Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel

Embed this content in your HTML


Report adult content:

click to rate:

Account: (login)

More Channels


Channel Catalog

Channel Description:

The memory of a beloved pet inspires one couple's fight against injustice.

older | 1 | .... | 60 | 61 | (Page 62) | 63 | 64 | .... | 84 | newer

    0 0

    Chuck Ross
    The Daily Caller (DC)"journalist" who broke the story of Jessica Medeiros Garrison's $3.5-million default judgment against me has a history of publishing racist and misogynistic blog posts before joining the DC staff, which once was led (in part) by current Fox News host Tucker Carlson.

    Chuck Ross broke the story of the Garrison judgment on April 4, 2015, in a post titled "Blogger Who Accused Alabama AG Of Carrying On An Affair Slapped With $3.5 Million Defamation Judgment." Ross broke the story before I even knew about the judgment -- a sign that somebody fed it to the DC -- and it's possible Ross'"inside source" on the story was . . . Jessica Garrison -- who with her professional ties to Trump attorney general Jeff Sessions, former U.S. Sen. Luther Strange, and U.S. Circuit Judge William H. "Bill" Pryor -- has the right-wing bona fides to have written for The Daily Caller herself.

    Of course, Garrison once served as head of the Republican Attorneys General Association (RAGA) and the affiliated Rule of Law Defense Fund (RLDF). That was before The New York Timesunmasked RAGA as a shakedown outfit. Not long after that story broke, Garrison quietly left her positions at RAGA and RLDF. She held an "of counsel" position at Birmingham's Balch Bingham law firm, until that firm and Luther Strange became engulfed in the evolving Birmingham Superfund scandal. Once riding high in right-wing circles, Garrison doesn't seem to do much of anything now but work as a "consultant." How does Jessica afford that $835,000 house in Mountain Brook? When Luther Strange's ties to the Superfund scandal hit the press, Garrison's social-media profile went dark for several weeks.

    Has Chuck Ross followed up with a Daily Caller post about all the dirt swirling around Jessica Garrison -- and Luther Strange? Has he informed readers that Garrison's default judgment, as a matter of law, is void and can be attacked as such at any time? Did he reveal that Garrison works for the DC? Of course not, and I didn't figure he would -- given the DC isn't known for making attempts at remotely balanced or complete journalism. After reading Ross' story on Garrison's $3.5-million judgment, the first words out of my mouth were, "This is the most inaccurate, one-sided, sophomoric piece of 'garbage journalism' I've ever read."

    Ross' article on the Garrison judgment is such a sham that it takes me a while to describe all of its shortcomings. It also requires time to list some of the seedy right-wing blogging characters with whom Ross, the DC (and Garrison?) are affiliated. We'll do that in a bit, but first, let's examine recent reporting by Washington Post media writer Erik Wemple, who reveals that Ross'"training" for his Daily Caller position included producing racist and misogynistic scribblings at a nasty blog called Gucci Little Piggy. From the Wemple piece:

    Back in 2010, some blogger wanted to vent about something. “Small towns like the one I’m from in Texas have a fat girl problem. The scent of cheap perfume, sweat, grease … forms a troposphere-like force field surrounding the town that I call ‘that fat girl smell,'” wrote the blogger. At the end of another post, this same fellow concluded, “When given equal opportunity women don’t have the tools to perform as well in business as men.”

    That’s certainly not the most hateful stuff on the Internet, if only because there’s a lot of competition in this dubious category. What makes it noteworthy, however, is that it’s part of the oeuvre that preceded the blogger’s hiring at Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller, starting in 2014.

    Also: The blogger, Chuck Ross, is now renouncing those words and many others. “A lot of the stuff I wrote on my blog and in comments sections on other websites were hare-brained responses to stupid arguments taking place within the tiny community of bloggers I knew at the time,” notes the 36-year-old Ross in a written statement to the Erik Wemple Blog.“I wrote a lot of stuff that I didn’t believe, but I’d write about it for the sake of argument, and sometimes to be provocative or to piss off other bloggers. 
    “I’ve matured immeasurably since then, and I regret that I put these ill-formed thoughts out into the public domain.”

    Sounds like Ross is trying to save what's left of his tattered reputation. Was the work that led to his spot on The Daily Caller staff really just a matter of "ill-formed thoughts"? You can decide, with assistance from Erik Wemple:

    The Daily Caller launched in 2010 under the editorial leadership of Tucker Carlson, who showed little compunction about posting content that objectifies women. Race, too, has been a problematic coverage area.

    Such proclivities may explain why the Daily Caller first took a liking to Ross, who once wrote on politics, culture, society and other topics for a blog named “Gucci Little Piggy,” an apparent reference to a lyric from the rock band Radiohead. From this platform, Ross came up with some theories. Like this one, in a 2010 post:

    Erik Wemple
     "Black people walk slow – everywhere. This is especially puzzling since they tend to run so fast. Blacks meander through cross walks in traffic. They jaywalk in front of oncoming vehicles. They do the “Dougie” on two-way streets. Don’t get stuck behind them in a crowded mall or in line somewhere; they’ll walk slow just to go against the grain or force you (white person) to swerve around them. Inevitably, they’ll make fun of you for being a goofy, neurotic white person."

    Ross has tried to sweep the ugliness in his past under the proverbial rug. But Wemple has not let him get away with it:

    Those racist thoughts no longer appear on Gucci Little Piggy. The link to the post — titled “Black Passive-Aggression” — no longer works. That’s because Ross eliminated that post from his site, which he shut down in 2014, less than a year after his hiring at the Daily Caller. Many of his posts, accordingly, survive only as block-quoted references on other sites, as well as on archived pages. “I shut it down completely,” Ross tells this blog. The remaining digital trail shows that in January 2010, for instance, he springboarded off of an essay by a social psychologist regarding genetics and behavioral differences among groups:

    The question becomes, if each one of these groups is acting in accordance with their “nature”, how do we go about doling out justice or incorporating every group into the social fold? I touched on the question previously. As an example, if blacks have higher levels of testosterone and are more predisposed towards violent and aggressive behavior, “intertribal” competition, and work-aversion – antisocial behavior in today’s Western world – is it fair to “punish” them using white Western legal and social proscriptions? In these cases, legal codes and social norms that worked well for white Westerners may not work so well for blacks of African descent or people of other ethnicities and races who have had much less time to co-evolve within “our” society’s proscriptions.

    Another archived post from “Gucci Little Piggy” went a bit further:

    Let’s use blacks – especially African Americans – as an example. Blacks’ higher testosterone levels lead to increased aggression which in today’s confined society inevitably leads to increased violence and crime. In fact, African-Americans’ ancestors – slaves – were bred for high testosterone levels. A properly implemented penal code would account for the difference in nature to curb the problem. Laws and punishments that seek to reprimand outlying behavior on the “normal” (white) distribution of lawfulness may not fit the distribution of lawfulness for blacks. 
    Obviously, the U.S.’s penal code has led to blow back on the black community. A never-ending cycle of criminality and incarceration of blacks is one of the reasons for their low socio-economic status, low education levels, and higher crime. While individuals are responsible for their actions on the micro level, systematic incongruency will lead to higher incarceration rates on the aggregate. It’s nice to think that an individual will behave in accordance with the law, but its a pipe dream that a whole group will act against their nature to live by the letter of the law.

    This all suggests The Daily Caller article about Jessica Medeiros Garrison' $3.5.-million default judgment was written by a raging racist. That's ironic because the judgment was issued by Judge Don Blankenship, a black man who apparently has no problem sucking up to the white conservative elites who have turned Alabama into a legal and political sewer.

    Jessica Medeiros Garrison and Luther Strange
    How bad is Chuck Ross' article on the Garrison judgment? And who are the sleazy band of right-wing bloggers with whom he and the DC are affiliated? We will examine those questions in an upcoming post.

    (To be continued)

    0 0

    Patty Poe
    What's it like to have your own lawyer lie to you? Carol and I have a lot of experience with this question, and "infuriating" is one answer that comes to mind -- especially when you consider that your freedom or your money probably are on the line whenever you communicate with a lawyer. But here is perhaps the more important question: How can you tell your own lawyer is lying to you? According to the punch line of a classic lawyer joke, "His lips are moving" is the usual answer. While that answer can provide a satisfying belly laugh, it is short on specifics.

    Being able to detect your lawyer's lies can only help you -- and your case -- if you are able to determine the specific nature of his lies and the honest version of what he is saying. In other words, it's not all that helpful just to know your lawyer is lying; you need to know how he's lying (why he's lying is another key factor) and what is the accurate information that helps you move forward.

    Having just come from an experience where Missouri public defender Patty Poe lied to us repeatedly about Carol's "assault of a law enforcement officer" case, this seems like a good time to help others learn from our experiences. With that in mind, this is the first of a multi-part series about a sad truth in the American justice system: Yes, the other guy's lawyer is likely to lie -- most of us kind of expect that -- but your own lawyer is the one who really can inflict pain by lying to you.

    If this sounds like an exercise in cynicism, that's because -- after 18 years of fighting injustice and being cheated by lawyers of almost every color, variety, and political stripe -- we are cynical. That's not to say we have totally given up on the notion of finding an honest lawyer. Many of the people I've stood up for here at Legal Schnauzer -- Don Siegelman, Paul Minor, Jill Simpson, Paul Benton Weeks, and others -- are people I consider honorable lawyers, attacked by the reptiles in their own profession.

    While we have not been represented by an honest lawyer -- actually, I take that back; Springfield, MO, lawyer Dan Menzie did a solid job of representing us in the case where my brothers sought to have Carol and me declared wards of the state -- we hold out hope that one will enter our orbit someday. Until that happens, let's take a look at our interactions with Patty Poe in the weeks and months before she sought to withdraw from Carol's case.

    We will examine a series of five emails Carol sent to Poe, along with Poe's responses to them. (Carol's five emails, and Poe's responses are embedded at the end of this post.)

    (To be continued)

    0 0

    Judge Chris McIntyre (center)
    (From wbrc.com)
    A judge in Calhoun County, AL, appears as a paying customer at the Ashley Madison extramarital-affairs Web site, according to publicly available records.

    Christopher M. McIntyre, a Republican, has been a district judge in Calhoun County since 2013. McIntyre beat incumbent Mannon G. Bankson in the 2012 GOP primary and will be up for re-election in 2018. Bankson had been appointed by Gov. Robert Bentley in 2012.

    Before joining the court, McIntyre served as city prosecutor in Jacksonville and worked as an assistant district attorney under the former district attorney, Joe Hubbard. Anniston is the county seat of Calhoun County.

    McIntyre earned his bachelor's degree from UAB and his law degree from Cumberland School of Law at Samford University.

    District judges in Alabama handle misdemeanors, but they also make rulings on preliminary hearings and other early proceedings in felony cases. In 2013, McIntyre dismissed one of two charges against a mother whose 4-month-old son died from heat exposure after being left unattended in a motor vehicle. The charge of leaving the child in a vehicle was dismissed, but the mother remained charged with manslaughter.

    In a 2015 case, McIntyre ordered jail time for a man who was given a second chance to properly care for his dog, only to have the animal die after being returned to his care.

    In a 2014 case, a man pled guilty before McIntyre after video showed him using his truck to lunge at bicyclists on the highway. The man was caught on video saying, ""Ought to run him in the ditch, what I should've done, should've put him in the ditch! God, I hate bicycles!"

    Based on public records available to us, McIntyre's current marital status is not clear. A brief 2013 newspaper article indicated he was married to Ashley McIntyre at that time.

    McIntyre seems to be a pillar-of-the-community type, and he sounds like a competent and reasonable judge -- especially for a Republican. So why was he stupid enough to engage with a sleazy outfit like Ashley Madison?

    We sought to pose that and other questions, but McIntyre had not responded to our requests for comment.


    Article with links to 1-40 in Ashley Madison series

    (41) David Armistead, director of enterprise sales, TekLinks, Birmingham (10/19/17)

    (42) William House, VP and controller, HealthSouth, Birmingham (10/26/17)

    (43) Olin B. Barnes III, VP, One Resource Group, Birmingham (11/1/17)

    (44) T.J. Bunn Jr., ST Bunn Construction, Tuscaloosa (11/2/17)

    (45) Todd Deffenbaugh, VP and controller, Express Oil Change, Birmingham (11/6/17)

    (46) Richard D. Crites, lawyer and reserve deputy, Springfield, MO (11/13/17)

    (47) Mark C. Trudeau, CEO, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, St. Louis, MO (11/15/17)

    (48) Peter Blasi, lawyer, Evans Blasi, St. Louis, MO (11/16/17)

    (49) Todd Wiesehan, director of resource management, Christian Co., MO (11/22/17)

    (50) Spencer Desai, lawyer, Carmody MacDonald, St. Louis, MO (11/27/17)

    (51) Johnny Aycock, administrator, University of West Alabama (12/19/17)

    0 0

    Nicholas Jain
    (From linkedin.com)
    The prosecuting attorney in my wife Carol's case in Greene County, Missouri, has a DUI in his background.

    Nicholas Dave Jain was arrested for DUI-Alcohol on Jan. 27, 2011, in Boone County, MO, which is home to the University of Missouri Columbia. Jain pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 30 days in the Boone County Jail. He received a Suspended Execution of Sentence and was placed on two years of unsupervised probation.

    Records at case.net (11BA-CR00648 - ST V NICHOLAS DAVE JAIN) show Jain's probation was completed on Aug. 22, 2013. Jain's LinkedIn page shows he was a student at the University of Missouri School of Law from 2012 to 2015. That means he was on probation when he was granted admittance to the law school.

