I received a message this morning that a Georgia judge has quashed the criminal indictment against Eric Echols, which ends yet another sorry chapter in the discredited criminal case against Tonya Craft. While LMJC prosecutors have four years in which to re-indict Mr. Echols, they have a real problem and they know it: there is and was no basis for indictment, period.
Just because LMJC D.A. Buzz Franklin's pathetic minions have taken another shot does not mean I am dropping my scrutiny of his office and others in Northwest Georgia for this travesty. While Franklin and his "boss," ADA Chris Arnt (who really calls the shots in that office, and Franklin just does his bidding) most likely will respond with their usual "no comment" when handed their heads, in reality this is a huge blow to Arnt's political aspirations.
(I will deal with Arnt's ambitions in future posts, but suffice it to say that this guy had high hopes until he bent over to kiss the posteriors of Sandra Lamb, her father, Dewayne Wilson, and their friends. Sorry, fellow, bad choice. Call it a "bad touch.")
Let me now look at the case against Mr. Echols, or, more specifically, the non-case against him. His problems supposedly began with the "Mommie Dearest" incident when he served (legally) Sandra Lamb with some papers. In truth, Mr. Echols, a first-rate private investigator and an African-American, was quietly ripping up the guts of Arnt's case against Tonya Craft, and Arnt knew it.
If you have not seen the video of Sandra Lamb's 2009 racially-motivated assault on Mr. Echols, it is worth watching and can be seen here. In the video, Lamb then assaults Mr. Echols and calls him a "black bastard."
Legally, this is assault, and when accompanied by racial epithets is a hate crime under Georgia and federal law. However, given that Buzz Franklin and the LMJC are corrupt, prosecutors charged Mr. Echols with a crime. To compound matters, Sandra Lamb filed an assault charge against Mr. Echols, clearly lying on the police report, and then claiming that Arnt directed her actions.
Despite the fact that the sheet on which she made her accusation said that filing a false charge is a felony under Georgia law, Lamb filed charges against Mr. Echols that were contradicted by the video evidence. The way that Arnt and his friends reacted was to ignore the crimes that Lamb committed and charge Mr. Echols with felony witness tampering.
However, the "felony" apparently was recorded and when the recording and transcript of Mr. Echols' conversations with Jerry McDonald were made public, they also contradicted the substance of the charges. Furthermore, had this conversation been made available at the trial, it would have cast serious doubt on McDonald's crocodile tearful testimony that was replayed ad nauseum on television. So, what to do in the LMJC? Continue to run off the cliff, of course!
Once again, Chris Arnt's grand strategy crashed and burned just like everything else in the Tonya Craft case. Moreover, there is more work to do, as others in the LMJC are falsely charged, and compounding the problem is that there is not an honest person in a position of authority in the LMJC. Since we cannot appeal to the better side of people who don't have a better side, then the only other option is to expose the lies and the liars.
Congratulations to Mr. Echols, I guess. He finally can relax, but he also knows that the system of "justice" in Northwest Georgia is not in good hands. Not a good thing.