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Topic: IT'S TIME FOR A NEW SHERIFF! Taxpayers get the bill!
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Jamie Curtis and 2 others shared Frank Manley's post.
Frank Manley


I have always believed in personal integrity and the idea of helping others. I have followed the mantra of my namesake Frank J. Manley Sr. , that it is more important to help my community and those truly in need then to be part of any particular "popular" group of people which may bestow personal gain upon me. Many times in my profession, it means representing unpopular people or causes. Sometimes politically it means standing up and being counted against the entrenched special interests. It means not just going along because it is a much easier path.
I share these views because of the contentious Genesee County Sheriff's election. I have known Sheriff Pickell for many years. In fact, before he was sheriff, I employed him as an investigator on a number of cases. I have supported him for sheriff in past elections. My over 30 years of legal experience in this county and my knowledge of the sheriff and the sheriffs department makes me uniquely qualified to render an educated opinion.
It is time for him to leave. The things that he has engaged in, or allowed, are such that he should not be considered for re-election. The lawsuits, the lapses in judgment, the vicious personal attacks, all speak to someone who believes that the office is his, not held in trust for the people. I have personally told Bob that he should retire. He has turned into someone far more angry, malicious, and dangerous then we can trust with all the power of this department.
Therefore, as someone , who has never been accused, until recently, of being shadowy, I stand up personally and endorse Chief Dan Allen for Sheriff. Change must come.
I ask that you share my message far and wide. This election is that close and that important.

Sincerely,
Frank 🍀
Post Sun Jul 31, 2016 5:44 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Attorneys wanted criminal charges over Facebook posts during sheriff's race

Oona Goodin-Smith | ogoodins@mlive.com By Oona Goodin-Smith | ogoodins@mlive.com

on February 28, 2017 at 6:30 AM, updated February 28, 2017 at 6:32 AM

FLINT, MI -- One of the ugliest political races in recent Genesee County history has taken another twist with revelations that three outspoken critics of Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell sought criminal charges for Facebook accounts they claim made defamatory accusations against them.

Local attorneys Frank Manley, Glen Lenhoff and Scott Bigger filed a criminal complaint in July 2016 stating the accounts were "posting threats against ... character, professionalism and intimidation," according to a Flint Police Department police report obtained by MLive-The Flint Journal.

Manley, Lenhoff and Bigger were involved the New Sheriff in Town Super PAC, which was dedicated to defeating Pickell in the 2016 sheriff election.



The race for the Genesee County Sheriff's Office is turning presidential – at least in terms of the amount of money being used to try and secure the seat.

In August, search warrants authored by Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton's office were sworn out for information on three Facebook profiles -- William Sikes, Matt Lofton and Charley Bates -- as part of the investigation into the complaint, according to the police report.

Pickell said he had no part in creating the Facebook accounts in question.


"I am not Charley Bates," said Pickell. "I didn't create posts, maintain posts or had any part in planning any of this."

The public profile pages in question shared posts from Pickell's Facebook page, as well as statuses opposing Pickell's 2016 primary challenger, Dan Allen.

Posts on the accounts also contained sexual innuendos that threatened the attorneys, according to the police report.

Warrants were served on Facebook to obtain the IP addresses associated with the profiles, according to the report. After obtaining information from Facebook, the report claims additional warrants were served on three internet service providers to identify who the most-frequently used IP addresses were registered to.

The IP addresses from the accounts showed the profiles could be tracked back to the listed address of Scott Hope, executive director of Genesee County's process servers; Hope's company, Allen & Hope Processing; and the home of an Allen & Hope contractor, Chris Lackney.

The earliest public post on Bates' profile dates back to June 15, 2016, while Lofton's appears to have been created around July 5, 2016.

As of Monday, Feb. 27, the Lofton and Bates' accounts remain accessible on Facebook, while Sikes' appears to have been removed.

The last posts on the the Bates and Lofton accounts were Aug. 1 and 2, respectively. The initial search warrant was sworn out Aug. 1.

Despite the police investigation, Hope said he had no part in the accounts other than admiring them from afar as "political satire."

He told MLive-The Flint Journal that his IP address was only connected to the accounts because he "liked" posts from the profiles.

"I don't know if you know how Facebook works, but when you share something or like something [from your personal profile] on an account, your IP address can also be tracked back to that account," Hope told MLive-The Flint Journal.

Hope said he discovered Bates' and Lofton's accounts while reading the comments of another "satire" Facebook profile and began liking posts from the accounts in question because he found them funny.

"I am not these people, I don't have their passwords, I don't know anything about this," he said.

Lackney could not be reached by MLive-The Flint Journal for comment.

Pickell and Hope have a longstanding relationship with the sheriff recently turning to Hope to handle some civil matters for his department.

In December 2016, Pickell wrote a letter stating that "effective January 1, 2017, the Office of Genesee County Sheriff will exclusively use the firm of Allen, Hope & Associates to serve orders for seizure, evictions, claims and delivery, and foreclosures."

Hope and Pickell are also both currently named in a federal racketeering lawsuit that alleges Pickell, Hope and Allen & Hope worked as a "loosely knit business enterprise" designed to "financially enrich" the three and to keep Pickell in office and attack his opponents.

Manley, Lenhoff and Bigger are not involved in the racketeering suit. However, Manley said he believes these types of actions need to be made public.

"This is the kind of behavior that the public needs to know about," said Manley. "This behavior is criminal. The more light that it shines on this case, the more chance proper legal action will be taken."

