06/16/13 Clarence Walker

Clarence Walker reports re a judge planting drugs on a woman who chose not to be his mistress, Russ Bellville of 420 Radio, Doug McVay with Drug War Facts

Program: 
Cultural Baggage Radio Show
Date: 
Sunday, June 16, 2013
Guest: 
Clarence Walker
Organization: 
Alternet
Share

Comments

Transcript

Cultural Baggage / June 16, 2013

-----------------------

[music]

DEAN BECKER: Broadcasting on the Drug Truth Network, this is Cultural Baggage.

“It’s not only inhumane, it is really fundamentally Un-American.”

“No more! Drug War!” “No more! Drug War!”
“No more! Drug War!” “No more! Drug War!”

DEAN BECKER: My Name is Dean Becker. I don’t condone or encourage the use of any drugs, legal or illegal. I report the unvarnished truth about the pharmaceutical, banking, prison and judicial nightmare that feeds on Eternal Drug War.

-----------------------

DEAN BECKER: Welcome to this edition of Cultural Baggage. We’ve got a great show lined up. We’re going to feature a former Houstonian, Clarence Walker, who now reports for Alternet. We’re going to hear from Mr. Russ Belleville who now reports on a daily basis the horrors of this drug war and we’re going to hear from Mr. Doug McVay with Drug War Facts.

-----------------------

DEAN BECKER: I recently saw a story on Alternet about a horrible but typical enough situation involving the drug war. Here to tell us more about it is investigative reporter Clarence Walker.

CLARENCE WALKER: I am an investigative journalist. I also work in the private investigative industry. I am also a writer and story producer. That’s what I do. I research crime stories all across America including overseas.

DEAN BECKER: You had a recent story appear in Alternet which talks about a situation where cops were planting drugs on a woman. Let’s talk about that story, please.

CLARENCE WALKER: Actually the story was published first at http://drugwarchronicle.org and Alternet picked it up. It began last year in April 2012 when the complainant, Angela Garmley, went to Judge Bryant Cochran’s court down in Chatsworth, Georgia to file a complaint against 3 people who had assaulted her.

What happened is when she went to his office and spoke with him he apparently seemed more concerned about how attractive she was and what was going on in her life. At the time she was estranged from her husband and going through a divorce.

She indicated that he told her that he wanted her to be his mistress. He wanted her to have sex with him once or twice per week because he wasn’t getting no satisfaction at home from his wife. She said that she was appalled at what he was saying but at the same time she was intimidated by this judge because down in Murray County, Georgia (which includes Chatsworth, Georgia, Dalton, Georgia) it’s a small town and judges and police officers and the sheriff department they wield a lot of power.

She went along with his program and he gave her his cell phone number for her to call him. He told her to come back in the next few days which would have been a Wednesday and to check in at his office and to wear no underwear so they could have sex before he went on the bench.

She said she had no intention of doing this but went along with the program because she wanted to make sure that she got justice in his court involving the people who beat her up. When she showed up for court she did not check in at his office and have sex with him. What she did is she went to court, the perpetrator showed up (the one who had assaulted her) and the judge gave those people bail on personal recognizance and he released them right there on the spot.

He was pretty upset that she did not do as he told her to do. She contacted her attorney and told him what he had done. This attorney had Miss Garmley (the victim in this case) to contact the Judicial Qualification (it’s similar to the Texas Bar) but called the Judicial Qualification down in Georgia that governs the behavior of judges and lawyers on the bench.

An investigation was open. Down in Georgia the case was covered extensively about this judge propositioning the victim in this case for sex and that if she gave him sex then she would get a favorable ruling and everything would turn out alright in her assault case. By this time with so much heat on the judge she had another experience.

That experience was she was coming home from a friend’s house. A deputy sheriff pulls her over and he claimed he pulled them over because the driver failed to dim the headlights. Another person was driving the car. A friend of hers was driving the car. Miss Garmley, the victim, was in the passenger’s seat.

The deputy has been identified as Josh Greeson Josh Greeson was employed as a sheriff deputy by the Murray County Sheriff Department. He asked her if she had been drinking or was she high and she said, no.

