I returned from vacation to find an anonymous letter in the mail, an intimidation effort, warning me to “distance” myself from my friend, Donna Ruthe and her attorney, Dennis Prince.
I met Ruthe in 2008, when I interviewed her about Jeff Guinn, the son of former Governor Kenny Guinn. I was doing a story on how Guinn, while his father was in office, used the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department to do his bidding, including the Internal Affairs Detective assigned to investigate the mess.
Guinn has guts. He later alleged in court documents that I was for sale, claiming I received free home remodeling and more in exchange for producing stories about him. (Note: I received nothing and needed no inducement to report on Guinn’s underhanded tactics in legal fights, nor his hard money lending company, Aspen Financial, which eventually crumbled under the weight of serially refinanced loans and Guinn’s own defaults.)
Did I mention Jeff’s mother, former First Lady Dema Guinn is not a fan? I had been at PBS for two weeks in March 2015 when Mrs. Guinn, who was joining the station’s Board of Directors, told my new boss that I am “dishonest.” You couldn’t ask for a broader indictment! Needless to say, the wonderful treatment I’d received at PBS the first two weeks rapidly faded. I quit a month later after the Reno PBS general manager, a man I’d never met, screamed at me over the phone for, well, doing my job.
With nothing else to do, I finished the book I had been compiling for years on Jeff Guinn, on being hauled before the Nevada Supreme Court to prove a negative…. and whatever else I came upon… and that’s when the story really got interesting.
In June of 2015 the book was complete, or so I thought.
A year ago I began doing some investigative work for Dennis Prince, the attorney taking on Jeff Guinn for Donna Ruthe. I wandered down a path that led to revelations not only about Guinn, but more importantly to me, his famous father, who tragically fell from his roof in 2010 and died. While that line of discovery was not of particular importance to Prince’s case, it was essential to my book. I added the information along with a disclosure of how I discovered it.
Donna Ruthe’s fraud case against Jeff Guinn and Aspen Financial begins in late September in federal bankruptcy court. I intend to include the outcome and release my book.
I wonder who is encouraging me to “distance” myself from Ruthe and Prince and all those legal documents on which the book is largely based?
My former managing editor at KLAS, the late, great Ned Day, always reminded me to follow the money. In this case, I think Ned would agree – follow the motive.