I may have bitten off more than I can chew in a single request: That the grand jury be reformed so that it might hear my complaint about warrantless arrests in Hamilton County, which are generally forbidden, with strict exceptions, but is current practice here and across the state.
Local cops and deputies, like those across the state, enjoy the easy ways of what one court ruling terms “constabulary latitudinarianism.” A better way of putting it: Cops and low-level courts have deconstructed the law that grants exceptions to the constitutional ban on warrantless arrests.
The custom helps cops enforce the Jim Crow-style misuse of the state transportation law (traffic stops) against African-Americans, the poor and other vulnerable groups. It is a giant root for an overspreading Baobab tree of state government that empowers locals and operates as a depradation upon the people.
Earlier communication with Jimmy Anderson, one of two foremen, was renewed Monday when I entered the grand jury room, sat down in a chair and hand-wrote a request demanding to exercise my right to address the grand jury as one who has knowledge of commission of a crime.
Mr. Anderson, a city officer said, was in the grand jury room, hearing testimony from a highway patrolman and others. He would be there until lunch, he said. So I sat and wrote my demand for an audience. (Will modify request later to a request to be subpoenaed.)
Powerful law lets people act
It is exciting to think that Tennesseans are able to check government, official and police abuse by going to the grand jury themselves.
“Any person having knowledge or proof of the commission of a public offense triable or indictable in the county may testify before the grand jury,” the law says at Tenn. Code Ann. 40-12-104. Application to testify by person having knowledge of commission of offense.
I have a right to meet the foreman and two members of the grand jury of my choosing, and give my knowledge “relating to misconduct involving public officials and employees” activities “relating to racketeer influenced and corrupt organizations” and, finally, activities “relating to interference with government operations.”
My research into the law that grants 11 grounds for arrest by officer without a warrant indicates that despite clear direction by the courts of appeal, law enforcement agencies and lower level courts (up to county criminal courts) ignore the intent of the law and undisputed language in it.
But because the abuse of the people arrested without warrant is so much a favor to government and its employees, it has a strong constituency among those who work for the state and its agencies, whether county or city. So I request a grand jury in pure form, undiluted by state influence, state-centered culture and police-oriented presuppositions.
My request look near and far.
It looks into the distance for a review of the warrantless arrest practice. And also ultra vires enforcement of Title 55, the freight statute upon people not involved in freight.
But before I can get to that point, I request of Mr. Anderson that the grand jury vote a foreman to whom I might make my appeal, one who is randomly selected and put into the grand jury, with the foreman’s election either at the hand of other members — or at the hand of the judges — as in the federal system.
The system of naming the grand jury foremen in Tennessee is soundly unconstitutional. I don’t think my allegations will get a fair hearing in an unconstitutionally created grand jury.
Because the foreman is named by the county criminal court judges from the people at large and not from the randomly selected body of grand jury members, the grand jury system is hopelessly broken and strongly at odds with our Christian and common law heritage as Americans.
The foreman is named from the people at large by the judges. That would be Tom Greenholtz, Don Poole and Barry Steelman in Hamilton County.
The grand jury foreman is a judicial favorite, and he or she is chosen for myriad reasons, causes and purposes. The foreman does not come from the body of the grand jurors. He comes from outside — outside the random selection process by which lawful grand jurors are named. It is a system more than 100 years old that operates to invite bias and discrimination and to deny, effectively, due process rights of the accused.
Mind you — the system is familiar. It’s legal. It appears not to have been challenged. All shoul be OK — right?
It could be you facing indictment
That accused could be me. It could be a son someday. A friend. A fellow church member. A poor soul at the end of my street who is poor and black. Someone who don’t speak English too good. I believe the promises of a republican form of representative government, and in the power of the grand jury to right wrongs and investigate abuse by government.
My goal is to further my main project — the act by city and county to obey the law and to respect the rights of the people. Those rights start in my labors on the roadways, the right to travel, the right to people to be free from police harassment under the misused state and federal transportation law. As I say, the warrantless arrest abuse is a major root that supports this shifty practice of human trafficking along the highways and boulevards across the state.
To get these matters fairly heard, however, by the grand jury, I believe I should focus the problem of the unrepresentative and unresponsive grand jury. These three problems are no doubt a lifetime of work for any one person, much less three major problems awaiting reform — all in view on this website and on my radio show.
Tennessee is ignoring two supreme court cases that require the reform I have suggested here. One of the cases is a Tennessee case. Both are about grand juries, and declare that for a grand jury to be just and proper, the foreman cannot be chosen by any discriminatory process.
The naming by judges of the foreman is discriminatory. It’s not discriminatory when the judge names the foreman from among the body of randomly selected grand jury. But it is discriminatory when judges pick the foreman from the great body of the population by their own selective process. Judges’ naming foremen injects bias into the system. It injects favoritism, bias and particular interest into the process.
The two cases are Hobby v. U.S. and Rose v. Mitchell. I am reading these cases closely to see how they support my contention. And there will be a good bit of other reading necessary to determine how to assert my right to be heard by a proper grand jury.