Sheriff says he's 'never seen the money' alleged in federal racketeering lawsuit

Sheriff says he's 'never seen the money' alleged in federal racketeering lawsuit

Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell says he "has never seen the money" that a federal racketeering lawsuit claims he charged court process servers.

However, Pickell denies any wrongdoing and said he has faith in Hope's work with the county.

"I trust Scott Hope -- he's trained these process servers for 18 years," said Pickell. "I have confidence in him, that's why. There is no RICO, that's a phony allegation. That's a fake allegation. That's a lawyer trying to make money. This is the third time he's sued me."

Both Pickell and Hope suggested that the warrants "tell the full story."

The public, however, is barred from seeing those warrants.

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said the warrants were sealed on Sept. 7 by Judge Nathaniel Perry "to protect privacy."

After evaluating the criminal complaint, Leyton said he believes the case is "civil rather [than a] criminal case."

No criminal charges have been filed in connection to the investigation.

"It is the general policy of my office to focus on violent crime, drugs and to protect children and the elderly," Leyton said. "We do not have the manpower nor do we prioritize offensive social media postings as warranting criminal charges. That is best left to the civil arena and not to the taxpayers."
Post Tue Feb 28, 2017 2:07 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Today the county commissioners discussed settlement strategies for 5 lawsuits and at least 3 were related to the Sheriff department, and all in Federal District Court

Michael Donahue vs Lt. Lee and Genesee County USDC 16-11446

Carlton McIntosh vs Deputies Winston, Vanloon, Desisto and Genesee County USDC 16-11248

Wm. Trier vs Sheriff Pickell, et al USDC 17-10236


Another case is Lucille Torpay vs Mark Harrison and Genesee County 15-104952

Also the Gleason vs Genesee County (16-107182) may be getting resolved.
Post Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:42 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

.
Mark Harrison
is the new
jail population monitor and
prebail interviewer as-
signed to the Court Services
Division. Mark attended
the University of Michigan-Flint and received a
bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. In addition, he at-
tended the Flint Police
Academy and the Oakland
County K9 Academy.
Mark spent thirteen years
with the Genesee County
Sheriff Department as a
correctional officer. In his
current role, he primarily
conducts prebail interviews
to provide information on a
defendant’s family ties,
employment, education,
length of residence and oth-
er related matters. This
background information is
provided to a district judge
to assist with release and
bail decisions.
Post Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:10 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Man claims lack of jail medical treatment left him with colostomy bag


By Dominic Adams | dadams5@mlive.com

on March 24, 2017 at 7:00 AM, updated March 24, 2017 at 7:08 AM

FLINT, MI -- A Flint man says his appendix burst, he had to have a piece of his colon removed and now must use a colostomy bag after he was refused medical care while inside the Genesee County Jail. 
Raheen Dudley filed a federal lawsuit against the Genesee County Jail, Dr. Dennis Lloyd, Mona Cross, Corizon Correctional Healthcare and Prison Health Services, Inc., alleging gross negligence and violations of Dudley's civil rights. 
The case was filed on behalf of Dudley by the law firm of Geoffrey Fieger. A representative of the firm could not be reached for comment.

The lawsuit claims his medical problems occurred after being jailed in 2016.
On Sept. 14, Dudley submitted a request for health services at the Genesee County Jail to see a doctor regarding severe pain in his lower stomach, according to the lawsuit filed March 13 in Detroit U.S. District Court. The lawsuit claims the request went unanswered.
Dudley submitted a second request on Sept. 16 because of extreme stomach pains, vomiting, headaches and inability to eat or sleep, the lawsuit said.
He was seen by Nurse Mona Cross the same day and it was documented he had a fever of 100 degrees, but Dr. Dennis Lloyd refused to treat Dudley and Cross refused to send Dudley for emergency treatment, according to the lawsuit.
The next day, Sept. 17,  Dudley sent another request for health treatment and complained of shortness of breath, terrible pain in his lower stomach, vomiting for three days, severe headaches, difficulty walking and sleeping.
He also asked to go to the hospital because it felt like a "life or death situation," the lawsuit alleges.
Five days after Dudley began complaining, on Sept. 19, he was seen by Dr. Lloyd and was given Tylenol and a urinalysis was performed, the lawsuit alleges. Lloyd diagnosed Dudley with possible appendicitis and it was recommended he be sent to the emergency room for evaluation.
On Sept. 20, six days after his initial complaint, Dudley had surgery, according to the lawsuit.
"Despite filling out repeat requests for medical treatment, he was not seen," the lawsuit claims. "His symptoms progressed and he still was not seen by a physician. Ultimately, his appendix burst and he had to undergo bowel resection. A piece of his colon had to be removed and he has to wear a colostomy bag."
The lawsuit claims Lloyd and Cross were working for Corizon Healthcare and could not be reached for comment. Corizon Correctional Healthcare is headquartered in Tennessee and has 301 facilities in 22 states.
"Though we cannot comment specifically on any of our patients' medical histories or when there is active litigation, it is important to emphasize the existence of a lawsuit is not necessarily indicative of quality of care or any wrongdoing," Corizon Spokeswoman Martha Harbin said in a statement. "Our doctors and nurses work every day in extremely difficult settings to provide the best possible medical care for our patients."

