Tuesday Roundup: “We were robbed by the system”

There are four weeks of the year I do not have time for much more than the day job. This is one of those weeks so here is what I read this morning as I make my way out the door:

Former employees speak out about class-action lawsuit against Singing River Health System ~ Patrice Clark

WLOX.com – The News for South Mississippi

Former state senator Tommy Robertson charged with embezzlement ~ Michelle Lady

Good thing the JPSO handled the case of Mitch Landrieu’s stolen Jeep or it would’ve been chop shopped:

Crime reaches mayor’s doorstep: Vehicle stolen from Mitch Landrieu’s house recovered ~ Ken Daley

There are other stories out there concerning Mrs. Benson’s past that I won’t go into but there is also a public record as today’s New Orleans Advocate explores:

As Gayle Benson faces vetting by NFL, NBA, past lawsuits may raise questions ~ Ramon Antonio Vargas

Finally:

Audit suggests St. Bernard civic center head helped herself to $60K in public funds ~ Richard Thompson

25 thoughts on “Tuesday Roundup: “We were robbed by the system””

  1. Its bout time the entire multitude of financially raped victims seriously talk Class Action as da’ SRHS University has been closed, da’ sadistic Professors are out on Spring break or retired, da’ Principals screwed the Class of 2014-2015 out of earned rewards and the Board of Education overseeing this whole financial orgy even had dere relatives screwing da’ public taxpayers in ways unknown to mankind.

    So Class of 2014-15 sue da’ crap out of every person who professed or had any inkling to do wit’ this cruel fraud perpetrated on working people all the while they were secretly feathering their nests and those of their relatives.

    Meanwhile Class, as yo’ Class project yo’ need to stay in da’ Light and picket their neighborhood homes and their executive meeting places until yo’ drive da’ ” dirty rats” into hiding in dere Dark rat whor-holes.

    Hat-tip to James Cagney fo’ da’ “dirty rats” line.

    1. Well, there is no “Class Action” in Mississippi. Not to go too far down the legal rabbit hole, but you can, generally, “combine” claims by having a single trial on liability from a common set of facts and separate findings of amounts to each plaintiff if they prevail.

      That said, since I don’t where else to put this, if I were a reporter-type, I might look into the whole Psycamore – Roger Applewhite mess in Ocean Springs (as far I know, Applewhite is, at least in this case, the “victim,” not a player). Where it might get interesting is that good ol’ Dogan & Wilkinson is the city’s attorney and it appears that a subset of Jackson County taxpayers are going to get another screwing. Robert Wilkinson and John Edwards seem to get all the mentions in the press, but Amy St. Pe was with them (and presumably getting paid, too) on the Supreme Court pourout. For anyone interested, a good place to start is the latest story on gulflive dot com: “Ocean Springs Mayor Connie Moran releases statement on Applewhite suit settlement offer.” One interesting comment from Moran’s statement: “The City is not even sure if such a claim exists…” Well, shucks, you’re paying for such a high-steppin’ lawyer and “The City” is “not even sure” about the legal maneuvering. er. strategy in which it is negotiating/engaging?

      First, here are two links for some basic info (I apologize in advance if they aren’t allowed) :
      http://blog.gulflive.com/mississippi-press-news/2014/10/psycamore_files_ocean_springs.html
      and
      http://blog.gulflive.com/mississippi-press-news/2014/08/justice_department_ocean_sprin.html

