Ethics? We don't need no stinkin' ethics on Lowest Greenville...

It goes without saying that most of the bar owners on Lowest Greenville could not spell the word ETHICS even if you spotted them the first five letters.

But when a bar owner decides he does not want BD standing down the street from his business anymore, what can he do?

Tell the DPD officers he is tired of BD's harassment - check!

Tell the DPD officers he has a restraining order on BD's butt, keeping him 500 feet from his doors - check!

Claim you have the TRO papers "in your office" - check!

Tell the DPD officers you are a City Official and demand they do his bidding.


BD's real persona has filed a complaint against Alex Salinas, the owner of gangbanger bars IberoULC and 180 Degrees, for violating the City's Ethics Code on Lowest Greenville Avenue on August 1, 2009. Salinas is an Alternate Member of the City's Board of Adjustment, previously appointed by former City Council Member Dr. Elba Garcia and held over by recently-elected Council Member Delia Jasso.

Salinas opened Ibero Ultra Latin Cuisine last year, and for about six months it operated as a restaurant to mixed reviews. [Fair disclosure - BD created and maintained the restaurant version of the Ibero website, but turned all the files over to Salinas earlier this year] But he caught the Lower Greenville Fever and turned it into a bar about six months ago. In mid-June, the DPD Weekend Report noted unusual after-hours activity at this location...[summarized and edited for grammar and punctuation only]

Ibero had patrons inside its establishment well after 2:00 am. The DPD sergeant for Greenville for Friday made several attempts to get inside the bar, but the employees refused to open the door. Officers could see several people still inside the location drinking. Officers saw employees letting people leave through the back door. The bartender finally came outside and became confrontational with the sergeant. A citizen [not BD]stated to the sergeant Ibero waits for DPD officers to leave the Lower Greenville Command Post [by Taco Cabana], then lets patrons back inside after 2:00 am. A report was generated on a case number and TABC will be contacted regarding the concerns.

Salinas told BD the real story was simpler - The recently replaced window (broken when a prisoner doing the perp walk past the restaurant became aggressive to the officers) was not installed properly and caused the front door lock to jam up.

The ethics complaint centers on City Code Section 12A-4, Unfair Advancement of Private Interests

(a) General rule. A city official or employee may not use his or her official position to unfairly advance or impede personal interests by granting or securing, or by attempting to grant or secure, for any person (including himself or herself) any form of special consideration, treatment, exemption, or advantage

During the incident, Salinas told the officers he had a Restraining Order on BD, requiring him to stay 500 feet away from his business (Ibero). BD told the officers he had not been served with any documents or been to court, so the officers told Salinas to show them the documents.

Salinas said the papers were in his office. Then he said in a very loud voice he was a City Official and was tired of BD harassing him, so they needed to get him off the corner. He never identified the office he held by title. He made the City Official claim two more times before BD stopped laughing and turned the digital video camera on.

Alex was now hiding behind the DPD officer, who refused to be part of the dance of the swans. After being told that unless he had the documents he claimed existed, he needed to contact a County Constable in order to file a TRO, and while he was at it, to get back to his bar. He ignored that order twice before finally leaving the corner, but not without telling BD he did not know who he was messing with.

BD knows exactly whom we are messing with, because we have the video here...

According to the complaint,

  • By making repeated statements to the Dallas Police Department officer(s) that he was a city official (but failing to mention the exact office), Mr. Salinas attempted to use his official position to unfairly advance his personal interests for special consideration by the police officers, by trying to force [BD's] removal from the public right of way near his bar.

  • Mr. Salinas provided false information to the officers when he stated there was a restraining order which in fact does not exist.

  • Mr. Salinas ignored repeated instructions by the police officers to return to the bar.

  • Mr. Salinas attempted to physically prevent videotaping activity on the public right of way, resulting in a warning from the police officer.

The original complaint was filed on the Monday after the incident. But BD used a non-conforming form and re-filed the complaint using the City's form on Friday morning. A courtesy copy was sent to Council Member Jasso's office, along with a copy of the video.

The Ethics Advisory Commission will meet within 21 days to conduct a preliminary review of the complaint and video, but not take any testimony on the issue. After that review, they will decide to hold a full evidentiary hearing or dismiss the case altogether. The entire process could take nearly two months. If the EAC finds a violation occurred, they could impose a variety of punishments ranging from written reprimand to asking his council member to remove him from office.

By Avi S. Adelman under Public safety , Legal issues