Lee Tyree Letter to PBA Members

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The unedited letter to the PBA members from Lee Tyree.
Greetings NWFPBA family,
   As many of you have been made aware there will be a change to the way the PBA will be handling the representation of our members who are facing discipline at the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office. I received notice of this change after some discussion with our General Council Stephanie Webster and our Executive Director Matt Puckett. The catalyst was the recent handing of a 112 violation for our Chapter Senior Vice President Tama Barber. This violation was a difference of legal right to communicate with council during an I.A. as it is viewed by the Sheriff’s Administration and the PBA. Both the PBA and the Sheriff’s Office have written to the Attorney General’s Office and both are awaiting a ruling.
   The initial letter from the PBA about this change was addressed directly to me from Matt Puckett. I did not release this letter to membership, the media, the public or even my board as a whole (although many of the upper board members knew what was going on). I’ve been asked why and I have told some directly when asked, I also explained the situation at the last General Membership meeting, but until now I’ve not released a statement as to why.
   There are several reasons why I didn’t put this letter out, which of course was all for not, since it eventually made its way to the public. First, I didn’t feel like a letter which was derogatory to the administration is one that I should be putting out to the public at this time and place. I’m of the opinion that this agency, just like many agencies has its share of dirty laundry, but it is the place that I have worked for the past 22 years, the same place that both my mom and dad worked and retired from and I hate seeing our department disparaged. In recent months we as an agency have had our image tarnished in the public. You only have to think of the Manning civil case which have been making the rounds on media, the case involving Zaid or the 2 cases involving former crime scene techs from our department. I didn’t want the letter to add to our ever evolving negative image.
   There is also a bit of embarrassment that came with the letter. I’ve been representing members for over 15 years and feel that the past 4 years as President, our Chapter has done a tremendous job not only in making our members better protected, but also to improving our contract and our salaries. Although Matt Puckett says in the letter that this is no reflection on the service that the Chapter Board and I provide the members, it still stings that an announcement of this type was needed at all. While I support the letter and know that it demonstrates the amount of displeasure the PBA feels over the situation involving VP Barber, I also have an opinion having worked as a rep for employees that this type of approach could create a bigger issue for some members who have discipline issues of a minor nature, where the bringing in of an attorney could make the situation more pronounced than it might need to be.
   Finally, while discipline is a big part of what I deal with as President, I also need a working relationship with the administration in order to work through all types of Union situations. I need to have an open line of communication, in order to assist our members with situations that pop up all the time. This time of the year, I get many questions about promotional exam eligibility, questions about the Chapters position on interpretation of situations that are not clear in policy and even questions about simple stuff such as detachments for training and such. For all of these reasons, I felt that the letter from Tallahassee to me would be best served as a simple notification from myself to the Administration to notify them of why all of the sudden lawyers would be showing up for all discipline matters. I let all of my reps know that lawyers would handling the discipline issues until told otherwise and to have all requests go through me so I could coordinate with Tallahassee.
   Do I agree with the PBA on their assessment of the 112 violation, yes, I have always said and will continue to say, what use is a rep or attorney in an I.A. if you cannot consult with them during the interview. My hope is that we will soon have an opinion which will put our agency I. A.’s back to normal. Should the AG’s office come back against us, then we will adjust and continue on assisting our members as best we can.
   If you have any questions please feel free to contact me and ask away!
Lee Tyree
Northwest Chapter President
Florida PBA
Can’t make this shit up! Tyree thinks he can decide what is a public record and what is appropriate to tell the members that pay dues to have men like him represent them. The letter was written to him to deliver to Haines and for him to pass the message to everyone accordingly. He was too chicken to do that.
With his intellect, he should be chief deputy in no time.
lee supergenius

Sheriff Morgan Makes False Accusations Against PBA

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Sheriff Morgan,

I feel compelled to respond to your letter to Matt Puckett of the PBA. You accuse the PBA of leaking the letter sent to Lee Tyree, stripping him of his PBA obligations due to Haines’s tyrannical handling of deputies’ rights.

