Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Jury and Witness Intimidation in the LMJC

[Update, September 7, 4 p.m.]: Tonya is doing a great job! One wonders if she has been doing all of this all her working life![End Update]

[Note]: Tonya Craft makes her radio debut on WGOW (102.3 FM) today at 3 p.m. on "The Truth of the Matter." If you can listen, please do. My sense is that whatever doubts people might have had about her guilt will be erased by how she handles herself and her audience.

True, there are some prosecutors and judges in the LMJC, along with witnesses who perjured themselves during Tonya's trial that are not going to like the show or how they are portrayed, but perhaps they should have thought about it before decided to press on with obvious lies. If there is one thing I can say about Tonya, it is that she is about the truth. [End Note]

Sometime in the next year, Eric Echols is supposed to be put on trial for alleged "witness intimidation" while he was questioning prosecution witnesses in the Tonya Craft case. Since we have the transcript and the audiotape of Mr. Echols' interview with Jerry McDonald, in which Mr. Echols was supposed to have threatened him, and since there are no threats in the document or the tape, there is no intimidation, and the arrest and charges are prima facae illegal. (Not that anyone employed by the LMJC feels bound by the law. Law is just for mundanes.)

To make matters more interesting, McDonald even said under oath during the Tonya Craft trial that he never had spoken with Mr. Echols, yet another example of an LMJC prosecution witness committing perjury. (That is why I call the LMJC, Perjury Central.)

Interestingly, we do have videotape of an attempt by a witness to intimidate and assault another witness, and that incident is on videotape. Sandra Lamb not only physically assaulted Mr. Echols but also used a racial slur in the process. Granted, we are talking about the State of Georgia, which never could get its "justice" apparatus to look into the dozens of brutal murders in which whites killed blacks and it was all perfectly legal, since judges and prosecutors in the Peach State don't believe they are bound by law, even God's Law.

(In fact, Georgia sheriffs and local "law enforcement" personnel either took part in or helped to cover up a number of these racial murders. Perhaps it is not surprising, then, that the LMJC judges, police, and prosecutors continue the proud tradition of lawlessness by officials in that state. Don't forget that Sand Mountain, which is in the LMJC, for years had a sign declaring, "N****r, don't let the sun set on you," so we should not be surprised that prosecutor "The Man" tried to appeal to racial prejudice during Tonya's trial.)

However, since witness intimidation supposedly is a crime in the LMJC (although in Eric's case, there was no intimidation, hence, no crime), I would think that Tim "Dirty" Deal, Chris "Alberto-Facebook" Arnt, and Len "The Man" Gregor would want to protect witnesses, given that they have a sworn duty to do so. Think again.

As I was going over some trial details, I came upon this gem from the Chattanoogan's very able Dennis Norwood in his account of Kim Walker's April 26 testimony:
Ms. Walker testified that she received a phone message on her cell phone while she was at the ball field from the same person saying, “You can call back or not call back. If you don’t call back, I have information on you and I will go forward with it.” “How did that make you feel,” asked Mr. Covert. “I felt threatened,” she answered. (Sandra Lamb was the person who made the threat.)
It also was clear from Ms. Walker's testimony that the prosecution and police were engaged in acts of intimidation to try to force her to get her own daughter to claim Tonya sexually molested her. The child was adamant that it did not happen, and so was Ms. Walker, but, as we have found out time and again, the people who run the LMJC are not interested in the truth when they believe lies will serve them much better.

Will anything be done about this? Probably not. We have to understand that the people who run the LMJC and who call the shots in Northwest Georgia are drunk with power and sincerely believe they are above the law. This is a sad fact of life in that part of the country, but it is a fact.


eagle1 said...

Sandra has earned her place in the spotlight, moreso than her daughter. Yet it's for all the wrong reasons. I feel sorry for her having to explain all this to the daughter as she gets older and realizes what "mommy" did to her.
I sure hope they have Tonya's radio show live on the web, which I think they do. It will be interesting to see who calls in.

KC Sprayberry said...

As more and more time passes since the verdict, it seems as if more people support Tonya, if that's possible. She fought back against what so many of us didn't, and won. She's given everyone in LMJC reason to hope they can beat these horrendous charges, instead of praying the accuser(s) change their mind before an indictment or trial. Tonya can count herself as an angel for those in these situations and I only hope she finds complete happiness soon, with her children home where they belong.

As for LMJC, don't think they're the only ones doing as they please despite the law around here. There is so much corruption it's mind boggling. But thanks to people like Bill, we're finally opening our eyes and demanding change - either from those elected to administer everything from country coroner to the county commissioner or they might just find out the hard way they were never elected for life.

Doc Ellis said...


Thank you, Bill

kbp said...

WGOW Talkradio has Listen Live you can link to for Tonya’s program.

That program, The Truth of the Matter, has the web page at WGOW’s site, which is to include a link for a podcast to listen to later if you miss Tonya live. There is also a link to her blog at WGOW, but nothing there to read at this time.

Anonymous said...

I am so excited to hear Tonya on the radio. I know it's not her "thing" or what she set out to do 20 years ago, but as the weeks go on, I believe she will become comfortable & relaxed. We can all probably guess the first few shows will be a lot of congratulations & "way to go's", but hopefully she will be able to get her story out.

