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East Cleveland

Read Ohio Criminal Rule 11 and the “pleas, rights upon plea” rights that come with every arrest to understand why Basheer Jones’ disappearing arrest records made Judge Dawson curious

CLEVELAND, OHIO – I have published Ohio Criminal Rule 11 in its entirety at the bottom of this story so readers will fully-understand the relevancy behind the question I asked East Cleveland Municipal Court Judge William Dawson about the status of Ward 7 Councilman Basheer Sudan Jones’ case.  Jones was arrested by two East Cleveland police officers on April 19, 2019.

Jones was charged with “improper handling of firearms in a motor vehicle.”  The offense was a 4th degree felony violation of Section 2923. 16 of the Ohio Revised Code.   The incident report East Cleveland’s cops generated doesn’t identify the reason for his “arrest without a warrant” or the basis for the search of the Cleveland politician’s vehicle.  Jones was a suspect of something and they found what had been claimed was an improperly handled gun during a search of his vehicle.

Unsworn private attorneys Willa Hemmons and Heather McCollough appear to be cooperating with an East Cleveland police scheme to obstruct Judge William Dawson from dismissing and deciding the outcome of arrests.

Dawson wrote to EJBNEWS that Jones was not brought before him as required of municipal law enforcement officers in Section 2935.05 of the Revised Code of Ohio.

“There is nothing in our court system which leads me to assume that it never resulted in a formal charge by the prosecutor’s office,” Dawson wrote.  “I am saying he was never arraigned before me for those charges.”

Section 2935.05 of the Revised Code of Ohio exists under the heading, “Filing affidavit where arrest without warrant.”  The statute makes reference to another statute within it, R.C. 2935.03, that describes every category of Ohio law enforcement officer authorized to arrest and / or pursue without a warrant.  R.C. 2935.05 gave the individuals discharging law enforcement officer duties pursuant to R.C. 737.11 very specific “mandatory” instructions to follow during every arrest.

Basheer Jones was arrested by East Cleveland “cops” John E. Hartman and Michael Woodside, and someone other than Judge William Dawson called themselves “dismissing” the case.

When a person named in section 2935.03 of the Revised Code has arrested a person without a warrant, he shall, without unnecessary delay, take the person arrested before a court or magistrate having jurisdiction of the offense, and shall file or cause to be filed an affidavit describing the offense for which the person was arrested. Such affidavit shall be filed either with the court or magistrate, or with the prosecuting attorney or other attorney charged by law with prosecution of crimes before such court or magistrate and if filed with such attorney he shall forthwith file with such court or magistrate a complaint, based on such affidavit.”

East Cleveland Councilwoman Juanita Gowdy has confirmed to EJBNEWS that police under twice-indicted felon and law enforcement officer impersonator Scott Gardner’s management “dismissed” the gun charges against Jones.   That’s the information she acquired from self-employed attorney Heather McCollough discharging the duties of a prosecuting attorney without an oath of office; and handling undisclosed private cases on the side.

Gowdy has promised to fire McCollough and attorney Willa Hemmons as East Cleveland’s next mayor.  She’s campaigning to replace Richmond Heights resident Brandon King.

Council Vice President Juanita Gowdy confirmed that Cleveland councilman Basheer Jones’ arrest was “dismissed” by the police and not at the request of the prosecutor to Judge William Dawson.  Judge Dawson expressed concern about the violation of R.C. 2035.05 to EJBNEWS.

Jones was charged, apparently only by the police and not the city’s prosecutor or judge, with “improper handling of firearms in a motor vehicle.”   The offense was a 4th degree felony violation of Section 2923. 16 of the Ohio Revised Code.

The incident report East Cleveland’s cops generated doesn’t identify the reason for the arrest or the basis for the search of the Cleveland politician’s vehicle.  Jones was a suspect of something and they found what cops claimed was the improperly handled gun he had a right to possess and transport.

The record of Jones’ April 19, 2019 arrest appears to have still been entered in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) criminal records history database Ohio police can access through the Law Enforcement Automated Data Systems (LEADS) portal.  That’s where Lake County Sheriff’s deputies found Jones arrest records when they denied his request for a concealed carry permit on December 26, 2019.

A warrantless arrest by a law enforcement officer or private citizen triggers 4th Amendment rights under the Constitution of the United States of America that are implemented into practice through Ohio Criminal Rule 11 and other criminal and civil rules of procedure.  The only way to adjudicate an arrest is in an open court before a judge, magistrate or jury.  Any dismissal Jones sought or was given should have been upon request of the prosecuting attorney – either McCollough or Hemmons – before Dawson.

State laws require judges to strip cops who are indicted for felonies and plead to misdemeanors of their OPOTA certifications. They’re done as a cop forever in Ohio. Scott Gardner’s been indicted and convicted twice for felonies in separate counties between 2013 and 2014; and he hasn’t stopped working. He’s even submitted fraudulent documents to OPOTA to so he doesn’t have to stop stealing from East Cleveland taxpayers and running the police department like an organized crime gang with Larry McDonald.

What’s pathetic is Jones is campaigning for mayor of Cleveland to hold office as the city’s chief law enforcement officer; and he’s accepting side deals to avoid the embarassment of an arrest instead of fighting for constitutional rights East Cleveland cops violated.  What’s clear is his constitutional rights were violated with the arrest and he was too cowardly to fight for them.

If he won’t fight for his own rights he won’t fight for anyone else’s if given management of the police department and city prosecutor’s office.  There’s no police reform legislation bearing his name as a councilman.

East Cleveland police under King’s twice-convicted police chief, Gardner, and the crew of non-Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy certified organized criminals impersonating law enforcement officers they manage, have been accused of making arrests go away in exchange for special favors.

They’ve had their child. Sergeant Dominique King is not pregnant at the time. But imagine filing a complaint against Larry McDonald with internal affairs and it goes to his baby mama.

Hemmons cut a side “cash for dismissal of charges” deal with the five Cleveland police supervisors charged with dereliction of duty in the Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams pursuit and slaughter inside East Cleveland.  Larry McDonald offered to get charges dismissed against a woman he wanted to date; and in exchange for dinner.

Kenneth DiSalvo changed his name to Kenneth Lundy after he resigned from the Hamilton County Sheriff’s department.  In the other county he told a jailed female American citizen he’d give her food in exchange for showing him her breasts.  He now works for King as a commander.

It’s been alleged that arrest records are disappearing for cash, car titles, drugs and sex.  A citizen complaining to East Cleveland’s internal affairs officer about McDonald gets “sergeant” Dominique King with whom he has a child.

The prosecutor’s office did not review or rule on McDonald’s shooting of Vincent Belmonte in the back of the head after he snatched off his bodycam. A “committee” of law enforcement officer impersonators cleared him of Belmonte’s shooting.  There are no controls over these law enforcement officer impersonating criminals.

Judge Dawson and the council must investigate what are clearly criminal acts surrounding warrantless arrests that individuals wearing law enforcement uniforms and carrying weapons are engaging in on East Cleveland streets.  Jones’ arrest coupled with Dawson’s questions about what happened to it offers the best evidence for an investigation’s launching point into what transpired between him and the police.

Who intervened on his behalf?  What was the favor or deal?

Read Criminal Rule 11 below.

