If what Dan De Vaul did was so illegal, why wasn’t he punished 10 years ago when the harassment first began?
If what he did was wrong, why did four local, well-known, dedicated attorneys put their good names and careers on the line, while representing him pro bono?
If his actions were so caustic, why did the community rally around him and fight so hard to defend him?
Why did he get invited to speak about homelessness and his program at schools, service clubs, and local organizations?
If what he did was so immoral, why did local churches come and volunteer to help him plant in the fields year after year? (One of our own supervisors even came to volunteer.) Congregation members also brought food and stuffed stockings at Christmas time; local grocery stores brought in turkey dinners every year at Thanksgiving.
If the county and judicial system care so much about the health and safety of our homeless neighbors and where they live, why have they done so little over the past 30 years to provide housing for the homeless, and instead try to break the one man who has done more than any of them combined?
Actions by the county were simple: harassment of the indigent, elder abuse, unequal protection under the law, and selective code enforcement. He was doing their job—and a good job at that—with no taxpayers’ money. He made the county look bad.
And at the end of the day, all they ever wanted was his land.