Hook Profiles Camblos

In this week’s Hook, Lisa Provence has a lengthy profile of Jim Camblos and the criticism that has been heaped upon him in the past few years. Provence talked to me for the piece, since I’ve never been shy about criticizing the Albemarle County commonwealth’s attorney, and some of my quotes are sprinkled throughout the article to create a sort of back and forth between me and Camblos.

When asked about his most serious screwup — Cambos’ refusal to so much as issue a traffic ticket to woman who killed a woman and her grandchildren while driving on on 29 — he doesn’t even attempt to defend himself, simply refusing to discuss it. On other matters, Camblos complains that his critics are “people who don’t know all the facts,” which either means a) that all local media outlets have conspired against Camblos to refuse to provide the public with “all the facts” or b) that Camblos is refusing to provide the facts. What with his refusal to, y’know, provide the facts when asked for them by Provence, this isn’t a real tough nut to crack.

Bizarrely, Camblos claims that anybody who criticizes him either doesn’t live in Albemarle or is part of “certain segment of the media.” I can’t claim to be particularly surprised: this is the same man who once brought charges against a child in part because he was born on Hitler’s birthday. Reality’s not his strong suit.

Defending him, his coworkers point out that Camblos loves puppies, rainbows, and long walks on the beach. Camblos insists that he’s all about “respect, compassion, and dignity,” which contrasts sharply with the mug he’s photographed drinking out of, emblazoned with these words: “Reduce defense spending–plead guilty.”

34 thoughts on “Hook Profiles Camblos”

  1. Vote for Denise Lunsford. She’s smart, she cares about justice for everyone, not just the few, she’s extremely personable, she doesn’t hate people with disabilities. I live in Albemarle, I am not in the media, I had the dubious pleasure of being on a taskforce with Camblos, I criticize him and my mother who has had jury duty with him as prosecutor criticizes him. I’d go the whole James Cagney routine but I think I’d be showing my age :).

  2. You can’t forget the time he refused to charge the sheriff officer who falsely accused a “black man in a white t-shirt, blue jeans, and a red hat” of shooting him which led to the harassment of God knows how many black males in the area. I’ll add to the chorus here: Vote Denise Lunsford.

  3. On November 6th, Camblos is going to find out that the “certain segment of the media” makes up well over half of this county’s voters!

  4. I believe just about everyone running with an “R” is gonna be in trouble in Albemarle Co. Camblos is banking on the “old guard” and “old money” Republicans getting him re elected and I just don’t think there are all that many left anymore. I don’t see the reduction of this patrician Virginia “gentleman” upper crust elitist influence a bad thing btw.

    I would also sure as hell like to see a reduction of the hippie left idiocy in Charlottesville and a meeting of the minds between both jurisdictions on how to approach things with common sense, throwing both the right and left wings to the wind, to fly a straight path toward reason. Forgive me…I must be smoking crack wishing for that :)

  5. I believe just about everyone running with an “R” is gonna be in trouble in Albemarle Co. Camblos is banking on the “old guard” and “old money” Republicans getting him re elected and I just don’t think there are all that many left anymore.

    I suspect that’s why we’ve seen no outward sign of collaboration or coordination between Camblos and Harding. Traditionally candidates will work together when seeking office on the same level in the same district — governor and AG, BoS and W&S supervisor, etc. Democrats have a coordinated campaign in the form of Claytor, Lunsford and Shipp, but Harding appears to be studiously avoiding such a collaboration with Camblos. Which is might smart. I think Camblos is going to serve as an anchor on Harding’s support to a degree that will correlate directly with the public’s association between the two.

    That surely explains why Camblos appears to be out on his own in this race. He’s pure poison to other Republicans’ campaigns.

  6. “I believe just about everyone running with an “R” is gonna be in trouble in Albemarle Co.”

    I agree which is why I am so confused and upset about the Democrats not running someone against Bell.

  7. The Rs did send out one coordinated mailer, around the time of the County Fair . . . what a waste of money! And it must have cost a pretty penny, too.

    Anyway the flier had Bell endorsing all the Republicans, Harding, Camblos and Dawson right there together. Plus Boyd and Wyant in the versions that went into their districts.

