ONLY ON 3: Judge Lewis, attorneys ban media from Bar Association meeting discussing DA, Judge Jolly


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Submitted: Tue, 05/03/2011 - 2:49pm By:

BOLIVIA, NC (WWAY) — The Brunswick County Bar Association came together today to discuss District Attorney Jon David and the controversial StreetSafe program he would like to use.

David tried to set up a program in Brunswick County using StreetSafe. It works with young people who have had brushes with the law in their cars and SUV’s. However, Judge Jerry Jolly issued an administrative order stopping David from using the program, because he contends David was “running a scheme” by sending business to StreetSmart. The program director had given David’s campaign less than $250 last year.

When we tried attending the meeting, we were escorted out by a sheriff’s deputy and told it was “private meeting.” When we followed up, we were told that Brunswick County Judge Ola Lewis had requested security for the meeting to keep anyone from coming in.

We called Judge Lewis and reminded her that the Bar Association was meeting in a public building (the courthouse) and using tax-payer resources (sheriff’s deputies) to run security for the meeting, therefore it should be open to the media and public in general. She said they always had their meetings there, and even though it didn’t look good, said the meeting should be closed.

After the meeting, the Bar Association released a copy of a resolution it passed lauding Jolly “for his distinguished public service and his many valuable contributions to our local Judicial System.”

David has written Jolly a letter requesting he apologize for the language of his order.

County Attorney Huey Marshall, who also serves as the Bar Association’s Secretary/Treasurer, said the group has used the courthouse for its private meetings for years. He said private groups often use public facilities, including families having picnics in county parks. When asked if the Bar Association would reimburse the county for the use of a deputy, Marshall said he did not know about the deputy. He also said he does not know if the current county commissioners, who he conceded would need to give permission to use the courthouse for a private meeting, knew about the Bar Association’s private meetings there.

49 Comments

  • Sharon says:

    You are so funny-you say they are hard working and sworn to uphold the law-are you getting paid to be like them too? They make their own rules-they can get away with anything in this world and have been doing it for a VERY LONG TIME!! Unless you are in our shoes-you better get a reality check! I wish to God it was like television-I bet we would all hire the TV SHOWS–maybe even eat popcorn by the side of the road watching the SYSTEM FALL!! WWAY is not scared to report the stupid things that your so called hard working friends are doing. There are good ones there and everywhere but with money you could buy anyone to look the other way!

  • Bill White says:

    Well I have worked in and around the court system for the last twenty years as well. Most of my time has been in District 13, that is to say, before RC, Tyler and Rhone Sasser divided it into “a & b.” Perhaps you were not privy to nor did the “boys” include you in the numerous meetings. I speak of those that happen on the golf course or at the judges’ homes or on the telephone at 11 pm. It goes on. Believe you me, it happens. Justice is driven, tweaked and held hostage by a few white haired old men. The transition team seems to be some women also. The good old boys no longer wear pointed hoods but are clean cut, tie and dress wearing black and white thugs that you claim are “above reproach.”
    Is throwing a case ok?
    Is working the case behind the scenes so that attorneys know what is going to happen before they ever get into court ok?
    Is covering for a child molester ok?
    Is dividing a district so that one could create an office just to stay in power ok?
    I could say more but you may actually be true. Perhaps you were kept outside of the box. Open your eyes. But then again, you could be “one of them.”

  • elaine says:

    Ask me how I know he didn’t do this and then you turn around and make such a blantant statement as fact? How, pray tell, do you KNOW that? Such comments are inane and without foundation, so take them elsewhere until you can PROVE it. Or run for office yourself.

  • Patrick Henry says:

    Meeting in a public building, in secret, using public money for security.

    “She said they always had their meetings there, and even though it didn’t look good, said the meeting should be closed.”

    There you have it.

    Little people, don’t bother us with your petty gripes.

    We are the law. Just shut up and do what your told.

    Judges, lawyers, they all work for the same law firm:

    WE FLEECE’EM AND HOW

    If you have a problem, take it to the streets.

    Less court costs, no jail time, and you save all attorney fees.

    They govern themselves. What a joke.

    One final note.

    “County Attorney Huey Marshall, who also serves as the Bar Association’s Secretary/Treasurer, said the group has used the courthouse for its private meetings for years.”

