Orange County, Ca., Sheriff Michael Carona’s announcement yesterday that he was quitting his post to fight public corruption charges left the state’s second-largest sheriff’s department in upheaval, reports the Los Angeles Times. He appointed as interim sheriff one of his biggest loyalists, assistant sheriff Jack Anderson, who also is an official of the Orange County Republican Party.
County Supervisor John Moorlach questioned whether the appointment was valid. Carona said he resigned so he could concentrate on defending himself and continue receiving free legal advice from one of the nation’s top law firms. The decision ended a once-promising political career. Carona, a second-generation American and the son of a car mechanic, rose to national prominence as the leader of California’s second-largest sheriff’s department. Carona has worked with three governors and two presidents and has appeared as a guest on CNN’s “Larry King Live.” Several years ago, he considered running for statewide office, then perhaps a seat in Washington.