Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Neighbor's attack on U.S. Sen. Rand Paul reminds me of the felony assault our Birmingham neighbor, Mike McGarity, committed against me with a roadside sign


Rand Paul and Rene Boucher
(From therightscoop.com)
I never expected to have much in common with U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) -- I certainly do not share his politics -- but now we have this: The senator and your humble blogger both have been physically assaulted by next-door neighbors.

Paul was getting off a riding lawn mower last Friday at his home in Bowling Green, KY, when neighbor Rene Boucher tackled him from behind, causing five broken ribs, lung bruises, and facial lacerations. Boucher is charged with misdemeanor assault, but that almost surely will be upgraded to a felony, given the severity of Paul's injuries. Ironically, both men are doctors -- Paul, an ophthalmologist, and Boucher, a anesthesiologist -- although press reports indicate neither practices medicine now.

The men have lived next door to each other for 17 years, and the assault apparently was sparked by simmering disputes over landscaping and property lines, according to reports last night. (See here and here.) From a report at The New York Times:

The violent altercation last week that left Senator Rand Paul nursing bruised lungs and broken ribs began over a landscaping dispute between the senator and his longtime next-door neighbor, according to neighbors and three Kentucky Republicans familiar with what transpired.

The precise provenance of the dispute was still a matter of disagreement on Monday. But the back story of the fracas began to come into focus and with it, the realization that Mr. Paul’s injuries could keep him from Washington, where Republicans in the Senate hold only a slim majority, for some time.

Mr. Paul had just stepped off a riding lawn mower on Friday when Rene Boucher, a retired anesthesiologist who lived next door, charged and tackled him. Because Mr. Paul was wearing sound-muting earmuffs, he did not realize Mr. Boucher was coming, according to one of the Kentucky Republicans and a friend familiar with the altercation.

Paul's injuries are severe enough that he is having trouble breathing. It all apparently stems from landscaping issues. Reports The Times:

Mr. Paul, 54, has long stood out in the well-to-do gated neighborhood south of Bowling Green, Ky., that he calls home. The senator grows pumpkins on his property, composts and has shown little interest for neighborhood regulations.

But the spectacle of the incident — one former doctor attacking another in broad daylight — was altogether different. Competing explanations of the origins of the drama cited stray yard clippings, newly planted saplings and unraked leaves. . . .

Neighbors said it was well known that the men had strongly divergent political views — Mr. Paul is a libertarian who identifies as a Republican; Mr. Boucher is a registered Democrat. But they said the dispute had more to do with long-simmering tensions over their adjacent properties than politics.

I can identify with much of this. Mike McGarity, our former Birmingham neighbor with an extensive criminal record, once assaulted me by hitting me in the back with a roadside sign. It left a bleeding gash on my back, which likely would have been worse except it was a fairly cool fall day and I was wearing a heavy sweatshirt. Such an assault with a "dangerous instrument," under Alabama law, is a felony. But Shelby County officials insisted on treating it as a misdemeanor, so I did not file charges. I reported on the assault in a November 2007 post:

I was the victim of a felony assault in October 2006. My troublesome neighbor, Mike McGarity, essentially stalked me and then hit me in the back with a roadside sign, leaving a bleeding abrasion. There was an eye witness to the attack.

Mike McGarity
 As I've noted in other posts, McGarity has the trappings of a normal suburban soccer dad--wife, two kids, nice house, job at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama. But after he filed a bogus lawsuit against me, I conducted a little research on his background and discovered that he has at least eight criminal convictions in his background. (How in God's name do you get and keep a job at a reputable employer like Blue Cross and Blue Shield with a record like that?)