      Anyway, the Psycamore folks wanted to use a house in a commercial area for a non-custodial, out-patient treatment facility (generally speaking, a doctor’s office but mental health related). However, a local real estate agent/”player” with some nearby property for sale didn’t want anything that might ding the value nearby. So, she does what any “player” would do – turn to “friends in high places” for some lovin’. With Dogan and Wilkinson right by their side, the Aldermen (save for Dalgo) say, “the law be damned, we’re in charge here!” and put a stop to it.
      Oops. It seems the feds are not terribly impressed and break off a bootheel when they insert the boot up…, well, you know. So, the Psycamore folks say, well, OK, cover our costs thus far (in what now seems like an offer to sell $100 bills for a buck each), but with the staggering legal minds of Dogan & Wilkinson on hand for advice, the City says, “F off!”
      Oops part deux (at least). So Psycamore asks for $405,000 in damages, which probably means, given the past demands, they’d probably take less than half of that, and maybe a quarter of it, all in. And with their awesome legal minds behind them, the City again offers a middle finger to Psycamore AND the DOJ report.
      Oops part three. Psycamore says, “OK, let’s make it 1.2 mil.” It goes to the MS Supreme Court (No. 2013-CA-00118-SCT, 124 So.3d 658 (2013)). Anyway, the upshot is that now, the City (i.e., the taxpayers of Ocean Springs) have paid $437,000 to Psycamore and lord knows how much to Dogan & WIlkinson for the on-going “advice and counsel” (plus, appeals are not cheap) AND/BUT they will still owe more to both before this mess finally gets settled.
      All this taxpayer money, when, after getting what the “hooked-up” real estate agent wanted, i.e., no “psycho ward” (not my words and not what it was going to be) to potentially ding the value of her property/listing AND being able to make it go away for a few grand. But nope, what with Dogan & Willkinson on the case, it has become yet another taxpayer-funded fiasco, with Dogan & Wilkinson managing to make yet another rather nice fee.
      Who knows, Mr. Wilkinson (and crew) might have given different legal advice if he didn’t have a $1.5 million dollar Hatteras (“Sweet Liberty” – I bet liberty is pretty sweet if the tab gets paid with OPM) and a million dollar (give or take) condo at The Marseilles (Perdido Key, and JMO, but nothing says “I gots me some class!” like using the English spelling of a French city for a box of condos on the “Redneck Riveria”), amongst other niceties, to occupy his mind. Or pay for.
      And speaking of “who knows?,” maybe someday, various federal indictments will offer some explanation for some of the various interesting things that regularly occur down on the coast. And then, maybe the allocutions in plea bargains might fill in some holes in the stories. Eh, who knows…probably just rumors.

        1. Great post Nunn. Lots of interesting info that is spot on. When your mentor is Richard “Dickie” Scruggs you learn to expect the finer things in life and like Dickie you will do what ever it takes to acquire and keep them. Robert Wilkinson is cut from the same mold as his mentor but has failed to reach the level of the great one, Mr. Scruggs. Mr.Wilkerson still toils in various city halls in Jackson County and not the halls outside of Sen. Trent Lott’s office like Mr. Scruggs once did. With the era of asbestos and tobacco litigation over all a small town lawyer has is billable hours. They have basically gone from mining gold to mining coal. Its dirty and does not pay much. Sweet Liberty burns a lot of fuel but still is a great way to take the judges on the approved list out fishing. As far as Mr.Wilkinson being a king maker, he has failed. Dickie Scruggs was a king maker and loved to brag about it. I know Dickie Scruggs and Robert Wilkerson is no Dickie Scruggs. All they have is the temporary ability to bill to the maximum amount that they think a client can pay. Rest assured he is loving the chaos at the city of Ocean Springs and the Singing River Hospital System. Dogan and Wilkinson will eventually fade out and be replaced by others and then more time can be spent on the boats and at the condos thinking about what could have been if only Wilkinson had said no to Roy Williams when the Heidelberg, Steinberger, Colmer and Burrow law firm kicked Roy Williams to the curb and he was officeless. Wilkinson took him in and now will pay the price for the partnership they formed. Roy Williams and son have played puppet masters at Dogan & Wilkinson every since. The SRHS fiasco will expose them all in the end.

          1. This seems like a good place to repost this link for a 60′ Hatteras Convertible for sale. This one currently goes by “Sweet Liberty”.

            Also noted: ships.findthedata.com lists Sweet Liberty as follows:

            Sweet Liberty Pascagoula, MS
            Service Type: Recreational Vessel
            Organization name: Par Yachts Llc
            Organization type: Limited Liability Company

            Delbert Hoseman sent PAR Yachts LLC Christmas Greetings as follows:

            Said PAR Yachts LLC according to the MS SOS having received a Notice to Dissolve/Revoke on 10/13/2014, and apparently not having remedied the same, Certificate of Administrative Dissolution issued on 12/20 2014.

            Another data point.

            1. Looks like it is time for the partners at Dogan and Wilkinson to start the downsizing. I predict you will see Wilkinson in a 14′ Carolina skiff soon. No more fishing shows with Al Jones. “Just take a judge fishing” will become more difficult. Wilkinson should keep the boat slip that now holds the 60′ Sweet Liberty so others can continue to use it like they have in the past when the boat is down at the condo.

              1. Rfp:

                I’ve heard of BOGO ( Buy One Get One free) but what does BOLO mean Buy One Load One free?