Dudley was in the Genesee County Jail awaiting trial on charges of armed robbery, one count of assault with intent to rob while armed and felony firearm for a string of robberies that took place at the Hometown Inn in Flint Township in 2013.
Dudley was eventually found guilty and is currently serving a 15-year sentence at Bellamy Creek Correctional Facility in Ionia.
MLive-The Flint Journal could not reach Genesee County Robert Pickell for comment.
Post Fri Mar 24, 2017 11:21 am 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

County settles lawsuit threat over alleged Facebook retaliation by sheriff

Oona Goodin-Smith | ogoodins@mlive.com By Oona Goodin-Smith | ogoodins@mlive.com

on March 24, 2017 at 7:30 AM, updated March 24, 2017 at 7:34 AM

FLINT, MI - Genesee County has agreed to pay an undisclosed amount of money to settle a lawsuit threat regarding alleged "malicious" Facebook posts about the sex life of a public dissenter of Sheriff Robert J. Pickell.

A potential lawsuit complaint - obtained from the county by MLive-The Flint Journal through the Freedom of Information Act - claims local lawyer Glen Lenhoff was "viciously defamed" on Facebook via "fictitious accounts" as retaliation after he spoke out against Pickell during a 2014 sexual misconduct case involving the sheriff's department.

The potential complaint named the county and Pickell as defendants, as well as Scott Hope, executive director of Genesee County's process servers; Hope's company, Allen & Hope Processing; Hope's wife and employee, Charissa Hope; Allen & Hope contractor Chris Lackney; and five anonymous "John Doe" defendants.

Hope and Pickell are also both currently named in a federal racketeering lawsuit that alleges Pickell, Hope and Allen & Hope worked as a "loosely knit business enterprise" designed to "financially enrich" the three and to keep Pickell in office and attack his opponents.
t

Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell says he "has never seen the money" that a federal racketeering lawsuit claims he charged court process servers.

The 10-page potential lawsuit complaint alleges that Lackney, Scott Hope and his company - acting "as representatives or agents" of Pickell - created and posted to Facebook accounts "under fictitious names" in attempts to "attack, defame, libel, malign and retaliate" against Lenhoff.

"The only comment I'll make is on the advice of my attorney - we agreed to settle it because of saving cost, legal fees, and the cost to the county," Pickell said. "The money that was agreed on was far less than it would've cost to take this to court."

In February, the Genesee County Board of Commissioners went into two closed session meetings, emerging to vote to "follow the legal request and recommendation of the sheriff."

Pickell declined to confirm or deny whether the vote was related to the lawsuit threat.


Genesee County Commissioners voted again Monday to follow the recommendations of the sheriff in his department's legal issues.

According to Lenhoff's lawyer, E. Michael Morris, the parties involved "settled [the threatened lawsuit] by mutual agreement and the terms are confidential."

A Freedom of Information Act request by MLive-The Flint Journal for any lawsuit settlements, payments made by the county to settle allegations or prevent a lawsuit over allegations filed against the sheriff involving Lenhoff was denied by the county on the basis that no such records exist at this time.

The county's FOIA denial, however, said that it "is likely there will be settlement documents available as well as payment documentation" within the next 10 days.

The settled threatened lawsuit complaint claimed the retaliation stemmed from Lenhoff's comments to the media critical of the Sheriff's Department regarding a 2014 sexual misconduct case involving former Lt. Michael Chatterson, which resulted in a $500,000 county settlement.

Lenhoff represented several of the female plaintiffs in the case and previously told MLive-The Flint Journal that he thought the sheriff should pay the settlement personally or resign from office.



The settlement comes after the four female deputies claimed they were the victims of repeated sexual misconduct by former Lt. Michael Chatterson, who is currently facing criminal charges over the allegations.

A Flint Police Department report obtained by MLive-The Flint Journal showed that three local lawyers - including Lenhoff - filed a criminal complaint against the sheriff in July 2016 stating three allegedly fictitious Facebook accounts were "posting threats against ... character, professionalism and intimidation."

The attorneys - Frank J. Manley, Lenhoff and Scott Bigger - were involved the New Sheriff in Town Super PAC, which was dedicated to defeating Pickell in the 2016 sheriff election.


The race for the Genesee County Sheriff's Office is turning presidential – at least in terms of the amount of money being used to try and secure the seat.

In August 2016, search warrants authored by Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton's office were sworn out for information on three Facebook profiles -- William Sikes, Matt Lofton and Charley Bates -- as part of the investigation into the complaint, according to the police report.

Inactive for nearly eight months, on Monday, March 20, the Lofton and Bates accounts posted the following nearly-identical statuses -- 15 minutes apart:

As of Thursday, March 23, the Lofton and Bates accounts remain accessible on Facebook, while Sikes' appears to have been removed.

While Pickell declined to comment further on the threatened lawsuit or its allegations, he previously said he had no part in creating the Facebook accounts in question.

"I am not Charley Bates," said Pickell. "I didn't create posts, maintain posts or had any part in planning any of this."

The public profile pages in question shared posts from Pickell's Facebook page, as well as statuses opposing Pickell's 2016 primary challenger, Dan Allen.

Posts on the accounts also contained sexual innuendos that threatened the attorneys, according to the police report.

Warrants were served on Facebook to obtain the IP addresses associated with the profiles, according to the police report. After obtaining information from Facebook, the report claims additional warrants were served on three internet service providers to identify who the most-frequently used IP addresses were registered to.

The IP addresses from the accounts showed the profiles could be tracked back to the listed home addresses of Scott Hope and Lackney, Allen & Hope Processing.

Neither Scott Hope, Charissa Hope, nor Lackney could be reached for comment on the threatened lawsuit.


One of the ugliest political races in recent Genesee County history has taken another twist with revelations that three outspoken critics of Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell sought criminal charges for Facebook accounts they claim made defamatory accusations against them.

However, Scott Hope previously told MLive-The Flint Journal that despite the police investigation, he had no part in the accounts other than admiring them from afar as "political satire."