    But, I have certainly heard that Harding thinks Camblos is going to hurt him, and Harding is trying to stay as far away from him as he can.

    Unfortunately for Harding they all have the same friends and the same people backing them.

    Notice where Harding has all his big signs? Wendall Wood, Virginia Land Company and so on and so on. Good fun.

  8. Waldo? Agree on your reflections of the Republican predicament but no defense from you of the insanity we call a City Council? I guess that’s because their can be no defense of them from a “sensible” liberal :)

  9. no defense from you of the insanity we call a City Council?

    You haven’t said anything about them with which I could agree or disagree, defend or fail to defend.

  10. I would like to say something about the wreck on 29 that killed my wife and 2 grandaughters. The “mutant bee” was in fact a bug about the size of a firefly. I have a picture of it of it. I got the picture from the police. Miss Roth skidded 503’9″ before she hit Lois in the rear, pushed her car around, and skidded another 192′ before she stopped her car. The book you get from the DMV to study to get your drivers license says at 55 mph you can stop in 211′. She skidded over 3 times that far, and still no charges were placed against her. I don’t believe Camblos is that stupid, so he must have another reason for not pressing any charges.

    Edward L. Deane

  11. I think that locally and nationally, with the Duke case, we have been receiving an education on the importance of reining in incompetent, power hungry prosecutors who have agendas far from truth and justice. In Albemarle County, we have a chance to vote for real change and give Mr.Camblos the opportunity to have more time with his family. Get out and vote everybody!

  12. I hope everyone running with an I (for Incumbent)in Albemarle County is going to be in trouble come November. They’ve sure made a mess of things around here!

  13. The fact that Mr Camblos “refuses to discuss that case or his decision not to prosecute Roth” as per the HOOK speaks volumes. It sounds as though he either believes he does not have to explain his actions or he is hiding something.

  14. Does anyone here know anybody in Albemarle County who supports Jim Camblos and is not either related to him or a close friend of his? Because I’ve not talked to anyone, Republican or Democrat, in the last few years about Jim Camblos who didn’t have something nasty to say.

  15. So who is David Heilberg anyway? Is he a ENTOMOLOGIST? As the mother on Cheyanne, daughter of Lois & Aunt of Renae – I am appalled at Mr. Heilberg’s comments. He indicated that he spoke with the officer investigating the case and that he saw the “mutant bee” – WHAT? They must have a different picture than the one I have. I also wonder which officer he spoke to as each officer involved with this case has a different account as to what really happened that day. For those interested – I would love to share a picture of the “mutant bee”. The insect found in Miss Roth’s floorboard really isn’t the issue here – the real issue is that 3 very special people died that day nothing was done about it. As for Mr. Camblos who says “I treat people with respect, compassion, and dignity”………actions speak louder than words big boy!


  16. Very astute Waldo, there is clearly a break in the Republican ticket. Look at Boudrows/Wolfie’s/Rivals/Whateverthehellitwillbecallednext, it has always been a big place for GOP signs. None belonging to Camblos can be found. My thinking is that a large number of Republicans, including Mr. Bell, lined up against him in the running for judge and now they are in the awkward position of having to vocally support him. Who would have thunk it, Republicans might have a conscious after all…….naaaaaaaaaa, they just hate looking overly stupid in public

  17. Camblos has absolutely no signs, or none that I have seen. That in itself has been strange.

    Anyway, again, Bell endorsed Camblos and all the Republican candidates in a big mailer (must have been over 5,000-10,000 house holds), all 5 of them there together lovin’ one another . . . in theory, hehehe.

    The theme of the mailing by the way was a desperate plea for volunteers because the Rs might lose these offices they have held for a generation . . . I mean if you read between the lines, that is . . .

    But again, I have heard (if you trust an anonymous post on a blog, heh) that at least Harding is now trying to move as far away has he can from Camblos in the public’s eye . . .

    But that’s going to be hard for Harding when one of his biggest “mentors”, crazy Ed Robb is giving Camblos a big wet kiss.

