Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Our reporting on Jeff Sessions, Bill Pryor, and other Alabama politicos made us a target for a Roger Stone cyber harassment campaign via fake Facebook pages

Roger Stone and Donald Trump
(Part 2)

(Click here for Part 1)

How did Legal Schnauzer land amidst Facebook's takedown of pages and accounts associated with Donald Trump ally and self-proclaimed GOP dirty trickster Roger Stone, a story that made global headlines last week?

Facebook released a report on July 8 about its internal investigation, titled "Removing Coordinated Inauthentic Behavior," focusing primarily on the size, scope, and fraudulent nature of the Stone network.

Sarah Jameson
 Last Friday, New York City-based Graphika, which uses artificial intelligence to analyze social media issued a followup report titled "Facebook's Roger Stone Takedown," which focused on how the Stone network operated, the messages it sent, and the people it targeted. Partially with help of search warrants from the Robert Mueller investigation, Graphika determined I was one of those targets. The report provides details about the barrage of nasty, profane comments and emails we began receiving around November 2016. Graphika shines light on just how crude and threatening Stone -- and perhaps other Trump allies -- can be, targeting Legal Schnauzer for what likely can best be described as a cyber harassment and cyber stalking campaign.

Graphika begins describing my experience with the Stone network on page 26 of the report, under the sub-heading "Harassing Behavior":

Harassing Behavior

Some of the network’s activity also suggests harassment or incitement to harassment, sometimes in a coordinated fashion. One such incident was attributed to the “Sarah Jameson” persona. According to legal blog “Legal Schnauzer” in January 2017, a persona with this name sent the blogger at least one “argumentative and ugly” email. A persona more broadly called “Sarah” sent many more messages. The blogger associated the emails with the Facebook account and included a copy of its profile picture.

What seemed to prompt rage-filled responses from the Stone surrogates?  I addressed that question in a post dated January 6, 2017:

Evidence in our spam folder here at Legal Schnauzer suggests a Donald Trump ally and former Richard Nixon dirty trickster somehow is involved in a series of harassing, profanity-filled e-mails we started receiving about seven weeks ago.

The ugly e-mails started around the middle of November after we wrote posts about two Alabamians -- Jeff Sessions (Trump's pick for U.S. attorney general) and Bill Pryor (a Sessions protege and likely Trump nominee for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court).

Were the nasty comments from Stone's network sparked only by our coverage of Sessions and Pryor? Oh, no. Other Alabama-related reports set them off, as I noted in a post dated December 15, 2016:

What were the nutty, creepy comments that we received after our recent reports on Donald Trump nominee Jeff Sessions and likely nominee Bill Pryor? Are the comments connected to longtime Trump ally Roger Stone, a frequent guest on the Alex Jones InfoWars show and admitted associate of the WikiLeaks operation that produced hacked e-mails from the Hillary Clinton campaign?

We will save that second question for another day? But we will dive right in on the first question and note that the deluge of comments, most of which I deleted or sent to spam, seem to come in several categories -- rants about the defamation lawsuit GOP operative Jessica Medeiros Garrison brought against me, rants about the first nude Bill Pryor photo (a second one is coming), rants about our reporting on "Luv Guv" Bentley and his adviser/mistress Rebekah Caldwell Mason, rants about alleged violations here of the Child Protection Act (related to the Pryor photo), bogus claims of e-mail communications with me, and harassing, profanity-filled tirades.

I ran a few of these comments and tried to engage the sender in fact or reason-based dialogue. It soon became apparent that was a waste of time.

We even received nasty comments related to our reports on the unlawful eviction that led Missouri deputies to break my wife Carol's arm. Not content to claim Carol somehow broke her own arm, the Stone bunch included wildly defamatory comments about Carol, even worse than what they said bout me. Of course, these people supported a "pussy grabber" for president, so it probably should be no surprise that they would attack a woman -- even one who had been the victim of police brutality.

Want a sampling of messages that appeared to come from the Stone network, along with my response, in a few cases? Here is one from the Graphika report:

The First Nude Bill Pryor Photograph (It's not him, it's not him!)
Trumpista (sent 11/25/16) -- "You can see what I've told you. Natural (hair) parts do not change over time by themselves. Pryor would have no reason to force a part change, the mid face is not the same, it's visible, measurable, and philtrums grow longer, not shorter with age. Pryor's ears are set higher. He has deviations in his nasal cartilage not visible in the pic of the adolescent nude. The nasal bridge and eye socket are different. You are a liar if you pretend measurable differences are not visible.

"You don't have anyone who investigated the photo on tape saying there was a finding that the picture was of him. You can't, because there was no such finding, and the picture is of someone else."

The Truth -- This person was asked to give her name, contact information, and any expertise upon which the claims are made. Of course, that information was not forthcoming. I have multiple law-enforcement officials and legal insiders -- some of them on tape -- stating that they were involved in an investigation of the Pryor photos when they first surfaced, they traced the photos to Monroe, Louisiana, (where Pryor went to college), and it is, in fact, the Bill Pryor who now is a federal judge. The commenter, by the way, has no answer for the fact that both the young and older Pryor have strabismus (crossed eyes) and attached ear lobes, relatively rare conditions.

We will present more samples, cited by Graphika, in an upcoming post.

(To be continued)

Monday, August 10, 2020

Legal Schnauzer winds up in the middle of Facebook's effort to remove fraudulent accounts associated with Trump ally and GOP dirty trickster Roger Stone

Roger Stone
In January 2017, we published a post in which I expressed suspicions that someone associated with Donald Trump ally and GOP dirty trickster Roger Stone had targeted Legal Schnauzer for a stream of vile, profane, and threatening comments. Turns out we were right.

Facebook made international headlines last Friday with reports that the cybersecurity firm Graphika had determined that Stone and his associates created a disinformation network that prompted Facebook to launch a takedown effort of fake accounts that stretched from Canada to Brazil, from Ecuador to Ukraine. From a report at the South Florida SunSentinel, which covers Stone's home base of Fort Lauderdale:

Roger Stone spent a half-century honing his skills as a political operator and building a reputation as a stop-at-nothing dirty trickster, in support of a range of big-name politicians and causes, including Donald Trump and Richard Nixon.

Now, a report from the cybersecurity firm Graphika suggests that Stone — who in recent years has become one of Fort Lauderdale’s best-known residents — was able to translate his real-world approach to the online world, exploiting the social media platform Facebook as he pursued goals that included promoting Trump and himself.

A closer look at the document shows how the Sunshine State emerged as an epicenter for the disinformation network, which set out to meddle in Florida politics and beyond.