He told MLive-The Flint Journal that his IP address was only connected to the accounts because he "liked" posts from the profiles.

"I don't know if you know how Facebook works, but when you share something or like something [from your personal profile] on an account, your IP address can also be tracked back to that account," Hope told MLive-The Flint Journal.

Hope said he discovered Bates' and Lofton's accounts while reading the comments of another "satire" Facebook profile and began liking posts from the accounts in question because he found them funny.

However, according to Aaron Mackey, a legal fellow at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a scenario in which the most active IP addresses for a Facebook account are tracked back to multiple addresses of one person for "liking" or "sharing" a post is plausible but "highly unlikely."

"For that story to be true, there would have to be an open internet network in these multiple locations in which someone else was exclusively using that internet to access the account," said Mackey.

Pickell and Hope have a longstanding relationship, and the sheriff recently turned to Hope to handle some civil matters for his department.

In December 2016, Pickell wrote a letter stating that "effective January 1, 2017, the Office of Genesee County Sheriff will exclusively use the firm of Allen, Hope & Associates to serve orders for seizure, evictions, claims and delivery, and foreclosures."

Pickell denied any wrongdoing and said he has faith in Hope's work with the county.

"I trust Scott Hope -- he's trained these process servers for 18 years," said Pickell. "I have confidence in him, that's why. There is no RICO, that's a phony allegation. That's a fake allegation. [Scott Batey, the lawyer who filed the RICO suit] is a lawyer trying to make money. This is the third time he's sued me."

After evaluating the criminal complaint, Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said he believes the case is "civil rather [than a] criminal case."

No criminal charges have been filed in connection to the investigation.

"It is the general policy of my office to focus on violent crime, drugs and to protect children and the elderly," Leyton said. "We do not have the manpower nor do we prioritize offensive social media postings as warranting criminal charges. That is best left to the civil arena and not to the taxpayers."
Post Fri Mar 24, 2017 5:23 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Insurer challenges paying $36.6 million Genesee County jail beating verdict


See video from $36.6M Genesee County Jail excessive force lawsuit
Print Email Dominic Adams | dadams5@mlive.com By Dominic Adams | dadams5@mlive.com

on April 04, 2017 at 1:34 PM, updated April 04, 2017 at 1:38 PM

FLINT, MI -- An insurance company representing Genesee County said in a federal lawsuit that it should not have to help the county pay a $36.6 million trial verdict from a jail beating lawsuit.

Ironshore Specialty Insurance Company filed the lawsuit last month in Detroit U.S. District Court alleging it's not responsible for covering damages against Genesee County after jurors found five jail deputies used excessive force against inmate William Jennings.

The company was the excessive liability insurer for Genesee County at the time Jennings was beaten inside the Genesee County Jail following an arrest for suspected drunken driving on Sept. 18, 2010.

It's asking a federal judge to rule that it has no duty to cover the damages or defend the county in the Jennings case, which was filed in August 2013.


A video released in an excessive force lawsuit shows the actions taken by Genesee County Jail guards that led to a man receiving a $36.6 million verdict.

Jennings suffered a trauma-induced cataract in one eye, a torn rotator cuff, broken facial bones, nerve damage in one of his hands and a chipped tooth as a result of the beating.

Genesee County Board of Commissioners went into executive session on Monday, April 3, to discuss the lawsuit brought by Ironshore, according to Commissioner Bryant Nolden.

"We're just now getting the information," Nolden said. "That's what we were in closed session for, so I really can't discuss that."

Nolden forwarded further questions to the county's corporation counsel. Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton, who serves as corporation counsel, directed questions to attorney Edward Davison, who was hired to represent the county in the case.

Davison said his response to the lawsuit should be filed by the end of the week.

"They don't feel like they should pay," Davison said of Ironshore. "The county, the deputies and I think they should. It's a relative fairly common way of dealing with things with insurance companies."

The lawsuit filed by Ironshore claims the company carried a liability insurance policy for the county that was to cover claims in excess of the county's underlying liability insurance with another company, Everest National Insurance Company.

Genesee County is self-insured to an extent, according to attorney Edward Davison, adding that it was basically like a deductible one would pay on homeowners or auto insurance.

The next layer is the primary liability insurance policy Genesee County has through Everest National Insurance Company, Davison said.

If that policy is extinguished, Davison said, Genesee County is covered by the Ironshore Specialty Insurance policy.

Davison refused to say how much coverage is included at each level.

"I prefer not to divulge that," he said. "That's something that my client likes to keep close to the vest."

County officials refused to release the specific figures and told MLive-The Flint Journal to file a Freedom of Information Act request to get the information. A FOIA request was submitted to the county Tuesday, April 4.

A term of Ironshore's policy required the company be notified in writing "as soon as practical" of a lawsuit that would be likely to involve its policy, according to its lawsuit.

However, Ironshore contends county officials failed to satisfy this condition by waiting to notify it of the case until after jurors reached their verdict on Nov. 3, 2016 -- more than three years after Jennings' lawsuit was initially filed.

Ironshore's lawsuit claims the county and its attorneys should have known the case was likely to involve the excess coverage policy when Jennings' case was filed in 2013 and it alleged nerve injuries, serious burns and severe damage.

Any doubt that the Ironshore policy would be involved should have been removed in July 2015, Ironshore claims, when the trial judge in the Jennings case denied the county's argument it was immune from the lawsuit.

Since notifying Ironshore of the verdict, the lawsuit claims the county and its lawyers have failed to turn over records Ironshore has sought in relation to the Jennings case.

Ironshore also argues it is not responsible for covering the claim because jurors found the jail deputies' actions were "willful, wanton or oppressive" and the county had punitive damages awarded against it.

