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Posts Tagged ‘Alto Texas

2 Alto, TX city hall clerks indicted for felony theft

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Alto, TX: 

Two former City of Alto clerks have posted bond after being indicted for stealing tens of thousands of dollars from the city. The theft of public funds allegedly began in October 1, 2010, according to court records. The duo has been charged with felony theft by a public servant. (Courtesy KETK) The Texas Rangers began investigating the missing funds back in April after the two City employees were terminated. (Jacksonville Progress). Years and years of fishing out the City coffers has deliberately gone unnoticed.

A Cherokee County grand jury has indicted two former City of Alto employees on felony theft by a public servant charges.

Jeanie Mignon Curtis Selman, 35, of Alto, was indicted for second-degree felony theft by a public servant when the Cherokee County grand jury met on Aug. 22.

According to the text of the indictment East Texas News obtained Tuesday, the grand jury met in the 2nd Judicial District Court. The indictment alleges that Selman stole somewhere between $30,000 and $150,000 while she was employed as a court clerk by the city of Alto. The indictment states that the theft occurred on Oct. 1, 2010.

The Cherokee County grand jury also indicted another former City of Alto employee. Whittney Nicole Arriola, 31, of Alto, was indicted on a felony theft by a public servant charge as well. The indictment states that the alleged theft occurred on Oct. 1, 2010. She is also accused of stealing between $30,000 and $150,000 from the city. Like Selman, she was working as a court clerk at the time.

Each woman had a bail amount of $10,000. Both Selman and Arriola have posted their bail amounts, and they have been released from the county jail.

Back in April, East Texas News learned that the Texas Rangers were asked to look into allegations of theft that occurred at Alto City Hall, according to Texas Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Jean Dark.

Dark said the investigation was requested by the Alto Police Department.

(Source: KTRE)

(Source: CBS 19)

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Written by Cherokee County, Texas

09/20/2016 at 5:00 PM

Murderers and drug addicts on the Cherokee County payroll

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Michael Dashawn Harris, sentenced to life (with parole) for the murder of Jacksonville, TX resident Faye Bell Harris.

Time served: 6 years.

(Source: Jacksonville Daily Progress, January 22, 2004)

“Harris faces competency hearing.”

The capital murder case of Michael Dashawn Harris is scheduled to get underway next week – in a preliminary sense – with a hearing to determine his competency to stand trial.

Judge Dwight Phifer, who oversees the state’s 2nd Judicial District, has also ordered that jury selection for the trial begin on either Feb. 9 or 17.

Police officers arrested Harris, 44, on Aug. 4, 2003, after he went to his mother-in-law’s house and allegedly shot and killed his estranged wife, Faye Harris. Harris was also charged with retaliation.

In Texas, any time a murder is committed in the course of committing certain felonies – such as retaliation – a person may be charged with capital murder and be eligible for the death penalty.

Cherokee County District Attorney Elmer Beckworth has not said if he will seek the death penalty in the Harris case. (Courtesy: Daily Progress)

After trying to burn down their house and later murdering his ex-wife in front of their daughter, Michael Dashawn Harris passed away 6 years into a life sentence arranged by District Attorney Elmer Beckworth. The version of events promulgated by the folks in Cherokee County and the district attorney is that the murder was a result of lax felony bond requirements and that prosecutors followed the letter of the law. After all that money was spent on Beckworth traveling to Austin to ostensibly champion Faye Bell Harris as a victim’s rights advocate and to grandstand, Cherokee County newspapers did not contest Michael Harris’ possible early release to the Parole Board.

They are confident the ignorant public has been fooled completely in this case; they convinced the Harris family that they were not responsible for allowing a drug informant on the streets after repeatedly arresting him for escalating domestic violence. What is Michael Harris’ value to the district attorney’s office?

Michael Harris was initially arrested on a Cherokee County warrant by the Tyler Police Department on January 27, 2003. He was transported back to Cherokee County where he was charged with arson/attempt to cause bodily injury in a house of worship. He made bail and continued to repeatedly attack his estranged ex-wife while on felony bond.

Michael Dashawn Harris (Courtesy: Smith County, TX)

Oddly enough, Michael D. Harris was not just charged with a homicide; he pleaded to murdering a “peace officer or fireman”  and attempting to burn down this so-called “place of worship.”  To the district attorney’s office, the Harris household was a religious safe house strategically located in the city of Jacksonville’s northern drug corridor. Hence Elmer Beckworth charged Michael Harris with murdering a “peace officer,” [the victim Mrs. Harris], i.e. the other informant living in the house and cooperating with the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Department. Faye Harris worked as a therapy technician at the Rusk State Hospital according to the Cherokeean Herald. Did Michael Harris murder their CI or was he charged under another one of Cherokee County’s made up statutes?

(Source: Cheorkeean April 30, 1998 Sec. A, p. 7)

Sources:  Criminal Docket Case 15388: CAPITAL MURDER OF A PEACE OFFICER OR FIREMAN THE STATE OF TEXAS vs HARRIS, MICHAEL DASHAWN. Filed 09/22/2003 –Disposition: 10/18/2004 Conviction-guilty plea or nolo cont-no jury.

Case 15354: MURDER; Case 15387: ASSAULT CAUSES BODILY INJURY FAMILY VIOLENCE ENHANCED; Case 15250: ARSON BODILY INJURY/DEATH IN PLACE OF WORSHIP. 2nd District Court, District Clerk, Cherokee County, TX.

The Michael Harris case never went to trial; he pleaded No Contest to the 2003 homicide after his in-and-out rehab stints at the Rusk State Hospital. His bail was set and reset multiple times by the Cherokee County court system. Faye Harris’ calls to the district court to have her ex-husband locked up for his escalating domestic violence were ignored. Thousands of taxpayer dollars have been spent to convince the public otherwise.

Are residents beginning to realize the depth and breadth of public corruption going on under their noses and why their municipalities’ police forces have dried up? Where has all the taxpayer money for public safety gone? Exactly how is the District Attorney’s Law Enforcement Fund from seizures being spent?

Taxpayer money is spent subsidizing the families and allies of the same group of people who have been draining Cherokee County dry for decades. Cherokee County is a family-operated criminal enterprise and along with their familial kickbacks, their confidential informants have bankrupted the city and county coffers. According to CBS News, the towns of Wells and Alto, TX have both had their entire police forces furloughed as their city councils do some fiduciary housecleaning. The tiny town of Alto, TX is making up for a $185,000 budget deficit with the layoffs. (Source: CBS News, Tiny Texas town lays off entire police force)

For the first time in modern history, these one stoplight towns have done a little fiscal oversight and discovered that their city services are in the RED. Too much taxpayer money has been allocated for personal use which includes paying law enforcement and their families to illegally monitor the law-abiding public. They have decided to cut their city law enforcement and have overextended sheriff’s deputies respond to their emergencies. The local Cherokeean Herald reports Alto, TX (population 1150) had five officers on payroll for nighttime alarm patrol in a one-horse town.

Looking for an oral history of Cherokee County, Texas? 

Chapter 1: A history of corruption that cannot be rewritten or ignored.

Former Alto police chiefs’ salaries have ranged from $16K to over $100K, depending on who the applicant was related to, even though the city’s population has remained at or below 1100 for the last 30 years. Their turnover has been frequent, controversial and bitter at times. Relatives of the former district attorney have framed past police chiefs to run them out of town and move themselves into a coveted salaried position. (Source: Cherokeean) Former Alto mayor Garwin Baugh tells the Jacksonville Daily Progress in 1992 how he and Police Chief Tom Griffith were targeted for openly discussing the coverup of a murdered feed store owner. (Source: Daily Progress May 1, 1992)

Chief Griffith was ousted and the district attorney’s investigator took his job to make sure the capital murder conviction in the case was not overturned. All public discussions of the case were quelled. The conviction was eventually overturned and an innocent defendant facing life in prison was released on time served.  The case was The State vs. Terry Watkins.

Elmer Beckworth represented the State at Watkins’ appeal; his job was to thwart any and all evidentiary review hearings that proved Terry Watkins’ innocence. The victim’s life insurance was used among other things to pay State witnesses for the prosecutor, former district attorney Charles Holcomb. Taxpayer money has always been spent to keep the family clan in office and against whistleblowers. Proceeds from insurance payouts also come in handy for hush money.


Former District Attorney Charles Holcomb takes money to hire witnesses (Source: Daily Progress August 23, 1990).

During this current police furlough, the sheriff’s department and district attorney’s office will have to rely solely on their good ol’ boy/ bitty network to keep watch over the southern part of the county. Even more taxpayer money will be allocated for illegal phone drops, jury plants, ‘anonymous’ tipsters and other reserve officers’ clandestine eavesdropping.

Every week the local newspapers report the status of merchant sales tax revenues as if it were a true signal of the economic status of the county. Following their logic, these little towns rake in the sales tax but cannot afford to have police protection? Think again.

The only investigative technique utilized by law enforcement in this area is illegal phone tapping of its residents. At least since the 1920’s they have enlisted their family members to listen to and record as many perfectly legal telephone and innocuous business conversations as possible throughout the county. In their minds there is no need for an active police force in rural areas because their 3rd generation phone tapping network is intact and operating at 100%.

Informants provide routine drug busts to justify county and state level investigators and their salaries, while taxpayer money is pooled to help pay these CIs’ house bills and keep them in the county. Instead of being ostracized, murderers and drug addicts are on the dole in Cherokee County. When it comes to politicking, these informants provide pabulum for district attorney’s and sheriff investigators. That is where the money has gone. Tax revenue goes to keep these salaried parasites in office and against any and all who challenge them. Traveling public beware if you use the local telephone systems or post offices.

No need to dial 9-1-1 folks; they know about crime before it even takes place. Usually they are the perpetrators.

