National FBI Embarrassment Paralleled in Local Corruption

I’m not a rocket scientist nor am I a legal scholar, but I am educated; I can read plain English and comprehend the meaning of texts, with a good grasp on the concepts of law due to my own self education via legal professionals and criminologists. It does not take a person with a law degree to recognize the inequities of justice in a corrupt system.
Basic comparison of situations that are essentially the same and the extremely contradictory outcomes depending on status of the person affected within the community.

For almost 2 years, the politics at a national level have escalated (or sank, may be more apt) to a level never seen before. At the core of the issues is the FBI. The FBI is an agency that has been historically touted as the most elite law enforcement agency in the world. The work that agency has done is impressive and professional at times. The FBI set the standards for law enforcement agencies, as well as improving how law enforcement functions should be best achieved. Recently, that image was tarnished. A few bad apples spoiled the bunch.

The law enforcement failures (FBI) seen at the federal level should cause all of us to take pause. FBI, among other federal entities has oversight from Congress, the media and others, with a voice that resonates in the public–not just nationally, but globally. Still, the system failed, and bad people were able to do unprecedentedly bad things that the public has never been able to see before. Individuals that swore an oath to avoid personal bias while applying the law to and for the citizens who placed trust in their morality, and overall stewardship of the greater good and who are trusted to make decisions beyond the scope of their duty. These trusted, elite few made a personal choice on what was best for everyone and who should answer for law violations. These trusted, elite few are responsible for enforcing the law, based on an obligation to the public to decide on what they perceived should occur in the best interest of everyone.

This agency, the FBI, is not representative of law enforcement at all anymore. They take advantage of the access they have to the “big stick”, being abuse of their trusted power to ruin people by bearing false witness, misrepresentation of the facts and obfuscating the facts. No one would ever want to be on the wrong side of such a corrupt organization, nor would we wish it on our worst enemy.  It is unfair and impossible to combat unless there is unlimited flow of cash or political power to fight to fight such a thing. This is precisely what is taking place in Escambia County right now!

There have been stories/reports about Sir David and his misuse of money that was not his to spend, that only benefited him personally and politically. Sir David, knowing he is above the reach of Bill Eddins, ignored state laws and spent what he wanted. Sir David acted with reckless brazen thumbing his defiance because of his elected position or maybe because he was an employee for Eddins before their elevation to elected office. Regardless, he clearly acted as if he had no reason to worry about violating the law. His administration routinely conducts investigations that are questionable that target citizens and ECSO employees. Many situations should petrify people who could be in the crosshairs of political vendetta to wonder why Sir David is allowed be a criminal. He is aware that to be held accountable someone in the States Attorney’s Office would have be willing to be accountable AND willing to hold him accountable.

Time and again, Eddins has not even pretended he would fight any sort of political corruption. He routinely takes the side of an official, often without looking at evidence against such an official or having facts to support his position. It is impossible to trust Eddins when his conduct has been so questionable. Individuals have suffered long arduous trials that take thousands of dollars to present and even more to defend. An average citizen could never keep up with what can be spent by Eddins. Yet, this is where a citizen in this county is expected to turn when reporting an issue with an official. It could be argued that the message is, “as long as you don’t rock the boat, we won’t destroy you.”

State Attorney:Judge throws out case against Wild Greg’s owner

by Ly’Nita Carter

Aug, 16, 2018

The owner of Wild Greg’s Saloon in downtown Pensacola is acquitted Thursday, according to the State Attorney’s Office.

Greg Urban was arrested and charged in May with resisting an officer without violence, a report states.

The charges stem from an incident in February. Pensacola Police were conducting an investigation at the saloon.

According to a report, authorities claimed Urban resisted arrest or interfered with an officer performing his course of duties.

On Thursday, an Escambia County Judge ruled there was not enough evidence to move forward.