We will go into considerable detail later on the assault itself and actual Alabama law that governs such offenses. (We also will look into how BC/BS came to hire someone with a big-time criminal record.) But for now, suffice to say that this assault clearly was a felony
.
Carol and I lived next door to McGarity for more than 15 years. I can recall often being concerned that, while doing yard work, I would be attacked by the loon next door -- much as Rand Paul was. In fact, I often would mow our yard while keeping one eye on the mower and the other on what might be lurking next door. As it turns out, McGarity did not assault me on my property. Here are more details from a June 2011 post:

What did I do to incur McGarity's wrath? I walked to the entrance of our neighborhood to remove signs (for-sale signs, garage-sale signs, etc.) that had been unlawfully placed in the right-of-way and were obstructing the view of drivers trying to pull onto a busy highway. I was trying to keep someone from getting hurt or possibly killed. But McGarity was having none of that.

He followed me and started putting the signs back up. When I told him why I was taking the signs down, he said, "Let's get it on, right here." I said I wasn't interested in fighting him, but the signs were going to come back down. When I turned and walked away, he swung a sign as hard as he could and hit me in the middle of the back.

Reading about the Rand Paul incident drove home the possible danger from living next door to someone who is more than a little unhinged. It also reminded me that I haven't written all that much about what McGarity did to me, especially when you consider the serious nature of any assault. McGarity's behavior was particularly creepy because he essentially stalked me -- followed me to the entrance of our neighborhood, where he had no business.

Much more about McGarity's assault on me needs to be told, and I intend to tell it. As noted previously, a woman who lived in our neighborhood was an eyewitness to the attack. I have her name and statement about what she saw, and I soon will be sharing that with Legal Schnauzer readers. It will make clear that I was, in fact, the victim of a felony assault.

That raises a number of questions, including this one: Why does a reputable company like Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama have an individual who committed a felony in its employ?

40 comments:

Anonymous said...

Strangest story of the year.

Anonymous said...

Memo to self: If you are thinking about assaulting a neighbor, pick one who isn't a U.S. senator.

Anonymous said...

The attacker here obviously was in the wrong, but I can imagine Rand Paul being a major-league, world-class prick.

Anonymous said...

So you wimped out on filing charges against McGarity. Makes me think you didn't have much of a case.

legalschnauzer said...

@2:02 --

Reading comprehension problems seem to be all the rage today. As explained in the post, I didn't file charges because Shelby Co. officials insisted this was a misdemeanor. Alabama law is clear that an assault with a "dangerous instrument" (a road sign) that causes "physical injury" (a bleeding gash in the back) is a felony. I was not going to attach my name to a misdemeanor complaint that I knew was false.

I would suggest you stick around to hear from an eyewitness. She will tell you what happened, and it matches my story exactly. That is coming soon.

Anonymous said...

How does the JFK assassination remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does Bush/Gore election of 2000 remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does the tsunami in Thailand remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does the Challenger explosion remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does Enron's fraud remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does the assassination of Franz Ferdinand remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does the size of President Taft remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does the Teapot Dome scandal remind you of a way in which you were wronged?

How does Judas betraying Jesus remind you of a way in which you were wronged?


Anonymous said...

Memo to self No. 2: If you are thinking about assaulting a neighbor, pick one who isn't a blogger.

Anonymous said...

I don't know, getting violent over grass clippings sounds reasonable to me.

Anonymous said...

So you disagreed with law enforcement professionals even way back then. You evidently knew better than the people who had been trained. My My.

If only your world was like Mr. Rogers' neighborhood where you could travel by train to your own fantasy-world--then you could concoct your own laws and live by your code of conduct.

legalschnauzer said...

@2:09 --

Hah! I knew a comment like yours was coming. You're the guy who can't believe thoughts from Roger Shuler might be included in a blog written by Roger Shuler. You really need to come up with new material. Your act is beyond tired and stale. It is, however, predictable.

Anonymous said...

Roger: You have been wronged by so many people. And there's no doubt you have an outstanding legal mind and capabilities, even acting pro se. Are there any judgements in your favor on the books that we can review and point to as a warning for others to back off when it comes to the Legal Schnauzer? I'm sure if you wanted to, you could really bring some people to Justice, even in civil court, and not just spend time blogging about Ashley Madison users.

legalschnauzer said...

