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More drama unfolds in LA City Council race

February 7, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
A consultant for Los Angeles City Council incumbent Jose Huizar has been fired after targeting candidate Rudy Martinez in a controversial e-mail.

Trujillo's firing is not the only drama to unfold in the council race. Martinez, an Eagle Rock businessman, is also under scrutiny for allegedly possessing an LAPD badge of a slain officer.

Huizar's campaign consultant Michael Trujillo sent an e-mail to supporters criticizing Martinez' possession of that badge.

Martinez possessed the badge in 2004 when he was a reserve police officer. Martinez said it was loaned to him by the department so he could use it to make miniature replicas for a celebrity golf tournament.

Martinez resigned from his reserve post during the 2005 investigation, but the controversy has emerged yet again as Martinez runs against Huizar.

Trujillo's controversial e-mail read:"Well, now he is going to be the dead rat he really is? We are about to put a political bullet in between Rudy Martinez's forehead and make him pee in his pants too."

Martinez is calling the e-mail a threat that just went too far.

"These are things that should not be said and the fact that the councilman fired his campaign manager over this is quite not enough for me. I didn't receive an apology. I'm scared. I'm scared for my own life and I'm scared for my family. It's sad that politics had to get to this," Martinez said.

Trujillo apologized for his remarks.

"I made a mistake and am taking responsibility for my actions," Trujillo said in a statement. "I am sorry if my actions reflect badly on Councilmember Jose Huizar, a truly effective leader and a man of great integrity."

Parke Skelton, Huizar's lead consultant who terminated Trujillo, also apologized.

"The remarks were inappropriate, disrespectful and offensive. On behalf of the campaign, I apologize to Mr. Martinez for this breach."

As for the LAPD badge, Martinez's campaign said it is a non-issue to them and that it was resolved years ago.

Huizar's campaign was scheduled to hold a press conference at noon Monday but it was canceled late morning.