Fitzpatrick Disqualifies Three-Member Grand Jury Panel, Requests New Hearing

INVOKES “CONSTITUTIONALLY ASSEMBLED” GRAND JURY

by Sharon Rondeau

(Jul. 21, 2017) — On Thursday, The Post & Email reported that McMinn County, TN resident Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III on Tuesday took a sizable packet of documentation to the county “Justice Center” with the intention of addressing the grand jury about local public corruption which has affected not only him, but all Tennesseans, directly or indirectly.

In his complaint, Fitzpatrick accused McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy and two McMinn County grand jury foremen, one current and one former, of criminal activity and demanded their respective presentments and arrests.

In states which utilize the grand jury system, only that body can issue criminal presentments after a review of the evidence as set forth in the Fifth Amendment.

In a “General Statement of Offenses” included in the packet, Fitzpatrick wrote:

On a number of previous occasions beginning in August 2012 through March 2014, Fitzpatrick had requested a hearing before the grand jury on the same issue but was denied access by then-grand jury foreman Jeffrey L. Cunningham.

In late 2011, Cunningham was personally selected to serve as foreman by then-Criminal Court Judge Amy Armstrong Reedy, reportedly by an evening telephone call placed by Reedy to Cunningham.

In December 2011, Fitzpatrick reported having observed Reedy hand-picking in open court all of the grand jury members for the new term to commence the following month.

The personal selection of the foreman by criminal court judges from outside of the empaneled jury pool has been ongoing in Tennessee for more than a century, as Fitzpatrick’s extensive research, published earlier this month, demonstrates.

A licensed attorney, Cunningham is president and CEO of the Athens Federal Community Bank.  Curiously, his successor to the foremanship of the grand jury, Larry Wallace, is a member of the Board of Directors at the same institution and a retired 40+-year law-enforcement professional.

When in 2014 Fitzpatrick requested that Cunningham recuse himself as foreman because he was named in the complaint, Cunningham refused, threatening Fitzpatrick with arrest on February 18 of that year with an armed deputy at Cunningham’s side.

In early March of that year, unbeknownst to Fitzpatrick, Cunningham resigned his position as grand jury foreman.  On March 18, Fitzpatrick again sought a hearing with the grand jury, after which he was arrested while awaiting a decision by two McMinn County sheriff’s deputies on two grand jury indictments.

By that time, Wallace was serving as foreman, but Reedy replaced him with Thomas Balkom with the apparent purpose of indicting Fitzpatrick as he sat on a bench reading a book outside of the grand jury room.

Cunningham and then-Tenth Judicial District chief prosecutor R. Steven Bebb, himself a former circuit court judge, signed indictments accusing Fitzpatrick of stalking, harassment, aggravated perjury and extortion.

Despite a tardy and vacuous Bill of Particulars produced by the prosecution as well as the absence of a signed police report or criminal complaint by the alleged accuser, Cunningham, Fitzpatrick’s two-day trial resulted in convictions on the two felonies of aggravated perjury and extortion.

On August 19, 2014, Fitzpatrick was sentenced to three years in state prison by Senior Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood, who has since entered full retirement.  As with a myriad of other Tennessee criminal court judges, Blackwood has appointed dozens of long-serving grand jury foremen from outside of the jury pool without regard for state law.

Fitzpatrick served more than 26 months in state prison. On October 25, 2016, he was released following three surgeries on his feet.  Medical personnel had gone so far as to consider amputation due to the extent of infection which had set in while Fitzpatrick was incarcerated. Fitzpatrick suffered other medical and dental ailments while confined.

Within his 400-odd-page document packet was an instruction sheet intended for court personnel on Tuesday requesting Wallace’s recusal and that any grand jury members reviewing his petition not be acquainted with him.

INSTRUCTIONS dtd 18 JULY 2017 McMINN COUNTY GRAND JURY

When Fitzpatrick initially faced Wallace on Tuesday, he demanded verbally that Wallace recuse himself for conflict of interest since he was named in Fitzpatrick’s current complaint.  After a consultation with Criminal Court Judge Sandra Donaghy and Atty. Joseph Hoffer of the Tenth Judicial District public defender’s office, Wallace agreed to recuse, and Donaghy appointed Mr. Terry Bowers as grand jury foreman pro tempore.

