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Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Sheriff's Office Statement in Regards to Daniel Lockhart is Like The Pot Calling the Kettle Black

See Blogger comments below the WHNT story.  Also, click on the URL below to watch the videos.
Former Morgan County jailer cleared of criminal charge, lawyer blasts Morgan County’s Sheriff’s Office investigation POSTED 7:37 PM, APRIL 24, 2018, BY BRIAN LAWSON, UPDATED AT 07:39PM, APRIL 24, 2018

DECATUR, Ala. --  A Morgan County judge Tuesday dismissed the tampering with government documents charge against former Morgan County jail warden Leon Bradley after two days of hearings that mainly focused on the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office investigation of the case.
It’s an especially complicated case, with allegations by the defense that law enforcement perjured themselves during the hearing, conducted an illegal wiretap and monitored sheriff’s office employees who might be talking to the FBI.
Its roots are in a long-running feud between Sheriff Ana Franklin and Morgan County Whistleblower blogger Glenda Lockhart.
Bradley faced a misdemeanor charge of tampering with government documents. Morgan County Sheriff’s Office investigators alleged Bradley had taken law enforcement records from the sheriff’s office, gave them to Lockhart and had law enforcement records at his home.
Bradley’s lawyers argued the search warrant used to search Bradley’s home was obtained through coercion of a confidential informant – Lockhart’s grandson --  who improperly gained access to a Morgan County blogger’s business.
He gathered documents while there, according to hearing testimony, and the documents gathered and photos he took served as a basis for the affidavit used to obtain the Bradley search warrant and a search warrant of Lockhart's business.
The informant – Daniel Lockhart – testified he received a “keylogger” from law enforcement officials and placed the recording software on his grandmother’s work and home computers.
The Morgan County Sheriff’s Office issued a statement Tuesday afternoon, saying it was disappointed the charges against Bradley were dismissed, “without a full and fair opportunity for the presentation of evidence as to whether Mr. Bradley broke the law of the State of Alabama by disseminating confidential, law enforcement information to non-law enforcement personnel, which information was not subject to public disclosure.”The Alabama Attorney General’s Office was prosecuting the case and agreed with the defense motion to dismiss the charges.
Defense attorney Robert Tuten, who defended Bradley with co-counsel Nick Heatherly was critical of the sheriff’s office investigation, arguing it was aimed at stopping the blog.
“This has been really wild, unbelievable in fact,” Tuten said. “It’s a classic example of law enforcement stepping over the line."
“The use of a keylogger on somebody’s private computer, first of all, is illegal, but that didn’t seem to slow ‘em down or stop ‘em. They obviously, from the testimony put it on more than one computer.”
The sheriff’s office denied any wrongdoing in the investigation, saying in its press release:
“It is important to note that much of the information on which both the investigation and warrant was based was obtained directly from computers at the Sheriff’s Office,” the statement reads.
“Nevertheless, it is the understanding of this Office that Daniel Lockhart admitted today under oath that he has lied on multiple occasions to different law enforcement personnel.  The Sheriff’s Office understands and appreciates Judge Thompson’s obvious concern with avoiding even the appearance of impropriety in a criminal prosecution based even in part on this kind of testimony.
“To be clear, however, the Sheriff’s Office unequivocally denies any improprieties in the course of the investigation of Leon Bradley.”
Tuten also pointed to testimony from two sheriff’s office investigators who admitted driving to the Huntsville FBI office and touring the parking lot, trying to identify any vehicles belonging to sheriff’s office employees.
“To surveil the FBI to see who they’re talking to,” Tuten said. “Now that can only be for one or two reasons, either they want to know who the witnesses are so they can intimidate them into keeping their mouth shut, or to figure out what the witnesses may say, so they can figure out how to cover their tracks to where it won’t be led back to them.”
The defense asked the court to hold Morgan County law enforcement officers in contempt related to their testimony.
But Morgan County Circuit Judge Glenn Thompson said he’d leave any contempt issues to others to handle.
Blogger Comments:  Whoever the sheriff's spokesperson is sure hasn't heard or doesn't know much about the sheriff and her fiefdoms.  Excerpts from WHNT 19 news below says that Daniel Lockhart admitted under oath that he lied to different law enforcement personnel on multiple occasions.  The sheriff and her Fiefdoms may have fared better if they had done the same thing and admitted all of their lying and conniving ways.  All I can say is damn Ana what do you call what you and your fiefdoms did?  It sounds like you and yours lied under oath to the judge as well as law enforcement officers.  Your guys spied on the FBI office to determine who was ratting you out.  Your guys planned on installing listening devices in my office and on my land line.  Who knows, maybe you did.  I hear Bones has connections...  You said under oath that you were not aware of ANY Keylogger software and didn't even know what it is until you heard about it in court.  That's a lie if we are to believe the Madison County Investigator and that of the Etowah County Sheriff's Investigator.  Ask me who I believe?  How soon we forget.  Oh! And by the way.  Didn't you have Keylogger Software installed on a lot of the Sheriff's Office Computers a few years back?  
“It is important to note that much of the information on which both the investigation and warrant was based was obtained directly from computers at the Sheriff’s Office,” the statement reads.
“Nevertheless, it is the understanding of this Office that Daniel Lockhart admitted today under oath that he has lied on multiple occasions to different law enforcement personnel.  The Sheriff’s Office understands and appreciates Judge Thompson’s obvious concern with avoiding even the appearance of impropriety in a criminal prosecution based even in part on this kind of testimony.
“To be clear, however, the Sheriff’s Office unequivocally denies any improprieties in the course of the investigation of Leon Bradley.”
Oh! And who was the rocket scientist among you that planned or hacked the break-in into Warden Bradley's private emails?  Have you folks ever heard of how to collect evidence legally? Get a dang warrant first.  The statement goes on to say that  "The Sheriff’s Office understands and appreciates Judge Thompson’s obvious concern with avoiding even the appearance of impropriety in a criminal prosecution based even in part on this kind of testimony."  That is definitely an understatement.  I am sure the judge heard enough BS during the hearing to last him a lifetime from more than one witness.  Ana will always live in Spin City. 

