By Robert Haugh
This bombshell exploded on SanJoseInside.com yesterday.
Former campaign staffer Ian Crueldad says that Santa Clara Councilman Dominic Caserta walks around the campaign HQ wearing just a towel. The story doesn’t say, but we really hope the towel covers the bottom half of Caserta’s body.
In Caserta’s defense, the campaign HQ is also his house. He’s posted a lot of Facebook videos of young campaign staffers and volunteers in his living room and dining room. Since he’s behind the camera we can’t tell what he’s wearing — or not wearing.
It doesn’t really matter if it’s in Caserta’s home or a real campaign HQ. We can see why this would make normal people uncomfortable. But this story is a bombshell for a lot of other reasons.
The last paragraph may be the most significant:
“One former Caserta volunteer, who asked to withhold his name, says Crueldad brought up his concerns about the candidate months ago. The volunteer also says a female colleague told him that Caserta touched her thigh and whispered in her ear, which he says she laughed off at the time.”
Whoa. That’s a really big deal if it’s true. Caserta is a Santa Clara High School teacher and should know better. And Caserta has been out front of the Recall Aaron Persky campaign. He taped a video with recall leader Michele Dauber. Here’s what Caserta says:
“And the reason why I’m passionately endorsing this is our legal system must protect women of [sic] sexual assault and domestic violence. We cannot standby and let judges protect privileged perpetrators instead of innocent women of [sic] sexual assault and domestic violence.”
We asked Dauber about the story. She said that at this point, she sees no reason to change her endorsement of Caserta.
The story also says that Crueldad was paid really poorly. He says he got $500 a month and worked 50 hours a week. Wow. Caserta and San Jose Councilman Don Rocha were co-endorsed by Labor for County Supervisor. If Caserta is paying people a less-than-poverty wage, will that be an issue for Labor? Their website says this is one of their priorities:
“It’s also up to employers to honor the skills and productivity of the workforce by offering the quality wages and benefits area employees deserve.”
So, we asked South Bay Labor Council CEO Ben Field about Crueldad’s claim that he got $2.50 an hour. Here’s how Field responded : “If he was salaried, there is probably no wage violation.” We’ve asked him to say more since this really makes no sense for a Labor leader to say.
Another interesting thing is the suggestion that Caserta has an interesting relationship with the 49ers.
“According to Crueldad, Caserta called to cuss him out on Monday after Fly began inquiring about the letter. ‘He called me a motherxxxxer,’ Crueldad recounts, ‘and he told me … he would rip me through the media and have his consultants and the 49ers come after me.’”
Caserta relies on the 49ers for major political contributions. But it looks like he also sees them as his hitmen. This may explain why when Caserta had a choice to vote with Labor or the 49ers on an employee issue, he sided with the team.
Editor’s Note: SanJoseInside.com is a website run by Metro Silicon Valley, an organization who’s won numerous awards over the years from the California News Publishers Association.
THIS GUY,, need not be in office,, he has never had to run a business,, make payroll week after week,, he and the other council members are running the city of santa clara into backrupcy, easy to just write check out of the tax payers accounts,,, good luck moving on, get a real job, !!! DONT VOTE FOR THIS CLOWN!!! B.E.
Robert Haugh you are a LIAR. I was on the tennis team all four years that Dominic was our tennis coach. He NEVER once took his shirt off EVER. Unlike your unnamed sources, my name is Juan Moran and I was there EVERYDAY for practice.
THIS NEVER happened. Dominic was the best coach I have EVER had and a role model that has helped me immensely in my life. How could you print something this libelous without ANY proof.
THIS NEVER HAPPENED!
WOW!! What the heck!!😂😂😂😂
The above mentioned website was obviously set up by the admin of this Santa Clara News site. You have done that same childish and poorly executed cut and paste job on other people. Why do you post comments under anonymous names on your own site? You really do need professional help.
I only log in and post as myself. I have no idea who set up the site mentioned in the comments here. I’m not a fan of body shaming and don’t agree with some of the content.
I 100 percent post only as myself. I don’t need to hide under false aliases like other people. By the way, nice fake name and email.
Fake Email? Don’t try to get a job as investigative journalist, you won’t make it.
Jean(Miles?James? Mahan?) Or whoever you are 😎Robert had nothing to do with this website. Im the childish Santa Claran that posts comments under anonymous names. Did you vote? #10 is my favorite.😲lol
WOW 😂😂😂look was I just found. Creepy Caserta. I couldn’t help myself… I voted for #9 haha
FINALLY—— SOMEONE SPOKE OUT ABOUT Caserta
I was thrilled to read that the residents of Santa Clara are standing up against this narcissistic bully.