Sales tax reciprocity from the city to the county level will cease to exist until Cherokee County voters are brave enough to do some judiciary housecleaning. Meanwhile, Cherokee County taxpayer dollars are still being spent on prosecuting Robert Fox for filing a Notice to Sue in Smith County; investigating the Precinct 3 Commissioner for her bonafide due diligence; and decades of private property improvements by county officials in bed with the district attorney. The entire county, much less the small towns of Alto and Wells, TX, can no longer afford the public corruption that has been going on for decades.

Paroled felon with gun turns State’s evidence; has criminal record expunged. Molester pleads to 24 months for raping Jacksonville TX boy.

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Rusk, Texas:  In January 2004, death row inmate Richard Aaron Cobb was convicted of capital murder in Cherokee County’s 2nd Judicial District Court, CAUSE NO. 15054. According to a TDCJ summary of the September 2, 2002 incident in Rusk, Texas, Richard Cobb and codefendant Buenka Adams abducted a man and two women during a convenience store robbery. They fatally shot the man, sexually assaulted and shot the two women. The three victims’ bodies were left in a field near Alto, Texas. The two female store clerks survived. Both Richard Cobb and Buenka Adams were convicted of capital murder in Cherokee County, Texas and sentenced to death.

 Information based upon Richard Cobb’s direct appeal to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals indicates that Cherokee County District Attorney Elmer Beckworth dropped felony gun possession charges on a habitual criminal, named W.T., for his jail cell testimony against Cobb.  W.T. was strategically placed in the Cherokee County jail cell (in Rusk) with Richard Cobb during the Appellant’s trial and testified he overheard Cobb implicating codefendant Buenka Adams. W.T., a convicted felon, was incarcerated in Rusk, TX for felony possession of a firearm. Appellant Richard Cobb also argued in his Motion that Elmer Beckworth’s office failed to disclose to defense attorneys one victim’s financial arrangement to have her story/testimony broadcasted on the syndicated “Montel Williams’ Show.” The witness was also in the process of writing a book detailing her ordeal.

During a motion for a new trial, Richard Cobb’s attorneys argued the fact that Cherokee County District Attorney Investigator Randy Hatch had made calls to W.T.’s parole officers asking for leniency on their star witness’ behalf. Felony gun charges were completely dropped against W.T. for his cooperation. To date, W.T.’s Cherokee County record has been expunged. District Attorney Elmer Beckworth denied making ‘deals’ with the felon W.T.; however Beckworth told the TXCRIMAPP charges against W.T. were “just not prosecutable” because W.T. was stopped on a four-wheeler on his way to “target practice” in the woods. The fact is W.T.’s testimony was never needed to convict the Cobb/Adams duo of murder; forensics and material evidence were overwhelming against them both. Plus the two surviving victims’ testimony.

W.T’s unecessary testimony was merely a ruse to bolster the district attorney’s case. And let’s not forget who W.T. is related to in Rusk, Texas…an easy ploy to get a friend’s son off of parole altogether. Former DA Investigator Randy Hatch vouched for a convicted felon on parole caught with an illegal firearm, despite the State having ample testimony from the two surviving victims at trial. There never was a TDCJ Parole Revocation Hearing to determine W.T.’s felon gun possession charges. In fact, W.T. was released early from his parole and his identity wiped clean with the help of the district attorney’s office, for being a supposed jailhouse snitch.

District Attorney Elmer Beckworth’s statement (in the Appellant’s brief) to the court regarding dropping his State witness’ felony gun possession charge:

“My experience in over 20 years of felony prosecution the citizens of Cherokee County and East Texas generally are not real fond of weapons offenses, very difficult to get a jury in a felon in possession with a firearm. And in situations where someone is hunting the weapon is in their home or something like this where it’s target practicing and there is no other crimes involved or activities indicating a danger situation it is very difficult to get a conviction and most of those cases are not prosecuted and are declined on the basis of insufficient evidence.”

Quite the opposite stance Elmer Beckworth and the local Cherokee County media takes when probationers have their community service revoked for “target practice” during ‘slow news daze.’ The Jacksonville Daily Progress even reports in a convenient article the fact that Texas state law prohibits felons keeping a firearm even within their home, until five years have passed after their parole or probation is over. Texas law in 2002 appropriately applied to Mr. Beckworth’s star witness W.T. states it is “unlawful for a convicted felon to possess a firearm outside of their residence at any time.” Deals to strike the arrest record of a convicted felon are also beyond the pale, except in Cherokee County, Texas.

Attorneys for Richard Cobb produced letters written by W.T. to Elmer Beckworth and his office referencing W.T.’s meetings with Beckworth and investigator Randy Hatch, stating: “At our meeting in Mr. Hatch’s office on 12-19-02 you agreed to completely clear this charge as well as try to have the parole hold lifted so I could get released.” Another letter was written by Beckworth on January 10, 2003. Although it was addressed “to whom it may concern,” Beckworth testified that it was sent to [W.T.’s] parole officer, Roy Shamblin. The letter stated: “Please be advised that this office will not seek prosecution on [W.T.] for the offense of Unlawful Possession of Firearm by Felon. If anything further is needed please contact this office.” Signed Elmer C. Beckworth, Jr. and Randy Hatch.

Apparenlty District Attorney Elmer Beckworth did make a sweet deal with convicted felon W.T.  We can always count on local media to avoid reporting actual court documents and prosecutors to lie about actual proceedings. The ends always justify the means.

Richard Cobb’s capital murder conviction was affirmed by the appeals court and Cobb remains on death row in Huntsville. The Appellant’s arguments were predictably immaterial to the Court of Criminal Appeals; however they shed light on how effortlessly Cherokee County’s district attorney office lies about the deals they cut, when it is politically expedient. Especially when felons are used to bolster their cases. A more progressive court of appeals may have released these murderers back into society and agreed with the Appellant’s points of error made by the Cherokee County, TX prosecutor. Cronyism with unreported and nondisclosed felons is a common Cherokee County district court tactic. And when the judicial errors are revealed, the local newspapers report a crackdown of the exact same crimes ignored prior, complete with embellished police reports. Why? Because Cherokee County is corrupt.

And innocent rail-roaded defendants in the region can expect even the most egregious prosecutorial misconduct, collusion between State Witnesses and Investigators, a la the jailhouse snitch and Randy Hatch, and complete baldface lies to be sanctioned by the higher appellate courts.

The argument is not that Richard Cobb and/or Buenka Adams were obviously guilty of murder and should be put to death. The question is why would the Cherokee County District Attorney deliberately risk putting the trial jury’s verdict in jeopardy by swearing in a convicted felon (who they made deals with) on the stand. Why rely on a jail house snitch to testify when two surviving witnesses would have presented unimpeachable evidence against the defendants? Why? Because Cherokee County is corrupt.

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Richard Cobb, death row

Jacksonville, TX:

Cherokee County District Attorney Elmer Beckworth blames another rape victim for being “too embarrassed to go to trial” during an interview in the August 19, 2008 issue of the Jacksonville Daily Progress. During June and July, Beckworth’s office offered probation and a 24 month prison sentence to Jacksonville, TX resident Stephen Oliver. Oliver, age 48, pleaded guilty to repeatedly sexually assaulting a local teenage boy for over a 2-1/2 year period.

Beckworth, pleased with the light sentence of the child rapist, stated to the Daily Progress the victim would “recant his story” if the case went to trial. Of course Cherokee County residents, voters and readers of the Daily Propagandist are too stupid to realize even teenage minors don’t take the stand in cases of sex assault; their statements are enough to convict offenders for life. Stephen Oliver will spend less time in prison than he did sexually assaulting and ruining the life of a innocent youth.

After serving a few months of his prison term, Stephen Oliver can join the following list of registered Cherokee County Texas sex offenders given probation by Elmer Beckworth, whose names were released in 2006:

• Frank Birden Guinn, age 82, Alto TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 12-year-old female;

• Michael Morrison, 48, Alto TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 12-year-old female;

• Gary Mark Hayles, 43, Bullard TX, indecency with a child by contact of an 8-year-old female;

• Wesley Boyd Mohr, 60, Bullard TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 10-year-old female;

• William Barry Travis, 54, Bullard TX, aggravated sexual assault of a child of an 8-year-old female;

• Matthew Isaiah White, 17, Bullard TX, indecency by exposure involving a 15-year-old female;

• Christopher Steven Goleman, 33, Gallatin TX, aggravated sexual assault of a disabled 39 year-old female;

• Tommy Junior Allen, 54, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 11-year-old female;

• William Tracy Arnold, 42, Jacksonville TX, burglary and felony involving a 34-year-old female;

• James Travis Baker, 22, Jacksonville TX, indecency of a child by contact of a 6-year-old female;

• James Isaac Barnett, 18, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a child of a 14-year-old-female;

• Brian D. Black, 19, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 10-year-old female;

• Vernon Willis Blackshire, 29, Jacksonville TX, sexual assault of a 14-year-old female;

• Anthony Eugene Boone, 38, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 6-year-old male;

• Cole Joseph Brooks, 22, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 13-year-old female;

• Christopher Lee Calley, 25, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 3-year-old female;

• Gark Michael Clark, Jacksonville TX, 52, sexual assault of a child of a 16-year-old girl;

• Arturo Allen Cochran, 26, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 12-year-old female;

• Carlos Jerome Conner, 37, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 13-year-old female;

• Steven Daille, 58, Jacksonville TX, sexual assault of a 15-year-old female;

• James William Dennis, 64, Jacksonville TX, agg. kidnapping/sex assault of a 38-year-old female;

• Jose Ramon Galan, 53, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 9-year-old female;

• Jonathan Keith Glenn, 23, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of an 8-year-old female;

• James Henry Golden, 52, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 36-year-old female;

• Nathan Wayne Grimes, 61, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a 9-year-old female;

• Ollie Ray Grogan, 62, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a 5-year-old male and 7-year-old female;

• Nickolas Noel Harwell, 31, Jacksonville TX, two counts of aggravated sex assault of a 12-year-old female;

• Kevin Lyn Hawes, 42, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 15-year-old;

• Christopher Michael Hennessy, Jacksonville TX, 25, sexual assault of a 15-year-old female; absconded.