  18. Okay, so I’ve noticed what seems to be an odd pairing of political signs in Albemarle. There are a number of David Wyant/Larry Claytor signs paired together in yards in Free Union. Anybody know if there’s a story behind this? Just a coincidence on the part of homeowners, or is there something more diabolical going on?

  19. Unfortunately there are a lot of D’s supporting Wyant; I don’t know if you noticed the Toscano/Wyant pairs, and I just saw a Wyant, Claytor, Lunsford trio.

    I suppose not all Democrats agree on local issues and also maybe some of them do not fully understand the ramifications of what the BOS does.

    By the way, where are the Anne Mallek yard signs? The Wyant signs are overwhelming to say the least. I don’t know if there are even going to be any yards left for Mallek to put up her signs!

  20. Did you ever notice how people in positions of making judgments- (attorneys, judges, umpires, referees, police)- are constantly critized for just about anything they do?

    A change of Commonwealth Attorney? What makes anyone think that Denise Lunsford won’t get negative PR if she is elected? She will, as soon as some religious zealot gets wind of the fact that she has 3 children out of wedlock, REGARDLESS, of how long shes been with their father, someone will still make it seem like a bad thing. Denise and her partner are wonderful and committed parents- but someone will make a stink, bet on it.

    Camblos should absolutely maintain his refusal to talk about cases concerning such horrble matters as the deaths mentioned above. If I had such a matter, I certainly would not appreciate him or any other attorney talking to the media and perfect strangers about such a personal tragedy.

    Campaign signs? If you all are so concerned about the lack of signs why don’t you ask him , like I did- where are your signs Mr. Camblos? That would be better than supposing “something is wrong” statements which lead those of ignorance to travel with misinformed gossip.

    The judge race-now that was interesting – did you ever think that Camblos and any other “white male” had anything other than a slim to nothing chance? The higher up you go in the political arena, the worse the politics, the worse the backstabbing, and the less the politicians really care about what’s best for the community- it becomes what’s best for them and what will get them to a higher place. Would it surprise anyone that perhaps Rob Bell wanted to be the first to appoint a black or female to the court for this district?

    I’ll be glad when this election is over,gosh, I wonder who will get picked on next?

  21. That was a trip. I love how that bit of rumor-spreading about Lunsford was couched in concern for her. I can play this game, too. Gosh, it would be terrible if people found out that Camblos is living a double life, spending half of each year in Saudi Arabia, where he’s a Muslim cleric. God knows that’s an admirable trait, but I just think it wouldn’t go over well in Albemarle County.


    I particularly enjoy the logic in which you posit that we must never replace an elected official because, hey, who’s to say that somebody else might do a better job? Though that’s edged out slightly by the notion that commonwealth’s attorneys shouldn’t discuss public legal cases because somebody might be offended…especially when the people you’re concerned about offending are beggging said commonwealth’s attorney to talk about it.

    This was a grand put-on. Good show!

  22. Go Denise Go! It’s time for a change and Denise is the one to bet on. Camblos is too worried about his quarterback rating and ironically if he were playing in the NFL his rating would be one of the lowest in the league.

    Get out and vote for a change in Albemarle, vote Denise Lunsford.

  23. girlforg59,

    It is hard for me to believe that it is just coincidence that your slight of hand defense of Camblos, happens to mirror some of the vindictive gossip and rumor that Camblos himself is known to be spreading around; about how Lunsford choses to raise her children. It seems we do not have to wait until she is elected for “someone” to “make a stink”.

    More to the point there is quite a bit of difference between the issue that you raise and the scrutiny a public servant deserves regarding his effectiveness or the perceived indiscriminate use of his powers. If Lunsford is elected then by god we need to keep an eye on her and make she she is doing her JOB.

    Even more, two of the posters on this particular thread are just such people affected by “such horrible matters”, and it seems that they are quite comfortable talking about their issues in public.

    I want to know if my Commonwealth Attorney is doing the job I hired him to do, if he is not, I want a new one. I want to be comfortable knowing that my family is safe because justice is being served.

    If Camblos is uncomfortable with the scrutiny that is required of his performance in such a public and consequential position, than I suggest he find another line of work.