                Me tinks dis could bees another Walker faux liquidation home sale to portray a ‘poor, poor dem state’ den after things blo’ over da’ house done never bees sold butt da’ so-called po’ owners continue to co-habitat in lap- dance luxury while da’ public bees left in po’ financial ruin.

          2. Well, you know more than I do, I guess. I thought Wilkinson was a long-time associate of Williams, and long before HSCB (and formally Williams and Colingo, etc.). Anyone interested might want to look at Dodson v. Singing River Hospital Sys., 839 So.2d 530 (Miss.2003) and McCoy v. Preferred Risk Ins. Co. and SRHS, 471 So.2d 396 (1985) (Google Scholar will likely have them for those without subscription law reporters), back when Wilkinson and Williams were at Megehee, Brown, Williams & Mestayer, pre-Colingo, Williams, Heidelberg, Steinberger & McElhaney. These guys, as far as I know, are/were defense lawyers, not plaintiff’s lawyers. In other words, they want to control judges because they cannot control juries (OTOH, generally, the plaintiff’s guys like to play to the passions of juries because they know it would be hard to, um, “woo” the judges into running away with them). I’m not saying defense guys don’t have friends from the plaintiff’s side, or even scratch each others’ privates on stuff outside the courthouse, but litigation-wise, these guys are polar opposites. Now, I would agree that smarts-and-cunning-wise, Wilkinson is about Balducci level, i.e., Dick would chew Wilkinson up and spit him out and never realize he had shit in his teeth. It’s possible that the folks over at HSCB are laughing their asses off at the mess Dogan and Wilkinson have made for themselves – from what I have heard, the D & W kids were a bunch of JV players who were rumored to cheat before Williams and son waltzed back in.
            And for what it’s worth, I think Williams and McIlhaney (along with Joe Colingo) left because of age restrictions in the PA at HSCB. Colingo retired to Alabama and recently passed away. And from what I know and hear, the folks left at HSCB are shore ‘nuf real lawyers, at least as far as S. MS goes, and generally speaking as far as lawyers go, pretty much legit.

      1. There are a lot of reasons people could possibly not like Robert Wilkinson, but this is not one of them. You are writing a revisionist history. Wilkinson advised the Board of Alderman against their course of action. He went as far as to warn that such a vote would open the city to litigation.

        1. Actually, Edwards (another D & W partner and technically the HMIC) advised the city that the case would be “difficult to win.” Yet, he and Dogan and Wilkinson were all willing to bill the taxpayers to have 3 partners to fight it out. I’d say that an attorney who really put the client’s interest first would have declined to pursue a course that he/they felt was both a legal and moral loser, especially when the folks making the call were spending tax dollars to pursue a case over which the USDOJ had already spanked them. But, hey, to paraphrase Homer Simpson, ethics schmethics, right? Hey, some folks have a large lifestyle carrying cost. Wilkinson, et al, live in Pascagoula, so who cares about Ocean Springs city taxes if the aldermen over there want to piss in the wind for one of their friends…well, except for the those in Ocean Springs – you know, the taxpayers – who have to pay for this kind of court-clogging, fee generating crappola. But, hey, if you think they are fighting a good fight, unass your own checkbook – it’s pretty clear they don’t care where the fee comes from or what professional prudence and circumspection indicate…as long as your check clears.

        2. Pravda, I have enjoyed your posts and would like to offer one thought about Dogan and Wilkinson’s involvement in the Psycamore matter. It has been established and is a well know fact that lawyers at Dogan &Wilkinson are primarily a defense firm and not a plaintiffs firm. They defend insurance companies. You just have to wonder, have they ever or do they currently represent the City of Ocean Springs’ insurance carrier or re-insurance company? Did they ever question the fact that the city’s insurance carrier denied coverage in the Psycamore matter or was it an “Oh Well” moment in executive session? Are there any conflicts with Dogan and Wilkinson’s representation of the city in this matter? We all know from what has taken place at the SRHS involving this same firm that they cannot see the conflict forest for the fees. In the Jan.23 Ms.Press article attorney Kris Carter and his client feel confident enough that the insurance companies denial is incorrect, he is willing to pursue litigation at his own expense and risk, releasing the city from the pending litigation in the matter. I guess I have a hard time visualizing an insurance defense law firm suing on behalf of anybody, an insurance company. How many insurance companies do they represent and how many have they sued? Maybe if we knew that we could determine who they really represent in the Psycamore matter, the city of Ocean Springs or their insurance carrier.