He asked her if she had any drugs in the car and she said no. He said, “Do you mind if I let my canine dog search your car?” She said no.

He had the dog search the car and the dog got a hit on the drugs that was found in the wheel of the car. In other words, the methamphetamine was in a little tin-like box that had a magnet to it and it was stuck inside the wheel of the car.

So the dog finds the drugs and he puts her and the driver under arrest. Her husband could see what was going on because it happened on his property (her estranged husband). He came to the scene to see what was going on and gets into an altercation with the deputy and the deputy also arrested him.

By this time Captain Michael Henderson arrived on the scene. Captain Henderson was off-duty and arrived on the scene and tells the driver of the car who was a friend to the complainant in this case – he told him, “You happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.”

Bear in mind that Captain Henderson is first cousin to the judge who had these drugs planted in Angela Garmley’s car. Angela Garmley’s husband was arrested. She was arrested and the driver of the car was arrested who was a friend to the Garmleys.

They appear in court and a lawyer, McCraken Poston, shows up at the court and she …Actually, Angela told the deputies at the scene that she had been setup but when she got in to court she also told her lawyer that she had been set up. The lawyer smelled something bad here and he told the jurors that this young lady had accused a chief magistrate judge of sexual harassment and they had been on TV for the last couple weeks or so over what he had done and that they was calling in GBI which is the Georgia Bureau Investigation.

Angela Garmley tells her lawyer that a guy named CJ had come to her house at 1:30 in the morning asking her about a guitar. “Did she…was her father still living there?” He wanted to trade a guitar with Angela’s father who no longer lived there.

CJ worked as a handyman for the judge and out of the clear blue just shows up at Angela’s home, OK? Subsequently when the GBI started back tracking and started investigating they talked to this CJ guy. CJ confessed and said that the judge had told him to put the methamphetamine inside the wheel of Angela’s car.

He said the judge told him that he would get even more money if he would get Angela’s cell phone. The reason the judge wanted the cell phone was there were text messages from the judge on the phone and there were text messages from Angela back to the judge about this rendezvous that the judge wanted her to have with Angela – the sex thing.

The GBI asked the deputy, Josh Greeson, “Did you have any prior information about that? Did anybody tell you to stop that car before you stopped it?”

He said no. As it turned out he lied. Once the GBI got his cell records it showed he had gotten calls from Captain Michael Henderson which is the first cousin to the judge. They put a little more pressure on the deputy who made the stop and he finally confessed and said, “OK, Captain Michael Henderson had told me earlier…Well, a couple days before to be on the lookout for this particular red and white Dodge-type car.”

And gave him the license plate of the car to be on the lookout as the car was carrying drugs. He said he also got a call from the judge asking him as well – Judge Bryant Cochran – to be on the lookout for the car.

The question was, “When you put in your police report that you stopped the car because the car failed to dim its lights was that a lie?”

He said it was a lie. The whole thing was a lie. He said after the investigation started (this is what Deputy Greeson said) Greeson said after the investigation started Captain Michael Henderson came by and said, “If you don’t tell anybody about the car – that you was on the lookout for the car – nobody will know.”

So he said he was intimidated by the captain because down there in Murray County you do as you’re told. GBI continued to investigate and at the request of the GBI investigator they requested to the judge that they drop the methamphetamine charges against Angela Garmley and the driver of the car and to drop charges against her husband.

Now her husband was only charged with interfering with a police investigation at the time. The only two people charged with the methamphetamine was the driver and Angela Garmley but at the request of the GBI (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) the charges was dropped.

The Federal Grand Jury down in Long County, Georgia indicted Captain Michael Henderson and Deputy Josh Greeson on federal civil rights violations.

DEAN BECKER: And what has happened to the judge?

CLARENCE WALKER: At this point the case is still under investigation. They haven’t indicted him yet – not yet – but the case is still under investigation. So far Captain Henderson who was fired from the sheriff department pled guilty and Deputy Josh Greeson also has been fired and he pled guilty as well.

As part of the plea agreement they agreed to tell everything they know about the instruction they were given as to why they should stop Angela’s car.

DEAN BECKER: Once again we’ve been speaking with Mr. Clarence Walker, an investigative reporter. Clarence, this is a story that is still unfolding then, right?