@2:13 --

Why don't you read Code of Alabama 13A-6-21 (Assault, second degree) and see who is right. Heck, I'll even supply the URL:

https://law.justia.com/codes/alabama/2006/13297/13a-6-21.html

I'll even cut and paste for you:

(2) With intent to cause physical injury to another person, he or she causes physical injury to any person by means of a deadly weapon or a dangerous instrument.


Alabama law has held that human fists can be a dangerous instrument. It also has held that items such as a "stick, rock, pencil, or pen" can be a dangerous instrument. Here is URL to such a case:

https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=11137293312441068771&q=assault+and+second+degree+and+dangerous+instrument+and+pencil&hl=en&as_sdt=4,1


From that case, Harris v. State:

"Many objects are not deadly per se and ordinarily have lawful functions and uses, but ... such object may constitute a `dangerous instrument' because it was used, or attempted to be used, in a manner rendering it `readily capable of causing death or serious physical injury.' (A stick, rock, pencil or pen is capable of producing great harm or even death if jammed in a person's eye, ear or throat.) This definition essentially states previously existing law."


This law has been around a long time. Want to tell me who is right here? Never mind, you probably don't have the intelligence or integrity to make such a finding.

legalschnauzer said...

@2:26 --

I will give you a couple of answers, and then add a comment:

(1) The case where my brothers tried to have Carol and me declared incompetent was found in our favor. The docket can be found at case.net.

(2) In Carol's pending criminal matter, several issues -- trespassing charge dismissed, motion to compel granted -- have been found in her favor.

Comment: Your question, in my view, is a bit off target. You essentially are asking: Who did the judge favor in such and such a case? But a judge's ruling and the actual law often are two very different things. Addressing that problem is the overarching theme of this blog. The better question: Can you show a case that should have gone in your favor, by law, but didn't because of corrupt rulings by a judge? I will give you a classic example in the next comment.

legalschnauzer said...

If you really want to get into this, here is my suggestion:

Go to AlaCourt, which should be available to the public at your nearest courthouse (if you live in Alabama). Look up Mike McGarity v. Roger Shuler. Don't remember case number, but think it was filed in 2001.

You will see that my lawyers (Michael Odom/Jesse P. Evans III) filed two motions for summary judgment. You will see that both motions were properly supported with evidence, in the form of affidavits. On the first, McGarity filed no timely response or evidence. On the second, McGarity filed no response or evidence at all.

Then look up a case called Voyager Guaranty Insurance Co. v. Brown. Here is the URL:

https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=4769799946289742009&hl=en&as_sdt=2&as_vis=1&oi=scholarr

Here is the key finding:

"When a party opposing a properly supported motion for summary judgment offers no evidence to contradict that presented by the movant, trial court MUST consider the movant's evidence uncontroverted, with no genuine issue of material fact existing."

You will see in the file that Judge J. Michael Joiner denied both of our motions for summary judgment. But the law in Voyager says the trial court MUST consider our evidence uncontroverted, with no genuine issue of material fact existing. That means Joiner had to grant our motion, but he did not.

Alabama procedural law holds that this is a nondiscretionary ruling. A judge can't just go any way he wants. If one side's evidence is uncontroverted, it's game, set, match -- and summary judgment is granted. This was the case that pretty much started our legal headaches. If it had been decided correctly, none of this other stuff happens.

Presto, there you have it, in one case: irrefutable evidence of the corruption this blog has been spotlighting for 10 years -- in some cases that involve me, in many cases that do not.

Anonymous said...

"Many objects are not deadly per se and ordinarily have lawful functions and uses, but ... such object MAY constitute a `dangerous instrument' because it was used, or attempted to be used, in a manner rendering it `readily capable of causing death or serious physical injury.' (A stick, rock, pencil or pen is capable of producing great harm or even death if jammed in a person's EYE, EAR OR THROAT.) This definition essentially states previously existing law."