  2. A very loyal source within SRHS told me that Holland has his own secret agent woman! Yes! SRHS now employs spies (double agents). Let Grandpa Grimm tell you a little bedtime story…
    Once upon a time, not so long ago, there was a woman who was a contract employee with SRHS, “G”. Her work with this world class facility began with her teaching a class here and one there. Now, keep in mind that these classes did not require a vast amount of skill or expertise; in fact, almost anyone could have taught them. But, you see, this individual had the inside advantage, (she went to the same church as Holland and his crew). She wasn’t a dynamic speaker, nor a vigorously engaging facilitator, but to Holland she was the cat’s meow. To the employees she was nothing more than another one of Holland’s “favorites”.
    Several years ago, when the economy started its downward turn (coincidentally, the same period SRHS went on its huge spending spree), “G”, a contract employee came to see Holland (then COO) to woo him into making her a permanent FTE. The entire basis for her request was that her husband “might be losing his job in the summer” and…”if, he loses his job, her family would need insurance”. Holland immediately called HR and they agreed based on this POSSIBILITY, she should be made permanent FTE.
    As in the usual practice for the hand-picked individuals and made up positions at SRHS, the job was posted AFTER the fact and quickly taken down and she was immediately announced as a new Director of Guest Relations. Just like that King Holland made a decree in h is Kingdom and so it was done.
    In her new role, she was to be over guest/patient experiences. She very rarely visited guests in their rooms, she didn’t round on a daily basis to new admits, she refused to handle complaints. Basically, she stayed in an office and ran reports that SRHS paid a company a great amount of money to produce. She would then present them at meetings for King Holland and jester Anderson. I won’t bore you with all the parties she planned and money that was wasted on trips here and there, or the classes she taught that were so old and backdated from the 70’s. But alas, we must keep in mind, she had a very limited skill set to begin with after all.
    Fast forward to March 2014, Holland needed someone he trusted, a confidant. Someone who would help him in his quest to become the new CEO. He selected “G” to become his spy. She would lurk the halls eavesdropping on employees and reporting every thing she heard (whether truth or not) to Holland. No one dared said anything about her, for fear of Executioner Dr. Shoe would whack them!
    When Holland and his team of diabolical financial villains decided to dissolve the Pension Fund, who better than his own operative (now double agent) to be promoted to spy. SRHS can’t pay their bills on time (holding bills some times months before paying them) , can’t afford to pay Retirees their money, but they can pay a FTE to watch Facebook and Slabbed.org and other news outlets to find any information that is being said about the SRHS Kingdom and its court of mischiefs.
    Now Holland and his court/crew can do whatever they want and make it appear acceptable; after all, who would ever question a CEO who holds his meetings in the church and not in the office buildings?
    Now, Grandpa Grimm needs his rest, for tomorrow is a new day. There are many more background stories that need to be told to make sure all of the SRHS villains are taken down, one by one, so the retirees can once again rest at night knowing their pensions are safe and sound.
    Grandpa promises to tell you the story of Cobb, the Builder next and how he got his fancy boat (no this is not DMR, but close). Sweet dreams my children.

    1. This post caught my attention. I am often wrong but when a commenter posts a story with this level of detail I would believe it tends to be true more times than not. Of course, that is my own personal observation and opinion.

      I couldn’t help but notice that a lot of what was mentioned seems to be very similar to a state agency in a particular state that appears to have a fetish with single BBW’s. Just sayin’

  3. Seriously? Guest Relations? Patient Relations? She must be a looker. Kevin prefers attractive ladies I hear.
    What I’m waiting for is the list of who is screwing whom! I’m sure there is a lot of panty dropping going on…

  4. I guess that’s why Lady Ogle wears unprofessional clothes to work. You can see her goods if she bends the right way. She barely works and is should not be in that position. She gives all her work to the Paralegal.

  5. She’s no looker. He might think she is, but in my opinion she a bow-legged, middle aged plain Jane with clunky heels. I always wondered why she suddenly appeared on the scene and had a pretigious job, title, office, etc.

    Do y’all remember truelove’s true love? Or his drinking parties paid for by Singing River? And no, the investigators are not going to find the expenses filed under “b” for booze. But they could find it hidden under payouts to a contracted company under “d.” Maybe that will be the topic of a bedtime story for another night.

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