Nancy Grant Trial update As of 8-25-2007

 TRIAL INFORMATION RELEASE:

Trial Date:

Time: 9:00 AM

Place:  DesotoCounty Courthouse

Address: 115 Oak St.

City: Arcadia, Fl 34266

Phone: 863-993-4876

Second Floor

 

Guilty on all 19 Counts

Jury deliberated for approximately three and a half hours for 19 counts.  Verdict was pronounced by the solemn face Judge Lee Haworth, who didn't look up, at approximately 9:00 pm August 24, 2007 in a courtroom filled with armed officers and four state attorneys. Outside the small Arcadia County courthouse were many sheriffs' cruisers. Judge Haworth had no eye contact with the court  audience while he read the verdict.   He warned everyone "I don't want any trouble"…which seemed a bit odd because at that hour most of Nancy's thirty or so supporters had left, leaving only about four people with Nancy's side.  Does this seem a bit paranoid?   Nancy said earlier, “I wonder what they're afraid of… the Florida Pro Se Bar only had four members, the Florida Bar has 71,000."

Judge withheld sentencing until Sept 25 according to Nancy, saying this was a non violent crime so you're free to go on your $50,000 bail until Sept 25.  Nancy was in high spirits, expressing her ongoing faith in God saying “God has me right in line where He wants me. I have a great peace. I was ready to go to jail, but He had other plans." Her main concern is for those low-income people in straits needing help to somehow save their homes. 

Nancy said, "The jury's faces looked like prisoners of war, like they were doing something they didn't want to do or were forced." Prosecutor Hartery appeared so stressed he looked like a walking stroke patient; other younger state attorneys in the rear of the court looked sweaty and nervous…why? Read on. Nancy said, “For Hartery this was not a sweet win. Hartery stood there like a statue after reading the verdict, no response.“  The other state attorneys were nervous and now sweating more than even earlier. 

After Judge Haworth read the plea, Attorney Mooney (Nancy's defense attorney) immediately said, "Let's go."  They walked through a courtroom full of armed officers fully prepared to cuff Nancy and take her to jail, leaving the Judge, Senior Prosecutor Hartery, and a junior state attorney standing there "like a statue dumbfounded with nothing to say."

 Jurisdiction

State of Florida is to define UPL (unlicensed practice of law) with the jury instructions, but what does the Florida Constitution say? 

Jury instructions specifically exclude the receiving of compensation; yet, see the Florida Constitution at Http://www.flsenate.gov:

See href="name=A05S15>SECTION 15.  Attorneys; admission and discipline.--The supreme court shall have exclusive jurisdiction to regulate the admission of persons to the practice of law and the discipline of persons admitted. History.--S.J.R. 52-D, 1971; adopted 1972.

Yet; this case is prosecuted through the state attorney, not the Florida Bar.  If exclusive jurisdiction is held by the Florida Bar is this judgment valid?  

          Court Redefines the Jury Instructions - again.

Upon Mr. Hartery's Motion, the judge amended the jury instructions where the individual description of each method of practicing law is OR rather than AND in the course of conduct defining UPL. See Jury Instructions CCF11302006_00000.pdf Hartery's Proposed Jury instructions.  This increased the scope of the already broad definition to include possibly 70% of the people in society - big enough to drive a truck through.   Even our founding fathers who signed the Declaration of Independence would be prosecuted for UPL if they lived nowadays.  The statute 454.23 defining UPL which was repealed in 1968 was withheld from the jury's knowledge by the jury instructions proposed by Prosecutor Hartery and endorsed by Judge Haworth. As earlier stated, First Amendment arguments were forbidden by Judge Haworth.  Aren't judges sworn to uphold the Constitution?  What's it called when judges don't uphold the Constitution? Is there a penalty? If so, what?  Does anyone enforce it? If so, who? 

The State is supposedly to have the “burden of proof"; yet, the judge instructed the jury, “the state is not required to show there is a victim or compensation has been received. See the following link from the Florida Bar website especially regarding compensation which Florida v Sperry seems to say compensation is required:  http://www3.flabar.org/DIVCOM/PI/BIPS2001.nsf/1119bd38ae090a748525676f0053b606/dc4a88c3a91eea378525669e004e16f9?OpenDocument

 Witnesses Not Allowed to Testify

Although no limit was put on state's witnesses to testify, three defense witnesses were not allowed.  The three witnesses were proffered before allowing them to testify before the jury, afterwards the judge denied. Nancy objected to the proffering of the witnesses claiming “this is not a bench trial." As was consistent throughout this trial, the judge denied most arguments presented by the defense.

 Case Law

Nancy rebutted the Florida Supreme CT v Neiman case submitted by the prosecution saying the case is off point since the defendant received millions of dollars in law-related activity.  Many other Florida Bar UPL cases are civil, which do not apply since this case is criminal.  The court ignored these arguments. Although criminal courts are required to meet a stricter standard of proof, much civil case law was heard which requires a lower standard. 