Rule 11 – Pleas, Rights Upon Plea
(A) Pleas. A defendant may plead not guilty, not guilty by reason of insanity, guilty or, with the consent of the court, no contest. A plea of not guilty by reason of insanity shall be made in writing by either the defendant or the defendant’s attorney. All other pleas may be made orally. The pleas of not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity may be joined. If a defendant refuses to plead, the court shall enter a plea of not guilty on behalf of the defendant.
(B) Effect of guilty or no contest pleas. With reference to the offense or offenses to which the plea is entered:

(1) The plea of guilty is a complete admission of the defendant’s guilt.
(2) The plea of no contest is not an admission of defendant’s guilt, but is an admission of the truth of the facts alleged in the indictment, information, or complaint, and the plea or admission shall not be used against the defendant in any subsequent civil or criminal proceeding.
(3) When a plea of guilty or no contest is accepted pursuant to this rule, the court, except as provided in divisions (C)(3) and (4) of this rule, shall proceed with sentencing under Crim.R. 32.
(C) Pleas of guilty and no contest in felony cases.

(1) Where in a felony case the defendant is unrepresented by counsel the court shall not accept a plea of guilty or no contest unless the defendant, after being readvised that he or she has the right to be represented by retained counsel, or pursuant to Crim.R. 44 by appointed counsel, waives this right.
(2) In felony cases the court may refuse to accept a plea of guilty or a plea of no contest, and shall not accept a plea of guilty or no contest without first addressing the defendant personally and doing all of the following:

(a) Determining that the defendant is making the plea voluntarily, with understanding of the nature of the charges and of the maximum penalty involved, and if applicable, that the defendant is not eligible for probation or for the imposition of community control sanctions at the sentencing hearing.
(b) Informing the defendant of and determining that the defendant understands the effect of the plea of guilty or no contest, and that the court, upon acceptance of the plea, may proceed with judgment and sentence.
(c) Informing the defendant and determining that the defendant understands that by the plea the defendant is waiving the rights to jury trial, to confront witnesses against him or her, to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in the defendant’s favor, and to require the state to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at a trial at which the defendant cannot be compelled to testify against himself or herself.
(3) With respect to aggravated murder committed on and after January 1, 1974, the defendant shall plead separately to the charge and to each specification, if any. A plea of guilty or no contest to the charge waives the defendant’s right to a jury trial, and before accepting a plea of guilty or no contest the court shall so advise the defendant and determine that the defendant understands the consequences of the plea.

If the indictment contains no specification, and a plea of guilty or no contest to the charge is accepted, the court shall impose the sentence provided by law.

If the indictment contains one or more specifications, and a plea of guilty or no contest to the charge is accepted, the court may dismiss the specifications and impose sentence accordingly, in the interests of justice.

If the indictment contains one or more specifications that are not dismissed upon acceptance of a plea of guilty or no contest to the charge, or if pleas of guilty or no contest to both the charge and one or more specifications are accepted, a court composed of three judges shall:

(a) determine whether the offense was aggravated murder or a lesser offense; and (b) if the offense is determined to have been a lesser offense, impose sentence accordingly; or (c) if the offense is determined to have been aggravated murder, proceed as provided by law to determine the presence or absence of the specified aggravating circumstances and of mitigating circumstances, and impose sentence accordingly.
(4) With respect to all other cases the court need not take testimony upon a plea of guilty or no contest.
(D) Misdemeanor cases involving serious offenses. In misdemeanor cases involving serious offenses the court may refuse to accept a plea of guilty or no contest, and shall not accept such plea without first addressing the defendant personally and informing the defendant of the effect of the pleas of guilty, no contest, and not guilty and determining that the defendant is making the plea voluntarily. Where the defendant is unrepresented by counsel the court shall not accept a plea of guilty or no contest unless the defendant, after being readvised that he or she has the right to be represented by retained counsel, or pursuant to Crim.R. 44 by appointed counsel, waives this right.
(E) Misdemeanor cases involving petty offenses. In misdemeanor cases involving petty offenses the court may refuse to accept a plea of guilty or no contest, and shall not accept such pleas without first informing the defendant of the effect of the plea of guilty, no contest, and not guilty.

The counsel provisions of Crim.R. 44(B) and (C) apply to division (E) of this rule.

(F)Negotiated plea cases. When a negotiated plea of guilty or no contest to one or more offenses charged or to one or more other or lesser offenses is offered, the underlying agreement upon which the plea is based shall be stated on the record in open court. To the extent required by Article I, Section 10a of the Ohio Constitution or by the Revised Code, before accepting the plea, the trial court shall allow an alleged victim of the crime to raise any objection to the terms of the plea agreement.
(G) Refusal of court to accept plea. If the court refuses to accept a plea of guilty or no contest, the court shall enter a plea of not guilty on behalf of the defendant. In such cases neither plea shall be admissible in evidence nor be the subject of comment by the prosecuting attorney or court.
(H) Defense of insanity. The defense of not guilty by reason of insanity must be pleaded at the time of arraignment, except that the court for good cause shown shall permit such a plea to be entered at any time before trial.

Basheer Jones’ 2019 gun arrest appears to have been “fixed” by Brandon King’s administration as Judge William Dawson confirms Ward 7’s councilman was not arraigned in his court

CLEVELAND, OH – When East Cleveland police arrested Ward 7 councilman Basheer Jones on April 19, 2019 they sought to charge him with “improper handling of firearms in a motor vehicle.”  The offense was a 4th degree felony violation of Section 2923. 16 of the Ohio Revised Code.   The incident report East Cleveland’s cops generated doesn’t identify the reason for the arrest or the basis for the search of the Cleveland politician’s vehicle.  Jones was a suspect of something and they found the improperly handled gun.

Had Jones investigated the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy credentials of the cops who stopped him and searched his vehicle he would have learned they were law enforcement officer impersonators.  A further investigation would have revealed neither of the private attorneys discharging the duties of a prosecuting attorney were administered oaths of office; and had no legal authority to represent the city or “state” against him in any court.

Judge Willliam Dawson was obstructed by seedy East Cleveland officials from journalizing the official acts that occurred with Basheer Jones’ 2019 gun arrest by the city’s police.

Pursuant to Section 2938. 13 of the Ohio Revised Code Jones and every other criminal defendant has the right to ask Judge William Dawson not to advance any prosecution brought forth by admittedly private attorneys Willa Hemmons or Heather McCullough.  Each is discharging the duties of public offices they have usurped without oaths of office filed with the clerk of council pursuant to Section 705.28 of Ohio’s revised code.

Had he learned anything about the duties of a councilman while representing Cleveland’s Ward 7 Jones could have used what should have been a competent knowledge of laws to challenge his arrest and the charges against him. The statute that disqualifies Hemmons and McCullough as private attorneys operating in East Cleveland municipal court is clear.

In any case prosecuted for violation of a municipal ordinance the village solicitor or city director of law, and for a statute, he or the prosecuting attorney, shall present the case for the municipal corporation and the state respectively, but either may delegate the responsibility to some other attorney in a proper case, or, if the defendant be unrepresented by counsel may with leave of court, withdraw from the case. But the magistrate or judge shall not permit prosecution of any criminal case by private attorney employed or retained by a complaining witness.”

Within 48 hours after his probable cause-less arrest the Sixth Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America required King to ensure that qualified and oath sworn prosecutors to have police deliver Jones before East Cleveland Municipal Court Judge William Dawson for an arraignment and a bond hearing.  It is before an oath sworn Judge Dawson that oath sworn prosecutors could have expressed their disagreement with the requested charges against Jones and sought a dismissal to be entered into the record.  Dawson would have had the option of dismissing the charges against Jones with or without prejudice.  Jones would have had the right to ask that charges be brought against the police for the unlawful acts they committed against him.

