Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Did the DA Lie?/Still Missing

Yes, this is a strange case, and we would love to have our readers' input:

First, we usually read the Athens News Courier; you might be surprised at how many from Rogersville are regularly arrested in the fair city of Athens. Recently we read an interesting article about a volunteer firefighter who was on the sex offender registry. It seems he participated in fighting two fires which were close to schools and thus committed a crime. Regular readers know how we feel about those who abuse women and children, especially sexually, but in the case of a fire, wouldn’t we all be happy with any assistance we could get?

Now it gets interesting. We read an article about the firefighter in PNS, and it seems his crime was Second Degree Rape committed with a 15 year old girl when he was 23. The moral here is not to have sex with someone you don’t know well. Yet this man, now 54, stupid as he may have been at the age of 23, is not an ogre. Hadn’t the article in the News Courier depicted him otherwise?

We checked back and found that the Limestone District Attorney’s office had informed the reporter that the man had committed First Degree Rape, attacking a 17 year old girl. Which tale was correct?

We then checked the ALEA records and found that the man was indeed charged with and convicted of only Second Degree Rape. So why did the Limestone district attorney present the story as something more sinister? Somehow the sad case of Joel Moyers comes to mind…



There are still three people from Lauderdale County unaccounted for in the past month, two of them teenagers. The third is 51 year-old Robert DeShawn Childers. After four weeks, we may assume it reasonable to discard “just wanting to spend some time alone” as one possible reason for his leaving his home in northern Lauderdale County.

Unfortunately, foul play now seems the most likely reason for his going missing. If you know anything at all, no matter how small, please call the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department. Shawn may never return to his family, but we can still make sure he receives justice.


Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Halloween, Clowns, & Christmas Parades

Halloween, Clowns & Christmas Parades
By: The Midnight Rider

Halloween is fast approaching. Here are some aspects to remember on the upcoming date. Halloween can be fun for kids and adults alike. Don’t do anything stupid. If you do something stupid and go to jail, is that how you want to remembered when someone posts it on Facebook? You know they will. Be safe
The Rider has already told you in a previous article that this Clown stuff is getting out of hand. The latest thing going around on Facebook is that the “Clowns are going to do a Purge on Halloween.” Yeah, ok. You going to be purging in some good ole boy’s yard and he is going to purge your ass with a shotgun.

Please, enough with the clown stuff.
Christmas Parades
Now, we are getting to the part of the Holidays that the Rider likes. Christmas. I just read that the City of Sheffield is holding their Christmas Parade December 1, 2016. What? That’s not a Christmas Parade. That is a Thanksgiving Parade. The Christmas Parade should be closer to, well, Christmas. I don’t understand this decision.

I am and always will be, the Midnight Rider.


Monday, October 17, 2016

An Interesting Lawsuit/Gale Satchell

From Austin Burdick:

Bessemer, Alabama- October 18, 2016- A hearing has been set for October 26, 2016 at 3:00 PM in the Birmingham Federal District Court in the case of Burdick vs. Kennedy et al.

Bessemer attorney, Austin Burdick, filed a lawsuit against five US Supreme Court Justices after their ruling in OBERGEFELL v. Hodges, which legalized same sex marriage. The lawsuit does not the issue of gay marriage; rather, it asserts that the defendants, JUSTICE ANTHONY M. KENNEDY, JUSTICE STEPHEN G. BREYER, JUSTICE RUTH BADER GINSBURG, JUSTICE SONIA SOTOMAYOR, and JUSTICE ELENA KAGAN abandoned the Constitution and violated their oath of office.

Burdick states in his lawsuit that the US Supreme Court’s opinion includes language that departs from all prior precedent and rewrites the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution while redefing the terms “freedom” and “liberty”. An amendment that has always acted as a limitation on government action is now said to be the basis for granting the government power to interfere in fundamental rights at a most intimate and personal level. This ruling sets aside nearly 150 years of protection and opens a Pandora’s box for court’s to expand government infringement into the lives and liberties of individuals in a multitude of other cases..Burdick hopes, that through his lawsuit, he can convince the Federal Court to issue a ruling that will uphold the US Constitution and limit government overreach.

The Federal Court in Birmingham, Alabama will hear oral arguments at the October 26, 2016 at 3:00 to determine whether or not to dismiss the case.

Austin Burdick is a private attorney whose office is located in Bessemer Alabama. The practice specializes in general law with a primary focus on the protection of basic constitutional rights of United States citizens previously protected by the 14thAmendment.

For further information or to arrange an interview:

Contact: Austin Burdick, Burdick Law Firm

Phone: 205.565.8909





We see that Gale Satchell has been cleared in the ethics charges brought against her before the primary. Now Ms. Satchell should be unencumbered in her leadership of Colbert County schools. We wish her the best!