I know you are aware I posted that same letter on Facebook a couple of days ago and did a blog post on my blog, ConjuringJusticeBlog.com, yesterday.

Make no mistake: your administration through a NUMBER of sources leaked that document to me, not anyone in the PBA, although I called PBA first after I heard about it. However, my voicemail to Ianna Durning was not returned. Haines’s attempt to hide the letter in his own IA investigation was a terribly misguided thing to do. Everyone aware of that was appalled and reached out to sources to leak it to me.  You have more people in your administration leaking information than ever before. Why do you think that is? Don’t bother with headhunting in this case. There were so many people who contacted me, you would literally have only the handful of people who did not want this left out. I have more supporters than you do, at least in terms of people you supposedly oversee.

As for airing your ex employees’ dirty laundry, I hope Bain Custer sues you for defamation.  You used county resources to do a DNA test of fluids found in his office to prove he had sex on duty. The problem is, the male DNA found was not Bain’s. Was it another sexual deviant in your admin? That expensive test the taxpayers footed the bill for backfired on you. It only reveals the more serious problems of in your agency with you and Haines turning a blind eye to favored employees while you conduct witch hunts for those you don’t. The favored ones are a smaller group every day.

Your prevarication regarding lawsuits is being observed by many. You were not honest in asserting that all cases were dismissed or abandoned, not settled. Anita Hemphill and Jeff Van Camp settled their lawsuits with you, just to name a few. And the ongoing cases include, Laura Montoya, Philip Nix, Mindy Pare, Adam Narvaez and Tama Barber and hopefully Bain Custer soon. And this is not an all-inclusive list. I believe there are more, but you would have to ask your counsel, who is paid for by the people. They have an accurate count I’m sure.

Your rush to judgment on how the PBA letter got out is not surprising. It is much like your impulsive press conference asserting you don’t remember ever meeting Leah Manning, or your rush to think there was no Billy Boyette was in woods next to the vehicle he left abandoned, when, in fact, he was; that poor decision cost another life. All these poor decisions from the number one law enforcement officer in the county. Is there any wonder the people who call you boss, are reaching out to anyone who will listen asking for intervention?

But to be clear, this is me accepting responsibility for leaking this letter that I RECEIVED FROM YOUR OFFICE. You may want to apologize to the PBA.

Sincerely,

Jimmie Lee Staley,

aka “The Blogger who doesn’t deserve airtime”

 

Chief Deputy Haines Hiding Public Records from Deputies

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On 8-13-2019, I received a notice from the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office concerning a public record request made. The request was for a letter prepared by the Florida Police Benevolent Association Inc. The letter details the change in procedure for employees being investigated or disciplined by the ECSO, taking the point of contact person out of the agency and replacing them with a PBA attorney. This is a drastic move but a positive one for deputies, if they know about it. The letter calls out Eric Haines & the IA investigators for multiple complaints of “intimidation and blatant violations of LEO bill of rights”.

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The letter is addressed to Lee Tyree. Tyree is the President for the local chapter of PBA. He is the only paid board member for the Northwest Florida PBA. Tyree receives a paycheck that is funded by the members of the PBA. The dues the members pay is to ensure that they are protected from improper employment practices. The members are paying to have their careers protected from corrupt leadership. They pay and trust that Lee Tyree will take the proper steps to protect them if needed. The members should be severely disappointed with what they have received from Tyree, while the PBA asserts his ineffectiveness to do his job as being in fear of retaliation, from people on the inside, the ineptness of Tyree is more about keeping favor with Haines, not avoiding retaliation, which is a different motivation altogether

After receiving this letter Tyree was instructed to hand deliver it to Haines. When Tyree provided Haines a copy of the letter, Haines, for obvious reasons, did not want the letter to be a public record. Honestly it is not a letter that belongs to Haines nor is it his call to determine what is a public record. The letter is addressed to the President of PBA, Lee Tyree. However, if Lee Tyree allows Haines to dictate his actions and tells him it is now part of an ongoing Internal Affairs investigation into Haines. Yes, Haines is overseeing his own IA investigation.  But without any balking, Tyree accepts this direction and without hesitation allows Haines to hide the letter from the PBA membership and public.