Basheer Jones was denied a conceal carry permit by Lake County’s sheriff.

Between the police and the prosecutor’s office under Richmond Heights resident Mayor Brandon King’s control the case against Jones simply disappeared although not really.  The record of Jones’ April 19, 2019 arrest appears to have still been entered in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) criminal records history database Ohio police can access through the Law Enforcement Automated Data Systems (LEADS) portal.  That’s where Lake County Sheriff’s deputies found Jones arrest records when they denied his request for a concealed carry permit on December 26, 2019.

But Dawson wrote to EJBNEWS that Jones was not brought before him. He, too, looked into the arrest to learn what had happened.

“There is nothing in our court system which leads me to assume that it never resulted in a former charge by the prosecutors office,” Dawson wrote.  “I am saying he was never arraigned before me for those charges.”

EJBNEWS sought to learn if East Cleveland police had bypassed the city prosecutor and delivered Jones to Cuyahoga County prosecuting attorney Michael O’Malley for a direct indictment.  Like the East Cleveland municipal court the county court of common pleas has no record of Jones’ arrest turning into an arraignment with formal charges.  Between the two courts with the authority to have arraigned Jones his criminal records history is clean.

None of the police officers who signed Basheer Jones incident report were certified by OPOTA. Domonique King is the internal affairs officer and cop commander Larry McDonald’s “baby mama.”

Jones just relocated to Cleveland from Cleveland Heights in December 2020 and his April 2019 East Cleveland gun arrest was introduced to the public by EJBNEWS for inclusion in the discussion about his campaign for mayor of Cleveland and whether or not he’s competent enough to discharge the duties of a municipal chief law enforcement officer.  Why Jones was not arraigned has become a local political mystery.

The Cleveland politician’s Sixth Amendment or “speedy trial” rights and opportunity to face his accusers have long ago been violated by East Cleveland officials who obstructed the statutory and constitutional process for adjudicating criminal charges.  So on its face the arrest should be dismissed through East Cleveland’s municipal court records so the information on the FBI’s NCIC database can be updated to reflect that some adjudication occurred.

Without an order from Judge Dawson the April 19, 2019 arrest record remains associated with Jones’ name on the FBI’s NCIC criminal records history database and will continue to affect his rights as a citizen of the United States of America.  Had Judge Dawson journalized a dismissal of the case or accepted dropped charges from the prosecuting attorney Jones’ conceal carry permit wouldn’t have been denied in December 8 months after his arrest.

East Cleveland’s prosecutors and cops are notorious for cutting side deals with criminal defendants to keep cases from going to court. Without oaths of office on file with the Clerk of Council neither private attorneys Willa Hemmons nor Heather McCullough are authorized to discharge the duties of a municipal prosecutor pursuant to Section 705.28 of the Ohio Revised Code. Somehow between the police department and the prosecutor’s office charges against Basheer Jones never made it to arraignment.

What Jones would have been potentially left with was the misdemeanor offense of giving false information to the police and failing to update his drivers license.  Jones and his family have not ever resided at 1383 E. 94th Street which is the address police recorded from his drivers license.

As a 2017 candidate for Cleveland city council Jones and his family lived at 1670 Belvoir Road in South Euclid.  From South Euclid the Jones’ relocated to 3936 Orchard Avenue in Cleveland Heights while he continued to serve unlawfully on Cleveland city council and claiming 1383 E. 94th Street as his residential address.  Jones purchased a home on E. 66th Street in Cleveland last March 2020.  His family was relocated from Cleveland Heights to their Cleveland home in December 2020 after it was renovated.

Now a convicted felon, Gary Norton joins the Cleveland Hall of Fame of dirty ex-politicians endorsed by the Plain Dealer

CLEVELAND, OH – The Plain Dealer and cleveland.com’s editorial board has done a horrible job of endorsing candidates for elected office.  When the newspaper’s endorsed candidates commit crimes in office or demonstrate incompetence its publishers, editors and writers just act like it didn’t happen.  Ignore their ongoing offenses until law enforcement authorities step in.

Gary Alexander Norton, Jr. is the latest Plain Dealer endorsed political candidate to be convicted of crimes he didn’t get caught committing until he was out of elected office.  Norton showed up at East Cleveland city hall after voters recalled him in 2016 and offered to demolish up to 10 homes for free.  After leaving city hall he became an UBER driver.  What council didn’t know about Norton’s overly-generous offer was that it wasn’t true.

The ex-mayor ended up with a demolition contract he was given by ex-police chief secretary Vanessa Veals after she signed community development director Melran Leach’s name to it.  Both subsequently received a visit from and ended up being arrested by FBI agents after being told to keep their mouths shut about the visits.  Instead of keeping their mouths shut Norton discussed it with Veal and she discussed it with another employee.

Veal tried to destroy Norton’s email not knowing the data is stored permanently on her email service’s servers.  When the woman Norton was alleged to have been caught with in an uncompromising position Forest Hill Park was confronted by FBI agents about their conversations they each lied.

Norton and Veals’ decisions to run their mouths resulted in federal agents aborting the investigation and holding them accountable for the obstruction.  Both were indicted for lying to FBI agents on November 21, 2019.  Norton entered a guilty plea in December 2020.  He was sentenced to one year’s probation for the felony on May 13, 2021.

Gary Norton joined Uber after being removed as mayor by East Cleveland voters in 2016.

According to Norton’s Thompson, Hines & Flory lawyer, John Mitchell, East Cleveland’s disgraced and recalled ex-mayor can never serve in elected office again.  He can’t vote and he’s already been globally discredited with all the negative print, broadcast and online references to his crimes in office.  His attorney said the public won’t even hear from him as Mitchell pleaded for extreme leniency to help his allegedly contrite client.  Norton selected the same law firm that represents Forest City Enterprises.  Mitchell wrote the following about his client.

“Gary is a 49-year old, non-violent, first-time felon that no person could possibly claim to be a threat to society. The citizens of the United States, and Cleveland, Ohio, in particular, will not be “less safe” if Gary receives a humane sentence. This is particularly true because of the facts of this case, because the circumstances leading to Gary’s conviction will never reoccur. He is not under any investigation. He will never hold public office again. In short, by virtue of this conviction and his voluntary choice to leave the political arena, this Court should recognize that this will be the only time it ever sees Gary Norton.”

Mitchell’s “help a brutha out” pleading identified the wrong city as the one Norton harmed by referencing Cleveland instead of East Cleveland as being “less safe” from his presence on the streets.  In other sections of the document Mitchell submitted to U.S. District Court Judge Dan Polster, he appears to ignore crimes that Norton and his wife committed while holding public offices and employment.

Ohio State Patrol officers visited Gary Norton’s former East Cleveland home on Newbury Road after he began working for Rick Case.

Shalom Norton was a Cleveland school principal when she stole over $10,000 from the treasury of the principals association and delivered a portion of it as gifts to Gary and their children.  The Norton’s three daughters now have two parents with criminal records.  Shalom Lawrence-Norton and Gary are now divorced.

For each of the six years he served East Cleveland as mayor, local and state records on file with the office of Ohio’s Auditor of State show him annually engaging in dereliction of duty and obstructing the city’s official business by recklessly exceeding the budget council approved.  It took him 33 months to return the city to fiscal emergency after racking up a debt of nearly $11 million.  Norton’s misspending caused serious harm to the city’s residents when he was unable to deliver an EMS vehicle that would transport them to hospitals during life-threatening emergencies.

