Monday Open: SRHS Retirees taking the road show to Jackson, JPSO caught stomping defenseless teen on camera plus the Congroovancy loses one

Links, links and more links folks. Add you own in comments:

SRHS retirees turned protesters trying to save pension ~ Anita Lee

Hospital retirees meet today to plan a rally at the State Capitol ~ WLOX

AG opinions say Biloxi can’t sell naming rights to ballfield ~ Mary Perez

New Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office report: High school student Brady Becker a drunken aggressor who threw punch, tried to strangle deputy ~ Jim Mustian

Yep, sure looks like the kid was strangling that deputy while the deputy was beating his face in.

Supers seek answers in DWSD controversy ~ Dwayne Bremer

Sheriff probes DHS fraud claims ~ Dwayne Bremer

Finally, for all the rocket scientists in the media and legislature that think movie tax credits are actually a good idea I have this from Lee Zurik:

Finally I note the passing of attorney/blogger Tom Freeland of Oxford over the weekend. Tom’s contributions to the online scene here in Mississippi were immense. He was a talented writer whose ongoing work online will be missed.

“There is still nothing more palpable in the Faulkner landscape than the arrogance of privilege.” A Tom Freeland Assault and Trespassing Update.

Patsy Brumfield of the Daily Journal lived up to her twitter moniker @realnewsqueen yesterday with her gavel to gavel coverage of yesterday’s misdemeanor trial of the century here in Mississippi. Her rolling account of Freeland’s 5 hour trial was both rough around the edges and thorough beyond all expectations.  Today she followed that grand performance with an edited story that confirmed my suspicions it was them pesky text messages that doomed Team Freeland. It is another must read.  Through time we’ve sent several 3 figure clicks out to other websites and today Patsy Brumfield joins an elite list of journalists so honored by our readership with her rolling account that I linked yesterday. I’ll add she is a smart journalist for making sure the readers of the Daily Journal got the news they were thirsty for exceeding all expectations in the process. Kudos to Patsy.

Unfortunately for Mr Freeland’s victim Susan White, her ordeal will continue with news of Team Freeland’s appeal to circuit court. Hopefully she’ll take solace in the fact the entire Slabbed Nation stands behind her in her the quest for justice and will remain there with her each step of the way on this very difficult journey through the historically less than transparent judiciary in North Mississippi.

Finally we’ve made a few new friends covering this story from the northern end of Mississippi that have proven themselves loyal readers of this little project.  This story has captured the imagination of the legal community in 2 states so it is only right we highlight a second source of coverage on the Freeland trial in the Oxford Crime Report.  Tim’s account of the trial is also very insightful and he reports the most damning text message that didn’t fit with Freeland’s account of the events back in March: Continue reading ““There is still nothing more palpable in the Faulkner landscape than the arrogance of privilege.” A Tom Freeland Assault and Trespassing Update.”

Slabbed and Ashley mentioned in the same sentence. And as fate would have it only now that she's gone is the genius behind Nowdy's work here becoming evident.

When I checked stats and Jason’s post on American Zombie about our coverage of the goings on in Oxpatch and read the comments, I was truly humbled to see one of the commenters mentioning us deserving the Ashley Award. For those who are not schooled in the lore of the local blogging community the Ashley Award is named for Ashley Morris, the granddaddy of us all who lost his life in the spring of 2008. Creighton Bernette from Treme’s first season was based on him in large part and his blog still lives to this day. It is a heck of an honor just to be mentioned in the same sentence.

Since our early days I thought our natural readership traffic would be largely along the I-10 corridor as we’re culturally similar. My former partner in blog Nowdy hailed from central Mississippi and while she was hip to this area she was hipper to the goings on from Jackson north. And when the Dick Scruggs prosecution met the insurance battles down here we naturally didn’t take things and the story line being peddled in both the main stream press and the blogs at face value.  Nowdy well knew of the time-honored tradition of bare knuckle vendetta, Mississippi style. For me the fact that State Farm so well-integrated into the news cycle was plenty enough.  She was ridiculed and derided for some of her work but by God it has somehow manged to survive the test of time in part.

