Tuesday, 1 July 2014
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Should Judge Blackwood Be Criminally Prosecuted?
Posted By Sharon Rondeau On Monday, June 30, 2014 @ 1:57 PM In National |
PETITIONING GOVERNMENT NOW A CRIME PUNISHABLE WITH PRISON TIME
by Sharon Rondeau
(Jun. 30, 2014) — 12:40 p.m. EDT – The petition launched at change.org on Sunday calling upon the Tennessee judiciary to cease and desist its illegal arrest, charging and conviction of innocent citizens for attempting to expose government corruption has garnered 55 signatures as of this writing.
The petition specifically demands that Senior Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood vacate the verdict of a jury from last Tuesday which convicted CDR Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III (Ret.) of “aggravated perjury” and “extortion” after attempting to petition the McMinn County grand jury with evidence of crimes committed by the judges, prosecutors and grand jury foremen of Tennessee’s Tenth Judicial District.
One of the signers, Col. Harry Riley (Ret.), is founder of Operation American Spring (OAS) and has called upon numerous federal officials to resign their posts for violations of their oaths to the U.S. Constitution. In a comment left under his signature on Monday, Riley stated:
Judicial illegal activity has become tyranny in the U.S. What is the matter with “we the people” in Tennessee?? These judges, prosecutors, jury foreman are criminals that should be prosecuted.
Since late 2009, Fitzpatrick has exposed systemic corruption in the Tennessee courts which has been borne out by many other victims and members of the Tennessee House of Representatives and Senate. In Tennessee, no private citizen can bring evidence or a criminal complaint to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) or the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee, as The Post & Email has recently re-confirmed.
For decades, criminal court judges have been appointing grand jury foremen, who often exert undue influence on the grand jury, which affects whether or not they issue an indictment against an accused. Last Tuesday, Fitzpatrick’s conviction was issued as a result of of a tainted grand jury which, in January, had been prejudiced by then-McMinn grand jury foreman Jeffrey Cunningham and then voted to indict Fitzpatrick in March.
Blackwood refused to consider that the grand jury’s indictment of Fitzpatrick was affected by Cunningham’s informing of them of Fitzpatrick’s “history” in January and the escorting of the grand jury members out of the courthouse after Fitzpatrick was asked to leave, giving them the impression that he was a dangerous person.
One grand jury said in sworn testimony in a pre-trial hearing in the Fitzpatrick case that she voted to indict because she herself felt “threatened” by Fitzpatrick based on what she had been told.
Blackwood upheld the indictments and the convictions.
Prosecutor A. Wayne Carter claimed that Fitzpatrick lied in petitions he attempted to submit to the grand jury over a period of months and which were blocked by Cunningham, but in sworn testimony last Monday, Cunningham stated that Fitzpatrick made no misstatements.
Fitzpatrick’s attorney, Van Irion, claimed that Fitzpatrick had exercised his constitutional right to petition his government for the redress of grievances under the First Amendment, “to do what the law plainly allows.”
During his closing argument at the trial, Carter objected to Fitzpatrick’s having worn his Navy uniform to the trial, although a congressional statute allows retirees to do so.
The Post & Email launched a second petition at whitehouse.gov here:
urging that the FBI be tasked with launching a criminal investigation into public corruption in Tennessee, which has been ranked third in corruption in a recent research study.
Since at least 1980, Blackwood has participated in choosing grand jury foremen who have worked for years and sometimes decades in violation of Tennessee code.
The conviction of a citizen without a proper trial is called “attainder.”
Assaults on the First Amendment have increased under the Obama regime to include as targets veterans, homeschoolers, religious freedom groups, Second Amendment advocates, Tea Parties, traditional marriage and pro-life groups.
As a result of Tuesday’s verdict, in Tennessee and the nation as a whole, petitioning the government for redress is now a crime punishable by prison time. How many are willing to live with that?
© 2014, The Post & Email. All rights reserved.
Article printed from The Post & Email: http://www.thepostemail.com
Sunday, 29 June 2014
A CHRISTIAN CITIZEN, EUGENE WITING’S PREAMBLE
“The Constitution of the United States is dead.
