Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Docket in Jessica Garrison case shows she filed for a default judgment three times, twice while I was in jail -- suggesting she had no intention of going to trial

Jessica Garrison and Luther Strange
Alabama GOP operative Jessica Medeiros Garrison filed at least three default-judgment applications in her defamation lawsuit against the Legal Schnauzer blog and me. Two were filed while I was wrongfully incarcerated in Shelby County because of the Rob Riley/Liberty Duke case. At least one more was filed within roughly six months after my wife, Carol, and I had been forced to leave our home of 25 years in Birmingham because of a likely wrongful foreclosure that left us in Missouri, where we currently reside.

This information comes from the docket in the Garrison case (Number CV-2013-903427.00), which was produced among responsive pleadings in our pending federal lawsuit against Garrison, Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange, and others in a wrongful foreclosure/defamation action. We call it "The House Case," as opposed to "The Jail Case," which is on appeal in the Eleventh Circuit because of trial judge R. David Proctor and his refusal to follow black-letter law that requires court clerks to execute service for in forma pauperis (indigent) litigants such as us. (Docket from the Garrison v. Shuler state case is embedded at the end of this post.)

The docket, which I don't think I've ever seen because I either was in jail, in the midst of a fighting a foreclosure, or forced to live like a refugee in Missouri, is filled with interesting information -- even though some of it is not perfectly clear. I'm still trying to digest the information, so I'm not certain about all it reveals. But here is some of what we learn:

* There is no sign that I ever received three days' notice from Garrison of her default application and hearing, as required by Alabama law -- spelled out in a case styled Abernathy v. Green Tree Servicing (Ala. Civ. App., 2010). As we've been reporting for months, the docket shows Garrison's $3.5-million default judgment is void, as a matter of law, and can be attacked as such at any time.

* While the docket hardly is a model of clarity, it appears to show that Garrison and her lawyer, Bill Baxley, never even sent notification of the default application/hearing, and it certainly was not received. What does this suggest? It suggests, to me, that Garrison and Baxley intentionally avoided notification because they did not want me at the default hearing. Obviously, it's easier to prevail on such a matter when you have no opposition.

* The court record suggests Garrison's lawsuit was about obtaining a default judgment all along -- and nothing else. Why? The docket shows she first applied for a default judgment on October 21, 2013, less than one month from my arrest (on September 23, 2013) related to the Riley/Duke case. I had not been lawfully served -- and Judge Don Blankenship eventually would agree, granting my motion to quash service -- and I had not even had the 30 days provided by law to answer the complaint, but Garrison filed for a default judgment anyway. Does that mean she was trying to use my incarceration to her advantage? It sure looks that way to me.

Garrison next filed for a default judgment on February 20, 2014, again while I was in jail. I never received notice of a default application or hearing while in jail, and the docket reflects that.

* All this time, there is no sign in the docket that Garrison was trying to prove her defamation claim in the usual way -- via a scheduling meeting, a discovery schedule, or any actual discovery. There was no sign of any effort to prove my reporting about her extramarital affair with Luther Strange was false or defamatory. Does that mean they knew my reporting was not false or defamatory, and Garrison had no grounds for her lawsuit? That's what the docket strongly suggests -- and the filing of such an abusive lawsuit is the kind of thing that can cost a lawyer her bar card.

* Garrison filed for default No. 3 on September 17, 2014, roughly two months after we had been forced to vacate our home because of a foreclosure that almost certainly was contrary to law? Does this indicate the foreclosure and the default (and possibly my incarceration) were all a coordinated effort among Garrison, Baxley, Riley, Duke, and likely others -- designed to get Carol and me out of town so Garrison could get her $3.5-million judgment with no opposition? The answer appears to be yes, suggesting Garrison (like any good Republican) likes to cheat. The docket suggests her lawsuit was the legal equivalent of catching fish in a barrel.

* A hearing on default application No. 3 -- again, with no sign of notice to me -- was set for October 15, 2014, but the docket shows that was continued. It does not show a new date, and in fact, the docket does not show that a hearing ever was scheduled or conducted. An entry on December 16, 2014 reads "disposed by separate order." That suggests default was granted, but news apparently did not get to Garrison because, on January 7, 2015, she filed a motion for an order rendering judgment by default. The record shows such an order was rendered and entered six days later, on January 13, 2015.

How big a mess is all of this? The docket shows that three default applications were filed, and the opposing party never received notice on any of them. While Baxley and Garrison have whined in court documents that they couldn't find me to provide notice, they sought default twice while I was in jail -- so they certainly knew where I was then. (Gee, Baxley and Garrison wouldn't lie, would they?) The docket suggests default was granted, even though there is no sign that a hearing was conducted.