The social media giant ultimately took down a network of 54 Facebook accounts, 50 pages and four from Instagram, another social media site it owns. A map showed 15 locations of the accounts were in Florida, mostly along the east coast from Vero Beach to Miami; a handful were elsewhere.

Some pages associated with Stone promoted Stone, and often his books. Some attempted to influence legislation and criticized enemies — including Hillary Clinton — sometimes with negative messages. Some used fake names and were illustrated with faces found on the internet.

Our investigation linked this network to Roger Stone and his associates,” Facebook said. Some had links to the far-right group Proud Boys, Facebook said.
Facebook apparently spared no expense in tracking the Stone network. From Facebook's report on its internal investigation:

We found this network as part of our internal investigation into suspected coordinated inauthentic behavior in the region. Although the people behind this activity attempted to conceal their identities and coordination, our investigation found links to political consultants and former government employees in Ecuador and Estraterra, a Canada-based PR firm. Estraterra is now banned from our platforms.

Several of these Pages had links to Proud Boys, a hate group we banned in 2018. Some Pages appeared to have acquired followers from Pakistan and Egypt to make themselves seem more popular than they were. This network — which was also active on other internet platforms — was most active between 2015 and 2017. Since then, the majority of these accounts have been dormant, and some were permanently deleted by the users. The Page admins and account owners posted about local politics in Florida, Roger Stone and his Pages, websites, books, and media appearances.

Stone's social network unraveled primarily because of his ties to the Proud Boys and Robert Mueller's investigation of the Trump-Russia scandal from the 2016 presidential election. From the internal Facebook report:

We first started looking into this network as part of our investigation into the Proud Boys’ attempts to return to Facebook after we had designated and banned them from the platform. We identified the full scope of this network following the recent public release of search warrants pertaining to the investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller in response to a joint petition from The New York Times, CNN, the Associated Press, The Washington Post, and Politico. Our investigation linked this network to Roger Stone and his associates.

How does Legal Schnauzer enter the picture? The SunSentinel explains:

The [Facebook] report, issued last month, tied one example of online harassment by the network to a Sarah Jameson Facebook account, which purported to be a woman living in Plantation.
Sarah Jameson
Roger Shuler, who writes an online blog called “Legal Schnauzer,” said he received a barrage of profanity-laden emails from some claiming to be a “Sarah Jameson” in 2015 and 2016. The person emailing was upset over Shuler’s critical posts about then-U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions and federal Judge Bill Pryor.

Shuler said he looked up Jameson’s Facebook page and found a “Roger Stone shrine.” It seemed bizarre enough for him to write on his blog about the account with only 18 friends and posts promoting Stone.

“I definitely had suspicions that it was a fake account or a false identity,” Shuler said. “It was kind of like a fan-girl page. Not much in-depth information. Whoever it was seemed to like Roger Stone for some reason.”

“It made me wonder: Roger Stone is known for dirty tricks. Was he involved in some of this?” Shuler added.

The Mueller search warrants apparently helped prove, among other things, that Stone and Co. targeted Legal Schnauzer for what likely can best be described as a cyber harassment and cyber stalking campaign. Ours is the only blog mentioned in the Graphika report as a specific target of the Stone network:

Similarly, a Facebook account called “Sarah Jameson” that Facebook identified as part of the network matched names and profile pictures with an account called @S_jameson82 on Twitter. The Twitter account was created in 2016 and stopped posting in early 2017; of its 20 most recent posts, 11 focused on Stone or advertised his books. Most of the rest focused on Donald Trump’s election campaign in 2016 and the controversy over his ban on immigrants from seven majority-Muslim countries in early 2017.

Some of the network’s activity also suggests harassment or incitement to harassment, sometimes in a coordinated fashion. One such incident was attributed to the “Sarah Jameson” persona. According to legal blog “Legal Schnauzer” in January 2017, a persona with this name sent the blogger at least one “argumentative and ugly” email. A persona more broadly called “Sarah” sent many more messages. The blogger associated the emails with the Facebook account and included a copy of its profile picture.

How ugly did the messages from "Sarah" get? We will address that question in an upcoming post.

(To be continued)

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Is Dr. Anthony Fauci's credibility in tatters after he seemingly buckled to political pressure and endorsed opening schools amidst COVID-19 pandemic?

Dr. Athony Fauci

Has Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's most prominent infectious-diseases expert, sullied his credibility by stating U.S. schools should be able ro open safely this fall despite the coronavirus pandemic? Have persistent bullying from Donald Trump -- and reported threats against Fauci and his family -- created a level of intimidation that caused Fauci to jump on the Trump Train to open schools, consequences be damned?

Those questions came to mind earlier this week after Fauci, the nation's most trusted voice on the COVID-19 crisis, said schools should be able to open safely, in the face of published reports suggesting that is not likely to happen. From an article at CNN:

Schools and college campuses across the country should be OK to reopen, but officials need to proceed with caution and make safety a priority, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Monday.

The default position with K-12 schools should be to reopen them, said Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

There are two big reasons schools should go back to in-person learning, Fauci said Monday. Students need the psychological and nutritional benefits of being in school, and parents may have to "dramatically modify their work schedule."

Notice that the "two big reasons" Fauci cites for reopening schools have nothing to do with safety of children, teachers, administrators, or others in the classroom environment. This doesn't sound like the same guy Americans have come to trust as a straight shooter. And what about those ominous reports Fauci seems to be ignoring? One comes from the Chicago Tribune, under the headline "Children may carry high levels of the coronavirus, up to 100 times as much as adults, new Lurie Children’s Hospital study finds":

It has been a comforting refrain in the national conversation about reopening schools: Young children are mostly spared by the coronavirus and don’t seem to spread it to others, at least not very often.

But Thursday, a study introduced an unwelcome wrinkle into this smooth narrative.

Infected children have at least as much of the coronavirus in their noses and throats as infected adults, according to the research. Indeed, children younger than age 5 may host up to 100 times as much of the virus in the upper respiratory tract as adults, the authors found.

That measurement does not necessarily prove that children are passing the virus to others. Still, the findings should influence the debate over reopening schools, several experts said.

“The school situation is so complicated. There are many nuances beyond just the scientific one,” said Dr. Taylor Heald-Sargent, a pediatric infectious diseases expert at the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, who led the study, published in JAMA Pediatrics. “But one takeaway from this is that we can’t assume that just because kids aren’t getting sick, or very sick, that they don’t have the virus.”

From a commentary by Mark Karlin at BuzzFlash:

Indeed, the CDC, which just a few days ago succumbed to the political pressure of the Trump White House and announced that schools were safe to open, has now, just a short time later, come to the inevitable recognition of what the scientific data reveals: “A new [CDC] report suggests that children of all ages are susceptible to coronavirus infection and may also spread it to others….”