“On June 24 2014 in Judge Kerry Blackwood’s court the Constitutional rights of Commander Walter Fitzpatrick were taken away. His right to present to the Grand jury redress of grievances of massive government corruption was denied.
“Please note that his rights under the Constitution are the same as yours and when Commander Fitzpatrick lost his rights so did you. There will be a federal civil rights trial in the near future over this miscarriage of justice.
“Commander Fitzpatrick was found guilty with hearsay and lies on the part of the prosecutor Mr. Carter [Colonel, U.S. Army Retired] and [banker – attorney] Mr. Jeffry Cunningham. There was and never will be any proof of guilt. Mr. Cunningham denied Commander Fitzpatrick his right ( and yours ) to present to the Grand jury redress of grievances against the judicial side of Government of McMinn County TN. [Cunningham] also broke the law by not recusing himself when he knew what was in the presentment to the grand jury.
“The prosecutor Carter would not even honor Commander Fitzpatrick by calling him Commander. All you Vets beware you may be next if you have the courage of your convictions and keep your oath to our nations military to stand for freedom.
“Note there are more Americans in prison in the United States per capita than any country in the world. Many of which do not deserve to be in prison put there by a rigged grand jury. Some are guilty of “thinking “ about doing something. Now the thought police are on the seen.
“Juries are so important that they can even nulify bad laws. Did you know that? The defense is banned to even bring that up in the court room.
“Shame on the judges, prosecutors and juries!”
NOW, SHARON RONDEAU’S REPORT
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First Amendment Dead in Tennessee pb
Posted By Sharon Rondeau On Saturday, June 28, 2014 @ 4:37 PM In National |
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR THE REST OF THE COUNTRY?
by Sharon Rondeau
(Jun. 28, 2014) — The same McMinn County, TN grand jury which was prejudiced by its foreman in January issued a presentment in March charging CDR Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III (Ret.) with extortion, harassment, stalking, and aggravated perjury.
On Tuesday, Fitzpatrick was convicted on the counts of extortion and aggravated perjury but acquitted of harassment. Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood, who was ordered to leave the bench in an unrelated case because of questions about his “impartiality,” dismissed the charge of “stalking” prior to the end of the trial.
On numerous occasions since late 2012, Fitzpatrick had attempted to submit evidence of crimes committed to the McMinn County grand jury in an exercise of his First Amendment right to “petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
In Tennessee’s Tenth Judicial District, which includes McMinn, Polk, Bradley and Monroe Counties, the grand juries alternate months of service so that the January group skips February and is convened again in March, then in May.
In January, then-grand jury foreman Jeffrey Cunningham had “informed” the grand jury of Fitzpatrick’s “history” after Fitzpatrick attempted to submit evidence of misconduct on the part of public officials to include Cunningham, the criminal court judges, prosecutors, and local law enforcement. Fitzpatrick had asked Cunningham to recuse himself from the matter since he was named in the complaint, in accordance with state law, a point which Fitzpatrick’s attorney, Van Irion, raised during the trial.
One of the grand jurors said she voted to indict Fitzpatrick because she felt “intimidated” by him after what Cunningham had told the group in the grand jury room.
Cunningham refused to remove himself from presenting any of Fitzpatrick’s petitions to the grand jury while he served as foreman, reportedly resigning on March 4 of this year.
In February, Cunningham threatened Fitzpatrick with arrest if he should make another effort to bring a submission to the grand jury.
Blackwood was not impartial in Fitzpatrick’s case, as he had refused Fitzpatrick’s request without a hearing for a subsequent restraining order against Cunningham.
At issue was the hand-selecting of the grand jury foreman by the criminal court judges, a practice dating back decades in Tennessee but which is found nowhere in state code. The Tennessee Rules of Criminal Procedure mandate that the grand jury foreman, while chosen by the judge, “must possess all the qualifications of a juror.” A person chosen without the same vetting process as those selected in accordance with state law may or may not possess those “qualifications.”