• William Lee Hershiser, 48, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 15-year-old female;

• Roger Hunter, 72, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 14-year-old female;

• Aaron Lee Joslin, 25, Jacksonville TX, two counts of sexual performance of a 7-year-old male;

• Robert Michael Lane, 33, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of a 10-year-old female;

• Jackie Neal Locke, 46, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 13-year-old female;

• Ben Mallard, 47, Jacksonville TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 11-year-old female;

• James Donald McClain, 56, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 20-year-old female, and 11-year-old female;

• Leroy Edward McCuen, 56, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 9-year-old female;

• Kenneth Ray Messick, 59, Jacksonville TX, sexual assault of a 14-year-old female and 16-year-old female;

• Stacy Bernard Mills, 39, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 11-year-old female;

• Tracey Dewayne Moseley, 33, Jacksonville TX, indecency by exposure, of a 15-year-old female;

• Jamie Lee Newburn, 28, Jacksonville TX, two counts of attempted sexual performance of a 14-year-old female;

• Sammy Carroll Newman, 54, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of a 12-year-old female;

• Patrick Brian Norsworthy, 43, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of an 8-year-old female;

• Derrick Wendell Owens, 34, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of a 9-year-old female;

• Kevin Wayne Patton, 36, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of a 14-year-old female;

• Glenn Durrell Pierce, 49 years of age, Jacksonville TX, sexual assault of a 15-year-old male;

• Bruce Townsend Powell, 48, Jacksonville TX, attempted sexual assault of a 30-year-old male;

• Jimmy Reed, 47, Jacksonville TX, attempted sexual assault of a 25-year-old female and unknown female;

• Mandell Rhodes Jr., 43, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 52-year-old female;

• Thompson Ward Stricklen, 43, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of a 11-year-old female;

• Paul Arlen Taylor, 51, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of a 13-year-old female;

• Terry Lawrence Taylor, 48, Jacksonville TX, indecency by contact of a 12-year-old female;

• James L. Wells, 52, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 5-year-old female and 6-year-old female;

• Johnny Decole Wells, 25, Jacksonville TX, sexual assault of a 15-year-old female;

• Larry Wayne White, 45, Jacksonville TX, aggravated sexual assault of an 8-year-old female;

• Timothy Kevin Zweck, 32, Jacksonville TX, sexual assault of a 15-year-old female;

• Robby Lee Buffalo, 32, Rusk TX, prohibited sexual assault (incest) of a 11-year-old female;

• Richard Dean Davis, 47, Rusk TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 14-year-old female;

• Nile James Dean, 39, Rusk TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 8-year-old female;

• James William Hammons, 45, Rusk TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 13-year-old female;

• Jason Aaron Husband, 29, Rusk TX, sexual assault of a child of a 15-year-old female;

• Elbert James Patton, 90, Rusk TX, indecency with a child by contact of an 8-year-old female and 9-year-old female; deceased.

• Delian Brenanard Session, 43, Rusk TX, sexual assault of a 34-year-old female and 11-year-old-female;

• Troy Gibbs Sutherland, 31 years of age, Rusk TX, attempted sexual assault of a 15-year-old female;

• Aubrey Thomas Taylor, 48 years of age, Rusk TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 10-year-old female;

• Dale Joseph Tylich, 51, Rusk TX, indecency with a child by contact of a female less than 16 years of age;

• Charles Clifton Bruner, 45, Troup TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 6-year-old female;

• Michael Servetus Childs, 31 years of age, Troup TX, sexual assault of a 14-year-old female;

• Tommy Robert Husband, 46 years of age, Troup TX, indecency with a child by contact of a 16-year-old female;

• Michael Sean Lee, 33 years of age, Troup TX, indecency with a child of a 13-year-old female;

• Timmey Martin, 41 years of age, Troup TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 14-year-old female;

• Michael Ryan McMichael, 34 years of age, Troup TX, indecency with a child of a 12-year-old female;

• Martin Otis Pitts, 51 years of age, Troup TX, two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a 7-year-old female;

• Bryan Thomas Toombs, 31 years of age, Troup TX, aggravated sexual assault of a 13-year-old female.

• Alisha Arriola Corley, 36 years of age, Wells TX, sexual assault of a 15-year-old male.

 

That’s your Cherokee County Texas district courts hard at work. The District Attorney’s office makes sure assault arrests of their grand and petite jury foreman never sees the light of day, either. Do a county by county comparison.

 § 22.01. ASSAULT. (a) A person commits an offense ifThe offense is a third degree felony if the offense is committed against an arresting officer or a victim of family violence.

the person:

(1) intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes

bodily injury to another, including the person’s spouse;

(2) intentionally or knowingly threatens another with

imminent bodily injury, including the person’s spouse; or

(3) intentionally or knowingly causes physical

contact with another when the person knows or should reasonably

believe that the other will regard the contact as offensive or

provocative.

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
Palestine, Texas:

Anderson County Sheriff candidate Steven Quick, age 46, was arrested on a domestic violence charge on Wednesday, July 16, 2008 for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend at their Palestine, TX residence. Both Quick and his girlfriend are Anderson County Jail employees; Mr. Quick being the former Chief Jailer and Democratic candidate vying for Anderson County Sheriff in November’s general elections. The assault appears to be isolated to a domestic dispute involving the dog kennels at their trailer house.

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Steven Quick, Palestine TX

 

 

Texas Occupational Code

CHAPTER 53. CONSEQUENCES OF CRIMINAL CONVICTION

§ 53.002. APPLICABILITY OF CHAPTER. This chapter does

not apply to:

(1) the Supreme Court of Texas, a person licensed

under the court’s authority on behalf of the judicial department of

government, or an applicant for a license issued under the court’s

authority on behalf of the judicial department of government;

(2) a peace officer or an applicant for a license as a

peace officer described by Article 2.12, Code of Criminal

Procedure; or

(3) a person who:

(A) is licensed by the Texas State Board of

Medical Examiners, the Texas State Board of Pharmacy, the State

Board of Dental Examiners, or the State Board of Veterinary Medical

Examiners; and

(B) has been convicted of a felony under Chapter

481 or 483 or Section 485.033, Health and Safety Code.

Under Title 3 of the Texas Occupational Code and the Medical Practice Act, autonomous state agencies regulate the licensing of doctors, dentists, pharmacists, acupuncturists and other health providers. Such as the Texas Medical Board and Board of Dental Examiners. It is this dichotomy of legal statutes that allows arrested and convicted offenders to continue to practice their licensed professions unnoticed within the county. Normally, the arrest of Cherokee County professionals and subsequent dismissal of charges goes unreported. Especially those members of the local Chamber of Commerce or related to the county’s ‘Politico.’ The district attorney’s office doesn’t want anyone to spill the beans.

The Texas State Board of Medical Examiners and the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE) compiles public databases to review license holders’ disciplinary actions. The Texas State Pharmacy Board also reviews its members. And these professional boards don’t look kindly at license holders not reporting their assaultive offenses and continuing to operate in health related services. Because the local Cherokeean Herald and Jacksonville Daily Progress take their marching orders from the Rusk Texas courthouse (and refuse to print articles when prosecutor’s cousins are arrested), readers can be informed of Cherokee County inmate bookings via the online VINELink. Anderson County jails, however are routinely offline. Crime victims may choose to register with the service: The Texas Statewide Automated Victim Notification System (SAVNS) that gives offenders’ county jail custody and case status. The Texas SAVNS hotline is available 24/7 at 1-877-TX4-VINES (1-877-894-8463).

TDCJ  also offers inmate information at their state-level facilities via their website at : http://168.51.178.33/webapp/TDCJ/index2.htm

Under Sec. 153.0045. RULES ON CONSEQUENCES OF CRIMINAL CONVICTION, the boards adopted Chapter 53 of the Texas Occupational Code requiring hearings and stiff penalties when license holders are convicted of crimes.

“The board shall adopt rules and guidelines as necessary to comply with Chapter 53, except to the extent the requirements of this subtitle are stricter than the requirements of that chapter-Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., ch. 269, Sec. 1.12, eff. Sept. 1, 2005.”

A good example from the Texas Medical Board, Fall 2006-

UNPROFESSIONAL OR DISHONORABLE CONDUCT VIOLATIONS:

GOODMAN, JOHN WILLIS, M.D., RUSK, TX, Lic. #D2437

On October 6, 2006, the Texas Medical Board and Dr. Goodman entered into an Agreed Order requiring that he have a chaperone in the room any time he performs a physical examination on any patient and prohibiting him from performing genital or rectal examinations. The action was based on allegations that Dr. Goodman conducted inappropriate genital examinations on several [Rusk State Hospital] inmates in 1998.

Sec. 153.006. CRIMINAL RECORD REPORT.

(a) “The board may receive criminal record reports from any law enforcement agency or another source regarding a license holder or license applicant. ” This is a valuable law and resource to the public when it comes to drug convictions of health professionals, that may otherwise go unreported. As in Dr. Goodman of the Rusk State Hospital in 2006. 

 

Jacksonville, Texas:

Deborah Raissi, wife of Jacksonville, TX City Manager Mo Raissi, pleaded guilty on Monday, June 9, 2008 to possession of marijuana and drunk driving from an earlier arrest in Bullard, TX. Mrs. Rassi was pulled over by Bullard PD on Highway 69, in the wee morning hours back in October 2007. She was offered 2 1/2 years probation, a thousand dollar fine and community service. And the story has been cached away from public scrutiny.
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  D.Raissi (Courtsey Smith County, TX)

Smith County, Texas:

Precinct 1 Constable Henry Jackson  recently facing 10 State charges, ranging from felony tampering with governmental records, official oppression and sexual harassment of a female deputy. Constable Jackson had his bond lowered after an alleged violation, i.e. he continue to operate his unlicensed security company. His bond was originally set at $1 million.

