Archive for the ‘City of Monroe’ Category

Ouachita Court Coverup Update

07/20/2016

Attorney General passes on prosecuting law clerk

By Zach Parker zach@ouachitacitizen.com

Fourth Judicial District Court law clerk Allyson Campbell cleared another legal hurdle this week when state Attorney General Jeff Landry issued a letter saying there’s not enough evidence to secure a “sustainable” conviction against Campbell for payroll fraud and the destruction of court documents.

The Ouachita Citizen’s review of state campaign finance records revealed a substantial contribution from Campbell’s brother-in-law to Landry’s campaign for attorney general. Landry defeated Buddy Caldwell, who was the incumbent, in a November 2015 run-off.

Christian Creed, a Monroe attorney, is Campbell’s brother-in-law; his wife, Catherine, also an attorney, is Campbell’s sister. Campaign finance records revealed Christian Creed made a campaign contribution of $5,000 to Landry on Nov. 12, 2015, prior to the run-off election, though he also had made a total of $1,500 in campaign contributions to Caldwell on and before Nov. 9, 2015.

Ouachita Court Coverup Update

07/13/2016

Federal judge rules LSP report is evidence

By Zach Parker zach@ouachitacitizen.com

Fourth Judicial District Court Judge Sharon Marchman can use information from a Louisiana State Police investigation as evidence in her lawsuit against district court officials and their attorneys, a federal judge ruled last week.

The State Police investigative report has surfaced as a key element in the controversy surrounding Allyson Campbell, a law clerk at Fourth Judicial District Court. The State Police report on the investigation of Campbell’s activities is incriminating, according to a pleading filed Tuesday by Marchman.

Marchman’s lawsuit in U.S. District Court claims Campbell was paid for hours she did not work at Fourth Judicial District Court and that she also destroyed or concealed documents filed with the district court. Some Fourth Judicial District Court judges as well as local and state attorneys concealed Campbell’s activities and conspired with Campbell to retaliate against Marchman when the judge tried to shed light on the allegations against the clerk, according to Marchman’s lawsuit.

The State Police report on the investigation of the district court was filed under seal with the federal court last month. Marchman filed the State Police report as evidence to support her opposition to requests, or motions, for dismissal filed by Campbell, her attorney Brian Crawford of Monroe and the judges’ attorney, Jon Guice of Monroe. Those three individuals, who are each defendants in Marchman’s lawsuit, had previously asked the federal court to dismiss Marchman’s lawsuit.

Baton Rouge Newspaper: “Goofy” Monroe DA

07/03/2016

James Gill: In case of Alabama ‘stoners’ Cam Robinson, Hootie Jones, ‘goofy’ Monroe DA creates ‘blatant perversion of justice’

by James Gill

The press has moved on from that goofy district attorney who refused to file charges against two stoners found with guns in their car. Cam Robinson and Hootie Jones were deemed worthy of a pass because they play for the Crimson Tide.

This blatant perversion of justice got so many laughs that nobody seems to have noticed quite how serious it was. This was not, as some reports suggested, just a couple of kids given a break over a run-of-the-mill offense. Possessing drugs and a weapon at the same time means a mandatory five years in prison under Louisiana law. Robinson and Jones probably don’t know how lucky they are.

Robinson and Jones are from Monroe, where the local district attorney, Jerry Jones, achieved fleeting national attention a few weeks ago by announcing he was letting them off the hook because they had been sweating at football practice while the rest of us were taking it easy in the A/C. Jones presumably figured the voters of Ouachita Parish would agree with that reasoning, although it is possible that roofers or farm workers, say, did not find it persuasive.

It left Robinson and Hootie Jones to face the wrath of coach Nick Saban. Only a cynic would doubt that character is a prime consideration for college football coaches and that they always will take appropriate disciplinary measures.

Except, perhaps, if that would hurt their chance of winning. Saban’s wrath may not be enough to keep Robinson and Hootie Jones off the field for the season opener against USC.