    The Mizzou law school was founded in 1872 and touts itself as a national leader in dispute resolution. We assume admittance to the MU law school is highly competitive, with many outstanding students -- who are not on probation for DUI -- receiving rejection notices each year. Is it normal for a premier Midwestern law school to admit a student who is on probation? Is having a criminal record considered a plus for those pursuing a career in the law? Is MU having such a hard time finding qualified law students that it has to admit a convicted drunk driver?

    Those are just three of many questions we have about the Nicholas Jain case. We will address others in an upcoming post.

    Meanwhile, here is a summary of Jain's sentencing hearing on Aug. 23, 2011. It is written in courthouse lingo, but we will do our best to translate for you:


    These appear to be the key points from Jain's sentencing:

    (1) The state did not prosecute for a second count, which was dismissed. What was the second count? That's not clear from the public record;

    (2) Jain originally entered a plea of not guilty, but changed the plea to guilty, with a suspended 30-day jail sentence and two years probation;

    (3) Jain had to complete a "victim panel" and a substance abuse assessment. The "victim panel" suggests he caused harm or damages to someone while driving drunk;

    (4) Jain was ordered not to enter a private motor vehicle after consuming intoxicants and to submit to a chemical test at the request of any law enforcement officer. Jain was to reimburse any law-enforcement agency for laboratory charges related to drug testing.

    (5) Jain was ordered to complete 20 hours of community service and pay into the Crime Victim Compensation Fund. Again, this suggests someone was the victim of Jain's drunk driving.

    (To be continued)

    0 0

    Doug Jones and Dana Gresham
    (From diversityinc..com)
    Newly installed U.S. Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL) made a splash earlier this week when he named Dana Gresham, a black man, as his chief of staff. At first glance, the move looks like a step forward because blacks are wildly under-represented on Senate staffs -- in fact, Gresham becomes the only black chief of staff for a Democratic senator.

    Beneath the surface, the move doesn't look so progressive; in fact, it looks downright stupid.

    Gresham's primary experience as a Congressional staffer came when he served as chief of staff for former U.S. Rep. Artur Davis (D-AL), from 2003-08. Davis has proven to be one of the biggest political flops of the modern era. Once considered the "Barack Obama of the South," Davis' career went up in flames when he chose to ignore his liberal base and side with white, elite business interests during his run for governor in 2010.

    That didn't work out so well. The voters who had put Davis in Congress, abandoned him in droves, giving Ron Sparks an overwhelming victory in the Democratic primary. Sparks then lost to Republican Robert Bentley in the general election, and Bentley ushered in an era of extraordinary corruption -- even by Alabama standards.

    When citizens ask, "Why has Alabama become such a political sewer?" two words have to be part of the equation -- "Artur" and "Davis." But Doug Jones thinks it wise to name a Davis retread as his chief of staff? This adds to the mountain of evidence that supports what Alabama whistle blower and opposition researcher Jill Simpson has been saying for months -- that Jones is a DINO (Democrat In Name Only), who is beholden to his right-wing allies, such as Rob Riley, Bill Canary, Karl Rove, and Jeff Sessions.

    As for Artur Davis, he not only bailed out on his political base, he also back-stabbed former Democratic governor Don Siegelman. In a 2012 post titled "Artur Davis must be the sorest loser in the history of American politics," we showed that Davis had come to regret stepping forward on Siegelman's behalf while serving on the House Judiciary Committee in 2007. From the post:

    Davis says standing up for Siegelman made him appear soft on crime, and by questioning the actions of the Bush Justice Department, Davis called his own integrity into question.

    If you are a coherent, rational human being, that paragraph will leave you scratching your head. Davis, in so many words, is saying that he now regrets appearing to have principles--he now regrets suggesting that federal prosecutions should focus only on actual crimes, not the political affiliation of the accused. Artur Davis is saying that he regrets standing up for due process and equal protection under the law--that if a man has to choose between fundamental constitutional rights and his own political career, he should choose the career stuff every time.

    Artur Davis probably wonders why some people in his home state view him as the Incredible Shrinking Politician.

    Progressive voters took this to mean Davis essentially was a whore for white corporate interests, who are mostly (but not all) Republicans. Those voters made him pay, big time, at the polls. And our post explained how Davis wound up in such a pile of excrement:

    How did Artur Davis land in such a pathetic place? Our source says it's partly because of Davis' alliance with Jere Beasley. Davis' hopes for the governorship rested largely with Beasley's money bags. But Davis made the mistake of standing up for Siegelman-case whistleblower Jill Simpson at a 2007 Congressional hearing on political prosecutions. Davis appeared determined to get at the truth in the Siegelman case, perhaps shining unflattering light on GOP Governor Bob Riley and his ugly ties to Karl Rove, Michael Scanlon, and Jack Abramoff.

    That greatly displeased Jere Beasley, who has made it a practice to partner with Rob Riley on legal cases involving nursing homes, vehicle rollovers, and the like. Our source says that Davis was instructed to can the righteous crap and side with the corporate, Riley-loving, white elites. Davis did as he was told and wound up getting pummeled in the Democratic primary by a 24-point margin.

    Not only that, Davis jumped in bed with Dax Swatek, one of the sleaziest GOP operatives in Alabama. Swatek has documented ties to Karl Rove, Jack Abramoff, Ralph Reed, Alice Martin, Michael Scanlon, and a cornucopia of Republican sleazebags. Swatek also has ties to Bill Canary, Leura Canary, and the Business Council of Alabama (BCA), and Davis jumped in bed with that seedy group. From our post on the subject:

    Why would Davis want to protect Bill and Leura Canary? We can think of 4,450 reasons. According to opensecrets.org, that's the number of dollars Davis has received from the Business Council of Alabama and The Capitol Group, both headed by Bill Canary.

    Here is a breakdown of the campaign contributions from Bill Canary, in chronological order by name of the donor organization:

    * Capitol Group--$1,000 (6/23/03)

    * Business Council of Alabama--$750 (3/15/04)

    * Business Council of Alabama--$1,000 (8/8/05)

    * Business Council of Alabama--$1,000 (6/1/06)

    * Business Council of Alabama--$500 (3/30/07)

    We then turned to the Inside Alabama Politics newsletter for insight:

    Davis' leaving the House Judiciary Committee is widely viewed as an effort on his part to put distance between him and former Gov. Don Siegelman and Siegelman's legal problems. . . .

    With the Judiciary Committee trying to force former presidential adviser Karl Rove to testify, Davis' presence on the committee could have been harmful to his hope of securing some business backing for his gov. run. He is known to be cultivating some big B'ham business interests in that regard, and getting caught up in a tug-of-war with Siegelman folks could nullify his courting of business that listens to Bill Canary.

    So, Davis' strategy was to kiss the white butts of Alabama business elites. How did that turn out? Well, Davis is about as close to being a political nobody as you can get. Former State Rep. Oliver Robinson (D-Birmingham) made the same decision to bed down with "white devils" in the Birmingham corporate and legal community -- and he soon will be heading to federal prison. When will black politicians learn that sucking up to Alabama's "white devils" is likely the surest way to bring your career to a collapse?

    Every time I think of Artur Davis I'm reminded of the old Steve Martin routine where he claimed to have written a business book titled "How I turned $1 million in real estate into $25 in cash."

    But Doug Jones thinks it's a good idea to have an Artur Davis retread lead his staff? This suggests Jones isn't serious about doing anything to benefit the liberals -- especially black women -- who put him in office.

    Warnning: Do NOT Get Caught While Searching!!
    Your IP : - Country : - City:
    Your ISP TRACKS Your Online Activity! Hide your IP ADDRESS with a VPN!
    Before you searching always remember to change your IP adress to not be followed!
    0 0

    How could Carol and I tell Missouri public defender Patty Poe was lying to us, over and over? We'll start by examining our communications with her on a central question in Carol's case: Was our eviction legal? In other words, did the cops who broke Carol's arm have lawful grounds to be on our rented property, much less to be breaking into our residence?

    If you have an Internet connection, conducting legal research is much easier than it was 15-20 years ago, when it generally required a trip to a law library and the ability to sort through shelves full of reporters, law reviews, treatises, etc. In our case, Carol made Google her friend and sent Poe information about Missouri eviction law, a topic Poe admitted she knew almost nothing about. (Carol's five emails, and Poe's responses are embedded at the end of this post.) Here is Carol's email on eviction law. (My name was on the email because the eviction also involved me.) Because the subject is so central to the case, it's the longest email in the series:



    Our research shows cops had no lawful grounds to be on the rented property on 9/9/15, which means Carol was the victim of an unlawful search and seizure under the Fourth Amendment -- and all evidence gathered during such an event must be excluded, with charges against Carol dismissed. Understanding Missouri tenant/landlord law is central to describing the Fourth Amendment violations. Here are the key points:

    (1) Eviction was unlawful because rent was not late for one month– Under Missouri law, eviction proceedings cannot begin in a rent-and-possession case until rent is late for one month (RSMo 535.120). Rent for Roger and Carol Shuler was paid through July 31, 2015. Landlord Trent Cowherd initiated eviction proceedings by filing a rent-and-possession petition on Aug. 5, 2015. (See docket for Trent Cowherd v. Roger Shuler, et al, case no. 1531-AC04535 at case.net.) The Shulers’ rent was only five days late at this point, and eviction proceedings could not begin until Sept. 1 or shortly thereafter. The actual eviction took place on Sept. 9, but the proceedings were initiated 25 days too early, under Missouri law.

    (2) Eviction was unlawfully scheduled– Judgment was entered in the underlying eviction case on Aug. 31. (See docket for Trent Cowherd v. Roger Shuler, et al, case no. 1531-AC04535.) That started a 10-day window (ending on Sept. 10) when execution could not take place under Missouri law (RSMo. 534.350). But the eviction was scheduled for Sept. 9, unlawfully inside the 10-day window.

    (3) Eviction was stayed by the Shulers’ timely filed notice of appeal -- A notice of appeal, with proper payment of fees and bond, puts a stay on eviction, under Missouri law (RSMo. 534.350). There was no money judgment against the Shulers, so there was no bond. (See RSMo. 534.380.) The Shulers filed their notice and paid their fees on Sept. 8, and it appears in the case docket. (See docket for Trent Cowherd v. Roger Shuler, et al, case no. 1531-AC04535.) All lawyers in the case were notified on Sept. 8 -- via email from Roger Shuler, plus documents in the file show the notice of appeal was available to them via secure, electronic case.net file, and the Mo. Court of Appeals had sent correspondence, noting receipt of the appeal. The eviction was stayed, as a matter of law, but it took place the next day anyway. There is no excuse for the attorneys, the landlord and the sheriff to allow this to happen. It represents gross negligence -- Fourth Amendment violations.

    (4) Judgment in eviction lawsuit was interlocutory (non-final) and could not support execution -- The judgment on Aug. 27 was listed in the docket as an “interlocutory judgment,” and contained the same description when it was entered and filed on Aug. 31. (See docket for Trent Cowherd v. Roger Shuler, et al, case no. 1531-AC04535.) This apparently is because the Shulers’ counterclaim, and other issues, were set for hearing on Oct. 1, 2015. With very few exceptions, none of which applied in the underlying eviction case, interlocutory judgments are not appealable. The Shulers, at the time, did not realize it was an interlocutory judgment and went ahead and filed their notice of appeal. But based on the docket and the designation “interlocutory judgment,” the 10-day window for appeal could not have begun until sometime after Oct. 1. That means the eviction on Sept. 9 was even more premature, and more unlawful, than was originally thought.

    (5) There was no valid court order, signed by a judge and authorized by a court, allowing the eviction -- None of the eviction notices left on the Shulers' door was signed by a judge, as required by RSMo. 534.350. They were signed by Deputy Scott Harrison or Cowherd attorney Craig Lowther (or both), with a notation that “this is a court order.” Without the signature and authorization of a judge (and without a stamped Greene County seal, as required by law), the notice was not a lawful court order and suggests that Harrison and Lowther may have committed a fraud on the court, and perhaps even a crime– one that caused severe physical, emotional, and financial damages for the Shulers. Since the underlying judgment was interlocutory, it's unlikely Judge Kelly Halford Rose signed a court order because she had not issued a final judgment yet in the Cowherd lawsuit.

    (6) Even if it were true (and it isn't) the allegation of an "assault" by Carol Shuler actually involved lawful conduct under Missouri's Castle Doctrine Law -- Carol is allowed under Missouri Castle Doctrine Law (RSMo. 563.031) to protect her home and herself and loved ones from what she “reasonably believes” to be unlawful intruders. There is no question that Carol Shuler had a reasonable belief that Officer Jeremy Lynn was an unlawful intruder. And evidence shows that Lynn was, in fact, an unlawful intruder -- and police officers are not exempted under the Castle Doctrine; if they are going to break into someone's home, they need to make sure they are doing it lawfully. Carol did not push Lynn, as alleged, but it would have been lawful if she had. In short, the GCSO and PA's office brought a criminal charge against Carol for alleged behavior that, even if it happened, is lawful under Missouri's Castle Doctrine.

    (7) The eviction was an unlawful forcible entry and detainer -- RSMo. 534.020 states as follows: "If any person shall enter upon or into any lands, tenements, or other possessions, with force or strong hand, or with weapons, or by breaking open the doors or windows or other parts of a house, whether any person be in it or not, or by threatening to kill, maim or beat the party in possession, or by such words or actions as have a natural tendency to excite fear or apprehension of danger, or by putting out of doors or carrying away the goods of the party in possession, or by entering peaceably and then turning out by force or frightening by threats of other circumstances of terror, the party out of possession, and detain and hold the same in every such case, the person so offending shall be deemed guilty of a "forcible entry and detainer" within the meaning of this chapter."The actions of the landlord and GCSO personnel clearly represent a "forcible entry and detainer," making this an unreasonable search and seizure under the Fourth Amendment.