CLARENCE WALKER: Yes it is. It is still unfolding. I’ve worked many, many cases involving drugs. As you know you always hear people say the cops planted drugs on me but how often do you hear of an officer actually pleading guilty to being part of a conspiracy where someone had drugs planted on them. You don’t read where officers actually plead guilty to those charges.

It’s kind of rare. It happens but it’s kind of rare. You don’t hear about it every day.

DEAN BECKER: Yeah, you have to have somebody willing to speak the truth like that CJ fellow, right?

CLARENCE WALKER: Yeah, CJ …GBI (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) put a lot of heat on him because he went to the complainant’s house one day before the bust went down. He showed up at her home at 1:30 in the morning saying that he wanted to trade a guitar with her father. Her father no longer lived at the house.

She said that she was curious as to why he would do something like that.

I forgot to mention that he acted nervous and told him that he was dealing with some people that he was afraid of. He asks Angela to let him out the window of her house and she let him out the window instead of the front door and he went somewhere.

What had happened is that he had planted the drugs in the wheel of her car. He confessed to the GBI. He confessed the whole story.

DEAN BECKER: Clarence, I appreciate the depth of this investigation. Is there a website where folks tune into your other work?

CLARENCE WALKER: http://drugwarchronicle.org or http://alternet.org

-----------------------

(Game show music)

DEAN BECKER: It’s time to play: Name That Drug by Its Side Effects.

Changes in sex drive, pounding heartbeat, shortness of breath, chest pain, difficult speech, dizziness, seizures, believing things that aren’t true, feeling suspicious of others, hallucinating, mania and hostile behavior….

(gong)

Time’s up!

The answer from Shire-Richwood Incorporated: Adderall.

-----------------------

DEAN BECKER: We’re at the Dallas/Fort Worth NORML convention. I’m here with a man who’s nationally known for his work in trying to undo the horrors of this drug war especially in regards to marijuana, Mr. Russ Belleville.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: Hi Dean. It’ great to be back in Texas.

DEAN BECKER: For those few who don’t know what you do tell them what you do on a weekly basis.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: I’m the Executive Director of 420 Radio which is a 24-hour cannabis community online radio station and I host the Russ Belleville show which is a 2-hour weekday news/talk/interview show about the marijuana law reform movement.

I started off in 2005 getting involved with my local NORML chapter in Portland, Oregon with Alan Martinez and those folks and it just ballooned from there from meeting Madeline I got to meet Keith and Allen from NORML, got to do podcast work for them then got hired on as their outreach coordinator.

As I developed more of this community radio, community network it became kind of a bigger thing than NORML. I want to work with LEAP and SSDP and all the groups – all the acronyms. I got to thinking that it really didn’t make sense for all of them to have their own production facility – why don’t I do that and give my talents to all these groups. That’s kind of what’s going on now.

DEAN BECKER: I always hear the echoes of last fall’s vote. It has made such a huge impact by what Colorado and Washington State did, what they created – truthfully, the first legal marijuana distribution in the world. It’s not only impacted the United States – it’s impacted the world.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: Absolutely. The problem we had previous to 2012 in trying to get legalization passed was the same problem as asking people to legalize leprechauns – they don’t exist, it doesn’t exist – so you’re asking people to legalize or to take a big, bold step into something that is completely abstract to them.

Now it’s no longer abstract. Now it’s Washington and Colorado and we can see what will work and what won’t work and we can tailor from there. Now there is a discussion. We’re not laughed out of the legislative hearing rooms anymore. Now they’re calling the reform organizations and asking our opinions. It’s just amazing.

DEAN BECKER: There’s always those naysayers of doom and gloom who say you can’t legalize marijuana – the world will end and our children will die. You spoke in your speech about the fact that California and many other states have legalized medical marijuana and those projections of doom and gloom have just not appeared.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: Absolutely. I always like to make the distinction that there’s California and then there’s medical marijuana. There is a bunch of states that have medical marijuana with some degrees of difference but, generally, they have condition lists and registries and they’re fairly well regulated.

California, on the other hand, has for “any illness a doctor feels cannabis will help.” Which I love. I think it’s a beautiful way they wrote that but it does make California quite different than the other medical states. I almost call California as quasi-legalization. It’s legalization with a doctor’s note – however you want to phrase it.