There were multiple instances of intentional wrongdoing by the deputies, which also excludes Genesee County from coverage, Ironshore argues.

Jennings' lawsuit alleged the jail deputies threw Jennings to the floor, slammed his head against a metal bench, kicked and punched him while he was on the ground, sprayed pepper spray into his mouth and face at close range and placed him in a restraint chair with a hood over his face for several minutes.

Jennings was also strapped down to a restraint bed face down in a cell for more than two hours. The lawsuit claimed the alleged attack was unprovoked and began as Jennings was being searched.

After more than a two-week trial and nearly two days of deliberations, an eight-member jury concluded the deputies used excessive force against Jennings and awarded him past damages of $10.42 million and future damages of $7.21 million, according to a news release from the court.

Jurors reached the verdict against deputies Patrick Fuller, David Kenamer, Mark Wing, Jason White and Lt. Robert Nuckolls.

The jury also awarded punitive damages to Jennings from each defendant as follows:

Fuller -- $5 million.
Kenamer -- $4 million.
Wing -- $3 million.
White -- $2 million.
Nuckolls -- $5 million.
Attorneys representing the five guards have appealed the decision and in multiple motions filed in December with the Detroit U.S. District Court say the two-week jury trial was conducted improperly and that the $36.6 million decision was improper.

The motions are still pending.

Davison said the lawsuit from Ironshore isn't unexpected.

"It is a common way for insurance companies and their insured to resolve their differences," he said. "I prefer to try my cases in the court, not in the press."


The Genesee County jail guards charged with $36.6 million for using excessive force against a prisoner have motioned to appeal the United States District Court's jury decision.

An insurance policy is a contract between the insurance company and its policyholder, according to Pet Kuhnmuench, executive director of Insurance Institute of Michigan.

"In exchange for coverage, the insurance company requires the policyholder to adhere to provisions in the policy," he said. "If those provisions are not met, there may not be coverage.

"An insurance policy is a not a blanket of coverage because the cost of such a product would be out of reach. An insurance policy insures specific risks that are detailed in the policy language and also the responsibilities of the policyholder for obtaining that coverage."
Post Tue Apr 04, 2017 4:18 pm 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Judge slashes $36.6M Genesee County Jail beating verdict
See video from $36.6M Genesee County Jail excessive force lawsuit

Oona Goodin-Smith | ogoodins@mlive.com By Oona Goodin-Smith | ogoodins@mlive.com
Email the author | Follow on Twitter
on May 24, 2017 at 3:42 PM, updated May 24, 2017 at 11:37 PM


DETROIT, MI -- A federal judge has issued a ruling reducing a $36.6 million jury verdict awarded to a man who was pepper sprayed, slammed against a metal bench, shocked with a Taser and kicked and punched while he was restrained face-down at the Genesee County Jail.

Detroit U.S. District Judge Avern Cohn ruled Tuesday, May 23, that, although there's "no doubt" that William Jennings was the victim of excessive force following his 2010 drunken driving arrest, the trial evidence does not support the $36.6 million award.

Instead, in a remittitur, Cohn settled on the "fair and just compensation" of an $11 million payout to Jennings -- $4 million for the past and present damages and $6.24 million in future damages.
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Cohn's ruling significantly reduced punitive damages to Jennings from the five defendants -- deputies Patrick Fuller, David Kenamer, Mark Wing, Jason White and Lt. Robert Nuckolls -- as follows:

Nuckolls -- $2 million, previously $5 million
Fuller - $1 million, previously $5 million
Kenamer - $1 million, previously $4 million
Wing - $1 million, previously $3 million
White - $1 million, previously $2 million.

Jennings has 20 days to accept the remittitur or take the case back to trial.

In his ruling, Cohn also denied the defendants' request for a new trial in the case.



The Genesee County jail guards charged with $36.6 million for using excessive force against a prisoner have motioned to appeal the United States District Court's jury decision.

Filed in 2010, the lawsuit alleged the jail officers threw Jennings to the floor, slammed his head against a metal bench, kicked and punched him while he was on the ground, sprayed pepper spray into his mouth and face at close range and placed him in a restraint chair with a hood over his face for several minutes.

Jennings suffered a trauma-induced cataract in one eye, a torn rotator cuff, broken facial bones, nerve damage in one of his hands and a chipped tooth as a result of the beating.

After a 12-day trial, a jury awarded Jennings a $36.6 million in damages.

In March, Ironshore Specialty Insurance Company -- which represents Genesee County -- filed a lawsuit alleging it's not responsible for covering damages from the suit.

Insurer challenges paying $36.6 million Genesee County jail beating verdict

Insurer challenges paying $36.6 million Genesee County jail beating verdict

It's asking a federal judge to rule that it has no duty to cover the damages or defend the county in the William Jennings case, which was filed in August 2013.

Edward Davison, who represents Genesee County in the insurance lawsuit, said that the judge's grant of the remittitur does not change the legal basis of the suit. Instead, it possibly lessens the amount that county may be on the hook to pay.

Instead of $10 million over the insurance company's policy, the county may only owe $650,000, Davison said.

However, the attorney said it's too soon to consider these possibilities as the ball is in Jennings' court until he chooses whether to accept the judge's ruling.