The Decatur Daily hits another home run

Folks, these past few days have enlightened me as just how far Franklin, Bones, Robinson, and Justin Powell would go to shut down the blog.  It appeared to me that as we discovered more and more information surrounding Greg Steenson, Franklin, Bones, Blake and a large number of Franklin's family and friends to include Franklin's daughter Alyssa Franklin, they were getting desperate to shut us down.  

Franklin and her fiefdoms could not shut the blog down because of our reporting on Priceville Partner's LLC so it appears they went as low as they could go by lying to a judge, trying to destroy those who knew about the corruption, and especially those willing to talk about the corruption.

We can't tell you how proud we are of those law enforcement officers who were brave enough to do the right thing.  Warden Bradley did not deserve what he has had to endure for the past 18 months.  

If there are folks out there who do not believe in the judicial system and honest law enforcement you should have spent some time in Judge Thompson's courtroom last Friday and this Monday.  Attorneys Tuten and Heatherly laid their case and called witnesses that tied together the who, what, when, where, how, and why the sheriff and her band of fiefdoms and their scheme to stop the whistleblowers from revealing additional information regarding them and their relationship with Greg Steenson and Performance as a whole.

Judge throws out charges against former Morgan warden

  • By Eric Fleischauer Metro Editor
  • Updated 

County commission looking for grant money to fund drug task force


At last, someone in the county is looking into finding grant money for the drug task force.  The county has been funding the task force to the tune of about $280,000 per year for the last four years.  Commissioner Long was quoted as saying (and this is classic tongue-in-cheek):

“It’s the sheriff’s responsibility (to apply for the grants), but she’s been tied up with other things in recent years, and apparently hasn’t done it,” Long said.

You can read the whole article at the link above.

The drug task force does important work and with the national interest in opioid abuse, there should be increased funding at the national and state level.  You can bet that some of it will find its way into agencies with grant funding in their mission statement.  But you gotta ask for it.   Since apparently nobody in the MCSO remembers how to do it, it makes sense to out-source the task.  And in the future, perhaps the new sheriff won't be 'tied up with other things'.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

More from Ashley Remkus

Judge dismisses case against fired warden, but won't hold Morgan sheriff in contempt