Constable Jackson’s criminal trials began in August, but was postponed for the more sensational “Mineola Swingers’ Club” trial in Smith County. Felony corruption charges were completely dropped during an impromptu meeting with State and County attorneys and Jackson’s defense team. According to the Tyler, TX newspaper, Jackson pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges and was fined $100. He must complete an overly excessive 6 months probation and 200 hours of community service before returning to work without a criminal record. Constable Henry Jackson runs unopposed in Smith County’s Pct.1 during November’s elections. And that is East Texas politics at its finest hour!

Whitehouse, Texas:

Timothy Adcock, age 25, of Whitehouse, TX pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography on Tuesday, July 15, 2008 in Tyler’s federal court. He is facing 10 years in federal prison. Having a cousin or two in the prosecutor’s seat at the Rusk, Texas courthouse gives Cherokee County’s variety of counterfeit Christians, wife beating sociopaths and pedophiles absolutely no culpability. Contrasted with Smith County officials who admit child abuse is on the rise in the area.

Henderson County, Texas:

Inmates within the Athens, TX jailhouse are suing Henderson County authorities on a variety of health and sanitation issues. Inmates named in the federal class action suit are seeking punitive damages for neglect.

Shelby County, Texas:

A federal lawsuit claims that Shelby County officials working out of Tenaha, TX have been targeting minorities and motorists during obvious ‘asset seizure’ practices. Innocent people have been forced to sign over their personal effects during traffic stops in the county, to avoid being charged with “money laundering.”

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  Tenaha, Texas is on a major drug route.                                                    US 59

The most recent case to make through the well-disposed US Eastern District Court is 2:2008cv00288 Morrow v. City of Tenaha Deputy City Marshal Barry Washington, et al  

The East Texas media has been approvingly quiet in the past when it came to small towns’ “Highway Robbery.” An example that barely saw the light: in 2007, Shelby County Assistant Auditor Marilyn Lout, age 70, stole nearly $200,000 from the county’s Indigent Health Care Fund. Mrs. Lout, a cancer patient and grandmother, had been funneling money to her daughter-in-law in Hardin County. The Texas Attorney General’s office seized other diverted monies and assets of unnamed individuals after a raid on Lout’s Shelbyville, TX home. Marilyn Lout quietly accepted a plea bargain with Shelby County prosecutors of 10 years probation after threatening to “tell all.” This poor East Texas grandma meant business and the sympathetic media in the region has all but buried the misappropriation and theft of taxpayer money.

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Marilyn Lout, Shelby County TX auditor

It has come to light that Shelby County officials have been supplementing their county salaries with over $3 million in seized money and property from motorists. The Shelby County officials named in the Morrow lawsuit are not part of a wider Drug Task Force. US Hwy 59, a notorious corridor for drugs from Mexico, travels through greater East Texas and downtown Tenaha.

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                         Tenaha, TX in Shelby County

The back roads of East Texas are prime sources of undocumented revenue for local law enforcement and officers of district courts. The shakedown of out-of-state travelers has been going on for decades in the Piney Woods.  And as they say, there are plenty of narcotic interdiction officers along this route willing to violate the 4th Amendment.

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US 59 between Marshall and Jefferson, TX [courtesy Wikimedia]

The best advice to motorists traveling this area of East Texas-

 Don’t go. Turn around and go home.

Lon Morris coach arrested for child porn at Cherokee County Jr. College.

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Warning: Cherokee County Texas institutions are bastions of child exploitation and employ purveyors of child pornography.The mass exodus of Rusk Independent School District faculty members earlier this year is based upon the revelation that protected locals and administration officials with a penchant for photography have been under FBI scrutiny for years- stemming from the 2001-2002 Department of Justice crackdown of Palestine, Texas resident Mark Bates – the Webmaster of a worldwide e-mail child pornography ring originating from Internet servers in Anderson and Cherokee Counties.  Why did the Rusk High School principal and all those Rusk ISD teachers and coaches turn in their resignations?

The FBI sting called “Operation Candyman” netted individuals throughout the country, including an A&M cadet in Brownsville and two men from the Houston,TX area. 89 subscribers total were indicted. Mark Bates, age 33 of Palestine, TX was sentenced in December 2002 to 30 years prison for being the mastermind and moderator of the website used to download images federal prosecutors called “absolutely appalling in the depth of their depravity.”  Many arrested subscribers to Mark Bates’ email group  (such as Toby Barnett from Lufkin, Texas) were people ‘holding positions of trust with frequent contact with children.’  Mark Bates had two prior child molestation convictions and a history of mental disorders.

The ongoing cover up of this type of depraved and illegal activity should show the rest of the state just how duplicitous Cherokee County Texas really is. Especially when local officials pretend to have no knowledge of kiddie porn being distributed from computers owned by the school district. A place where under the guise of fake evangelicalism, the images of broken and bloody bodies of children have been traded like Green Stamps on the Internet for decades. While at the same time Cherokee County district attorney Elmer Beckworth offers probation to a Rusk Texas man who mutilated his own 12-month old daughter, and the district court voraciously accepts any and all plea bargains to over 3 dozen registered sex offenders within the county. Mark Bates’ child porn ring of 6 years ago apparently never ceased to exist outside the area, with ongoing federal sentences (such as  Jeffrey Scott Ray of Nacogdoches and Toby Barnett of Lufkin, TX) never making it to the pressroom.  The list continues.

Jacksonville, Texas:

Lon Morris College’s  head golf coach  Barry Dean Griffin, age 38, has been arraigned in federal court for possession and distribution of child pornography. Coach Barry Griffin was arrested Monday, June 9, 2008 after surrendering to federal authorities in Tyler, Texas. According to the June 10, 2008 issue of the Tyler Paper, Lon Morris faculty member Barry Griffin :  “has been charged by complaint for allegedly possessing and distributing child pornography on May 30 in Cherokee County [Texas]. If convicted, he could face 5 to 20 years in prison for the distribution charge and up to 10 years in prison for the possession charge.”

Monday’s appearance by Griffin in front of Tyler, TX based US Magistrate Judge John Love was reported here first. He has not been formally indicted.

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Lon Morris College coach Barry Dean Griffin

Barry Griffin is a junior college Kinesiology instructor and coach for Jacksonville, Texas based Lon Morris and has been since 2005. The Lon Morris men’s golf team  took fourth place in a recently held NJCAA tournament in Huntsville, Alabama, with hotel accommodations arranged by the college. Griffin has also traveled out of state to Daytona, Florida where he accompanied the Lon Morris College girl’s golf team , who took a 4th place prize at the women’s NJCAA national championship games.

Similarly, the Jacksonville home of Rusk ISD drama coach Harold “Bo” Scallon was raided last year by federal authorities on a tip from the Longview, TX police department. The tip being that the High School teacher was distributing child pornography over the Internet. His personal laptop, school computer and hard drives were confiscated by the FBI. Scallon pleaded guilty on April 4, 2008 in federal court to possessing over 150 sadomasochistic images of minors. He taught for the Rusk Independent School District for nearly 30 years and with parents’ blessings, participated in numerous overnight ‘theater camps.’ Due to a plea agreement, his child porn distribution charge was dropped by federal prosecutors, though he still faces decades in federal prison. Certainly the community and school administrators will rally around to petition for Mr. Scallon’s early release and leniency prior to his sentencing date being reported. As they did with Alto, Texas postmaster Herbert Dominguez, prior to his federal sentencing for stealing $27,000 of United States Post Office material- but never reporting it.

Local Cherokee County, Texas media portray Rusk High School Theater class’ Bo Scallon official retirement and contractual obligations to the school district as ending in April 2007, prior to the FBI raid. However, Harold “Bo” Scallon’s continual employment with the Rusk ISD was apparent to the FBI because investigators seized his company computer from the Rusk High School and examined its hard drives. Forensics on his computers uncovered massive files storing violent and graphic depictions involving children.

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mugshot of Rusk,TX teacher Harold “Bo” Scallon

The ongoing out-of-county reports of federal investigations compared to the nonexistent media coverage, nor local outcry, begs the question: Has Cherokee County, Texas always been a child molestation and child pornography refuge? Local offenders certainly do not have to worry about prison time if they cut deals with the Cherokee County District Attorney’s office after falling in the hands of Elmer Beckworth .

View the locations of registered child molesters living steps from the Rusk Texas courthouse and Rusk Texas Jr.-Sr. High Schools mapped on a website called FamilyWatchdog .                                              

Found at: http://www.familywatchdog.us                                                                                                

Infant molesters (whose victims are as young as 1 to 6 years-old) all handed probation and local Adult Supervision by the Cherokee County district attorney’s office -and not spending one day in prison.

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 [known registered Rusk, TX sex offenders – courtesy of Family Watchdog]

As a footnote, Harold “Bo” Scallon was sentenced on Tuesday June 17, 2008 in the US District Courts to 6 1/2 years federal prison time for possessing Internet child pornography. He will remain under parole supervision for 5 years after completing his federal prison term. Had the Rusk ISD faculty member actually acted on his sick fantasies and molested a Jr. High student, then the Cherokee County district attorney would have offered Scallon a few months probation (just like Elmer Beckworth’s office did for Chris Hennessy, a Rusk Texas patrol officer offered a paltry probation sentence of months instead of years for raping a Rusk ISD Jr. High girl in 2004).  Or Cherokee County prosecutors would simply ignore the problem like the community and Rusk school board has for the last 30 years of Harold “Bo” Scallon’s teaching career.  The world may never know how many deals were struck to keep this guy’s perverted pastimes out of the Rusk ISD school bulletin and news.

