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COURT CLERK WHO TESTIFIED AT FITZPATRICK’S JUNE 28, 2010 ARRAIGNMENT ALSO SELECTED THE JURY
by Sharon Rondeau
(Jan. 10, 2011) — On June 28, 2010, Monroe County Circuit Court Clerk Martha M. Cook served as a witness during an arraignment hearing for Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III.
She also chose the jury members for Fitzpatrick’s December 1 trial for four felonies and two misdemeanor charges issued by the grand jury for an April 1 citizen’s arrest.
Is a witness allowed to play any other role in a case after testifying?
Cook’s name is also printed on the Capias and Bond document issued to arrest Fitzpatrick for failure to appear at a hearing at the criminal court, despite the fact that no proof of service had been made that Fitzpatrick had received notification of the hearing. No judge’s signature appears on the document.
Charges against Fitzpatrick were brought by a grand jury which contained at least two members who had served during the previous term, Angela Davis and Gary Pettway, contrary to Tennessee state law. The judge’s response to Fitzpatrick’s contention that the grand jury was tainted was:
During argument on defendant’s Motion to Dismiss, assertions were made that the foreperson of the grand jury which issued the indictment in this cause, Angela Davis had served previously as a petit juror within a period of 24 months prior to her service as grand jury foreperson in this matter. Included as Exhibit A to defendant’s motion is an Order signed by Judge Amy Reedy which appoints Angela Davis grand jury foreperson on June 2, 2010. Exhibit B to defendant’s motion is a certification from the Clerk of Monroe County to the Director of Finance of Monroe County. This certification indicated Angela Davis was a petit juror from January through July 2009.
The Record however is devoid of any proof that the said Angela Davis that served as grand jury foreperson and the Angela Davis that served as a petit juror is one and the same person.
This is an additional finding by the Court along with the entire Record whereby the Court denies defendant’s Motion to Dismiss the Indictment.
Fitzpatrick had asserted that the entire panel of grand jury members was tainted because they had been working with Gary Pettway prior to the indictment date of June 3, 2010, who had been the subject of Fitzpatrick’s citizen’s arrest on April 1.
If the charges arose from a tainted grand jury, shouldn’t the judge have investigated further to assure that the grand jury had been convened lawfully before proceeding?
The Post & Email is in possession of documents utilized to select jury members in Monroe County which contain such personal information as address, marital status, and employer; home, cell and work telephone numbers; education level, and prior jury service. Therefore, the court should be in possession of proof as to whether or not the same Angela Davis served for two consecutive terms.
Given the existence of such working papers containing handwritten notes, crossouts, “X’s” beside names and obvious human intervention, is the law being followed in juror selection in Monroe County? The law also states that a grand jury foreman serves for a term of two years, but Mr. Pettway has been serving for more than 20 years consecutively.
If Martha Cook served as a witness in Fitzpatrick’s case, why did she choose, and specifically, hand-pick, the jury for his trial? Why did she fulfill any other role other than as a witness on June 28? Why was she allowed to do so?
Why was a witness allowed to issue an arrest warrant for the defendant?
If the Capias and Bond issued on October 22 for Fitzpatrick’s arrest was legitimate, why was no proof of service obtained by the court? Did the October 27 arrest of Fitzpatrick amount to a kidnapping, as he has claimed?
If the grand jury issuing the indictment was illicit, is the indictment valid? If the person who assembled the trial jury members has a conflict of interest, is the outcome of that trial valid? At the December 1 trial, one juror was dismissed due to previous service which was too recent for him to qualify to serve again. Why, then, was Angela Davis allowed to serve a second consecutive term?
Are any of these actions on the part of Monroe County constitutional, or have the judges and court personnel established a rival government to that of the Tennessee constitution and the U.S. Constitution?
The documents used to select jury members ask how long the person has resided in Monroe County, but they do not ask if the person is a U.S. citizen.
How many juries throughout the country are assembled in this manner? How many illegal aliens have served on grand juries or trial juries in the United States?
How are the juries chosen in your community?