 Nancy Takes the Stand

Nancy, called by Mr. Mooney, began by explaining the origins of her activism when her child was
incarcerated in 2000, finding that his attorney was not building a defense - none. She also found mostif not all, other inmates were in the same situation; then, because of their lack of knowledge,  were receiving devastating sentences with no money to hire attorneys, no access to the courts, and no relief.  Many inmates do not have money for postage, let alone an attorney. "100% of the cases I've collected since 2000 had no defense; everyone is railroaded and has no access to the courts.”  The inmates were arrested, put in the county jail, given a Public Defender who waives their right to a speedy trial without their consent.  In Johnny Smith's case (see later description on this site do ctrl-f) who received 100yrs - officers told him they were gathering fingerprints and DNA from his file (not from the crime scene) to present as evidence  Many inmates have sat in county jail for 2 years and some up to 7 years. Illegal aliens are being sent to state prisons. Nancy explains her activism as follows:

 Florida JAIL4Judges Jailer-In-Chief 

While Nancy testified of her involvement with JAIL4Judges (see href="../../index.html">http://www.JAIL4Judges.org), that she is the statewide coordinator, Judge Haworth turned his chair toward her, sat on the edge of his seat while listening to her describe the accountability process implemented in some states. The state's argument is that licensed lawyers are required to litigate; yet, some licensed lawyers were disciplined or disbarred after they got involved in this matter.  

Attorney abuse characterizes most inmates.  Johnny Smith's mother paid thousands of dollars of borrowed money only to have the attorney do nothing.  She said “this system is broken.”  The courtroom was filled with supporters from We the People  in Tampa who agree.  When asked if she had a vendetta about Judge Parker (who took her kids) she said no she “has a vendetta against injustice.” She would not do anything harmful or criminal, would not clog or disrupt the courts; as many have testified she has helped unclog the courts.  Just as Corry Williams sat in county jail 7 years no trial.  "I have a way of bringing light to a dark situation.”

 Florida Pro Se Bar Director  

Prosecutor Hartery cross-examined Nancy, intending to portray a grand scheme for the Florida Pro Se Bar to practice law. Nancy, soft spoken, explained to Hartery, who was shouting at her by that time, “I saw a need. I have thousands of letters from inmates. Others are helping too. I am not the only one. I never claimed to be an attorney.” Hartery said loudly, “You've never been to law school have you?"  Nancy: “No, I wouldn't.” Hartery asked questions to point out she was not licensed to practice law, Nancy said, “you don't have a license to practice law, you can't produce a license." 
The (de facto) Florida Bar has a page on Florida Division of Corporations website but with no annual reporting information. Mr. Mooney has filed a lawsuit Florida Bar Association with the Division of Corporations. I am being prosecuted because of a conspiracy. You'll have to answer to that in Federal Court in a week. I am exposing one-sided trials such as this one going on now and people who don't have access to the court.  I don't practice law, I help people. Nothing compares to what you've already done by taking my children away.”

She also said, “This law I am being prosecuted under 454.23 was repealed in 1968 and should have been taken out of the statutes, but 454.23 is being used by the Florida Bar to attack any person who challenges their monopoly.” Hartery asked, “You've been grieving attorneys - grieving me to the Bar haven't you?"  Nancy: " Yes, it's my duty to grieve just as you pointed out earlier. You lied and threatened Adeline Hudson when you went over to her house. That letter was not a subpoena.”  Hartery began to continue loudly, approaching her, accusing her of suing when she doesn't like what's done, such as with her son.  Nancy rebutted regarding her son, “He was manipulated and his incarceration was illegal. It's been almost a year since he went to prison and the Second District Court of Appeals granted him a belated because he has two recused judges sign the orders sending him to prison, one covering for the other. 

Nancy also rebutted other loud, intense questioning regarding grievances against other lawyers, “When attorneys are paid for services and there are no services, they have 50 clients, no services and they're all being paid - that's racketeering.  The United State's number-one industry is prisons. I have never found anyone found not guilty because of one-sided trials. Micheal Riley had no defense. In a general sense, I see everyone getting railroaded. If an attorney doesn't file paperwork, the client sits in jail.  Attorneys are waiving speedy trial without client knowledge or permission.

Jail Conditions: Slaveship conditions  

Nancy states she has received reports from numerous inmates that "inmates are lined up on the floor shoulder to shoulder, head to head like history's dark black slave ship conditions. Feces and urine were in showers because the pods where the inmates are housed are so crowded they were forced to use the showers for toilets; there's also maggots, staph infections and over half the men had boils.

Pro Se Filers are blocked - no access to the court per Florida Constitution.

Nancy also went on to testify, “Adeline Hudson had 5 lawyers for her son Johnny Smith. They did nothing. They got DNA and fingerprints after arrest.  Johnny Smith sat there 3 years waiting for trial.”  Hartery: “Their attorneys just file a pleading and they get a hearing in 60 days."  Nancy:  "That's a LIE!  They sit there until they break. Others are threatened with 150 years."  Hartery: 
"They can file documents.” Nancy," Pro Se filers get no hearing time, their pleadings are treated with indifference. Pro Se filers are BLOCKED!  I didn't tell everybody to take a plea. Inmates are 100% warehoused. The plea-deal system isn't working, all Pro Se Motions are treated with indifference.” Nancy also went on to explain that if inmates were happy with their attorneys they wouldn't have filed Emergency Motions to Dismiss (EMD) "All EMDs were ignored when filed Pro Se.” After the EMDs were ignoredinmates filed Writs of Mandamus - to require the appellate court to order the lower court to act. "No Writs were granted" said Nancy.  