BuzzFlash has written two recent commentaries on actual statistics from the most pro-Trump pandemic raging Red States that indicate widespread presence of the Coronavirus among young people, including infants, 1-10 year olds and teenagers. There are many examples of transmission between adults and children at summer camps, and even at daycare centers. We do know that more than 1300 confirmed infections occurred in Texas child care centers. That includes 441 children. The numbers have risen as Texas, one of the states exploding with Coronavirus, has experienced increasing infection.

In addition, many summer camps experienced large cluster outbreaks among students and camp counselors. The Daily Beast reported on July 31 that a Georgia overnight camp opened on June 21 and closed on June 27 because 76 percent of the campers who were tested for the Coronavirus came back positive. Other campers, with a median age of 12, still remain to be tested, which means the positivity rate may still be higher.

The other troubling report comes from a Washington Post op-ed by Arizona school superintendent Jeff Gregorich:

This is my choice, but I’m starting to wish that it wasn’t. I don’t feel qualified. I’ve been a superintendent for 20 years, so I guess I should be used to making decisions, but I keep getting lost in my head. I’ll be in my office looking at a blank computer screen, and then all of the sudden I realize a whole hour’s gone by. I’m worried. I’m worried about everything. Each possibility I come up with is a bad one.

The governor has told us we have to open our schools to students on August 17th, or else we miss out on five percent of our funding. I run a high-needs district in middle-of-nowhere Arizona. We’re 90 percent Hispanic and more than 90 percent free-and-reduced lunch. These kids need every dollar we can get. But covid is spreading all over this area and hitting my staff, and now it feels like there’s a gun to my head. I already lost one teacher to this virus. Do I risk opening back up even if it’s going to cost us more lives? Or do we run school remotely and end up depriving these kids?

Some of these kids are out in the wilderness right now, and school is the best place for them. We all agree on that. But every time I start to play out what that looks like on August 17th, I get sick to my stomach. More than a quarter of our students live with grandparents. These kids could very easily catch this virus, spread it and bring it back home. It’s not safe. There’s no way it can be safe.

If you think anything else, I’m sorry, but it’s a fantasy. Kids will get sick, or worse. Family members will die. Teachers will die.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Tales of intrigue from Tommy Gallion: An intrepid attorney, with deep Southern roots, shines a bright light in dark corners of Alabama politics (Part 3)

Shadow Government, Southern Style: A Saga of Political Corruption From D.C. to Dixie (2020), by Thomas T. Gallion III; available from Amazon and Kindle eBooks

Tommy Gallion's Shadow Government  might be the most searing examination of Deep-South political corruption in the postmodern era. It is a work of considerable depth and breadth, deserving of its own review -- which we will endeavor to provide in an upcoming post. It also is "in the moment," filled with essentially breaking stories, largely unknown to the reading public here in the midst of election season,  Gallion set out to become an investigative journalist before settling into a long legal career, with a base in Montgomery, AL. Shadow Government shows that he has the searching eye and inquisitive mind of  a reporter.

Tommy Gallion
 Before delving into our review in a few weeks, we will produce a series of posts that examine some of the breaking news found in Shadow Government's pages. This is the third of those posts: (Part 1 is here; Part 2 is here;)

Doug Jones, once the "King of Conflicts" as a private attorney and now a U.S. senator, worked all sides of the fence in the political prosecution of former Democratic Gov. Don Siegelman and his codefendant, former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy. How did Jones get away with it?

Doug Jones might style himself as a liberal friend of the working man. But in Tommy Gallion's book, he is a backstabbing SOB. He also has a tendency to pal around with, and cut deals with, oily Republicans. From Shadow Government, Southern Style:

During my investigation in that summer of 2018, I discovered one other unbelievable fact: Doug Jones, currently the junior U.S. senator from Alabama, appears to be connected to the political prosecution of Scrushy and Siegelman. The only witness against Don Siegelman was his top aide, Nick Bailey. The US Attorney's office had pressured Bailey with prosecution if he refused to testify against Siegelman. Bailey repeatedly told them he knew nothing against Siegelman, but they continued to pressure him to lie or face prison. Weak, scared, and knowing he wouldn't last three foggy mornings in prison, Bailey buckled. His false testimony convicted Siegelman, and by default, Scrushy. Here is the most stuning part o this scenario: Doug Jones was Don Siegelman's attorney, and Siegelman had reportedly paid him a $300,000 retainer. Shortly before the trial, Jones strangely withdrew from the case. (Note: At the time of this original posting, it was unclear if Jones returned the retainer, or any portion of it, to Siegelman. I followed up with Gallion, and he stated that, in a conversation about three weeks ago, Siegelman told him Jones did not return the retainer -- and did very little work on the case.) Then Jones immediately began representing Nick Bailey! This is such a blatant conflict of interest that there could be no debate on the issue. Jones was smart enough to allegedly trick Siegelman into signing a release so he could get out of the case. I was told by reliable sources that there is a tape recording of Nick Bailey stating that he was forced to lie, and his new lawyer Doug Jones worked  a deal with Leura Canary's to pull off this unscrupulous fix. The Rileys could not afford to have the tape released or the fact that Nick  Bailey was going to lie to the jury, so they brought in their buddy Doug Jones to help convict his former client, Don Siegelman.
Scrushy could hardly believe the scenario I had put together, illustrating what these people had done to him and his family. Scrushy had none of the documents and the evidence I had obtained until our meeting in 2018. He was so upset he could hardly catch his breath. Scrushy, for the first time, discovered what these people had done to him, and the whole scheme, ugly as it was, finally made sense.

In my more recent research, I found facts that sum up how disloyal these Cabal members are to their own political parties. Republicqns Karl Rove, Tom Donohue, Rob Riley, and Bill Canary formed a group to help elect liberal Democrat Doug Jones to the US Senate in his race against conservative Republican Roy Moore. Why? Doug Jones was US Attorney in Alabama from 1997 to 2001. During the George W. Bush administration, it was reported that Karl Rove later became close to Jones and funneled government-assigned jobs to him, because he had qllegedly helped The Cabal use Scrushy to convict Siegelman, Jones's former client.  Rove owed Jones because he and Jones had allegedly used Eric [Holder] to keep Rove from having to testify before a Congressional committee regarding the political prosecution of  Siegelman and Scrushy. If true, how tragic is Jones's unethical behavior when he represented Siegelman, obtaining attorney-client privileged information, while the whole time allegedly working with his close friend to take his own client, Siegelman, down? The big question is: Who paid Jones to represent Bailey?

