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from a reader and resident of Tennessee

Do members of the current Tennessee General Assembly even know the laws passed by previous sessions of the state legislative body?

(Jun. 17, 2012) — [Editor’s Note:  A registered voter in Tennessee sent the following to her state representative, Phillip Johnson, after reading our report from Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III regarding laws passed in 1984 by the Tennessee General Assembly ordering the courts to reorganize which were never implemented.  Instead of convening grand juries by districts, as ordered by the new laws, judges across the state continued to preside over criminal matters in each county, with grand juries and trial juries selected strictly from each county’s population.  The 1984 laws ordered that 31 judicial districts be created, with most districts to comprise several counties.

The registered voter’s communications with Rep. Johnson are presented here in chronological order.]

From: redacted
Sent: Monday, June 04, 2012 11:03 AM

Subject: Serious Crininal Matter

Dear Mr. Johnson,

In 1984 the legislature ordered the elimination of all county criminal courts in the State of Tennessee.  It has come to my attention that the counties have continued to conduct criminal courts in violation of the order set forth in 1984.

Veteran Walter Fitzpatrick III has been harassed by the county of Monroe.  While I know that this will cause a major problem, being that many people have been convicted and served time after being convicted in an illegal court, I am sure you understand the seriousness of this situation and as my representative will investigate and take steps to correct this problem.

No one is above the law, and this includes the county police force and court judges.

Thank you,
redacted – registered voter
Kingston Springs, TN

Having received no response, the registered voter sent another email:

From: redacted
Sent: Friday, June 15, 2012 2:46 AM

Subject: Serious Crininal Court Matter

Dear Representative Johnson,

I sent the below note to your office on June 4th, and have not received a reply.  The matter discussed in the note is one of Constitutional rights for ALL citizens of the great State of Tennessee.  If the courts have been illegally conducting trials and convicting citizens in a court that was eliminated by law in 1984 – TCA 16-16-101 and TCA 16-2-507 – then their Constitutional rights have been violated.

Is there a more important issue than the Constitutional rights of our citizens?

Just so you know.  I do not have a friend or family member incarcerated in a Tennessee jail.  I am simply a concerned citizen.

Thank you in advance for your reply,
redacted – registered voter

Kingston Springs, TN

cc: Editor of Post and Email

Editor’s Additional Notes

When The Post & Email joined a live chat session on June 15, 2012 with Knoxville News Sentinel crime reporter Jamie Satterfield regarding a fiery exchange which took place on June 14, 2012 between Senior Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood and Knox County District Attorney General Randy Nichols, we submitted two comments explaining the discovery of the 1984 laws ordering criminal matters to be heard by district and not county courts with references.  Subsequently we were banned from participating in the live chat.  Satterfield continued the session with readers, telling her audience that Blackwood was, in her opinion, “a fair-minded judge.”

In the field of journalism, reports are expected to be objective so that the audience can make up its own mind about the matter at hand.  If the reporter’s opinion is injected into the discourse, it is considered editorializing.

Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood is the same judge who stated during an arraignment hearing for Walter Fitzpatrick that there was “no proof” that a person named “Angela Davis” who served on the “Monroe County Grand Jury” in 2009 and again in 2010 was the same person.  Because the Monroe County court clerk collects significant personal data on those selected to be prospective grand jurors, it would appear that it would not have been difficult to verify Blackwood’s assumption in order to comply with the law.

TCA 22-2-314 prohibits the service of anyone who has served on a jury during the preceding 24 months:

22-2-314.  Limitation on jury service.

A juror who has completed a jury service term shall not be summoned to serve another jury service term in any court of this state for a period of twenty-four (24) months following the last day of such service; however, the county legislative body of any county, may, by majority vote, extend the twenty-four-month period.

HISTORY: Acts 2008, ch. 1159, § 1.

Later on June 15, Fitzpatrick reached Satterfield by telephone and explained his discovery of the 1984 laws.  He told The Post & Email that she responded, “I have never heard of district courts in Tennessee,” although she has been a reporter for the News Sentinel since 1994.  When Fitzpatrick told Satterfield that The Post & Email had participated in the chat session earlier that day and attempted to bring the matter to her attention, Satterfield did not offer a response.  She then told Fitzpatrick that she would investigate our reports about the 1984 laws and the evidence that they have never been observed by the judiciary.  Fitzpatrick said that he told Satterfield that when she sat in court on the 14th observing the events involving Blackwood and Nichols, she had actually been sitting in a probate court unauthorized to deal with criminal cases.