The Fifth Amendment in the Bill of Rights is the only place in our founding documents which mentions the grand jury. One legal source notes it as a “protection against abuse of government authority.” When the Constitution was under deliberation, a Bill of Rights was insisted upon by the anti-Federalists, who feared that a central government created by the states would overreach its constraints and usurp power from the people.
Since Cunningham admitted that Fitzpatrick’s claims were accurate during testimony, it is unknown how the conviction on “aggravated perjury” materialized. In Tennessee law, “extortion” signifies an attempt to “coerce” someone to do something.
There must be a unanimous finding of guilt for a conviction. A legal analysis of the provisions of the Sixth Amendment, which includes the right to a trial by a jury of one’s peers, states:
By the time the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights were drafted and ratified, the institution of trial by jury was almost universally revered, so revered that its history had been traced back to Magna Carta. 42 The jury began in the form of a grand or presentment jury with the role of inquest and was started by Frankish conquerors to discover the King’s rights…
The guarantees of jury trial in the Federal and State Constitutions reflect a profound judgment about the way in which law should be enforced and justice administered. A right to jury trial is granted to criminal defendants in order to prevent oppression by the Government. Those who wrote our constitutions knew from history and experience that it was necessary to protect against unfounded criminal charges brought to eliminate enemies and against judges too responsive to the voice of higher authority. The framers of the constitutions strove to create an independent judiciary but insisted upon further protection against arbitrary action. Providing an accused with the right to be tried by a jury of his peers gave him an inestimable safeguard against the corrupt overzealous prosecutor and against the compliant, biased, or eccentric judge. . . . [T]he jury trial provisions . . . reflect a fundamental decision about the exercise of official power–a reluctance to entrust plenary powers over the life and liberty of the citizen to one judge or to a group of judges. Fear of unchecked power . . . found expression in the criminal law in this insistence upon community participation in the determination of guilt or innocence.” 48
With the systemic corruption within the Tennessee courts as reported by The Post & Email over more than four years, it is difficult to know whether or not the jury was “impartial” in Fitzpatrick’s case.
The prosecutor, A. Wayne Carter, said that Fitzpatrick lied in his attempted grand jury submissions, but Cunningham said that Fitzpatrick’s statements were accurate.
Carter retired from the U.S. Army as a “full-bird” colonel and has asked that Fitzpatrick be sentenced as a “career criminal” with enhanced sentencing for attempting to exercise his constitutional rights to petition the grand jury. Carter excoriated Fitzpatrick for wearing his Navy uniform by asking, “How dare he wear his uniform here? How dare he?”
Title 10 U.S.C., Section 772 (c) permits the wearing of a military uniform by retirees. Fitzpatrick served in the Navy for 24 years and was honorably discharged.
In his submission, Fitzpatrick had attempted to inform the grand jury that its then-foreman, Jeffrey Cunningham, was acting outside the law by failing to inform them that he was a court employee hand-selected by Judge Amy Reedy rather than empaneled from a randomly-chosen jury pool as state law requires. No one objected when Irion stated in a pre-trial hearing that Cunningham was an employee of the Tenth Judicial District rather than an empaneled juror; however, during the trial, both Carter and Cunningham characterized his role as “a juror.”
Last fall, Tennessee Attorney General Robert E. Cooper’s office issued a brief to an appellate court which stated unequivocally that the grand jury foreman “is not impaneled” as the other grand jurors are.
In Monroe County, grand jury foreman Gary Pettway was described in an indictment against Fitzpatrick as “a juror.”
Cunningham was “selected” when Reedy called him “at home” one evening and asked him to serve as her “next grand jury foreman” for McMinn County beginning in 2012.
As the alleged victim of the crimes, Cunningham testified on the witness stand that the statements in Fitzpatrick’s criminal complaints were accurate. Carter insisted that they were not. Cunningham retracted his position as Fitzpatrick’s accuser at the pre-trial hearing, and no police report or sworn statement was produced.
How, then, did the jury reach its conclusions?
Innocent men and women have spent years, and sometimes decades, in state prisons in Tennessee because of corrupt judges.