Ana Franklin
Although he dismissed the criminal case against fired jail warden Leon Bradley, Morgan County Circuit Judge Glenn Thompson has declined to hold contempt hearings against the sheriff and her deputies.
During a hearing that began Friday and culminated this morning, Bradley's lawyers sought to prove that Sheriff Ana Franklin and three of her employees lied to get warrants and have the warden arrested. Bradley was charged a misdemeanor, tampering with government documents, at the culmination of an investigation into whether he was leaking information to a local blogger. Today, Bradley said he walked away an "exonerated" man.
"I am extremely thankful for the truth coming out," Bradley told after the hearing.
A central question of the hearing was whether Franklin and her office illegally obtained evidence to get Thompson to issue search warrants during an investigation into Bradley and local blogger Glenda Lockhart. Thompson signed warrants in October 2016 for Franklin and her deputies to search Bradley's home and Lockhart's office.
Lockhart authors the Morgan County Whistleblower, a blog that's been critical of the sheriff and her office for years. Lockhart hasn't been charged with a crime. The judge today ordered that law enforcement return to Lockhart and Bradley any items that were seized during the 2016 searches."I think everything went well today, and justice will prevail," said Lockhart as she left the courthouse.
Bradley's lawyers, Robert Tuten and Nick Heatherly, have said they believe Franklin and her deputies were untruthful when they requested the search warrants. The lawyers have alleged Franklin and the deputies didn't tell the judge about paying an informant to install a surveillance software on Lockhart's computer.
"Law enforcement shouldn't cross the line and shouldn't mislead a judge," said Tuten after today's hearing. He said it took longer than expected, but he's glad Bradley has been exonerated. Asked if he's disappointed the judge denied a motion to hold contempt hearings, Tuten said, "That's not really our job to worry about that."
Lockhart's grandson, Daniel, was the informant who worked with the sheriff's office. He was called to testify today. Daniel Lockhart testified about the sheriff paying him $500 to gather information about his grandmother. Daniel Lockhart went into his grandmother's business after hours and installed a surveillance software, known as a keylogger, on his grandmother's computer, he testified. He claims he spied on his grandmother at the request of Franklin and deputies Blake Robinson and Robert "Bones" Wilson. Daniel Lockhart also claims another sheriff's employee, Justin Powell, provided the keylogger and showed his how to install it on his grandmother's computers.During testimony last week, Franklin vehemently denied knowing anything about the keylogger software. She claims she didn't find out about the keylogger until a recent federal court hearing at which there was testimony about the device. That testimony came during a hearing in a civil lawsuit that Glenda Lockhart has filed against the sheriff's office. The lawsuit accuses the sheriff and her deputies of illegally gathering evidence by sending Daniel to burglarize his grandmother's Falkville business, Straightline Drywall and Acoustical.
Because of Bradley's former position as the warden, the Morgan County District Attorney's Office recused from prosecuting the case. The Alabama Attorney General's Office took over.
The sheriff also said she didn't want the situation to appear like a conflict of interest, so she brought in an outside law enforcement agency to bring charges against the warden.
Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin sent Investigator Stephen McGlathery to probe the case for Morgan County. Using evidence gathered by Franklin's crew, McGlathery got a warrant for the fired warden's arrest.
On Friday, McGlathery -- one of 11 total witnesses to take the stand --testified that Franklin and her deputies "lied" and provided "piecemeal" evidence.
"I am most thankful for the court and the good law enforcement officers who did the right thing and had the courage to tell the truth," Bradley said after today's hearing. "Some of those guys were put in an awkward position. But they proved they're folks who will stand up and tell the truth."
The hearing was set after Bradley's lawyers filed motions for dismissal of the charge and for the evidence gathered by the search warrants to be thrown out. The AG's office agreed to dismiss the charge, but Bradley's lawyers said they wanted the judge to hear testimony about whether the sheriff's office mishandled the case.
The judge said today he wouldn't hold contempt hearings against Franklin, Robinson, Wilson or Powell. "I'm leaving that up to other people," he said. The judge didn't specify to whom he is leaving the possibility for contempt charges, though Morgan County District Attorney Scott Anderson and Assistant Attorney General Matt Hart were in the courtroom. Prosecutors have said they can't comment on the case.
Updated at 12:26 p.m.

Lying to a Judge because of a personal vendetta has gotten Sheriff Ana Franklin in hot water

Charges against former Morgan County warden dismissed

  • By Eric Fleischauer Metro Editor
  • Updated

Charges against former Morgan County warden dismissed Misdemeanor computer tampering charges against fired Morgan County Warden Leon Bradley were dismissed this morning.

