Discussion in 'Local Government and Groups' started by John G, Dec 23, 2015.
Doesn't mention WHO is representing the accused...
This is a classic example of public outcry making a difference, not just on SOWAL but across the community. This is why freedom of speech is so important and the only real option unless you are foolish or stupid enough to take the law in your own hands. Public outcry pushed our elected officials to do the right thing even if they were reluctant to do so. We must do this with more issues that affect us and our everyday life, unfortunately if your issue has to do with the county government you will only be given 3 minutes to do so by the BCC. This is their way of implementing a gag policy on citizen concerns. Think of a serious issue and then stand in front of the mirror with a timer and see if you can present it and explain your issue in three minutes. I have seen developers given hours to present their side to the BCC while the affected property owners are given 3 minutes to defend it. I call this the Emfeld rule and now it can be known as the Comander rule. The BCC chair has the ability to let people speak as long as they need, but they refuse to do so. As long as a citizen stays on point, they should be allowed as long as they need to present their concerns. The right to address grievances before government should be considered sacred and not hampered or restricted by local policy. Watch a BCC meeting tape and see how many times a lawyer is told they are out of time, almost never. But if your an average citizen you be told to have a seat. At least it was 5 minutes before, Emfeld and Comander have cut it to three. Pretty soon you will only be allowed to stand up and say "I object" just to say they let you speak. Cherish and guard your freedoms carefully or one day you will wake up and have none. These rights were granted to us and paid for with the blood of our forefathers, don't let apathy and silence take what was paid for so dearly. My bill was paid for by my great uncles on Iwo Jima and in North Africa and I don't take those rights they gave me lightly as they both paid the ultimate sacrifice. At age 17 and 20 they both knew why and what they were fighting for. I never met them, but I proudly display their pictures in my house. To those that spoke up on this issue, I applaud you!
The involvement of the community is always a good thing and it is good to see that people can make a difference. But it is also fair to say that so far the system has worked and hopefully the system will produce justice. While most of the drama could have been avoided by an arrest being made at the scene as is both legal and appropriate, how it has played out so far is also legal and appropriate. Since an arrest was not made at the time of the incident, there is nothing wrong with taking a little time to make sure everything is correct. And just because law enforcement/state attorneys sign off on a warrant does not mean a judge does not have the absolute right to sign or not. As far as bail, you are innocent until proven guilty in the eyes of the law and you have a right to a reasonable bail. Pretrial incarceration is not meant as punishment.
The system is slow but is working and lets see where it leads.
Sorry Danny, I don't believe anything would have come of it unless the public had spoken out. Look thru past threads on public issues and you will see that Walton County has a poor track record of doing the right thing. Don't get me wrong, I agree that he is innocent until proven guilty by a Jury or Judge, but really Danny as a former police officer how many times have you taken somebody to jail for DUI that could hardly stand up. Their blood alcohol was probably off the chart above .08 but technically they were innocent until convicted of DUI. Didn't you still remove them from the highway even though they hadn't been convicted yet? When the sheriff arrived and someone was laying there with a broken jaw, they should have been taken into custody immediately. THEN the system should have been allowed to determine if a felony had been committed or not. I personally don't think a picture of you in an orange jumpsuit should be released to the public until after the conviction, then by all means you can print it on Christmas cards as far as I'm concerned. Being charged for an alleged crime is not a punishment in my opinion, but being put on display in an orange jump suit before conviction surely is.(it will never be removed from social media) His picture should have only been released in regular clothes. I've seen domestic violence offenders taken to jail over scratches and this guy went home after sucker punching a pastor and sending him to surgery. Handcuffs and the ride of shame in the patrol car were surely appropriate. Somebody was on this guys side from the get go in my opinion and notice I've had little to say about this until the arrest was made.
There is no more powerful instrument than this forum. I've seen it and heard it time and time again. Not everyone reads it but everyone hears about it. And for every person posting here there are a thousand more simply reading who don't post. Thank you SoWal.com.
I agree that it could have been handled differently at the time. I am guessing the suspect fled the scene and the deputy was unable to locate him. So he turned in a report and submitted a warrant to the State Attorney. That is standard procedure. Once the SA signed off they sent the warrant to the judge for review which is also standard procedure. The judge in his discretion decided to hold off on signing it. It sounds like there was not a signed affidavit of complaint. Those are not necessary in felony cases but judges usually like to have them if possible. So they made sure the victim wished to proceed and the judge signed the warrant. Bail was set per standard procedure and the arrest was made. So lets see how things proceed from here. If this had been my case I would not have been happy about the delay and I would not have been happy the suspect did not have to take the ride in the back seat but that doesn't mean anyone did anything wrong. Sometimes things just go this way. It is good to see the community get involved and show interest and concern about what happens around them.
Patriot Games is 110% correct.
Danny, while you make some good points and are factual in the legal system process, its time to stop defending the sheriff's administration and the mistake they made in handling this case.
Without SoWal and the calls to Sheriff Mike by the community, this would have not happened yesterday.
Go back and look at the Stephen Ruder DUI case. Another example of a mistake on the part of sheriff's administration. He would NEVER been charged if not for public outcry.
None of us are perfect, we all make mistakes. The sheriff's administration has made mistakes under Adkinson, but they are too arrogant to admit when they do.
When is the last time they have simply said; we made a mistake and are taking the appropriate steps to correct it?
By the way, who the accused's Attorney?