Hartery also argued that the Florida Bar has exclusive jurisdiction per the Constitution of Florida and the Florida Bar has jurisdiction. Nancy replied, “The Florida Bar is not God and doesn't control the dictates of my conscience.” Question: So is the Fla Bar prosecuting this case? Ever hear, “I was just following orders” when 6 million Jews died?  A supporter also pointed out if Nancy had represented herself as an attorney or legal expert, then the State intentionally violated attorney/client privacy laws.

 The “Hover Zone”

Nancy went on to explain a “hover zone” to depict how the legal system is operating above the constitutional provisions for the people it is supposed to protect.  The “hover zone” also depicts how the entire judicial branch of our government is operating above the law or any accountability since it is all self regulating, e.g whether it be police, sheriff, attorneys or judges, their disciplinary departments are all within their own organizations; therefore, their peers rarely “snitch." Checks and balances were originally designed to be the Free Press and authority of Congress to Impeach judges. Ever hear of a judge impeachment?  Neither have I. The Press deserves no comment. Research shows 90% of Bar complaints are dismissed. The rest are reviewed and then dismissed.   Hmm… does anyone recall similarities to the “no snitching” prison culture?  See also http://www.sbafla.info, http://www.secinfo.com; http://www.Floridaucc.com - the discussion of these is beyond the scope of this document, but the implications, once the reader understands, are enormous.  

I'm a Christian - a born-again Christian  

Nancy proclaims her faith openly and publicly; her life, her valuesand her conscience are consistent with her faith in Jesus Christ. She offers encouragement, hope and prayer for those inmates who contact her. She offers occasionally small gifts of money (but large to inmates who have zero) to indigent inmates for vital needs such as postage.

THE ARK OF THE COVENANT: She states she formed the Christian Party a few years ago as God led.  She placed the Ten Commandments in as bylaws. Since the Ten Commandments were held in the "Ark of the Covenant" in the Old Testament, the Ark of the Covenant has gone out before us, as it did when the Children of Israel went into battle. When the Ark went before them, they were never defeated. God promised victory in the following scripture:

Jeremiah 1:18, 19 For behold, I have made thee this day a defenced city and an iron pillar and brazen walls against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, against its princes thereof, against its priests thereof, and against  the people of the land. And they shall fight against thee, but they shall not prevail against thee, for I am with thee, saith the Lord, to deliver thee.

Nancy and many of her supporters find their strength, values and courage in their faith in Jesus Christ. Many believers are hearing prophetically through various sources, that changes are on their way very soon, and that what is hidden will be revealed.  These words are consistent with Scripture and with each other.    

            Cutting himself

Michael Munyon was cutting himself until he contacted Nancy who prayed with him. She encouraged him to write. He began to write a lot.  It wasn't long until he stopped cutting himself.          

More on Robert Masters: 418 days in Solitary confinement

The law says 48 hours is the maximum for solitary confinement; yet, he testified he was held 418 days. His attorney would not answer his letters or phone calls. Finally when Nancy assisted in helping him file a bar complaint, he was released.  The inmates in the institution had a party for him.  The FCCC would not allow Masters to sign a Writ of Habeus corpus. Was this really in the USA?  

            The Judge's Body Language

            The judge was noticed by numerous observers in the audience giving approval or disapproval to final arguments by Mr. Hartery and Andy Mooney by nods indicating "yes" or a wag of the head saying "no" expressing approval or disapproval.  

Defense Motion for Replacement of Juror denied - driving while blind?

Numerous observers noticed that one juror was falling asleep throughout the trial. Another one was dozing occasionally also.  When Atty Mooney requested that juror be replaced with a stand-by juror, he was denied. Isn't this a bit like driving while blind? Can we give tickets for that like DUI?  

The Grand Jury Farce

The Grand Jury process was considered by Nancy and confidants.  Upon further investigation she found the Grand Jury was administrated by the STATE ATTORNEY'S OFFICE!   

The FBI Farce

The FBI was contacted since Federal courts and Federal issues are at hand.  Information from Nancy was treated with indifference.  

The Press Farce: Watchdog or Lapdog?

The Press throughout this trial was vacant with the exception of Friday. Nancy has explained they have been sympathetic toward the government and portrayed her in the worst light possible, while letting the corruption go unreported.  The Contact information for the reporter from the Sun-Herald who was present at the hearing is as follows to voice concerns:  

John Lawhorne 
108 S. Polk Ave.
Arcadia, FL 34266
Email: dcedit@sunline.net
Tel: 863-494-0300 
Fax: 863-494-9362 
 
Nancy Grant Trial update As of 8-23-2007 -  
 TRIAL INFORMATION RELEASE:
Date: Monday August 20, 2007

Time: 9:00 AM

Place:  DesotoCounty Courthouse

Address: 115 Oak St.

City: Arcadia, Fl 34266

Phone: 863-993-4876

Second Floor

 

"I'll have no 1st Amendment Arguments in My court!”