One of the advantage you have with California is it is kind of a quasi-legalized state and has been for a decade or longer and we haven’t seen California fall into the ocean. Trains still run…do they have trains in California? The cars still run on time, people still go to work, kids still go to school – all of the doom and gloom predictions by our opponents for what would happen when California passed medical haven’t come to fruition. We haven’t seen youth rates go up any more than they’ve gone up and down with the rest of the country. It hasn’t been a big spike in those states. In fact we’ve seen less drunk driving deaths. We’ve seen some reduction in teen use in these medical states.

I think that bodes well for what we’re seeing with legalization. The proof’s in the pudding. We’ll see what happens with Colorado and Washington in these next couple years but I’m very hopeful that we will continue to see more good statistics coming out of legalization that further blows away all their doom and gloom predictions.

DEAN BECKER: I’ve heard it said that over 100 million Americans have smoked pot at some time in their life. It did not lead to a list of car wrecks or accidents or abuse or any of these things that are portended by our opponents. It’s just a bucket that doesn’t hold any water.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: Right. Even now one of the talking points that used to have great sway was the old gateway theory – the gateway drug. Now people don’t buy that anymore. The polls are showing they don’t think that’s a realistic way of looking at cannabis and the way that it works.

You mentioned that number of how many people have tried it. You get 103 million people of voting age who have tried it – 108 million if you count teenagers under voting age – and, yet there are only 3 million hard drug addicts (heroin, coke, meth, all that) so not much of a gateway when 108 try it and only 3 end up going on to something worse.\

In fact most people who smoke pot don’t even go on to smoke more pot. They usually smoke some in their college years and then stop when they have kids or get married or whatever. These old school scare tactics of gateway theory, you’ll grow man boobs, you’ll be amotivated – Michael Phelps blows that one out of the water (pardon my pun) with the whole amotivational syndrome.

They don’t have much left but “What about the children?!” and stoned mayhem on the freeway and even those are starting to fade.

DEAN BECKER: A couple years back I think Santonio Holmes was Most Valuable Player of the Super Bowl and I think the week after he was caught with marijuana. Once again kind of paralleling Michael Phelps. It’s been that way many times.

The gentleman in the picture with the San Francisco – Tim Lincecum – same story. And yet somehow these prohibitionists cling to the idea that it’s amotivational.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: Yeah. You mentioned Santonio Holmes which, in fact, 2 Super Bowls in a row the winning touchdown pass was caught by a wide receiver that had marijuana in his past. Santonio Holmes one year and Plaxico Burress the next year.

They’ve had other things in their life that don’t make them great role models so I don’t want to go too far on those two. With respect to sports the worldwide anti-doping agency just raised its limit from 15 nanograms of metabolites in urine to 150 because they were tired of catching people who had smoked pot.

DEAN BECKER: You and I might could pass that one.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: [laughing] I don’t think I’m ever going to pass that. A lot of the sanctioning bodies – the martial arts community now (UFC and these martial arts bodies) are starting to raise their limits as to …they want to make sure that the boxer or fighter isn’t coming in high but they don’t care if he smoked a joint a week ago or two weeks ago.

On the other side the NCAA that handles football and college sports lowered their standard from 15 to 5. So you got the United States moving a much more punitive direction on the drug testing while the rest of the athletic community in the world is moving in the opposite direction. It just shows how much our propaganda (ONDCP) strong arms the rest of the world with this policy.

DEAN BECKER: Russ, I think you and I, our life’s ambition is to educate, motivate others to just do something, God damn it. Get off your ass, right?

Give folks a pep talk and point them to your website.

RUSS BELLEVILLE: I always say the first three letter in activism are act, a-c-t, and you gotta do something about this. You have to stand up for your rights. Part of how you do that is getting yourself educated to know what your rights are and know how to properly fight for them.

