Editor’s Note: The US Constitution appears to be banned down at the Cleveland County Law Enforcement Center (the Courthouse) like the Bible is banned at Cleveland County Schools. Several reports from trusted sources, as well as Public Documents tell the tale. The Sheriff’s Office, the District Attorney’s Office and the Cleveland County Schools as well as Cleveland Community College all have major issues dealing with crime and who gets prosecuted and who doesn’t. Read on!!
It is only Thursday and three Sheriff’s Deputies are gone from the already understaffed Sheriff’s Office just this week. Two officers resign and one was fired. The details are troubling.
A male deputy with over 15 years at the Sheriff’s Office resigned. Maybe a forced resignation related to some “fire-able” offense? Who can tell these days, but citizens should expect county agencies to fire those that need to be fired so they don’t wind up doing the same thing over and over again? Like CCS female school teachers caught having sex with male students and the School Board allowing her to resign, thus enabling her to get a teaching job at another school and do the same thing again. Wake up Cleveland County, I am talking about YOU!!
A female Deputy in “narcotics” also resigned. Another male deputy was fired. This firing is the major “rub” in this instance.
Over the weekend a Cleveland County Sheriff’s Deputy was arrested because of an allegation of domestic violence. The deputy was accused of beating up on his girlfriend, arrested and taken to the Gaston County Jail this past Sunday. The deputy was jailed overnight because of new laws that say, in alleged domestic violence situations, the alleged perpetrator has to remain in jail until released by a judge. This has spawned widespread abuse as a woman can allege domestic violence on Friday afternoon after Five O’clock, have her male partner arrested and know that he will be in jail until Monday Morning. Giving her a full weekend to clean out his house without fear of interference. The new laws also allow judges to take the man’s guns away from him as a condition of release and maybe permanently if he is convicted. On the other hand, the legal system in the USA includes a “presumption of innocence until proven guilty.” Or it used to.
So, what should Sheriff Alan Norman do in this situation? Without fully knowing any other facts of the matter, many at the Sheriff’s Office are said to believe that Sheriff Norman should have put the deputy on some kind of administrative leave until the deputy had his day in court. If convicted, firing would have been in order. If acquitted, reinstatement would have been in order. Sheriff Norman, according to some reports fired the deputy immediately. Justly or unjustly is now a matter of opinion. Department morale is another thing that Sheriff Norman will just have to deal with. But the department morale is reportedly low anyway, as well as the low retention of trained SPD personnel.
Other reports indicate the Shelby Police Department, under Police Chief Jeff Ledford, has more tolerance for domestic violence situations with his officers. One report was that Ledford hired a former officer back onto the force who had a history of domestic violence. We would certainly welcome a response from Chief Ledford about that situation. As well as a response regarding Chief Ledford’s WBTV 3 interview today making excuses for t the DA taking so long (three years) bringing the alleged “Cop-Killer” accused of Murder in the death of SPD Officer Tim Brackeen to trial. Chief Ledford stated that he would be attending as much of the murder trial as he could to support the (Brackeen) family. It is likely that members of the accused murderer’s family will be there to support their family too. I also plan to attend that murder trial as much as I can. I will be in support of “Justice,” what-ever the result of that trial might be. Murder vs. self-defense appears to be the overriding question that the Catawba County jury will decide. I am convinced that the timing of this trial overlapping the Shelby Mayor and certain Shelby City Council offices election is NOT a coincidence. I expect to see a lot of “politicking” twisting and turning the local news media will put on this trial in hope of selling more political advertisements. As well as likely plenty of cover-ups for the stories that have already been told. Folks, stay tuned for that. And, ask Chief Ledford, The Shelby Mayor and City Council about what they are doing about all the “gang” activity in Shelby. Murders and other violent crimes and all. You know? The stuff that doesn’t get talked about much.
As for the citizens of Cleveland County, the high crime rate and the reports of murders and high crimes almost every day are a major concern. The Sheriff and the County Commissioners ought to get together and identify problems, such as lower pay for Cleveland County Sheriff’s Department personnel relative to surrounding counties, and find solutions. One solution that I see is the Commissioners and ALL County agencies ought to cut down on their “tax and spend” mentality. Budget appropriately and with valid priorities. Cut out waste and watch the financial problems just fade away. Probably relatively quickly. But waste from county agencies are most often bigger profits for those sucked up to those agencies. Cutting waste will certainly have some “Fat-Cats” bawling and squalling.
Then, we have the situations at Cleveland Community College as well as Crest High School where statements on “social media” were “interpreted” by certain folks to be “communicated threats.” And people were arrested. Even a 16-year-old student from Crest High School. Arrested with the intention of full prosecution by the Cleveland County District Attorney’s Office.
In both these situations, the Cleveland County Sheriff’s Department made arrests and the District Attorney says they will prosecute. Yet, in another situation a prominent Shelby Attorney, in front of two Cleveland County Sheriff’s Deputies, threatened to “KILL” a neighbor over a right of way access dispute. In this situation, the Deputies threatened to arrest the attorney, yet when they “radioed” in to the Sheriff’s Department, they were apparently told to stand down and make the neighbor go to court over access to his property. Despite the neighbor already having obtained from the Courts a Memorandum of Settlement which already gave the neighbor a right of way access to his property,
So, in this situation, the Sheriff’s Department and (apparently) the District Attorney’s Office have refused to carry out their legal and sworn duties to the citizens of Cleveland County in a clear deference to the prominent Shelby Attorney.
Now, consider this: The Equal Protection Clause is a clause within the text of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. The clause, which took effect in 1868, provides “nor shall any State […] deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws”.
Also consider that “Selective Prosecution” is well settled law that if one person is prosecuted for the violation of a particular law, then every person accused with the violation of that law must be prosecuted. The inverse of that is, if any person is NOT prosecuted for the violation of a certain law, then every person that is prosecuted for the violation of that law can claim a !4th Amendment defense and may be acquitted.
This means the persons who were alleged to communicate threats of violence at Cleveland Community College and Crest High School can ultimately get off scot-free from prosecution because the prominent Shelby Attorney, O. Max Gardner, III was not prosecuted for repeatedly Communicating threats to kill his neighbor in a property right of way dispute.
Note that it is well settled law that a person owning “land-locked” property who historically have crossed other property to access his own property, shall be legally entitled to continue his access to his property.
Folks, I have attached the Cleveland County Sheriff’s Department ‘Event Report” describing Gardner’s recent (September 21, 2019) threats to kill his neighboring property owner as well as the Memorandum of Settlement. Do you believe that potential “Terrorists” who threaten to blow up Cleveland Community College and threaten to kill students at Crest High School should be able to escape prosecution and punishment just because the Sheriff and the lazy District Attorney’s Office refuse to prosecute Max Gardner, or anybody else, for communicating threats as clearly described in the attached Event Report??
That is a question that each and every citizen and voter in Cleveland County must decide for themselves. A majority of County Commissioners and School Board members are up for election in 2020. The Sheriff and District Attorney are up for Election in 2022. If I were to say, “vote to kill” I might find myself in jail too. Has it come to that in Cleveland County?? You decide. I just write and publish what I see and hear.Max Gardner Communicating Threats Document