During Fitzpatrick’s trial, a rally calling upon a raise in the minimum wage was held outside the courthouse. With last week’s jury verdict – that petitioning the Government for a redress of grievances is a felony – such future rallies will no longer be possible under the First Amendment.
The Obama regime targeted Tea Party, Second Amendment, pro-life, Christian, traditional-marriage groups and even a U.S. senator beginning in 2010 in an effort to quell their freedom of speech guaranteed under the First Amendment. Obama operatives have been actively involved in silencing anyone investigating Obama’s background, life story, birthplace, or the veracity of his statements. At the time of this writing, at least one of the operatives is facing criminal indictment for some of the same “crimes” of which Fitzpatrick was accused.
Beginning approximately three weeks ago, Fox News, Fox News Radio, and The Washington Times began to openly discuss the issue about Obama’s eligibility, birthplace, and life narrative, ending a six-year media blackout on the subject. Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who launched an investigation at an undisclosed time after his Cold Case Posse declared that Obama’s long-form birth certificate and Selective Service registration form were fraudulent, has told The Times that he is “honing in” on the creators of the forgeries.
Now, almost daily, new revelations of corruption, intimidation, possible blackmail and illegal leaking of confidential information on the part of the regime are made by internet and broadcast media.
On March 17, 2009, Fitzpatrick filed a criminal complaint of treason against Obama for being a “foreign born domestic enemy.” After filing it on the federal level, Fitzpatrick attempted to take it to the Monroe County grand jury, where he resided at the time. It was then that he discovered that Tennessee grand jury foremen serve for years, and sometimes decades, at the pleasure of criminal court judges.
Five years ago, Fitzpatrick was a lone voice naming Obama in the commission of treason. Today he is not.
Adm. James A. Lyons (Ret.), formerly Commander, Pacific Fleet while CDR Fitzpatrick served in the Pacific Fleet, has described Obama’s actions as “the agenda an enemy would devise.” On June 23, Lyons wrote in an op-ed in The Washington Times:
…What’s happening to America’s standing in the world is not due to incompetence, as some have claimed. This is planned. We are witnessing the Obama administration’s embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood creed, which is to destroy America from within. Congress must be responsible to take back America. Nothing less is acceptable.
Numerous others have joined the chorus accusing Obama of treason against the United States of America.
Radio show host Carl Gallups, who is privy to some of the investigative findings of Arpaio and the Cold Case Posse, said on his “Freedom Friday” show last night that Obama comes from a “deep Sunni [Muslim] background.” During the 2008 campaign, Obama claimed he was a committed Christian, but his actions have belied his words as he continues to arm Islamic radicals throughout the Middle East.
Gallups also asserted that “we know” that blackmail was used by the regime as an attempt at intimidation, although he did not elucidate further.
In January 2010, Fitzpatrick wrote of the corruption in the Tennessee courts:
Judges and prosecutors trashed our grand juries in favor manufacturing a dark, secret machine few know about or know how to operate. The state designed and manufactured the machine to take direct action against people the state criminally accuses.
The machine and its operation are necessarily cloaked and hidden in order to keep the machine running smoothing without outside interference. Secrecy further gives cover to government criminals self-absorbed in protecting themselves and government criminal cohorts operating similar machines throughout Tennessee State and throughout America.
In The Post & Email’s first report on Tennessee judicial corruption entitled “The Face of Treason,” Fitzpatrick described the criminality of a long-serving grand jury foreman as “breathtaking and beyond people’s ability to believe.”
At the Bundy Ranch in April, BLM agents retreated after a large group of people arrived to defend the Bundys’ property and right to graze their cattle on the land in dispute. Of the entrenched judicial corruption in Tennessee, Fitzpatrick has said, “It’s going to take large numbers of people standing up.”
“But a Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.” — John Adams
© 2014, The Post & Email. All rights reserved.
Article printed from The Post & Email: http://www.thepostemail.com
Saturday, 28 December 2013
10TH DISTRICT, BRADLEY COUNTY NEWS, CRIMINAL COURT JUDGE SEEKS TENNESSE 10th JUDICIAL DISTRICT CRIMINAL COURT JUDGE POSITION!