Even now the residents of East Cleveland still struggle with the aftermath of the illegal construction and demolition debris landfill he and the city council Brandon King and Thomas Wheeler presided over allowed George Michael Riley to build.  Riley is currently in trial and Norton’s name has figured prominently in how he and Christine Beynon acquired the former site General Electric used to manufacture lights at 1740 Noble Road.  Instead of ensuring that Riley and Beynond readied the property for redevelopment as the ordinance council enacted required.  Norton cut a side deal with Riley and delivered him title to the property without council approval.

According to a woman named Nikki, who claimed that she and Norton shared a child, the former mayor gave her $700 a week in cash she claimed he was receiving from Riley.  Norton’s legal salary as mayor was $40,000 annually.

Norton and Delos Cosgrove further conspired to close Huron Hospital in violation of an ordinance Dr. Joy Jordan led council to enact that instructed the mayor not to even have a meeting with Cleveland Clinic about the closure.  Norton had zero legal authority to sign the contract the two “teams” of lawyers created.

This information was also concealed from East Cleveland residents and greater Cleveland by the Plain Dealer and cleveland.com since the hospital’s board included their publisher.  Terrence CZ Egger.  In that deal  Cosgrove delivered $8 million to an account Norton had set up without council’s knowledge or authority to receive it.   Council’s under Ohio law receive and appropriate all of a municipal corporation’s funds.  The agreement signed by this devil-ish duo claimed it was being binding whether council agreed or not. Not so under any Ohio law.

Gary Norton, Jr. aided George Michael Riley and Christine Beynon in violating federal environmental laws when he delivered the property General Electric owned and manufactured lighting for them to use as a construction and demolition debris landfill in a residential neighborhood near three schools.  Cleveland and East Cleveland firefighters were forced to repeatedly visit the illegal dumpsite to out out fires that spewed deadly tars, gases and acid rain in the air.  Nearby residents complained of health problems that included cancer.  Barbara Garner died of lung cancer and her son believes the dump Norton let Riley place in her backyard was the cause of her early demise.  Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish was forced to spend $10 million with the support of the county council to clean up the mess Norton’s lawlessness created.

Norton told Plain Dealer reporter Chris Feran he would spend the money to eliminate the debt he’d created by exceeding the budget council approved.  This was in 2011.  Norton returned East Cleveland to fiscal emergency 33 months after taking office after exceeding budgets approved by council by more than $11 million.  Residents of the city never saw a dime of the money spent on improving the city.  Feran didn’t return with a Plain Dealer or cleveland.con story that Norton had lied.

The sentencing memorandum Mitchell submitted to Polster acknowledges that as far as his future, Norton’s name is now trash. He’s lucky, according to Mitchell, to be employed as a used car salesman for Rick Case at 49 years of age.  He didn’t even want Norton fined.

“Regardless of this Court’s sentence, Gary has already been and continues to be punished for his offense. As the result of this investigation and his conviction, Gary has gone from being a highly respected member of this community and his neighborhood to a convicted felon. He will now be unable to exercise certain civil rights, such as the right to vote. Moreover, this case has garnered significant negative publicity for Gary in news articles published in print and online that will forever tar him as a felon. For those who do not know him, he will now be best known for this conviction rather than his successes in life.”

In private conversations with people with both know, Norton has shared that his life was ruined by this writer.  In all the acts described above this writer was nowhere within Norton’s inner-circle as an advisor.  The one piece of advice he got from me “officially” came in the form of my decision to veto a self-dealing ordinance he’d asked council to approve in 2009 during a “special meeting” I’d called as mayor.

His ordinance was not on the agenda and Norton knew it wouldn’t pass with a new council.  What he wanted was to add $45,000 to $65,000 to the salary of the director of public safety and assume the title and the wages.  I vetoed it as a violation of the state’s open meetings laws.  Norton and the idiots on council at the time overturned it.

Norton was warned that if he started off stealing he wouldn’t stop.  I repeatedly warned him, editorially, to consider his family.  Today his wife’s left him and their three daughters have a “mommy and daddy” with criminal histories as thieves and felons they’re stuck with having to explain to all their friends.  I’ve always said people will fuck up the perfectly good children God gives them to lead.  No bad children.  Just bad parents.

Advance employee Terrence Egger works for the Russian-owned Plain Dealer and Cleveland.com under Advance Communications, served on Cleveland Clinic’s board; and editorially concealed Gary Norton’s acts of misconduct in office from the newspaper’s readers.  Egger controlled all of the newspaper’s editors and reporters.  If he didn’t want a story in the publication it wasn’t printed.  If he wanted to smear someone they got smeared.  Journalistic integrity is bullshit.  I reported for the Cleveland Press and worked under its Russian owner, Joseph Cole, and its Russian Editor, Herb Kaminsky aka Kamm.  It was the last year the Cleveland Press existed in 1981 and 1982 before I joined Curtis Sliwa’s Guardian Angels and organized chapters in Cleveland, Youngstown and Columbus.   There were roughly 110 writers and four of us were American Negroes employed at the Cleveland Press.  Check my clips.    The Cleveland Press closed in 1982 and the closing was investigated by the United States Department of Justice.  Cole and his development partner, John Ferchill, then built the headquarters for Jones Day – Vladmir Putin’s law firm – on top of the Cleveland Press building’s foundation.  Most of you don’t know Egger put $15,000 of his personal money into Bill Mason’s campaign to “reform” county government in 2009 and 2010.  Consider the conflict of the Plain Dealer’s publisher helping Mason pay to collect the signatures to put the issue on the ballot because that’s the form of government he saw in Saint Louis County.  He’s from St. Louis.  I’m from East Saint Louis.  I have a different spin on his upbringing than you folk here.  He seeks to editorially destroy American Negroes.  St.  Louis.  Cleveland.  He’s now in Philadelphia.  I feel sorry for Bill Cosby. 

They were so young when voters chose Norton over me on September 29, 2009, six days after the day he disseminated pictures stolen from my personal computer to the city’s electorate the same day my father died, they don’t even remember me.  Mitchell claimed in Norton’s sentencing memorandum that his client now feels the pressure of the media that has deterred him forever from wanting to hold another elected office again.

What Mitchell shared that I know as a journalist and newspaper publisher in this town since 1978 is that honest public attention can put the fear of God in an elected or appointed public official who knows accountability comes after their misdeeds in office are publicly-exposed and proven.  Plain Dealer reporters “promoted” Norton instead of covering him.  So did the other media.  Reporters ignored that council had legitimate issues with their endorsed candidate’s failure to abide by his oath of office.

Had the Plain Dealer’s publisher, Egger, not possessed an economic and personal interest in closing Huron Hospital as a board member, the news man in him should have stepped down with a warning to his Cleveland Clinic colleagues that he was going public with Cosgrove’s illegal deal with Norton.  Dr. Joy Jordan, Chantelle Lewis (Supreme Court Justice Bill O’Neill’s Lt. Governor running mate), Nathaniel Martin, Barbara Thomas and Mansell Baker had enacted legislation instructing Norton not to meet with Cleveland Clinic officials about closing Huron Hospital.  So the contract Cosgrove and Norton signed was a sham and Egger knew it.