-       Judge Lee Haworth, Sarasota Twelfth Circuit Acting Chief Judge 

Did Judge Lee Haworth suspended the 1st amendment free speech provision of the US and Florida Constitution today? Or… if he suspended the 1st amendment, did he suspend the entire Constitution?  When Andy Mooney, Ms Grant's defense counsel requested testimony from John Good, testify on 1st Amendment freedom of speech issues pertaining to Ms. Grant's defense, Judge Lee Haworth responded, "I'll have no 1st Amendment Arguments in My court!”  John Good, an attorney licensed in a state other than Florida had been prosecuted for misdemeanor Unlicensed Practice of Law (UPL) violations while working with Mr. Mooney as a paralegal. Although Mr. Good clearly advised clients that he was not licensed to practice law in Florida, but was licensed in a different state, the inclusion of his name on a small sign in their office front was enough to convict Mr. Good of UPL.  Mr. Mooney describes to the court that Ms. Grant's efforts to educate inmates of their legal rights by sending pre printed copies of US Constitution, Bill of rights and Declaration of Independence and like manner is exercise of free speech, not giving legal advise. 

 

Doesn't our government want us to learn of our rights? How are we supposed to comply with the laws when we are treated like mushrooms?  The state claims we cannot discuss law amongst ourselves. If these so called UPL laws pass constitutional muster, then does it follow that Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin, George Washington and James Madison could be arrested for UPL today?  Many claim these laws are overbroad and unenforceable.

 

Federal Court Intervenes 

 

The Federal Court DENIED Judge Parker and Prosecutor Don Hartery's Motion to Dismiss Nancy Grant's  Second Amended Complaint filed in Federal Court August 13, 2007 naming Prosecutor Don Hartery and Judge Parker as defendants.  Nancy's complaint alleges Selective Prosecution and Conspiracy to Violate Civil Rights all based on Florida Statute 454.23 a statute repealed in 1968, but later enhanced to upgrade UPL violations to a third degree felony about the same time Ms. Grant ran for Judge in the State of Florida. Ms. Grants cites a Florida Bar v Norman (download here) where the Florida Supreme court granted a Writ of Prohibition requiring the Florida Seventeenth District to cease and desist prosecution of Mr. Norman in a UPL case:  

"The Circuit Court of the Seventeenth Judicial Circuit is exceeding its jurisdiction and usurping the exclusive jurisdiction of this Court with respect to the discipline of persons admitted to the practice of law in Florida 

     yet, apparently the Florida Supreme Court has not applied the same standard in Ms. Grant's case by allowing this case to continue. Another inconsistency here is that Mr. Good above was prosecuted as a misdemeanor, not a felony like they are prosecuting Ms. Grant for multiple counts. This Federal action   may bring this trial to a halt. Can you spell SELECTIVE PROSECUTION?

 More on Nancy's Arrests

Nancy was arrested three times for the same violations.  See http://www.littlet38.com/Images/index.html?p=135 for details.  

Johnny Smith

 

Johnny's mother explained today before trial how a correctional officer seized Johnny's food tray, slammed it against a trash can threatening, “you either remove Nancy Grant from your visitation list or you'll never eat again.”  Subsequently, Johnny removed Ms. Grant from his visitation list as well as any help Nancy could have been. Johnny, a young, low income African American was convicted in yet more charges of a dubious nature while represented by an “ineffective” public defender, possibly another wrongful or exaggerated conviction and given a life sentence after waiting two and a half years for a trial. The incident apparently happened several years ago. Hey, doesn't the county receive Federal money for every prisoner they warehouse?  Who says crime doesn't pay?  Does anyone regret our boys are dying in Iraq and Afghanistan for this?

 

Four Hundred Eighteen Days in Solitary Confinement 

 

Robert Masters testified today he was held four hundred eighteen days (418) in solitary confinement in the Florida Civil Commitment Center while waiting four hundred eighty days (480) for trial for assaulting an officer while incarcerated as Mack Ritchie, for no crime committed in the Florida Civil Commitment Center, again represented by a public defender.   He was given more charges for allegedly assaulting an officer. Robert testified that his PD refused to accept phone calls or answer letters, causing indefinite delays. Robert had been nearly blind until only recently when he received an operation on his eyes for glaucoma and cataracts.  Question:  how can a blind man assault an officer? Sniff. Does anyone smell something? When Ms. Grant got involved, Robert filed a Florida Bar complaint, which got his lawyer to at least respond.  Is this cruel and unusual?

 

Florida Bar Complaints 

 

Numerous inmates filed complaints with the Florida Bar. Bar complaints are difficult if not impossible to acquire from the Bar, many times buried beneath numerous departments do not appear as though they were ever even filed. Once they are closed they are extremely difficult to access. Estimates state that more than 90% of all Bar complaints are dismissed. Only a small remaining portion of the remnant are investigated. Isn't this internal regulation like the fox watching the henhouse?  This same concept of internal regulation appears rampant throughout the entire judicial branch of our government.Where's the real accountability?  Even so-called Grand Juries are held accountable to judges; therefore, if the Grand Jury investigation involves a judge, where's the accountability?

 

Florida Pro Se Bar Officers Testify 

 

The recorded prison conversations direct those in need of services to State Certified Law Clerk Paralegals Mack Ritchie.  Mack completed his legal education by way of correspondence from Blackstone University and is currently a State Certified Law Clerk, which by law allows Mack to engage in certain legal services. Mack explained that his work includes generation of many forms available on computers in the computer lab for the resident population; compensation for his work is not allowed nor accepted. Both Aaron Shaw and Mack detailed the working relationship between Nancy and them where she acted as a go-between to acquire documentation and mailings as though she were a mail clerk.