Monday, August 3, 2020

When police brutality comes home: Studies show that law-enforcement officers engage in domestic abuse at about 15 times the rate for the general population

Cops do not just bully and brutalize individuals on the street; they also engage in domestic abuse -- with wives, significant others, and kids the victims -- at roughly 15 times the rate in the general population, according to a report at fatherly.com. From a piece titled " Police Brutality at Home: Cops Abuse Wives and Kids at Staggering Rates: It remains an open secret that law enforcement officers abuse wives and children at startling rates":

Police violence is undeniable. As Black Lives Matter protests and riots erupt across the nation, video after video shows cops attacking unarmed civilians. In Louisville, David McAtee was murdered by a police officer for protesting the murder of George Floyd by a police officer. But many still believe that police can be trusted to act in the public interest, protecting and serving the innocent. Surely many do, but research into the private lives of cops suggests that belief in the restraint of law enforcement is founded at least in part on faith in men who abuse their wives and children.

Research, slightly outdated and skewed by a culture of silence and intimidation, suggests that police officers in the United States perpetrate acts of domestic violence at roughly 15 times the rate of the general population. Because officers protect their own, domestic victims of violent cops often don’t know where to go. Sometimes they reach out to Alex Roslin, author of Police Wife: The Secret Epidemic of Police Domestic Violence, the American Society of Journalists and Authors-award winning book that constitutes perhaps the only major work on this subject.

Domestic abuse by cops is a well-known problem, but few people seem to know what to do about it. And police departments certainly are not likely to help:
“I get emails that would make your hair crawl,” says Roslin, a Canadian freelance journalist who came to the issue two decades ago after a friend working with survivors of abuse informed him police wives and biker gang spouses constituted the bulk of her patient population.

Police abuse, Roslin points out, is an open secret. In 1991, sociologist Leonor Johnson presented to the U.S. House of Representatives Select Committee on Children, Youth and Families, suggesting that 360,000 of the then 900,000 law enforcement officers in the U.S. were likely perpetrating acts of abuse. After a Los Angeles Police Department officer murdered his wife and committed suicide in the late ’90s, a review of domestic abuse allegations brought against officers showed that between 1990 and 1997, 227 alleged cases of domestic violence were brought against police officers, only 91 were sustained and only 4 resulted in conviction of criminal charges. Of the four convictions, only one officer was suspended from duty. He was asked to take three weeks off.

Roslin's book includes statistics that boggle the mind:

For many, cops remain heroes. But the law enforcement culture lionized by reactionaries is also a culture of silence antithetical to the values of most partners and parents. Fatherly spoke to Alex Roslin about the extent of the problem and why it persists.
The numbers in your book are absolutely shocking. In particularly, the number 15 is shocking. You support the claim that abuse is roughly 15 times more pervasive within police families than in the general population. Where does that come from?

The major study here was done by a police officer and a sociologist in Tucson, Arizona, working with a collaborator who had studied domestic violence in military families. It wasn’t by the police department officially. That study found that 40 percent of cops reported having participated in domestic violence in the previous year. The researchers questioned spouses and officers separately with anonymous questions and came up with strikingly similar figures.

An FBI advisory board later found that roughly 40 percent of officers who filled out questionnaires in a number of different settings admitted to being physically violent with their spouse in the previous six months. The general population data for self-reported abuse is closer to 4 percent when people are asked to report on the last 12 months.
The numbers are higher for cops who work night shifts.

It’s worth nothing that the sample sizes are a bit small and that these are older studies. Given the potential scale of the crisis, it’s bizarre that there wouldn’t be more available numbers.
The 40 percent number is the closest I could figure while trying to do an apples to apples comparison. We know for sure that the rate of domestic violence among cops from the little data we have is ridiculously high. We know that thanks to research done in part by police officers, some of whom suggest that number might be low. So we wind up with cops being around 15 times more likely to engage in domestic violence than members of the general population. (Editor’s Note: The comparison here is based on 1.5 to 4 percent of U.S. and Canadian women reporting domestic violence by a partner and an estimate that 6 to 14 percent of children are abused each year. These numbers vary because data is based largely on incidents and self-reporting.)

We should consider why the data is nonexistent or decades old. Why is no one looking at a massive issue of public interest? I’ve been working on updating my book for a third edition. Doing research I’ve found 40 examples of cops in the United States murdering their spouses. That’s over just three years.

Is there data available on the children of cops? Is there any reason to believe that abuse doesn’t extend beyond partner violence?

Sadly, I’ve seen no data on that, but anecdotally… I’ve heard a lot of stories. It’s not just police partners that face abuse. It’s children. There have been a lot of reports of that and it makes sense.

It’s a broad question, but unavoidable: Why is this happening?

Abuse is an open secret among police officers. Many officers claim that it’s the result of a stressful job. But in my research and in talking to domestic violence researchers, it becomes clear that stress doesn’t really cause abuse. There are lots of stressful jobs. Paramedics and surgeons and fire fighters don’t have this kind of problem.

The more honest officers will tell you that policing is a job about control — controlling people and controlling chaotic environments. It attracts people with that mentality and that desire. Not all police officers are the same, but the more authoritarian police officers are the more likely they are to be violent at home.

These men aren’t losing control. They are maintaining control. That’s different.

That’s a disturbing idea because it suggests a strong connection between domestic violence and public violence. Do you see a strong link there?

The reality is that police are being put into places in society where they are supposed to be in control, but we have both movements toward recognizing the rights of more groups — notably women and minorities — and also more inequality than ever. Maintaining control in that environment becomes extremely taxing. My fear is that this is trending the wrong way. When police are protecting this kind of status quo, you’re going to see more domestic violence, not less.

The inequalities of society force us to empower police. And that empowerment results in the hiring of abusers. Police domestic violence is a mirror held up to our society. Who polices an unequal and violent society?

Are there causes beyond the desire for control? It feels like that impulse would be tempered by the proximity of… law enforcement officers. Is it not?
No. Cops get away with it. Anthony Bouza, a one-time commander in the New York Police Department and former police chief of Minneapolis, said that ‘The Mafia never enforced its code of blood-sworn omerta with the ferocity, efficacy, and enthusiasm the police bring to the Blue Code of Silence.” That’s reflected in rates at which violence is reported and the degree to which there are consequences.

What happens to partners abused by police?

In general, these women are terrified. Normally, domestic violence survivors are not in a good place. But these women know the cop has a gun and knows how to commit violence without leaving a mark and they say, “Everyone will think you’re crazy.” And she can’t necessarily go to a shelter because he knows where they are.

Some of these women contact me. I’m a freelance journalist in Canada. I’m happy to do what I can to help, but why is there no one else?