A recent case involving a local business owner is probably one of the best examples of what is being described. Greg Urban was arrested for resisting arrest without violence. The officer testifying stated that Urban had lied during an investigation that did not involve Urban as a suspect. The officer espoused the quote he claimed Urban said that prompted the arrest. Since there was a video of the dialogue, it was presented a video to the judge in court following the officer’s account account under oath. The video revealed Urban did not make the quote as stated by the officer. The defense attorney pointed this out and the officer continued to misquote what Urban had stated. Fortunately, the judge was paying attention and the case ended with a Judge Ordered Acquittal. This should be a gross embarrassment to the States Attorney Office and the Pensacola Police Department. They conspired to take a case to a jury trial that they should have known had no basis for even probable cause. Yet there will never be in public acknowledgement of such a gross mistake. These folks forced Urban to court and forced him to spend money for counsel and lose wages during the process. See the “big stick” mentality at work?

Citizens must force change for this behavior to end. Get these stories out into the public and support those already courageous enough to have their story out. This kind of irresponsible, corrupted behavior can only be stopped through exposing the corruption and put this improper behavior in the spotlight. No one can take these officials at their word. Question the issues that seem wrong. Make the officials in the office paid for by taxpayers be held accountable. Do not allow them to treat anyone as if they are irrelevant. Turning a blind eye to even one person being treated like Urban increases the odds that anyone could be the next target.

Don’t forget, taxpayers are the reason they have a job!

    

Thankfulness & Appreciation Series- Part 2

Sometimes the posts just write themselves. Thank God for that. Thank God for the Free Speech that would otherwise not be afforded to me in any other country. Free Speech Sir David doesn’t want to hear but that just delineates the need for such. If someone locally, won’t say it, I will. If not me then who? If not now, then when?

There were 2 different articles in the Mullet Wrapper this weekend that basically hit on the same points. The first is by my fave writer, Emma Kennedy, “Reopened death row, juvenile justice cases strain system” & the second, by my other fave writer at the Mullet Wrapper, Kevin Robinson, “Escambia County leads state in charging juveniles as adults”. 

To summarize the two issues, in 2012, the Supreme Court ruled in Miller v. Alabama, that mandatory sentences of life without parole for children under the age of 18 are unconstitutional. The weight of this decision is financially straining Bill Eddins’s office because………

First thing that comes to mind is that office has been pushing juveniles into adult sentences at a far higher rate than the rest of the state, which is pointed out in the second article, by Robinson. Scott McCoy of the Southern Poverty Law Center, (SPLC) points out that these kids are being pushed into the adult system only to get probation. If the crimes are not severe enough to actually result in jail time, why shouldn’t they stay in the juvenile justice system which would allow them the chance to not be labeled within the adult system? This seems to be a case of not liking that option because it isn’t seen as punitive enough (in NW FL), for Mr. Eddins or at least his perception of what his constituents wants?

Over the last few weeks, I have become more acquainted with what passes for “a case” by the State Attorney’s office. Ron Clark Ball, John Powell, Pat Gonzalez, Gary Sumner were just a few who have been escorted in front of cameras and called criminals but when the evidence is laid to bear…..our court system (and by extension the judiciary that allows them to play “law”) were the through-backs on the short bus in law school.

What are you thinking, Bill Eddins, when you allow a personal vendetta of one of the legal elite firms to rope you into a RICO case, where there is perjured testimony, charges galore that end up being dropped because they are just that charges…not actual crimes committed. The bill on that case will cost the taxpayers millions. What about the letting whomever, assist the Assistant State Attorneys in the grand jury room, when Fla Statutes say they must have a J.D. after their name? Greg Marcille surely knows that. What about letting a Sheriff shake GRAND JURORS hands telling them, “I’ve done my job; now it’s time for you to do yours”? This is a directive to people personally to indict. How many people have been deprived a fair trial for that. Screwing with Grand Juries , YEAR AFTER YEAR, seems to me that will cost the taxpayers BILLIONS WITH A “B”.

This is a case where people who are in charge shouldn’t be. Their decisions result in inequities on the people they were sworn to represent and protect. I am talking about CRIMES OF MORALITY THAT LET THE REAL CRIMINALS OUT WHILE PUTTING THE INNOCENT IN JAIL.

Please, as always, don’t just take my word for this. Go to Flcourts.gov, or FDLE.gov. The statistics of what is actually going on. The problem is these men, Eddins, Morgan are stewards of the county and they don’t play fair. Consequently, in the appellate stage, other courts look at their non-sense and kicks back the badly handled cases. That is an error that is coming to fruition while these men are still in office. Typically, this sort of thing hits the following administration or comes back to haunt the subsequent terms of politicians; however, the glut for power has kept them in office long enough to see the spoils of their injustices.