According to state law, Fitzpatrick should have been permitted the opportunity to choose two other members of the grand jury to form a three-person panel to provide an initial review of his complaint.  “Donaghy, Hoffer and Bowers picked the two others. I did not,” Fitzpatrick said.  Two women, one of whom was identified only by first name and the other not at all, became Bowers’s co-panelists at Donaghy’s behest.  “Neither woman read a single word of what I presented in my presence. Neither woman asked a single question,” Fitzpatrick recalled.

“Bowers and Hoffer grilled me on non-relevant concerns, then stated repeatedly that I’d not advanced a single criminal act under a T.C.A. statute that could be presented or indicted in McMinn County, meaning it was their opinion no case could be advanced to trial.  The three rigged Tuesday’s panel!!!”

Fitzpatrick noted after returning home that day that his appearance at the courthouse was unexpected, in contrast to the events of March 18, 2014.   Fitzpatrick termed that day, March 18, 2014, “an ambush” planned by Reedy, Bebb, and Cunningham.

On Friday, Fitzpatrick wrote to Hoffer in an email that the instructions he provided on Tuesday “were ignored almost completely.” However, he acknowledged that “Mr. Wallace understood them completely and removed himself from the McMinn County grand jury as its foreman regarding my criminal allegations.”

Later in the email, Fitzpatrick wrote, “One remedy available here is for my application to be judicially approved, by a judge other than Sandra N.C. Donaghy, and allow for my presentation before the full McMinn County grand jury. A grand jury formed in accordance with my 18 July 2017 instructions. Mr. Bowers, Miss Brenda and Lady #3 are all disqualified from sitting on the full grand jury once constitutionally assembled.”

He added, “Another is to call into existence another three person ‘panel,’ disinfected, in compliance with my instructions to hear again what I have to say as I make application.”

Of Wallace’s recusal, however, in comparing it to the scenario involving Cunningham more than three years earlier, Fitzpatrick commented, “Wallace’s recusal incriminates Cunningham…Wallace’s recusal incriminates both men.”

Fitzpatrick has filed complaints against Wallace and Cunningham with federal authorities, of which he has informed Hoffer.

[Editor’s Note:  This is the second report in this series.  Please look for Part 3 over the weekend.]

17 Responses to "Fitzpatrick Disqualifies Three-Member Grand Jury Panel, Requests New Hearing"

  1. T.F. B0W   Wednesday, July 26, 2017 at 5:49 PM

    Fitzpatrick filed a complaint with the Chief of Police, who forwarded it the very assistant district attorney who was present when Fitzpatrick made his unsuccessful presentation to the three-juror panel.

    It is easy enough to predict what the assistant district attorney’s brief response will be: “No.”

  2. Walter Francis Fitzpatrick III   Wednesday, July 26, 2017 at 5:16 PM

    Commander Fitzpatrick, The JAG HUNTER here: For Post & Email readers:

    Formal, sworn criminal complaints were filed with City of Athens, Tennessee Interim Chief of Police Captain Robert A. Davis on 7 July 2017. Messrs. Jeffrey Lane Cunningham, Larry D. Wallace and Joe Guy (county sheriff) were named as the objects of my filing.

    In a letter dated 10 July 2017 Chief of Police Davis is quoted:

    “I received your hand delivered dossier on Friday July 7, 2017 and your USPS Priority Mailed dossier of material on Monday July 10, 2017 regarding the alleged criminal activity of Messrs. Jeffrey Cunningham and Larry Wallace.

    “I immediately notified the 10th Judicial District Attorney’s Office of your charges and provided Assistant District Attorney General Joe Hoffer with a copy of you allegations and documentation.

    ADA Hoffer advised me that he will initiate an investigation into the allegations, research the Tennessee Code, and notify me of his findings and decision.”

    ADA Hoffer sent the following email update on 19 July 2017:

    “I am in receipt of your request to Chief of Police Rob Davis regarding the arrest of three citizens. I will address those allegations when I have sufficient time to review and reply. I have not had time to reply because of my heavy case load and the many court appearances that I have. However, I will let you know that my response will be greatly abbreviated as result of your appearance at the grand jury.

    “Thank you for you communications.

