Stockton Mayor Anthony Silva, a Republican, was arrested on August 4 at his Silver Lake Stockton youth camp in Amador County on charges involving contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
The 41 year old Silva was charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor, eavesdropping or recording confidential communications, providing alcohol to a minor and cruelty to a child by endangering health, according to court records.
After the City of Stockton filed for bankruptcy on June 27, 2012, Silva successfully ran for mayor in 2013 as a reformer with a supposedly sterling reputation as the CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of Stockton for 8 years and as a Board member of the Stockton Unified School District from 2004-2008.
The arrest stems from an FBI investigation that began in September 2015, when Silva’s smartphone was seized by Homeland Security at San Francisco International Airport as he got off a flight from China with a delegation of Northern California mayors after a weeklong conference.
Silva’s initial indictments involve his activities between Aug. 5 and Aug. 9, 2015 at Stockton Silver Lake Family Camp, according to the Amador County District Attorney.
One of the clips on Silva’s phone contained audio of several people, including a 16-year-old, during a strip poker game in Silva’s bedroom at the camp, according to the Amador County District Attorney. The audio recording allegedly also reveal that the participants did not want to be recorded and that Silva supplied alcohol to a number of underage counselors at the camp.
Silva’s attorney, Mark Reichel, issued a statement to NBC local affiliate KCRA:
“They have had all of this evidence for over a year. Unlimited resources have been spent on this in an effort to find something they can investigate. The timing is extremely suspicious as people will only hear 1/2 of the story before the election. He will clear his name.”
Silva has publically insisted for over 9 months that the FBI wouldn’t find anything incriminating on electronic devices:
“They’re not gonna find any espionage or anything like that on my computers or my cell phone, but by me giving into that sort of search, when I knew the search was illegal — and it’ll be proven that they have to give the stuff back anyways — I wasn’t protecting the rest of the American people.”
The Mayor was already the subject of huge local headlines on July 28 when a .40-caliber Beretta registered to Silva, but supposedly stolen from his home, was linked to the murder of 13-year-old Rayshawn Harris in February 2015, according to KCRA 3 Investigates program.
Silva failed to report the gun as stolen until March 2015, a month after Rayshawn’s death. Silva made a statement in a police report that his home had been burglarized and his .40-caliber Beretta, a 100-quart cooler, a generator, a laser printer, a camera and a game console were taken.
The gun was forensically traced to at least two other crime scenes, before it was recovered in June 2016 when police were called to break up a domestic violence incident. After the suspect, Anthony Binder, spit in the face of a woman at a home on Treetop Lane, he allegedly grabbed a gun and put it in his belt. After he went into the garage and fell asleep, the woman took gun off Binder and called the police.