The lawsuit was filed against the deputies and didn't directly name the county or the jail as defendants, but the county will still be on the hook to cover the verdict against its deputies -- most likely because the incident occurred while they were working as jail guards, Nelson Miller, associate dean and professor at Western Michigan University Cooley Law School, said previously.
Post Thu May 25, 2017 7:46 am 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Jail inmate convulsed on cell floor for days before death, lawsuit claims


Posted on September 19, 2017 at 4:00 PM
s
By Oona Goodin-Smith ogoodins@mlive.com

FLINT, MI - Genesee County Jail deputies ignored a woman moaning, jerking and convulsing on the cement floor of her jail cell for five days, neglecting to provide her with medical care or treatment while she died of alcohol withdrawal, a new lawsuit alleges.

Filed against Genesee County, Sheriff Robert J. Pickell and eight unnamed corrections officers on Friday, Sept. 15, in Detroit U.S. District Court, the lawsuit requests in excess of $75,000 for the family of Kerrie Milkiewicz, a 48-year-old inmate who died after five days in the jail in March.

But Pickell says the suit's claims are "simply not true."

"There's a protocol in our detox program," Pickell said after speaking with jail medical staff. "She was only in jail for five days, but during those five days she was seen by a doctor and treated in the infirmary. Obviously, she had to return to the holding cell, but she spent a considerable amount of time in treatment."

According to the lawsuit - filed by Detroit-area attorney Geoffrey Fieger - Genesee County Jail deputies ignored information from Milkiewicz's sister that the woman "suffered from acute alcoholism and high blood pressure and was in immediate need of medical treatment," instead lodging Milkiewicz "in a holding cell without providing any medical treatment to her."


While in the jail's holding cell, the lawsuit claims Milkiewicz suffered "obvious and typical signs" of delirium tremens, a rapid onset of confusion often caused by withdrawal from alcohol.

Inmate dies after five days in Genesee County Jail
Inmate dies after five days in Genesee County Jail
After five days in the county jail, Kerrie Gay Milkiewicz, 48, died on Tuesday, March 21, according to records obtained by MLive-The Flint Journal through a Freedom of Information Act request.

Deputies also allegedly disregarded pleas from fellow female cellmates on Milkiewicz's behalf, at one point removing "the person who was speaking out the loudest that [Milkiewicz] needed immediate medical help, and simply ignored [Milkiewicz] who was lying on the floor, rocking, moaning and convulsing," the lawsuit states.

Fieger claims that due to Milkiewicz's treatment while in jail, Milkiewicz was deprived of her Fourth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights.

An investigation by Pickell's office deemed that no foul play was involved in the case, the sheriff said, noting that Milkiewicz's cause of death was determined to be atherosclerosis, or the hardening of the artery walls.

In Michigan, county sheriffs are left to use their own judgment in determining whether to ask for help from the state police or the Michigan Sheriff's Association in investigating the deaths of jail inmates.

Genesee County sheriff won't ask for outside help in jail death investigations

Milkiewicz, of Flint, was remanded to the jail on Thursday, March 16, in Flushing District Court by Judge David J. Goggins, dying five days later on March 21, according to records obtained by MLive-The Flint Journal through a Freedom of Information Act request.