I capitalized the key words here. It is important to note that it says MAY not SHALL constitute a 'dangerous instrument'. It matters how the instrument is used to decide if it is a deadly weapon. What kind of sign are we talking about? Based on your description, I picture a plastic corrugated sign around 12" x 12" on a wire metal stand. It sounds like he swung it toward your back and actually struck you there. That doesn't sound like he jammed in a person's EYE, EAR OR THROAT. Based on your description so far, I have to side with law enforcement and the magistrate. If you had your way, there would never be a time that anyone would be charged with a misdemeanor assault because anything may cause serious injury if used in a certain way. Perhaps that is what my question should have been. Can you give me an example when the misdemeanor charge would be used? Why didn't you at least go for the misdemeanor and try to get it raised later like the Senator did? At least then you would have had a criminal charge against your neighbor.

legalschnauzer said...

@2:26 --

I forgot one ruling that was found in our favor. Roger Shuler et al v. Liberty Duke et al ("The Jail Case") was dismissed by the trial court, but overturned by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. If your interest is in showing an example where I was proven right and a federal trial judge (R. David Proctor) was proven wrong -- even by his fellow judicial members -- this is the case that shows that in the most clear way:


http://media.ca11.uscourts.gov/opinions/unpub/files/201515853.pdf

legalschnauzer said...

@4:35 --

You aren't reading the law correctly. It has to be read in conjunction with the statute, which I cite at 2:36 above. You are citing case law, which deals with only one element of the crime -- what is or isn't a "deadly weapon" or "dangerous instrument." Here's more on how you are off base:

(1) You say "it matters how the instrument is used to decide if it is a deadly weapon." I never said it was a deadly weapon, and that's not an issue in my situation. I said it was a dangerous instrument -- much bigger and dangerous than a pencil -- and it was swung with violence force, causing "physical injury." That is the definition of Assault, 2d, in Alabama, which is a felony.

(2) The law, in total (statute and case law), doesn't say something has to be jammed in your eye, etc. to be a dangerous instrument. Again, you are confusing that with a deadly weapon, which isn't a factor here. The equation in Alabama is simple: "dangerous instrument" + "physical injury" = felony assault.

(3) You say, "If you had your way, there would never be a time that anyone would be charged with a misdemeanor assault because anything may cause serious injury if used in a certain way." Again, you are off target; read the statute. It doesn't have to be "serious injury" to be a felony. It only needs to be "physical injury," if it's administered with a "dangerous instrument," which can be anything as small as a pencil. This was an instrument that's probably 100 times larger than a pencil, swung at full force by an "adult" male.

(4) There are all kinds of ways to have a misdemeanor assault -- a push, a shove. If McGarity had hit me in the back with his hand, maybe even his fist, it might have been a misdemeanor. But he hit me with a "dangerous instrument." That makes it a felony. Again, read the statute AND the case law cited.

(5) Going with a misdemeanor required me signing a false document, and I wasn't going to do it. I don't know that Rand Paul is trying to get the charge raised. It's in the hands of prosecutors, who will make that decision. KY assault law probably is worded differently from Alabama, so it's hard to compare the two. The Paul charge originally was a misdemeanor because the attacker tackled Paul. He didn't hit him with a fist, or a roadside sign, or a baseball bat or any other "dangerous instrument." If such an instrument had been used, the Paul charge probably would have been a felony right off the bat -- if KY wording is like that in Alabama. It probably will be elevated to felony because the injuries are much more severe than originally thought. Paul's case clearly goes to serious physical injury, although it didn't look that way at first.

Anonymous said...

I think you are missing the point. A pencil isn't necessarily a dangerous instrument. If I stab you, it is a dangerous instrument, but if I use it to as a club it isn't dangerous.
You also didn't deny my description of the sign, so I will take that as confirmation that it is correct. Do you have pictures of this injury?
Also, how would signing a misdemeanor assault be a false document? All the elements you have given are there in the assault 3rd code. You would rather do nothing than at least get a misdemeanor arrest.

legalschnauzer said...