You can tune in to http://420radio.org. We’re on 24 hours a day. There is always something educational going on on 420 Radio. We play Dean’s shows (Cultural Baggage and Century of Lies). Every hour we have headline news – a little 6 minute news segment. We’ve got grow shows. We’ve got lawyer shows. We’ve got mom shows.
The idea is to be the 24 hour network for this movement. It is so important for us to all have a place where we can gather together to learn from each other, to exchange ideas and provide a broadcasting platform. That’s what we’re trying to do here.

He’s doing this on the terrestrial side – you’re on all sorts of terrestrial stations. I’m doing it on the internet side and that’s what we’re going to do. So please join us. Get yourself educated to get it regulated, legislated and we will win this fight.

-----------------------

DOUG McVAY: HireRight, a company which specializes in doing background checks on prospective employees for various companies, has just released the results of its 2013 Employment Screening Benchmarking Report. According to their report, 78 percent of their respondents have some sort of drug testing program. They say, quote:

"Most organizations are screening job candidates at this time (90%), while 71% screen current employees. The value of screening current employees to discern drug or alcohol use in the workplace is demonstrated by test initiations both pre- and post-hire. 88% of respondents initiate tests prior to the first day of work, while 61% do so upon reasonable suspicion, and 59% do so when investigating an accident.

"Types of tests can vary from urine (95%) and breath alcohol (42%) to saliva (11%) and other common tests. Most tests (91%) are conducted in a collection lab, but almost a quarter of respondents (24%) indicated some form of on-site testing.

"Marijuana remains a newsworthy topic, with several states approving the medical use of marijuana and, as of November 2012, voters in two states approving its recreational use. Federal law, however, still prohibits all types of use. Few respondents (12%) indicated that they have a medical marijuana policy, with another 10% planning to implement one. These numbers varied slightly from 2012 (14% and 8%, respectively). Among those respondents who have a medical marijuana policy, not all are necessarily taking adverse action against those who test positive: 63% do so with job candidates, 56% do so with current employees.

End quote. HireRight mentions the level of testing in the Transportation industry, yet in their report they fail to mention levels of drug testing in other industries. They also mention medical marijuana yet fail to report on the number of respondents and firms which are located in legal medical marijuana states. There are a few other concerns with their numbers that should be noted:

The HireRight survey is based on information gathered from 1,600 respondents. That sounds like a lot but it's really a terribly small number based on the universe of US businesses. According to the Census Bureau, in 2008 there were 5,930,132 employer firms in the US, employing a total of 120,903,551 people.

The Census Bureau notes that there are 18,469 firms in the US which have 500 or more employees a total of 61,209,560 employees are at firms that size, more than half the employee total. According to the graph on page 6 of HireRight's benchmarking report, 66% of their respondents work for firms with fewer than 500 employees.

So their numbers are based on a limited sample. Beyond that, HireRight is known for having a serious problem with accuracy. In fact, the FTC in 2012 reported that HireRight was hit with a massive penalty for mis-reporting on job applicants. According to the FTC, quote:

"When it comes to Fair Credit Reporting Act compliance, the FTC says HireRight Solutions got it wrong by not using reasonable procedures to ensure the accuracy of the information it was selling. The upshot: a $2.6 million civil penalty, the second-largest ever in an FTC FCRA case."

End quote. In their business, that means that countless careers, livelihoods, families, lives were disrupted and possibly ruined. So while this marketing piece from HireRight may contain some facts, we can be forgiven for taking it with a grain of salt.

For the Drug Truth Network, this is Doug McVay with Common Sense for Drug Policy and Drug War Facts.

This has been a production of the Drug Truth Network – online at http://drugtruth.net
-----------------------

DEAN BECKER: I want to thank these three reporters for their contributions to this Cultural Baggage show: Doug McVay does a weekly segment for Drug War Facts, Mr. Russ Belleville and his efforts out there on the web and Mr. Clarence Walker who reports for Alternet and the Drug War Chronicles.

In closing I remind you, once again, that because of prohibition you don’t know what is in that bag. Please be careful.

-----------------------

DEAN BECKER: To the Drug Truth Network listeners around the world, this is Dean Becker for Cultural Baggage and the Unvarnished Truth.

Drug Truth Network archives are stored at the James A. Baker, III Institute for Policy Studies.

Tap dancing… on the edge… of an abyss.

Transcript provided by: Jo-D Harrison of www.DrugSense.org