Political trouble is brewing again for a top cop on the Central Coast as his son is arrested and awaits charges. Monterey County Sheriff Scott Miller's son, Jacob Miller was taken into custody earlier this week at his apartment which is attached to the sheriff's home, in Pacific Grove.
Jacob Miller has been in trouble with the law before. In 2012, he pleaded no contest to having meth and instead of jail time, he went to rehab. But in March of 2012, while he was signing up for home confinement, he failed a drug test with the probation department. He was then taken to jail.
This time California State Parks charged Jacob Miller with two counts of residential burglary for stolen electronics from the Asilomar Conference Center. Monterey Police also charged Miller with possession of stolen property, allegedly taken from a home. Pacific Grove Police charged him with possession of drugs and weapons.
Now Sheriff Miller is faced with carefully handling the way he responds to his son's most recent run in with the law. We sat down with our political expert to see what all of this could mean for sheriff miller's political career down the line. Sheriff Miller’s position goes back to the voters in June.
"As long as they handle it by the rules and openly, the public and voters are usually pretty understanding," said Central Coast News political analyst Dr. David Anderson.
Anderson said there's no doubt about it, Sheriff Miller is dealing with yet again a difficult situation with his son's track record. In an election year, Anderson said Miller may start to hear more comments like this.
"I think as a law enforcement professional in the community and as the top cop of the community, he bears a greater deal of responsibility. If you don't know that there's being a crime committed in you own house, how do you plan on solving or fighting crime in a community of 450,000 people?" said political activist Jeffrey Woods.
Woods said he keeps track of local politicians like Sheriff Miller. However, Sheriff Miller said Woods is more of nuisance and won't respond to his claims. Sheriff Miller is not the first to face harsh criticism.
Last year, Salinas councilwoman Gloria De La Rosa addressed criminal activity with her two sons. One was arrested for assaulting a police officer and the other-arrested for trying to sell a gun on Facebook. In 2008, the Salinas Californian reported former Salinas mayor and assemblywoman Anna Caballero's son was arrested for an armed robbery in Salinas.
"Its a negative for the politician. It can also be a negative for their opponents if the opponents appear to be unfairly taking advantage of it," Anderson said.
But there is an upside. Anderson said voters are more forgiving when it's a family member as opposed to a staff member.
"Politician hired and can fire them, it does reflect in some ways on the politician. But if it's a family member, people understand you don't hire your family, you don't fire your family," Anderson said.
Sheriff Miller said at this point he's not going to speak about his son's charges in an on-camera interview. He also hasn't given us a definitive answer on whether he plans to run for re-election.