Would be happy to answer your questions, but it takes quite a bit of space here in a comment. Would be better suited for a phone conversation. Feel free to call (205) 381-5673 if you care to discuss.

Anonymous said...

I believe there was a youtube video where you had recorded a phone conversation with a Sheriff's deputy about this assault. I tried to refer back to it, but couldn't find it. Do you know where it is?

legalschnauzer said...

@7:18 --

You seem to know a lot about this incident -- the type of sign involved, a phone conversation with a deputy. If you know so much, you shouldn't need my help answering your question.

Anonymous said...

Actually, the fact that it isn't on your youtube account anymore, kind of means that I can't answer that question on my own. Perhaps you have deleted the video, maybe you set it to a private video, either way you have the answer and apparently you don't want to talk about it.

legalschnauzer said...

Oh, I would be more than happy to talk about it. Give me a call at (205) 381-5673.

Let's talk! Can't wait! Our operators are standing by!

Anonymous said...

Roger, I have no intention of calling you and you know that. It was a simple question that could have been answered in a couple of sentences. What would me calling you actually accomplish that couldn't be done here? Since you won't answer it, I can start guessing if you want me too. Let me know if I get close. Mrs. Poe hacked you account and deleted it. Youtube declared it was copyright infringement and deleted it. That video was declared a government secret and you aren't allowed to talk about it. Or maybe you just realized the videos made you look bad.

legalschnauzer said...

You said I don't want to talk about it. But I've made it clear I do want to talk about it. So what's your problem -- you don't have a phone, you have shyness issue about phone calls?

As you say, it's a simple question, which can be answered by phone just as easily as in a comment. You bothered to check my YouTube account, but you have no intention of calling me? Why?

The bottom line, as of now, YOU are the one who doesn't want to talk about it. So don't lay that line of bull on me.

Anonymous said...

I find it very entertaining how you can relate anything that happens in the world to yourself and how someone screwed you over. How does the Harvey Weinstein saga remind you of someone who has wronged you

legalschnauzer said...

I find it entertaining that you go to a blog written by Roger Shuler and are amazed to find thoughts and analysis from Roger Shuler. Then, you repeat the same tired saw over and over, like a parakeet. Are you really that stupid?

That's like going to a Rolling Stones concert and saying, "Damn, their playing songs by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. That offends my sensibilities."

What a douche.

Anonymous said...

*They're

Anonymous said...

Why were you removing the yard sale signs? From what I have read about the laws in and around Shelby County, yard sale signs are permitted from 24 hours before the sale until midnight of the day of the sale. The restrictions are that they can not be put up on utility poles and they are not allowed on Highway 31.

Anonymous said...

Roger, why do you keep asking people to call you? No one wants to call you, be recorded, then have you use that phone call to write an article about them. Why would anyone do that? The poor souls who have opened up and contacted you, you've later blasted on here. The poor niece of your neighbor comes to mind.

Also, why do you still have an Alabama number? You don't live in Alabama. You need to give up that number and let someone who pays Alabama taxes represent the 205 area code in a way that doesn't bring embarrassment to this state like you and your deadbeat, living-on-government-cheese harpy wife.

legalschnauzer said...

@9:18 --

When have I ever asked someone to call me, recorded the call, and written a story about it? Give me one example.

We have a cell phone, with an Alabama number, and we have no obligation to give it up, especially when we don't plan on being in Missouri forever. On top of that, Carol and I have paid taxes in Alabama for a combined 60-plus years. How long have you paid taxes in Alabama?

On top of that, payment of taxes and cell-phone numbers have nothing to do with one another. You are really grasping, bro.

legalschnauzer said...

@9:11 --

It is illegal under Alabama to place a sign in the right-of-way of a state highway. Here is an article on the subject:

http://blog.al.com/on-the-road/2010/04/post_24.html

From the article:

"But, if a sign interferes with motorists’ sight distance or creates a safety hazard, the DOT has the option to remove it immediately, he said."

