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Bill and Nadia Lockyer: A seemingly perfect life becomes a messy affair
Oakland Tribune ^ | 2/18/12 | Josh Richman and Julia Prodis Sulek, Staff Writers

Posted on 02/18/2012 11:19:18 AM PST by SmithL

Over the years, Bill and Nadia Lockyer's neighbors watched the couple walk their young son up and down their Hayward street at Christmastime, admiring the festive lights. The image of this political power couple seemed as perfect as a campaign commercial.

Everything seemed "hunky-dory" between the 70-year-old state treasurer and the 40-year-old Alameda County supervisor, said neighbor Stephen Welch. "He seemed happy. She seemed happy. I've never seen conflict or strife or anything," he said.

But this week, after stories emerged of Nadia Lockyer's substance abuse, extramarital affair and alleged beating by a former lover in a Newark motel room, she acknowledged that she had checked herself in to a drug rehabilitation center. Her husband, whose illustrious political career has spanned four decades, hunkered down in his home. The day after news of the scandal exploded, he answered the door at noon, unshaven and wearing a blue plaid bathrobe.

The seeming perfection of the couple's life in their modest split-level house high in the Hayward hills had masked addiction and deceit. Nadia Lockyer, a beautiful, ambitious woman who had hitched her star to an old political warhorse, apparently was anything but happy. In a text message sent the day after Christmas to the "other man" -- a fellow substance abuser from San Jose with whom she had her affair -- she came across as bitter and angry, all in uppercase.


A friend of Chikhani's showed the series of text messages -- sent from Nadia Lockyer's cellphone number -- to this newspaper, and the Lockyers' representatives did not dispute their veracity. The friend said that Chikhani and Nadia Lockyer met while they were in a rehab program in 2010.

An hour after sending the Dec. 26 text, Nadia Lockyer sent Chikhani another: "You stole my house key AND a radioshack giftcard," she wrote. "If you don't return both ASAP tonight (or the Iphone you got with card) by leaving them both at our front door TONIGHT -- Bill's security will have to take you into custody. Just leave it at door asap -- before its too late -- please. We're far away."

Court records show Chikhani, 35, has been in trouble with the law at least 10 times since 1997. In 2010, he was stopped in San Jose for driving erratically and ended up spending 90 days in jail for possession of methamphetamine. He was arrested again in September for possessing and being under the influence of the drug.

Nadia Lockyer told Newark police that Chikhani attacked her Feb. 3 at a Newark motel and that she suffered head and neck injuries requiring medical treatment.

Teresa Drenick, spokeswoman for the Alameda County District Attorney's Office, said Friday that the case has been transferred to the state Attorney General's Office because Nadia Lockyer once ran a program out of the DA's office.

In an interview, Chikhani accused the Lockyers of fabricating the allegations but would not elaborate.

Tom Dresslar, Bill Lockyer's spokesman, would address only the text message in which Nadia Lockyer threatened to send "Bill's security" after Chikhani.

"Lockyer's security detail would never be used for that purpose, but it's understandable why she would say that," Dresslar said. "Obviously she was afraid of Chikhani and what he might do to her and her family."

Ruben Briones, Nadia Lockyer's interim chief of staff, refused to say whether she had ever been in rehabilitation before, or what drugs she has abused.

Will Nadia Lockyer be able to survive politically?

Maybe, said Republican political consultant Dan Schnur, who in 2003 had called the Lockyers' relationship "a match made in political heaven." He added that "it will be the first wedding registry in California history with contribution limits."

This week, Schnur, who now directs the University of Southern California's Unruh Institute of Politics, was less glib. "It's worth assuming that both of them are paying a lot more attention to her physical and mental well-being than any future political considerations," he said. "But if she gets the help she needs in rehabilitation and comes out a better person for it, voters can be remarkably forgiving of personal transgressions.

"Everybody falls down. The question is how you get back up again."

By the time Bill Lockyer met Nadia Maria Davis about a decade ago, he was a Democratic political giant serving as California's attorney general after 25 years in the Legislature. Twice married earlier in life, he'd long been a bachelor and had weathered accusations of inappropriate statements to women in the 1980s.

Her father had been a renowned immigrant-rights lawyer, and she had cut her political teeth in Orange County by working on campaigns and winning a four-year term on the Santa Ana Unified School District board. When they met, she was four years younger than his daughter from one of his previous marriages.

A 1999 car accident had left her with 22 broken bones and a punctured lung. Welch, the Lockyers' neighbor, said Bill Lockyer at some point had "mentioned her car accident and how badly her middle had crushed and she wasn't supposed to be able to have children."

But two months after they wed in April 2003, their son was born. Nadia Lockyer had already opened a committee for a possible Assembly bid, and her husband was exploring a 2006 run for governor. But instead, they threw themselves into parenting.

The power couple's endorsements and fundraising support was sought by Democrats near and far. And by the time she sought election to the board of supervisors in November 2010, her husband -- among the state's most prolific Democratic fundraisers -- had transferred about $1.5 million from his campaign committee to hers, allowing her to swamp her rivals in a blizzard of direct mail and advertising.

One of those competitors was former state Sen. Liz Figueroa, D-Sunol, who for a time in the 1990s had dated Bill Lockyer. They often went to the movies, Figueroa said. "We were mostly friends," she said. "He had an incredible sense of humor."

Yet Figueroa wasn't laughing when the Lockyers accused her during the 2010 campaign of misleading voters into thinking she lived in the county.

"He's not the same person," she said this week. "A lot of us have noticed."

When they dated, Figueroa said, he was filled with political ambition "and going to run for governor. You don't hear that anymore."