In January, she pleaded not guilty to a charge of operating while intoxicated and was scheduled for a pre-trial hearing in Genesee County Central District Court on Thursday, March 23.
Post Wed Sep 20, 2017 9:26 am 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Archie Bailey: The McArthur Letter
13 hrs ·
The subpoena…I knew it was coming!
👨‍⚖️ like and share so other taxpayers know about the federal lawsuit against Sheriff Pickell
RECAP
▪️ I was subpoenaed for looking into the RICO lawsuit against the Sheriff
▪️ Why does the Sheriff want to quiet a journalist investigating a lawsuit against Genesee County taxpayers?
▪️ Did the Sheriff reward campaign donors?
The McArthur Letter (below) has been following developments in the federal civil RICO lawsuit in court in Detroit for several months. The plaintiffs are some of the 40 deputized process servers fired by Pickell the day after winning the 2016 election. The sheriff gave the deputies’ jobs to Pickell’s pal Scott Hope and his process serving company. Scott Hope had contributed approximately one-third of the staggering $250,000 raised by the Committee to Retain Pickell.
The McArthur Letter has monitored, and will continue to monitor, every development in the federal RICO lawsuit…and to report any development to readers. Facebook has advised me that the article below received approximately 26,000 readers.
I knew the subpoena was coming.
On the evening of August 14 there was a tap-tap-tap on my door. I looked out and thought the visitor was one of my grandsons. Instead, a young man was standing there. He asked: “are you Archie Bailey?” I responded “yes.” He said: “Here.” He handed me two sheets of paper. I immediately recognized a subpoena. The young man turned to leave. I asked if he wanted me to sign an Acknowledgement of Receipt. No response. May I see your ID I asked? No response and he was gone.
I had fundamental questions about the validity of the service. Initially, I considered filing an objection with the court, but I decided it would be best to comply and not delay or complicate the RICO lawsuit in Detroit. I still view the subpoena as a violation of my privacy rights with no legitimate reason for requesting information from me. I am not a party to the RICO lawsuit. I am a reporter, commentator, editor of an online newsletter.
The subpoena’s stationary was official federal court stationary, but not signed by an officer of the federal court. Instead, it was prepared and signed by a local Genesee County lawyer representing Pickell, Scott Hope, the Genesee County Board of Commissioners and probably various others. An entirely lawful process, despite the fact that I am not a party to the RICO lawsuit in any way.
The McArthur Letter’s goal is to find the facts and share them with the public. It was The McArthur Letter that alerted readers to the sheriff’s attempt, with the help of his two acolytes on the board of commissioners, to increase his own salary by $40,000 ($10,000x4) and the commissioners’ salaries by $20,000.
It was also The McArthur Letter that exposed the fact that a new County Controller (CPA) hired by the county commissioners after a lengthy nationwide search resigned after two weeks on the job. The most important word in the letter of resignation: impossible!
Over the years I have been served with many subpoenas in various roles: as a school board member, community college trustee, university board member, city councilman, mayor and county commissioner. Indeed, I could write a book entitled: “Subpoenas ‘R’ Us.”
However, this most recent subpoena DEMANDED (the attorney’s emphasis) the following: “any documents, notes, emails, attachments to emails, post’s [sic] and letters referencing Robert J. Pickell, Genesee County Sheriff, Genesee County Sheriff Department, Scott Hope, Charissa Hope, Christopher Lackney, Allen & Hope Process Serving Management Company, Inc and any of assumed names (Allen-Hope Associates)…include copies of documents above written by you or any other person…this includes copies of complaints, both civil and criminal, warrant, the results of said warrant and any police reports please indicate who provided the document.”
In the spirit of cooperation my very capable attorney and I sifted through this list of demands. His professionalism kept him from using the words “fishing expedition,” but clearly that’s what this subpoena represented. Some of the demands were easy to fulfill. For example: “Genesee County Sheriff Department.” There are probably thousands of pages of information available to fulfill this demand. I suggested that they read Sgt. Joe Boulton’s thoughtful and well-written book: “MURDER of a Career…conspiracy in county government.” Sgt. Boulton provides insight into the Genesee County Sheriff’s department. MURDER…is available from amazon.com.
Another excellent resource I should have mentioned is Dr. Bernard A. Weisberger’s “The Dream Maker: William C. Durant: Founder of General Motors.” A powerful resource for information regarding the Genesee County area. Hopefully these two references would fulfill the demand: “Genesee County Sheriff Department.”
Most of the other demanded documents are public documents available to anyone via the County’s Freedom of Information Coordinator (FOIA) Ms. Celeste Bell whose staff does an exceptional job providing information or denying information, based on the law. I also recommended a search of the archives of MLive-The Flint Journal. I did not respond with any documents available to the public.
The subpoena demanded copies of documents written by me “or any other person.” Now that one was a real puzzler. In 1977, I did publish a dissertation while at Michigan State University parts of which later became state law. I have also published a variety of articles over the years, but “writings of any other person?” We had no idea what they were looking for.
Warrants? The subpoena’s author talks about warrants. Yes, there are warrants. In fact, there are 14. Pickell’s re-election campaign team posted several Facebook pages attacking not only Pickell’s opponent, but a group of attorneys who really knew what was happening inside the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department.
The attorneys were actively campaigning for Pickell’s opponent based on that information. Pickell must have been terrified. It wasn’t a case of sour grapes. The attorneys had won millions for their clients paid by county taxpayers. They knew plenty about Pickell and the operation of the sheriff’s department. To fight back against the issues the attorneys were discussing, campaigners for Pickell spread malicious, vitriolic messages on Facebook pages regarding the three attorneys. The Facebook attacks were viewed by family, friends, the legal community and the public. Readers were appalled, especially those with young children.
After the election one of the attorneys asked the Flint Police Department to investigate the source of ownership of at least three Facebook pages that specifically targeted the attorneys. Everyone has their own definition of pornography. To this writer some of the postings are clearly pornographic. Desperation and fear of a Pickell defeat motivated Pickell’s campaigners to go low. Hard to believe? You decide. This is what one of the detectives wrote in his final report: “…I did observe the below postings on the above Facebook pages. It should be noted as time goes on the posts are becoming more egregious with focus on July 21, 2016 where it is insinuating that attorney xxxxx performed oral sex on attorney xxxxx to secure funding for Dan Allen’s (Pickell’s opponent) campaign.” Faces of the attorneys were attached. All visible to family, friends, and others.
The outstanding work of the Flint Detective Bureau working closely with one of the most professional and experienced assistant prosecuting attorneys very carefully prepared 14 warrants based on the results of their investigation. Ownership of the Facebook pages with the actual street addresses of the Facebook creators was obtained with warrants. Two of the addresses are worth noting here. The detectives identified one address as that of Scott Hope's semi-resort in East Jordan, Michigan. Another address was that of a Genesee County residence owned by Scott Hope. Other locations were also identified.
All 14 Warrants are now public information. So why are Pickell, Hope, the Genesee County Board of Commissioners et al asking me for copies of “sealed warrants?” Apparently, there was a time when information in the warrants was so hurtful to a county official that the warrants were sealed. I have no knowledge of the identification of the person targeted in the Facebook page(s).
The warrants were presented to Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton. Did Prosecutor David Leyton act on the 14 warrants prepared by Flint detectives and the assistant prosecutor? The answer is no. The reason? Watch for the next post of The McArthur Letter.
To date I have received no response to the material submitted as demanded in the subpoena.
##
The McArthur Letter LLC
****************************************************
(Note: I have information regarding a check I want to share with readers. It’s one of many. The check is made out to Sheriff Robert Pickell in the amount of $250. The check is drawn from the account of one of the 40 deputized process servers fired by Pickell. Pickell gave all process serving business to Allen-(Scott) Hope Process Serving after the election. The check made out to Pickell was endorsed by Scott Hope and either cashed or deposited with a local financial institution. This information is a matter of public record. No allegations of wrong-doing here, nothing unlawful, but since there are multiple checks made out to Robert Pickell, Bob Pickell, Sheriff Robert Pickell endorsed by Scott Hope and either cashed or deposited…well…stay tuned.)
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The McArthur Letter LLC
****************************************************
Post Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:29 am 
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untanglingwebs
El Supremo