    Joseph V. Hoffer
    Assistant District Attorney General
    District Attorney General Stephen D. Crump
    10th Judicial District
    130 Washington Avenue
    (P.O. Box 647)
    Athens, TN 37371-0647
    (423) 744-2830
    (423) 744-2842 fax
    jvhoffer@tndagc.org

    Copies of Captain Davis’ 10 July 2017 letter and ADA Hoffer’s email dated 19 July 2017 are available on request. Copies are separately filed with The Post & Email.

    Contact me via email: jaghunter1@gmail.com

    “Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time. And it annoys the pig.”
    -Robert Heinlein, USNA Class of 1929

    Fair winds, following seas,
    Commander Fitzpatrick, USNA Class of 1975

  3. T.F. B0W   Wednesday, July 26, 2017 at 2:02 PM

    Credit where it is due: Fitzpatrick requested and received the current grand jury foreperson’s recusal, which is understandable since Fitzpatrick accused (unsuccessfully) that person of committing a crime. This recusal, however, does not “incriminate” anyone in any legal sense of the word.

    Fitzpatrick may have filed complaints, but there’s no indication of them being acted upon; there is no evidence of any active investigation.

    Rose and Hobby are both cases about racial discrimination, and not about how Tennessee selects grand jury forepersons generally. In addition, the prisoners in those cases all lost.

  4. Walter Francis Fitzpatrick III   Wednesday, July 26, 2017 at 8:02 AM

    Commander Fitzpatrick here: For the aware Post & Email audience:

    Larry Wallace was forced to remove himself from his illegal standing as a fake grand jury foreman because Larry Wallace faces criminal charges consequent his outlawed racketeering.

    Jeffrey Lane Cunningham was required to remove himself from the grand jury “anointment” in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014. But Cunningham refused to stand down. Cunningham lodged false accusations against me instead. A series of criminal racketeering acts Cunningham is criminally accused of now. An investigation is underway.

    Wallace’s recusal incriminates both Wallace and Cunningham in relation to extant, formal, sworn criminal complaints which are under investigation.

    Rose (1979) and Hobby (1984) both condemn discrimination, by any expression or means or motives, in the method of selection of Tennessee’s grand jury foremen.

    The identifiable class of people discriminated against has already been reported on. People paying any attention realize this. People who are not paying attention should be encouraged and glad to know I plan a subsequent report depicting the group of folks afflicted.

    I respond to the miscreants who it’s not necessary to name again, as they are “interested” enough in truth they are working hard to obfuscate.

    It’s because issues bring brought back to the attention of Post & Email readers is so damaging to the antifa, “resistence,” leftist movement that you find these cockroaches crawling on P&E pages at all. Watch ’em run when the lights go up.

    Does anyone find it surprising none of the trolls served in the uniform of our Armed Forces? Under our American flag they are more than happy to burn?

    Does it surprise anyone these cowards refuse to identify themselves at all while attacking me because I identify myself?

    “Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time. And it annoys the pig.” –Robert Heinlein, USNA Class of 1929.

    Commander Fitzpatrick signing off,
    USNA Class of 1975, Surface warfare officer – Naval parachutist
    Former executive officer and commanding officer (Captain),
    USS MARS (AFS-1)
    Email: jaghunter1@gmail.com

  5. raicha   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 8:26 PM

    Oh, and recusing yourself from consideration of a matter in which you have a material interest, such as being named as a potential defendant, is ethical practice in business, municipal and nonprofit affairs.

    It doesn’t imply guilt for anyone. See, for example, Atty Gen Sessions.

    Geesh.

  6. raicha   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 8:23 PM

    Hobby v. United States is even less useful to you. The biggest reason is that it is about selection of the FEDERAL grand jury members. You have been railing against counties in the State of Tennessee, claiming they are violating STATE statutes. A finding of discrimination in one system does carry over to a different set of procedures.

    Further, discrimination in selection of the FEDERAL grand jury did not invalidate its actions. Under Hobby, you not only have to find prohibited discrimination against a protected class (again, who is that?), but you must overcome Hobby’s holding that the federal grand jury foreman position is ministerial. You would have to demonstrate that the foreman’s powers are far greater than ministerial AND that the process of selection discriminates against a protected class.

    Please explain how you can do that.

    Seriously, if you can’t explain it to those actually interested in your reply, you will have nothing but woe trying to convince the truly disinterested folks in Tennessee.

