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Friday, December 30, 2016
South Alabama couple sue Morgan sheriff for traffic accident By Keith Clines Staff Writer Updated 22 hrs ago
A Bay Minette couple has filed a lawsuit against Morgan County Sheriff Ana Franklin for injuries they received in a wreck when Franklin pulled in front of the couple while she was turning into a south Alabama gas station, according to the lawsuit and an accident report.
The lawsuit, filed by Hubbard Hall and Martha Hall in Baldwin County on Sept. 14, asks for an unspecified amount of compensation for the injuries and damages the couple suffered in the June 7 wreck they claim was caused by Franklin’s negligence and recklessness.
Martha Hall, 61, a passenger in the car drive by her husband Hubbard Hall, suffered a broken sternum, broken right hip, broken right hand, bruises and soreness, and had her teeth knocked out, said a letter from the law firm representing the Halls. Martha Hall has not been able to return to work in the parts department of Standard Furniture, said Britt Bethea, who is the Halls’ attorney.
Hubbard Hall, 64, suffered a broken nose, severe bruises on his face, a swollen and bruised left hand, injured ribs and back, and other bruises and soreness, the letter said.
Blogger Comments: We met Mr. Hall. What a pleasant older gentleman. A man who has worked his entire life in a factory along with his wife. They rode together ever single day. A very simple family. Along comes a rogue sheriff from Morgan County, Alabama who has no official business to be in Baldwin County other than a rendezvous with her new boyfriend Charley Mcnichol. What many of you may not know is that is where Franklin spent most of her time over the past year when she should have been running the Morgan County Sheriffs Office. Who told the Hall's attorney that Franklin was on vacation and that the Morgan County Sheriffs Office is not liable nor is the county insurance. Why did Franklin claim to the Trooper that she was self insured ?
Franklin declined Wednesday to comment on the lawsuit or wreck.
“We are involved in litigation regarding that wreck, so I cannot comment on that,” she said in a text message. “You have the county’s records and see that I complied with all procedures.”
Blogger Comments: Franklin's compliance began 7 1/2 hours after the accident? Why didn't Franklin go to the nearest hospital or clinic for drug and alcohol testing.
Baldwin County Circuit Court Judge Jody Bishop has scheduled a status conference for the case for 9 a.m. March 20 at the Baldwin County Courthouse in Bay Minette. Bishop said he will set a trial date at the March hearing. Bishop has recommended that the two sides try to settle the case through mediation.
Blogger Comments: Judge Bishop. Franklin does not settle. Franklin is ruthless in her efforts to screw the law abiding citizens. Franklin and her attorney Billable Barney Lovelace has made a living screwing people to include conspiring to hire an informant to go into a business and collecting information, paying the informant, installing keylogger software on computers, and then getting a legal warrant a week after they had the information and the keylogger data from the computers. Does this sound like an honest sheriff. We don't think so. Franklin is the most corrupt Sheriff that has ever been elected in the State of Alabama.
Randall McNeill, a Montgomery attorney who represents Franklin through the county’s liability insurance provider, said Tuesday he does not comment on pending cases.
Bethea, a member of the Greene and Phillips law firm in Mobile, said it was too early in the case for mediation.
Franklin, 52, was traveling alone northbound on Alabama 287, just south of the Interstate 65 interchange, when she failed to yield the right of way to the southbound car driven by Hubbard Hall, an Alabama state trooper’s accident report said.
Franklin was traveling an estimated 15 mph in the county-owned 2011 Ford Expedition at 6:25 a.m. when her vehicle struck the 2016 Toyota Corolla driven by Hubbard Hall, the wreck report said. Hall was driving an estimated 45 mph in a 45 mph speed zone, the report said.
The right front of Franklin’s vehicle struck the front of the Corolla at an angle, the report showed. Franklin’s vehicle was pushed back from the collision, and Hall’s car traveled a short distance before coming to “an uncontrolled” stop in the road, the trooper’s report said.
Blogger Comments: Franklin's vehicle sustained damage, not Franklin. The Halls suffered serious injuries because of Franklin's negligence.