His actions on council are despicable. His comments on this column, Jacob aka Caserta, using diversionary tactics are a true testament to his lack of character. NO moral compass. SCUSD and other institutions of learning should never allow Caserta to teach our children period !
Robert, you speak the truth and inform us, for that I thank you.
Caserta grow up and own what you truly are.
Opinions are one thing, but this goes well beyond that.
I’m not a lawyer, but Crueldad seems guilty of slander if he cannot provide factual evidence.
I’d also think SJU, guilty of libel for publishing in such a headline fashion (and SC Online continues this deliberate defamation).
Something along the line, “Caserta firmly denies the allegations of a former staffer…”, would be a less complicit lead-in.
Simply skirting behind “a draft resignation letter sent anonymously to Fly and penned by… Crueldad”, even with Crueldad admitting to having written & shared that with others, is hardly sufficient.
SJI & this website owe readers a follow-up. If they cannot verify Crueldad’s claims, they should publish a retraction of some sort… in similar headline fashion.
Most of the article is worthwhile and interesting, but SanJoseInside (and you?) should be ashamed for quoting an anonymous source referencing another anonymous source: “ volunteer also says a female colleague told him that Caserta touched her thigh and whispered in her ear, which he says she laughed off at the time.” Get some names and then report. Otherwise this is just gossip. P.S. I don’t like Caserta and won’t vote for him, but I respect good journalism. This isn’t it – and the fact that you hedge by saying “if this is true,” really doesn’t make it Ok.
So let’s get this straight Bobby you don’t cover an actual story like O’Neill and Davis making derogatory statements about Patricia Mahan’s cancer in emails that are FACT, that are tangible and ACTUALLY occurred but you cover this: a disgruntled employee who wanted more money and didn’t get it, has been fired from other jobs, will not comment on a draft letter that was sent to Fly as an ENCRYPTED email, another accuser who won’t use his name and does NOT back up the towel fabrication, roughly ONE month before an election libeling the front runner for Supervisor in Caserta, and the only Santa Claran in the race, and you have THREE other people who DO go on the record using their own names denying these falsehoods and you still REGURGITATE this fake news for the Metro that publishes SEX ADS as their revenue stream. Bobby, your bias knows no bounds and your blog is SMUT.
What happened to journalistic standards, Bobby? This fake piece is nothing more than a poor reflection of a disgruntled ex-employee who wanted more money and the TRASH that is your blog. If Caserta was a disciple of the appointed Mayor you would not even report this like the true story about the reprehensible emails from her bobbleheads: O’Neill and Davis.
Caserta is independent, passionate, TWO-TIME TEACHER OF THE YEAR at Santa Clara High School who is clearly winning this race and a desperate attempt to change this inevitable trajectory. Bobby please review what good reporting is, your blog is trash.
A similar comment with much of the same phrasing was posted under a different name on the San Jose Inside article.
Thanks for contributing to the discussion, Dominic.
Caserta😂😂😂😂😂😂Add Jacob to the long list of alias names you use.
I’m pretty sure that Caserta left the above comment under the username Jacob, only because I remember him getting hung up on the fact that the letter was sent to me on Signal, an encrypted messaging app (which, by the way, most journalists I know use). He kept repeating, “So let me get this straight … you’re writing about an anonymous, encrypted letter …”
I tried to explain that while the letter was sent anonymously, it was signed by Ian and I spent several days corroborating it. And though Ian initially declined to comment, I finally talked him into elaborating on the content of the missive.
Caserta, however, seemed to think that because it was sent on an encrypted messaging service that the letter was somehow less credible. I don’t understand the logic, but he seized on that detail and repeated it in subsequent phone calls to me and my boss.
Anyway, since Caserta’s the only one I told about my receiving the letter on an encrypted app (which, again, is a platform that’s widely used by reporters), and since he’s using almost the exact language and almost the exact tone he took with me, I’ll venture to guess this is him sounding off under one of his many aliases.
Caserta threatens people. His behavior is appropriate. This is not the type of person we should have in office or in a classroom.
It’s been my opinion for quite some time that Caserta is the 49ers’ little bitch on the city council. He doesn’t give a damn about the residents of this city. Quality of living is not a term he cares to learn or promote in regard to the residents that live around the stadium. He’ll bring that same pisspoor support for residents to the county office if he’s elected.