(JAG HUNTER note: Counselor Irion is running for the position presently held by Judge Amy F. Armstrong Reedy!)
Quoted from The Bradley County News ~ December 27, 2013 at 8:37 AM (LINK)
Van Irion seeks 10th Criminal Court Judge position
Van Irion has announced his intent to run for the 10th Criminal Court Judge position.
This is most welcome news to the many hopeful in the area that have waited for this announcement with much anticipation and have a great fondness for Van Irion, pronounced “ear ee on.”
I am most pleased to announce that Van Irion is running for Criminal Court Judge in the 10th which spans four counties, Bradley, Polk, McMinn and Monroe.
I have spent many hours with Van and his family and can safely say he is the real deal.
I have seen him in lows as well as highs and he has always remained focused, diligent and head strong to complete the task at hand.
I have shared the National stage with him marching from DC, to Atlanta and to Lubbock Texas as a Lead Plaintiff in a class action lawsuit aimed to stop the dreaded rollout of nationalized healthcare.
We have shed tears of joy and and have also traveled the eastern US hemisphere, much of the 10th District and the 3rd Congressional District in pursuit of our goals. Gone door to door with him to countless homes spreading the message. I call Van Irion a close friend and can tell you there are few finer than him.
I have vetted him and he is a man of great integrity, honor and trustworthiness. He will make a fine Judge representing the 10th Criminal Court Judge division, he will do so impartially and with integrity.
Tell your friends, light up the social airways with this news, VAN IRION for 10th Criminal Court Judge.
Share and then share some more and on election day, get out and pull the lever for Van Irion.
A word from Van Irion:
Do not be unjust in judging — show neither partiality to the poor nor deference to the mighty, but with justice judge your neighbor.
Thank you for taking the time to consider my candidacy for the position of Criminal Court Judge for Tennessee’s 10th District.
I am deeply committed to the rule of law. As an experienced attorney I have always maintained a commitment to fairness for all participants. As Criminal Court Judge I will uphold the Tennessee and United States Constitutions fairly and impartially, treating all participants in the court process with dignity and respect.
With your support, I hope to serve all of you as Criminal Court Judge for the Tenth Judicial District of Tennessee.
I respectfully ask for your support and for your vote. In the meantime, if you have any questions or want to get more involved please contact me.
Van Irions experience:
Van Irion is an experienced attorney, admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, the District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee, and all State Courts in Tennessee. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Tennessee School of Law, Transactions Attorney for the University of Tennessee Research Foundation, and Lead Counsel and Founder of Liberty Legal Foundation.
Prior to becoming an attorney Mr. Irion was a Medical Researcher at the University of California School of Medicine and then founded a biotech company.
Mr. Irion served in the US Air Force as an Air Traffic Controller at USAF Little Rock Air Force Base then continued to serve his community as a volunteer Firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician.
• Federal and State Courts
As lead attorney Van has litigated jury trials and bench trials in both state and federal courts. Mr. Irion has litigated several cases to the United States Supreme Court. He has handled criminal and civil cases in Tennessee’s Family courts, Juvenile courts, Sessions courts, Circuit courts, Chancery courts, Criminal Court of Appeals and Civil Court of Appeals. He has also practiced before the Tennessee and Georgia State Supreme Courts, the 6th and 9th U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals, and U.S. District Courts in Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, Arizona, and California. He has also handled arbitrations, mediations, bankruptcy challenges, and administrative court matters.
• Attorney for UT
For several years Van served as a transactions attorney for the University of Tennessee Research Foundation where he managed the University’s patent portfolio. Van drafted and executed intellectual property licensing agreements and negotiated multi-million dollar contracts for the University.
• Law Professor
Van taught the next generation of lawyers while serving as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Tennessee School of Law.
• Former Medical Researcher
Prior to becoming an attorney, Mr. Irion worked in the genetics and medical research fields both in the public and private sectors, including the University of California School of Medicine and University of Tennessee Research Foundation. He has co-authored several peer reviewed scientific research articles. (listed below).