The Plain Dealer’s Ellen Kleinerman covered the story about Gary Norton and Delos Cosgrove illegal deal to close Huron Hospital and did not mention one word about its illegality.

Had Plain Dealer and cleveland.com writers reported the truth instead of concealing vital facts from East Cleveland residents and higher authorities an intervention could have prevented the single-most significant act that led to the city’s financial demise.  1100 workers.  300 of them – at least – residing in the surrounding apartments a walking distance from work.  $1.3 million in annual income tax revenue.  East Cleveland’s #1 employers.  An asset left from the legacy of John D. Rockefeller whose destruction appears to have been intentional.  In no paragraph or sentence of her June 2011 story about the deal Cosgrove and Norton entered to close Huron Hospital did cleveland.com writer Ellen Kleinerman report that East Cleveland city council enacted legislation instructing the mayor he had no authority to discuss the hospital’s closing or to sign any contracts.

Because of Huron Hospital’s emergency room, the average East Cleveland or nearby Cleveland Heights resident had a four minute drive to health care.  The same for nearby Cleveland residents at East Cleveland’s borders.   The physicians Dr. Gus Kious assembled at Huron Hospital’s emergency room had become life-saving specialists who were increasing the survival and improval rate of gunshot victims.  In East Cleveland was the state’s #1 gunshot wound trauma center.  The homicide rate is higher because gunshot wound victims are bleeding out while waiting for treatment.  Physicians must be placed on EMS squads.  On the scene trauma specialists will drive down the homicide rate.

Dr. Kious and I were discussing using section 749.01 of the Revised Code of Ohio to create a municipal hospital board that would provide free healthcare to the city’s residents and workers.  It’s the 67 year old state law that lets city councils tax property owners $1 per $1000 to fund a free municipal hospital like Cleveland had until 1957.

A combined $8 million was invested to renovate Huron Hospital less than four years before Gary Norton and Delos Cosgrove cut a deal without council approval to close and demolish it for $20 million.

Huron Hospital also had a nursing school that taught skills as a licensed practical nurse and as a nursing assistant.  I invested federal block grant training money in teaching the women who wanted to be nurses assistants how to be licensed practical nurses.  More money for them and their families.

In the sentencing memorandum, Mitchell, Norton’s attorney, glossed over his 12 years in office between council and mayor.  That experience to Mitchell appears to have been the equivalent to a hypen on a headstone at a gravesight identifying the buried person’s dates of birth and death.  Yeah.  They had a life but let’s not talk about it.

Polster should have heard from the residents of East Cleveland as the parties harmed by Norton’s actions.  They voted him out of office because of his incompetence and stealing in 2016 since the county prosecutor and state auditor refused to act.  And after intentionally removing him from office Norton kept on stealing from East Cleveland voters through the network of corrupt workers and contractors loyal to him instead of the oaths of office he’d failed in his duties as mayor to administer to them.  That’s how the FBI got him.

That’s not the story Polster heard and it’s the travesty in his sentence.  Lying to the FBI wasn’t Norton’s first crime.  It wasn’t the only crime he committed that got him arrested and before the federal judge.  It was simply the one crime in a long list of crimes he committed while in and out of public office that someone finally said “enough.”

Pharrell’s gun-licensed, security company owning cousin was killed by a Virginia Beach cop whose bodycam the police chief says was turned off

CLEVELAND, OH – Virginia Beach city council and the city’s National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) chapter are seeking answers for why a police officer with his bodycam turned off shot singer Pharrell Williams’ cousin through marriage to death on March 26, 2021.  Virginia Beach city council scheduled a special meeting for March 30, 2021 to discuss the drama that dragged their city into the national “police killing” spotlight.

Two people were killed at Virginia Beach’s Oceanfront on March 26, 2021.  Eight were injured.

The dead are Donovan Lynch and reality star Deshayla E. Harris, 29, of Norfolk.  She appeared on the “Bad Girls Club” and went by the pseudonym “Firecracker Fashionista” on the Oxygen network show.  Lynch is Pharrell’s cousin through marriage.  The popular recording artist is from Virginia Beach.

Lynch was shot to death by an unnamed Virginia Beach police officer.  Harris was shot to death by a stray bullet.  Lynch’s shooting is drawing controversy because police mischaracterized his presence at the crime scene to justify the shooting.

According to the Virginia Beach police department he was “brandishing” a handgun in a “threatening” manner.  According to a witness police are lying.  Lynch’s weapon was not in his hand.  It’s the same conceal-minded thinking Scott Gardner exhibited when he told the media words Larry McDonald did not use when he turned off his bodycam and shot Vincent Belmonte in the back of the head in East Cleveland, Ohio.

Lynch’s father, Wayne Lynch, told Virginia Beach’s WAVY NEWS that his son owned a security company and he was licensed and permitted to carry his 9mm Rutger concealed.  No evidence has been presented that Donovan Lynch was involved in the shootings that injured 8 bystanders and killed Deshayla Harris.  Police have not even said his weapon was discharged.

What’s interesting to this writer from a Cleveland perspective is in seeing the Virginia Beach NAACP calling for a “civilian review board” similar to one that’s existed in Cleveland since the 1980’s that doesn’t give citizens the desired “police accountability” results.  Like in Ohio the Virginia Beach chief of police, Paul Neudigate, has deflected the deadly force investigation to Virginia’s “state police.”  Below are NAACP President Karen Hills-Pruden’s thoughts on the police shooting.

The Virginia Beach NAACP Branch was pleased to hear during today’s City Council Special Session that the investigation into the shooting death of Mr. Donovan Lynch will be handled by the Virginia State Police. This branch was not pleased with the previous statement by Chief Neudigate stating that a gun was found in the vicinity of the incident. His failure to also state that Mr. Lynch was a legally licensed gun owner was an attempt to shift the perception of the public’s view toward Mr. Lynch. The police department has access to gun permit/licensure information, so the Virginia Beach Branch NAACP has no reason to believe the intent was other than malicious. This is one of the reasons an external agency was requested by the branch.

Furthermore, Chief Neudigate complaints of understaffing, equipment preferences, and equipment on back order is nothing new. The police force has been understaffed for years. However, the Virginia Beach Branch NAACP will not allow our focus to be watered down by those organizational objectives.

Our inquiry is two-fold . Why was Mr. Donovan Lynch shot on March 26, 2021? And why did the police officer who shot Mr. Donovan Lynch not activate his Body-Worn Camera?

Virginia’s “general assembly” is called a “house of delegates.”  Its “state senators” and “state representatives” are called “delegates.” Delegate Jay Jones of Norfolk called for a Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring to conduct an independent investigation into the shooting.  Herring agreed with his opponent in the June 2021 primary election primary election and ordered one.

DeShayla Harris, 29, was an innocent Oceanfront bystander when she was shot to death on March 26, 2021.

Below is Jones’ statement.  He wants in part an end to qualified and sovereign immunity for law enforcement officers.

“The Virginia Beach community deserves answers to the horrendous shootings that occurred this weekend. Body cameras are designed for transparency into police conduct – specifically situations like what happened over the weekend – to provide a clear record of interactions with the public it serves in the field.

“It is unconscionable that the body camera worn by a police officer involved in a fatal shooting was not activated, and I am calling on the Attorney General to use his full investigative authority to determine what went wrong here. We need far better accountability and transparency, and the families of those killed by police, in Virginia Beach and across this country, deserve answers.