Following the live chat on Friday, The Post & Email received a response from a member of the public submitted to the editor’s mailbox appearing to attempt to refute our contentions.  The exchange of emails began:

From:  redacted
Sent:  Fri 6/15/12 2:18 PM
To:  editor@thepostemail.com
Subject: Post about Tennessee Courts reorganized by county v. districts

Message Body:
Please note that TN courts ARE organized by district. It just so happens that Knox count and the 6th Judicial district have the same boundaries.

Other districts include multiple, smaller counties.

This mail is sent via contact form on The Post & Email http://www.thepostemail.com

Because TCA 16-2-506(6)(A) designates the county of Knox to be its own district, The Post & Email responded:

Yes, we are aware of that.  However, the other counties never reorganized, and the stationery and court documents used do not indicate “district court.”  They still say “Monroe County Criminal Court” or “Knox County Criminal Court,” unless you know otherwise.

If so, please send that documentation to us.  Thank you for your response.

Sharon Rondeau, Editor
The Post & Email

The person then replied:

They are all District courts.  Lawyers still refer to the “Knox County Criminal Court”, but the proper way to refer to it is “the Sixth District Criminal Court at Knox County”  Same with Monroe county – “The 10th Judicial District Criminal Court at Monroe County”

Judges are state employees, not county employees and run for office by districts, not by county.

Since people practice in counties, it is just a shorthand to refer to the “Monroe County Chancery Court” but it is just that – shorthand.

All courts of record in Tennessee are based on Districts – and the District Attorneys general are based on Districts as well.

Judges in the 10th Judicial District “ride the circuit”  – hold court in Cleveland, Athens, and Madisonville.  But there is one Clerk, One DA, and the Judge(s) split their time between those locations – all in the 10th District. (Bradley, McMinn, Monroe, and Polk Counties)

To which The Post & Email replied:

Then why does each county have its own grand jury?  Why do the grand juries not comprise citizens from the district?

A county court is defined by TCA 16-16-107.  The way in which grand juries are selected is mandated by TCA 16-2-510.

We then received the following:

Because crimes are committed in counties, not districts.  Jurisdiction is still by County – the political boundaries.

I see your confusion – re-read 16-16-107 – the county court is basically the Probate court with some chancery court jurisdictions.

Read 16-16-101(b) and 16-16-107(b)  – county court jurisdiction only applies to 5 counties.

Also – the County Judge, 16-16-106, is not a precluded from practicing law in the state courts.

These duties do not conflict or intrude on the State courts of record (Circuit, Criminal, Chancery).

TCA 16-16-101 reads:


(a) A court is established in each county for the dispatch of probate and other business entrusted to it, to be called the county court.

(b) Subsection (a) shall only apply in counties having a population, according to the 2000 federal census, of:  Click here to view image.

(c) In counties having a population of not less than thirty-nine thousand fifty (39,050) nor more than thirty-nine thousand one hundred fifty (39,150), according to the 2000 federal census or any subsequent federal census, the circuit court clerk, who also serves as the general sessions court clerk, shall serve as the clerk of the court with probate jurisdiction in any such counties.

HISTORY:Code 1858, § 127 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 6, § 1); Shan., § 221; Code 1932, § 161; modified; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-701; Acts 2003, ch. 310, §§ 1, 6-10; 2005, ch. 245, §§ 1, 2.

Fitzpatrick had found a volume containing Tennessee Code Annotated published as a “2009 Replacement” with the “Seal of the Tennessee Code Commission,” the names of members of the state Supreme Court, and the name of the state Attorney General, Robert E. Cooper, Jr. on the front.  However, the laws it contains are indicated as current to the 2011-2012 session of the Tennessee General Assembly.