• U.S. Military Veteran
Mr. Irion is proud to have served in the US Air Force as an Air Traffic Controller at the USAF, Little Rock Air Force Base.
• Volunteer Firefighter and EMT
For several years Mr. Irion served as a volunteer Firefighter and licensed Emergency Medical Technician (EMT).
• Former Congressional Candidate
In 2010 Van ran for Congress in the Republican primary for Tennessee’s 3rd Congressional District. During his campaign, Van was endorsed by Congressman Ron Paul. He was also endorsed by speech writers and other staff of the Reagan White House.
• Lead Counsel and Founder
For three years Van served as the Lead Counsel and Founder of Liberty Legal Foundation. The mission of Liberty Legal Foundation was to strengthen Constitutional protections against governmental abuses by challenging federal court precedents that had diminished the original intent of our Founding Fathers.
University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, Sacramento, CA
Juris Doctor, With Distinction, May 2005
Law Journal: The Transnational Lawyer
Dean’s Scholarship Recipient, 2002-2005
Dean’s Honor Roll, 2003, 2004 & 2005
Academic Achievement Award, 2004
Witkin Award – Top Class Ranking, Contracts, 2003
Witkin Award – Top Class Ranking, Biology, Law & Human Behavior, 2005
Witkin Award – Top Class Ranking, Community Property, 2005
Mock Trial Competition Finalist, 2003
University of California, Davis, California
Bachelor of Science, Biochemistry, 1995
State Bar of Tennessee
U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Tennessee
U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
State Bar of Tennessee
Knoxville Bar Association
Selected Scientific Research Publications Authored or Co-
Authored by Mr. Irion
• Non-viral gene delivery to the ventricles in rat brain: Initial evidence for distribution and expression in the CNS; Hecker JG, Hall LL, Irion VR.; Mol Ther. 2001 Mar;3(3):375-84.
• Advances in self-limited gene expression of protective intracellular proteins in-vivo in rat brain; Irion VR, Hecker JG; Anesthesia & Analgesia, 1998:86.
• Self-limited gene expression in vitro in neuronal cell cultures and in vivo in rat brain using mRNA/cationic lipid complexes; Irion VR, Hecker JG; Anesthesia & Analgesia, 1997:84.
• The fidelity of human telomerase; Kreiter M, Irion V, Ward J, Morin G.; Nucleic Acids Symp Ser. 1995;(33):137-9.
• The effect of carrier RNA on transfection efficiency; Third Annual Artificial Self-Assembling Systems For Gene Delivery Conference, November 1996.
• Hsp70 and Reporter Enzyme Expression in Rat Brain after Non-viral Delivery of mRNA and DNA to Lateral Ventricles; Hecker JG, Hall LL, Irion VR.; Society for Neuroscience Meeting, New Orleans, November, 2000.
• mRNA cationic lipid transfected expression of firefly luciferase in mammalian cells is enhanced by addition of tRNA; Giles J, Irion VR, Hecker JG; Western Anesthesia Residents Conference, Seattle, WA, April 17, 1999.
• Effect of cationic lipid ratio and carrier RNA on transfection efficiency; 3rd Annual Artificial Self-Assembling Systems for Gene Delivery Conference; Irion VR, Hecker JG; Cambridge Healthtech Institute, Newton Upper Falls, MA. November 17-18, 1996.
• Effects of electromagnetic fields on gene expression; Irion VR, Irion DN; Golden State Venture Capital Conference & Entrepreneur Expo, San Rafael, April 23-24, 2001.
Get out the vote!
Vote for Van Irion!!!
Blockbuster Exclusive: State of Tennessee: Grand Jury Foremen Are Not Jurors! by Post & Email’s Sharon Rondeau!
Tuesday, 26 November 2013
READ THE FULL REPORT AT- The Post & Email – http://www.thepostemail.com –
Blockbuster Exclusive: State of Tennessee: Grand Jury Foremen Are Not Jurors!
