Stockton, Calif. Mayor Anthony Silva was arrested Thursday and charged with providing alcohol and playing strip poker with minors at his youth camp last summer. Photo by Amador County Sheriff’s Office
STOCKTON, Calif., Aug. 4 (UPI) -- The mayor of Stockton was arrested Thursday for playing strip poker with minor and giving them alcohol while at a youth camp, police said.
Anthony Silva, 42, was arrested at the camp and charged with one felony count of making an illegal recording and one misdemeanor count each of providing alcohol to a minor, cruelty to a child by endangering their health and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
Silva, who was released Thursday afternoon on $20,000 bail denied the accusations.
Amador County District Attorney Todd Riebe said the incidents occurred Aug. 7, 2015, at the Silver Lake Camp. The camp hosts about 75 children between 5 and 17 years old, where Silva has often hired minors to work as counselors, court documents showed.
Federal agents confiscated Silva's cell phone and laptop last fall and found 23 photos and four video clips, taken at the camp between Aug. 3 and Aug. 9, Riebe's offices said in a news release.
One of the video clips -- where the phone was put down and recorded only audio -- contains "a conversation between participants involved in a strip poker game that occurred in Silva's bedroom," the DA's news release said. "The conversation between the participants indicated that they were naked. One of the participants was a 16-year-old male."
The game allegedly includes Silva, the 16 year old, an 18-year-old female, a 19-year-old female and two 19-year-old males, according to the document.
Investigators allege the 18 year old told them alcohol was available at the camp and several counselors drank. She also said "all of the participants in the strip poker game at some point were naked."
Mark Reichel, Silva's attorney, released a statement calling the timing of the arrest "very suspect" and the result of politics.
"Authorities have had all of this information for a year," he said. "And have spent unlimited resources looking everywhere they could to find something to justify the investigation."