You’re a father. What do you tell your kids about the police? How do you talk to them about law enforcement given what you know and given your work?

My daughters know what I do. They know what I’m writing about. My wife has two uncles who are retired officers. We live in a small town and a former police officer is now the mayor and lives down the street. Police officers are humans. At the same time, my kids know that there is a darker side to policing.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Martin Gugino, the 75-year-old activist in Buffalo, NY, has a fractured skull and cannot walk, but will prosecutors be able to get assault convictions vs. cops?

Martin Gugino, the 75-year-old activist who sustained a fractured skull (and could not walk for a time) when he was shoved to a concrete sidewalk by police in Buffalo, NY, has been released from a hospital, according to a report at CNN:

Martin Gugino, the 75-year-old protestor who was pushed by two Buffalo police officers in early June, has left the hospital, his lawyer Kelly Zarcone said in a statement on Tuesday.

Gugino will continue his recovery at an undisclosed location to ensure privacy. Zarcone said that Gugino can "walk with a little help" and that his condition will continue to improve with time and rest.
Despite the severity of Gugino's injuries, our research indicates prosecutors will have difficulty getting convictions on assault charges against the two cops who pushed Gugino. That's because New York law, as in many other states (including Alabama), requires the state on second-degree assault to prove that not only defendants intended to assault the victim, but that they also intended to cause him serious physical injury.

That almost seems to require mind reading, so how can it be proven in a court of law? Our research of New York case law indicates it can be done, but it generally comes down to two words: "readily inferable." Let's look at a relevant New York case:

New York v. Adam M. Hadfield, 2014 NY Slip Op 05462 

The Facts:
Defendant was convicted, after a nonjury trial, of assault in the second degree. The charge stemmed from his conduct, while incarcerated at the St. Lawrence County Correctional Facility, in kicking another inmate in the face during a game in the recreational yard. When questioned by Correction Sergeant Jeffrey Bercume, defendant admitted that he had kicked the victim in the face because he was annoyed with him, but asserted that it had been accidental. The incident was recorded by facility cameras, and a video thereof was played and admitted into evidence at trial. Upon his conviction, defendant was sentenced as a second felony offender to a prison term of seven years with three years of postrelease supervision, to be served concurrently to the aggregate 53-year prison term imposed on the same date for unrelated convictions. Defendant now appeals.

The Law (most citations omitted): 
Contrary to defendant's claims, the verdict is supported by legally sufficient evidence and is not contrary to the weight of the credible evidence. To prove that defendant committed the crime of assault in the second degree as charged, the People were required to establish that, while incarcerated after having been charged or convicted of a crime, defendant intentionally caused physical injury to another person (see Penal Law § 120.05 [7]). Defendant conceded that, at the time of the incident, he was incarcerated and had been charged with numerous sex offenses and other crimes; he challenges only the evidence of his intent and of the victim's physical injuries. Viewing the evidence, particularly the video of the assault, in the light most favorable to the People and affording them the benefit of every favorable inference, as we must on a legal sufficiency review, we find that the People established beyond a reasonable doubt that defendant intentionally caused physical injury to the victim (see People v Bleakley, 69 NY2d at 495). His intent was readily inferable from the deliberate, forceful and unprovoked conduct itself and the surrounding circumstances, all of which were clearly captured on the video . The People proved that the victim had sustained "physical injury" with evidence that he remained crouched down for several minutes after the assault and was later found disoriented and injured in his cell with a swollen face and cut lip, experiencing a high level of pain. The victim had no memory of the incident or of the surrounding time period, and the medical evidence established that he had sustained a concussion (see Penal Law § 10.00 [9]. As "there is a[ ] valid line of reasoning and permissible inferences which could lead a rational person to the conclusion reached by the [factfinder] on the basis of the evidence at trial" , we find that the evidence was legally sufficient.

Upon our independent review of the weight of the credible evidence, we find that, in light of the video of the assault unmistakably demonstrating defendant's intent to cause physical injury to the victim, a different verdict would have been unreasonable. Even if a different verdict would have been reasonable , viewing the probative force of the conflicting evidence in a neutral light and according deference to the credibility determinations of County Court, as factfinder, given its ability to view the witnesses firsthand, we are satisfied that the verdict was not contrary to the weight of the evidence. The court rationally rejected as incredible defendant's explanation that his actions in kicking the victim in the face were accidental or part of the game, as his conduct can only reasonably be viewed as intentional.

In Hadfield, the presence of video was a central factor in the state's ability to prove intent to injure and achieve a conviction. Will video of the Gugino incident provide  a similar boost to the state's case? That, it seems to us, is  a close call -- and it will depend on a court's interpretation of the video and other evidence in light of the words "readily inferable."

We will be following the proceedings from afar.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Tales of intrigue from Tommy Gallion: An intrepid attorney, with deep Southern roots, shines a bright light in dark corners of Alabama politics (Part 2)

Shadow Government, Southern Style: A Saga of Political Corruption From D.C. to Dixie (2020), by Thomas T. Gallion III; available from Amazon and Kindle eBooks

Tommy Gallion's Shadow Government  might be the most searing examination of Deep-South political corruption in the postmodern era. It is a work of considerable depth and breadth, deserving of its own review -- which we will endeavor to provide in an upcoming post. It also is "in the moment," filled with essentially breaking stories, largely unknown to the reading public here in the midst of election season,  Gallion set out to become an investigative journalist before settling into a long legal career, with a base in Montgomery, AL. Shadow Government shows that he has the searching eye and inquisitive mind of  a reporter.

Tommy Gallion
 Before delving into our review in a few weeks, we will produce a series of posts that examine some of the breaking news found in Shadow Government's pages. This is the second of those posts: (Part 1 is here)

What was the real motivation behind the political prosecution of former Democratic Gov. Don Siegelman and his codefendant, former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy?