Ouachita DA Firestorm Update

06/27/2016

Additional details of the arrest last May of two University of Alabama football players have been revealed by the Ouachita Citizen’s Zach Parker.

Six Monroe police officers involved in the arrest of two Alabama football players turned up DNA evidence and reported observing high-powered handguns and marijuana in plain view in the suspects’ automobile, as revealed in a Monroe police case file, though Fourth Judicial District Attorney Jerry Jones took a pass at prosecuting the pair.

The six police officers’ reports entail a number of new details in the case, including conflicting statements made by the four men in the automobile.

See here the article.

The district attorney’s decision to keep the case away from a Ouachita Parish grand jury was reached amid ongoing scrutiny over Jones’ recent handling of an investigation into controversy surrounding Fourth Judicial District Court officials, including Jones’ contradictory statements about that investigation, its reports, his filing of misleading court documents as well as his decision to keep this newspaper’s criminal complaint out of the hands of agencies investigating the court.

See here the complete 49 page police report.

Ouachita Judges Say They’re Above the Law

06/23/2016

Judges claim immunity to lawsuits for acts of corruption

By Zach Parker zach@ouachitacitizen.com

Some Fourth Judicial District Court judges, who face claims for damages in a lawsuit filed in federal court by their peer Judge Sharon Marchman, filed pleadings Monday arguing they cannot be sued for acts of corruption or malice.

The four defendant judges making that argument are judges Fred Amman, Wilson Rambo and Carl Sharp as well as retired Judge Ben Jones, who now serves as court administrator, at Fourth Judicial District Court for Ouachita and Morehouse parishes. They are represented by special assistant attorney general Brian D. Landry, of Shreveport.

Those four judges are just a few of a handful of defendants who Marchman claimed violated her constitutional rights when she tried to expose the defendants’ concerted efforts to cover up law clerk Allyson Campbell’s alleged payroll fraud and document destruction.

Ouachita DA Creates National Firestorm

06/20/2016

From the New York Post

DA: I didn’t charge Alabama stars because they play football

By Howie Kussoy

Play football, avoid prosecution.

District attorney Jerry Jones of Louisiana is declining to press charges against two Alabama football players — left tackle Cam Robinson and safety Laurence “Hootie” Jones — who were arrested in May. While the filing from the Ouachita Parish District Attorney’s office cites insufficient evidence, Jones stated he was reluctant to hurt the players’ careers.

Both players were arrested in their hometown of Monroe, La., and were potentially facing charges of possession of a controlled dangerous substance. Robinson also could have been subject to a felony charge for illegal possession of a firearm.

“I want to emphasize once again that the main reason I’m doing this is that I refuse to ruin the lives of two young men who have spent their adolescence and teenage years, working and sweating, while we were all in the air conditioning,” Jones told KNOE-TV.

062016 Decline

Robinson arrest

Recall that neighboring Lincoln Parish District Attorney John Belton disobeyed a Federal Judge’s order regarding school attendance zones for his kids.

Ouachita Court Coverup Update

06/17/2016

Defendants: Marchman has no ‘direct proof’

By Zach Parker zach@ouachitacitizen.com

A number of defendants sued by Fourth Judicial District Court Judge Sharon Marchman in federal court filed motions last week to dismiss her lawsuit, arguing Marchman has given no proof to support her “bizarre” and “sensational” allegations.

Marchman’s allegations that law clerk Allyson Campbell committed payroll fraud and concealed or destroyed court filings form the center of her lawsuit before U.S. District Court Judge Maurice Hicks. In her lawsuit, Marchman claims nine defendants — including Campbell, four district court judges and their attorneys — conspired to cover up Campbell’s activities and retaliated against Marchman for trying to uncover their efforts.

