it.

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  • CD BrooksMarch 28, 2014 - 8:08 am

    Many of you let your passion override your good sense. Surely you saw this coming? If Mr. Toler is ever found to have been qualified, there will be repercussions that will ultimately cost him this election and we citizens in our pocketbooks. If not, then he's where he belongs. In light of new conversations here I am going to change my vote, I will write in Mr.Leonard R Alexandre for Sheriff.

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  • The MisterMarch 28, 2014 - 8:42 am

    We're praying for you, Tom Toler! And if you are successful, please consider exercising your rights under US Code 42, section 1983, and sue each and every government employee individually and make them personally pay for using their position of authority to deny you your civil rights. It's not enough to vote out corruption or to let corruption quietly retire, corruption ideally should be behind bars but at a minimum should be flat-busted broke. Tom, please send this message to the corruption in Solano County... corruption doesn't pay!

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  • MDSMarch 28, 2014 - 8:56 am

    Yes Toler should sue! I hope he has a big wallet when he gets order to pay the Counties court cost and when he gets sued back. One superior court judge and an appeals court has already ruled in favor of the County. Toler would have a great lawsuit except for the fact that the law doesn't support him and neither do the courts! But other than that, it's a good case...(not).

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  • SalMarch 28, 2014 - 9:04 am

    Mister, you are like a broken record, why dont u ask Pam Bertani to run for this position as well, since no one else meets your high standards except her?

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  • The MisterMarch 28, 2014 - 9:51 am

    Sal, I am NO fan of Pam. I am also NO fan of Diamond Jim. I'd sooner vote for you before voting for either of those two.

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  • SteveMarch 28, 2014 - 12:51 pm

    Yes we know, the Sheriff, Registrar of Voters, Solano County Judges, the Court of Appeals, the Board of Supervisors, the City Councils are all corrupt. Corruption is rampant. It's everywhere. It's just the rest of us poor slobs can't see it or come to grips with it.

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  • BobMarch 28, 2014 - 8:42 am

    Come on Aren't there other "Good old boys" running in this election that you can get worked up about ? Seems to me if you want to get into politics you're half crazy anyway

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  • The looking glassMarch 28, 2014 - 9:28 am

    If you get a chance to meet Tom, you will understand why he and his attorney are at the CA Supreme Court,now. He will not give up. The issue for the galley is only one element. 1. The two weeks out of state service. That's it.You are correct about one thing, they did try to jail him and you see what heppened. They tried to get his bail license and you see what happen. He has had phone threats warning what would happen if he won.

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  • MDSMarch 28, 2014 - 12:57 pm

    And you think the two weeks experience complies with the State law? The law was written for a reason and that was to ensure that anybody off the street couldn't run for Sheriff. It was written because the legislature felt that a sheriff needed a certain level of RECENT experience. And even with that, the legislature did not set the bar too high. It really doesn't take a lot of experience to qualify. But Toler couldn't even jump over that bar even though it was a very low bar. So he goes to New Mexico and gets two weeks fake experience that doesn't even comply with New Mexico law, and you somehow think that the legislature would mean that to count when they passed this law? The Registrar of Voters got it right, the Superior Court Judge got it right, and hopefully the Supreme Court will get right, if they even let Toler through the front door. And not to mention that some of Toler's long ago Police Experience may not even Count because it was reserve time and to regular time.

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  • The looking glassMarch 28, 2014 - 9:39 am

    Why don't you people go meet him? Everybody has had a lesson in rumors, what the neighbor said and god help us, what the sheriff and some of his people have said. There was a saying I heard growing up.Hear it from the horses mouth. What do you have to lose by getting the infomation direct?

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  • A Different PerspectiveMarch 28, 2014 - 12:32 pm

    I've tried to meet him on numerous occasions. His office is never open.

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  • The looking glassMarch 28, 2014 - 4:05 pm

    7 707-207-0600 Call him, I did.

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