    (8) Evidence obtained from an unlawful search must be excluded -- Under longstanding Fourth Amendment law, evidence obtained during an unreasonable search and seizure must be excluded. Mapp v. Ohio, 367 U.S. 643 (1961). In the instant case, all evidence was obtained during a search and seizure that violated the Fourth Amendment. Therefore, it all must be suppressed, and there is no factual basis for Carol Shuler’s arrest, incarceration, or a trial. The "assault" charge must be dismissed.


    (1) Patty Poe sez: My interpretation of RSMo 535.120 allows for an action to be brought whenever 1 months rent is arrear, it does not contain any information as to how late the rent must be.

    The Reality: I'm not sure what Poe is trying to say here. Her response seems to be an accurate statement of the law. But in our final in-person meeting with her, she tried to take a simple issue and make it complicated, by saying that when rent is one day late, the entire month is late. This was her way of claiming that landlord Trent Cowherd, by bringing an eviction proceeding against us when our rent was only five days late, was within the law.

    Unfortunately for Poe and Cowherd, that's not what Missouri law says. First, language from House Bill 481, which ushered in the one-month provision in 2009: "(30) Changes when an eviction proceeding can commence from when the rent is six months in arrearage to when it is one month in arrearage. (Section 535.120)"

    Until eight years ago, rent had to be six months late before a landlord could bring an eviction proceeding. Under the previous law, Poe's version of calculating time obviously was not correct. And there is nothing in the new law that indicates the calculation of time has changed; it simply says a landlord can proceed with an eviction claim when rent is late by one month, rather than six months.

    On top of that, Wikipedia makes clear that the term "arrear" and "arrears," when used properly, don't mean quite the same thing: "Payment in arrear is a payment made after a service has been provided, as distinct from in advance, which are payments made at the start of a period. For instance, rent is usually paid in advance, but mortgages in arrear (the interest for the period is due at the end of the period). . . . Payment at the end of a period is referred to by the singular arrear, to distinguish from past due payments. For example, a housing tenant who is obliged to pay rent at the end of each month, is said to pay rent in arrear, while a tenant who has not paid rental due for 30 days is said to be one month in arrears."

    Our rent, like most rent, was due in advance -- and it could not be one month late until it had not been paid for 30 days. That means Cowherd jumped the gun on eviction by 25 days.

    (2) Patty Poe sez: Under RSMo 534.350 the 10 days of execution begins to run the day of the judgment. The execution may be timely based on the partial judgment, but may not be based on the formal interlocutory judgment. Unfortunately, as to the criminal charge, it doesn't matter. What matters is were the officers acting in good faith, did they believe they were executing a judgment. I disagree with your interpretation of bond, if you wanted to stay the execution of the judgment an appeal bond needed to be posted.

    The Reality: Lies don't come much bigger than this. The statute Poe cites simply does not say what she claims. The governing law is Missouri Supreme Court Rule 74.01, which holds "A judgment is rendered when entered. A judgment is entered when a writing signed by the judge and denominated "judgment" or "decree" is filed."The docket in our eviction case at case.net shows the judge issued an order on the date of our hearing, Aug. 27, 2015. But it was not entered with the court until four days later, Aug. 31. That set the beginning of our 10-day period for appeal, which ended on Sept. 10. Our eviction, however, was scheduled for (and carried out on) Sept. 9. This might be the single most unreal issue in our eviction -- it actually was scheduled on a date when, by law, it absolutely could not be scheduled. (We later learned some complicating issues that made the scheduled eviction even more unlawful than we thought. For example, the eviction judgment was an interlocutory order and could not be final until after a scheduled hearing on Oct. 1, 2015. Plus, no judgment -- other than a default judgment -- becomes final in Missouri for 30 days. So Cowherd jumped the gun even more than we originally thought.)

    The rest of Poe's response here is pure rubbish, as we have shown in previous posts.

    (3) Patty Poe sez: See above. Poe is referring to the final sentence of her response No. 2, which reads: "I disagree with your interpretation of bond, if you wanted to stay the execution of the judgment an appeal bond needed to be posted."

    The Reality: Poe is wrong, and she probably knows it because she makes no citation to law to support her claim. RSMo 534.380 spells out the reality, under Missouri law: "Applications for appeals shall be allowed and conducted in the manner provided as in other civil cases. Application for appeal shall not stay execution for restitution of the premises unless the defendant gives bond within the time for appeal. The bond shall be for the amount of the judgment . . . "

    Anyone can view the docket in our eviction case at case.net, check the judgment and see there was no money judgment against us -- no "amount" is listed. Thus, there is no bond to pay. Patty Poe can "disagree" all she wants, but she is wrong.

    (4) Patty Poe sez: See above. Poe is referring to the second sentence in her response No. 2: "The execution may be timely based on the partial judgment, but may not be based on the formal interlocutory judgment."

    The Reality: As usual, Poe makes no citation to law, so it's hard to determine what she's trying to say. Even she seems to admit execution of an eviction cannot be based on an interlocutory judgment, so that agrees with Carol. Not sure why she just didn't say, "I agree."

    (5) Patty Poe sez:"A judgment was entered, signed by a judge, which allowed the landlord to execute a notice to vacate which was signed by the clerk."

    The Reality: Poe is thoroughly screwed up here. Yes, a judgment was entered and signed by a judge, but that has nothing to do with a Notice to Vacate. It can involve a Writ of Execution, but that must be authorized and signed by a judge (per RSMo 534.350), and Poe essentially admits that wasn't done. It also must be stamped with the Greene County seal -- apparently to prevent corrupt landlords and lawyers from conducting self-evictions -- and that wasn't done either.

    (6) Patty Poe sez: "Castle Doctrine does not apply in Carol's case. Pursuant to RSMo 563.031 law enforcement are exempt from the protections of the castle doctrine. What matters is were the law enforcement officers reasonably believe they are executing an arrest (RSMo 563.046). In Carol's case, based on the execution for possession, the law enforcement officers thought they were reasonably executing an arrest for trespass."

    The Reality: We've already shown Poe is filled with copious amounts of horse manure on the Castle Doctrine issue, which doesn't even apply in Carol's case because "victim" Jeremy Lynn admits he "caused physical contact" with Carol, so she could not have assaulted him under the central element in the Missouri statute. I have no idea where Poe gets the notion that deputies thought they reasonably were executing an arrest for trespass. We have received written statements from four deputies on the scene, and none of them has claimed they were on the scene for any reason having to do with alleged trespass.

    (7) Patty Poe sez: Nothing.

    The Reality: It can't be seriously disputed that the eviction was an unlawful forcible entry and detainer (per RSMo. 534.020), so Poe doesn't want to go there.

    (8) Patty Poe sez: Nothing.

    The Reality: Again, it can't be seriously disputed that evidence gathered during an unlawful seizure that violates the Fourth Amendment must be excluded (per Mapp v. Ohio, 367 U.S. 643, 1961). Even Poe knows she can't win this argument, so she doesn't go there.

    (To be continued)


    Lies my Missouri public defender told me (Part 1) -- 1/3/18

    0 0

    From amazon.com
    A documentary about the political prosecution of former Alabama governor Don Siegelman now is available online via Amazon.

    Atticus v. The Architect: The Political Assassination of Don Siegelman is available via Amazon streaming for $4.99. It can be purchased via an Amazon electronic link for $14.99.

    Also, the DVD can be purchased at the following link.

    Directed by Steve Wimberly, the film is a detailed account of the role corrupt Republican operatives -- including Karl Rove, Jack Abramoff, and Bill Canary -- played in launching a campaign to remove Siegelman as a political opponent by having him and former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy unlawfully prosecuted and sent to federal prison for roughly six years each. "The Architect" is a reference to Karl Rove, former political adviser to George W. Bush.

    Here is the film description from Amazon:

    The story behind the most notorious political prosecution in American history. How a corrupt cadre of politicos, led by Karl Rove, secretly rigged a federal court to railroad former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman into jail because they couldn't beat him at the polls. It exposes the dark underbelly of political corruption, and reveals the moral crisis plaguing American politics.

    Legal Schnauzer has published several hundred posts about the Siegelman case -- the most extensive coverage available anywhere -- and was used as a resource during production of the film.

    Since its premiere last May at Birmingham's classic Alabama Theatre, Atticus has been screened at a number of theatres around the South -- often with Siegelman on hand to take questions afterwards. A screening at the Davis Theatre in Montgomery drew a capacity crowd after the Capri Theatre backed out of a plan to show the film, under pressure from board member and former federal prosecutor Leura Canary.

    Amazon is providing the first widespread distribution of the film.

    A key point in the movie comes when Montgomery attorney Tommy Gallion, a longtime Republican figure on the state and national scenes, reveals that he received an invitation to a meeting where the Siegelman prosecution was to be discussed. Gallion, repulsed by the idea, declined the invitation, but plans called for Karl Rove to attend the meeting.

    The documentary generally has received stellar reviews, as we reported last August:

    A documentary about the political prosecution of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman is "worth your time and your anger," according to a review at the Alabama Political Reporter (APR). The Prattville-based news site pledged to help arrange a showing of the film in Montgomery. . . .

    Josh Moon, of APR, says the documentary makes for a powerful viewing experience. He calls it "scorching." From his review:

    No wonder Leura Canary didn’t want people to see the Siegelman documentary.

    “Atticus v. The Architect: The Political Assassination of Don Siegelman” is a scorching documentary, particularly if you’re one of the many Republican officials who played a role in the prosecution of Alabama’s former Governor.

    The film does not offer much in the way of new information about the Siegelman case, Moon writes. But it takes a complex story and presents it in a solid, professional, understandable package for a mainstream audience:

    For all of the local attention this film has received – thanks in large part to Canary’s pushback against allowing the film to be shown in Montgomery — “Atticus” doesn’t really reveal much in the way of new information. What it does – and it’s the first medium to do so – is put the whole sordid ordeal in one tidy package that’s easy for the common person to digest.

    That alone would be reason enough for Canary and others to want it stopped. Because it’s only through that perspective, with all of the facts and the sequence of events laid out before you, that you understand the grandness of the scheme against Siegelman. And it is only through that perspective that the impossibility of such a grand conspiracy can be removed, and the lengths and depths to which some will go to gain a political advantage can be exposed.

    Here is more from Moon's review:

    Starting with the 2002 gubernatorial race between Siegelman and Bob Riley, “Atticus,” written and directed by Steve Wimberly, travels a course of corruption, much of which it lays at the feet of Riley, Republican operative Karl Rove, Billy and Leura Canary and Eric Holder.

    It features interviews with some of the state’s most powerful and well-known political players. And there’s even an appearance by the most famous crooked lobbyist in DC, Jack Abramoff, who recounts in detail how he and his Choctaw Indian pals forked out $20 million to beat back a lottery and to get rid of Siegelman.

    By the end, you walk away with two thoughts: Alabama politics is dirtier than I imagined (which is saying something) and Don Siegelman shouldn’t have been indicted, much less convicted.

    It is well worth your time, and your anger.

    For those who might want to conduct in-depth research -- either before or after watching the film -- we recommend our five-part series, "The Cheating of Don Siegelman." It is an extensive examination of the role judicial corruption -- at both the trial and appellate level -- played in the Siegelman debacle. From that series:

    The U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals cheated former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman in multiple ways. The most glaring example involves the statute of limitations, so we will start there.

    It's undisputed that the government was tardy in bringing bribery charges against Siegelman and codefendant Richard Scrushy.

    All of the activity that constituted the alleged bribery took place in summer 1999. But the government's original indictment was dated May 17, 2005. That's almost one full year past the five-year statute of limitations.

    Even if Siegelman and Scrushy had committed the worst sort of bribery--and the facts and the law show that they didn't commit bribery at all--the government missed the boat by a long shot.

    Below is the film's trailer:

    0 0

    Billy Underwood
    An Alabama lawyer who was indicted yesterday on a felony charge of bribing a juror has been a financial supporter of Democratic candidates for more than 20 years. That William J. "Billy" Underwood's indictment came from the office of Republican Attorney General Steve Marshall raises questions about a possible political prosecution -- especially as the 2018 elections heat up.

    An online search of political donations shows that Underwood's history of supporting Democratic candidates dates to at least 1996, when he gave $500 to the Roger Bedford for U.S. Senate campaign. Bedford lost that race to Jeff Sessions, who now is U.S. attorney general under Donald Trump.

    Underwood's office is in Tuscumbia, and his firm's Web site says he has practiced for more than 30 years, focusing on the areas of criminal defense, personal injury, and family law.

    We were dumbfounded here at Legal Schnauzer when news broke yesterday of Underwood's indictment -- not because an Alabama lawyer might have bribed a juror, but because he might have been caught and stands to be prosecuted for it. In Shelby County, where Mrs. Schnauzer and I lived for 25 years, bribing a juror is considered "good lawyering." In fact, we're not sure it's even frowned upon, unless you bribe an entire jury pool.

    In fact, we've seen up-close evidence of likely jury tampering. When Mike McGarity (our criminally inclined neighbor) sued me for malicious prosecution and conversion, a jury found that he had trespassed, but it awarded him $1,500 -- finding that I had "converted" objects that came on our property via trespass. And McGarity never had claimed any of the objects as his own or asked for their return.