So how did Blankenship come up with the $3.5-million figure for damages? Well, the docket and other documents produced in "The House Case" shine interesting light on that, as we will explain in an upcoming post.

(To be continued)


Anonymous said...

Why would she file for a default judgment while you were in jail? Sounds stupid to me.

legalschnauzer said...

Sounds stupid to me, too. And she did it twice. The docket is fairly lengthy, and it's not an easy read, but the whole thing seems to be a mass quantity of stupidity.

Anonymous said...

Let me see if I have this straight: She filed for a default judgment before you'd even had the required 30 days to respond. That sounds like this never was meant to be a real lawsuit from the outset.

legalschnauzer said...

You have it straight, and I think your conclusion is correct. I can't see a way to reach any other conclusion. In a real court, a lawyer should be hit with sanctions for filing a default judgment so quickly.

Anonymous said...

Just because you refused to monitor the docket or inform the court of a current mailing address of a case in which you had been served proper notice, doesn't mean you didn't get a three day warning. In fact the judge ruled that you had plenty of notice and that it was your own fault that you ignored proceedings and gave thcourt no forwarding address.

He specifically rejected all three of these excuses " I either was in jail, in the midst of a fighting a foreclosure, or forced to live like a refugee in Missour" - and ruled that further delay prejudiced the plaint. Your lawyer made the best case possible, and it was unpersuasive.

You have missed your chance to appeal his ruling, and the judgment is not voidable. Why not post the order, it's very clear.

Anonymous said...

God, I knew this case sounded squirelly, but I had no idea it was this bad. I've only scanned the docket, but it looks like a joke. It makes our whole court system look like a joke.

Anonymous said...

The judge said he had at least 60 days. Post the order.

Anonymous said...

I seem to recall reading somewhere that Bill Baxley was quoted as saying he tried to talk Jessica Garrison out of filing this lawsuit, blah, blah. This makes it look like he never intended to conduct a lawsuit, and he probably lied about what he told Garrison. Looks like a sham to me.

legalschnauzer said...

Excellent point, @10:48. Baxley was quoted along those lines at several news outlets, and he's even quoted about that in a court transcript, which I will be reporting on soon. I agree with you that it appears "Dollar Bill" lied his ass off, which should be no surprise to anyone familiar with how he conducts his affairs.

legalschnauzer said...

Looks like the "Know Nothings" have shown up again. I will cut them a little slack here because I get a kick out of making them look like fools, which isn't hard.

10:39 -- I've posted the order multiple times. If you've seen it, you saw it here. The docket shows the judge is lying. I know the actual law means nothing to you, but it's clear the issue isn't whether notice of a default judgment was sent, it's whether the party accused of default receives no notice. In this instance, there is no sign in the docket that notice was sent, and it certainly was not received. I know you can't be bothered to read the law, but the burden for giving notice of a default applictaion/hearing is on Garrison, and she failed.

10:38 -- Your first paragraph is pure nonsense. I've posted the order umpteen times, and I know what it says. That's why the docket is so important because it shows Blankenship was full of feces, and Garrison never had any intention of litigating the case. It was a sham from start to finish. Now, go back to your dream world and leave sentient beings alone.

Anonymous said...

Roger, you've clearly won the moral high ground... except there's no one up there but you and your challenged wife. When it counted, you blew the case. Of course she didn't want to go to trial -- she wanted you to take down the defamatory post. You could never prove that what you published was true. Essentially you were a patsy for some powerful folks who pushed you off a cliff when they were done with you. Not that you didn't deserve it.

You don't understand how the legal system actually works in a number very fundamental ways. You make the same mistakes repeatedly, like your incontinent dog that kept shitting inside the house. Either everyone is out to get you, or you're a fucking crazy idiot. I'll vote for the latter.

Stick with Ashley Madison, Roger. That's more your speed than trying to ruin your betters.

Davey Hay said...

Here you go again, you ignorant moran,

Roger the reason you continue to fail at life is because you take NO RESPONSIBILITY for your actions...I mean ZERO.

I will make these suggestions again;
Be nice to will pay off.
Think before your case I would advise at least a week to allow your minimus cranium the time to make some basic conclusions.
Realize the world isn't against just piss people off.

Your read of this is wrong as usual and your vietnam war era education is doing you no favors.

Now go get your shine box...

legalschnauzer said...