It has to be either Steve Dallas or Lionel Hutz.
John G I am not defending anyone. But being fair is important to me whether I agree or not. And I think it is important for everyone to understand the process.
Let's also hope he gets a fair trial. Even though the tar is hot and the feathers are being plucked, I still want this man treated fairly in every step of the process. There could be some surprising facts about his behavior none of us are aware of.
Heard today Torey and his dogs had also been causing some problems in over in Bayside Subdivision.
Surprisingly (to me), this epic failure by The Sheriff's Administration, under Adkinson, as well as Judge, D. Green, has made the front page of my favorite fish wrapper, the Walton Sun.
While normally this free rag of paper sits decaying on neighborhood drive ways and clogging storm drains, this Front Page story may put it back into favor with those that don't want the usual unicorns and rainbows B.S.
From what is reported, neighbors are afraid to walk their dogs in the Bayside Community. Nice, fear to go out and walk a dog...
Perhaps the fifedom of the Sheriff can use its Animal Control Division to look into these issues and serve the community as opposed to making excuses.
This entire situation is simply ridiculous and the quote in a previous article should have been; "there was so much B.S. flying...", not about the "fur flying" as stated by our sheriff...
Let your PIO comment next time your office steps in the dog poop Sheriff...
Latest News on the attack. Pastor out of commission following attack
Just thought I’d give an update on Father Tom’s condition and how he is doing. Over the last two Sundays he has been present at mass; unfortunately due to the fact that his speech is limited he was unable to totally participate in the celebration only to help the visiting priest say mass.
The Miramar Beach Community and members of Resurrection Catholic Church have been devastated to say the least. Father Tom and Bridget’s his Golden Labrador Retriever are local icons in the community. Everyone enjoys visiting with Bridget while Father Tom walks her daily. I’ve always noticed that anyone in the Miramar Beach area has no problem talking with Father Tom and receiving counseling regardless of their religious faith.
Father Tom thanked the people at church today for their ongoing prayers he looks forward to the day where he can have a steak dinner. He has lost 25 pounds due to this ordeal and would not recommend this kind of diet to anyone. He is in good spirits looking for the day that has jaw is un-wired. Again please keep him in your prayers for a speedy recovery.
This went to court yesterday for a motion to dismiss. First of all, I'm an atheist; zero bias either way.
It started out with testimony from Mr. Geile, then Father Tom's friend, then Father Tom, then Mrs. Geile. From the testimony I heard, I do not see how Mr. Geile determined that Father Tom was a threat to him. The only thing Mr. Geile described as a "threat" was that Father Tom had pointed at him, while yelling at him. Those were not Mr. Geiles words. Mr. Geile stated that "Father Tom was advancing toward him with his arm extended". The other testimony appeared to confirm that Father Tom was merely pointing at Mr. Geile; yelling at him "that he needs to get his dogs under control". Father Tom said that he was in fear that he may be watching his dog get killed right in front of him, so that is why voices were elevated.
Mr. Geile & Mrs. Geile tried, but failed (in my opinion) to paint a picture that either Father Tom, or his friend were forcefully restraining Mrs. Geile on the ground. Mr. Geiles testimony was calm & cool. However, there were a couple of outbursts during Geiles testimony because some people felt that what Mr. Geiles was saying to be outright false. Father Tom was pretty calm during testimony as well, but it was clear he was very distressed about having to talk about this incident. As Tom described what was happening to his dog, then him; I became pretty emotional myself. What made matters worse, was that Mr Geiles attorney, Clay Adkinson; was interrogating Father Tom as if he were a hostile witness - which was not even remotely the case. Father Tom did very well under that pressure, and maintained a straight forward accounting of his version of the story. Judge Wells, had to warn this attorney three times to tone it down, and even told him that if he needed to take a break to blow off some steam, that was an available option.
Mrs. Geiles testimony seemed to contradict Mr. Geiles in most instances. I could tell that the Judge was studying her very closely during her testimony. That, coupled with the behavior of the attorney, and the facts testified to; led to the ultimate denial of the motion to dismiss. Geiles attorney said he was going to appeal the decision, but I firmly believe nothing will come of it. The charges remain, and given the severity of the charge... Geiles will almost certainly have to take a plea deal in order to avoid jail time. Had this been a trial, and had I been a juror, I would have voted to convict from what I heard. Mr. Geiles does not really have a defense at this point, as he admitted in open court that he did in fact punch Father Tom.
I'd like to point out that during one of the breaks, I saw Father Tom in the hallway. Not knowing anything about me, he greeted me with a huge smile. He seemed to have an overwhelming aura of "just being a really nice person". So much, in fact... I felt the need to let him know how well he did in court, and to let him know that I was happy he & his dog were doing alright. For someone who has never been through a court preceding, he handled himself quite well. I think its horrible that a mans dog gets viciously attacked for no reason, then he gets viciously attacked for trying to help his dog.
Thanks for the blow by blow account of the case. Funny how you don't hear about it any more except for the last post (prior to yours) from Mosquito Control Commissioner McGee in January. No media coverage any more.
Funny how you also don't hear anything about the alleged Freeport Dog Fighting Case that WCSO had so much media press on. That case is going on two years and I hear its not going well.
Keep us posted.
Like father like son.
My wife and I met Father Tom last year. We were so impressed. He came across as such a gentle and friendly person. So sad to hear about this situation. We wish him the very best.
Separate names with a comma.