A number of the accusations levied and defendants named in Marchman’s lawsuit also are at the heart of litigation pursued in Fourth Judicial District Court by Monroe businessman Stanley R. Palowsky III. It was in Palowsky’s lawsuit against his former business partner, Brandon Cork, that the accusations of payroll fraud and document destruction against Campbell first surfaced. Later those accusations were the basis of Palowsky’s July 2015 lawsuit, also filed in Fourth Judicial District Court, against the law clerk and five district court judges.

Ouachita Court Coverup Update

06/02/2016

Palowsky appeals ruling dismissing suit against clerk, judges

By Zach Parker zach@ouachitacitizen.com

Monroe businessman Stanley R. Palowsky III asked the Second Circuit Court of Appeal last week to overturn several rulings by an ad hoc judge who dismissed the businessman’s lawsuit against Fourth Judicial District Court judges and law clerk Allyson Campbell.

The accusations at the heart of Stanley R. Palowsky III v. Allyson Campbell and others center on whether Campbell destroyed and concealed documents that Palowsky filed with the court in another lawsuit he is pursuing against his former business partner, Brandon Cork, and others. In Palowsky v. Campbell, the businessman also accused five judges of covering up Campbell’s activities.

Those activities began while Rambo was presiding over Stanley R. Palowsky III v. W. Brandon Cork and others. Campbell clerked for Rambo at that time. Palowsky’s attorneys, Joe Ward of Covington and Sedric Banks of Monroe, claimed their pleadings with the court were coming up missing in Palowsky v. Cork.

These allegations and many more were the focus of Palowsky v. Campbell, but several rulings by ad hoc Judge Jerry Barbera boxed in Palowsky’s lawsuit and ultimately led to its dismissal. Barbera is a retired district court judge from Thibodeaux. He was appointed as ad hoc judge in an order signed by state Supreme Court Justice Marcus Clark, for whom Campbell clerked while Clark served on the district court bench.

Ouachita Court Coverup Update

05/25/2016

District Attorney Jerry Jones’ actions cripple court probe

By Zach Parker and Johnny Gunter

Inquiries by The Ouachita Citizen into Fourth Judicial District Attorney Jerry Jones’ involvement in an investigation of Fourth Judicial District Court show the district attorney offered a false account of his communications with investigators, filed misleading court documents and did not refer this newspaper’s criminal complaint against the court to authorities involved in the investigation.

Those activities formed part of Jones’ efforts to downplay the investigation into possible wrongdoing at the court as well as his involvement in the probe.

The investigation stemmed from allegations that law clerk Allyson Campbell committed payroll fraud and destroyed or concealed court records. Those accusations also are the focus of separate lawsuits, one filed in district court by Monroe businessman Stanley R. Palowsky III and the other in federal court filed by Fourth Judicial District Court Judge Sharon Marchman.

Payroll Fraud Evidence in New Ouachita Court Filing

05/16/2016

An amended lawsuit by Fourth Judicial (Ouachita, Morehouse Parishes) District Court Judge Sharon Marchman against several fellow judges in that district cites evidence of payroll fraud by court clerk Allyson Campbell.

The exhibit attached to the suit indicates that on several occasions, Campbell’s timecards showed hours worked while she was not at her workplace. Court employees have electronic security devices that open secured doors in the building. On the dates in question, Campbell’s device showed no activity, but the timecards record hours worked.

Two of the district Judges, Wilson Rambo and Fred Amman, approved the timecards, the amended suit alleges.

See here the document.

The lawsuit alleges that the named defendants conspired to cover up the payroll fraud, and tried to damage Marchmann’s reputation for calling attention to the situation.

From the document:

As shown in the summary, on seven different days Defendant Campbell reported that she had worked seven hours even though the key fob reports and video footage showed that she had not entered the courthouse on any of those days. Law enforcement officials have since interviewed Defendant Campbell and Defendant Judge Sharp, and they both misrepresented the facts concerning Campbell’s attendance at work.


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