Posted By Sharon Rondeau On Tuesday, November 26, 2013 @ 10:04 AM
IN CONTRADICTION OF STATE LAW
by Sharon Rondeau
The office of the Tennessee Attorney General and Reporter claims that the grand jury foreman is a state employee, not a juror empaneled by state statutes
(Nov. 26, 2013) — The Post & Email can exclusively report that the Tennessee state attorney general’s office has stated on the record that the “foreperson” of all grand juries in Tennessee is IS NOT A JUROR as Tennessee state statutes require.
In December of last year, CDR Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III was convicted in the Monroe County, TN Criminal Court of “tampering with government records,” with Judge Walter C. Kurtz presiding.
Defense Attorney Van Irion submitted an appeal in the case of State of Tennessee v. Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, IIIprotesting CDR Fitzpatrick’s innocence. One of Irion’s points was that the grand jury foreman had over-served her legal term of one year. Tennessee Code Annotated (TCA) states that following their service on any jury in the state, jurors cannot be resummoned for a minimum of 24 months.
This past September, in his official capacity as Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Justice Division, Kyle Hixson responded to the Fitzpatrick appeal, writing a brief on the state’s behalf of which The Post & Email first came into possession last Thursday afternoon.
At the bottom of page 13 of his brief, Assistant Attorney General Hixson wrote:
“…the foreman of the grand jury is not ‘impaneled’ from the ‘summoned’ members of the ‘jury pool.’ See Tenn Code Ann. §§ 22-2-306, -307, and -310. The foreperson is ‘appoint[ed]’ by the trial court. Tenn. R. Crim. P. 6(g)(1). As such, section 314, by its terms, does not apply to the appointment process of the grand jury foreperson.”
The state’s entire argument can be read here: HIXSON BRIEF
Section 314 reads as follows:
“22-2-314. Limitation on jury service.
“A juror who has completed a jury service term shall not be summoned to serve another jury service term in any court of this state for a period of twenty-four (24) months following the last day of such service; however, the county legislative body of any county, may, by majority vote, extend the twenty-four-month period.”
Hixson clearly reports that grand jury forepersons do not come from the “jury pool,” are never “summoned” to jury duty, are never “impaneled” as a jurors, and never subject to state laws which deal with jurors and jury duty. Simply stated, Hixson affirms on behalf of the State of Tennessee that grand jury forepersons are never jurors.
However, Tennessee state law commands exactly the opposite: Tennessee statutes say that grand jury forepersons must always be jurors.
Tennessee state law, as tailored and refined by the Rules for Criminal Procedure, require that thirteen (13) jurors (or members) populate all state grand juries.
Hixson has now said, in clear terms in a statement against the state’s self-interest, that criminal court judges add a non-juror to the grand jury by their selection of the foreman. The 12 jurors plus one non-juror combination consequently leaves Tennessee grand juries one short of the lawfully-mandated requirement of thirteen (13) jurors. This has been and remains the case for decades.
Tennessee state law requires that all state residents, in the process of becoming jurors, must initially be randomly selected into the jury pool. From that pool, a smaller number of individuals are randomly selected to be issued summonses to report to the courtroom on a particular day, at which time jurors for the grand jury and trial juries are selected in but a third process of random selection.
In each of these three random selection rounds, the process used must be one that does not allow for the possibility of “human intervention.”
The Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference describes the grand jury as:
…a group of thirteen citizens chosen from the jury panel. One of these thirteen is the fore person and will preside over the grand jury.
Assistant Attorney General Hixson now reports that criminal court judges have always been permitted to install a handpicked non-juror foreman, that is, to “appoint” the foreman from, as Monroe County Court Clerk Martha M. “Marty” Cook has said, “from wherever they choose“ because the state laws that apply to jurors do not apply to non-jurors.
As readers of The Post & Email are already aware, Fitzpatrick’s challenges to the scope and operation of Tennessee grand juries arose upon his discovery in 2010 that the Monroe County Tennessee de facto grand jury foreman, Gary Pettway, had held that position since 1982, a period of twenty-eight (28) consecutive years. Moreover, there was no appointing order or evidence that Pettway had ever been duly sworn in.
