How do innocent people find justice in America? This is a valid question because, all too often, people don’t find justice in America’s legal system. The editors and investigative reporters at the US~Observer can attest to that firsthand. For more than 22 years, the US~Observer has worked hard and done what most attorneys fail to do. It has vindicated more than 4,200 people who had been wrongfully charged with or convicted of a crime.
Apart from the Innocence Project, which generally doesn’t take cases unless they are tied to DNA, there is absolutely nowhere except the US~Observer that innocent people can turn after the so-called American justice system has attacked them.
(US~Observer) Linn County, Oregon — In 2007, when the stock market was going south on investors, registered investment adviser (RIA) Randy Gray and his partner, Scott Whitney, ran a successful business named ZurCrowner. Gray mainly handled investors, while Whitney conducted certified public accounting (CPA) for the partnership.
Whitney was also the CPA for Albany, Ore., general contractor Derek Dunmyer of Absolute General Contracting, Inc. (Absolute). Unbeknownst to Gray, Whitney was conducting business (loans, etc.) outside of ZurCrowner with Dunmyer and needed financial reprieve. Because of the miserable stock market performance, Gray knew several ZurCrowner clients wanted to diversify their portfolios.
As a writer for the US~Observer, I’m accustomed to finding injustice within government and the justice system; but one injustice among many from the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare, is particularly shameful.
I’m talking about the fines that people will have to pay for not signing up for having their money taken and receiving little, if anything, good in return from Obamacare. Many people who don’t have healthcare now don’t because either they don’t want it or can’t afford it.
Basehor, Kan. — US~Observer Special Report — When the act of bullying comes to mind, one tends to think that it is primarily a problem that kids and school principals have to deal with. But sometimes it’s an issue adults must cope with as well. Such appears to be the case for Jason Cory, who worked as a police officer in Basehor, Kan., from September 2007 to July 2010 and is now suing the city for his wrongful termination.
Cory’s lawsuit alleges that although many city officials considered him an exemplary officer, during his nearly three years on Basehor’s police force, he was regularly “ridiculed and belittled” by Police Chief Lloyd Martley and his right-hand man, Lieutenant Robert Pierce.
West Palm Beach, Fla. — US~Observer Special Report — Since his conviction of DUI manslaughter on Sept. 15, 2011, Jamie Clark has adamantly maintained his innocence. Clark’s attorneys, Benjamin Waxman and Alan Ross of Robbins, Tunkey, Ross, Amsel, Robins & Waxman filed a motion for post-conviction relief (new trial) on Feb. 13.
On March 1, Florida’s 4th District Court of Appeals granted Waxman’s motion, relinquishing jurisdiction to the trial court, giving the trial court power to rule on Clark’s argument that the State of Florida committed a Brady violation by withholding exculpatory evidence (evidence that could have been used to prove his innocence) during his first trial. Waxman’s motion referred to “newly discovered evidence” not being disclosed to the defense that clearly contributed to Clark’s conviction. The motion further claimed that ineffective assistance of counsel committed by Clark’s trial defense attorney violated Clark’s 6th Amendment right to be adequately represented.
Conservative Americans like to think they are defending the founding principles of the United States, defending individual rights and the Constitution. They are doing no such thing.
Don’t get me wrong. Conservatives study, express, believe in and support American principles. But defending? No.
On July 13, a jury of six women returned the only verdict it could, not guilty, in the false prosecution case of 29-year-old George Zimmerman.
Subsequent to Zimmerman’s shooting and killing Trayvon Martin in self-defense, Florida State Attorney Norm Wolfinger refused to prosecute Zimmerman after local police investigated the case and concluded that no crime had been committed. Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee was fired by Sanford City Manager Norton Bonaparte for refusing to arrest Zimmerman.
Here we go again, or rather, it just keeps on going.
The Internal Revenue Service, the same agency that took lavish trips on the taxpayers’ dime and discriminated against conservative groups that applied for tax-exempt status, is up to its old tricks of threatening criminal charges against people who for years have sought to work out their back tax issues.
Sanford, Fla. — A Factual Accounting — George Zimmerman, a 29-year-old Hispanic man, is charged with shooting and killing 17-year-old Trayvon Martin while conducting “neighborhood watch” on Feb. 26, 2012.
Government sources have informed US~Observer that the Sanford Police Department had no intention of charging Zimmerman with a crime and that it wasn’t until African-Americans from across the United States started protesting that the State of Florida stepped into the picture and filed a groundless, even ridiculous charge of second-degree murder against Zimmerman. State Attorney Angela Corey was assigned by the State to bring the false charge.
Plea bargaining is the process whereby a prosecutor comes to an agreement with a defendant to resolve a criminal case. Roughly 90 percent of all criminal cases resolve through the process of a plea bargain. The plea bargain is a contract of sorts, and the terms of the agreement often may vary considerably from one case to another.
A plea bargain will always include the defendant’s pleading guilty to at least one crime. What varies is the crime pleaded to or the punishment imposed. For example, a plea bargain occurs when a defendant is charged with two separate crimes, and he pleads guilty to one in exchange for a dismissal of the other. A plea bargain also occurs if the prosecutor offers a specific punishment and the judge agrees to it in exchange for the defendant’s pleading guilty. There are many variables that affect plea bargaining; however, the common thread in all plea bargaining is that the government avoids the burden of a jury trial and the defendant gets, in theory, a more favorable resolution of his case.