  7. raicha   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 8:11 PM

    Justice Blackmun did indeed decry discrimination in Rose v. Miller. But the case deals with racial discrimination in the selection of the grand jury foreman. To the extent Tennessee law intends or results in racial discrimination, the process is invalid.

    But Rose is not “on point” to validate your claims and you have never laid out a coherent analogy that would convince a judge to apply it.

    For example, can you explain to a judge how reappointing a GJ foreman to multiple terms is “discrimination” in the sense of Rose? Who is being discriminated against? And is that person a member of a protected class, i.e. race, gender, religion?

    If you can’t articulate an answer to that, you can’t use Rose to help your, eh, cause.

  8. raicha   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 8:03 PM

    Yet more unsupported claims by the Lt. Commander. Numerous sources, including the Navy Correspondence Manual (SECNAV M-5216.5 (2015)) state:

    “11. Identifying Navy and Marine Corps Personnel…Fully identify the member when you first mention him or her. In later references to the member, simply use the rank or rate and last name.

    a. Navy Requirements…

    (6) EXAMPLE: ADM Michelle L. Howard, USN, XXX-XX-1234/1110
    CAPT Vorrice J. Burks, USN, XXX-XX-1234/6410
    LCDR Kenneth O. Allison, USN, XXX-XX-1234/3100
    YN1 (SW) Robert L. Gabel, USN, 1234567890
    YN2 Jazsmne Wilson, USN, XXX-XX-1234”

    In written correspondence, you should be addressed as Lt. Commander in the first instance (on the envelope, in address section of the letter) and then by “Dear Commander:”. Verbal salutation is “Good Morning, Commander”, or a variation.

    But for you to refer to yourself solely as “Commander” in written correspondence is a misrepresentation of your rank.

    Again, your citation to relevant authority to support your position is welcome.

  9. Walter Francis Fitzpatrick III   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 6:06 PM

    For the edification of The Post & Email audience…

    Proper, accepted, commonly-used forms of address for officers in the armed forces:

    Fleet Admiral
    Vice Admiral “Admiral”
    Rear Admiral (upper half)
    Rear Admiral (lower half)

    General of the Army
    General “General”
    Lieutenant General
    Major General

    Colonel
    Lieutenant Colonel “Colonel”

    Commander “Commander”
    Lieutenant Commander

    First Lieutenant
    Second Lieutenant “Lieutenant”
    Lieutenant Junior Grade

    The same goes for the enlisted grades.

    Moving on:

    Judge Sandra Donaghy, Assistant District Attorney Joseph Hoffer, elected Criminal Court Clerk Rhonda Cooley, pro tem grand jury foreman Terry Bowers and illicit grand jury foreman Larry D. Wallace recognized my legal authority to issue instructions on Tuesday, 18 July 2017, and obeyed my instructions as I presented myself before the McMinn County grand jury.

    Larry D. Wallace recused himself from his outlaw position as make-believe grand jury foreman. Judge Donaghy ordered Bowers to replace Wallace. Wallace complied.

    Recusing himself, Wallace renders valid my correct legal arguments. Along the way, Wallace incriminated his predecessor, Jeffrey Lane Cunningham, and Wallace incriminated himself.

    Controlling legal authority on the issue, as cited so many times, is Rose v. Mitchell (1979) and Hobby v. United States (1984).

    In Rose (1979), Associate Justice Harry Blackmun, in writing the majority opinion stated: “…discrimination in Tennessee’s method of selection of the grand jury foreman ‘not only violates our Constitution and the laws enacted under [the Constitution], but IS ALSO AT WAR with our basic concepts of a democratic society and a representative government.’

    Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren E. Burger, writing for the majority in Hobby (1984), took this judicial notice: “The result of discrimination in foreman selection under the Tennessee system was that 1 of the 13 grand jurors had been selected as a voting member in an impermissible fashion.”

    Legal scholar Attorney Marvin Zalman cited Rose and Hobby in his 2002, Third Edition, Criminal Procedure: Constitution & Society (pg. 425) summarizing: “The [United States Supreme Court]…held in Rose v. Mitchell (1979) the [Tipton County grand jury] foreman was not selected from among the local grand jury but instead from outside of it by a judge. Furthermore, the foreman had significant power in issuing subpoenas that could influence the substance of an indictment. This did constitute a [U.S. Constitution Fourteenth Amendment] due process violation.”