Also buried in the archives and the local School Board meeting minutes is a report of another Rusk ISD school teacher and former Jacksonville High School faculty member, Brian Basse sentenced to 3 years TDCJ time in 2007 for sexual contact with a student. Explicit Instant Messages and photos were recovered from his laptop computer by the FBI. Basse had been a Rusk Texas school teacher for 7 years, before relocating from the Jacksonville ISD. Brian Basse’s 36 month sentence (which he may serve 80% of) was handed to him from the 2nd Judicial District Court in Rusk, TX.

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And don’t forget about Josh Allen music teacher at the Jacksonville Christian Academy and youth minister for the Tyler Street Baptist Church being sentenced in 2007 to 4 years for possession of child pornography- over 600 graphic and violent images. Tyler Street Baptist Church is a long time polling place for voters in Cherokee County’s Precinct No. 15. The US District Court “noted that Allen has no past criminal history and that he had the support of his church – factors in issuing the relatively lenient sentence.”   Great.     Gregg County Texas charged Josh Allen for his porn distribution into their county, since Cherokee County Texas failed to do so. A local investigation was not required from the source because, as Allen told Federal Judge Leonard Davis during his January 4, 2007 sentencing, local authorities believed the choir director still “had an opportunity to be part of the solution to the problem” of child porn being distributed via the Internet from Cherokee County, Texas. Allen received the same lack of media attention coupled with an outpouring of local support as did Jeffrey Scott Ray and Toby Lynn Barnett. Ray’s residence in Nacogdoches, TX was raided by federal authorities in 2006 and his sentencing not reported; Jeffrey Ray Scott got 70 months in federal prison.  Toby Barnett was charged with possession of child porn and given 3 years probation in 2002 for “not having a prior criminal record,” even though he had been convicted in Nacogdoches, TX for assault in 1996.

Just do a comparison on how the legal system operates 40 miles away in Smith County, Texas. For instance, the recent Wednesday June 18, 2008 sentencing of Daniel Wayne Tidwell, age 29 of Tyler, in the 241st District Court doling out 50 years state prison time. This is after Tidwell pleading guilty to the sexual assault of a 15 year-old girl. Daniel Tidwell did have prior felony convictions, but regardless was facing 5 years to life for the rape.

Don’t forget the crack down on the Mineola Swinger’s Club that has made national news, either. The third defendant out of a string of arrests, Patrick “Booger Red” Kelly , a foster parent, is on trial for drugging children 9 years-old and younger and forcing them to perform strip club-esque dances for patrons of Mineola, Texas’ honky tonk. A version of what Cherokee County, Texas’ counterfeit Christians have been doing for decades: exploiting children and getting away with it. Smith County CPS removed the children from the homes of participants beginning in 2004 when it became apparent drug use and sexual abuse was occurring in the “deeply religious community.” Also awaiting trial are Dennis Boyd and Rebecca Pittman; and Jimmy Dale and Shelia Darlene Sones. Local swingers in the East Texas sex ring Jamie Pittman and Shauntel Loraine Mayo were convicted and sentenced to life in prison earlier in May, for their involvement in making children perform sex acts on stage.

An even better recent comparison would be the 2006 trial in Smith County of a preacher named Jefferson Marion Moore, age 58 at the time, also the Dogwood City Daycare and Preschool operator convicted of molesting a 6 year-old girl left in his care. He was a full time pastor for the Dogwood City Chapel, or “Brother Jeff” as they called him.  Jefferson Moore was convicted and sentenced to LIFE in prison for the rape he committed. Moore had been indicted on three counts of sexual assault of a minor involving a 6, 7 and 4  year-old. “Brother Jeff” Moore was also charged with retaliation after an altercation with Smith County prosecutors during courtroom deliberations and given 10 extra years. On the brighter side, the Tyler Paper reports in its June 25, 2008 edition that Jefferson Moore died of “natural causes” in his cellblock earlier this month after serving 2 years in prison. Dogwood City, Texas is a small unincorporated community on Lake Palestine and ideal retirement spot for district judges, located on the Cherokee County / Smith County border and 20 miles from downtown Jacksonville, Texas. No probation offers or lenient sentences for this child molester; the Smith County community certainly did not rally in support of the only preacher and licensed babysitter in their tiny town. Incidentally, the United States Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday June 25, 2008 that it is unconstitutional for states to execute child rapists. That will certainly keep Cherokee County’s sexual predator population on a steady incline.

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 Pastor Jefferson Moore (deceased), daycare owner and child molester

In April 2005, the Kilgore, Texas newspaper The Kilgore News Herald began an expose, aptly named “Child Pornography Big Problem in East Texas,” on how pervasive the crime was becoming.

Next month, more East Texas child molesters off the streets and in federal prison, such as Franklin Albert Pearce of Wood County, Texas gets life for the sexual assault of a 6 year-old girl. William Allen Pipes of Gilmer, TX pleads guilty to distributing child porn and faces 10 years.

In local school news, the superintendent of Overton ISD Dr. Mark Stretcher, after “unexpectedly” resigning his post in January due to a “personal illness and pressure” and subsequently throwing the Overton, TX school district in disarray- why Dr. Stretcher has been charged with felony theft of public funds. Stretcher pleaded guilty to ‘theft in office’ on Friday June 27, 2008.  Beware Rusk County, Texas you are in a close second for most corrupt.

City of Rusk Texas bookkeeper indicted for embezzling $150,000 of government funds; wife of City of Jacksonville Texas Mayor Pro-Tem, Councilman District 1.

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Rusk Texas:

The Cherokeean Herald reports on its online March 12, 2008 issue that Rusk, TX city bookkeeper, Doris Robinson, wife of City of Jacksonville TX councilman and Mayor Pro Tem Hubert Robinson, has been indicted by  a Cherokee County TX grand jury for stealing over $150,000 from the Rusk TX water department. 
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City of Rusk Texas bookkeeper Doris Robinson

Mrs. Doris Robinson worked at Rusk’s City Hall located at 408 N MAIN ST as the city Permit and Billing Clerk until she was promoted to City Bookkeeper in February 2006. Prior to taking office the article cites, Doris Robinson allegedly embezzled water department monies over a 2 year period. An unnoticed theft of upwards of $150 thousand in a city with the population of 5000 citizens. The Cherokee County TX grand jury met the second week in March 2008 and Mrs. Robinson’s indictment was not reported by the District Attorney’s office.  The Cherokeean Herald reports it after the go-ahead from the District Attorney.

At printing The Jacksonville Daily Progress also has not printed the fact the wife of the city of Jacksonville’s Mayor Pro Tem had been indicted.  Councilman Hubert Robinson’s wife posted bond on Monday March 10, 2008. Mr. Robinson is an active member of the historical Sweet Union Baptist Church located in Jacksonville Texas.

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Councilman Hubert Robinson, Jacksonville TX (District 1)

After one year of misdirections, it is high time a grand jury was seated that was not designed to prolong the case into the millennia. The EDITOR doubts there will ever be a costly and embarrassing embezzlement trial; Doris Robinson will no doubt be granted immunity for spending the last year busily trying to pay back any missing funds, in restitution. Isn’t that always the way it always works when Cherokee County’s version of Christians get caught with their hands in the taxpayers’ coffers?

Alto Texas US Postmaster Herbert Michael Dominguez paid back nearly all the $27000 he stole from the post office and for his federal crime, Postmaster Dominguez gets to keep his federal pension if he successfully completes his one year probation sentence. Handed to him in late February 2008 by US District Judge Michael Schneider in Tyler, TX, because Dominguez was “such a good person who had never been in trouble before.”

 So when Cherokee County’s version of “dignitaries” commit federal crimes, citizens will only get a glimpse of it in the Tyler TX newspaper 100 miles away.

And it came to pass. Because the whole world is going to be reading about it here.

Rusk,TX police officer rapes Rusk ISD student; on probation and on the lam. Alto, TX Postmaster steals $27,000 from local Post Office. Rusk, TX teacher indicted on child pornography.

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Rusk Texas:

City of Rusk TX police officer, and former Cherokee County Sheriff Department jailer,  Christopher “Chris” Michael Hennessy was handed a 10 year probation sentence by Cherokee County TX District Attorney Elmer C. Beckworth, Jr. in 2004 after Hennessy sexually assaulted a female 15-year-old Rusk ISD student. Officer Hennessy absconded his Sex Offender Registration after later being charged with distribution of crystal meth and unauthorized use of a motor, according to a February 28, 2008 article in the Jacksonville Daily Progress. Rusk TX officer Chris Hennessy was also under investigation by the ATF for possession of explosives.

Officer Christopher Michael Hennessy was apprehended in Houston, TX by the US Marshals Service on Wednesday February 27, 2008. Hennessy had been working in the Houston area under an assumed name. Refer to Cherokee County Texas Criminal Docket; Case 16121 ; Indecency/Sexual Assault of child-Felony
THE STATE OF TEXAS vs HENNESSY, CHRISTOPHER MICHAEL
Filed 05/23/2005 – Disposition: 11/17/2005 Deferred adjudication
2nd District Court, District Clerk, Cherokee County TX.

And Criminal Docket Case 16681; Case 16682 in the 2nd District Court, Cherokee County, TX.

Obviously Hennessy’s deferred adjudication wasn’ t good enough for the rogue officer; deferred adjudication is a plea bargain agreement, as it is defined, that is not an formal guilty plea and is NOT a conviction. The charge remains on the defendant’s record, however all licensing, bonding and law enforcement, i.e. political affiliations remain untarnished if probation is served (or reduced by a sympathetic district judge).

Hennessy refused his Sex Offender Registration in Cherokee County, TX and violated his slap-on-the-wrist probation. The Cherokee County district judge would have terminated his probation; however Hennessy would have to first register as a Sex Offender. Officer Hennessy was 24 in 2004.

