Edgerly's nephew pleads no contest

October 13, 2009 4:21:15 PM PDT
The nephew of former Oakland City Administrator Deborah Edgerly pleaded no contest today to a felony charge of carrying a concealed and unregistered firearm in a car.

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William Lovan was contacted by Oakland police in June 2008 as part of their investigation into the activities of the Acorn drug gang, which operates out of the Acorn housing project in West Oakland. Police describe it as the city's worst gang.

Oakland police claimed that Lovan, a 28-year-old Concord resident, was a member of the gang.

His case generated controversy when police disclosed in a report that Edgerly had gone to the scene when police stopped Lovan near a liquor store in the 1200 block of Market Street in West Oakland about 10:30 p.m. on June 7, 2008.

According to the police report, Edgerly told police officers that Lovan was her nephew and that she was on the phone with Howard Jordan, the city's assistant police chief at the time, and would be contacting the department's internal affairs division over the matter.

Lovan was arrested 10 days later when 400 officers from Oakland and 16 other law enforcement agencies arrested 54 alleged Acorn gang members as part of a three-month probe called "Operation Nutcracker."

A spokesman for Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums said at the time that Dellums was looking into allegations that Edgerly may have interfered with a police investigation, but Edgerly was never charged with a crime.

Dellums fired Edgerly on July 2, 2008.

Lovan's preliminary hearing had been scheduled to begin this morning in the courtroom of Alameda County Superior Court Judge Robert McGuiness. In return for his plea today, the district attorney's office dropped a second felony charge that alleged that Lovan was carrying an unregistered loaded weapon when he was questioned by police.

Prosecutors also dropped two gang enhancement clauses against Lovan. He will be sentenced by Judge Morris Jacobson on Dec. 1.

Prosecutor John Brouhard said Lovan's plea agreement calls for him to be placed on five years' probation and serve up to one year in the Alameda County Jail. Brohuard said it will be up to Jacobson to decide how much time Lovan serves, if any.

Lovan's attorney, Adante Pointer, said Lovan entered his plea "in an effort to spare himself and his family from an embarrassment and a spectacle," and alleged that the case against Lovan was "politically motivated."

Lovan worked for the city of Oakland as a meter repairman at the time he was charged in June 2008 but Pointer declined to say if Lovan still works for the city and city officials weren't immediately available for comment on his status with the city.

Pointer said Lovan "is currently employed and hopes to maintain his employment."

Edgerly has filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against the city, claiming that she's a victim of gender discrimination. Her suit is still pending.

According to court records, Lovan pleaded no contest on Nov. 3, 2000, to felony possession of assault weapons.

He could have faced up to three years in state prison, but in a plea bargain with the district attorney's office that was approved by Judge Gail Brewster-Bereola he was placed on three years' probation and didn't have to serve any jail time, except for three days following his arrest on Aug. 20, 2000.

Three years later, on Sept. 19, 2003, Judge Larry Goodman agreed to reduce Lovan's conviction from a felony to a misdemeanor.

Pointer said Lovan's prior conviction isn't relevant to his current case because "it was expunged" and won't count as a prior conviction for sentencing purposes.

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