    In closing: I’ll leave it to the vivid imaginations of Post & Email readers to come up with the proper forms of address for “rachia” and her fellow traveling “resistance” buddies from the fogbow (“T.F. Bow” and “Lane Hudson”) – cowards all, hiding behind pseudonyms.

    “Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time. And it annoys the pig.” –Robert Heinlein USNA Class of 1929

    Here endth another lesson!

    Fair winds, following seas,
    /s/
    Commander Fitzpatrick, U.S. Navy, Retired
    USNA Class of 1975

    Email: jaghunter1@gmail.com

  10. raicha   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 3:37 PM

    Hmm. I thought W. Fitzpatrick was a Lt. Commander, not a full commander. What’s with that? Also, too, I read his instructions to the grand jury but didn’t see the part where he had any legal authority to impose those procedures on the panel, the attorneys or the judge. If W .Fitzpatrick wants to convince others, including the panel, attorneys and/or judge, he might try presenting valid legal arguments along the way. The only citations and statutes I have discerned in his many pages of documents over the years are inapplicable, directly contrary to his position, or simply misread by W. Fitzpatrick and his follower(s). Sadly, he seems headed for yet another pointless confrontation with law enforcement and is sure to be on the losing end.

  11. T.F. B0W   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 2:09 PM

    As Fitzpatrick did not specify which statement was a lie, dissembly, or disinformation (or why he believes any are), it is easy enough that no statement is.

  12. Walter Francis Fitzpatrick III   Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 10:17 AM

    Commander Fitzpatrick, USNA 1975, quoting Steve Bannon:

    “They’re gonna mock you,
    they’re gonna vilify you,
    they’re gonna dismiss you,
    they’re gonna ignore you.
    And you just have to say it doesn’t matter,
    it’s not relevant and you’re just going
    to have to power through it.”

    Quoting Robert Heinlein USNA 1929:

    “Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time. And it annoys the pig.”

    Here endth another lesson!!

    Email: jaghunter1@gmail.com

  13. Lane Hudson   Monday, July 24, 2017 at 9:04 PM

    Does the comment policy here allow someone to call other people Nazi’s merely because they pointed out serious errors in Mr. Fitzpatrick’s plan of action? It was after all similar behavior that resulted in two prior convictions. The ad hominem attacks are unbecoming of you sir.

  14. T.F. B0W   Monday, July 24, 2017 at 9:51 AM

    Perhaps Fitzpatrick could specify what specific statement is, in his opinion, a lie, dissembly, or disinformation.

  15. Walter Francis Fitzpatrick III   Monday, July 24, 2017 at 8:25 AM

    Paul Joseph Goebbels was a German politician and Reich Minister of Propaganda from 1933 to 1945. Goebbels was one of Adolf Hitler’s closest associates and most devoted followers, and was known for his public speaking skills. Goebbels is famously quoted saying: “If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it, and you will even come to believe it yourself.”

    “Lane Hudson” and “T.F. Bow” are Joseph Goebbels incarnate in modern day.

    Ignore these two coward clowns. They lie. They dissemble. They spread disinformation to nurture their antifa agenda like gardeners spread fertilizer to nurture and grow plants.

    Pay no attention to the “Lane Hudsons” and “T.F. Bows” of this country. They tell you their lies unceasingly, lies they believe themselves. The Truth will out, and…

    …“Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time. And it annoys the pig!”

    Commander Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III
    United States Navy Retired
    Surface warfare officer – Naval parachutist
    Distinguished Military Graduate
    United States Naval Academy at Annapolis
    Class of 1975
    Eagle Scout 1969
    B.S., MBA, Masters of Technology Management

  16. Lane Hudson   Sunday, July 23, 2017 at 5:08 PM

    The is no law that allows a private citizen to march into a court and start dictating terms to the court and a grand jury, not in Tennessee or anywhere else. Mr. Fitzpatrick is working on getting himself charged again with harassment and other charges. It’s only a matter of time.

    He also continues to cite cases where his theories were on the losing side.

    I will be back when the inevitable happens to say I told him so.

  17. T.F. B0W   Saturday, July 22, 2017 at 9:34 PM

    Interesting that Trump has time to consider pardoning himself, but not enough time to pardon Fitzpatrick or Huff. Or Lakin.

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