Elmer Beckworth believed Officer’s Hennessy’s reputation was more valuable than the raped 15-year-old Rusk Jr. High student by offering DEFERRED ADJUDICATION probation. Of course, the Cherokee County District Attorney is not held accountable in the local media for any of the COLLATERAL CONSEQUENCES of Chris Hennessy’s plea bargain; allowing Hennessy to continue the crystal meth trafficking into Beckworth’s hometown, possible bomb making and who knows what else before Officer Hennessy was nabbed by the Gulf Coast Violent Offenders Task Force.

Alto Texas: US Postmaster Herbert Michael Dominguez located in the tiny Alto, TX post office stole $27,000 worth of postage stamps and federal money orders, converting them into his own personal use. Similarly Dominguez’s indictment and crime was not reported by any Cherokee County Texas newspaper. It took the Tyler Texas paper to report the local indictment of Postmaster Dominquez in its February 27, 2008 issue. Dominguez had been being paying most of the stolen money back in restitution. U.S. Federal District Judge Michael Schneider in Tyler TX gave the thieving Postal Service agent 1 year adjudicated probation.
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What do these cases have in common? A Rusk TX police officer who molested a Jr. High girl and an unsupervised Postmaster in Alto TX both received deferred adjudicated probation for their crimes, both State and Federal. Both get to keep their TCLEOSE licenses and government pensions. Probation given in order to keep the sorid mess under wraps. Even after raping the coffers and thus taxpayers of their most precious commodity: their children and their privacy.

Criminal activity within Cherokee County’s post offices has been documented for years. In August 1997, DPS officer Joe Don Abernathy was lucky enough to have DWI and unlawful discharge of a weapon charges dismissed after an employee in the Rusk Texas post office smashed his vial of blood on it way to the Garland, TX DPS lab for alcohol tests.
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Aug. 21, 1997 Cherokeean Herald p.1

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Aug. 21, 1997 Cherokeean Herald p. 10A

 

A local Rusk TX woman named Linda Lanier had filed a complaint against Trooper Joe Don Abernathy in Feb. 1997 after Abernathy had chased the Lanier family down the back roads of Hwy. 84 in the middle of the night. The complaint stated the off duty trooper had shot at the Lanier family vehicle, on their way back from Boosier City, LA. The Rusk PD arrested Abernathy on U.S. 69 and found rifles, a shotgun and beer cans in Abernathy’s pickup. Abernathy requested a blood sample be drawn in lieu of a breathalyzer, and the sample was literally dropped off in the mail. The test tube containing the DUI arrest evidence was destroyed by the Rusk TX Postal Service. A common tactic observed with the roles have been reversed and a DPS officer cites a Cherokee County deputy for DUI. And of course the Cherokee County TX District Attorney’s office never took Abernathy’s “deadly conduct” case in front of a grand jury.

Trooper Joe Don Abernathy accepted Cherokee County’s County Attorney’s offer of reckless driving as was placed on minimal adjudicated probation. The horror the Lanier family endured the night of Feb. 9, 1997 has been long forgotten. Trooper Joe Abernathy presently works as a Senior Recruiter for the DPS office in Tyler, TX.

The personal use of public works by those assigned to protect and serve Cherokee County Texas has been covered up for decades. In a 1995 Cherokeean Herald article, Cherokee County Sheriff James Campbell denied his deputies partake in monitoring and recording inmates’ jailhouse pay phone calls. Complete with an incredulous and concocted story on fictitious inmates crank calling witnesses from their cellblocks.

 

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June 1, 1995 Cherokeean Herald p.1

 

Jan. 5, 2002 Houston Chronicle article from the AP highlights the State’s TDCJ policy of listening in and recording all jail inmates’ conversations, as a required duty performed by all Texas penal systems -and those like Sheriff James Campbell who are charged with doing so. In 1998 the TDCJ policy altered to allow privacy between inmates’ phone calls and their attorney-client privileges. That policy has certainly been ignored by the Cherokee County Sheriff Department and District Attorney’s office.  Cherokee County  also tells its citizens the Sheriff Department does not record its DETCOG established 911 calls either.
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Jan. 5, 2002 Houston Chronicle p.39A

The June 5, 1995 Cherokeean article citing the “telephone harassment” of bored Cherokee County inmates and how the poor Sheriff can’t “listen in” and put a stop to it – why that is a sharp contrast to the 12th Court of Appeals affirmation of one inmate’s recent threatening phone call to his wife. The case Kevin Wade Conner v. The State of Texas–Appeal from County Court at Law of Cherokee County was heard in Tyler on February 29, 2008 based upon the  ‘Dial H for Harassment’  scenario that actually took place. Kevin Conner was arrested in 2006 for public intoxication and during his one phone call to his wife, threatened to beat her up. Conner was subsequently charged with telephone harassment and the audio tape recorded phone conversation admitted into evidence at his trial, Cherokee County Court at Law (trial court case # 45,593).

Kevin Conner’s attorney filed an appeal in Tyler, refer to Case # 12-06-00311-CR, filed on 8/26/2006 in the 12th Court of Appeals, challenging the legality of tape recording the plaintiff’s phone call and admitting it into evidence.  The opinion states:
“The erroneous admission of the recording in question is nonconstitutional error. See King, 953 S.W.2d at 271. Nonconstitutional error that does not affect the substantial rights of the defendant must be disregarded. TEX. R. APP. P. 44.2(b). Such an error does not warrant reversal unless it had a substantial and injurious effect or influence in determining the jury’s verdict. See King, 953 S.W.2d at 271.”

The 12th Court of Appeals doesn’t get into the messy legality question as to whether it is legal or unconstitutional (nonconstitutional error / admission of egregious evidence, i.e. illegally gained evidence) to record jailhouse phone conversations. The deputy testified he “overheard” the threats that were decided not to be just “hearsay.”  And the Texas penal system allows jails to monitor the inmate accessible pay phones. That was good enough to admit the audio recording into evidence and convict Kevin Conner with “telephone harassment” based on the testimony of an eavesdropping deputy. Even though Sheriff James Campbell told the local newspapers in 1995 that the “law prohibits my deputies to listen in on” jailhouse phone calls. The Appellate Court says in 2008 recording and monitoring the Cherokee County Sheriff Department’s phone calls are “pursuant to the jail’s standard policy, the call was recorded without notice to either Appellant [Kevin Conner] or Conner [his wife].”
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June 1, 1995 Cherokeean Herald p.1

Wiretaps in the Liberty County TX courthouse, circa 2001:

Similarily, in 2001 Liberty County Texas Constable Craig Houghton  and Liberty Courthouse maintenance chief Thomas Neal Williford pleaded guilty to illegally wiretapping the courthouse telephones. County Commissioner Pct. 4  Toby Wilburn allegedly provided recording devices for Williford, et al to place on the phone lines of political adversaries within the courthouse. Constable Craig Houghton and Thomas Williford both were sent to 3 months in prison, and Commissioner Wilburn was acquitted in Nov. 2001 on wiretapping. Commissioner Wilburn claimed Constable Houghton had obtained a warrant from the court; the local jury bought the explanation of providing the phone surveillance equipment. Despite the fact that only the Department of Public Safety, the Texas Rangers and the FBI are the only entities that can legally monitor phone lines.

Prisons and jails are required to monitor inmates’ calls and terminate the surveillance during conversations with their attorneys. Constable Houghton and Thomas Williford were sentenced to 3 months federal prison and 2 years probation according to the Houston Chronicle. Both claimed the illegal phone taps were installed to “rid the courthouse of theft and corruption.”

Rusk Texas:

Longtime Rusk Texas ISD drama teacher Harold Earl “Bo” Scallon was indicted by a Federal grand jury in Tyler on Tuesday March 4, 2008 for possession and distribution of child pornography. The FBI raided the home of Harold Scallon in Jacksonville in July 2007 on a federal warrant based on a tip and ongoing investigation by the Longview TX police department. Scallon’s computer was seized, and alleged to contain illegal images of children engaged in sex. The Rusk Texas drama coach faces 20 years federal prison and fines for each count of distribution of child porn.

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Rusk Texas teacher H.E. “Bo” Scallon

According to a March 5, 2008 Tyler Paper article, federal prosecutors and the Rusk ISD superintendent’s office refused to acknowledge that Harold “Bo” Scallon was employed in the drama department up until the time he was indicted in federal court for possession and distribution of child pornography. Local newspaper deliberately refer to the theater teacher as “former” and “EX-teacher” even though Harold Scallon never formerly retired from the Rusk Texas school district. Conflicting dates of the alleged cyber crime are being reported. 2007 Rusk ISD Valedictorian Kinsey Gresham acknowledged Mr. Scallon’s presence in his students’ and fellow faculty members’  lives during her June 2007 graduation speech. “Bo” Scallon had worked over 30 years for the Rusk Texas Independent School District. In March 2007 another Rusk Texas and former Jacksonville ISD teacher, Social Studies’ Brian Edward Basse, was indicted for indecency with a minor, i.e. one of his students.

Out of county company representatives and those seeking open-records in the Cherokee County Texas courthouse may have experienced the frequent violation of the Texas Public Information Act. That is those requesting court records having to sign waivers or being asked for their own personal information before the court employee provides the requested documents. An article in the Dec. 30, 2002 Houston Chronicle titled “East Texas public data often elusive” shows East Texas law agencies were the least helpful and most confrontationale when it came to providing citizens access to open records.

County governments out of a 14 county survey conducted over a 4 month period in 2002, where shown to be cooperative in complying with the State’s open records laws. However, East Texas sheriff or police departments “resisted producing records 68% of the time” and complied with the State’s timeline for requests only 38% of the time. One researcher from the journalism department of UT Tyler was told she had to “earn the right to see documents see requested.” This is, unfortunately, the majority mindset of East Texan law enforcement. 

The Public Information Act states that any and all information regarding an arrest record and the name of the complainant are to be made available to the inquirying public. Texas law enforcement records are not exempt from public disclosure. Nor are property records at the Cherokee County courthouse.

