Manuel “Manny” Guaderrama set a still-standing record in the 2-mile run at Ramona High School in the late 1970s, but he’s apparently having trouble outrunning accusations that he shielded his son from jail.
According to U-T San Diego and other news reports, Guaderrama—a captain with the San Diego Police Department—is accused of keeping his son, Alex, out of lockup in August.
The Associated Press reported that “some San Diego police employees are questioning the treatment of [Alex Guaderrama] who was not taken to jail after allegedly groping two women, punching another in the face and drunkenly smashing a car window in Pacific Beach.”
Alex Guaderrama was treated for cuts, put in the front seat of a police cruiser unhandcuffed and shuttled to a parking lot in La Mesa, where his mother picked him up, U-T San Diego reported Saturday.
“This kind of thing happens,” police spokeswoman Lt. Andra Brown was quoted as saying. “It doesn’t just happen in Pacific Beach and it doesn’t just happen to 23-year-old sons of police captains. Many times a month we take the exact course of action.”
Neither father nor son was available for comment, police told U-T San Diego, but a month ago Manuel took part in a Patch interview and was asked about his philosophy in terms of transparency and communication with the public.
“I guess that depends a lot on what you mean by transparency,” he said. “Working in law enforcement, there are things we can’t share right away because of the nature of what we do—if it’s an investigation that requires us to not share information because it could compromise that investigation. But we’re real open here. Whatever we can share, we’re willing to share.”
Guaderrama also told freelance writer Annie Lane in the Patch Q&A:
I’m a hands-on manager. I like to be kept informed and I really believe it’s important to lead by example here. I try to do that all the time. I don’t ask people to work harder than I do.
An editorial in U-T San Diego posted Monday afternoon alleged a pattern of preferential treatment by police.
“And this incident comes in the wake of a U-T Watchdog report earlier this month about officers negotiating directly with defense attorneys to have traffic tickets reduced or dismissed—a practice that could clearly lead to abuse, which is why the department put a quick end to it after publication of the story,” the editorial said.
“There is nothing that threatens the credibility of a police department more than these kinds of incidents. Chief Bill Lansdowne must seek independent review and report the results publicly.”
In the Patch interview posted Aug. 21, the same day as the incident involving Alex, Guaderrama said his middle of three sons was a waiter at the Brigantine Restaurant near La Mesa.
In 1977, Manny Guaderrama ran two miles in a Ramona High record 9 minutes, 19.7 seconds. In the 1990s, Manny Guaderrama was chairman of the California Board of Prison Terms, the state parole board, and heard the cases of Charles Manson and others.
In the Patch interview, Guaderrama was asked if he had a secret talent.
He replied: “I don’t think I have a secret talent. I think if I have a talent, everybody knows about it.”