A judge Friday dismissed a lawsuit filed by a former Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy whose reinstatement by Sheriff Alex Villanueva initiated a legal fight between some of the county’s top elected officials and who was asking a judge to give him his job back.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Mitchell L. Beckloff took the action at the request of attorney Gregory W. Smith, who represents Caren Carl Mandoyan. Mandoyan had sued Villanueva and the county Civil Service Commission in November 2019, asking that a judge direct the sheriff to begin a new probe into the domestic violence allegations against him and to eventually reinstate him.
Smith told the judge he will likely refile the case in a trial court. Beckloff had issued a tentative decision before Friday’s hearing stating that he was inclined to grant the county’s motion to dismiss the case anyway, based on his conclusion that the Civil Service Commission’s upholding of Mandoyan’s firing on appeal put an end to the case.
“There is no dispute the commission’s decision is final,” Beckloff wrote. “(Mandoyan) dismissed his challenge to the commission’s decision as well as his civil claim against the sheriff’s department for damages.”
In his suit, Mandoyan maintained he was denied due process and that new evidence was left out of the 2016 Internal Affairs investigation that could have prevented him from being fired for the domestic violence incident involving a female deputy.
Villanueva’s efforts on behalf of the former deputy outraged members of the County Board of Supervisors, who filed a petition in March 2018 seeking to have Mandoyan’s rehiring declared void. Beckloff agreed and found in favor of the county in 2020.