Companies contemplating setting up operations in greater East Texas should consider the light sentencing for sexual assault of a minor by police officers, embezzlement of postal services and city government funds, road rage by a veteran DPS officer and the bonafide illegal wiretapping of constables and commissioners. The articles may be hidden in the news archives and the back of the minds of the residents; however they are the forefront of daily operations in Counties steeped in corruption. The disparate sentencing of minorities versus law enforcement caught red-handed and judgments against national companies should be thoroughly investigated by any business testing the job market in Cherokee County Texas. Company business calls will be intercepted, company mail rifled through by post office employees, their profits stolen via lawsuits and most importantly their children will be at risk from Cherokee County’s Rogues Gallery of child molesters enjoying their commuted probations.

As an April 29, 2007 Houston Chronicle article published by the Seattle Post titled “Civil Rights investigations decline as focus for FBI” states: for federal agencies keeping watch over rogue police officers, there has been in the last 5 years a 2/3rds drop in investigations of abusive police officers and hate crime purveyors. “You’re going to have officers getting away with, in some cases, literally murder.” Especially in East Texas where victims are portrayed as “nutcases” and/or transient drug addicts by the local media. And their stories buried with their remains in a nearby National Forest.

Whistlin’ Dixie in the 21st Century. Solved murder bad for Angelina County Sheriff? Tyler man gets bail revoked for 1st violation.

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It’s 2008, and the Cherokee County, TX media is still doing their darndest to gloss over the arrest record of its law enforcement and abject failure protecting its scant 47,000 citizens. This observation is not the result of a “fishbowl effect” of a disproportionate number of arrests of Cherokee County law enforcement, as compared to larger counties. Sure one constable gets sentenced to 10 years in federal prison, but Cherokee County only has four precincts. Sure one patrolman gets sentenced to 17 years in federal prison, but the city of Jacksonville, TX has only ten cops; and 1/2 of them have been investigated by the FBI in the last 5 years. The fact is the corrupt political structure of the county is so ingrained, things are only going to get worse the more the US Attorney’s office scrutinizes the region. These people won’t be giving up their government paychecks without a fight and their favorite tactic is to use the local paper to frighten minorities contemplating federal civil rights lawsuits.

Cherokee County honored its Civil War traditions in early December 2007 with a local Sons of the Confederate Veterans hoopla complete with a General Robert E. Lee award, President Jefferson Davis award and General Stonewall Jackson award going to the most lilywhite Rebeller. Candidates for the Abraham Lincoln and M.L.K. award were apparently not invited. This ain’t just a Civil War memorial, you know what I mean?
View the Alto, TX Confederate States of America chapter on the internet.

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There is no thinly veiled agenda in the local ‘heritage defense league.’ Or as local chapters of the SCV call it: “The Northern War of Aggression, the true history of the South.”
But then again there is no historical reenactments or literature provided either at their clandestine meetings on taxpayer property. Other than the local Cherokeean-Herald insulting their black readers with a blasé contention that the Confederacy shouldn’t be indentified with the KKK. But then again, telling their readers who the members of the White Brotherhood are. Printing this redneck rubbish solely for the Martin Luther King holiday and upcoming Black History month. And displaying it at the city of Alto, Texas Public Library Conference Room.

To outsiders this type of Rebel Rousing would appear to be typical East Texas race baiting. However to the large number of black Americans living in the area, it is designed to have a deeper psychological impact. The message is crystal clear.

Without delving back to the turn of the century, we will take a brief look at Cherokee County, TX retrospectively over the last 18 months. Go down the list and tell yourselves Cherokee County, Texas isn’t corrupt. What a great year for the taxpayer.

Cherokee County Texas (2006 to 2007):
Constable Pct. 3 Randall Thompson pleads guilty in March 2006 for possession and distribution of 108 grams of crystal meth after ‘evading’ his duties as district court bailiff. Thompson was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison after his ‘resignation.’ Thompson had been appointed as deputy constable by Cherokee County commissioners and had been elected Constable Pct. 3 in 2004. The Texas Association of Counties (TAC) gives a description of Constable Randall Thompson’s duties he perform while manufacturing and distributing meth.

  • subpoena of court witnesses;
  • acting as bailiff for the 369th District and officer of the court;
  • process of service and executing judgments;
  • patrolling;
  • assisting criminal investigations and drug raids; and
  • acting as executive officer for the Justice of the Peace.

You, the lowly taxpayers are supposed to believe that after being elected as Constable, Thompson never worked a single day in the Rusk, TX courthouse or Hodges Unit. You are to believe that in a town that small, where everybody knows what you ate for supper the night before, that :
NO ONE in the district court or county commissioner’s office knew that Constable Thompson had been arrested for drug dealing –
AND they didn’t know where Thompson was before his federal arraignment?

As a matter of fact, a Failure to Appear hearing in the 369th district court was convened a day before Randall Thompson’s federal indictment “Because they hadn’t seen their bailiff for 2 years…” A constable who was appointed by Cherokee County commissioners in 2002 then elected to office in 2004, all the while working as a correctional officer and bailiff in Rusk, Texas. It would take a court hearing to remove an elected official, however Cherokee County was apparently pleased with Constable Thompson’s service until the feds caught him dealing crystal meth and indicted him. Pleased enough to keep paying his salary and lawyer fees. But of course they never met the guy, had him over for dinner or took him to the deer lease—hell, he didn’t show up for work for 2 years… Must’ve been driving that “Cherokee County” marked SUV down to the valley each week to deal drugs “to pay his child support.”
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Constable Pct. 3 Randall Thompson circa July 2005, tells KLTV Channel 7 Tyler-Longview-Jacksonville, TX in an expose’ on how he spends his gas money “dealing with illegal dumping, serving warrants, making traffic stops and arrests.” Looks like he’s on his way to work.

However, hours before Thompson’s federal indictment for drug dealing, it became more expedient for the district court and county commisioners to distance themselves from their guy they had appointed in 2004 to serve their wealthiest precinct. It is this type of perpetuated lying that is intrinsic in Cherokee County Texas political culture. Decades of the same nonsense reprinted and linked to here.

Anderson and Cherokee County crisis centers (located in Palestine and Jacksonville, TX) lost state funding in September 2007 along with losing private grant funding and federal funding in November 2007. Due in large part to the city of Jacksonville’s handling of the Larry Pugh rape attacks on Cherokee County women. In December 2007, the centers were temporarily saved when $159,000 was granted through a discretionary fund via the governor’s Criminal Justice Division and lobbying efforts of state Senator Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville).

State District 3’s former senator Drew Nixon (Rep.-Carthage) and his run-ins with law have also been swept under the carpet. Nixon retired his state senate seat in 2000 after being charged with soliciting a prostitute in Austin and was indicted by a Panola County grand jury in July 2007 for fixing the Panola County Fresh Water Supply District board election. Drew Nixon’s latest state charge is official oppression for his “abuse of office.” However, District 11 State Representative Chuck Hopson’s (Rep.-Jacksonville) 2002 campaign treasurer once married to a convicted burglar apparently wasn’t an issue for the papers, either.

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TX State District 3

In more horror stories in the month of September 2007, former decorated Jacksonville, TX patrolman Larry Pugh sentenced to over 15 years in federal prison for rape and retaliation, also linked to the skeletal remains of one of his missing federal complainants.
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convicted Jacksonville, TX police officer Larry Pugh

New Summerfield hired Michael Meissner as Chief of Police in March 2007. Meissner was subsequently fired for his lack of current TCLEOSE certification and continues to seek employment in law enforcement in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex.
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Michael Meissner and friends [courtesy Ellis County Observer]

Local media interpret the hiring of Meissner as a simple mistake in a formal background check, placing the blame on Meissner for not reporting his silly little TECLEOSE reprimands. Why would Meissner need a peace officer license when interns for the district attorney’s office can walk up and down the hallways of the Rusk, TX courthouse pretending to have passed the State Bar exam?

$150,000 stolen from the Rusk, TX Water Department by a city employee in March 2007. The community was lied to about the embezzlement case going to a Cherokee County grand jury in September 2007. In December 2007 the Rusk City Council was still waiting for a resolution of the case and an indictment. District Attorney Elmer Beckworth’s excuse was a potential conflict of interest with a member of his October 2007 grand jury being related to the case…as if that was the first relative being seated on a Cherokee County grand jury before. Only when the Texas Rangers are involved in the case.

In April 2007, the city of Jacksonville, TX settled a police brutality suit with victim Larry Hinton after Hinton was beaten, tasered and his teeth kicked out during 2004’s Tomato Bowl riot. Hinton had been acquitted of “misdemeanor charges of interfering with an officer’s duties” after the 2004 High School homecoming brawl. Misdemeanor charges that resulted in Mr. Hinton and his pregnant wife being kicked, beaten and falsely put on trial. Interfering with a police officer’s arrest is actually a felony; hence the protest on the Rusk courthouse steps in January 2006.

Mr. Larry Hinton not only had his teeth kicked out and his pregnant wife beaten up, but  HE was placed on trial by Cherokee County Attorney Craig Caldwell. The charge of  “interfering” during the race riot based on the report of a police officer out on federal bond for rape AND during which the affiant (Jacksonville TX police officer Larry Pugh) was stalking and disposing of his federal complainants.

Apparently the word of a rapist facing 144 months in federal prison is worth more than a black man and his pregnant wife’s, enough to waste the taxpayer’s dollars to tell the county what a good job Pugh and others did starting the 2004 Tomato Bowl riot. View Larry Pugh’s March 2007 federal sentencing on the Department of Justice press release NOT published by Cherokee County media: http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/txe/news_release/news/EDTX_PUGH030107.html

However, the Jacksonville Daily Progress did report that Cherokee County Sheriff Deputy Regina Battley had the excessive force suit against her, filed by the Hintons and a female victim, dismissed in December 2006.