    To find me liable for "converting" objects that unlawfully were on my property . . . well, it almost certainly was contrary to law -- and it suggests that jury either was tainted or was dumb as a sack of Idaho taters. In essence, I was found liable for cleaning up trash out of my own yard -- and that doesn't pass any kind of smell test one might apply.

    We've reported on a 1980s case where Shelby County lawyer Bill Swatek was found not guilty of perjury, even though the case file includes a document that proves Swatek lied to a bar committee when he testified that he did not know about a client's plan to tape record opposing counsel in a meeting. It's hard to imagine how a jury could have reached such a conclusion unless someone was bought off or otherwise tainted.

    As for Underwood, it's possible he's a scumbag who has been buying off jurors for years. But here is a peculiar paragraph from al.com's report on the bribery charge:

    Prosecutors haven't publicly identified the case in which Underwood is accused of bribing a juror. In a news release, Underwood said the charge involves "a prospective juror in a case where that individual never went to the courthouse and a jury was never empaneled."

    How can you bribe a juror who never actually became a juror -- on a jury that never existed? If that case sounds a bit thin to you, maybe it is.

    It becomes even more dubious when you consider Underwood's history of supporting Democratic causes. Here are some of Underwood's political donations, aside from Bedford for U.S. Senate, that our online search turned up:

    * $1,500, to State Democratic Executive Committee of Alabama, 2007

    * $1,500 to Deborah Bell Paseur for Alabama Supreme Court, 2008

    * $300 to Gregory K. Burdine, Democrat, for State Rep., House District 1, 2013

    * $500 to Roger Bedford, Democrat, for State Sen., District 6, 2013

    Was Underwood targeted because he was seen as someone who might help bankroll a 2018 Democratic candidate, perhaps a potential opponent for Marshall or another prominent Republican? The answer to that question is not clear for now. But as usual, the whiff of something foul is in the air around Alabama politics.

    0 0

    If you have done your legal homework and presented it to your lawyer to support a key claim or defense in your case, be on alert if you get a response like these: "IN MY OPINION, your research is not on point" or "I DON'T AGREE with all of your contentions." Responses like these -- especially if they are not presented with any relevant and accurate citations to law -- are a strong sign your lawyer is lying to you. And that likely means they are working for the other side, not for you.

    My wife, Carol, and I have loads of experience with this in Alabama, and most recently, we got another sour taste of it from our interactions with Missouri public defender Patty Poe. (See here and here.)  In fact, Poe provided a classic example of how the compromised lawyer uses this unseemly trick.

    From January through May 2017, Carol represented herself in a bogus criminal "assault on a law enforcement officer" case, brought for the sole reason of impeding civil claims related to our unlawful eviction that ended with cops breaking Carol's left arm. During that time, Carol filed at least four pro se motions that should have disposed of the case -- had Judge Margaret Palmietto bothered to hear them.

    After Poe came on board in late May, we asked her multiple times to: (a) Schedule Carol's motions for hearing; (b) Modify them and refile them under her own name (if necessary) and seek a hearing; or (c) Start from scratch and file her own motions that would be dispositive, largely on constitutional grounds, and seek a hearing.

    Poe refused to do any of those things, instead insisting that the case was headed for trial. She also claimed motions to dismiss were improper, in the circumstances of Carol's case, under Missouri Criminal Procedure. What was her excuse for failing to seek dismissal and for refusing to file pre-trial motions -- on issues that must be raised before trial or you risk waiving them, both at trial and on appeal? Here is how Poe explained it in an Aug. 27 email to Carol:

    In regards to your Pro Se Motions, I won't refile them under my name because I don't agree with all of your points and/or the legal basis. Ethically, I can't file a motion to which I don't wholly support.

    In general, A Motion to Dismiss is only used to raise the following defenses: constitutionality of the statute, double jeopardy, vindictive or selective prosecution, or entrapment. (Sup. Ct. R. 24.04). A Motion to Dismiss is not the proper vehicle to attack the sufficiency of the State's evidence, not to assert an affirmative defense, for example, castle doctrine. Additionally, a Motion to Dismiss is appropriate based on defects in the institution of the prosecution, for example the information and probable cause statement. The previous was the basis for dismissal on the trespassing count.

    Let's address the second part of Poe's response first. Here are the relevant portions of Missouri Supreme Court Rule 24.04. (Note: As you will see below, Carol raised the issue of vindictive prosecution in a pre-trial motion. Also, she filed two motions that addressed the defective Probable Cause Statement. So, even by Poe's misstated standard, those two issues clearly were in play and should have been raised before the court.)

    (b) Motion Raising Defenses and Objections.

    1. Defenses and Objections Which May Be Raised.Any defense or objection which is capable of determination without trial of the general issue may be raised before trial by motion.

    2. Defenses and Objections Which Must Be Raised.Defenses and objections based on defects in the institution of the prosecution or in the indictment or information other than that it fails to show jurisdiction in the court or to charge an offense may be raised only by motion before trial. The motion shall include all such defenses and objections then available to the defendant. Failure to present any such defense or objection as herein provided constitutes a waiver thereof, but the court for cause shown may grant relief from the waiver. Lack of jurisdiction or the failure of the indictment or information to charge an offense shall be noticed by the court at any time during the pendency of the proceeding.

    This section contains quite a bit of legalese, but can anyone find a single sentence that supports Poe's claim that a motion to dismiss is proper only in limited circumstances? I can't. In fact, the gist of the section is this: If you have anything that can be raised in a pre-trial motion, you had better do it or you risk waiving it.

    Let's take a look at the four dispositive motions Carol filed pro se:

    (1) Motion to Dismiss Charges (filed 3/14/17)

    Key Points

    (a) The Probable Cause (PC) Statement was made in bad faith, including multiple false statements and omission of facts that point to Carol's innocence;

    (b) The PC Statement represents a gross "cover charge," brought only to impede Carol's efforts to achieve justice in a civil proceeding;

    (c) Debi Wade, author of the PC Statement, admits she did not witness any alleged push involving Carol and Officer Jeremy Lynn. Wade says she was "advised" of such an event by an unnamed individual, making this inadmissible "sub hearsay";

    (d) The PC Statement failed to state that the eviction itself was unlawful on multiple grounds.

    (2) Motion to Have Proceeding Declared a Vindictive Prosecution (filed 3/14/17)

    Key Point

    (a) Charges were brought against Carol only because we challenged landlord Trent Cowherd's unlawful eviction, which ended with cops breaking Carol's arm.

    (3) Motion to Dismiss Under Missouri's Castle Doctrine (filed 5/30/17)

    Key Points

    (a) We had filed a notice of appeal the day before the eviction, putting an automatic stay on execution. Carol knew this, and when unknown men crashed through her front door, she had every reason to believe they were there unlawfully, and we were the apparent victims of a home invasion.

    (b) Under Missouri's Castle Doctrine, Carol had every right to defend herself and her property. This is true even though a written statement from "victim" Jeremy Lynn shows that he "caused physical contact" with Carol, not the other way around. In other words, Carol did not "assault" him, but under the circumstances and the Missouri Castle Doctrine, she had every right to use force to protect herself.

    (4) Motion to Dismiss for Defective Probable Cause Statement (filed 5/30/17)

    Key Points

    (a) Debi Wade claims Carol "barreled headfirst" into her, but the Misdemeanor Information (MI) makes no mention of such an incident, so Carol is not charged with that. The two charging documents contradict each other, raising questions about the accuracy of both.

    (b) The PC Statement omitted at least six key facts that are favorable to Carol and point to her innocence.

    By clicking on the four links above, you can see that Carol's pro se motions are supported by accurate citations to law. Compare that to Poe's email statement claiming to disagree with Carol's assertions -- and you will notice that Poe's words are supported by . . . well, nothing.

    As for Poe's stated concerns about her ethical obligations, that is laughable -- as we will show in an upcoming post.

    (To be continued)


    Lies my Missouri public defender told me (Part 1) -- 1/3/18

    Lies my Missouri public defender told me (Part 2) -- 1/8/18

    0 0

    Multiple forms in Greene County, Missouri, state that the county seal must be affixed to a document for an eviction order to be valid. The words are bolded in red, so they are hard to miss. Here they are:

    The seal of the Greene County Circuit Court must be affixed for this execution to be valid.

    We had at least three documents attached to our door in August/September 2015, when landlord Trent Cowherd launched eviction proceedings. None of them included the Greene County seal. (See here, here, and here.) That strongly suggests our eviction on Sept. 9, 2015, was conducted without a valid court order. It also might point to federal crimes, which can carry hefty prison sentences.

    Since public documents indicate both Cowherd and his attorney, Craig Lowther, have almost 50 years of experience with tenant/landlord issues, it's hard to figure what excuse they would have for getting this wrong.

    Why the requirement regarding the county seal? Our guess is that, without it, landlords and their lawyers routinely would evict tenants outside court authority. Such "self evictions" are unlawful in Missouri, Alabama, and probably all 50 states. And that is what Cowherd and Lowther apparently did in our case.

    We have cited at least 10 grounds upon which our eviction was unlawful, but this might be the most blatant of all. It indicates Cowherd and Lowther are true rogues -- knowingly acting outside the law -- and causing serious damage. In our case, the unlawful eviction led to cops shattering Carol's left arm so severely that it required trauma surgery -- plus Cowherd's eviction crew, according to statements from a neighbor named Fred Jones, were seen stealing many of our personal belongings.

    Is it a good idea to conduct an eviction outside the auspices of a court? No, it isn't. It's a blatant violation of civil law -- and, since it involved collaboration with the state (Green County Sheriff's Office), it could point to a federal crime under 18 U.S.C. 242 (Deprivation of rights under color of law).

    If Cowherd and Lowther think Carol and I can be a legal pain in the neck, they might soon learn that we are a joyride when compared to FBI agents and federal prosecutors. That also likely would apply to Greene County Sheriff Jim Arnott and his associates, Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson and his associates, and anyone else involved with a conspiracy to trample our civil rights.

    Consider this section from 18 U.S.C. 242:

    . . . and if bodily injury results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years,

    Did bodily injury result in our case? I'd say the comminuted fracture of Carol's left arm constitutes a bodily injury. Were dangerous weapons used? I'd say the assault rifle that was pointed directly at my noggin' constitutes a dangerous weapon. How steep can the punishment be? A fine and up to 10 years in a federal big house. Ouch!

    Do the a-holes who pulled off this little charade have some legal problems on their hands? I'd say the answer is yes. Those problems could grow to have enormous consequences, way beyond possible civil damages. And it could be caused, to a great degree, by a failure to pay heed to warnings in red on two documents -- as shown here and here. (The documents, with their red warnings, also are embedded at the end of this post.)

    Why would the Missouri mafia resort to such tactics, conducting an eviction completely outside the authority of a court? In our view, it adds to evidence of an "Alabama Underground Railroad" that wanted Carol and me and our late kitty kat, Baxter, thrown on the streets -- pronto. Consider some of the legal niceties, involving lawful evictions, that the mafia boys and girls ignored:

    * Missouri law requires rent be late by one month before initiating eviction proceedings. Ours was late by five days, and it wouldn't have been late at all if we had not been told we were going to be forced out whether we paid it or not;

    * Missouri law requires that a judgment be final before the 10-day window for filing a notice of appeal can appeal. Our judgment never became final because a hearing on Oct. 1, 2015, became a moot point when we were evicted on Sept. 9 by virtue of an interlocutory (non-final) judgment.

    * Missouri law requires that a judgment -- a non-default judgment, in any type of case -- does not become final for 30 days. That means our eviction could not lawfully have happened until sometime around mid November 2015.

    * Missouri law holds that the timely filing of a Notice of Appeal puts a stay on execution of a judgment, such as an eviction. As it turns out, we actually filed our Notice of Appeal too early --  premature application, if you prefer. We paid required fees, and payment of bond also is required for a stay of execution. Bond is determined by the amount of the judgment, and anyone can check the docket in Trent Cowherd v. Roger Shuler and see there was no money judgment against us, so there could be no bond. In other words, our eviction was stayed, but the Missouri mafia wasn't about to let anything stop its thugs from their appointed rounds.

    Our eviction was conducted so far outside the law it might as well have been held on Front Street in Dodge City -- with Matt Dillon, Doc Adams, Festus, and Miss Kitty gathered around to watch.

    Why were the Missouri Mafia and the Alabama A-holes so determined to make sure we were terrorized -- our lives turned upside down -- in September 2015? Why did my own brothers -- David (the lawyer) and Paul -- add to the turmoil by seeking to have Carol and me declared disabled and incapacitated in Sept./Oct 2015?

    We think we know the answer to those questions -- and it provides the likely reason Cowherd, Lowther, Arnott, Patterson, my brothers, and others were willing to act so far outside the law, to essentially bury us in abuse. A very important date was looming as this campaign of terror was launched. It was designed to truly make us disabled, to keep us from taking steps to assert our legal rights.

    We will explain further in upcoming posts. For now, we encourage you to keep that time frame -- Sept/Oct 2015 -- in mind. It explains a lot, we think.

    (To be continued)

    Warnning: Do NOT Get Caught While Searching!!
    Your IP : - Country : - City:
    Your ISP TRACKS Your Online Activity! Hide your IP ADDRESS with a VPN!
    Before you searching always remember to change your IP adress to not be followed!
    0 0

    William W. Smith and William W. Smith Jr.
    (From facebook.com)
    A prominent personal-injury lawyer in Alabama appears as a paying customer at the Ashley Madison extramarital-affairs Web site, according to publicly available records.