Oh, and for those of you in the LMJC & your "believers/followers", good luck at trying to break her down. She's already proven her strength against you & I say, bring it on!!!

Bill, excellent work again. Keep shedding the light & even though a couple of people want you to "shut up", PLEASE don't!!!

Anonymous said...

Well, so far Tonya has pretty much dealt a devastating blow to the myth that LMJC tried to propagate that the media somehow influenced the jury verdict. Amazing, but not surprising, that yet again, nothing that comes from the LMJC about this case has credibility or is supported by facts.

Anonymous said...

Another Great blog, Mr Anderson. Keep them coming.I lisen to Toyna's Radio Show, She did a great job. she is going to be a very good host. Way to go Toyna.

Kaye said...

Since I had already followed the Tonya Craft trial closely, most of the radio program was a review of information for me already. I thought she did a good job, and I suspect her show will become even more polished in time.

Thumbs up: for the discussion about whether the jurors' decision were affected by the media.

Thumbs down: for the awkward position that the media panel was put in when asked about the media bias of an unnamed competitor. Brilliant answer by Starnes who gracefully chartered these waters.

Looking forward to the upcoming discussion surrounding the Grand Jury and indictments.

Anonymous said...

The "unnamed competitor (Newschannel Slime) just happens to be Talk Radio's television partner. I know that Kevin must have felt uncomfortable during the discussion.

I don't think Tonya's show is going to be much of a hit with Slime. Their coverage of her case dealt them a huge blow and they lost hundreds if not thousands of viewers because of it.

I personally communicated with the news director and he thought that they were fair and balanced. He's an idiot and wouldn't know fair and balanced if it kicked him in the ass.

Kaye said...

Here's the thing about bias--opinions will vary depending on which side you are on.

Yeah, poor Kevin. He might get a cold shoulder from some of his colleagues from Channel 9. As bad as Channel 9 is, I remember Melydia Clewell, who I really admire and trust, worked there many years before landing at WRCB.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, but they laid Melydia off for a "younger" audience. She was shafted & I know this personally. She is still friends with a lot of her former co-workers, but WRCB gave her a chance & it was under a huge microscope.

As far as biased, it was just really odd that channel 9 whas the only one reporting something different. Some days, there were 9 or 10 reporters in the pool room & only one came out with a different version of events? They were very slanted & always have been. They also like to take any call they get and run with it, then when there really isn't anything there, it just magically disappears.

Anonymous said...

Sandra Lamb is nothing but a dressed up whore. Glad Greg finally figured out she was banging everything with an appendage.

Kaye said...

anon 7:57:

Make no mistake about it, I disagree with the way Newschannel 9covered the whole Tonya Craft story from the very beginning to the very end. My point was simply to say that bias will be perceived differently depending on which side of the fence you are on. I would venture to guess that somebody like the plaintiffs in this case, or HAG + F loved Channel 9's coverage! Most everyone else did not.

As far as neutrality, the only time I can envision zero bias is when somebody is completely indifferent on a subject. That might be easier said than done. Certainly in this case, I have a hard time envisioning ANY living, breathing reporter having the ability to witness the things that happened in that courtroom and still maintain a neutral stance. Losing one's neutrality does not necessarily mean that the reporting becomes inaccurate or unfair. As a matter of fact, quite the contrary.

Because Channel 9 had already presumed guilt and practically shouted it from the rooftops, they completely missed the bigger story! Dennis Norwood didn't miss it, neither did Melydia, Callie, or Kevin West. After 22 days of testimony, the story was no longer simply about one woman's guilt or innocence. The ultimate story was how skewed and mangled our judicial system had become, especially in the LMJC. It also exposed the fact that CAC had on its payroll unqualified, and careless people in charge of forensic interviews and examinations who perceived themselves to be part of the prosecution team. While Channel 9 was busy regurgitating the prosecution's viewpoint, there were other media outlets doing the right thing and actually informing the citizens of the truth. THAT is reporting! And because the REAL story didn't begin or end with Tonya Craft, it is still being told.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you 1000% Kaye. Channel 9 has had a lot of problems over the last 20 years with their reporting. You can guarantee that they will be all over a story that isn't there, but when there is a story, they disappear. They have serious issues. I've said it a million times on this blog, but I stopped watching them years & years ago. When we had an incident at our jobsite (which was completely un-newsworthy), they were first on the "scene" to start their antics. The panic & racial tensions THEY created cost people money & some their jobs. It caused me to have to be on medication. I'm actually glad I only have 2 or 3 shows I even watch on ABC, so it saves me the pain of even having to see their "news breaks". LOL.

I did love the way Tonya's trial ended up exposing the LMJC for what it is. Also, very proud of the reporters who stood their ground & didn't back down. One of them lives in CC & it could have been very ugly for her. It's still amazing to see Dennis' & Kevin's tweets & opinions on the fiasco. Another thing, I, of course, watched the verdict on channel 3. You could hear & see the relief of David Carroll & Cindy Sexton. It was an awesome thing to witness.

Btw, I'm the earlier poster.