    He should be arrested. He and his cohorts should have to reimburse the county for supplying him with private meeting space, the equivalent to the Hilton or Convention Center, and private security services provided by OUR DEPUTIES.

    These guys use our money, property, Deputies.

    If this policy doesn’t change, we should hold meetings of the

    International Association of Bad Asses and Motherf@*$rs in the public courtroom.

    If the BAR has used services for years, the amount will be substantial. I’m sure the County could use a BIG FAT CHECK from all the successful professional liars.

  • Guest2020 says:

    “Is working the case behind the scenes so that attorneys know what is going to happen before they ever get into court ok?”

    I cannot speak to all of the things you talk about, but this particular question you post speaks of a thing called case management, which is something that goes on all across the state. It is where the judge, the DA’s office and the attorneys meet to see if there is an amicable arrangement that can be made to mete out justice. This is a way that helps to free up time in the courts and this in turn cuts down the cost to the taxpayer.

  • sevenseas says:

    To the supporters of Jon David….how do you know it wasn’t payback, I’m not saying it was but it very well could have been, do you really think he would admit it if it was, this kind of stuff happens all the time and he’s no different than anyone else except he might (not saying he did) have been caught in his own little payback scheme…if any of you think Jon David really cares anything about anyone except himself and his career you’ve just fooling yourself!!

  • Guest-of-the-day says:

    “… and even though it didn’t look good, said the meeting should be closed.”

    This article should be saved for reference later on… like at election time.

    Remember people: We have DO a fair and equitable government.This kind of criminality is only permitted for one term of office. The Day of Judgment for these Judges will arrive soon enough.

  • PEONINAPEONPOND says:

    I agree whole heartedly. All about himself and wanting people to think that he’s God himself!
    And because of past political agendas, he does and will hold a grudge.

  • SMH says:

    Having been a part of the legal community in Brunswick County for over twelve years, I think it’s hilarious that so many people seem to think there are actually all kinds of shady and nefarious dealings going on. The judges, DAs and attorneys are, by and large, hard working men and women who believe in the system they are sworn to uphold, and just trying to make a living at the job they trained long and hard to do. They don’t have time for the kinds of shenanigans you seem to think they are up to. All of you who think there are back-door deals and sneaky pay-outs happening have been watching WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY too much television. This isn’t “Law and Order” people, it’s real life, and real people trying to do their real jobs.

    WWAY, your reporting is no better than a newspaper tabloid. “Blowing Smoke Up Judge Jolly’s Robe?????” TACKY and TASTELESS. Have a little integrity.

  • Guest757 says:

    The bottom line is that this program works and works VERY well. It has been used in other counties and not just New Hanover. It frees up the court system so they can do there jobs too.

    All this is is Jolly still upset that Rex is gone and so is the “Good Ole Boy” network.

    Lets see if I have this right,during the Presidental election change was supposed to be good. But not at local levels ???

    All I can say that if something has been proven to work and well, we should give it a try..

  • reggie says:

    wway is 100% right

  • LawDog says:

    Judge Lewis did NOT order anything! I was there. I, as a member of a private organization, told the media members to leave as it was a closed meeting. We did not use any sheriff for security. We did not use a room that would otherwise have been used during the same time frame. This is so amusing how some are trying to turn the tables away from the issues at hand. And think, you folks are the same people that elect our leaders. No wonder our country is in shambles…you actually believe the media like it’s gospel.

  • Scott Pickey says:

    Yet Lawdog – Judge Lewis herself and two sheriff’s deputies told us SHE DID!

    So we should believe YOU – a member of the Brunswick County Bar Association? You sure are making it difficult.

    Scott Pickey
    WWAY News Director

  • Ray Ray says:

    The Judge had no authority to order deputies, at the taxpayer’s expense, to act as men at arms at a private event. This just crossed over to a secret meeting and is another fraud placed upon the taxpayer’s purse. Shame on you Judge Lewis. I supported you prior to this sham.

  • Guest333 says:

    Nicely put.

  • Sharon says:

    Why do you watch WWAY news then? So funny!