 

Mack also detailed other inmates' legal issues where intimidation and threats may have taken place.   The reader should note the tightrope these inmates who testify in this case walk between DOC staff and inmate. Numerous Writs of Mandamus were filed in an attempt to request the appellate court to require action on the part of the lower court since delays beyond constitutional limits are or were common.  Since delays went beyond constitutional limits, many inmates filed Motions to Dismiss - Pro Se. Most of these Motions were ignored by the court and never responded to with the exception of a few. The stated intent of the Florida Pro Se Bar is to educate and inform. 

 

Mack clarified that he is not an inmate; he is a resident civilly detained not for committing a crime. Mr. Hartery was noticeably agitated with testimony from Mack and Aaron, attempting to prejudice the jury with disparaging, irrelevant verbal low blows on numerous occasions as well as with other inmates or witness testimony. Objections by Mr. Mooney were sustained; however, his Motions for Mistrial were denied.

 

Aaron Shaw also testified 20 years paralegal experience, both showing substantial expertise, well spoken and intelligent, testified that the “rumor is that many are detained beyond constitutional constraints."  Aaron Shaw testified that several exhibits were falsified documents when Prosecutor Hartery attempted to submit them for evidence. Aaron Shaw explained signatures were not his, nor were envelope printing or envelope sizes that which he uses.Aaron stated his regret this prosecution was taking place; that Nancy was just trying to help. Aaron Shaw testified that people are losing house and all manor of devastation, implying as a result of the legal system and need help. He also testified of the caring nature of Nancy; that she offers prayer and encouragement.

 

John Curry's testimony held numerous contradictions to records held by FCCC mail staff concerning numerous issues.  Mack testified Mr. Curry is currently under investigation for UPL. He stated it was not necessary for Ms. Grant to solicit inmates since she was well known in the institutions. Mr. Curry was confusing and contradictory.  Numerous objections were sustained to his testimony. John was particularly interested in a raid where about one hundred offices raided the Florida Civil Commitment Center in 2005.  Much property was confiscated.

 

Similar Issues in Family and Civil Courts 

 

Ms Grant regularly gets calls from distressed citizens especially family law but also civil matters where they claim Pro Se litigants are regularly discriminated against by not granting access to courts when the courts refuse to set hearings for Pro Se litigants. Others provide substantial arguments for wrongful convictions due to forced pleas, outrageous child support judgments, orders not enforced,  state and federal laws not enforced.  One attorney expressed frustration that Perjury is not 

enforced. Ms. Grant has historically noted that fathers and fathers' rights are routinely trashed, i.e. they are of no importance in this allegedly money-making machine.

 

One single dad testified, “I've lost two houses, cost me $150,000 in legal fees, been drug through bankruptcy court all because I want to be an involved dad and take my son fishing.  I can't get hearing time as a Pro Se litigant. I file documents properly and they are ignored.”  The court finally entered a judgment against him as a “Vexatious litigant” preventing him from filing any documents Pro Se. "Nancy helped by providing me a modest retainer to retain counsel.” While the state claims Nancy's intent was to clog the court system, overwhelming evidence to the contrary seems to be apparent. Numerous other family law litigants tell of nearly identical treatment by the court. The “Pro Se coordinator” is not available to the public; yet, does not respond to requests for hearings.

 

Several citizens attending the trial vented extreme frustration at the injustices received by these courts, one person close to the point of violence. This brings to mind an excellent documentary by http://www.wallbuilders.com on the origin and content of the Declaration of Independence. They explain many of those issues are present today.

 

Numerous Counts Dropped.  

 

The number of counts against Nancy was reduced today to approximately 15 from 28 due to various errors on the part of Prosecutor Hartery and alert legal work on the part of Nancy's attorney Andy Mooney.

 

Hipaa and Privacy Violations possible 

 

Numerous records were entered into evidence including many residents' information from the Florida Civil Commitment Center. Although Mr. Mooney objected, Judge Haworth allowed those documents. Mail clerks also testified legal mail is routinely opened.

 

Big Trial and Big Buck$ 

 

Six officers were present in the court today for the entire day. The State had no less than 3 attorneys present at all times as well as several assistants. Several more officers were always present outside the courtroom. Another friend ofNancy's explained the enormous fees for probation De Soto county takes in by extremely long probation times for relatively minor traffic offenses. Mr. Mooney BTW is still a slave of the State of Florida, given that he is apparent.

 

Several Jurors Dozing again Today.  

 

Several jurors were noticeably heavy eyed and drowsy again today.  

 

 

Nancy Grant Trial update As of 8-21-2007

TRIAL INFORMATION RELEASE:

Date: Monday August 20, 2007

Time: 9:00 AM

Place:  DesotoCounty Courthouse

Address: 115 Oak St.

City: Arcadia, Fl 34266

Phone: 863-993-4876

Second Floor

 

Inmate Testimonies Raise More Questions than Answers

 

Overcrowded Jails and Prisons and “Ineffective Public Defenders”.