Fitzpatrick placed Pettway under citizen’s arrest in April 2010. State law enforcement officials ignored Fitzpatrick’s complaint and arrested Fitzpatrick instead. The Monroe County grand jury then indicted Fitzpatrick for attempting to intimidate a juror, Gary Pettway.
Fitzpatrick has demonstrated that the grand juries and trial juries in Tennessee are unduly influenced by prosecutors, grand jury foremen, and court personnel and contaminated by jurors serving consecutive terms in violation of state law (TCA 22-2-314). In one case in Davidson County, a grand jury foreman chosen by a judge was discovered to be a convicted felon, which violates Tennessee statute and required the review of approximately 800 cases over which the illegally-serving foreman had presided.
Grand jury foremen in Monroe County are reportedly “picked from wherever” the judge “chooses” by means of an unknown vetting process. Throughout Tennessee, grand jury foremen have served for decades or multiple times with occasional breaks in service.
Tennessee Code Annotated provides no special selection process for the grand jury foreman.
Grand jury tampering and judicial misconduct have been reported to The Post & Email in Campbell County, Roane County, Sevier County, and Madison County. Crimes against District Attorney General R. Steven Bebb of the Tenth Judicial District have been alleged but dismissed by Tennessee Attorney General Robert E. Cooper, Jr., although members of the Tennessee General Assembly are working to remove Bebb from his post.
Now, for the first time ever, Kyle Hixson explains that (1) Gary Pettway was never a juror, resulting in (2) the law limiting jury service does not apply to grand jury forepersons such as Pettway, and (3) judicially “appointed” Tennessee residents are allowed to serve in a career position as a county employee called the “grand jury foreman.”
Tennessee Code Annotated (TCA) 40-12-206 is the only state statute which details the composition of every Tennessee state grand jury. The law commands that all grand juries be populated with thirteen (13) jurors (members) and up to five (5) alternates. The law does not provide for the judicial appointment of a “foreman” into a Tennessee grand jury.
The same law makes no distinction among the jurors (members). There is no distinction or separate-identity, non-juror “foreman.”
The process by which all jurors are to be selected is described as (1) Randomly populate the “jury pool,” (2) Randomly select potential jurors from the “jury pool,” (3) “Summon” the potential jurors to court for random selection into the grand and trial (petit) jurors for identified term dates, and (4) “Impanel” the grand juries and trial jurors.
Hixson, representing the state of Tennessee, publicly declared in his September 2013 appeals brief that, in Tennessee, grand jury foremen are not jurors.
Restating the state’s now first-time ever publicly pronounced policy position more clearly:
The grand jury foreman is not a juror.
A criminal court trial judge individually and personally selects, then specifically delegates (appoints, employs) grand jury foremen in Tennessee state.
The grand jury foreman does not come from a randomly-selected jury pool.
The grand jury foreman is not summoned to a courtroom to participate in the process of jury impaneling.
Tennessee state statutes that apply to jurors and jury duty do not apply to the grand jury foreman who is, rather, a paid Tennessee state employee.
Judicial appointment of a grand jury foreman who is a “non-juror, as Hixson described the office and process, is illegal under the Tennessee statutes.
The Post & Email asks if the State of Tennessee is committing the same crime as that which the U.S. Navy continues to perpetrate after more than 23 years in which an honest person is sacrificed and condemned for the sake of preserving a criminal enterprise in which a judge’s personal appointee masquerades as a member of the grand jury, unduly influencing that body and often casting the decisive vote to indict.
Editor’s Note: More articles on Tennessee grand jury foremen and the law will be forthcoming in the near future.
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URL to article: http://www.thepostemail.com/2013/11/26/blockbuster-exclusive-state-of-tennessee-grand-jury-foremen-are-not-jurors/
Wednesday, 28 November 2012
JAG HUNTER here:
So,six days before my scheduled 3 December 2012 trial, I sit here asking myself, wondering how many of the thirty bomb threats came from “P.J. FOGGY,” Mr. William L. Bryan (click here).
William Bryan, a.k.a. “P.J. Foggy,” pulled the same stunt in the days leading up to my Tuesday, 20 April 2010 court appearance.