Archie Bailey: The McArthur Letter
22 mins ·
Why is Sheriff Pickell bullying me?
➡️Facing a class-action lawsuit, the Sheriff is trying to silence me
➡️Like and share so concerned citizens are aware
Sheriff Pickell’s history of mismanagement, financial overreach and lawsuits would be constant front page news if there was a proper newspaper in this town.
Now that he is facing a class action lawsuit, Trier et al v. Genesee County, Sheriff Pickell has sent his high priced attorneys to silence me. The Sheriff is trying to stop me from letting concerned citizens know about another lawsuit that could potentially cost Genesee County taxpayers a lot of money.
I am a reporter. Plain and simple. I look into issues that matter to Genesee County taxpayers. Just because I report facts on Facebook doesn’t make me any lesser a journalist.
That's what makes the Sheriff’s actions so incredible. He is trying to bully me into silence. I will not be silent.
Below is a recap of my experience being served with a subpoena from just one of the attorneys that work for Sheriff Pickell.
~~~
Subpoenas have consequences. I believe, as others do, that the subpoena cited in the post below was grossly, improperly served. Despite that fact, I agreed to comply since the subpoena dealt with the civil-RICO lawsuit involving the Genesee County Board of Commissioners, the sheriff and others in federal court in Detroit. My preference was not to delay the lawsuit.
The subpoena was presented on federal court stationary, but was not signed by an Officer of the Court. The document was signed, and the demands were made, by a local attorney unknown to me. I am not a party to the lawsuit. I am a reporter who provides readers detailed information about the lawsuit and other developments generally unknown to the public.
The defendants must believe I have crucial information beneficial to their defense.
As a reporter, I work to present readers with facts indicating something serious and consequential is occurring. Trier et al v. Genesee County, Robert Pickell et al is a civil-RICO lawsuit (RICO= Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act) is a very serious lawsuit.
The post below The McArthur Letter LLC described how in the past the Flint Journal would assign a reporter full-time to cover Trier et al v. Genesee County (the Board of Commissioners), Robert Pickell et al. Today that’s impossible. Online newsletters, Facebook pages and a variety of other local sources online and in print must provide information to the public.
Since the attorney who signed the subpoena demanded that I provide various documents and other sources of information, and the fact that he is an attorney unknown to me, I decided to recruit my very capable personal attorney. He advised me that I had three options: 1) ignore the subpoena (consequences unknown), 2) file a Motion in federal court to quash the subpoena (would require hiring a federal litigator at great personal expense), 3) gather and submit the information demanded in the subpoena. I opted for option 3.
My attorney, his assistant and I organized the information demanded in the subpoena. Nothing of a confidential nature, nor names of sources was included.
Out of professional courtesy and cooperation my attorney hand-delivered two packets of information on two separate occasions to the defendants’ attorney in a timely manner.
Subsequently, as a person not a party to the lawsuit, I submitted what I considered to be a reasonable bill for my attorney and his assistant’s time to the defendants’ attorney. Remember that I am a total bystander to the lawsuit in question. The bill for my attorney’s legal services was modest and I paid the bill promptly. I did not charge for my time spent on the project.
I forwarded a letter to the defendants’ attorney seeking reimbursement for my attorney’s invoice.
The defendants’ attorney responded to my request for reimbursement, in fact…this is his entire letter: “Dear Mr. Bailey: I am in receipt of your correspondence of September 27 and attached invoice from your attorney. First and foremost, I would like to thank you for your prompt response to my Subpoena. However, I must inform you that while my clients will reimburse you for the reasonable costs incurred for documentation reproduction, a request for reimbursement for attorney fees with respect to a request for document production is not reasonable. Consequently, your request for reimbursement is denied. Very truly yours…”
The defendants’ attorney makes it very clear in his letter that the decision to deny reimbursement was NOT his. He states that HIS CLIENTS made the decision not to reimburse. I’m sure he doesn’t want his name posted in The McArthur Letter.
His clients: the Board of Commissioners and the sheriff et al will argue that they are guardians of the taxpayers’ purse and must spend every dollar wisely. Yet, their own legal expenses which may already range in the hundreds of thousands of dollars are paid by Genesee County taxpayers. The amount climbs as you read this message. Not one dollar comes out of their pockets. I’ll be naming each of them soon. I note here that the sheriff was granted approval to hire his own personal attorney who will be paid by county taxpayers.
The Board of Commissioners is notoriously silent on all issues involving the county sheriff.
My attorney who understands the sanctity of freedom of the press writes: “On behalf of Archie… I am respectfully requesting that you reconsider your decision with this attorney fee request. Archie as a commentator, blogger and public citizen considers this to be a matter of high principle and, therefore, will need to take the matter to Judge Steeh if this matter cannot be resolved. I trust you and your clients understand his position in the matter.”
Donald Trump has tweeted his wish to make serious changes to FCC regulations, especially those related to news reporting. He also tweeted a threat to shut down news organizations. Does this subpoena that reads like a legal jigsaw puzzle and its consequences, issued at the local level, merit supervision?
I want to note here that my attorney was also served with a subpoena by the attorney representing the defendants in the civil-RICO lawsuit. We have not discussed the content of that subpoena.
My Facebook page: The McArthur Letter LLC attracts approximately 8,000 readers nightly. Facebook recently reported that in a single ninety-day period The McArthur Letter LLC was read by approximately 26,000 Facebook subscribers in the Genesee County area. Genesee County taxpayers want information.
Stay tuned to this issue…
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The McArthur Letter LLC
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Archie Bailey: The McArthur Letter
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