    William W. Smith has been designated a "Super Lawyer" since 2008. He is the chief named partner in Smith and Alspaugh, which has its offices at 4 Office Park Cir, Ste 212, Mountain Brk, AL. Joining Smith in the firm are attorneys Cone Owen and William W. Smith Jr.. It had been a four-man firm, but partner Marcus Clay Alspaugh died in late October.

    An online report shows that Smith practices about 60 percent in personal injury. He also works in products liability (30 percent) and medical malpractice (10 percent).

    What kind of cases has Smith tried. A fairly recent example comes from a matter styled Frye v. Smith, 67 So. 3d 882 (Ala: Supreme Court, 2011). Here are the facts behind Frye:

    On or about June 19, 2006, Rhonda Rainey and minors Roderick Arthur and Ryan Arthur were involved in an automobile accident while they were passengers in a 1998 Chevrolet Blazer sport-utility vehicle being driven by Christopher Rainey, Rhonda's husband and Roderick's and Ryan's stepfather. Roderick and Ryan were injured, and Rainey died as a result of injuries sustained in the accident. On June 17, 2008, the plaintiffs filed a complaint in the Calhoun Circuit Court naming as defendants General Motors Corporation ("GM"), the manufacturer of the Blazer, and Massey Chevrolet-Olds-Geo, Inc., the dealer who sold the Raineys the Blazer. The plaintiffs sought damages for wrongful death as to Rhonda and for personal injuries as to Roderick and Ryan, alleging claims of negligence and breach of warranty, as well as claims under the Alabama Extended Manufacturer's Liability Doctrine ("the AEMLD").

    On June 12, 2009, GM filed a notice of bankruptcy in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, thereby invoking the automatic stay codified at 11 U.S.C. § 362.

    On September 22, 2009, the plaintiffs amended their complaint to state claims against the following individuals: John F. Smith, Jr., former chairman of the board of directors of GM; Harry J. Pearce, former vice chairman of the board of directors of GM; and J. Michael Losh, former executive vice president of GM (Smith, Pearce, and Losh are hereinafter referred to as "the individual defendants").

    On November 2, 2009, the individual defendants moved to dismiss the claims against them for lack of personal jurisdiction. In support of the motion to dismiss, the individual defendants each submitted an affidavit.

    Wesley Frye was personal representative for the Estate of  Rhonda Rainey, deceased. Smith and Alspaugh lost the case on personal jurisdiction grounds. All of the individual defendants claimed they did not maintain residences in Alabama, did not own real or personal property in Alabama, did not pay taxes in Alabama, were not registered to vote in Alabama, and did not regularly travel to Alabama. Therefore, they claimed they were not subject to personal jurisdiction of Alabama courts.

    That argument won the day before the business-friendly Alabama Supreme Court. It's unclear if Smith and Alspaugh refiled the case in another jurisdiction. If so, it likely would have been Detroit, Michigan.

    Jefferson County property records show that William W. and Jan G. Smith live at 4501 Old Brook Way, Mountain Brook, AL. The property has an appraised value of $899,100, which means its market value probably is well north of $1 million.

    We sought comment from William W. Smith, but he has not responded to our queries.


    Article with links to 1-40 in Ashley Madison series

    (41) David Armistead, director of enterprise sales, TekLinks, Birmingham (10/19/17)

    (42) William House, VP and controller, HealthSouth, Birmingham (10/26/17)

    (43) Olin B. Barnes III, VP, One Resource Group, Birmingham (11/1/17)

    (44) T.J. Bunn Jr., ST Bunn Construction, Tuscaloosa (11/2/17)

    (45) Todd Deffenbaugh, VP and controller, Express Oil Change, Birmingham (11/6/17)

    (46) Richard D. Crites, lawyer and reserve deputy, Springfield, MO (11/13/17)

    (47) Mark C. Trudeau, CEO, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, St. Louis, MO (11/15/17)

    (48) Peter Blasi, lawyer, Evans Blasi, St. Louis, MO (11/16/17)

    (49) Todd Wiesehan, director of resource management, Christian Co., MO (11/22/17)

    (50) Spencer Desai, lawyer, Carmody MacDonald, St. Louis, MO (11/27/17)

    (51) Johnny Aycock, administrator, University of West Alabama (12/19/17)

    (52) Chris McIntyre, district judge, County County, AL (1/3/18)

    0 0

    Eric and Sheena Greitens
    (From stltoday.com)
    Missouri's Republican governor, who reportedly has national political aspirations, admitted to an extramarital affair last night as news reports broke on the subject.

    How bad could this get for Eric Greitens, who rose to high office mainly because his bio includes a stint as a Navy Seal? Well, the admitted affair likely will stick a fork in any "pro family" credentials he might have had. And the affair story includes allegations of blackmail that could prove especially troubling for Greitens.

    Greitens and his wife issued a joint statement last night after a St. Louis television station aired a segment about the affair, with the city's major newspaper (St. Louis Post-Dispatch) about to follow suit. From a report at stltoday.com:

    Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens and his wife, Sheena Greitens, issued an extraordinary statement late Wednesday acknowledging that he had an extramarital affair in the past and that the couple “has dealt with this together honestly and privately.”

    The statement came as a St. Louis television station aired a segment alleging that, during that affair, Greitens took a compromising photograph of the woman and threatened to publicize it if she exposed him. The statement from Greitens and his wife didn’t address that part of the allegation.

    Greitens’ attorney, James F. Bennett, issued a statement denying the blackmail allegation.

    “There was no blackmail, and that claim is false,” Bennett said. “This personal matter has been addressed by the Governor and Mrs. Greitens privately years ago when it happened. The outrageous claims of improper conduct regarding these almost three-year-ago events are false.”

    Is the blackmail claim false? There seems to be quite a bit of doubt about that. From stltoday.com:

    KMOV (Channel 4), in its report, quoted the former husband of the woman who allegedly had the affair with Greitens. The station did not quote the woman in its story, nor did it name the woman or her husband.

    The station played portions of an audio recording that the then-husband says he made in March 2015, surreptitiously, of his then-wife confessing to a sexual encounter with Greitens days earlier.

    The Post-Dispatch also has possession of the audio and has interviewed the ex-husband. The newspaper had previously decided against writing a story based solely on the husband and the audio recording, because the woman in question has consistently declined to be interviewed. However, Greitens’ public acknowledgment of an affair made it necessary to revisit that decision.

    “You’re never going to mention my name, otherwise this picture will be everywhere,” Greitens told the woman, she claims on the audio. She is heard telling her then-husband that Greitens made the statement after he took a photo while she was bound, blindfolded and partly undressed during a sexual encounter at Greitens’ St. Louis home in March 2015. That was about a month after his first public statements confirming he was considering a political run.

    The affair has its roots at a hair salon:

    The ex-husband said the woman had been Greitens’ hair stylist before he ran for governor in 2016. The woman claims in the audio recording that initial flirtation grew into an affair that became physically intimate for the first time on the morning of March 21, 2015, when she went to Greitens’ home in the Central West End.

    The woman claims in the audio that they went into Greitens’ basement, where he bound her to a piece of exercise equipment with some kind of tape, put a blindfold on her and began partly undressing her and touching her.

    That part of the encounter was consensual, she indicates in the audio, but the alleged taking of the photograph wasn’t. She said in the audio that she wasn’t aware he was doing it until she saw a flash of light through the blindfold, followed by his alleged verbal threat.

    During most of 2015, as the alleged affair was under way, Greitens was publicly discussing his plans to get into politics. He confirmed his interest in running for an unspecified statewide office in a written statement given to the media in February 2015 — less than a month before the alleged sexual blackmail episode took place.

    On Oct. 20, 2015 — three weeks after Greitens filed papers formally starting his 2016 campaign for governor — the woman sent an email to an account that contains Greitens’ name. It’s the same email account Greitens listed in setting up a political website he used in his gubernatorial campaign.

    “Eric, I’m asking you to please consider all who are involved and the circumstances around us,” the woman wrote in the email, which the Post-Dispatch obtained. “I need you to not book at the salon anymore. This isn’t fair to me, nor anyone close to us. Please respect me and my wishes. I need to move forward in my life as I know you are doing as well. Take care.”

    The woman’s ex-husband, in statements to the Post-Dispatch in the past two weeks, laid blame for the collapse of his marriage largely on Greitens.

    “Throughout that summer … the power of manipulation that Mr. Greitens had over my wife had become undeniable,” he said in the written statements, which were provided through his attorney, Albert Watkins. “Yes, the affair between (his wife) and Mr. Greitens was the main reason for the irreparability of our marriage.”

    0 0

    Jake and Bethany Reinbold, with their children
    (From facebook.com)
    A Springfield, MO, lawyer who is married to a shareholder in his firm -- and they have two young children -- appears as a paying customer at the Ashley Madison extramarital-affairs Web site, according to publicly available documents.

    George W. (Jake) Reinbold IV is one of eight shareholders at the Turner Reid Duncan Loomer and Patton law firm. Another shareholder at the firm is Reinbold's wife, Bethany Parsons Reinbold.

    Information at Ms. Reinbold's Facebook page indicates the couple has been married for five-plus years, with a son and a daughter -- both under age 6. From a September 2016 post on the Facebook page:

    Happy 5 years Jake Reinbold!! With Henry in 2012, Hannah in 2014, and a new home in 2015 . . . we've been busy! There's no one I would rather have by my side than you!!

    Public records show the Reinbold's relatively new home has an appraised value of $368,800, which means its market value probably tops $400,000.

    Jake Reinbold earned both his undergraduate and law degrees at the University of Missouri. His practice focuses on insurance defense and coverage disputes, product liability defense, legal malpractice defense and general civil and appellate practice.

    Bethany Reinbold completed her undergraduate work at Southern Methodist University and her J.D. at New England School of Law. Her practice focuses on medical malpractice, products liability, insurance defense and general civil trial practice.

    We sought comment from Jake Reinbold for this post, but he has not responded to our queries.


    Article with links to 1-40 in Ashley Madison series

    (41) David Armistead, director of enterprise sales, TekLinks, Birmingham (10/19/17)

    (42) William House, VP and controller, HealthSouth, Birmingham (10/26/17)

    (43) Olin B. Barnes III, VP, One Resource Group, Birmingham (11/1/17)

    (44) T.J. Bunn Jr., ST Bunn Construction, Tuscaloosa (11/2/17)

    (45) Todd Deffenbaugh, VP and controller, Express Oil Change, Birmingham (11/6/17)

    (46) Richard D. Crites, lawyer and reserve deputy, Springfield, MO (11/13/17)

    (47) Mark C. Trudeau, CEO, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals, St. Louis, MO (11/15/17)

    (48) Peter Blasi, lawyer, Evans Blasi, St. Louis, MO (11/16/17)

    (49) Todd Wiesehan, director of resource management, Christian Co., MO (11/22/17)

    (50) Spencer Desai, lawyer, Carmody MacDonald, St. Louis, MO (11/27/17)

    (51) Johnny Aycock, administrator, University of West Alabama (12/19/17)

    (52) Chris McIntyre, district judge, County County, AL (1/3/18)

    (53) William W. Smith, lawyer, Smith and Alspaugh, Birmingham (1/10/18)

    0 0

    Eric Greitens
    (From cbsnews.com)
    Eric Greitens, Missouri's "Navy Seal" Republican governor, is under criminal investigation over revelations about an extramarital affair that now includes possible elements of blackmail and assault.

    When St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner announced her investigation on Thursday, it apparently was to focus on allegations that Greitens took a partially nude photograph of his mistress and used it to blackmail her into silence. But Greitens allegedly also slapped the woman, according to a report today from CBS News, and that could add assault to the criminal investigation. From the CBS report:

    Missouri Republican Gov. Eric Greitens is under investigation Friday morning following new accusations of assault and blackmail he says are false. Gov. Greitens admitted to cheating on his wife with an unnamed woman, after the woman's now ex-husband exposed the alleged sexual affair.

    He is now being accused of slapping the unnamed woman with whom he had the affair, reports CBS News' Dean Reynolds. Greitens spent his Thursday in damage control trying to rally support. But now, with an official state investigation, some Republicans are asking for clarity.

    "With these allegations hanging out there, we need to get to the bottom of it," said Missouri state Sen. Doug Libla.

    Republican lawmakers in Missouri want answers, which is why there is now an active criminal investigation into Gov. Greiten's alleged conduct, including an admitted affair with his former hairdresser and accusations of blackmail and assault.

    The CBS report adds considerable detail to perhaps the most disturbing encounter between Greitens and his mistress, who had also been his hair stylist:

    Recordings obtained by CBS News appear to show the unidentified woman detailing her alleged encounter with Gov. Greitens to her now ex-husband. 
    "I knew he was being sexual and I still let him. And he used some sort of tape, I don't know what it was, and taped my hands to these rings and then put a blindfold on me," the unnamed woman in the recording said. "He stepped back and I saw a flash through the blindfold and he said you're never going to mention my name, otherwise there will be pictures of me everywhere….He tried kissing my stomach and tried to kiss me down there but didn't quite get there because I flipped out and I said you need to stop."

    Gov. Greitens' attorney says the story is a hit piece driven by former Democratic state party chairman Roy Temple.

    "If my goal was to have inflicted political harm on the governor, I would have brought this information public before the election," Temple said.

    An attorney for the woman's ex husband provided details about what prompted Greitens to slap her:

    Attorney Albert Watkins, who represents the ex-husband of the woman involved in the affair, alleges Gov. Greitens assaulted her.