Civil Rights Class Action Suits include Sandra Rene Roca, Tonya Burns, Debra A Williams, Felicia A Colbert, Della Tyler, Wanda Wilson and Felicia Mosley v . Larry Pugh, the city of Jacksonville, Texas et al, No. 6:2007cv-00081(US Dist. Ct., E.D. Texas, Tyler Division, February 15, 2007). These women are the other handful of Cherokee County rape victims seeking settlements with Officer Pugh’s employers. Never read about them anywhere did you?

Yes, 2007 has been a typical year for Cherokee County, Texas but nothing to cheer about. Local officials hiding under the pretext of false legal statutes and pretending they never hired nor worked with the above mentioned criminals. A sharp contrast to the Fort Worth, TX police department who fired 2 police officers on December 20, 2007. Officers Craig Murrah and David Babb are separately accused of spanking a female detainee and Babb for groping the 9 year-old daughter of a co-worker. Babb had been indicted in September 2007 for the fondling; Murrah is awaiting the Tarrant County grand jury and had prior indecency complaints.
Based on the “merits of the case,” Fort Worth police chief Ralph Mendozza terminated both policemen prior to their trials. Cherokee County would have promoted the pair.

In other corrupt news for the beginning of the New Year.

Jacksonville, TX:
The Eastern District Federal Grand Jury in Tyler indicted Jacksonville, TX resident Kenneth Dale Kern on January 11, 2008. Kenneth Kern was True Billed for theft of social security money and government property. The indictment alleged that Kern fraudulently accepted $32,000 in Social Security disability benefits between 2002 and 2007 and did not disclosed to government administrators his job with Jacksonville employer Nicky Joe Tarrant. Kenneth Kern also faces 10 years for making false statements to federal agents. Cherokee County, Texas media outlets, probably due to Kern’s Jacksonville employer being related to members of the Jacksonville, TX ISD school board , the captain of the Jacksonville Fire Department and a Rusk, TX correctional officer, have not reported Kenneth Kern’s federal indictment. Kern apparently had worked for the Tarrant family business for years while simultaneously receiving government disability checks.


Upshur County, TX deputy indicted; Deputy Richard Louis Bridgewater age 29 was indicted in December 2007 on 5 counts of child indecency. The deputy had admitted to inappropriate contact with an 11-year-old girl. Bridgewater is being held in neighboring Titus County jail as a “safety precaution.” He had a brief stint with the Overton, TX and Big Sandy police departments. Bridgewater now faces 20 years in prison if convicted.

Smith County, TX:
Suspended volunteer firefighter Austin Harden age 17 was arrested December 24, 2007 for posing as a fireman at a house fire on FM 2493. Harden had also been arrested in August 2007 for impersonating a police officer.

Hale County, TX:
A prison guard at the Wheeler Unit in Plainview, TX has been indicted for murder by a Hale County grand jury on December 24, 2007. Jose Rodriguez was charged in the death of inmate Paul Ray Judia after Judia died from head injuries sustained in his cell.

Kilgore, TX:
Gregg County correctional officer Eric Sanders age 24 arrested December 11, 2007 for passing illegal drugs to inmates in the North Jail facility.

Rusk County, TX:
Chief Deputy Daniel “Dusty” Flanagan in Tyler Federal Court Wednesday January 9, 2008. Flanagan had his sentencing hearing postponed. Chief Deputy Flanagan and Lt. Johnny Leon Davidson Jr., both pleaded guilty in July 2007 for assaulting Shawn Wright will in custody. The former sheriff deputies and Rusk County are facing excessive force civil suits by Wright AND sexual harassment suits by a former female deputy. U.S. District Judge Michael Schneider postponed Flanagan’s federal sentencing (he is facing 10 years for the police brutality against Mr. Wright) until the civil matter of restitution is resolved. Flanagan and Davidson concocted fraudulent police reports to cover their actions.

In neighboring Cherokee County, TX , the assaulting police officers would have been promoted and the fraudulent police statements held up as irrefutable proof by the district attorney’s office as in the case of Mr. John Brown of Alto, Texas. Officers with a history of excessive force are even endorsed to run in elections as Cherokee County Constables now that have proven their mettle in federal court. With a few minor drug busts under their belts and proving their willingness to violate the law can get some cushy jobs. Remember, the Trade Winds motel in Jacksonville, TX provides “anonymous” tips to Cherokee County deputies; not an illegal phone drop placed on a motel room. Tips are called “anonymous” by Cherokee County deputies when phone lines are illegally monitored.

Then again, they may be knocking down your door when an “anonymous tip” from the jailhouse leads to a 911 call being generated in a lightning storm. That’s called intelligence gathering; it’s “against the law” for Cherokee County sheriff deputies to “listen in” to private citizens phone calls, not inmates in the county jail. Therefore the sheriff’s office can have it both ways- deny they monitor jailhouse payphones and tell the FBI a jailbird gave them information.

Henderson County, TX:
Mayor Gene Bearden of Log Cabin, Texas (pop. 733) under investigation for personal use of an EXXON credit card. The case had been investigated by the Texas Rangers and handed over to the Henderson County district attorney.

 Gregg County, TX:
Correctional officers Johnny W. Adair and Michelle Parvin were arrested Monday December 17, 2008 for passing banned tobacco products to inmates in the Gregg County jailhouse. This comes after the arrest of fellow Gregg County jailer Chris Sanders one week earlier for delivery of contraband to prisoners. All three were terminated after taken in for questioning according to Sheriff Maxi Cerliano.

Tyler, TX:
Tyler police officer Scott Bradley resigned after a DWI charge on December 5, 2007. Apparently Officer Bradley had been out drinking that night with a visiting Los Angeles detective scheduled to testify in Smith County court. Officer Bradley was arrested at the scene after crashing his car into a telephone pole. He was later placed on administrative leave, and then subsequently quit his position. Bradley was a decorated cop and was recognized by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in May 2007 for his service breaking up a nationwide methamphetamine ring. Officer Scott Bradley was part of a federal drug task force operating in Tyler, Texas.
Had Officer Bradley been operating in Cherokee County, TX to the south, then he could have had a relative in the Rusk post office smash his blood sample on its way to the Austin DPS. His drunken melee’ would have never made the local papers either. In fact oodles of accolades would have spilt from the Cherokeean Herald pressroom.
No one would be the wiser….

Nacogdoches, TX:
Tnisha Steadman, correctional officer for the Nacogdoches County sheriff’s department was fired and arrested Tuesday January 8, 2008 for passing a cell phone to an inmate. Ms. Steadman’s posted her bond at $5000. Sheriff Thomas Kerss commented on having to arrest one of his staff members, “We don’t put ourselves above the law.”

Lufkin, TX:
Angelina County Sheriff candidate and Lufkin police officer Trent Burfine has posted on his campaign website autopsy pictures of a slain local teenage girl. Pictures he says proves the mishandling of the 2003-2005 murder case by Angelina County investigators. The graphic crime scene photographs have caused controversy in the sheriff race, however officer Trent Burfine was within the state’s open records laws when the murder case was closed.
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Officer Burfine contends on his webpage Angelina County Sheriff Ken Henson potted a murder investigation of the slain teenager after autopsy reports indicated toxic levels of crystal meth present in her system. Even though her body had extensive bruising and no needles or other indications of an overdose (or suicide) was discovered. The photos show how sheriff investigators contaminated the crime scene. The Lufkin police department took up the murder investigation, resulting in multiple convictions in 2005. A murder Angelina County refused to even consider. This attitude is shared in neighboring Cherokee County, Texas when it comes to investigating the death of undesirables. Why spend the money?
It is unfortunate that Sheriff Henson decided it wasn’t in his 2003 budget to investigate the murder of Candice Alexander. Neighboring Cherokee County shares the same mentality as when 2 Jacksonville, TX women went missing prior to Larry Pugh’s federal trial. They collectively treat these women lower than roadside litter, and candidate Burfine should be commended for his exposure of this malfeasance. No murder investigation was needed up in Jacksonville, either. Of course no one up there ever challenges the established mindset or incumbents.

Case comparisons of the month-
State vs. Michael Frater (Smith Co. 2007) AND State vs. Michael Harris (Cherokee Co. 2005)
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Tyler, TX:
On November 15, 2007, 47 year-old Tyler, TX resident
Michael Edward Frater went on trial for “threatening” his estranged wife Ethel Gibson Frater. Unlike the case State v. Michael Harris in Jacksonville, TX, the Smith County district attorney’s office filed a motion to revoke Frater’s bail on an unrelated probation violation after Frater allegedly made one threatening call to his estranged ex-wife. In the similar scenario a few years earlier in Cherokee County, Michael Harris was out on felony bond for arson and continued to threaten, harass and trespass onto his ex-wife’s property. Mr. Frater had his bail pulled immediately; Mr. Harris had his bail reset during multiple hearings at the Rusk, TX courthouse, while simultaneously being escorted to drug treatment at the Rusk State Hospital.
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Michael Edward Frater

Mr. Frater’s bond was NOT set and reset and reset as Cherokee County did for Michael Harris; Mr. Frater was also not in custody or under State supervision. Frater had been paroled in 2006 from Tarrant County for a felony DWI and denied threatening his ex-wife.
Frater was put on trial by the Smith County district attorney for felony retaliation. Michael Frater was acquitted by a Smith County jury on November 16, 2007. Michael Harris continued his escalating domestic violence and murdered his ex-wife Faye Bell Harris of Jacksonville in 2003.

Michael Harris also accepted a plea bargin of life in prison and the family of the deceased was told Harris’ bonds just couldn’t be rescinded until Texas law was changed. Cherokee County blamed the 4th Amendment of the United States and the Texas constitution for deliberately resetting a drug informant’s bail, allowing Michael Harris out on the streets to eventually murder his former wife.

   

http://www.cherokeecountytexas.blogspot.com