Blogger Comments:  Folks, all we can say is thank you, Judge Thompson.  It doesn't surprise us the lengths Sheriff Franklin and her thiefdom deputies went to deceive the court.  Excerpts from the Decatur Daily below:
Circuit Judge Glenn Thompson immediately granted the motion of Bradley's lawyers after a day of testimony in which two Morgan County Sheriff's Office deputies provided testimony helpful to Bradley's defense. Today was the second day of testimony.
Deputy Zachary Dockery, an 11-year employee of the Sheriff's Office, testified he declined to provide surveillance equipment to Robinson for use in the business of blogger Glenda Lockhart because he was worried it would amount to criminal eavesdropping. He said he also told Robinson and Justin Powell, a Sheriff's Office information technology employee, not to hack into Bradley's personal emails without a warrant. 
Dockery testified the Sheriff's Office had installed a tracking device on Bradley's county vehicle.

Corrupt to the core

Folks, I am personally sickened at the testimony revealed in court this morning.  I was also surprised but not shocked to hear that plans were made to set up devices in my home to capture conversations and that one brave officer successfully stopped the action from occurring.  

It also saddens me that my grandson had to take a picture in our home to prove he was there.  The picture taken was of the memorial our family sat up in remembrance of our loved one that passed away.

The steps that were taken against me and Warden Leon Bradley go above and beyond anything the public could possibly believe.

Fired warden returns to court for hearing on Morgan sheriff's handling of leak investigation

Monday, April 23, 2018

In regards to Danny Kelso

Folks, we can't tell you enough that Blake Robinson is as low as they get.  The whistleblowers have always thought highly of Kelso.  It makes us sick that Bones and Blake conducted surveillance of the FBI to obtain information about those who may be going to the FBI office.

It angers me that Blake went to Kelso's house to question him.  Kelso is a decent guy and all this does for us is revealed once again what slimeballs Blake and Bones are.  

When will Blake and Bones realize they followed the wrong path full of empty promises from a deadbeat sheriff.

How sad this mess has become.  People willing to give up their families, careers, livelihood, and possibly their freedom.

Our best wishes to Danny for being a standup guy.

Food Funds Issue Is Not Going Away

Jail kitchen workers say donated, spoiled food keeps costs low for beach house sheriff

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Morgan sheriff still dealing with bankruptcy aftermath By Eric Fleischauer Metro Editor Apr 22, 2018 Updated 7 hrs ago

Blogger Comments can be seen in blue after excerpts from the Decatur Daily Article.

Excerpts from the Decatur Daily states that: 

"William Gray, a Birmingham lawyer who represents Franklin, Robinson and Lt. Robert “Bones” Wilson, said Saturday he did not attend the hearing, but based on media reports it appeared to go far afield from its narrow legal purpose.
“The issues should have been confined to those matters that were set by the judge to be heard before the judge,” Gray said of the testimony. “If I’m there to talk about a warrant on Mr. Bradley, I shouldn’t have to talk about issues on anything else.”
Folks, another great article from the daily.  It appears that Sheriff Franklin, Bones Wilson, and Blake Robinson's attorney William Gray is somewhat critical of the way the hearing is going on the motion to dismiss proceeding against Warden Bradley.  In my opinion, the case stayed right on track.  To fully understand what led up to how and why the warrants came about, it was necessary to explain what motivated the sheriff and her lead investigators.  The testimony revealed a lot about the methods and techniques the sheriff used in obtaining evidence to obtain the warrants.  Attorneys Tuten and Heatherly built the sequence of events up to the issuance of the search warrants in a manner that detailed how the sheriff and her co-conspirators obtained the warrants under false pretenses.  The law enforcement officers from Etowah and iMadison Counties testified truthfully.  They made it clear that they were told about the Keylogger software that was installed on the blogger's computers.   The Madison County Investigator said that he was told by the Morgan County law enforcement officers that they needed to analyze the data from the Keylogger Software to justify obtaining a warrant.   All in all, it was a solid presentation.  I expect to hear more of the same when the proceedings convene on Tuesday morning.  
Attorney Gray went on to say that he represents Sheriff Ana Franklin, Bones Wilson, and Blake Robinson in the Priceville Partners, LLC issues.  Since Bones and Blake were not charged by the Bankruptcy Trustee does that mean that they are worried about possible criminal charges?
It is embarrassing to think that Sheriff Ana Franklin, Bones Wilson, Justin Powell, and Blake Robinson represent the people of Morgan County.  They have almost successfully destroyed the reputation of the Morgan County Sheriff's Office.  Except for the fact that there are a lot of good employees, deputies, clerks, corrections officers, investigators, and Bili that came together to hold the sheriff's office together with true grit and determination.