Raffle issue stays alive in Tulare County sheriff race

The Fresno BeeFebruary 28, 2014 

The debate continues about an allegedly illegal fundraising raffle held Feb. 21 by Tulare County Acting Sheriff Mike Boudreaux's election campaign.

Dave Whaley, the retired undersheriff opposing Boudreaux in the June election, last week said holding a raffle to raise money for a campaign is a misdemeanor.

Boudreaux responded that the campaign looked at the issue months ago and determined the raffle is legal because anyone can get a free ticket. His lawyer called it a giveaway, not a raffle.

Friday, the Tulare County District Attorney's office issued a statement under the name of Assistant District Attorney Anthony Fultz that no local law enforcement agency has investigated the raffle or submitted a case to the DA for review.

"We have forwarded all information in our possession to the Office of the Attorney General" and to the Fair Political Practices Commission, the statement said.

Whaley questioned why the District Attorney's Office didn't assign one of its own investigators to look at the raffle issue.

Fultz said he isn't commenting beyond the statement.

Meanwhile, Boudreaux's campaign adviser Tim Orman of Fresno said "nothing has changed. We've done everything right."

Friday, attorney John Sarsfield of Visalia said he sent a letter to the sheriff's department demanding an internal affairs investigation into the raffle on behalf of an unnamed deputy sheriff.

Sarsfield said the Attorney General's Office in 1999 issued an opinion in a similar case that found raffles aren't legal, even if tickets are free.

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