I mention all this because some of the ridicule came from Tom Freeland aka NMC. He was advocating in USA v Scruggs on behalf of Judge Lackey, his daddy’s former law partner who evidently once had an office in that “quaint Victorian-style Jackson Avenue office” that “has housed lawyers since 1905.” I think William Falkner took a crap in the hall bathroom there once too. And since I brung it up I’ll add we’ve always stipulated Team Freeland bleeds blue. Along those same lines he also had IRS leins and they all put their pants on one leg at a time. But he also blogs and we’re better off for it (when he isn’t grinding an axe against Dick Scruggs or helping State Farm rat fuck ordinary people down here whose only sin was having full insurance coverage and losing their house to Hurricane Katrina) as his blog is at times very good. In fact this last January I personally recommended it to Jason at AZ and made sure Tom was aware if American Zombie. After all just because we fussed some doesn’t mean the material is crap. Bloggers are a very competitive bunch after all. Continue reading “Slabbed and Ashley mentioned in the same sentence. And as fate would have it only now that she's gone is the genius behind Nowdy's work here becoming evident.”

Team Freeland would like a word: Chooses Patsy Brumfield to respond to the Oxford allegations.

Team Freeland via the Missus has finally publically engaged the allegations against Hubby Tommy choosing Patsy Brumfield at the Daily Journal to tell their story.

There is not much new ground broken save the fact Hendry’s rep as a gifted basher has evidently spread statewide. I suspect Belle’s last missive on the Doc Cassandra also played a part in Team Freeland’s decision to tackle their Oxford woes in a more public fashion.

Continue reading “Team Freeland would like a word: Chooses Patsy Brumfield to respond to the Oxford allegations.”

Today's rapid fire segment is sponsored by Bellesouth and Blue Moon….

A couple of days ago we welcomed a new commenter on an older post that brought word of a Jimmy Gates story in the Jackson Clarion Ledger that is related to our and Bellesouth’s  coverage of the arrest of Oxford lawyer/blogger Tom Freeland. Hatfield later was kind enough to share the hyperlink to Jimmy’s story. The short version is Team Freeland has done some medicare/medicare fraud criminal defense work winning a notable trial last year in Hattiesburg.  A short while ago they lost a similar case in Jackson and the Doc in question in that case, Cassandra Faye Thomas is staring at a very long stretch of time in the pokey now convicted for fleecing Medicaid/Medicare to the tune of $6.9MM.

A top shelf criminal defense in complex white-collar litigation does not come cheap folks and bet Doc Cassandra had to dig very deep to hire Team Freeland.  I’ll be honest and say my initial reaction was to chalk this one up to a desperate person doing anything and everything they could to avoid the pen but then I checked in with Bellesouth and my reaction to her post was HOLY CRAP! There may be a sliver of hope for Doc after all.

Next up is Hizzhonner Half Moon after I received an email and one comment on the veracity of Supasleth’s bombshell comment yesterday evening regarding Henry Mouton’s cooperation with Team Letten that included serving up Ann Duplesiss and Rene Gill Pratt. Duplesiss is a key member of Team Half-Moon and Gill Pratt is facing retrial on Dollar Bill Jefferson related corruption charges as I write this.  Jason was kind enough to stop by and help us close the circle on Duplesiss.  So the question is whether the assertion true or not.  We have no way of knowing for sure but our search for the truth has us on a path leading us back to the tip.  For our newer readers I’ll add the Sleuth has been a fairly reliable commenter here over time and Jason is certainly no slouch in that department either. Continue reading “Today's rapid fire segment is sponsored by Bellesouth and Blue Moon….”

I think we need some perspective on the latest Robert Simon stay.

This morning we got a few clicks from comments on the Jackson Clarion Ledger story I linked yesterday on Slabbed concerning the last minute stay of execution granted Robert Simon Jr.  In that post I termed some of the C-L comments ignorant.  That would include the poster there linking us.

In a way, the stay granted Simon may indicate there is a glimmer of hope that the court’s lousy reputation nationwide is being mended. In fact a man that was railroaded just over a decade ago has a column in our archives that bears repeating now:

Being a federal court of appeals judge has become almost a prerequisite to ascending up to the Supreme Court. Every present judge on the Court was elevated from the federal court of appeals system. So one would think the three women on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, all from either Louisiana or Texas, would have been given a perusal review. No way, say the close court watchers. Their qualifications or lack thereof, speak for themselves.

The chief judge is one Edith Jones, who received international notoriety a few years back when she ruled that a fellow named Calvin Burdine, convicted of murder and sentenced to death row, received a fair trial even though his court appointed lawyer slept through a good bit of the trial. A sleeping attorney didn’t’ seem to bother Jones, who wrote in upholding the conviction that “we cannot determine whether the defense counsel slept during a critical stage of Burdine’s trial.” So, according to Jones, it’s OK to nap a bit during a trial if you are representing a defendant who could be (and in this case was) given the death penalty. Just pick and choose when you doze off.