It is a no-brainer that if you have to pay for a job to be done and then redone because of it was inadequate, it costs more money. Doing the job twice due to shortcuts like not having the properly composed grand jury, pushing kids into an adult system for no reason other than perceived political capital, letting other officials subject court cases to retrial for inappropriate contact, all these things COST THE TAXPAYERS MONEY & on top of it, having to doing out punitive damages for ruining people’s lives COSTS EVEN MORE.

According to the NCJRS (National Criminal Justice Reference Service),

Corruption can arise in virtually any area of local government activity, and will leave distinct traces according to the area -law enforcement, land-use regulation, purchasing, or tax assessment. It is possible to put together a diagnostic check list that will indicate possible corruption in a particular area. 

When corruption in government is suspected, there is a checklist of things people should look for. Some of those are:

  1. Have there been any cases tried in recent history of corruption? Statistically, there are going to be people involved in the moving parts of government trying to make money by cutting corners. Lack of this implies there are things not being caught which indicates incompetence or there are things overlooked indicating bigger corruption. Either way, the fact is something has to change for the county to retain its liquidity.
  2. Is there a high turnover in agency personnel? This indicates a systemic internal problem that cost taxpayers money and allows for corruption to flourish in the internal dissension.
  3. Are public positions filled when there is no need for the job, as hiring a
  4. swimming instructor for a park with no pool? This indicates the fulfilling of political favors for off the book gains ie corruption.
  5. Are those arrested for narcotics and gambling mostly street-level people
  6. rather than higher ups? This indicates incompetence in not investigating about the street-level soldiers in a more organized criminal enterprise.
  7. Is there an effective independent investigative agency to hear complaints of official misconduct? This is a check and balance approach to keep everybody honest.

The NCJRS (National Criminal Justice Reference Service) goes on to say:

“Some people who participate in corruption make no attempt to hide their activities, either believing that what they are doing is perfectly acceptable or expecting that no one will be watching. In most cases, however, participants will attempt to cover their tracks, both by making payoffs secretly and by attempting to provide a legitimate cover for their decisions. Where this is true, uncovering corruption problems can be difficult. Existing nvestigative bodies, such as the police and the prosecutors’ offices, are the obvious starting point because they can use surveillance techniques, subpoena powers, and the like, and can grant immunity to uncover evidence of specific crimes. Elected officials and agency heads who have daily contact with first-line supervisors or middle-level management are likely to have a fairly good idea of where the soft spots are, although they may be protected from below from any knowledge of specific corrupt acts or practices. Those who deal with local government from the outside – lawyers representing developers, contractors seeking building permits, salesmen seeking orders, or companies seeking contracts -will have certain knowledge of specific acts of corruption. Some will have little interest in exposing the acts that they profit from while others will be eager to see an immediate end to corruption (although they may be reluctant to aid in a suppression effort that entails personal risk). Newspaper, wire service, and television reporters may have more knowledge of corrupt acts than is revealed in their news reports, but may be reluctant to reveal it for fear of cutting themselves off from sources of other news. Outside of specifically chartered investigative bodies, the least reluctant sources of information about acts of corruption are official records.


” The desire to be respected by the public, so that being a politician or civil servant can be considered an honorable career, and election, appointment, or employment in government can be considered evidence of high personal standards of conduct. (They display:)• Recognition that corruption has a high social as well as monetary cost, and that even though the public may not seem to care in situations where corruption exists, and may continue to vote··in administrations that are either dirty or too stupid to be believed, the social cost is still being paid. When corruption and the costs of corruption finally become unacceptable, the result is likely to be personal as well as civic peril.• The awareness that there are standards of ethical conduct that can be agreed on, and principles of ethical action that can be applied, so that an employee or official can have confidence that he/she is acting ethically and need not be at the mercy of a superior’s whim or an investigative reporter’s slow news day. The most important ingredient of a (government leadership) management environment that is hostile to corruption is a strong and principled leadership. Without that, formalized guidelines for ethical behavior will be of little use. The next ingredient is credibility, which rests not only on sending clear messages that reinforce one another but also on keeping it all open and public”

Bottom line: Is this present in Escambia County? The articles in the PNJ tell the story….NO!