A Low-Down Dirty Shame: Corrupt Sheriff Found Guilty; Popular Defense Attorney also Found Guilty turns on Sheriff for Plea Deal

Whenever a company is found to have put out a bad product, whether it be a food product or a manufacturing product, they are morally responsible to inform the public about the product’s defect. Companies usually do this by “recalling” the product using mass media networks.

On Sunday, May 6, 2012, I sat and watched the T.V. show 60 Minutes. I don’t remember when was the last time I’d watched the show but I was glad to have caught last night’s episode reported by Byron Pitts. He reported on how two brave young reporters took down the Whitley County Sheriff back in 2009. Whitley County is located in Kentucky. The sheriff and his friend (a popular local defense attorney) were found to be low-down and dirty. Which is where I got today’s headline.

While watching Byron Pitts segment, I couldn’t help but to think about the Leon Count Sheriff’s Office and the State Attorney’s Office and their handlings of not just my son’s case but other cases that have passed through their jurisdiction. Some Leon County Sheriff employees have come out and exposed some of the unethical practices that are being exercised in the workplace. Some of the employees clearly stating that Sheriff Larry Campbell operates under the ‘Good Ole Boy’ network (sounds familiar). No corrupt leader serves justice to the community. Which leads me back to product “recall”.

When a sheriff is believed to be corrupt, it is only fair for the community to take action and make the sheriff answer direct questions from ordianary citizens. If he/ she cannot answer the questions directly, then a special election needs to be put into effect immediately (recall). Because it’s our tax dollars that are going to pay for that sheriff’s corrupt actions. Who do you think is paying for the death of Rachel Hoffman? Not the Tallahassee Police Department. Her parents were awarded 2.4 million dollars! So if you don’t live long enough to pay them off, your children will pick up where you left off. Especially if your income is within the lower to middle-class income bracket. Remember–it’s the citizens within the upper-class income bracket that gets all of the tax breaks. And more than likely the head of a law enforcement agency is with out a doubt within that upper-class income bracket. So now–you tell me–how does a corrupt leader serve the community?

If you’re interesed in viewing/ reading the segment about the corrupt sheriff in Whitley County, click on the 60 Minutes link below:


8th Annual Capitol City Challenge

On May 5, 2012, law enforcement officers from FSU, TPD and the Leon County Sheriff’s Department rode their bikes through various obstacle courses. This event was held to award officers, as well as to raise money for the Special Olympics Program for the Leon County district and Kids First Fund.

As the legal guardian of a special needs child (my 17-year-old nephew), my family has reaped great benefits of the funds raised through these types of events. From middle school through high school, my nephew has competed in many different Special Olympics competitions. He’s won plenty of Gold and Silver medals in Track and Field (he wears his medals proudly). He especially loves the medals that he has won in the Annual Special Olympics at Disney World.

My nephew, who is in his senior year of high school, was front and center when Detective Don Odham, Lt. Timothy Baxter, Deputy Clifton Couch, Deputy Brian Pearson and two other unknown deputies aggressively badgered my son’s 21-year-old co-worker/ roommate in the parking lot of the young man’s apartment complex. All but one deputy were acting like a group of bullies. They were taking turns on this obvious frightened young man. They were literally playing good cop/ bad cop with this young man. It was a scary sight for even me to have witnessed. That’s why as an adult–as a praying mother, I was not all that surprised when I read the probable cause arrest warrant. In the arrest warrant it states that this same young man admitted to knowing that my son was in possession of firearms and he (the young man) drove my son to the residence and sat in the car in a dark driveway across the street from the residence, mind you–this young man is not under arrest. As a matter of fact, the State Attorney’s office has teamed up with the sheriff’s office in practicing bullying. You see this young man has pending charges. So everytime that my son’s trial date changes, the young man’s trial date changes–always a week or two after my son’s trial date. If the State Attorney’s office and the Leon County Sheriff’s office aren’t holding their feet on this young man’s throat then I’m not a God fearing woman. But the most disheartening thing that happened directly after the deputies finished bullying the young man was when the deputies flat out told that boldfaced lie and then handcuffed my son. My special needs nephew and my 8-year-old great-niece witnessed everything. Deputy Couch, who was ordered by Lt. Baxter to place my son under arrest, removed the handcuffs off of my son because they knew that they were lying. Both my nephew and my great-niece knew that they’d lied. At one point both of them asked me, “why are the police lying on Shon?” How does a parent answer a question like that? How do you make a child see good in law enforcement officers, when they have witnessed them tell a boldfaced lie?

Fortunately, like I mentioned earlier—I am a praying mother—and I was able to explain to them that all police officers are not bad people—all of them are not liars. Unfortunately, because of the mounting lies of the Leon County bullies, my family is facing financial and mental hurdles that are sometimes overwhelming. And because of this, my nephew was not able to participate in any of the Special Olympics events this year. What should’ve been his best year of high school—senior events, prom and graduation—was tarnished by bullies that represented the very agency that was behind the highlights of his previous high school years.

Jury finds Orlando Cop Not Guilty of Roughing Up Teen

A jury Friday night took a little more than an hour to find an Orlando police officer not guilty of shoving a teenager to the ground, punching him and illegally detaining him and his girlfriend.
Dante Candelaria, 39, then a member of the department’s gang unit, was charged with two felony counts of false imprisonment and one count of misdemeanor battery.
“I can start walking with my head up now without the ridicule of the public,” Candelaria after the verdict.
The case began Jan. 28, 2011 when Candelaria — who was awarded a state medal of heroism for saving a grandmother from an apartment fire in 2005 — tried to pull over the brother of Emilie Rodriguez, then 15. The brother, Juan Rodriguez fled.
To try to find Juan Rodriguez, Candelaria approached Emilie and her boyfriend, Bryan Payne, then 17, Assistant State Attorney Steve Foster told the jury Thursday.
Emilie testified that as she left a convenience store on Semoran Boulevard, Candelaria yelled at her to stop, told her to sit down, pointed his gun at her and asked where her brother was.
“He had no right to point his gun at a 15-year-old girl and order her to get down on the ground just because he wanted to know where her brother was,” Foster told the jury.
Candelaria eventually let Emilie go, and she walked toward nearby McCoy Elementary School. There, she saw Candelaria confront Payne, she said.
Payne, now 19, testified that Candelaria “blindsided” him as he sat on a bench at the school about 9 p.m., yelled at him, slammed him into a wall, punched him, handcuffed and searched him. Video corroborated most of Payne’s testimony, Foster said.
But defense attorney David Bigney said that nothing in the video suggested Candelaria committed a crime. In his closing argument, Bigney said Emilie’s testimony that Candelaria pointed his gun at her was not credible.
He also said Candelaria had a right to detain Payne because Payne admitted trespassing on school property. The state argued that sitting on a bench in a public area is not trespassing. Bigney further argued that other officers saw no signs that Payne had been punched.
Candelaria, who has been on desk duty while waiting for the criminal case to be resolved, said he hopes to return to patrol. Police Department procedure is to conduct an internal investigation first, Bigney said.