“Despite the shooting taking place on Friday, the officer has yet to be interviewed by the Virginia Beach Police Department. This is further evidence for why we must reform our law enforcement practices, including ending qualified and sovereign immunity, but also demand more transparency and hold law enforcement to appropriate standards.

“No one is above the law, including those tasked with enforcing it. Although the Civil Rights Division I proposed this past session would have had investigative and enforcement authority over a situation just like this, it was killed for politically motivated reasons by supporters of Mark Herring in the legislature.

“Nevertheless, I trust that the Attorney General will investigate this matter and use the office to make police reform a much larger priority than it has been for him during his time in office. I pray that he won’t play politics with justice and the lives of our citizens. Now is the time to put the full weight of the office behind your new rhetoric.”

Despite the direction the politicians are taking the discussion about his son’s death in, Wayne Lynch wants answers and justice.  He wants his son’s named cleared of the smear Virginia Beach cops attempted.

Singer Pharrell Williams shared his thoughts on Instagram about his cousin being shot to death by a Virginia Beach cop on March 26, 2021.

The FBI warned Ohio’s governor, mayors and sheriffs in 2006 that white supremacists were infiltrating law enforcement agencies

CLEVELAND, OH – In November 2006 I reviewed an FBI bulletin released October 17, 2006 which sought to alert elected officials that white supremacists were infiltrating law enforcement offices.  At the time I was serving my 10th month as East Cleveland’s mayor and director of public safety.  The late Patricia Lane was the civil service chief of police I had inherited.   The late Almeta Johnson, Cleveland’s first female chief prosecuting attorney, served as my director of law and chief prosecutor.

The original version of the FBI’s bulletin was heavily-redacted as it portrayed how white supremacist law enforcement officers had access to “intelligence gathering” tools such as its National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database or Ohio’s Law Enforcement Automated Data Systems (LEADS) to acquire information about their “elected official” targets or people who were “protected” as sources.

The Congress of the United States of America’s Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties last September 2020 released the unredacted version of the 2006 FBI Bulletin during a hearing.  U.S. Rep. Ayonna Pressley in the video I’ve shared above is shown accepting testimony from witnesses about the continued problem with white supremacists who have now become embedded within law enforcement since the FBI Bulletin’s release 15 years ago.  The concept of law enforcement officers who were white supremacists working as police, dispatchers, jailers, prosecutors, probation officers, baliffs and judges was alarming when I read the redacted FBI Bulletin in 2006.

I had worked as a reporter for the Call & Post newspaper and had read stories in its “morgue” that covered jail hangings occurring in Cleveland and the surrounding suburbs with all Caucasian criminal justice workers.  The FBI’s warning gave them a new perspective.

So have the warrantless pursuits that are commonly mislabled “high speed police chases.”  So did prosecutors going through great lengths to avoid cops being charged for crimes; or police chiefs and safety directors calling crimes and civil rights abuses violations of “administrative offenses.”

The infiltration effort was organized, according to the FBI’s 2006 bulletin.  The infiltrators were described as “ghost skins” who could “avoid displays of their beliefs to blend into society and covertly advance white supremacist causes.”

The October 17, 2006 FBI bulletin used the example of an internet posting that promoted the infiltration as a form of “role playing.”

“You must get inside the mind of the person you are trying to duplicate,” the FBI bulletin explained.

It further went on to explain how white supremacists could infiltrate law enforcement and have access to tools and access to prosecutors, other federal and state law enforcement officers to learn of investigations that were targeting white supremacists or skinheads. The states identified in the report where white supremacists were infiltrating police departments were Ohio, Illinois and Texas.

After I terminated Lane and appointed Ralph Spotts to replace her as police chief, I chose to get involved in the interviewing process for new police hires.  After recommendations were made by Spotts the applicants met with me.

I asked Caucasian applicants from small police departments in cities with no or few American Negro residents why they sought employment in a city with a 96 percent American Negro population.  I got answers from some that they wanted the “action” or “experience” which from my perspective was a disqualifier.  It was not my intent to hire inexperienced action junkies from any ethnic group to patrol a city where I had relatives and friends; and voters who had elected me to discharge the duties of a “chief law enforcement officer.”

I knew Section 737.11 of Ohio’s Revised Code required law enforcement officers to “obey and enforce” all the criminal laws of the United States and the State of Ohio.  I knew upholding the Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of Ohio was language included in the oaths of office I would administer to new hires.

After administering the oaths of office I asked each newly-appointed law enforcement officer if they’d read the two constitutions and all the federal and state criminal laws they had duties to uphold and obey.  They hadn’t.

They were informed that at some point in the future they’d see the oath of office they’d signed during a disciplinary hearing.  At that time they’d be reading criminal charges that were going to be filed against them for violating the constitutions and laws they hadn’t read but had promised to uphold and obey.

They were also reminded that the oath of office did not include obeying the collective bargaing agreement that my administration negotiated with the Fraternal Order of Police and that I knew better than them.  I wrote my own responses to their grievances.  Civil Service laws trumps collective bargaining agreements.

Clevelanders will remember that on July 21, 1999, former Mayor Michael R. White held a news conference to share how racist graffiti that included Nazi swatiskas was found written on the walls inside the police districts.  Anthony Ruffin held the office of president of the Black Shield.  Martin Flask served as White’s chief of police.  Henry Guzman held the office of director of public safety.  Bob Beck held the office of president of the Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association.  Mike asked me to join his administration a year later as a special assistant.  Barry Withers was Mike’s “EA” or executive assistant over public safety.

Ted Almay served as the late then Republican Governor George Voinovich’s superintendent of the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation. He explained how the number 311 referenced the Ku Klux Klan.  The “3” represented the three K’s in Ku Klux Klan.  “K” is the 11th letter in the alphabet.  Mike’s claim was no bullshit.

Before the former Cleveland mayor held his news conference he should have dispatched a team of photographers to each district to photograph the racist filth written all over bathroom stalls and in other areas of the public buildings.  I had worked as a police reporter for the Cleveland Press in 1981 and knew he was right from what I’d seen written on the bathroom walls in the Justice Center.  It was the same when I published the Crime Reporter in 1988 and visited the Justice Center daily to look up police reports.  The first cell phones with cameras in America were released in November 2002.  You couldn’t hide a 35mm.

After Mayor White’s news conference the walls in the districts and downtown at the Justice Center were scrubbed and the proof of his claim erased.  Beck could then run his mouth with reporters and claim he’d never seen it.  The CPPA’s vice president, John Kincaid, made a predictable denial that there were not any racists or white supremacists working as Cleveland police officers.

White asked United States Attorney Emily Margaret Sweeney to investigate.  He also asked Cleveland State University associate professor Ronnie Dunn to investigate.

Dunn examined 186,000 citations and learned that 85 percent were written to “dark skinned” American Negro males.  The remaining 15 percent went in the following order to dark-skinned American Negro females; dark skinned Hispanic males; dark skinned Hispanic females; light-skinned American Negro males; light-skinned American Negroes; light-skinned Hispanic males; light-skinned Hispanic females and then Caucasian males and females.

Dunn confirmed a similar set of facts with citations issued by Shaker Heights police.  The evidence proved racial bias was embedded within police thinking.

Former Cleveland Mayor Michael Reed White saw and acted on the white supremacist consciousness he saw emerging in the Cleveland police department in 1999; but his request for an investigation appears to have been misdirected by the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.