    "When she admitted that she'd had sexual relations with her husband during a period of reconciliation, that the governor slapped her," Watkins said.

    Watkins claims Gov. Greitens first made physical contact with the unnamed woman in the hospital while Greitens' wife was delivering one of his children. Greitens' attorney denies any allegation of violence, and says the governor is confident he will be cleared in the investigation.

    0 0

    Eric and Sheena Greitens
    The sex scandal that has rocked the administration of Missouri Governor Eric Greitens is less than a week old, so it's probably too soon to tell where it is headed; it is in the mode where new revelations come almost every day. The latest is that Greitens has postponed a statewide tour to promote a Trump-style tax overhaul.

    If we can't see clearly about the Navy Seal governor's future, what about his past? What does that tell us about the roots of the sex scandal? Was it driven by a deep reservoir of arrogance that seems to have engulfed Greitens and those around him, for years? The answer appears to be yes, and here are three prime examples of arrogance in Greitens World.

    ericgreitensforpresident.com? WTH

    It's long been known that Greitens has presidential ambitions. But the general public might not know just how far back this goes. A trusted reader/researcher/legal resource found the following Web domain information the other day:

    Registry Domain ID: 1563106540_DOMAIN_COM-VRSN
    Registrar WHOIS Server: whois.godaddy.com
    Registrar URL: http://www.godaddy.com
    Update Date: 2015-05-27T14:52:14Z
    Creation Date: 2009-07-21T18:45:25Z
    Registrar Registration Expiration Date: 2018-07-21T18:45:25Z
    Registrar: GoDaddy.com, LLC
    Registrar IANA ID: 146
    Registrar Abuse Contact Email: abuse@godaddy.com
    Registrar Abuse Contact Phone: +1.4806242505
    Domain Status: clientTransferProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientTransferProhibited
    Domain Status: clientUpdateProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientUpdateProhibited
    Domain Status: clientRenewProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientRenewProhibited
    Domain Status: clientDeleteProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientDeleteProhibited
    Registry Registrant ID:
    Registrant Name: Registration Private
    Registrant Organization: Domains By Proxy, LLC
    Registrant Street: DomainsByProxy.com
    Registrant Street: 14455 N. Hayden Road
    Registrant City: Scottsdale
    Registrant State/Province: Arizona
    Registrant Postal Code: 85260
    Registrant Country: US
    Registrant Phone: +1.4806242599
    Registrant Phone Ext:
    Registrant Fax: +1.4806242598
    Registrant Fax Ext:
    Registrant Email: ERICGREITENSFORPRESIDENT.COM@domainsbyproxy.com
    Registry Admin ID:
    Admin Name: Registration Private
    Admin Organization: Domains By Proxy, LLC
    Admin Street: DomainsByProxy.com
    Admin Street: 14455 N. Hayden Road
    Admin City: Scottsdale
    Admin State/Province: Arizona
    Admin Postal Code: 85260
    Admin Country: US
    Admin Phone: +1.4806242599
    Admin Phone Ext:
    Admin Fax: +1.4806242598
    Admin Fax Ext:
    Admin Email: ERICGREITENSFORPRESIDENT.COM@domainsbyproxy.com
    Registry Tech ID:
    Tech Name: Registration Private
    Tech Organization: Domains By Proxy, LLC
    Tech Street: DomainsByProxy.com
    Tech Street: 14455 N. Hayden Road
    Tech City: Scottsdale
    Tech State/Province: Arizona
    Tech Postal Code: 85260
    Tech Country: US
    Tech Phone: +1.4806242599
    Tech Phone Ext:
    Tech Fax: +1.4806242598
    Tech Fax Ext:
    Tech Email: ERICGREITENSFORPRESIDENT.COM@domainsbyproxy.com
    DNSSEC: unsigned
    URL of the ICANN WHOIS Data Problem Reporting System: http://wdprs.internic.net/ >>> Last update of WHOIS database: 2018-01-12T21:00:00Z <<<

    You can see that way back in 2009, almost eight years before he took office as governor, someone saw Eric Greitens as presidential timber. The Los Angeles Timeswrote about this the other day, in light of the emerging sex scandal:

    Missouri Republican Gov. Eric Greitens courted controversy and touched off political disputes even before acknowledging an extramarital affair and facing bombshell allegations that he blackmailed the woman involved.

    Greitens has been a rising star in the national Republican Party and a welcome partner for state GOP lawmakers, whose favored policies had faced a Democratic governor's veto pen until Greitens' election in 2016. He also seemed to have his sights set on even higher office, having secured the web address EricGreitensforPresident.com years before running for governor.

    But he also made missteps as a first-time candidate and then as a freshman governor, raising questions in particular about secrecy.

    Greitens acknowledged Wednesday that he had an extramarital affair in 2015, but he denies the blackmail allegations and is telling supporters that a St. Louis prosecutor's investigation will clear him.

    Greitens and his wife focus on one family -- their own 

    After acknowledging the affair, Eric and Sheen Greitens were stunningly self-centered in their public statements. Consider these words from Sheena Greitens:

    “We have a loving marriage and an awesome family; anything beyond that is between us and God. I want the media and those who wish to peddle gossip to stay away from me and my children.”

    It apparently has not occurred to Sheena Greitens that there is another family involved here -- that of Eric Greitens' mistress -- and that marriage broke up. Based on news reports, they have one or more children. So one term that could be applied to Eric Greitens is "home wrecker" -- although Mrs. Greitens only seems to be concerned with her own home.

    A word of advice for Mrs. Greitens: Don't marry a man with gubernatorial and presidential ambitions and then say you want the media to stay away from you and your children. It makes you look clueless and wildly out of touch.

    Snakes, vultures, liars, sociopaths -- oh my!

    In early 2016, candidate Eric Greitens wrote an email to supporters in which he expressed an extraordinarily dark view of his opponents and Missouri's political climate. From a report by Tony Messenger, of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

    “There is, obviously, something wrong with politics, and there is something particularly, deeply, disturbingly, wrong here in Missouri,” [Greitens] wrote in the message to backers. “I’ve never been in politics before, but even in the brief time that I’ve been running for Governor, I’ve been exposed to some of the worst people I’ve ever known. Liars, cowards, sociopaths. They are often deeply broken and disturbed people, who — like criminals who prey on the innocent — take their pleasure and make their living by victimizing honest people. They are drawn to politics as vultures flock to rotting meat — and they feed off the carcasses of vice.”

    The future governor was just getting warmed up.

    “The … most vicious punishment for the pathetic people who lower themselves like slime to slander, is that they have to live with themselves. They can hire people to praise them, slip cash to people who will tell ’em — like drug dealers pushing dope on kids — it’s ok, everybody does it. They can spend money to have other people tell them comforting lies. But I believe that, deep down, they know the truth about themselves, and they see it staring back at them in the rotted, bloated, self-serving soul in the mirror. ”

    Greitens called them vultures. Liars. Sociopaths. Drug dealers. Criminals. Snakes. All in one email.

    “They are corrupt in ways that I didn’t know people could be corrupt,” he wrote of those in his way.

    Wow, that truly is a message of "hope." And we now know that had Greitens bothered to look in a mirror, he would have seen a snake smiling back at him.

    Warnning: Do NOT Get Caught While Searching!!
    Your IP : - Country : - City:
    Your ISP TRACKS Your Online Activity! Hide your IP ADDRESS with a VPN!
    Before you searching always remember to change your IP adress to not be followed!
    0 0

    Eric and Sheena Greitens
    (From stltoday.com)
    The sex scandal swirling around Missouri Governor Eric Greitens has officially entered cover-up mode, with revelations that Greitens used a state-paid attorney to try to keep the story from hitting the press. If Missouri history is an indicator, that could be a sign that Greitens, considered a possible future GOP presidential candidate, is headed down a slippery slope that ends with a forced resignation.

    As if the news could not get much more treacherous for the embattled former Navy SEAL, reports broke last night that the ex husband of Greitens' mistress has more audiotapes than had originally been made known to the public -- and he has turned them over to the FBI and state law-enforcement officials. On top of that, five GOP lawmakers in Jefferson City called on Greitens to resign.

    The angle of Greitens using a state-paid attorney in an attempt at damage control could prove to be his undoing. From an article at stltoday.com:

    Before news of a scandal involving Gov. Eric Greitens broke on Wednesday, at least one of his taxpayer-paid attorneys was on an intelligence-gathering mission.

    In audio obtained by the Post-Dispatch, an attorney who works in the governor’s office, Lucinda Luetkemeyer, is recorded speaking with St. Louis attorney Albert Watkins about the political storm that was brewing.

    Watkins represents the man who has alleged that Greitens in 2015 took a compromising photo of the man’s then-wife and threatened to release it if she ever spoke of their affair.

    It is unclear from the recording whether Luetkemeyer knew of those allegations.

    “Can I just ask you this question, Al?” Luetkemeyer asks in the audio. “Is your client talking to anyone in the media right now?”

    His client was talking to the media.

    Watkins, who provided a copy of the audio recording to the Post-Dispatch, said the conversation occurred about 2 p.m. Wednesday. At 10 p.m., St. Louis television station KMOV-TV (Channel 4) first reported that Greitens, a Republican, had an extramarital affair as he was preparing his successful run for governor. Greitens has denied taking a photo or threatening the woman.

    The use of public resources for personal business has serious implications:

    The recording offered a behind-the-scenes view of the Greitens’ governmental team and how it was trying to gather information about the emerging story. It also raised questions, Watkins said, about whether taxpayer resources should have been used to help control possible fallout.

    “I found it chillingly disturbing that she would make that call as a state-paid employee,” Watkins said.

    Watkins said he did not tell Luetkemeyer that he was recording their conversation. Such a recording is generally legal in Missouri if one party is aware that a recording is being made.

    Glendale Mayor Richard Magee, who has worked as an attorney for several St. Louis County municipalities, said state employees shouldn’t expend taxpayer resources on a public official’s private legal matters.

    “That person should be working on state-related business,” he said. “This is a great example of a personal situation ... It has nothing to do with his position other than it may diminish people’s confidence in him.”

    You don't have to go too far back in Missouri history to find another politician who paid dearly for using public resources for personal gain. Like Greitens, William Webster was considered possible presidential timber. But in the early 1990s, Webster became ensnared in a federal investigation:

    The federal investigation of William Webster began in 1991. The U.S. attorney's office in Springfield received a tip about a land deal involving a partnership that included William, Richard Jr. and Sen. Webster [Bill's brother and father]. The partnership sold a financially troubled condominium development to a group that included Stephen Redford, a resort developer who had been investigated by the attorney general's office.

    Then, prompted by several articles in the Post-Dispatch, the investigation turned to William E. Roussin, the St. Louis lawyer who defended the Second Injury Fund for the attorney general's office and collected campaign contributions for Webster.

    Throughout his campaign for governor, Webster denied that he was under investigation, even though federal authorities had informed him in November 1991 — a year before the election — that he was a target.

    Redford and Roussin pleaded guilty to federal corruption charges, implicating Webster as they did so. Webster hadn't been charged. By then the court of public opinion, in Missouri's Nov. 3 general election, had issued its verdict. Webster lost the governor's race overwhelmingly to Democrat Mel Carnahan.

    Despite the $5 million that Webster collected for his campaign, he still shaved campaign expenses by using his staff and equipment in the attorney general's office for political purposes. He reluctantly pleaded guilty to that last week before U.S. District Judge D. Brook Bartlett.

    Could Eric Greitens be headed down the same path as William Webster, also a Republican? The release of more audiotapes will not help matters. From an article at stltoday.com:

    An attorney for the man whose secretly recorded conversation with his wife exposed Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens’ extramarital affair last week says his client made additional recordings as well, and that he has forwarded them to both the St. Louis circuit attorney’s office and the FBI.

    The attorney, Albert Watkins, didn’t specify that the FBI requested the previously undisclosed recordings, but he said there was an “expression of interest” by the federal agency about them.

    Watkins declined to comment on how many additional recordings between the then-spouses exist, or whether the additional recordings involved any discussion of Greitens.

    Greitens last week acknowledged he’d had an affair with the woman, his hair stylist, in 2015, as he was starting his run for governor. Greitens has forcefully denied a related allegation that the woman made to her husband: that Greitens took a nonconsensual photo of her while she was bound, blindfolded and partly undressed during a sexual encounter and that he threatened to publicize the photo if she exposed their affair.

    The taking of nonconsensual photos of a person in a state of full or partial nudity is a Class A misdemeanor in Missouri, punishable by up to a year imprisonment. Some legal experts say Greitens’ alleged threat regarding the photo also could constitute blackmail or extortion.

    0 0

    Patty Poe
    How can one stand accused of a crime without an accuser? It can't happen, under the law, but it has been happening for months in the case against my wife, Carol, in Missouri.

    And that is just one of many issues on which Missouri public defender Patty Poe has attempted to blow smoke up our fannies. In fact, we have come up with this question: How many different ways can a public defender lie to her own client? If you are talking about Patty Poe, of Greene County, Missouri, the answer is "a lot."

    Poe represented Carol, for about six months in an "assault of a law enforcement officer case" (1631-CR07731 - ST V CAROL T SHULER at case.net) before bailing out in late November after prosecutor Nicholas Jain filed a notice that he was waiving jail time. For the first month or two Poe was on the case, she conned us into believing she actually had integrity and was representing Carol's best interests. But then came a string of lies about case and procedural law in the matter, telling us Poe likely was working for someone else's best interests all along.