Figueroa said "there was always something odd" about how Nadia Lockyer campaigned that year. "She always seemed she needed people around her, needed to be coaxed, either Bill or a staffer. She always had to be staffed."

But Figueroa never suspected a substance-abuse problem.

Former Alameda County Sheriff Charles Plummer has known Bill Lockyer for decades and lives near the Lockyers in Hayward. Plummer said he's not worried about his neighbors' political futures. And he praised them for coming clean so quickly.

"Too often politicians try to hide it or blame something else," Plummer said. "It's just awful they have to go through this. It's just a tragic thing. I feel sorry for them."

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; Government; US: California
KEYWORDS: alameda; billlockyer; cultureofcorruption; lockyer; lockyerscandals; nadialockyer; rats; stephenchikhani; yourtaxdollarsatwork

1 posted on 02/18/2012 11:19:27 AM PST by SmithL
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To: SmithL
There is none that resembles their public face, no not one.

2 posted on 02/18/2012 11:22:50 AM PST by I see my hands (The old sod ne'er shall be forgot.)
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To: Krankor

Yeah, what you said.

3 posted on 02/18/2012 11:23:23 AM PST by SmithL (If you reward certain behavior, don't be surprised when you see more of that behavior)
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To: SmithL

How much is this human trash going to cost the taxpayer?

4 posted on 02/18/2012 11:24:08 AM PST by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: SmithL

5 posted on 02/18/2012 11:25:11 AM PST by blam
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To: All

Notice how the word “Democrat” doesn’t appear in that story until the fourteenth graph.

6 posted on 02/18/2012 11:28:23 AM PST by SamKeck
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To: SmithL

Wellll, there goes a shot at the La Raza Mixed family of the year award and a run at the gUb’ship.

7 posted on 02/18/2012 11:32:15 AM PST by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi ... Godspeed .. Monthly Donor Onboard .. Obama: Epic Fail or Bust!!!)
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To: SmithL

A good looking woman who married a man 30 years older than herself, things were fine until the Erectile Dysfunction, and the energy which slowly evaporates with age, kicked in.

She sought what she was missing, got tied up with a druggie and the rest is history.

A wamn who marries a man 30 years older than her has to realise that she will probably have to bury this man, that his sex drive will fade and that she may have to se him through his final illness. Some women ;love their husbands and can survive it,other seek the pleasrues of the flesh they are missing out on.

8 posted on 02/18/2012 11:33:54 AM PST by Venturer
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To: SmithL

O.o Well isn’t that special...

I don’t even see this as a democrat thing. Typical baggage of all too many powerful, “important” people who in their quest to “win” lose their soul.

9 posted on 02/18/2012 11:39:05 AM PST by nerdwithagun (I'd rather go gun to gun then knife to knife.)
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To: Venturer

I don’t know but, somehow, ghetto rats and gangstas came to mind!

10 posted on 02/18/2012 11:41:38 AM PST by old school
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To: SmithL

I think 20 paragraphs before getting to party affiliation. This may be a new record. Of course, when they speculated whether he can survive this politically, that was a flashing neon sign saying: NOT A REPUBLICAN.

They say that there are three things in the human world that have no conscience: a sociopath, a drug addict, and a [male tumescence]. I think all three are represented in the points of our little love triangle here.

11 posted on 02/18/2012 11:42:24 AM PST by denydenydeny (The more a system is all about equality in theory the more it's an aristocracy in practice.)
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To: SmithL

Now I know why he was such a gun grabber.

12 posted on 02/18/2012 11:49:38 AM PST by Darren McCarty (Rick Santorum in the primary)
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To: denydenydeny

I love the comments after the article- the talking points:

“people (democrats) should be left alone!!!”

Yes, by all means, let’s leave them alone to feed at the public trough until they either croak in a bathtub or die of erectile dysfunction all the time billing the taxpayer for whatever ails them.

Curious: What does the State Treasurer need a security team for?

Who pays for a former school official and a current assembly broad to be “staffed”

13 posted on 02/18/2012 11:55:55 AM PST by atc23 (The Confederacy was the single greatest conservative resistance to federal authority ever.)
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To: SmithL

” ‘You stole my house key AND a radioshack giftcard,’ she wrote.”

That was his big mistake. NEVER come between a lady and her Radio Shack gift card.

14 posted on 02/18/2012 12:41:23 PM PST by mrs. a (It's a short life but a merry one...)
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To: blam

Nice DNC couple, was that pic before or after she got beat up?

15 posted on 02/18/2012 1:44:05 PM PST by bray (More Batting Practice for the Bambino)
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To: SmithL

144 paragraphs to find out he’s a DEMOCRAT!!! I actually thought he might be a Pubbie, but he;s a DEMOCRAT!!

16 posted on 02/18/2012 3:35:43 PM PST by Ann Archy ( ABORTION...the HUMAN Sacrifice to the god of Convenience.)
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To: blam

He’s 70? Is that an old photo? He doesn’t look nearly that old.

17 posted on 02/18/2012 8:25:41 PM PST by jocon307
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To: SmithL

We’ll elect anything in Cali, just as long as it has a D after its name. Can’t blame her for cheating on Lockyer though. If you had to have sex with Lockyer, you’d become a drug addict too.

18 posted on 02/27/2012 12:27:34 PM PST by stop_fascism (If a guy lies about his first name, what won't he lie about?)
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To: SmithL
"She always had to be staffed."

And you can see it on video.

19 posted on 02/27/2012 12:30:51 PM PST by stop_fascism (If a guy lies about his first name, what won't he lie about?)
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