No one, to my knowledge, has been able to pin a definitive answer on this question -- although there are many intriguing theories. Most people, it seems, assume it was a Republican scheme to force Siegelman out of politics because they could not beat him at the ballot box. Gallion, however, takes a different view: He says it was designed more to gain control over Scrushy's considerable financial clout than to limit, or ruin, Siegelman's political clout. In other words, it was more about money than politics. From Shadow Government, Southern Style:

During the summer of 2018, I met with Scrushy to learn what had happened to him. (See note at end of post.) After several meetings, I asked Scrushy if he ever considered that the whole thing had been a ploy by Rob Riley, his brother-in-law [Rob] Campbell, and Doug Jones to set him up  to take over the legal business of HealthSouth that Campbell's firm had been courting for years. I also told that based on the information he had just given me, plus the fact Rob Riley, Doug Jones, and Campbell's firm had sued him, this was their plan from the beginning. I personally put together the puzzle and informed him this whole matter had nothing to do with Siegelman, but was to make money for Campbell, Riley, and Jones and to attempt to void Scrushy's retirement policy with HealthSouth. Scrushy said he had never thought about that being the Campbell firm's plan, but he now thinks that is the case from recent facts the two of us had uncovered. I looked at the documents and saw that Campbell's firm, Rob Riley, and Doug Jones were among the lawyers who repesented the plaintiffs in a lawsuit against Scrushy. I asked Scrushy if they found any documents in his barn to use against him. He said there were many documents in that barn, all of which were taken by Campbell's law firm when Judge Horn issued his ruling against Scrushy. Since Scrushy isn't a lawyer, I explained to him that all Riley and Jones wanted to do was look and see what was there so they woul know what documents to take or subpoena. I explained to him that I considered Riley's and Jones's lying to him about why they wanted to go into his barn to be fraud.

(Note: Gallion contacted me on this date -- 7/29/20 -- and noted that the time frame in this passage from his book is incorrect. After double checking his appointment calendar from the period, Gallion determined the Scrushy meetings started in fall, not summer, 2018 The exact date of the initial meeting was 10/28/18.)

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

In an avalanche of errors, fake protesters appear in Birmingham neighborhood -- at the wrong house -- to "demonstrate" against publisher of banbalch.com

Protesters at the wrong house in a Birmingham neighborhood

A group of mostly black fake protesters recently appeared at a suburban Birmingham neighborhood, apparently with designs on terrorizing a "white man" -- banbalch.com publisher K.B. Forbes -- and his family. But the demonstraters' plans went slightly awry; they went to the wrong house, at the wrong address, and terrorized the wrong family. Oops!

Security footage of protesters van
Why was Forbes targeted? It's probably because he has dared to report, accurately and thoroughly, about various misdeeds at the scandal-plagued Balch Bingham law firm. But the "protest," apparently staged by paid actors (paid by Balch?), left a family -- the wrong family -- so shaken that they intend to move. From a Forbes report at banbalch.com, under the headline "Buffoons! Balch Stooges Terrorize Wrong Family at Wrong Address; Family to Move":

Last week, we, the CDLU, had a joint phone call with federal and local law enforcement. We told them that we did not know if we should laugh or cry.

We are shaking our heads in absolute disbelief.

Are Balch Bingham stooges really this stupid, really this incompetent?

On July 4th, a van load of phony protesters attempted to stage a fake demonstration against the “white man” in front of the family home of our Chief Executive Officer. (More on the “white man” in a minute.)

Problem is they terrorized the wrong family at the wrong address. The stooges allegedly blocked the family’s driveway with the rental van and were shouting at them and holding signs allegedly denouncing the “white man.”

When we spoke to law enforcement officers who had actually gone to the scene, they told us the mother and her 13 year-old child, who witnessed the incident, were shaken, traumatized, and terrified, and that the mother was a nervous wreck, absolutely “petrified.”

As the family was being terrorized, she would not hang up the phone until law enforcement arrived at her home, according to deputies.

The "protesters" did manage to terrorize somebody; it was just the wrong people. Our bad!

When we met with the innocent family almost a week later, the poor mother was still visibly upset, in shock, and suffering from trauma and tremendous fear. She and her husband let us know that after 14 years living in the neighborhood, the family was moving because of the traumatic incident. The family strongly felt they were targeted and harassed for being white, and wish to remain anonymous fearing the alleged agitators could retaliate.

The July 4th protest against the “white man” was actually the second act of the orchestrated campaign to defend Balch, according to investigators.

The first act was a Facebook Live video on July 2 from Carlos M. Chaverst, Jr. where at the end he rambles about the “white man” K.B. Forbes and his home, while labeling him WYPIPO.

Forbes, the Chief Executive Officer of our organization, the CDLU, is the son of a Hispanic immigrant, and has spurred several Civil Rights investigations.

Obviously the Balch supporting stooges did not know who Forbes was, and did not care because they probably were paid for their fake outrage.

Law enforcement still is trying to sort out what happened and who is responsible for orchestrating it -- but they already have significant leads:

While investigators were searching for the culprits behind the phony protest that terrorized and traumatized the wrong family, Bill Britt of the Alabama Political Reporter published his 1,500 word flop on July 9 portraying Balch as a victim.

Britt’s foolish and mocked narrative affirmed that the campaign defending Balch was orchestrated.

After uncovering who rented the van, from where, and when, investigators were able to connect the dots all the way to the most ardent Balch stooges at the highest levels in Alabama.

Balch Bingham is the sister-wife of Alabama Power, one of the largest employers and most powerful entities in Alabama.

The usual suspects, consultants, and goons appear to be involved in this disaster, this cluster.

We obtained the Facebook Live video of the Balch supporting stooges terrorizing the wrong family. And the video alone is an embarrassment.

          * The stooges have no idea who they are protesting, calling Forbes on social media  and on    the  video by: Forge, Forges, and Forger.
    * The stooges appear to have no idea where they are, protesting and shouting at the wrong house, the wrong address.

    * The stooges’ fake protest is for less than 2 minutes, and the live feed continues for an additional 2 minutes after the phone is dropped inside the rental van.

    * The stooges left before law enforcement had arrived.
    Last week, after Josh Moon amputated his brain for Balch in the fourth act of the orchestrated campaign, we, the CDLU, had a joint phone call with federal and local law enforcement about the terrorizing incident against the innocent family and related acts.

    We told them that we did not know if we should laugh or cry.

    And we also learned that Facebook Live personality and WYPIPO detector Carlos M. Chaverst, Jr. had been arrested by three different law enforcement agencies.

    As AL.com reported:

    In Hoover, police on June 4 obtained a warrant for Chaverst for inciting to riot, which is a misdemeanor crime. The charge stems from statements made by Chaverst on social media May 29 which authorities said threatened property damage in Hoover, police said. The Facebook Live, in part, said, “We’re going to burn that (expletive) up. We’re fixing to make Hoover our little (expletive).”
    In Homewood, Chaverst is charged with second-degree bail jumping. Under Alabama law, a person commits the crime of bail jumping in the second degree if, having been lawfully released from custody, with or without bail, upon condition that he/she will subsequently appear at a specified time and place in connection with a charge of his/her having committed any Class C felony or any misdemeanor, he/she fails to appear at the time and place. Is this the person Balch Bingham boosters wanted to attack the CDLU in hopes of gaining sympathy?

    Have they truly lost their minds?