For those interested, here are the two orders Blankenship made in the case. They've been run here several times before:

(1) Order on damages re: default judgment:

(2) Order upholding default judgment:

In No. 2, Blankenship never says I received notice, never says I received three days notice as required by law, and never says it was Garrison's responsibility to make sure notice was given. Just shows that the judge is incompetent, corrupt, or both.

In No. 1, Blankenship indicates he concocted most of his $3.5-million judgment based on claims I had reported Luther Strange was the biological father of Garrison's son. One problem: I never reported any such thing. Again, astounding corruption and/or incompetence. These are your tax dollars at work, folks.

legalschnauzer said...

Oh great, we've heard from "Davy Hay," a strong contender for worst attorney in Alabama. How stupid is he? He calls me a "moran."

A couple of questions:

* Are you familiar with the Abernathy and McConico cases? Please cite their holdings. Hint: They were critical to getting the default judgment in my case overturned, but you mentioned neither one in your motion to the court. (See here: While would a licensed attorney not know about these cases and fail to mention them?

* Can you name one thing Blankenship got right, with citations to law, in his order upholding the default judgment?

Let's see what kind of "lawyer" you really are. I'll be waiting for your answers.

Anonymous said...

The pot (Jeff Sessions) calling the kettle (Obama) black:
"Obama began his clemency initiative in 2014 as a way to shorten the sentences of drug offenders given what he considered to be unduly harsh sentences. That effort has felt a new urgency since the election of Donald Trump, who has named as his attorney general one of the biggest critics of Obama's use of commutations. 'The president is playing a dangerous game to advance his political ideology,' Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., said after Obama granted a single-day record 214 commutations in August."

No clemency for Don Siegelman, of course.

legalschnauzer said...

@11:16 --

You claim I don't know how the legal system works? Hah, that's a laugh! Let's look at your own "knowledge":

(1) You say Garrison wanted me to take down "the defamatory posts." Well, publications can only be defamatory if found so at a jury trial, on the merits. That never happened here, so as a matter of law, my posts are neither false nor defamatory. You should know that, but you don't

(2) You claim I "never could prove that what I published was true." You seem to forget the burden of proof is on the plaintiff (Garrison). She had to prove that my reports were false, and she obviously could not do that, so she made sure there was no trial. To repeat: Plaintiff holds the burden of proof. Most third graders know that, but you do not.

No wonder you didn't sign a name to your post. If I were as stupid as you, I would leave a comment at all.

legalschnauzer said...


Forgot to include your motion, which makes no mention of "Abernathy" and "McConico" cases, which were key to getting Garrison's default judgment declared void, which it is as a matter of law. Is this the kind of con game you pull on all your clients?

legalschnauzer said...

1:41 -- Obama has been consistently horrible on justice issues. It was reported back in 08 and early 09 that Bushies, before leaving White House, used FBI to get compromising video or other evidence to blackmail Obama. Wayne Madsen has reported on Obama's apparent fondness for gay bath houses in Chicago. I think Madsen probably is right, and that's why Obama kept the DOJ from investigating Bush admin and why Obama will do nothing about Trump and Russia.

Obama's big action is to tell Putin to "cut it out." Putin must have been terrified by that.

The abominable mess that our country is heading into should be blamed largely on Obama. I voted for the man twice, and I appreciate the many good things he has done (particularly keeping us out of Great Depression 2.0). But his justice record hardly could be any worse.

Anonymous said...

LS--1:41 here: Primary reason I posted that was to point out Sessions--penultimate hypocrite--as the speaker, not as a critique of Obama's justice record. I'll save that for another time. If you think Obama and his Attorney General picks were disappointing, you of all people should know what a nightmare Sessions will be.

11:16 said...

Jesus Christ, you are dumb. If you had shown up for the hearings you might have had your trial. As it was you didn't get shit because you didn't know what your were doing. You went against the advice of an excellent lawyer and paid the price. You live in the same fantasy land as the people that claim Hilary won the election. But Fantasyland is part of Disney World, not a town in Alabama.

Start taking some responsibility for your life, Shuler. You're never to blame for anything, are you? Do you really think anyone would both conspiring against you? You're a cuck and a clown.

Anonymous said...

Trump comes to power January 20th. That's the day we start really dealing with assholes like you. Get in the line and shut the fuck up. We'll have citizens' patrols in every town and city in this country. We'll clean things up once and for all. You will learn to shut your dirty lying mouth.

Anonymous said...

I heard Jessica Garrison will be kicking your nuts into your head come January 20th. How is that gonna feel?

Anonymous said...

A majority of Democratic and independent voters made clear that they don’t foresee Hillary Clinton in their 2020 vision of the presidential election, according to a USA Today/Suffolk University poll released Wednesday.