 

Driving through downtown Arcadia on the way to Nancy's trial today Tuesday - the second day of the trial could cause one to ask, “Just what's so important about taking down this 'enemy of the peopleas the State Attorney labeled her today, when you see the anemic economy (understatement) of the small town of Arcadia?" Arcadia appears to be in a full-tilt panic mode to imprison Nancy sparing no expense; 3 to 5 full-time officers for the week of trial, hundreds of hours - maybe thousands, of investigative hours, trial preparation, reviewing prison telephone recordings with transcriptions, charts, subpoenas to 18 or so inmates, inmate transportation to testify, judge's time, jury selection… what makes Nancy such a dangerous enemy of the state?  Arcadia has spared no expense to take down Nancy who has said she “just wants to raise ponies." Could these hundreds of thousands of dollars be used more wisely?

 

Past interviews with Nancy describe jails where many inmates have boils, different manners of infections and cockroaches.  Other informal interviews with volunteers of Prison Ministries describe the food as “unrecognizable gruel, barely fit for animals, horrible."  The list of questions grows.  Where does the crops, livestock, and income from inmate work programs go? It seems to vanish into thin air, leaving the inmates to eat food barely fit for livestock - according to former Prison Ministry volunteers.  Inmates' beds are wall to wall with no where to walk sometimes in the cell block.   

 

Over the last two days Lieutenants, state attorneys (“experts” in unlicensed practice of law), approximately 16 inmates, have left several jurors dozing off during trial or rolling their eyes back in their heads. Inmates tell of overcrowding, many public defenders who are “ineffective” or “do a half assed job."  One inmate stated, after waiting two years for a trial, the main witness changed her story resulting in a mistaken identity, so he is doing a 20-year prison sentence. While the state attorney did everything he could do to extract damning testimony from the inmates, one could ask, “why would an inmate testify against Nancy who in many cases was their only help?”

 

 

Racial  Imbalance?

 

Of the sixteen inmates questioned in the last two days: thirteen blacks, two hispanics, one white.  An all white jury, one male, six females.

 

Toes Hanging Off the End…

 

The truth of the situation seems to be like the man too big for his bed, regardless of the judge's gag order (see link in this document for Jury instructions), the inmates repeatedly testify many have waited 6 months to 2 years or more for any action whatsoever, resulting in a desperate plea deal just to get out of the county jail.  Several suicides have occurred in some counties where inmates have waited more than several years for trials in county jails.  Ms. Grant has stated in the past many plea deals come when inmates are nearly suicidal, desperate to say anything to get out of the county jail. Why? Does the county have an incentive for warehousing prisoners?  Do they receive Federal monies for warehousing prisoners?  Maybe crime does pay, but pay who?

 

So what do these dastardly prison recordings reveal? These calls between inmates and Ms. Grant shows the smoking gun of Ms Grant contributed her own money to indigent inmate accounts (to the sum of $3.00 - three dollars) for postage because they could not mail a legal document to the courts, who in many cases ignored their pleadings anyway, when their Public Defender was nearly impossible to reach. One inmate stated he had talked with his attorney only 5 times in two years, now is doing a 20-year sentence, he claims due to the “half-ass” legal representation in a probable wrongful conviction. O you say! I've heard that! All inmates claim their innocence! Well, have you visited http://www.innocenceproject.org?  That site is only DNA/Death penalty related cases. Have you considered the millions of other cases?  Now ask yourself, have you ever got a speeding ticket?  How was it handled? Would you want that system making life decisions for your freedom, family, children, career, housing? Many inmates in a desperate attempt to get action on their case filed Petitions for Writ of Mandamus with the appellate court only to have them ignored or denied. Most of the recordings were also unintelligible - very distorted.

 

Enemy of the People

 

The State claims Ms. Grant is the “enemy of the people."  Let us reason together. Do we agree the legal system is overburdened?  If Public Defenders are the hard-working servants they are expected to be, to keep the wheels of justice rolling smoothly, or rolling at all, then would it not behoove “the people," the inmates, and the government as a whole, to enlist the services of passionate volunteers (Ms. Grant has never accepted compensation in any form for the helps she has provided).  In fact, these dastardly prison tapes verify Ms. Grant - a dental assistant, used her own money to provide postage or basic supplies to indigent inmates - to the sum of $3.00.  She states she is still paying for collect call bills she accepted from inmates. All sixteen or so inmates claim none of Nancy's helps hurt their case, several claim it was helpful. Others, in other interviews, say her help was instrumental in their release, or a more fair sentence. I'm confused. Please explain more about the “enemy of the people thing."

 

The ConstiWHAT?

 

Bill of Rights, instructions for filling out forms, selection of forms, free speech, inherent power to the people--  apparently that's now Unlicensed Practice of Law to talk about. Or is it a monopoly that Ms. Grant spoke of?  Is it a criminal or civil statute?  As Mooney said, an overbroad law with “huge holes” like the one allowing corporate officers to represent their corporations, or allowing prison inmates to practice law with impunity, which evidence shows that a prison inmate prepared documents, not Ms. Grant.  Not even the state's high-energy young lawyer seemed to know after 10 years prosecuting UPL, appearing quite confused after cross-examination by Mr. Mooney exactly if UPL is civil or criminal. Due Process? Time for defense seemed a low priority with the court.

 

Sniff Sniff

 

Does anyone smell something here?  Something to me smells a bit stinky. I'm not seeing where the problem is. Several potential jurors who wanted nothing to do with this “victimless crime” either,  made a quick exit. No inmate testified that his case was hurt in any way from Nancy. Other allegations include racketeering, forced plea deals, and monopolies by the Florida Bar which is not registered with the State as a legal entity.