  • Concerned Brunswick County Citizen says:

    Dear Mr. Pickey,

    You are a disgrace to your profession. It is truly a shame what WWAY has become. Instead of being a reputable news provider, they focus more on gossip and trash. If you are interested in actually reporting, take a look at how Judge Jolly has honorably served the 13th district for over 25 years. Take a look at all the good that Judge Jolly, the Brunswick County Bar AND the District Attorney’s office has done for the citizens of Brunswick County.

    It has become very clear that your only objective here is to stir up the pot in Brunswick County. Shame on you for suggesting that there are no private meetings in public buildings. That is absurd and borderline liable for suggesting such a thing. WWAY should take a serious look at the way you conduct yourself and manage your reporters. Try looking at the good things going on in Brunswick and stay clear of the slanderous reporting.

    A very concerned Brunswick County citizen

  • Guest Apu says:

    Just because a building is a public facility doesn’t automatically give you the right to attend, Scott. When someone rents out a public building, like a Civic Center, they, as temporary tenants, have every right to ask someone to leave. Furthermore, just because someone has deputies providing security, doesn’t give you the right to enter either. Many bars are considered private clubs. If they hire police officers to provide security, it doesn’t automatically mean the bar is open to the public. You need to learn a little more about the law before you respond on these boards and look ignorant.

    Many things that happen in the courthouse are off-limits to the public. When the judge meets with prosecutors and defense attorneys “in chambers,” they do not invite or welcome the general public or the media.

    Of course, you may want to ask if the Bar Association pays for these perks they are receiving in the form of meeting space and security. That seems like a key issue to me. Is this perk available to the general public?

  • Guest800000000 says:

    So, if I’m meeting with my attorney at the courthouse, the media should be able to televise our conversation because it is in a public facility? Should the media be able to put a camera in the DA’s office during their staff meeting because it is located in a public facility and the taxpayers pay their salaries? Try putting one in the DA’s office. Try putting a camera in the judges’ offices that are located in the public facility. I do not believe you will have a camera in there long. Isn’t the Golden Corral a public place?

  • Scott Pickey says:

    Guest800000000 – Thanks for leaving your comment.

    Should we be able to televise a conversation between you and your attorney? Of course not. That falls under attorney / client privilege.

    Should we be able to put a camera in the DA’s office? Not without the DA’s permission, no.

    Is the Golden Coral a public place? The answer is no again. The manager or owner has every right to turn someone away and not serve them. It is a private restaurant.

    But, when a private group uses a public facility at no charge to attempt to hold a secret meeting – then yes, I think we should be able to attend. The jury waiting room is not someone’s private office nor is it used on a regular basis for private conversations. It is a public room in a public building.

    sp

  • Scott Pickey says:

    Concerned Brunswick County Citizen – thank you for leaving your comment as well.

    I would like to ask though that you take a moment and please point out any and all examples of “gossip” and/or “slanderous” reporting.

    I believe you’ll find everything reported is backed up with fact and truth. You may not like it, and that’s ok, but it is news and worth reporting.

    sp

  • Guest800000000 says:

    Apparently you do not know what attorney client privilege is. I’m sure if I’m meeting with my attorney at the courthouse my attorney nor I paid to meet there. In using your words. The meeting between my attorney and me is a private meeting in a public facility at no charge to hold a secret meeting. Why should you have to get the DA’s permission but do not have to get someone else’s permission? Should you have to get the judges’ permission to put a camera in their offices. The DA is a public office in a public facility.
    The Golden Corral is a public place. It is open to the public. The public does not pay for it with their tax money, but it is a public place in that it is open to the public.

  • elaine says:

    You have to be kidding! What the DA’s office and the lawyers and judges have been doing in Brunswick County in the last twenty odd years can hardly be defined as positive or honest. Look at how many cases are voluntarily dismissed every week. Money passes somewhere to get that done. Everybody knows it – don’t insult the intelligence of citizens of the county. The whole problem is that the game is over while Jon David is in office. Pure and simple. Lay off of WWAY, they are where the truth IS published. Spin it anyway you want. How can anybody expect to receive justice in a courtroom here while it is knowledge that the judges and lawyers are against the DA’s office. People need to remember this at the polls. This is NOT about justice; this is about political and power interests. Oh yeah, I’m concerned, too. I don’t want more of what we’ve had in the past and a great many others agree.