Copy of cover of "Tennessee Code Annotated, Volume 4, 2009 Replacement" from the Athens, TN Public Library
Enlarged top portion of TCA volume
Seal of the Tennessee Code Commission
Names of members of the Tennessee Supreme Court, Attorney General Cooper, and the library stamp

TCA 16-2-506, entitledEstablishment of judicial districts — Assistant district attorneys general — Criminal investigators — Equity and law courts – Chancery courts” explains the redistricting plan dealing with criminal investigations within the designated districts.  The notes contained in the 2009 volume indicate that changes to the court system were made and were to take effect on June 1, 1984.

Page copied from "Tennessee Code Annotated, Vol. 4, 2009 Replacement" from the Athens, TN Public Library
Enlarged text of TCA 16-2-502 from "Tennessee Code Annotated, Vol. 4, 2009 Replacement"
Second paragraph enlarged
Third paragraph
Last paragraph of page 20
Page 225 from "Tennessee Code Annotated, Vo. 4, 2009 Replacement" subtitled "Notes to Decisions"
Enlarged top portion of Notes to TCA 16-16-102 explaining functions of courts as mandated by the legislature
TCA 16-16-102 subtitled "Special laws continued" and referring to the federal census as in the online Lexis-Nexis publication

A citizen of a county within the Tenth Judicial District told The Post & Email that in speaking with his state senator, shaking his hand and then discussing the 1984 laws in regard to the judiciary, the senator responded, “I don’t believe you,” dropped the man’s hand and walked away.

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  1. The fact of the matter is the way the State of Tennessee, via Monroe County, responded to CDR Fitzpatrick when he attempted to exercise his Constitutional rights.
    As you may recall, the way the Court treated CDR Fitzpatrick was shocking to all citizens of these United States, let alone the good citizens of the State of Tennessee and of Monroe County, specifically.
    Law enforcement, as officers of the court, immediately viciously lashed-out at, as, unfortunately, we expect the law to act these days: tantrum over reason.
    And you may also recall that a SWAT team was called-in as a show of unmitigated overwhelming force in re-arresting Fitzpatrick, as if the first one wasn’t unlawful enough, and if that wasn’t an admission of a runaway judicial system that is doing everything to shield unlawful and criminal activity then nothing will. Whoever wrote to Sharon on June 15th is part of the problem, as is EVERYONE who has grossly and blatantly violated Fitzpatrick’s Constitutional rights, and that includes all up to and including the Governor, Bill Haslam.
    The pay-offs, bribes, drug, gambling, human slavery, prostitution, shake-downs, are all CASH COWS, as is the cashing and depositing of government checks supposedly going to citizens for pharmaceuticals, disabilities, food/clothing/housing assistance that go into General Funds and get distributed to everyone in on the gravy train, staring with Monroe County, which receives public money for each prisoner incarcerated. The less money allocated to house a prisoner just means more money in the General Kitty, the trough of taxpayer dollars paying crooks, government employees and civilian contractors one and all, each salivating over illegal gains: that condo in Key West, for example.
    Had CDR Fitzpatrick been treated with respect, and his issues addressed in a legal manner, then maybe, just maybe, some respect and consideration would be given to the public servants in Monroe County. As it is, consider Monroe County, its judges, court clerks, its Sheriff, SWAT team, just low class scum as members of a den of thieves (and, for good measure, whoever wrote back to Sharon JUSTIFYING CDR Fitzpatrick’s treatment). For SHAME!