An insurance claim filed in the Morgan County Commission office with Meadowbrook Insurance Group, the county’s liability insurance provider, includes a written report from Morgan County Chief Deputy Mike Corley.
“Sheriff Franklin was attempting a left turn into a gas station and did not see the second vehicle coming over the crest of the hill,” Corley said in the report.
Blogger Comments: The picture below was taken in the location of the accident. The Halls has driven this road for over 40 years. It was very easy for us to see oncoming traffic at the location of the wreck. June 7, 2016 was a Sunny day with a high predicted at 87 degrees. At the time of the accident it was completely day light.
The service station in the distance is the one Franklin was attempting to reach. As you can see from the station you can easily see well into the distance of the incline. June 7, 2016 was on a Tuesday Franklin was scheduled to have one of her late staff calls as she does every Tuesday. We believe Franklin was rushing back to attend her meeting and preoccupied.
The Halls and Franklin were all wearing seat belts. The air bag in the Halls’ vehicle deployed, the report said.
The Halls were taken to a hospital by ambulance. Franklin was not injured, the report said.
The lawsuit said the Halls suffered injuries and mental anguish at the time of the wreck, and that they will continue to suffer in the future. They have incurred present and future medical and hospital bills, lost wages and the loss of their automobile, the lawsuit said.
The trooper indicated on the wreck report that both drivers appeared to be normal, and that neither an alcohol nor drug test was administered to either driver.
Blogger Comments: This is where we believe that Franklin messed up and did not immediately report the accident to the County Commissioner and did not go immediately for a drug and alcohol test.
The county insurance claim file shows that Franklin took an alcohol and drug test at Occupational Health Group in Decatur at 1:35 p.m., some seven hours after the wreck. The test results were not in the claim file.
The sheriff’s Ford Explorer valued at $16,450 sustained $7,553.06 in damage, according to the insurance claim. Meadowbrook paid $6,553.06 on the claim and the county paid a $1,000 deductible to Cockrell’s Body Shop in Bay Minette for repairing the vehicle.
Damage to the sheriff’s sport utility vehicle included the front bumper, grill, front lights, radiator support, hood, fender, front suspension, right front tire, electrical compressor and right front door, the claim showed.
The Halls’ lawsuit says Franklin “was not acting within the line and scope” of her job as sheriff when the wreck happened.
Blogger Comments: It should be easily proven that Franklin was not acting within the line and scope of her job as sheriff. She was not attending a conference or training during the week of the 7th of June. No law enforcement activities was scheduled or in process during this time frame.
Cindy Dunn, a senior claims representative for Meadowbrook, said in an email three weeks after the wreck that she was waiting to talk to Franklin.
Blogger Comments: It is evident at this point and time that Franklin and her attorney Billable Barney is a liability to the Morgan County Sheriffs Office, the County Commission, and Meadowbrook Insurance.
“We believe she may be entitled to immunity in this matter,” Dunn said in an email to Morgan County Administrator Belinda Ealey.
Blogger Comments: Franklin may have immunity with the state but she clearly does not have immunity in Federal Court for her actions. How can a sheriff cause an accident and severely injury a family because of her negligence and get away with it? The reason Franklin believes she can get away with it is because she is well versed in spinning her lies.
Bethea said he expects Franklin’s attorneys to raise immunity as a defense. He said he will have to prove that Franklin was not on the job when the wreck happened to strike down an immunity claim.
Blogger Comments: It should be easy to prove that Franklin was not on duty during her her rendezvous with Charlie Mcnichol. No training, no conferences, no motel room, no conference verification of payment. Just Franklin and good ole Charlie. If the Hall's attorney does a little research he will find out this is true. Franklin did attend a June 11 conference in the area along with a host of friends, employees, and her daughters and their families.
“The burden of proof is on us,” Bethea said.
Franklin is also a defendant in an unrelated federal civil lawsuit filed recently by Glenda Lockhart, a Falkville business owner who manages the Morgan County Whistleblower internet blog.
Blogger Comments: We encourage the Halls attorney to check out the PACER website to review the large volume of lawsuits that Franklin has fought during her terms in office.