    In a series of emails to Poe dated Aug. 9, Carol showed that the prosecution had violated her rights under the Confrontation Clause to the Sixth Amendment. (See Email No. 3 embedded with Carol's other emails at the end of this post.) Poe, as we came to realize was her usual style, responded with a crock of garbage. (All of Poe's responses are embedded at the end of this post.) Here is Poe's short, not so sweet, and downright deceitful answer:

    The Confrontation Clause only applies at trial. It does not apply as to a probable cause statement. The probable cause statement is sufficient to proceed on the charge, even if untrue. If we proceed to trial though. Capt. Jeremy Lynn will have to testify or someone else who witnessed the "assault." It can't be Debi Wade.

    Is Poe's contention about the Confrontation Clause supported by any citation to law. Nope. That's probably because there is no law to support it. To be sure, the U.S. Supreme Court has left some murkiness in the Confrontation Clause picture. Here is how a 2010 Illinois Law Review article described it:

    The Supreme Court has never indicated that a defendant has no right to confrontation prior to trial, but it is not clear that the Confrontation Clause applies in full force to pretrial hearings either.

    As you can see, that statement hardly is a model of clarity. But two things seem clear: (1) Nothing precludes a defendant's right for confrontation prior to trial; (2) And case law indicates Carol, at a minimum, has a right (pre-trial) to know the identity of her accuser. As it stands, the charges against her are based on the word of an unnamed "ghost," which probably makes them what we call "sub-hearsay.

    What is the Confrontation Clause. It's an extremely important component of American criminal law, so important that it is a bedrock of the Sixth Amendment. Here's how we described it in an earlier post:

    What about Carol's Sixth Amendment right to "confront her accusers in a criminal case," which is known as the Confrontation Clause. In essence, it holds that if someone accuses you of a crime, you have a right to know who that person is -- and you have a right to confront that person via cross-examination at trial. Historically, the Confrontation Clause has been considered fairly important in the U.S. justice system; it prevents an anonymous individual from accusing someone of a crime and then hiding from the consequences of making an accusation that might be false.

    But that is exactly what is happening in Carol's case -- and it suggests that word of the Confrontation Clause, proposed to Congress in 1789, has not reached outposts such as Springfield, Missouri.

    For Carol, the Confrontation Cause is critical because there is no accuser in her case. Debi Wade, author of the Probable Cause (PC) Statement, claims Carol pushed Officer Jeremy Lynn as he burst through the front door of our duplex apartment for an unlawful eviction on Sept. 9, 2015. But Wade admits she did not witness the event, that someone "advised" her that it happened. It now has been more than 10 months since Carol's arrest and this "adviser" still does not have a name.

    Poe claims it doesn't matter because the Confrontation Clause only applies at trial, not for pre-trial matters. But she could not be more wrong. Who says so? The U.S. Supreme Court. From our earlier post:

    Typically, the right to confront your accuser involves cross-examination at trial, and Carol's case has not reached that point. But Crawford v. Washington, 541 U.S. 36 (2004), one of the best-known Sixth Amendment cases in modern history, makes it clear the Confrontation Clause goes beyond trial proceedings. From Crawford:

    The text of the Confrontation Clause reflects this focus. It applies to "witnesses" against the accused — in other words, those who "bear testimony. . . . "An accuser who makes a formal statement to government officers bears testimony in a sense that a person who makes a casual remark to an acquaintance does not. The constitutional text, like the history underlying the common-law right of confrontation, thus reflects an especially acute concern with a specific type of out-of-court statement.

    Various formulations of this core class of "testimonial" statements exist: "ex parte in-court testimony or its functional equivalent — that is, material such as affidavits, custodial examinations, prior testimony that the defendant was unable to cross-examine, or similar pretrial statements that declarants would reasonably expect to be used prosecutorially, . . . statements that were made under circumstances which would lead an objective witness reasonably to believe that the statement would be available for use at a later trial, . . . "Statements taken by police officers in the course of interrogations are also testimonial under even a narrow standard. Police interrogations bear a striking resemblance to examinations by justices of the peace in England. The statements are not sworn testimony, but the absence of oath was not dispositive.

    We learn that at least three types of pre-trial statements are covered by the Sixth Amendment's Confrontation Clause:

    (1) An out-of-court statement that "bears testimony," such as the one made by Debi Wade's "adviser";

    (2) A pretrial statement that would reasonably be expected to be used prosecutorially, at a "later trial."  This includes an affidavit, such as Debi Wade's PC Statement, which included the statement made by Debi Wade's unknown "adviser;"

    (3) Testimonial statements taken by police officers in the course of interrogations, even if they are not taken under oath -- such as the one made by Debi Wade's "adviser."

    Missouri case law borrows from Crawford to drive home the importance of the Sixth Amendment and its Confrontation Clause. Clearly, Carol has a right to know the identity of her accuser and to confront him in pre-trial activities, such as depositions, interrogatories, and requests for production of documents:

    The term "at a later trial" indicates the Confrontation Clause applies to pre-trial activities, including the filing of an affidavit, such as a PC Statement. For good measure, a Missouri case styled State v. Stewart (MO Ct. of App., 2009), borrows from Crawford to drive home the same point. From Stewart:

    Finally, while "[t]he Sixth Amendment's Confrontation Clause provides that, '[i]n all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right . . . to be confronted with the witnesses against him,'"Crawford v. Washington, 541 U.S. 36, 42 (2004), that safeguard applies only if the out-of-court statement was "testimonial" in nature. The Court in Crawford did not give a "comprehensive definition of 'testimonial'" but stated that "it applies at a minimum to prior testimony at a preliminary hearing, before a grand jury, or at a former trial; and to police interrogations."

    The statement made to Debi Wade was part of a police interrogation, and under the Sixth Amendment, Carol is entitled to know who made the statement and to confront him both at trial and pre-trial. And yet, the person's identity has been kept from her for almost a year. Here is a summary from our earlier post:

    Bottom line: The Sixth Amendment's Confrontation Clause ensures that you cannot be accused of a crime by a "ghost." Your accuser must be identified, even in pre-trial documents, and that has not happened in Carol's case. It means she never should have been arrested (twice), incarcerated (twice), or subjected to any criminal proceedings.

    Patty Poe's lies have covered a wide range of legal subjects, from her fantasy that cops were on our premises to conduct a trespass arrest, to Missouri's Castle Doctrine Law, to critical constitutional issues (with guidance from Poe's mysterious "friend"), such as the Fourth Amendment right to be free from unlawful searchers -- now to Carol's Sixth Amendment right to confront her accuser.

    But we are not finished. There is more about Patty Poe's tendency to obfuscate -- putting her own client at great risk.

    (To be continued)

    0 0

    Tucker Carlson
    Thanks to The Washington Post's Erik Wemple, we know The Daily Caller's (DC)shoddy reporting on Jessica Medeiros Garrison's $3.5-million default judgment against me was not an accident; that's the kind of journalism you get when you hire "reporters" with training at a racist and misogynistic blog. We also know the DC and reporter Chuck Ross have connections to some dubious characters in the right-wing blogosphere.

    All of this is timely because my wife, Carol, and I have two pending federal lawsuits -- "The Jail Case," involving my unlawful incarceration in Alabama, and "The House Case," involving the theft of our Birmingham home of 25 years via a wrongful foreclosure -- and Garrison is a defendant in both of them, as is her one-time boss and paramour, former U.S. Sen. Luther Strange.

    Here is an update on the two lawsuits: Service is almost completed in district court (Birmingham) on "The Jail Case," and responsive pleadings are flowing in from defendants. Most will seek unlawful dismissal via the notorious "Twombly" and "Iqbal" heightened-pleading standards -- which do not even apply in the Eleventh Circuit, but defendants surely will lean on them anyway. "The House Case" is on appeal in circuit court (Atlanta), and it has been delayed by a technical mistake I made on our Notice of Appeal. I've filed a Petition for Panel Rehearing, and The Eleventh Circuit's affirmance should be overturned, followed by reversal of Judge R. David Proctor's dismissal (that's the Proctor who is super close to Trump AG Jeff Sessions). That, of course, depends on appellate judges in Atlanta acting with integrity and showing respect for black-letter law -- and that is a huge if. I soon will be writing about my mistake that caused a delay in "The House Case," although it should have no impact on the ultimate outcome of case.

    As for Chuck Ross' wretched article on the Garrison judgment -- which flowed from her lawsuit about my reporting on her extramarital affair with Luther Strange, for whom she once served as campaign manager -- it's bad on more than a half dozen levels. Here is one indicator of biased reporting: Neither Ross nor the DC has attempted a follow-up on former Alabama Senate President Lowell Barron and his statements that Garrison and Strange, in fact, had an extramarital affair that had a profound impact on Strange's ability to function as Alabama attorney general.

    Has Garrison filed a defamation lawsuit against Lowell Barron? The answer is no. Is that because she knows his statements and my reporting are accurate. The answer is, without question, yes.

    What about the hatchet job Garrison concocted with the assistance of Marie Claire, a Hearst-owned fashion magazine? That exercise in defamation is one of the subjects in our lawsuits. Have Chuck Ross or the DC pursued any of these angles to the story? We've seen no sign of it. Is that because Jessica Garrison works for the DC? Probably. That's "fair and balanced" right-wing "journalism" for you.

    What about other shortcomings in Ross' story on the Garrison judgment? We addressed them in a July 2015 post. First, we showed that Wyoming-based investment guru Foster Friess kicked in $3 million to help get The Daily Caller off the ground. According to online reports, DC founder Tucker Carlson also lined up sponsorships from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Mining Association (Drummond Company), and Southern Company (parent of Alabama Power). Garrison used to work at Alabama Power law firm Balch Bingham, until the Birmingham Superfund scandal started getting too close, so that might explain her ability to get her opinion pieces published at DC.

    Ali Akbar's profile at Grindr
    We also showed that Friess provided seed funding for the National Bloggers Club (NBC), a consortium of down-scale right-wing pundits, such as Robert Stacy McCain, Aaron Walker, John Hoge, and John Patrick Frey, along with Karl Rove's American Crossroads. It's not clear if the NBC still is functional, but it once was headed by a felon named Ali Akbar, who has a documented taste for criminality and trolling for gay sex. More on this scuzzy bunch in a moment. But first, from our earlier post, are just a few of the problems with Chuck Ross' piece on the Garrison judgment:

    What kind of journalism does Foster Friess support? If The Daily Caller story is any indication, the journalism would have to improve to reach the level of shoddy. In fact, I'm not sure you can call it journalism at all, based on the following:

    * The story does not mention that the $3.5 million was awarded in a DEFAULT judgment. That means it was not based on the merits of Garrison's claim; it was based on the fact I did not appear at key junctures in the case because I did not receive notice of depositions, hearings, etc.

    * The story does not mention that I didn't receive notice because my wife and I were forced to move due to a legally questionable foreclosure on our home, right on the heels of my unconstitutional jail stay in the Riley case.

    * The story mentions neither the foreclosure nor the wildly unlawful nature of my arrest, in violation of more than 200 years of First Amendment law. Is that because right-wing interests connected to The Daily Caller were involved in, or at least had advance knowledge of, both the foreclosure and the arrest?

    * The story states that Garrison and Attorney General Luther Strange vehemently denied my reports of an extramarital affair. The story does not say that their denials came at a hearing where no opposition was present. It does not say that their denials came without any cross examination, with no depositions, production of documents, or any other form of discovery. It also does not say that Jessica Garrison's divorce file remains sealed in Tuscaloosa County, for no apparent lawful reason.

    * The story refers to my reporting on Garrison and Strange as "flimsy accusations." Oh, but wait, Jessica Garrison works for the outfit that produced the story. Did Tucker Carlson's team reveal that to its readers? Nope. Can't get much more "fair and balanced" than that.

    * Has The DC followed up with reports about my efforts to have the default judgment overturned? Has it reported on my Motion to Vacate, which cites numerous cases that show the judgment is due to be set aside? Has it reported that my motion drew no written response from Garrison attorney Bill Baxley? Has it reported that much of the Garrison default judgment is based on allegations regarding her son that I did not even report? Hah, are you kidding? The DC has ignored all of that. (After all, Jessica Garrison works for them.)

    As for the National Bloggers Club, Foster Friess' other foray into right-wing "journalism," it apparently has collapsed from the weight of its own sleaze. And what a load of sleaze it was. (Note: The NBC's Web site says a relaunch is coming in July 2016, but it's not clear if said relaunch ever happened, and there appears to be no new content on the site.) From our earlier post:

    President of the NBC, of course, is Ali A. Akbar, he of the multiple felony convictions and a tendency to troll for gay sex on the Grindr geosocial app. Akbar threatened a lawsuit against me for reporting on the contents of a letter that Alabama attorney and whistleblower Jill Simpson wrote to Robert Bauer, counsel for President Barack Obama's 2012 re-election campaign.

    The Simpson letter included allegations that Rove and Akbar had engaged in a homosexual relationship. Simpson's investigation of the matter came after she received a copy of Akbar's Grindr ad, which said he was looking for sex with "men who are Republican, political, and love to discuss politics and philosophy." I don't know about the philosophy part, but Karl Rove certainly seems to qualify under the rest of that description.

    Case law dating back roughly 45 years shows that Akbar had no valid defamation claim against me. But he enlisted Montgomery lawyer Baron Coleman to send me a threatening letter, dated October 26, 2013, which was three days after Alabama deputies beat me up inside my own home, doused me with pepper spray, and hauled me off to jail for a five-month stay.