  • Rose Phelps says:

    Too Funny!! Are you suggesting the public just keep their heads in the sand, so those fellows on their private committees can take turns on who gets to win in court this week!! I have seen to many times a couple of Judges use thier power to humiliate people just because they can, its a crooked justice system down there at The Brunswick County courthouse! Thats why I would NEVER live there again until some things get changed ..I am not running for office and those Attorneys can’t say anything they will never win another case. There called puppets!! They have nice houses just look at ” ” he lives in a fortress, really!!
    LOL

  • Concerned Brunswick Citizen says:

    Scott,

    I certainly do appreciate you challenging me on your continued disgraceful reporting. Here are just a couple of “so-called facts” that have absolutely no merit whatsoever. I would love to know where you received these “facts.” I would also hope that your supervisors or news directors take a serious look at what your news station has become.

    1) Bar meeting to discuss Jon David’s traffic program or Street Safe. I have spoken with several people who have informed me that these programs were never discussed. Where did you get your information regarding the contents of the meeting?
    2) Judge Jerry Jolly’s relationship with RC Soles. I am sure that you are aware that lew enforcement officer conduct investigations against the accused. A judge would not be involved in the prosecution, instead this would fall directly to the elected District Attorny. Please let me know where you received your information that Judge Jolly has ever acted inappropriately with regards to Mr. Soles.
    3) Streets being less safe because law enforcement has to be in court. Again, where did you get this information? As I am sure you aware through your research, officers have monthly court dates. They typcially don’t come to court until they are called. Again, another “fact” that just isn’t true.

    Scott, your reporting is slanderous. Accusing a judicial official of improper rulings or acting unethically is slanderous. You should apologize for your reporting. You are hurting people and attempting to make news. As a reporter, you should be ashamed. You have investigated any of the facts, you simply report what you think will sell. That is not what a local news station is for. They should unbiasly report the news. I certainly hope that if you want to pursue this story, you contact some of the local bar members. I think that you would be very surprised of some of their opinions. Again, thank you for your time and I look forward to your response.

    – Brunswick County Resident

  • citizen11 says:

    Will you please print/report that this resolution was passed by the Brunswick County Bar as a whole. That there were 6 assistant district attorneys that work for Jon David in that meeting also.

  • Rose Phelps says:

    Its about time someone brought up these issues, your very concerned about Brunswick County? Judge Jolly gets all this credit for being Honorable? Nobody says anything about the corruption because they are scared, puppets!! They dare not go against Judge Jolly or Judge Lewis, they (Attorneys would be black balled) It kills me how people think they no everything about what a person does or is like! Twenty five years is way too long for any Judge to sit on the bench in one county!! That is not right and The Attorneys don’t want the traffic court because it hurts there wallets!! Your a joke! You don’t know what goes on in the Judges chambers DO YOU???

  • elaine says:

    Puh-leeze! Nobody not in the ‘clique’ in this county believes one word you utter. Of course there was no discussion openly during the meeting. Everything takes place behind the scenes. That is precisely the problem here. And we know it. The good ole boys are behind this and it is for political and financial reasons. Their playground is coming apart because David does not play the game and is not going to do so. Your moral outrage would be funny were it not smeared across the bodies and destruction of many people who have had that justice you brag about on the part of judges and lawyers in this county. Scott does not owe you anything. This station is the only one who tells what goes on. If David had listened, he would have put every one of Gore’s holdovers out in the pasture, but he’s not that kind of man. They should all have followed their leader on out the door. And that includes you.

  • Thanks says:

    With all of the threatening Jon David has done of “legal action”…perhaps the bar was meeting to merely consult with potentianl “clients”….. how do you know it wasn’t an attorney/client meeting?? You don’t know it wasn’t! I have always supported WWAY, however, you’re wrong this time Scott. The bar was merely trying to come together to make an educated, unbiased decision. It was NOT a “secret” meeting, it was a MEMBERS only meeting!….The deputies are there to protect the public, and if a client and attorney were in the courthouse and the media was trying to be “nosey”… a deputy would escort them out. Same thing!