    Sadly, some partners at Balch Bingham, their stooges, and defenders appear not to be able to understand why the firm has become the laughing stock of the legal community while losing major clients and millions in revenue to competitors.

    Terrorizing the wrong family is just one more reason to add to the list.


Monday, July 27, 2020

Attorney John P. McKleroy, who helped seek guardian for Joann Bashinsky in probate court, failed to disclose criminal conviction to Golden Flake board of directors

John P. McKleroy
 A veteran lawyer, who helped file a petition for a guardian or conservator in the probate case of Birmingham philanthropist Joann Bashinsky, has a conviction for domestic violence in his background, according to a report at Alabama Today. John P. McKleroy, formerly of the Spain Gillon law firm in Birmingham, was arrested in 2006 and pled guilty to third-degree domestic violence and harassment in Tuscaloosa County District Court. Writes Apryl Marie Fogel at Alabama Today:

If you’ve been following along, you know that we’re learning together about the dysfunction, potential corruption, and madness involved in Alabama’s conservatorship and guardianship system. One of the missing components in my coverage to date has been addressing a frequent question, “How does this happen to someone?” Today, let’s explore that.

The story that sparked this series was that of longtime philanthropist and heir to the Golden Flake company, Joann Bashinsky (aka Mrs. B or Mama B).

In her case, Mrs. B’s forced and contested conservatorship began after firing two longtime employees John P. McKleroy and Patty Townsend, who seemingly “betrayed her.” The day they were fired, after months of insubordination and actions that went against the express wishes and interest of Mrs. B, the two petitioned the court for an “emergency order.” Today, we’ll look at McKleroy’s role in this.
McKleroy and Towsend filed an emergency order. What did they have to gain? Access and control of tens of millions once they took away Mrs. B’s voice and votes on the boards of her company and foundations. What did they have to lose? Not much or so they would have thought, if not for Mrs. B aggressively fighting their efforts and telling her story publicly.

What kind of man would do this? Well, the same man who would plead guilty to third-degree domestic violence and harassment, as McKleroy did. The police report detailing his abuse describes his violent assault saying, “while in a domestic altercation,” McKleroy did, “push, choke, and slap the victim.”

Court documents related to the McKleroy case can be viewed at this link. The Alabama State Bar is supposed to discipline wayward lawyers, so where was it on this issue? Out to lunch, apparently. In 2018, 12 years after McKleroy's conviction, the Bar honored him as a 50-year member, seemingly in good standing. That suggests the Bar made little effort to learn about McKleroy's criminal history or chose to ignore it.

What kind of court punishment did McKleroy receive? Reports Alabama Today:

According to a letter from his doctor and the court order, he went on to get a minimum of one year and three months of professional treatment to “address the psychological issues related to his episode of loss of control.” The clinical and forensic psychologist at the time stated that “he probably would not have sought treatment without legal pressure.”

Mrs. B was never made aware of McKleroy’s violent altercation with a member of his immediate family, (we are not identifying out of respect for the victim), the arrest, his need for therapy (including a court-ordered additional six months beyond his plea agreement), or his two years of probation. When I spoke to Mrs. B about this, she was disappointed. I asked her if she felt he should have told her about all of this, and she said, “Absolutely!”

How solid was McKleroy's standing in the Golden Flake hierarchy?

Bashinsky trusted McKleroy so explicitly before this betrayal, that when drawing up an update to her will, he advised her that her late husband, the founder of Golden Flake Sloan Bashinsky, had included him in his final will. He indicated he was a beneficiary, not just the executor. Mrs. B wanted to honor her husband’s wishes. She allowed him to include himself in her will at what he told her was the same amount as in Mr. Bashinsky’s will. What McKleroy wrote in her will, on her behalf, was that “My good friend John McKleroy shall receive,” and it ended up being 2% of her entire estate.

After firing McKleroy and Townsend, Mrs. B told Alabama Today that an examination of her late husband’s records indicated that Mckleroy had not been honest with her about that. No record of those wishes existed. The sad irony is that a significant component of their emergency request was a concern that Mrs. B wouldn’t be able to fulfill the bequests of her will.

McKleroy has made millions during his time with Golden Flake and the Bashinskys.

Reading the timeline presented in court documents, the only logical assumption is that McKleroy had been planning this for some time. He also had crafted a strong narrative in defense of his actions. Initial reports by the court-ordered Guardian ad-litem and social worker demonstrated facts contrary to what the filings by McKleroy claim. These include false accusations about Mrs. B’s cognitive abilities and her understanding of her financial investments. The filing falsely claims that Mrs. B needed to be “coached” on her requests to move money out of Level Four financial advisors, but she was able to explain the request and the justification clearly to the two court-ordered neutral parties.

According to his report to the court, Robert Squire Gwin told him just days after the two employees filed their motion, “Mrs. B[ashinsky] voiced her strong opinion that she was ‘totally disappointed and disgusted with John McKleroy and Patty Townsend’ since they both have been long time advisors over many years. She stated that she ‘felt betrayed by these former employees and advisors.'”

The court filing also stated that “Ms. Bashinsky was able to identify relevant dates and events in her life to Gwin and Sellers. Both the court-ordered guardian-ad-litem and social worker submitted statements saying that Mrs. B was lucid, able to talk. They indicated she was able to describe in detail the transfer of funds that is at the heart of this case. You see, one of the most significant components of their emergency order and one of the reasons they were fired is because the financial advisors at a Level 4 Dallas based company refused to comply with multiple requests by Mrs. B to diversify her account. Orders that the two former employees attest she didn’t understand or ask for herself.

McKleroy claimed in court that an emergency existed. The state Supreme Court said in their decision dismissing the order for conservatorship that no such emergency was indicated.
On Friday, July 24, 2020 Mrs. B hosted a board meeting, that included both McKleroy and Townsend as the other two board members, during which she directly addressed the violent criminal charges that McKleroy pled guilty to. She told me after the meeting, “I find it atrocious what Mr. McKleroy did. I feel strongly that he had a duty to disclose his actions to the board at the time it happened. At this point, it doesn’t surprise me that Patty (Townsend) isn’t disturbed by the news, but I don’t feel that this particular member’s actions are a good representation of my family’s boards.

My husband would be deeply ashamed. In light of this new information, I asked that he be removed as a director, but the other board member seems to think that those actions are excusable. In the words of Mr. McKleroy, “it was just a misdemeanor”.

Does Mrs. B need protection? Turns out that maybe so, maybe from the very people trying to steal her rights and silence her voice. After all, McKleroy’s only response to his heinous violent acts towards a loved one, “it was just a misdemeanor.”