Sunday, October 16, 2016

Say Yes to Amendment Four!

In three weeks we’ll be voting for more than our next (gasp) president. We’ll be voting on 14 new amendments to our ridiculously long state constitution. We won’t try to make a recommendation on all of them, but Number 4 is a winner.

Proposed amendment four allows for more home rule for our counties. In other words, our county commissioners will be allowed more freedom on making laws that apply to our individual counties. They will also have less ability to blame others when things go wrong. This is a good thing. It’s always more efficient to curse someone in our own county than having to e-mail Montgomery.



Kindness or tolerance? We were speaking with our favorite advisor earlier today; he claims he’s not that kind, but merely tolerant. Both are good qualities that so many of us lack. Yes, you may inject our name here.

We do have to ask where tolerance should end? Is our judicial system too lenient? Perhaps it’s too hard? We think the answer depends mainly on the perp’s attorney…a good one could get Jack the Ripper off, while an ineffective one couldn’t save Mother Teresa.

Soon Lauderdale County will undergo judicial changes. It should be interesting…


Saturday, October 15, 2016

Who Bails These People Out?/New DV Law?

Jails are crowded; we understand that. What we can’t understand is how some criminals make bail over and over. No, we’re not even talking about the small time burglar who regularly gets arrested once a month until a judge grows weary of him and sends him South. We’re speaking of those who can easily be classified as dangerous.

We see that Skyler Burgess has been arrested in Colbert County for failing to appear at a court date. If you’re not familiar with Burgess, she makes Lindsey Lohan look like Pollyanna.

Does this woman, with four children the state supports, have the money for bail? We understand she’s entitled to an attorney even if her guilt is a given, but bail? Why call her “Armed and Dangerous,” then allow her out in the general public?

Is there a flip side? She’s probably so psycho that no jail wants the responsibility. We can understand that also. If she harms another inmate, who will be sued? The answer is the state, aka the taxpayers.

Obviously there are no easy answers. Yet we’re betting the public feels safer with her locked away.



We’ve always taken the position that the state too easily enacts new laws for every occasion. We still feel that way, but have a suggestion for a law we feel is needed in this state.

For many years, a certain number of misdemeanor DUIs qualify one for a felony. How about a similar law for Domestic Violence arrests? Sure, first degree Domestic Violence is now a felony in Alabama, but we see those like Ryan Kent Pollard who go to jail over and over for days at a time, but like Skyler Burgess, seem to return to freedom to offend again—read: beat up some other innocent female.

We welcome input and ideas on how best to have this law enacted.


Friday, October 14, 2016

What to do if Trump Attacks?

You’re a female sitting next to a famous man on a first class air flight when he begins to kiss and fondle you. Do you:

A. Sit there and do nothing…for over 35 years?

B. Simultaneously hit him with whatever you have at your disposal and call a flight attendant?

C. Sell the story to a tabloid?

D. Both B & C?

If there is any doubt, the answer is “D.”



While we can’t speak for all who blog here, we don’t support Trump…or Hillary. Let’s face it, our country is in dire straits, and Canada, snow and all, is looking good to us.

However, Trump for all his faults is not the Anti-Christ. Nor is Hillary. They both have enough faults to debate without making any up.


Repeal the 19th Amendment? It’s become something of a satirical hash tag on Twitter, but still only satire for most. We’ve read of a few who said they would give up their vote forever if they could be sure Trump would win.

We also read of those who say they can turn lead into gold and water into gasoline. These people are not exactly hitting on all cylinders.


The TD has just published several articles on the high number of children killed by firearms, especially in the South. If local district attorneys want to charge anyone in these deaths, shouldn’t it be the parents/guardians who leave these weapons unattended—or more importantly, their children unattended?


Thursday, October 13, 2016

Whitfield Case Postponed/Theft Indictment Delayed

If you're not familiar with the Colbert County manslaughter indictment against the Whitfields, you may catch up here:

The case was originally scheduled for October 4th, but autopsy results have been delayed. There is some speculation this case may now be placed on a back burner and eventually disappear. We'll post any new dates/info as we receive it.



A reader has asked us how many times a district attorney may present a case in order to obtain a grand jury indictment. We're throwing that question out to our legal eagle friends; we can say the most we are aware of is three, but that does not mean there is a limit.

That brings us to the theft case against some members of a local volunteer fire department. Apparently the district attorney's office was unable to secure an indictment the first time it was presented. A reader has asked if it will be presented again.

Again we're awaiting some inside information. We can say that some insurance companies will demand prosecution even if the money is repaid. 


What's a common type of case that doesn't always bring an automatic indictment? Various types of sexual assault, especially those involving an adult victim. 

And we wonder why Donald Trump and Bill Clinton always get off so easy?