  • Concerned10 says:

    I dont think anyone is saying that this program isnt good, but we do have the same type of programs in our community colleges and you have to pay to take this class as well, the only thing is that the counties where the programs are benefits the county, so if these kids are required to go to New Hanover County to participate in this program, wouldnt it seem that new hanover county would benefit from our kids and paying them for this program. And according to the price of the program, StreetSafe seems to cost more than the one the colleges are using. Now what I want to know is if this prgram that they want to use is not allowed will the District Attorney make it impossible for our kids to use the one at the colleges. I guess time will tell.

  • kathryn912 says:

    I would just like to point out that there is nothing “controversial” about the StreetSafe program. The controversy is between the judge and the DA. I have a child who has attended this program. He LOVED it and has recommended it to all of his friends. The program is taught by first responders who do an excellent job of teaching young drivers vital skills they need on our roadways. In the parent session of the program, it was obvious to me that the men and women who instruct StreetSafe have their hearts in the right place. They simply want to save lives of young drivers. I sincerely hope for the young drivers of District 13 the nasty politics of this dies and the program will be available to them.

  • Scott Pickey says:

    Dear barmember:

    The president of the bar may have asked us to leave, but he had no authority to do so. Because Judge Lewis ordered security for the room, the sheriff’s deputies were compelled to escort us out of your private meeting.

    If you don’t like us being there, perhaps you should take your private meeting to Golden Corral or somewhere more private. As far as we’re concerned, if you choose to have it at the courthouse, which I remind you is a PUBLIC facility, we have every right to be there.

    Scott Pickey
    WWAY News Director

  • sam says:

    Are you saying that WWAY misquoted Judge Ola Lewis?
    That wouldn’t look good either.

  • Barmember says:

    It worries me the way that wway misrepresents events. I am a member of the Brunswick County Bar. The Brunswick County Bar is a private membership of Brunswick County Attorneys made up of private attorneys and prosecutors of the district attorneys office. These private meetings are never open to the public (including media). Judge Lewis is only a member and did not have any media people removed. The president of the bar is the person who informed your person not to be there.

  • Guest10-56 says:

    They are in a courthouse which was open for business anyway.They are lawyers. Its a courthouse. I mean…duh !!!All of a sudden people are worried about lawyers in the courthouse? I mean come on man !!

  • Guest333 says:

    The Taxpayers of Brunswick County and every surrounding County have a right to be darn mad, they also:

    1. Have 100% right to know what is being said, done and conspired upon when there is a meeting of any type on PUBLIC Property, IN a PUBLIC Building, using Public monies to provide light, heat, air-conditioning, facilities, janitorial service, and use of any audio-visual, computer equipment.

    2. Have a right and an obligation to inform The Brunswick County BAR Association, (no matter what they got away with in the past), that they need to cease and desist, and hold their sneaky meetings at the greasy spoon, or PAY for the use of the meeting room and keep the meeting OPEN to the PUBLIC.

    3. Need to inform the County Commissioners that this use of TAXPAYER funded facilities is NOT, I repeat, NOT AT ALL ACCEPTABLE and we need to be reimbursed on our taxes for all indescrete use of our public facilities. OR KEEP THE MEETING OPEN!

    4.) Need to inform the County Commissioners that Judge OLA LEWIS Needs to Personally Reimburse the county for the use of a Brunswick County Sheriff Deputy for a PRIVATE MEETING IN A PUBLIC FACILITY, USING TAXPAYER ELECTRICITY, air conditioning, etc., while KEEPING THE PUBLIC LOCKED OUT. WWAY reported “Brunswick County Judge Ola Lewis had requested security for the meeting to keep anyone from coming in.”

    WWAY, THANK YOU FOR BRINGING THIS SLY, SLICK AND WICKED networking to LIGHT and thank you for at least TRYING… not once, but twice to gain ADMISSION! If you need tickets, try showing them your PAID TAX RECEIPT!

  • Its me says:

    It should be noted that town council members, county comissioners, board of aldermen, etc. go into closed sessions all the time in public facilities and municipal buildings. Nobody says “shame on them” The courthouse is required to have Sheriff’s Deputies at the entrance if people are entering the doors. The Brunswick COunty Bar Association is an organization of dues paying members and their business does not have to be made public.