 

I Thought They Banned Slavery?

 

M. Andy Mooney - Bradenton, Fl,  was ordered by the court as Ms. Grants attorney - (Public Defender);  however…Ms. Grant states he may not get paid by the State for his one week of trial.  He has put forth a brave effort and should be commended for this. 

 

 

TRIAL INFORMATION RELEASE:

Date: Monday August 20, 2007

Time: 9:00 AM

Place:  DesotoCounty Courthouse

Address: 115 Oak St.

City: Arcadia, Fl 34266

Phone: 863-993-4876

Second Floor

  

 

Jury selection has been accomplished.   M. Andrew Mooney of Bradenton, FL is representing Ms. Grant. As Judge Lee Haworth instructed the jury candidates “there is no victim to this crime," some potential jury candidates smelled something gone awry in this one and backed out, saying “there's something wrong here, I don't want to be a part of this.” State Attorney Hartery repeated ^3 that Ms. Grant received no compensation which raises more questions in jurists minds. Ever hear of the “clean hands doctrine?"

 

August 8: Judge Lee Haworth enters an ORDER FOR LIMINE on its own initiative.  See the following excerpts and download it: 

Download: Order in Limine.pdf 

Download Hartery's jury instructions:  CCF11302006_00000.pdf   He claims even though she received no compensation, that is no defense.      

"A. Introduction in the Jury's Presence of a "Racketeering" or Necessity Defense is Prohibited

Defendant is charged with 28 counts of the unlicensed practice of law (UPL). The state claims to have evidence that for a period of time spanning the seven months of March through September of 2006, Mrs. Grant engaged in the unauthorized practice of law by recruiting "clients" for the Florida Pro Se Bar, Inc., a corporation the prosecution says was created by defendant for the purposes of facilitating the illegal practice of law.:  and…

B. The Introduction of Issues Previously Argued or Ruled Upon by the Court Is Prohibited in the Presence of the Jury

Since the filing of the information, defendant has asserted a number of legal issues by argument, motion or pleading. Some of these are impertinent, such as her "Affidavit of Criminal Complaint" filed against prosecutor Don Hartery and others, and defendant's "Notice to Prosecutor to Prove Claim or Dismiss." .and

 C. Other Prohibited Subjects

In addition to the foregoing, the following in limine provisions are in effect at trial.

NO REFERENCE TO POSSIBLE PENALTY: There shall be no comment by counsel to the jury regarding the possible penalty that may result from a conviction. In other words, statements that a conviction would subject a defendant to prison or ruin are not permitted. See Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.390(a) (1985),  Kocsis v.State, 467 So. 2d 384 (Fla. 5th  DCA 1985), and  Coleman v. State, 484 So. 2d 624 (Fla. 1st  DCA 1986). For the defense to insinuate penalties into argument is to suggest an improper basis for the jury's decision. The jury should decide a case according to the law and the evidence presented and disregard the consequences of its verdict. See Nixon v. State, 572 So. 2d 1336 (Fla. 1990).

 Mrs. Grant is particularly vexed with the Hon. James S. Parker, Desoto County's resident circuit judge, who she sees as her main nemesis and the target for her most vitriolic and inflammatory accusations. Their paths first crossed in 1984 when in response to a petition filed by the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services Judge Parker took judicial action on a dependency case involving her children, something that was not warmly received by her. Much later, in 2003 he sentenced one of her sons to state prison for arson, and in 2006 another son pled before Judge Parker to the offense of sexual battery on an underage female relative and is currently in prison. In light of this history, a fair-minded person could conclude her assumed pose as a muckraker and whistleblower is not that of an impartial, public spirited citizen.

 In any event, Mrs. Grant claims Judge Parker in combination with other officials are engaged in a conspiracy to deprive inmates of the Desoto County jail of their civil rights. They do this, she alleges, by warehousing prisoners in jail for lengthy periods, depriving them of public hearings, then conducting "secret hearings" at which time they are threatened with long prison sentences until they agree to plead guilty. She accuses local attorneys who are appointed to represent these jailed defendants, both public defender and private, of doing nothing for their clients except sell them out, leaving them with "no defense." Collectively she refers to this potpourri of criminality as "racketeering," and for simplicity's sake, the court will refer to it as the "Racketeering Defense… and

 NO JURY NULLIFICATION ARGUMENTS: Defense may not encourage the jury to disregard the law. Harding v. State. 736 So.2d 1230, 1231 (Fla. 2d DCA 1999). Such arguments weaken the court system and encourage jurors to violate their oaths, and accordingly "have no place at trial." Id; United States Trujillo 714 F.2d 102, 105 (11th Cir.1983) ("neither the court nor counsel should encourage jurors to violate their oaths").

 NO SPEAKING OBJECTIONS: Both the defense and State shall refrain from making legal arguments in the presence of the jury in the form of "speaking objections" and shall object by stating legal grounds based on the Florida Evidence Code. If additional time is required to argue an objection, the movant may request a bench conference.

NO GOLDEN RULE ARGUMENTS: Counsel are prohibited from making statements to the jury suggesting that jurors put themselves in defendant's or a victim's position, such as "If this criminal prosecution happened to you, how would you (a juror) feel."