    I want to know if my Commonweath Attonrney is doing the job I hired him to do, if he is not I want a new one. I want to be comfortable knowing that my family is safe because justice is being served.

    If Camblos is uncomfortable with the scrutanty that is required of his performance in the such a public postion, than I sugest he find another line of work.

  24. In response to Girlfrog’s comment “What makes anyone think that Denise Lunsford won’t get negative PR if she is elected? She will, as soon as some religious zealot gets wind of the fact that she has 3 children out of wedlock, REGARDLESS, of how long shes been with their father, someone will still make it seem like a bad thing..”

    The only people I’ve heard make it seem like a bad thing are Jim Camblos and you. Are you the religious zealots you refer to? Are you insinuating that women cannot be successful and productive in their professional lives unless they are married? I wonder how many divorced female attorneys/mothers would agree with that stupidity!! The difference here is that she and Richard made a choice together to not be married and has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with her JOB! Get it?? It’s all about THE JOB – not marriage. Magician’s use this trick – it’s called the look-over-here-so-you-don’t-notice-the-truth trick. I’m just a little baffled as such a comment Girlfrog – I Googled and Googled and NOT ONCE did I find any reference to Jim winning a case because he’s married. As a friend of Richard and Denise, I can tell you first hand that they ARE married in every sense of the word. They have a beautiful family together and work very hard as parents as well as partners to one another. If the best thing you can say about Camblos’ professional life is he has been married for a long time then that is very, very sad!!! As a woman who stood up in front of God and family and promised “I DO” until the cold clammy hands of death part us – marriage has nothing to do with a certificate from the court house or a big dress and fancy food and dancing and drinking. It has everything to do with the EVERY DAY commitment between two people to be the best partner they can be and Richard and Denise have that to each other and to their children. Hey Girlfrog – the stone ages called – they said pick up a loaf of bread and some milk on your way home!!!!

  25. It saddens me to see personal attacks on Denise Lusford and Jim Camblos. I think if you want to take issue with the job or Camblos has done that’s perfectly fine(which most people here have done). I will take issues with fact, bias, and motives of someone but their personal life (with rare exeception, domestic abuse for example) should be out of bounds. It has no place in this race and cheapens the discourse.

  26. It saddens me to see personal attacks on Denise Lusford and Jim Camblos.

    Jim Camblos’ record is bad enough that there’s simply no need to attack the man along personal lines.

  27. People- before any one else reacts the insinuation that Denise is a bad person or parent is not my intent. I know Denise and I think she is a fine person, very committed in her relationship with Richard and very committeed to her children.

    My comment was based purely on the attacks on political candidates. So many people talk about how everyone talks bad about Camblos- my point was that changing people doesn’t mean the new person won’t get criticized- thus my mispplaced comment about Denise.

    I have personally heard the family values attack on Denise and find they have no place anywhere in this election. If anyone took offense to that remark, I offer my apologies and after rereading the manner in which I wrote it, I can easily see how it could be taken that way. Stacey T. I admire you for sticking up for your friend- take that energy and put it to some more good use. I did appreciate your comments.

    Waldo, your comments always amuse me- sarcasm plus. NO where in my message did I say or infer your charge. Try again. What more can Mr. Camblos say concerning the case involving the loss of Mr. Deane’s family members? Is it that people want him to say what they want to hear and nothing else will do? That event was a terrible thing for everyone involved I am sure if I were Mr. Deane, I’d be upset too.

    Jon S. – I thought you were dead on with your well put comments.

    So people,Denise, Mr. Deane, please accept my apology if my comments were taken out of context and offended you.

  28. When I send my kid off to school in the morning, I do not want his life/school/community disrupted by police incompetence supported by the Commonwealth Attorney as happened in the “smoke bomb” case. It is all about professional competence for me. When the incumbent has a serious history of incompetence, it is time for a change. Vote for Denise.

  29. The young woman involved in the accident that killed Mr. Deane’s three relatives — her surname is “Roth.” As I recall, she’s related to some powerful person in Washington, but the name isn’t familiar to me. I was under the impression that that’s why charges were not pressed against her: because she has relatives in high places. Has anyone looked into this?

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