  • haha says:

    Every courthouse has attorney/client meeting rooms that the media can not enter! Guess what…the tax payers pay for the court appointed attorneys! If you are NOT an attorney who is an active member of the bar association, you have NO business in there! Bottom line! I am sure they needed time to talk and discuss thier feelings openingly without media/press asking a zillion questions. Think about it, and get real!

  • Guest47 says:

    Nothing here in Brunswick County looks good. Shouldn’t be hard to figure that out.

  • sam says:

    Maybe it doesn’t look good because it is not good!
    I am a Brunswick County taxpayer and it doesn’t look good to me!

  • John says:

    Jolly is just trying to keep his good ol boy network intact. David took action against R.C. and Jollys has been searching to find something on him ever since.

  • Guest421 says:

    Looks like DA David is the “good ‘ol boy”. Somebody contributes to his campaign and he returns the favor…..’nuf said. Also, Judge Lewis turned a drunk driver loose on the public on a technicality….so much for her, too. The Brunswick County machine is alive and well.

  • Guest123 says:

    First – the StreetSafe program would be run through the community college in Brunswick, along with the other driving programs.
    Second – The classroom programs at the college are NOT AT ALL the same as StreetSafe, which is a hands-on program focusing specifically on young drivers.
    Third – It costs only slightly more than the classroom driving programs (which require one instructor lecturing to a unlimited amount of students) Yet, StreetSafe’s program requires 5 vehicles, 8-10 instructors, insurance, facility fees, etc to run it’s program.
    It also offers the program for a very minimal cost to any teen driver interested in attending.

    My teenager attended the StreetSafe program and I can tell you it is run by very dedicated people who care about saving the lives of our most at-risk drivers. He still talks about how much he learned at StreetSafe and has told all his friends to take the class. Judge Jolly should be ashamed to involve this highly effective, well- respected program in his personal dispute with Jon David. There are many families who would greatly benefit from having StreetSafe in Brunswick Co.

  • Concern says:

    Who do you trust more, a time-share salesman, a lawyer or a judge in this district?? Now look at the whole picture, you get a speeding ticket, you go to traffic court and get it reduced yourself in an hour. The judges and lawyers want you to pay $100 or $200 to them and sit there all day. Wake up, it is all about money. How many lawyers have given judges money at election time. The man(David) is just trying to do the right thing for the people. Why would Lewis not let the news media in the meeting, somebody needs to call the SBI, she did on Gore. What did they have to hide. SOMETHING?????

  • Guest9564576 says:

    The judge doesn’t get a dime of your $100 or $200 if you sit there 30 minutes or all day and if you retain an attorney they tell you what their fee is upfront for the service they are providing. If the attorney is court appointed (which the defendant has to reimburse the state for if they plead guilty or are found guilty)that attorney doesn’t bill for their client sitting in court all day. Rest assured, no attorney sits in one court all day dealing with one case, they are back and forth between all the courts and more often than not, their client is in court waiting on them (not getting paid by the hour, but by the job)

  • John says:

    David has no ties to Brunswick. Look how much attorney Roy Tresc has donated to Jollys campaign. Look how many dinners, golf trips, and vacations Jolly has gone on that were funded by attorneys. Then when that attorney has a high paying client who gets a DUI Jolly dismisses it. Look what he did when the county comishiners son who was a Deputy received a DUI from ALE. Dismissed

  • elaine says:

    You said it, John. But don’t take my word for it, people. Check the court decisions each week and you will see what John is saying. Last week over 50% of the cases were voluntarily dismissed. Wonder how that came about? It wasn’t just Jolly, either. And it goes on every single week. Check it if you don’t believe.

  • Rich says:

    The fact is, if I was head of an organized group like the Krishas, or other unusual groups, I would not have that type of closed-door access to a public building, much less uniformed security. I guess the priveleged few that has passed the bar in this state, and certainly can pay for their own meetings, are too cheap and too misuderstood to pay for their own meeeting spaces. This smells bad, looks bad, and feels sort of tacky for those of you in front of the bar… Move to somewhere else and let this controversy die!

  • Guest333 says:

    “Crazy is as crazy does!”

    They were in there conspiring against Jon David, by giving a phoney baloney endorsement to the Judge, as it turns out.

    You are the Craziest of them all!

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