Instead of investigating the racism United States Attorney Sweeney investigated police use of deadly force.  She did so as a civil instead of criminal investigation.  Sweeney may come from a “law enforcement family” and have a pro-police or “protect my relatives” bias.

White had been replaced by Jane Campbell as Cleveland’s mayor in 2002 when the deadly force report was released; and in 2003 when the violation of constitutional rights in the city’s jail was released.  White retired in 2001 after 12 years in office.

Subodh Chandra served as Campbell’s director of law but he had worked for Sweeney in the United States attorney’s on health care fraud.  Former Russian Jewish Assistant United States Attorney Steve Dettelbach’s wife, Karil Bialotosky-Dettelbach, a Mexican immigrant, worked for both the Campbell and Jackson administrations at the time Justice Department officials were investigating their inability to manage police within constitutional and lawful boundaries.

Chandra, an Asian Indian, asked the USDOJ to end the use of deadly force investigation of his boss, Campbell, early. Former Mayor White’s 1999 request for an investigation of white supremacy in the Cleveland Division of Police was thwarted by what could be perceived as white supremacist sympathizers controlling the office of the United States Attorney and FBI in the Northern District of Ohio.

I can recall no case where federal prosecutors operating out of the United States Attorneys Office for the Northern District of Ohio have used Section 241 and 242 of Title 18 of the United States Code as Congress intended when it upgraded the two federal laws from misdemeanors to felonies during passage of the Violent Crime and Law Enforcement Control Act of 1994.

Dettelbach proved a conspiracy existed to violate rights under the color of law with his investigation of 600 police incident reports that identified the “conspiracies” Cleveland police engaged in to conceal their crimes.  There are penalties of up to 10 years in prison or the death penalty for 18 U.S.C. 241 and 242 violations he chose not to use to give justice to the families of Timothy Russell, Malissa Williams, Tamir Rice and other police crime victims.

Something other than laws are motivating prosecutors not to criminally charge cops for known crimes. Something other than the federal and state criminal laws municipal law enforcement officers have duties to obey before they attempt to enforce them is guiding their warrantless pursuits and violent interactions with American citizens.

Juanita Gowdy’s running for East Cleveland mayor because voters are disgusted with Richmond Heights resident Brandon King’s lying and stealing

CLEVELAND, OH – Council Vice President and East Cleveland Sunrise publisher Juanita Gowdy is counting on the truth that the voters of East Cleveland know more than a few things about Mayor Brandon King that disgusts them as she challenges him for the “chief law enforcement officer”s job he holds illegally as a Richmond Heights resident.  Elected officials under Ohio laws must be residents of the community they’re elected to serve.

For the past nearly two years, Gowdy and East Cleveland Sunrise co-publisher Justyn Anderson have been distributing their 5000 circulation newspaper to every household, door-to-door, providing information-starved voters and residents with details about the “dirty dealings” taking place inside the King administration.  Gowdy and Anderson told EJBNEWS they got the idea to spread regular doses of the truth from the East Cleveland Challenger and the East Cleveland Tattler. 

Brandon King created a proclamation in August claiming he had the authority to suspend the U.S. Constitution, federal laws, Ohio’s constitution, state laws, East Cleveland’s charter and ordinances. He must have been snorting some good shit when he signed it. Crazed and communist-inspired thinking like this is the reason East Cleveland voters should remove this two bit dictator from Richmond Heights out of city hall.

King and his friends were and are robbing the city blind while making up lies to deceive residents who thought they could trust him, Gowdy said.  “We had to do something when his administration started losing $50 million lawsuits we know voters will never be able to pay.”

Gowdy said residents now know King doesn’t live in the city and lied about his residency when he ran for council and then mayor. King doesn’t live at 1735 Elsinore Road in a rowhouse apartment his brother resides in that’s been raided twice for drugs.

1735 Elsinore is where several King brothers fraudulently claim to live in Sheldon King’s apartment so they can vote in the city in violation of election laws, according to Cecil King.  Sheldon King is the brother convicted for drug dealing and child endangering from inside the apartment the mayor’s voting address claims adult King men with families share.  The mayor and his brothers must not have been at the apartment and left Sheldon to take the hit for the King organized crime family during the raids.

Residents of Elsinore Road know Richmond Heights resident Brandon King does not at 1735 with his adult brother; and neither do the other adult King men voting illegally from Sheldon King’s address.

Gowdy said residents now know King is a hot-tempered thief who’s employees like Michael Smedley and Melran Leach,  along with ex-mayor Gary Norton, are either being criminally-investigated or named in federal indictments for crimes in public office.  Numerous residents know King received a subpoena from the Ohio Ethics Commission for records associated with his selling office supplies to city hall as part of an ongoing criminal investigation.

Gowdy said King’s chief of police, Scott Gardner, was twice-convicted for felonies he pleaded down to misdemeanors that makes him ineligible to be certified as a law enforcement officer, according to section 737.02(2)(a) of the Revised Code of Ohio.  Gardner was indicted back to back by two prosecutors between Cuyahoga and Medina county in 2013 and 2014.

Gowdy said King would have made himself look like a hero to East Cleveland residents had he fired him after Norton failed to do so.  The heading for the law is “Felony conviction precludes or terminates employment.”

(2)(a) The director of public safety shall terminate the employment of a chief of police, member of the police department, or auxiliary police officer who does either of the following:  (i) Pleads guilty to a felony;  (ii) Pleads guilty to a misdemeanor pursuant to a negotiated plea agreement as provided in division (D) of section 2929.43 of the Revised Code in which the chief of police, member of the police department, or auxiliary police officer agrees to surrender the certificate awarded to the chief of police, member of the police department, or auxiliary police officer under section 109.77 of the Revised Code.

Gowdy told EJBNEWS that had King fired Gardner like a state general law requires, so many residents the police the unfit “chief” stations and transfers have been pursuing and shooting to death might still be alive or uninjured.  The members of the city’s Civil Service Commission resigned in February after not operating lawfully since 2016.  None of the police hired or promoted have been appointed through Civil Service testing.   That list includes Larry McDonald who removed his bodycam before shooting Vincent Belmonte in the back of the head.

Back shooting Larry “Pacman” McDonald was laid-off by this writer as East Cleveland’s mayor and twice-convicted Scott Gardner was twice-suspended by me as I was building a case to fire him in 2009. Cuyahoga County prosecuting attorney Michael O’Malley indicted him on felony tax charges and so did Medina county’s back-to-back between 2013 and 2014. After pleading to two misdemeanor Gardner should never have been allowed to remain a police officer by Gary Norton or Brandon King under Ohio law.  McDonald shot Vincent Belmonte in the back of the head after he removed his bodycam.

The state Civil Service Commission is investigating the Civil Service law violations and King has been warned to take the investigation seriously.  Gowdy said Gardner will have no future with East Cleveland as his two convictions mean the private security company owner should have long ago been fired.

Gowdy said once elected she’s going to follow the model the Brewer administration implemented by making public employee accountability and an obedience to federal, state and local laws a mandate.  Without all the police pursuits, violence towards citizens and police killings, Gowdy said East Cleveland residents remember how crime in every category was reduced by 40 to 70 percent between January 1, 2006 through December 31, 2009.

During an interview, Gowdy told EJBNEWS how she disagrees with demolishing homes that could be renovated with the same money.  Instead of demolishing 125 homes like King is planning as a way to direct more no-bid contracts to his friends, she wants them renovated and sold at cost.

