HOW “WELL” HAS CARROLL LEE ROSS DONE?
by Sharon Rondeau
(Oct. 5, 2013) — The Post & Email received a letter from George Raudenbush, who has been incarcerated for the last two years in state penitentiaries for alleged driving violations following a one-day, 15-hour trial in Madisonville, TN.
After his arrest, he was incarcerated in the Monroe County jail with Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III for several months. Fitzpatrick has been exposing grand jury and judicial corruption in eastern Tennessee for the last four years.
Raudenbush had denied all of the charges levied against him, which included driving without a seat belt and insurance, speeding, and evading arrest. He is a Christian missionary who was active in the Appalachian Youth Missions (AYM) programs and Tennessee Christian Citizens Against Corruption (TCCC) as a leader before his incarceration.
Raudenbush had been denied an attorney for the trial and was convicted and sentenced to seven years in state prison. The presiding judge at Raudenbush’s trial was Carroll Lee Ross, who has since announced that he will retire next August.
In late 2010, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department had confiscated a trailer belonging to the AYM after claiming that it believed Raudenbush to be its owner. A criminal complaint had been filed with the FBI by another AYM group leader, Gary Church, against the Sheriff’s Department after the seizure of the trailer. Raudenbush had told The Post & Email that he believed his arrest on false charges was in retaliation for the group’s having reported the trailer confiscation to the FBI.
Both Raudenbush and Fitzpatrick have demonstrated that Monroe County, TN judges, prosecutors, and attorneys do not follow the law and routinely deprive citizens of their legal and constitutional rights. Ross had ordered Fitzpatrick arrested on April 1, 2010 after he attempted a citizen’s arrest of the illegally-serving grand jury foreman, who had been installed 28 years prior without an appointing order or any evidence that he had been sworn in. Tennessee statute requires that grand jury members be chosen randomly by “automated means,” but the judges routinely participate in the process, as Fitzpatrick observed first-hand in December 2011 with Judge Amy Reedy, who handpicked the jurors for the coming year.
On August 24, 2011, Ross had instructed sheriff’s deputies to remove Fitzpatrick from the courtroom just before Raudenbush’s trial was to begin for allegedly possessing a recording device, but Fitzpatrick had left his recorder in his vehicle and had only a fountain pen and paper when he took his seat in the courtroom. However, a local reporter friendly to the Monroe County regime was allowed to remain for the trial.
Raudenbush had been rearrested on a charge of having a recording device when he had only a Mont Blanc pen given to him as a gift.
A citizen activist exposing the corruption in Monroe County, particularly as it went to Raudenbush, told The Post & Email that he or she was threatened online as a result.
Corruption within the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department, the court system and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) has also been clearly observed and reported. The Knoxville office of the FBI has failed to take action on the endemic public corruption in Monroe and other counties in Eastern Tennessee.
Last week, an assistant prosecutor, Paul D. Rush, who prosecuted a case against Fitzpatrick currently on appeal was declared guilty of ethics violations by the Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility (BOPR). Rush has accused The Post & Email as lacking “ethics” and “integrity” after it posted redacted grand jury applications online, demonstrating that an unusual amount of personal information is collected by the Monroe County courthouse before summoning potential new jurors for the coming term.
Rush did not, however, contact The Post & Email directly to refute any of its reporting of Monroe County and Tennessee’s Tenth Judicial District corruption, nor has any other Monroe County official. Calls placed to their offices by The Post & Email are not answered or not returned.
In his letter to The Post & Email dated September 29, 2013, Raudenbush tied Ross’s impending retirement with the decision of Attorney General Robert Cooper, Jr., stating, “Since the Tennessee Attorney General has concluded that the judgment of the trial court against me should be reversed based upon constitutional violation by the trial court judge Judge Carroll Ross, Judge Carroll Ross has since announced his preemptive resignation from the bench. My case is now before the Knoxville Court of Appeals for consideration of release and complete exoneration.”
Raudenbush added, “My release should be very soon. God’s perfect timing! There have been many oppertunitys [sic] over the past two years to share my faith with many men who have been imprisoned for decades. I praise God for this privilege.
“I have also had the oppertunity [sic] to meet men falsely imprisoned due to public corruption. Its [sic] really very sad…”
When Ross announced his retirement, he told the community, “I hope I have done well.”