    For good measure, The Daily Caller also lists Ali Akbar as a contributor--and that brings us back to Tucker Carlson's little toy and the "journalism" it practices.

    Speaking of Tucker Carlson, WaPo's Erik Wemple recently conducted a lengthy and contentious interview with the Fox News host. Much of that interview focused on Chuck Ross' background and other political/media topics. Carlson more or less closed the interview with this: "It’s great to talk to you! Call me any time, I’m always around."

    If Wemple takes Carlson up on that, here are just a few of the follow-up questions that come to mind:

    * Is Carlson aware that one of the DC's contributors, Ali Akbar, has a criminal record?

    * Does the DC plan to write a story about Akbar's criminal record?

    * What about Akbar's documented trolling for gay sex on Grindr?

    * What ties did Daily Caller have to the National Bloggers Club?

    * Does Daily Caller plan to report on Jessica Garrison's default judgment -- and the fact it is void, as a matter of law, and can be attacked as such at any time?

    * Does Daily Caller plan to report on Garrison's exit from the Republican Attorneys General Association in the wake of a New York Times expose, plus her exit from Balch Bingham law firm amid reports of Luther Strange's ties to the Birmingham Superfund scandal?

    * Will Daily Caller report that almost all of Garrison's default judgment is based on false assertions she made, under oath, that I reported Luther Strange was the biological father of her son -- when, in fact, I never reported any such information?

    * Will Daily Caller attempt to have Jessica Garrison's divorce file unsealed and report on its contents?

    0 0

    Craig O'Dear
    A Missouri lawyer, who was a subject of our reporting on the Ashley Madison extramarital-affairs Web site, has formed an exploratory committee for a possible independent run at a U.S. Senate seat.

    Craig O'Dear is a partner at Bryan Cave LLP and a founding member of the firm's Kansas City, MO, office. We reported on O'Dear's status as a paying customer at Ashley Madison in a series of posts from late 2016 (see here, here, and here). Our posts included extensive comments from O'Dear and from his ex-wife Stephanie O'Dear. At the time of our reports, the O'Dears stated they had reconciled as a couple, although they had not remarried.

    Claire McCaskill (D-MO) currently holds the Senate seat that O'Dear has targeted. Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley is considered a prime contender on the Republican side.

    Does Craig O'Dear believe Missourians are ready for an Ashley Madison customer at U.S. senator? We will seek additional comment from him, but so far, his timing seems a little off. O'Dear announced his exploratory committee on Jan. 10, the same day that Gov. Eric Greitens admitted to an extramarital affair that has sparked a criminal investigation, apparently based on allegations of blackmail and assault.

    In his written comments for our earlier posts, O'Dear wrote all around various issues connected to Ashley Madison, but he did not deny being one of the firm's paying customers:

    Mr. Shuler:

    The article you have drafted and now threaten to publish conveys a false and misleading impression of people about whom you have little knowledge.

    Stephanie was and is the love of my life. We were married in 1995, and legally divorced in November 2012. Many years prior to the effective date of our divorce, we ceased to be a married couple, and my marital obligations to Stephanie came to an end. I was not unfaithful in the marriage, and Stephanie never alleged in our divorce proceeding that I had been. Your draft article conveys an impression to the contrary. That impression is false.

    Further, I have never at any time in my life been romantically involved with any woman who was married. Your draft article conveys a false impression to the contrary on that issue as well by highlighting the marketing tag line for the dating site you reference and implying anyone who might have used it did so for the purpose of engaging in an extramarital affair. The only possible purpose you could have to do this is to publish something you believe will draw traffic to your site, with an intent to embarrass and damage me and Stephanie and our children, both personally and professionally. During this difficult period in my life, whatever social activity I engaged in violated no marital obligations. My focus was being the best father I could be to my children and being the best lawyer I could be practicing law and taking care of my clients. If you took the time to interview anyone who has any personal knowledge of my life, you would know this.

    O'Dear proceeded to describe the reconciliation with his ex wife, tossing in a few threats of legal action at me -- even though he could not cite any explicit statements in our posts that were false:

    The good news in all of this is that in the Spring of 2014, Stephanie approached me and expressed a desire to re-establish our relationship and reunite our family. Unlike most of the stories of broken marriages, this one has a happy ending. We engaged in a process that achieved our objective, and Stephanie and I are again partners in life, living together with our children, and enjoying the blessing of all that entails. This is yet another point on which your draft article conveys a false and misleading impression, because you know nothing about the people and the family you seek to slander.

    Stephanie O'Dear
    I am copying Stephanie on this email. I told her of your communication to me. She has seen your draft "article" and she told me she had some comments to convey to you as well. You should refrain from publishing your false and slanderous "article." If you proceed to publish this false and misleading article, an act which is legally actionable, we insist you publish in full in the same article my response and Stephanie's response, which tells the real story of our lives and corrects the many false impressions your article conveys.

    O'Dear has launched a campaign Web site, which looks top-notch, so he apparently is serious about this race. He already has drawn attention from Missouri's mainstream media. Bryan Lowry and Lindsay Wise wrote about O'Dear's plans at the Kansas City Star:

    A Kansas City lawyer could shake up one of the most competitive Senate races in the country as he seriously considers running as a centrist independent against U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill and her eventual Republican challenger.

    Craig O’Dear, a Kansas City attorney who has the backing of the national Centrist Project and has been quietly contemplating a run for a year, has launched an exploratory campaign committee for a possible independent bid for the Senate. O’Dear said Wednesday that he’ll make his official decision by the end of February.

    The Missouri race promises to be one of the most expensive in the country and could determine which party controls the Senate.

    Tony Messenger, a columnist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, also reported on O'Dear's political goals:

    Craig O’Dear has an interesting sense of timing.

    On Monday, television personality Oprah Winfrey dominated the political landscape after her Sunday night speech at the Golden Globes spurred speculation that she would run for president in 2020.

    The next day, 85-year-old ex-sheriff Joe Arpaio, convicted of criminal contempt of federal court but pardoned by President Donald Trump, announced he was running for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in Arizona.

    O’Dear, a Kansas City lawyer, is not a celebrity. Outside of certain trial lawyer and political donor circles, he’s not a big name.

    But on Thursday he will be making a move that could make him one.

    The longtime Republican is forming an exploratory committee to consider a run for the U.S. Senate in Missouri — as an independent.

    “Our two-party system no longer serves the people,” O’Dear told me in an exclusive interview. “What we’re getting from it is division and gridlock.”

    In one of the Senate races that will be most watched nationally, O’Dear, 60, intends to take on Democratic incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill, and whoever survives a three-way primary among Republicans, expected to be Attorney General Josh Hawley.

    It is a Quixotic challenge, but O’Dear swears he’s not tilting at windmills.

    “It’s not the first time somebody has told me I couldn’t do something,” says the partner at Bryan Cave. He expects to make a final decision about jumping into the Senate race by the end of February. And if he runs? “I absolutely believe we will win.”

    Speaking of interesting timing -- and centrism -- O'Dear has ties both to Hillary Clinton . . . and Eric Greitens. He might want to be distancing himself from the latter in the near future. Writes Messenger:

    In 2016, O’Dear donated to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

    At the same time he was hosting a fundraiser at his home for Republican Eric Greitens, who became Missouri’s governor. O’Dear will always be grateful for the advice the former Navy SEAL offered his son, Cullen, now a sophomore at the U.S. Naval Academy. But Greitens’ political drift to the extreme ends of the Republican Party serves as a symptom of what O’Dear believes is wrong with the American political system.

    “I’m not asking you to leave your political party,” he says. “But if you will support our movement to re-create a center, it will have the effect of moderating both parties.”

    0 0

    A federal civil-rights lawsuit soon will be filed against the Missouri cops, landlord/lawyers, and others responsible for the unlawful eviction that ended with my wife, Carol, being beaten so severely that she suffered a comminuted fracture of her left arm.

    We recently reported that such excessive-force cases can lead to both civil and criminal liability. Members of the Greene County Sheriff's Office (GCSO) who were involved in brutalizing Carol -- and pointing one or more assault weapons at my head -- likely know they are at risk for landing in prison. That probably explains the stonewalling on discovery in the pending "assault of a law enforcement officer" case, which was brought as a "cover charge" to impede Carol's efforts to seek civil justice.

    If we are fortunate enough to receive a federal judge with integrity, the civil damages in our case could be substantial -- especially for "Mr. Blue Shirt," the cop who played the most direct role in breaking Carol's arm. But that might be the least of the worries facing cops who broke Carol's arm. Online research shows the threat of prison time is very real for cops who engage in "deprivation of rights under color of law," per 18 U.S.C. 242. This language from Sec. 242 should make a few sphincters tight around the GCSO:

    . . . and if bodily injury results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years,

    Missouri cops could be looking at up to 10 years in federal prison? Yes, indeed. And we've found a number of recent cases from around the country where cops wound up in the slammer for roughing up citizens and depriving them of their right to be free from the use of excessive force.

    The most recent case comes from early December 2017 in Atlanta, GA, and involved an off-duty police officer who mistakenly thought a man was stealing a tomato at a Wal-Mart and used a baton to beat the man and break his leg. (See video above.) From a report at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

    A now-retired Atlanta police officer was found guilty Friday in a case in which he beat a man accused of stealing a tomato at Walmart, Channel 2 Action News reported.

    While off duty in October 2014, Trevor King, 49, severely beat Tyrone Carnegay after accusing him of stealing a tomato, for which Carnegay said he had a receipt in his pocket.

    King was in uniform at the store on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard downtown when he stopped Carnegay, grabbed his shirt and started to strike him with his baton, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a December 2016 statement, when King was indicted on charges of excessive force.

    King’s retirement took effect in January and a trial began in July.

    The case caught the attention of the FBI after a mistrial that resulted from inconsistencies in the police report, Channel 2 reported.

    King testified over the summer that Carnegay reached for King’s gun belt, but store surveillance footage failed to show any such action, the news station reported.

    Charges against King included falsifying a police report and use of unreasonable force.

    False police reports? Gee, that sounds familiar. Carol's case is littered with them. And prosecutors in her criminal case have been stonewalling on discovery for more than 10 months -- probably with good reason. What about other recent cases around the country where cops have been found guilty in federal excessive-force cases? Here they are:

    Charleston, SC, December 2017

    Officer Michael Slager was sentenced to 20 years in prison in the shooting death of Walter Scott. Slager pleaded guilty in May to criminal civil-right violations. Aggravating factors apparently led to a sentence beyond the normal 10-year limit. From a report at CNN:

    At the time of the shooting, Scott was only the latest black man to be killed in a series of controversial officer-involved shootings that prompted "Black Lives Matter" protests and vigils.

    Federal prosecutors sought a life sentence, arguing Slater, then a North Charleston police officer, had committed second-degree murder and also should be punished for obstructing justice by providing the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division with false statements.

    Slager, 36, shot Scott five times in the back "for running away, simply for having a broken taillight," Jared Fishman of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division told the court in his closing statement this week. It's "time to call it what it was -- a murder," Fishman said, specifying second-degree murder.

    As for aggravating circumstances, the statute gets serious. If a court finds cops tried to kill a suspect, punishment can grow exponentially. From the statute:
    . . . and if death results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death.

    Boynton Beach, FL, November 2017

    Officer Mike Brown was found guilty of using excessive force in the beating of an unarmed man who was a passenger in a car that led police on a high-speed chase. The beating was caught on Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office helicopter footage, and the case included charges of falsifying records. From a report at the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel:

    Brown faces up to 15 years in prison. The judge let the widower go home after the conviction to make arrangements for his 8-year-old son, who is undergoing psychiatric treatment after Brown’s wife died in October 2016.

    Brown’s attorney, Bruce Reinhart, said the father of three also cares for his 72-year-old mother. His eldest son, who serves in the United States Navy, will likely take custody of his younger son while his 22-year-old daughter attends college.

    Las Vegas, NV, September 2017

    Former officer Richard Scavone pleaded guilty to use of excessive force and falsifying police records for slamming a woman's face into the hood of his patrol car. The incident was caught on video. From a Fox News report:

    In a plea deal, Scavone, 50, admitted shoving the woman to the ground, grabbing her by the neck, slapping her head with his hand, then slamming her face twice into the hood of the car, FOX5 in Las Vegas reported.

    He also slammed her into one of the car’s doors, the report said.

    The woman suffered unspecified “bodily injury,” the indictment said.

    The officer had become angry when the woman tossed her coffee at him after he told her to leave the area, FOX5 reported.

    Scavone admitted knowing that what he did was against the law, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. He faces a maximum sentence of up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.

    Chicago, IL, August 2017

    Officer Marco Proano was convicted for a shooting that injured two teens. From a report by Chicago's NBC TV affiliate, Channel 5:

    Police dashcam video captured the moment Officer Marco Proano fired his service weapon into a car full of teenagers the night of December 22, 2013.

    Investigators found that he fired 16 shots in all, and a grand jury indicted Proano in 2016 on charges that he violated the civil rights of the teens – whose families already reached a civil settlement with the City of Chicago.

    Proano was charged with two counts of unreasonable use of force, with each count carrying a maximum sentence of 19 years in prison.

    The trial marked the first time in at least 15 years that a Chicago police officer faced federal criminal charges in connection with an on-duty shooting.

    Warnning: Do NOT Get Caught While Searching!!
    Your IP : - Country : - City:
    Your ISP TRACKS Your Online Activity! Hide your IP ADDRESS with a VPN!
    Before you searching always remember to change your IP adress to not be followed!

older | 1 | .... | 60 | 61 | (Page 62) | 63 | 64 | .... | 84 | newer