“If it costs $25,000 to renovate a home in our landbank we can sell it for $25,000 and reinvest the money into another property and resell it at cost … too,” Gowdy said.   “The “D” in “HUD” is “Development” and not “Demolition.” She wants resident homeowners to have access to HUD dollars to help with their repairs.

Gowdy said she disagreed very strongly with former Mayor Gary Norton’s decision to aid Cleveland Clinic’s plan to close Huron Hospital in 2011; and to be paid $8 million in exchange for losing the income taxes that came from its 1100 workers.  300 of the hospital’s workers were residents and the closing emptied the apartment buildings surrounding the hospital for workers who could walk next door or across the street to work.

Council has not authorized funding for a job called “chief of staff” that Michael Smedley claims to hold. He’ll be fired an investigated by a new mayor and administration. He might also face criminal prosecution for the crimes he’s committed in office. Smedley was named in Kenneth Tyson’s indictment.

Gowdy blasted Norton for taking the $8 million and spending it as he pleased.  Norton didn’t spend a dime of the money for new service vehicles to plow or repave and clean the city’s streets and parks; or for new fire safety equipment.  Norton spent nothing for tree trimming equipment in a city full of trees.

Gowdy wants council and the residents once she’s mayor to support a small property tax to build a free fully-equipped emergency room for residents who would pay only $1 a year for every $1000 in property value.  $25 a year on a $25,000 home.

With the $25 million the city is getting from the federal government, Gowdy wants the current council and a new one to use a portion of the money to build the emergency room and the small tax would fund it.  The emergency room would be free to residents with no health care.  Whatever Medicare, Medicaid or a person’s  health care coverage paid would cover the additional costs.  Residents would have no “out of pocket” costs.  Non-residents would be required to pay.

“We have to consider putting physicians instead of untrained EMS workers on our ambulances.  We have residents being shot and beaten; or involved in car crashes that causes serious injuries,” Gowdy said. “The nearest emergency room is University Hospitals and more of our people are dying after Huron Hospital and its gunshot wound trauma center closed.  Free emergency room care would add an extremely affordable value to being an East Cleveland resident and increase the desire for people to live in our city.”

Not a single public safety worker administered first aid to Vincent Belmonte when Larry McDonald shot him in the back of the head. They only checked his pulse as his breathing and heartbeat slowed to a standstill. Juanita Gowdy believes physicians can be afforded to ride EMS squads instead of poorly-trained EMS workers.

Gowdy also wants a portion of the money to be spent on upgrading all the equipment in the city’s service department that Norton did not upgrade with the $8 million in Huron Hospital closing dollars he wasted.  She wants the baseball diamonds improved in the parks as well as the tennis courts.

“Our residents lived a much better suburban lifestyle with greater health amenities before criminals took over our government,” she said.

During her first year on city council, after winning in 2019, Gowdy has been investigating problems with King’s management of the municipal workforce as well as his contracting and compliances problems.  She’s found that King has not been administering oaths of office to employees and delivering the oaths to the council clerk.

This has been a problem issue, particularly, for the city’s law department King lets private attorney Willa Hemmons leads.  Neither attorney has obtained the approval of or reported to council before they initiated or responded to litigation as required by Ohio laws.  Hemmons is a resident of Beachwood who has no legal authority to discharge the law director’s duties as a private contract attorney.  Gowdy said the ate Almeta Johnson was the last person qualified under Ohio law to serve as the director of law.

Brandon King and Mansell Baker voted with Thomas Wheeler to let George Michael Riley stockpile over 1000 Cuyahoga County landbank homes behind houses lived in by Harry Drummond and the late Barbara Garner in 2014. This deadly construction and demolition debris should have been taken to a dump in Minerva outside Canton because they contained asbestos. The place caught on fire often and spewed deadly, immune weaking toxins in the air. Ms. Garner, a non-smoker, died of lung cancer with this filth in her backyard thanks to Richmond Heights resident Brandon King when he served, illegally, on East Cleveland city council as its vice president.

Gowdy said Hemmons and Heather McCullough can expect to be fired.  So can Michael Smedley.  Police officers without certifications and still discharging a law enforcement officers duties can expect to be held fully-accountable within laws.

“We don’t need a high speed pursuit policy and the police chief doesn’t get to write a police department’s rules or regulations under Ohio law,” Gowdy said.  “We already have a state law that instructs them when they can and cannot pursue or cross the borders of another city.  The Ohio Revised Code gives the Director of Public Safety rule writing authority for city police.  Rules written by the police chief is evidence of a police chief exceeding the authority of their public employment.”

Gowdy said Ohio’s general assembly has written a warrantless pursuit “general law” and she just got council to approve an ordinance that requires the director of law, prosecuting attorney and judge to use R.C. 2935.03 in evaluating every pursuit.  Ord. No. 525.03 is named the Tamia Chappman Act.”

The local law Gowdy sponsored makes it a requirement for the law department to ensure every police officer bringing charges against a citizen is authorized by law to do so by delivering the oath and training records to every person they arrest.  If they pursue outside the law the pursuing “law enforcement officer impersonators” will be responsible for their own legal representation and damages.

Richmond Heights resident Brandon King has been repeatedly warned by state officials to close East Cleveland’s filthy jail. Council vice president wants it either closed or money used to repair it … immediately.

They must possess an oath of office that’s filed in the clerk of council’s office pursuant to R.C. 705.28; in addition to maintaining current and approved Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy credentials as required of R.C. 109.81.

They’ve also got to operate the equipment in police cars in obedience with federal and state criminal laws; and not violate R.C. 2913.04 or the FBI’s NCIC 2000 Manual to access the Mobile Display Units.  All this information is required to be delivered to citizens in criminal proceedings to ensure the city isn’t later sued for a civil rights violation. Gowdy is opposed to police using automatic license plate readers that council has not authorized them to buy or use through an ordinance or resolution.

“The taxpayers of East Cleveland are not going to pay for their unlawful behavior and violations of civil rights,” Gowdy said.

The twice-convicted Gardner exceeded the authority of the police chief when he wrote an opinion to council claiming the ordinance was unconstitutional; and that he wasn’t going to enforce it.  Gowdy said the ordinance authorizes residents to file criminal complaints against the law enforcement officer who violates it; and requires Judge William Dawson and the prosecutor to enforce it.   She said Gardner has no legal opinion-writing authority and intends to deal with his duty-exceeding criminal misconduct once elected as the city’s chief law enforcement officer.

Council Vice President Juanita Gowdy sponsored and introduced Ord. No. 525.03 to deal with the warrantless pursuits that took the lives of Tamia Chapmann, Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams. As mayor Gowdy has promised to deliver the message to the county’s mayors that there police officers will be arrested if they enter East Cleveland’s borders in violation of R.C. 2935.03.

“I’m not worried about Scott Gardner,” the East Cleveland Sunrise publisher told EJBNEWS.  “East Cleveland’s policing will be reformed.  The slave-catching mindset of the city’s police officers will not be tolerated in 2022.”

East Cleveland’s charter is partisan.  Since no Republicans or third party candidates have competed in the last three elections the Democrat who wins the primary heads, alone, to the November general election.  Voters will have once chance during the primary to elect the candidate of their choice.

[DISCLOSURE:  This writer is the former Mayor of East Cleveland, Ohio and I have been aiding Council Vice President Juanita Gowdy and co-East Cleveland Sunrise publisher Justyn Anderson for the past three years in understanding the complexities of municipal management from a statutory perspective.]

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