There’s a banner hanging from Leslie Moore’s quaint one-story home that reads: “Chico Police are a VIOLENT Terrorist Gang.” We stopped by to ask her about it. Moore charges that her ex-husband, a Chico police officer, regularly abused her and once strangled and beat her. (It’s a charge he denies.) The officers who responded to her home said her domestic problems were none of their business, and that she had to “deal with it,” she insists. Moore states that she was threatened and intimidated by the Chico Police Department and the Butte County District Attorney’s Office. She believes the policy for police officers who commit domestic violence is in desperate need of change, and she wants to make clear her battle is not about just the abuse, but also the abuse of power.
You believe there is impunity within the highest levels of local government?
Yes, I do. [District Attorney Mike] Ramsey is a coward and a bully. He used my ex-husband to cover up for some cops. Sure, they sometimes make an example of one officer, but they are just used as sacrificial lambs in order to maintain an image of a professional police force.
What do you hope to achieve with this banner?
I just want to make the community aware of what is behind the blue wall of our local government. This is not only my situation, but it’s the community’s situation as well. You either stand with it, or against it.
How have your neighbors responded to the banner?
I have had little response from my neighbors, but I am surprised that I have not been arrested. I have gone down to the station and demanded to be arrested for making a false accusation against the police, but they won’t arrest me because I’ll finally have a chance to speak.
Have you ever been called “crazy”?
Yes, and that’s what they rely on. I have had some emotional issues as a result of what is happening to me, but I have no mental issues. When something like this happens to you, you react emotionally, and they say, “See, she is crazy.”
Are others going through the same situation?
Locally, I think there are a lot of women who are in the same situation. There is little to no help for those married to officers who commit domestic violence. Because when you get involved, they retaliate.