You haven’t seen anything yet

Last updated: June 23. 2014 4:03PM - 440 Views
Ron Gregory ronjgregory@gmail.com



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Well, “next week” has come and gone.


Several of those who love to hate former Mingo County Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury assured me and anyone who was within earshot that “you haven’t seen anything yet.” They said that on the day when Thornsbury, one of Team Mingo’s legal counsel, was sentenced to 50 months in prison during a hearing in Charleston federal court.


Most of those talking also knowingly assured those who listened that he or she had “talked” to a reliable source who said, “it’s all coming down next week.” If “it” came down, I missed “it.” If “it” happened last week, apparently the U.S. attorney and his marshals are keeping “it” from us.


Although I don’t claim to understand the thoughts of federal law enforcement agents, there is one thing I DO know: these fellows don’t run around talking about who they are about to arrest. Can you imagine two marshals sitting in McDonald’s and saying, “Well, I guess we’re going to unseal that indictment and serve John Doe from Kokomo next week”? For heaven’s sake. It doesn’t even happen that way in the movies.


My continued belief is that NOBODY outside law enforcement officials knows anything about where any investigation is going. Some can hope that half of the Logan and Mingo County courthouses is about to be arrested. I guarantee you they have no legitimate evidence, however.


* * * * * *


Perhaps I should walk in the Logan County courthouse and ask all elected officials if they have received “target” letters from the feds. THAT would get the answer.


* * * * * *


What’s behind the state legislative leadership deciding not to hold interim sessions in July? And then those fine folks are going to Bridgeport for August interims. As if it isn’t clear enough that North Central West Virginia is running the state, this should confirm it for one and all.


Perhaps one should point out that northern locales lost out when Mountain State voters selected their state capital years ago. It’s supposed to be in Charleston, Speaker Miley.


* * * * * *


The appointment of Susan Perry as “temporary” Mingo family court judge begs the question: what, exactly, does Governor Earl Ray Tomblin consider “temporary”? You may recall that it took the governor much longer than the 30 days he is allowed by law to appoint Mingo’s replacement circuit judge for Thornsbury. In fact, His Excellency clearly waited until after the Democrat primary to appoint anyone since picking someone before would have required … gasp … Tomblin to actually make a decision.


Despite the fact that it is Tomblin’s administration that ran Perry from her former home at the Division of Health and Human Resources, I would not be surprised to see her remain in the temporary job until the election. Then, first of all, Tomblin would again not have to make a selection on his own. And, the family court judge position would likely pacify Logan Circuit Judge Roger Perry, Susan Perry’s husband.


Tomblin and Perry had been political allies (oh, wait a minute, judges can’t involve themselves in partisan politics. What am I talking about?) until shortly before Susan Perry was terminated at DHHR. By leaving her in the job, the governor might repair his friendship with the judge.


* * * * * *


Surprisingly, there has been no movement in the case of Logan High head boys basketball Coach Mark Hatcher. Justice, it seems, either does not run swiftly or at all in Logan County.


After the phantom hearing where the press was shut out weeks ago, there has been no order, no hearing dates, nothing set in the Hatcher matter.


Hatcher is, of course, charged with battery regarding an altercation during a Logan ball game in Chapmanville.


In his case, the stepson of Logan Circuit Judge Eric O’Briant does not have to worry about “double jeopardy.” It seems he will never endure “single jeopardy.”


* * * * * *


Fans of Mingo Prosecutor Teresa Maynard have said on social media that I accused their heroine of “doing nothing” while she was ”prosecuting a murder case.” What I actually said is that Maynard, a Team Mingo partisan, has done nothing with allegations contained in federal informations and motions that Mingo officials have violated state laws. Since Maynard cannot return media calls, she may be unaware that the informations by U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin have been pretty specific about the allegations.


* * * * * *


The minister from Van who prayed on public property at a public event last week thanked God that the organizers of the Coal Festival included the praying in their opening ceremony. If we had all been asked to stand, point toward Mecca and invoke Mohammad, I wonder if the preacher would have been as grateful — and open-minded?


* * * * * *


Your comments, story ideas, rumors and confirmation of federal officials giving you the “inside scoop” are always welcome. Email at the address listed or call my cell, 304-533-5185.

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