  2. It’s fun to see them squirm. They will attempt all sorts of cowardly schemes to cover this one up but what about all the people like Walt and Darren Huff that have been deliberatly crushed by Obama’s orders and Hitlerian desperate attempts to keep the truth out of the picture? Is the Judicial any different, now that they know they may have a giant problem? Especially in Tennessee where this may have been a Judicial disaster of unthinkable proportion dating back through thousands of cases and could generate law suits that will fill train cars. It will be interesting to see how they will schuffle the cards here and see the well paid Judicial pop out from the curtains with protective statements when untold stories, sentences, lives ruined, laws never followed, fortunes paid to “Trial Attorneys” and “Criminal Attorneys” that were probably all illegal trials to begin with while the “Wizard Of Ozz” said “Pay No Attention To The Man Behind The Curtain, The Great Oz Has SPOKEN!” Wo! Looks like a big BOO BOO! Lets see what values “Trust Law” renders to “The Strawman/Trustee” but wait a minute, I thought that they were the “Public Trustees” in limited liability? Uh oh! Let’s not get too technical, we might expose some of the original “Trust Law” here. Personally, “I am my own Administrator, in 100% liability of my self UNDER GOD!” and NOT a “Public Trustee”. Thank you. If I recall, the “Judicial” tried to create amendments to the fourth part of our government “The Grand Jury” which was written into our Constitution to allow citizens the right to petition the COURTS in case of corruption, usurpation, illigitimate operators, criminal activity, danger to the public trust,etc. The “amendments” were started in 1946 to protect “Trial Attorneys” from being stopped or interrupted in trial by a “Grand Jury Presentment” coming in the doors of the courts, possibly costing them MONEY buy trial interruption by from Presentments. Isn’t that why Hillary has called the illegal use of a “NO STANDING RULE” against ANY Criminal Grand Jury Presentments presented to the courts to protect “The Obama Administration”? Worked in the California Judge Carter Case with PA Orly Taitz attempting to protect Military Officers who were standing up for their sworn right and duty to protect America from “Foreign & Domestic” enemies from a usurping POTUS. Hillary’s name was at the head of the court document ordering Judge Carter to call it a “No Standing” presentment and to “blow it out” and he did while humiliating Orly Taitz for trying to follow the real procedure of what was our written law before this criminal administration used “Hope & Change” to nullify the Constitutional Law. How do you prosecute “The Judicial”????? Let’s see what happens. “In GOD WE TRUST”, all others pay cash. Original “Trust Law”- The Father, The Son, The Holy Ghost. Re-written “Trust Law”-The Administrator, The Executor, The Trustee. Lets see where America chooses for the “Liability” to fall. Time to clean out the ‘dirty closets’ of Trust Law.

  3. Woops! Looks just like any other “public trustee” when asked a question about any problem. How do you keep those government paychecks rolling in? Just don’t say anything, pretend there is no problem, use a “corporate appologetics approving smile”, look angry and walk away, say “you have to get to a meeting” and run away, you name it, how to cover up the truth, “it’s not my job”, etc. It’s all to clear on how “new management” is run in government, business, corporate, law enforcement, military, etc., the silence is deafening and the pretense is mountainous but it’s all accross the board, it’s standard procedure to maintain this garbage untill the last round gets their retirement. Just like all the money stolen during this administration, as Rush Limbaugh stated was to float and pay the unions and leaders to get through this created recession with the stolen money, then use “stimulus” money to put back what they had stolen making it look like they did something. It was to quash down any opposition to the theft and lies, locking down Constitutional law with the judicial, all playing along for paychecks and it has worked so far since 3/4 of America is sleep walking or mentally unable to understand the vastness of this scam which really started as a trial in Europe before Obambi was injected in to power when a finance power group bankrupted a country in 2 years selling them on “Green Environmentalism”, then they came to Wall Street to run the game on a larger level. The Dems were all sync’d up with the entire process, add Dr. Fred Newman’s plans to push Bari Shabazz into POTUS with the Dem’s and you have the short story of the real thing that is active as we speak. The monster is alive sort of like a Godzilla movie. But in the end, Godzilla is usually eliminated. Let’s see what happens at the voting polls. Ever wondered where all that mystery money went that was reported to be flowing into that phony Funeral Home in Lousiana after Obambi usurped POTUS? Solendra, MF Global and others, can they all hide under the 5th Amendment? Where is a better place to hide: “under a big rock”, “under the 5th Amendment”, “in the Obama Administration”? Maybe we should ask Eric Holder, genius in his own mind who has created a “genius loci” in DC that would make anyone not born to steal, need to vomit.

  4. The response from “a member of the public” seems to be a lawyer and shill for the judiciary.

    No matter how the shill tries to spin it, grand juries are seated in the counties and review “capital or otherwise infamous crimes”. And that is what was disallowed by the 1984 statutes.

    Wasn’t Jim Miller’s “killer” charged by the Monroe County grand jury and is Monroe county not a part of the, four county, 10th District, according to the shill? And weren’t those juries “appointed” by the Monroe County clerk and judges? And isn’t this why the statue was written in 1984, i.e. to prevent the very corruption that is endemic in the east TN judiciary?