I thought about calling someone at the state to remove them, but I didn't know who to call, and I didn't know how long it would take for them to respond. Meanwhile, the danger to drivers was immediate, so I removed them myself. I thought doing something that might save lives or prevent injuries was a good idea.

Gee, how thoughtless of me. You have a problem with that? I suppose you think that gave McGarity grounds to assault me? Perhaps you think the importance of garage-sale signs trumps driver safety? I guess you are a "pro-lifer," huh? Sheesh.

If you can find something about a Shelby Co. law, let me know. But I doubt you are going to find a county law that supersedes state law. My guess is that what you've heard is inaccurate.

Anonymous said...

You'll never move back to Alabama. You are hiding from a judgement against you. You are running from your obligations to the law. You will never ever live in Alabama again. Therefore, you should rightly give up your Alabama cell phone number and quit pretending that you are an "Alabama blogger." You moved back near mommy and daddy and now even your own family disavows you.

You need to move to the Island of Misfit Toys and live out your remaining few days there. You've got, what, 5-6 years left at your age and your health?

How quickly will Carol find someone who can do a better job supporting her once you've dropped dead from a heart attack while out removing "Garage Sale" signs?

legalschnauzer said...

@9:47 --

The more you write, the more stupid you become. You think a judgment can be sought only if I live in Alabama? Check the law, dimwit. Ever heard of the Unified Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act (UEFJA). It allows for collection of judgments across state lines. So it matters not one iota whether I live in Alabama or not. Jessica Garrison can try to collect her judgment, but she knows it is void -- and I can attack it as void at any time.

No wonder you resort to insults, because you have nothing else in that empty brain of yours. What a first-class intellect you are. Hah!

Anonymous said...

Mr. Shuler,

Could you point me to an article (by someone other than you) stating the judgement is void?

legalschnauzer said...

@10:55 --

Are you interested only in who wrote such an article or are you interested in learning what the actual law says? If you are interested in the latter, I can point you directly to an article that describes it. If you are interested in the former, I would suggest you conduct that research yourself.

If you are interested in learning the law, I can help you. If you only want to find someone who will match your preconceived notions, do that work yourself. I'm not interested, and it's a truly meaningless endeavor.

In short, I can help people who are open to learning and want to know what the law says. As for people who just want to churn in their own agenda, I'm not interested in what they think because it's usually not reality-based and serves no useful purpose.

Anonymous said...

Nice non-answer. Full of bullshit and circular writing.

Christmas is coming up. Ms. Garrison would appreciate you sending her some money so she can catch some good deals on Black Friday.

legalschnauzer said...

So, as I expected, you aren't interested in the real law. You just want to find someone to stroke your agenda. Shallow and lazy--plus you probably are ugly and fat. That's no way to go through life. Wallow in your pitiful life, bitch!

e.a.f. said...

perhaps while Rand Paul was receiving medical treatment he gave some thought to those without medical coverage. Rand Paul suffered extensive injuries and has a great medical plan given he is a federal politician. the rest of the American population not so much, unless you have money or qualified for the ACA. With Rand Paul and his fellow Republicans trying to eliminate health care for 40 million or so other Americans, he might want to think about what his injuries would have been like had he no medical coverage.

at some level this is funny. two highly educated men getting into a physical altercation at their ages.

I note the A. person is still at it. who ever it is they don't add anything to the comments on the blog. Could you just loose them?

legalschnauzer said...

e.a.f. --

Great points about Rand Paul. It is hard to imagine what would prompt two doctors to act this way. I guess they are human, after all.

Agree about "A person." I've only run those comments to show the agitation (and fear, I think) that comes from the news that Pub Def. is withdrawing from Carol's case and Pros Atty is waiving jail time. I think that has certain people nervous -- especially ones who might have been involved in a conspiracy that led to Carol's arm being broken -- and to her false arrest.

The point already is made -- and these commenters deal only in insults and 4-letter words -- so I probably won't be publishing more. Their act gets stale in a hurry.

Hope, however, that it is instructive for readers to see just a small dose of the vitriol I get all the time from people who fear justice.