Her colleague on the Fifth Circuit, Judge Priscilla Owen, also has a colorful and controversial list of questionable decisions. Times Picayune columnist James Gill outlined a litany of dubious rulings in a recent column, when he cited one example of Owens “setting on a case so long that a quadriplegic kid’s respirator failed before he could collect a dime of the $30 million awarded by a jury against Ford Motor Co. several years earlier.” Former US Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, once a colleague of Owens on the Texas Supreme Court, described one of her opinions in a parental consent case as “an unconscionable act of judicial activism.” Continue reading “I think we need some perspective on the latest Robert Simon stay.”

Never met a murderer or an insurance company he failed to like…..

I wrote something along those lines long ago to describe Judge Helen “Ginger” Berrigan, a lady who has love in her heart for murderers and insurance companies that sometimes has a recusal problem. Overall she is a crappy judge because she evidently fails to understand that the concept of justice extends equally to civil torts and not to only matters involving someone’s liberty or in the case of certain murderers their very lives.

Naturally I chuckled when I saw NMC enrolled pro bono on behalf of murderer Robert Simon, winning him a stay of execution in the process.  As a point of disclosure I revealed here on Slabbed a while back that I am generally against the death penalty citing the execution of the innocent as my biggest reason. But there are exceptions in generally and I cited confessed cold-blooded murderer Isaiah Doyle as one of them.  I’m thinking Robert Simon Jr would be another.  This from the Jackson Clarion Ledger story “Heinous crime still haunts community”:

For many people in this rural farming community, Feb. 2, 1990, will always be remembered as the day Quitman County was rocked with a crime of unspeakable horror – the cold-blooded murder of a well-known farm family. Continue reading “Never met a murderer or an insurance company he failed to like…..”

On Deck: Municipal Court day in Oxford

My money is that the assault and trespassing case against Oxford lawyer Tom Freeland aka NMC will be continued tomorrow but just in case I have someone scheduled to go get us the low down.  I suspect my person will not be the only interested observer there. That said I think Mr Freeland has one problem in that if he did indeed have that fight with his wife at City Grocery, why the heck did he follow the wife’s friend to the UM campus and then home. Seems to me if he admits to peeling off from his wife after their public spat then he has some more ‘splaing to do and no amount of that may help given the bad connotations.

For my part I’m curious to see how it will be handled.

In other news NMC has posted on a suit Meg McAllister has filed against Dickie “Scruggs over the Rigsby Sisters”. This suit is a sideshow in the larger drama that has been unfolding for over a year folks and I’ve had a ringside seat almost the whole time.  When the time is right we’ll be exploring Nutt and McAllister along with Nutt’s trusty CPA Bill Jones. Stay tuned.

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Oxford lawyer/blogger Tom Freeland arrested for Trespassing and Simple Assault (Updated/Revised)

Short and sweet folks.  Last night I was emailed an arrest report  involving Oxford Lawyer/Blogger Tom Freeland.  I contacted Mr Freeland who disputed the allegations and declined further comment. The sworn complaint, which represents one side of a legal dispute, is salacious in its detail:

Once inside, Ms White stated that Mr Freeland grabbed and pulled on her hair and kissed her several times. Ms White stated he began telling her “You know you want this as much as I do.” Ms. White stated that he then ripped her blouse off and then stood up and stepped back for a few steps….. Continue reading “Oxford lawyer/blogger Tom Freeland arrested for Trespassing and Simple Assault (Updated/Revised)”

Carothers files rebuttal to Moultrie's response and makes it a ballgame!

If law is a sport, welcome to the Super Bowl with Freeland v Rideout shooting word-filled cannons down field like they were Manning and Farve.

Rideout held Team Moultie scoreless in the first quarter and Moultie came back in the second.

The score was even at the half.

While the “devil is in the details,” Carothers and Moultrie apparently agree that the correct statement of the test to be applied by the court is that quoted by Carothers in its original Memo and likewise quoted in full by Moultrie in his Memo. As stated by the Court in United States v. Ball:

[I]n order for the court to authorize Rule 17(c) subpoena, the moving party must be able to describe specific documents, or, at least specific kinds of documents. [cit.] Moreover, the moving party must specify why the materials are wanted, what information is contained in the documents, and why those documents would be relevant and admissible at trial. (citations omitted). Without detailed information on the requested documents, a court is only left ‘to speculate as to the specific nature of their contents and relevance.’ (citing United States v. Arditti, 955 F2d 331, 346 (5th Cir. 1992) (emphasis added)

With the butt-kicking rebuttal filed today, Rideout has pulled Team Carothers so far ahead in the third, it’s going to be hard for Moultrie to catch up. Continue reading “Carothers files rebuttal to Moultrie's response and makes it a ballgame!”