Sixty-two percent of Democrats and independents surveyed said the twice-failed presidential candidate shouldn’t mount another campaign in 2020, and only 23 percent would be excited by her campaign if she did.

Lock her up.

Anonymous said...

I think you mentioned that the judge was sick and not in the court room when your attorney represented you. For all you know the man behind the curtain could have made the default judgement and the court clerk stamped the judges name.

Anonymous said...

The left in America is demanding that the Electoral College system put into place in 1787 be scrapped. But there is a hidden reason for this. Very few commentators will tell you that the heart of liberalism in America today is based on race. It permeates almost every issue. That white men have set up a system of oppression. That system must be destroyed. White men have largely abandoned the Democrats, and the left believes it's because of racism that they want to punish minorities, keep them down.

Summing up: Left wants power taken away from the white establishment. They want a profound change in the way America is run. Taking voting power away from the white precincts is the quickest way to do that.

legalschnauzer said...

@2:47 -- Yes, someone (probably Davy Hay) told me that Blankenship was not there that day and did the hearing via teleconference. You are quite astute to remember that. Who do you mean by "the man behind the curtain"? I agree that someone, in Blankenship's absence, could have made the order; the order could have been made in advance. Just curious who you think that person might have been.

legalschnauzer said...

2:42 -- Jessica Garrison is going to be kicking my nuts come Jan. 20? How do you figure that?

legalschnauzer said...

Question for 2:34 --

How many events do you appear for when you don't receive some sort of notice that they are taking place? Do you show up at Bryant-Denny Stadium for a Bama game, even when there isn't one on the schedule? You have some sort of ESPN that tells you things are going to happen whether you get notice of them or not?

What part of "notice was not sent or received" do you not understand? Is it that hard to grasp?

2:34 said...

Oh we are sooo sick of your fucking excuses! Cry cry cry Roger! Boo hoo!

Are you being conspired against or are you a fucking fuck up?

Eight years on its clear your a cuck-fuck-up. You know what that is? It's a man who is a incompetent whining bitch ie Roger Shuler.

Pour some turkey gravy into the funnel you stick up your wife's ass. Merry Cuck-Christmas

legalschnauzer said...

I don't normally publish comments like the rubbish above, but decided to run this one, mainly for educational purposes -- so someone could educate me.

What is this business with "cuck" this and "cuck" that? Is it some sort of strange right-wing term, or is it a term somebody uses when they have no other meaning in their lives. Does it have something to do with the Ku Klux Klan?

If anyone cares to interpret or analyze, please fire away.

Are these the kind of people, along with Putin, who put Trump in the White House? Or is a wannabe political ass?

Anonymous said...

A lie is a statement that the stating party believes to be false and that is made with the intention to deceive. The practice of communicating lies is called lying, and a person who communicates a lie may be termed a liar.

Anonymous said...

Cuck is short for cuckhold or cuckholded. Pretty sure with your journalistic background you can figure this out. It has nothing to do with any right wing or KKK type. It originated out of the British

My only observation / comment, in light of the slew of negative posts on here criticizing you, is have you ever won a civil lawsuit filed against you? It seems that you have had several civil cases filed against you, each of which ended with a default judgment with you claiming the lawyers and judges screwed you over. Once? Ok, it happens. Twice? Maybe, but not likely. More than twice? Nope. If this happens to you that often, it isn't the system, it is you and your stubborn refusal to accept the system requires certain minimum actions, and you refused to comply.

Argue all you want about void orders, lack of due process, etc. As long as you continue to flip off judges, you are going to continue to get screwed when you represent yourself. I read your post about David Hay. That is a complaint against a lawyer, not the judge.

Good luck with your tilting at windmills.

legalschnauzer said...

@8:40 --

I just did a little research and learned that "cuck" is part of the language of the "alt right " so right off the bat, you are lying about that.

Not surprisingly, you can't get anything else right:

* Yes, I have won a civil claim and reported on it here. Look it up.

* No, lawsuits against me have not always ended in default judgments. None have ever ended in a lawful default judgment. Look it up, lazy piece of crap.

* Your 1-2-3 game might be cute in your shallow mind, but let's see if you can pass this test: Tell me about five determinative judicial rulings in any case involving me and tell me how the judge got it right. You claim to know how the system works. Well, let's see if you produce any sort of lucid answer to the challenge I raise here. Can you even coherently discuss the law? I doubt it, but maybe you can surprise me. Give it a shot, dick wad.