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Alleged gunman in shooting at New Jersey home of federal judge Esther Salas had connections to Russia and left a string of pro-Donald Trump writings

U.S. Judge Esther Salas

The alleged gunman in the shooting of a federal judge's family -- killing her son and critically injuring her husband -- had ties to Russia and left an extensive string of pro-Trump writings, according to a number of reports. Roy Den Hollander, described as an "anti-feminist" lawyer, now is considered a suspect in the recent murder of another men's-rights activistFrom an article at The Atlantic:

Roy Den Hollander, the self-described “anti-feminist” attorney who authorities say is the chief suspect in the shootings of the son and the husband of a federal judge in New Jersey, attacked that judge by name in misogynistic, racist writings he wrote over a period of years and posted in bulk on the Internet Archive. Den Hollander, who describes himself as a Trump volunteer in his writings, called the judge an “affirmative action” case who affiliated with those who wanted “to convince America that whites, especially white males, were barbarians, and all those of a darker skin complexion were victims.”

Esther Salas’s 20-year-old son was killed in the attack at their home on Sunday, and her husband was wounded. Den Hollander was later found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound in Rockland, New York. Den Hollander’s insults toward Salas were included in a 2,028-page collection of writings he posted online in 2019 under the username Roy17den, a handle that mirrored his Twitter account, @roy17den, and the email address he used both in personal letters and in court filings.

“Female judges didn’t bother me as long as they were middle age or older black ladies,” he writes when discussing a lawsuit he filed that went before Judge Salas, the first Hispanic woman appointed a federal judge in New Jersey. “They seemed to have an understanding of how life worked and were not about to be conned by any foot dragging lawyer. Latinas, however, were usually a problem—driven by an inferiority complex.”

Den Hollander wrote a number of political pieces, which tended to be highly critical of Democrats (Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama) and glowing about Republicans (Donald Trump):

Along with the attacks on Salas, Den Hollander’s writings also go after President Barack Obama (who he said has an “obsession to turn America into a banana republic”), Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor (who he claimed was “angry that nobody had invited her to her high school senior prom”), Hillary Clinton (whose supporters were “teary-eyed, sad-sack, PC loonies watching their power of intolerance go down the drain”), and an Obama appointee (whom he describes as part of “that Orwellian party of feminists, ethnics, Muslims, illegals and queers who think they are superior to everyone else, especially white males.”)

In contrast, he writes in the same sprawling document that he was a volunteer for the presidential campaign of Donald Trump, who he said “was telling the truth about illegal aliens in his bid for the Presidency.” Den Hollander describes “leaving the law library in the early afternoon for Trump Tower, 12 blocks up Fifth Avenue, to make telephone calls during the primaries and the general election.” Recounting his time working for the campaign, he says most of his fellow volunteers “were aging baby boomers like me."

Den Hollander's legal work often reeked of hatred for women:

Den Hollander, who was 72, held deeply misogynistic beliefs about women and filed a series of lawsuits against what he considered unfair advantages they had over men. One of those suits, in which he argued that it was unconstitutional for women not to be subject to military draft, reached Salas’s court in 2019. Salas did not throw out the suit, as many of Den Hollander’s previous cases had been. She instead allowed the lawsuit to proceed through the court system. But Den Hollander was upset by what he considered to be Salas’s delaying of the case. He complained that she allowed the Department of Justice to file its fourth motion to dismiss the case, suggesting she was “trying to keep this case in her court until a weatherman showed her which way the legal winds were blowing.”

“Salas clearly wanted to further her career by moving up the judicial ladder to the Court of Appeals or maybe even the Supreme Court,” he writes. “After all, there was now a Latina seat in the form of Sotomayor on the Court.”

Judge Salas came from a disadvantaged background. She is the daughter of a Cuban immigrant; her home burned down when she was 10, and her family lost everything. Salas eventually earned her bachelor’s and law degrees from Rutgers University, became a public defender, and was elected president of New Jersey’s Hispanic Bar Association. “For this little girl from Union City to grow up and become a U.S. District Judge—it’s beyond words,” she told a local reporter after she became a federal judge in 2006.

Den Hollander, who turned his hatred of women into a string of media appearances over more than a decade, saw Salas’s biography differently. “It was the usual effort to blame a man and turn someone into super girl—daddy abandoned us, we were indigent, which means they lived off of the taxpayer, but we overcame all odds,” he writes in one of the documents posted online last year. He describes Salas’s decade as a public defender as “representing lumpen proletariat ne’er-do-wells.” Her “one accomplishment,” he says, was being a high-school cheerleader.

He also attacks Justice Sotomayor, saying she was “52 years old, prime age for a Feminazi.” His voluminous writings—more than 10,000 pages of PDFs—show a deep sense of grievance against women, especially his mother, who he claims told him, at age 4, “I wish I had listened to your father and never had you!” He calls her a witch, a “Nazi loon,” and “another malevolent female.” He also describes kissing girls in third grade frequently enough that their parents complained to their teacher. The document, one of several he uploaded to the Internet Archive, is a disturbing but by now common coda to high-profile incidents of gun violence: the suspected shooter leaving a trail of arguments and anger in random corners of the web. Many of them involve a hatred of women and people of color, and connect broad claims about the world with very personal claims of grievance.

“All my life I saw other people, even strangers in the street, as potential enemies with whom conflict seemed more likely than cooperation,” he writes. “I understood that, except for my few friends, I didn’t like people because they scared me; and when someone is afraid, he hates others for causing him the humiliation and himself for allowing it. But where did this ever-present fear come from—my genes or the way my mother raised me? I opted for the culpability of my mother with some assistance from my father.”

Den Hollander claimed to have married a Russian woman, and that ended badly:

He also writes viciously about a Russian woman he says he married, calling her a “mafia prostitute.” Den Hollander writes at length about the time he spent living in Russia, including time he says he spent working for Kroll Associates. At one point, he describes difficulties he said he was having with the U.S. government, claiming it had “confiscated” his U.S. citizenship. “Boy, was I glad I didn’t vote for Obama—wrote-in Putin instead,” he writes.

“Perhaps the Violence Against Women’s Act could get my citizenship back,” he added. “All I’d have to do is date an American girl then accuse her of abuse.”

Some of his interest in Russia is clearly tied to his support of the president. On the question of meddling in the 2016 election, he writes that, during the debate over Clinton’s email server, he had “what I thought was a great idea to help Trump.” If Russian intelligence had hacked the server, he would try to use an old Russian contact to dig up her emails. “So I contacted a GRU buddy requesting a few copies of the bleached or classified emails, if they had them. Telling him, I’d make them public through my media contacts.” His contact, he claims, said that GRU didn’t have the emails, which he took as a sign that “they did not hack the server or they wanted Hillary to win.”