Every member of this chapter of the PBA should file a complaint against Tyree with the sender of this letter. Tyree has allowed countless employees to be mistreated and disciplined by Haines, knowing violations of employee rights were occurring.  Tyree even helped assist Haines by talking employees into resigning convincing them there is no other options. Tyree was seldom concerned enough to put up a strong defense for employees being harmed by Haines.

Now that we have seen the letter, we know it doesn’t relate to any investigation. There is not a true reason to refuse a public record request because of confidential status. In fact, it is an informative document advising the President of  this chapter of the PBA that a process that has been in place for over 25 years will change. A process for handling investigations and discipline will change because of improper conduct of “upper management” specifically Eric Haines and Internal Affairs investigators. This was a letter written to Tyree so he could inform the membership that PBA was taking action to protect them.

Unfortunately, but predictably, Tyree went the course of conspiring to hide the letter in a bogus Internal Investigation. Tyree is most concerned with being promoted apparently. He jumped at the chance to please Haines even though he was derelict in the performance of the duties he has been paid to perform as PBA President. He did nothing to inform the membership or post the letter for consumption by the membership. Tyree is the person responsible for protecting employees but instead assisted with committing law violations by concealing a public record. Why?

All PBA members should demand an explanation from Tyree and try to determine exactly how much he has kept hidden from the membership. A review of his conduct should be completed to determine if he should return funds received because of  shirking his required duties. In fact, it appears Tyree was more concerned with personal gain and has provided little service to members of the union. His recent contract negotiation left PBA with a shell of a contract and even less job protection. Seems more appropriate for Haines to be paying Tyree and not the membership of PBA for this service of undercutting deputies’ rights.

As far as Public Record request are concerned this is an old issue with Haines. He routinely makes attempts to delay or avoid Public Records requests. Haines should be held accountable for his conduct with this issue as well as the issues brought up by PBA. The fact that the ECSO would consider avoiding public record laws is a major concern. Why is that? What could they be hiding?
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Here are a couple of public records requests that have been difficult to obtain. Maybe some of the readers could attempt to obtain some records. If anyone is willing, go to this link  & please find out for yourselves how certain subjects really upset the ECSO leadership. You probably will not be successful, but you will get a first-person view of corruption at work. Here is the standard template. Copy and paste any all of the requests.

 

In Accordance with FSS Ch 119 I request the following record:

  1. Monthly total of off duty fee collected from extra duty employment
  2. Any document indicating deposit, expenditure, or disbursement of funds collected from off duty

 

 

In Accordance with FSS Ch 119 I request the following record:

  1. Any investigation relating to any employee investigated for improper use of SSN
  2. Any employee investigated for committing fraud by stealing identity of a deceased person
  3. Investigation completed by Capt. Ray Briggs on the listed issues.
  4. Any recorded interviews of the subject of the investigation
  5. Crime stoppers tip that notified the ECSO of employee not being a legal citizen

 

In Accordance with FSS Ch 119 I request the following record:

  1. All training records documenting the training Steve Cappas has received concerning evidence handling.
  2. All training Steve Cappas has received making him qualified to examine electronic evidence

In Accordance with FSS Ch 119 I request the following record:

  1. Any internal communications, emails relating to & from David Morgan or any public information officers from 7/9/2009-7/15/2009 (Billings case)
  2. Any internal communication relating to server failure for the above time frame

In Accordance with FSS Ch 119 I request the following record:

  1. All Gulf Coast Crimestoppers payouts for any given year.

In Accordance with FSS Ch 119 I request the following record:

  1. Evidence logs showing chain of custody of all evidence in reference to the Manning case.
  2. All internal correspondence that mentions the name “Jimmie Staley” or “Conjuring Justice”

If anyone gets this information, please share. You will likely be told that the record doesn’t exist or there was never an investigation. Just because they say it doesn’t mean that it is true. A good rule to follow is to verify that the record exists from someone inside the agency. This is my rule of thumb but the powers that be inside the agency haven’t  seemed to figure this out yet.