* Your last paragraph indicates you agree our system is filled with crooked judges. A judge takes an oath to uphold the law, whether a party has "flipped him off" (which I have't) or not. Any judge who rules against a party because said party has written critically about him, is violating his oath and violating the law.

Chew on those windmills for a while, lying, fudge packing asshole.

Anonymous said...

Two words, Roger: Davy Fucking Hay

Trump 2020 said...

Like most people in my state I voted for Trump. No regrets so far, not a one. We're going to see a revolution soon and people like you Roger will have to work for once. Lazy asshole.

Anonymous said...

The world is a hostile place, Roger. Is there any greater proof of that then the rise of someone like Donald J. Trump? We would not have needed someone like him to run as President if it were not for the abuses of power and privilege that are now routine among our elites. He was one of them and has sucked at the teat of power, abusing women and drugs and using his wealth to get what he wants. Now he fights for us. That is why voters here and in Alabama turned out in record numbers and make him the next President.

Anonymous said...

If it was clear anyone had "no intention of going to trial" it was you, Shuler. You refused to appear at deposition, after being properly notified, and when the judge ordered you to after a motion to compel, you still didn't show up.

Then you willfully refused to update the court with any new address and also failed to forward your mail from your old address (you could have filled our a forwarding card like any other mortal)to any new one.

The judge gave you break after break. Even after the third request for default, which was granted, you had an opportunity to show up for the trial set down for damages and move to have the default overturned. That trial was continued and you had still more time before a default judgement was recorded.

You had notice of this claim against you, you were served and you knew about it. The other notices were served to your address on file with the court.

Eventually you got a lawyer who tried very hard to get the judge to excuse you for being crazy, and he did not succeed despite making the best case possible. When he couldn't get the default overturned, he even got you a settlement, remarkably easy on you- one dollar and removal of specific offending stories. You are so crazy you refused it, causing even your lawyer to understand you had no use for his good advice, and he should stop wasting his time on you.

You are always looking around for great enemies allied against you, Shuler, but you your own worst enemy.

Anonymous said...

Every time Roger posts more legal analysis, I'm

amazed at how logical and thorough his claims are. It's clear

to me that he's done a ton of research and knows his way around a case book.

So when the boo birds show up to try to pick away at

his posts, I only laugh at their futile attempts to tie Roger in knots.

I know the smack down is coming from the Schnauz and it never fails

to live up to expectations!

Roger, keep doing what you're doing. Like many have said, it's your blog.

Only those with something to lose or hide cannot appreciate what's

going on here. Everyone else wants to see you come out on top and for

each wrong to finally be righted. From the silent majority, we've

really got your back and have a happy holidays!

Davy Hay said...


I am still waiting on payment in full for the last legal work I did for you, why would I play find the citation with you again? You are a kook and a moran.

I have one for know how to keep an asshole in suspense?? I will tell you tomorrow.

Now go get your shine box...

legalschnauzer said...


We had a contingency agreement, and you failed to recover, so you aren't owed a dime. Most contingency lawyers fight like hell to get money out of the other side because that's how they get paid. But you didn't do that, which raises this question: How did you get paid, and who paid you? It certainly wasn't me.

And my advice to anyone looking for a lawyer, and this is based on firsthand experience: "Stay away from Davy Hay." That rhymes; might look good on a billboard, or as title for a new blog.

legalschnauzer said...

@11:47 --

Thanks so much for the kind words. They certainly are refreshing. Best wishes to you and yours during the holiday season and beyond.

Your comment put this thought in my head: How many of the loony commenters here consider themselves Christian, but their actions are about as far from Christ-like as you can get.

They actually seem to favor injustice. Odd, because I seem to recall that Jesus had quite a bit to say in the New Testament about injustice. I guess these folks skipped over that part.

legalschnauzer said...

@9:52 --

You refer multiple times to a trial, and there was no trial. Any dolt can check the docket I've provided and see that. Are you a sub-dolt? Apparently so, which means there is no reason to respond to your other rubbish. As George Carlin said, "Garbage in, garbage out."

legalschnauzer said...

@9:22 --

You are so blinded by Trump that you don't even recognize the absurdity in your own comment. You say you are satisfied with Trump, and he hasn't even taken office yet. Do you see how stupid that sounds or are just scratching your head?

legalschnauzer said...

@9:22 --

Congrats for maybe the most unintentionally hysterical comment of the year:

"Two words, Roger: Davy Fucking Hay"

Read that closely and see if you can figure out why I'm still rolling on the floor. Geez, the stupidity blows the mind, but I kind of enjoy exposing your knuckle draggers.