"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.

“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).

“This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost.

It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.” In Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429 (1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.

“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.

Friday, August 25, 2017

The rising "shining star" of Delaware County government - Acting Sheriff Craig DuMond and his record of integrity and competence

I have posted today an article about the retiring Delaware County (NY) Sheriff Thomas Mills and his mysterious sudden retirement before expiration of his elected term - and about the possible reasons for such a "retirement" which surely looks like a resignation to a reasonable observer.

At the end of that article, I posted a flurry of well-wishes to the retiring Sheriff Mills and to his replacement, the previous Undersheriff, and the future Acting Sheriff Craig DuMond.

The well-wishers praised Mills and DuMond for their integrity, competence, and claimed that Delaware County was and is going to be in very good hands.

Of course, regular lawsuits against Delaware County police and social services for egregious violations of people's constitutional rights come non-stop, and the recent several lawsuits:
  • two involving the nephew of the District Attorney's investigator Derek Bowie,
  • one about starving a  pre-trial detainee as punishment, and
  • one about fabricating a felony child sex abuse case against a Hispanic legal immigrant, a deportable offense,
and the fact that the county has been "suffering" sudden "retirements" and "resignations" of many elected and appointed officials for the last 3 years during the audit by New York State Comptroller, investigation of the New York State Commission for Judicial Conduct and the supposedly ongoing FBI investigation of the county - brings a different perspective to this flurry of "retirements".

As to the replacement of Thomas Mills, Craig DuMond has interesting history of, let's say, integrity that shines him not as an upstanding public official, but as a self-serving corrupted thug who just got a better access at the public funds that he considers his to have.

Just two years ago, I reported that DuMond, without public bidding, "trained" the Sheriff's Department "horseback police force", while stabling the Department's horses in his own private stables.

Interestingly, but not surprisingly, The Walton Reporter that initially reported that, deleted the link to that particular article.

Other sources at the time, reported this "graduation" of Delaware County police officers, DuMond included, from a week-long "certification course" - without mentioning that the horses are stabled at DuMond's own horse farm.

Nor was the "certification" of "horseback police patrol" announced in any official news releases on the Delaware County Sheriff's website - and do we really need to wonder, why?

Once again, JUST AFTER the New York State Comptroller finished the audit pointing out to the County the inappropriateness of dishing out contracts without public bidding, Undersheriff Craig DuMond dished out a contract to stable horses for "horseback patrol" - to himself and his wife.  Without public bidding.

Obviously counting on the fact that nobody will give a damn as to what he is doing as long as he pleases enough people in power to cover up for him.

Then, just recently, DuMond came up with a great statement for the Walton Reporter claiming that Delaware County Sheriff's Department had always rented its police officers to patrol the Delaware County Fair, while admitting that the fair grounds are private property (rented by the Fair Council for the duration of the fair each year).

Imagine that you, as a private individual, hire Delaware County police officers to guard your business for a little extra pay.

What if you then commit a crime - wouldn't it be a little awkward for Delaware County Sheriff's deputies, who were paid by you for their services for you as security officers, to investigate and prosecute you?

That same conflict of interest exists in Delaware County Sheriff's Department renting their officers for ground patrol of Delaware County Fair, during County time, for an extra fee.

And, you know what else was interesting at the Delaware County Fair this year?

As reported to me by people who visited it - the total lack of horseback police.

Not one of them.

While DuMond announced that horseback police (with horses stabled at his private property, obviously at the County expense, without a public bidding contract) is necessary for "crowd control" - specifically at the Delaware County Fair.

For those of my readers who do not know the specifics of Delaware County, New York, it is a very rural, very wooded, very large county with very sparse population, where there are more deer and bears than people, and where the claim of a need for "crowd control" is simply ridiculous.

The only two times that anything approximating the definition of a "crowd" happens in Delaware County is:

1) Fair on the Square in the County seat, Delhi, NY, which happens every Friday for 4 Fridays, starting with the 4th of July; and

2) the Delaware County Fair.

Yet, horseback police do not appear at either of these events, so, very likely it was just an excuse to hire a friend and pay him for a "certification" course, as well as to have the police some free riding lessons at public expense and to pocket the money for upkeep of horses.

After all, when everybody who counts loves you and thinks you are a shining star of integrity, like the Delaware County Clerk Debra Goodrich (who is supposed to be neutral since she is the clerk of the County, criminal, court, and the Sheriff's personnel testify in that court as witnesses)

who can prevent you from living the life of a corrupt thug that you are used to?

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