 NO PANDERING TO GAIN SYMPATHY: Neither party shall seek to elicit sympathy for themselves or a victim by attempting to get the jury to pity or feel sorry for them. For example, statements by a defendant to the jury such as "I could not afford an attorney or the cost of discovery, so I was prevented from preparing a decent defense," are prohibited.

 D. Rules for Self-Represented Parties

At the pre-trial conference, the court reviewed its Rules for Self-Represented Parties with Mrs. Grant. A copy is attached. The defendant is ordered to read, understand, and comply with the Rules, and the provisions of this Trial Order In Limine. If confused about any rule or prohibition in limine, defendant should ask the court for clarification before trial. Criminal contempt sanctions, including incarceration, may be employed by the court for willful violations.

 Therefore, the court orders that while in the presence of the jury, without prior consent of the court, the defendant shall make no reference to the subject matter or issues raised in any motion or filings made by her in this case since the filing of the original information on June 26, 2006, nor shall she comment on the court's rulings on such subjects.” 

Ever read the Supreme court's opinion? (See quote from the Florida Bar's website):  

 "UPL is a product of Florida Supreme Court case law. A broad, general definition and a three ­part test were outlined in the State of Florida v. Sperry, 140 So. 2d 587 (Fla. 1962).
"We think that in determining whether the giving of advice and counsel and the performance of services in legal matters for compensation constitute (emphasis mine) the practice of law it is safe to follow the rule that if the giving of such advice and performance of such services affect important rights of a person under the law, and if the reasonable protection of the rights and property of those advised and served requires that the persons giving such advice possess legal skill and knowledge of the law greater than that possessed by the average citizen, then the giving of such advice and the performance of such services by one for another as a course of conduct constitute the practice of law."

 Nancy's (selective prosecution?) trial opens up the whole UPL can of worms, which several states have repealed the same laws. George C. Leef is president of Patrick Henry Associates and an adjunct scholar with the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. He earned a J.D. from Duke University in 1977 says:

 Lawyer Fees Too High?
The Case for Repealing Unauthorized Practice of Law Statutes - see
http://www.cato.org/pubs/regulation/reg20n1.html

 

      See also http://www.freewebs.com/floridaprosebar/fromtheeditor.htm

      See also href="../../index.html">http://www.jail4judges.org

See also http://www.Parentadvocates.org includes pleadings and downloads

  

 -PRESS RELEASE
August 8, 2007
 
My name is Nancy Jo Grant. On March 22, 2006,  I blew the whistle on the racketeering, closed-door hearings, forced plea deals, bogus trials and the warehousing of inmates in the DeSoto County Courthouse,   12th Judicial Circuit, and DeSoto County Jail in Florida. Three months later, June 29, 2006 I was arrested and a gag order placed on me. Judge James S. Parker ordered that I was not allowed to talk to any inmates or any inmate's family members about anything going on at the jail or courthouse as condition of my bond,   which was set at $50,000.  

     For six years I collected evidence that proves: All who pass through the criminal justice system have no defense prepared in their behalf. The innocent and guilty go the same route, they are kept in jail until they break down and take plea deals. In 100% of the cases I researched, not one person had a defense prepared by the private retained attorneys, or the public defenders. The only information in their case files was prosecution side only, the attorneys are all getting paid for doing nothing, hence the racketeering behind closed doors forcing inmates to accept plea deals and until they do they are warehoused.

      In 2005 I formed a non-profit corporation called the FPB, Florida Pro se Bar, Inc. to educate individuals who choose to represent themselves, (inside and outside the walls). The State of Florida charged me with (UPL), Unlicensed Practice of Law pursuant to Florida Statutes 454.23 a felony with a penalty of five years in prison. The Florida Bar is using this statute to attack any person in Florida that interferes in their commerce.

    I am being maliciously prosecuted for blowing the whistle on the illegal activities by the court and jail. The assistant state attorney, created jury instructions just for my case and when these jury instructions are used at my trial, August 20, 2007 they will restrict our First Amendment Rights to speak and write. These jury instructions, for example make it against the law for a private person to contact an official, such as a clerk of court, for information on behalf of an incarcerated person.

    Historically, the same judge on whom I blew the whistle was the same judge who illegally took my four children in 1984. My story reached a national level when it was aired on a televised documentary, and Judge Parker returned my children the next morning. That experience made me what I am today, a civil rights advocate. I am to be tried by the same court that I accused of racketeering, holding the closed-door hearings, forcing plea deals, bogus trials and warehousing inmates.  

For further information please contact:

Nancy Jo Grant
803 E. Magnolia Street, Arcadia, Florida 34266
ngrant@strato.net, (863) 494-0363
  
Vital Contact Info:

Clerk of Court phone number:

 

Contact Information:

 

Judge Parkers office

(863) 993-4644

 

Desoto Court Clerk

 Mitzie McGavic- Clerk

Phone Number:

(863) 993-4876

Fax Number:

(863) 993-4669

Address:

115 East Oak Street, Room 101
Arcadia, FL 34266

Office Hours:

Monday - Friday
8:00am - 5:00pm

E-Mail Address:

Mitzie.McGavic@desotoclerk.com

Hotlinks

Meet Our Clerk

 

Judge Parkers office:
(863) 993-4644
 

THIS IS YOUR FREEDOM TOO - MAKE YOUR VOICE KNOWN!