Monday, May 21, 2018

Missouri prosecutor Dan Patterson is busy talking tough about drunk driving -- except when he's hiring a convicted drunk driver, like Nicholas Jain, to his staff


Dan Patterson
Greene County (MO) prosecuting attorney Dan Patterson hired a drunk driver for his staff, so you might expect that he would be squishy soft on issues related to DUIs. But based on Patterson's tough-guy Republican rhetoric, you would be wrong -- and we suspect his talking points become particularly rugged around election time.

So, it appears that Dan Patterson talks like Charles Bronson about drunk drivers, especially if it helps him get elected -- but then he hires a convicted drunk driver, Nicholas Jain, to be one of  his assistant prosecutors. I think, somewhere in the dictionary, that's called hypocrisy.

To make matters worse, Patterson assigns Jain to prosecute DUI cases, such as the recent one involving Charles Hollis Roux, of Springfield. Together, Patterson and Jain have a habit of bringing criminal charges without probable cause -- as they did in the Roux case and in the "assault of a law enforcement officer" case involving my wife, Carol.

Our previous articles in this series about the Roux case can be read here, here, and here. Documents related to the Roux case are embedded at the end of this post.

How gross is the hypocrisy in all of this? Jain has left his position in Greene County and is running for prosecuting attorney of Dunklin County, in southeast Missouri. Jain apparently is so arrogant that he thinks he can hide his DUI from voters -- or he thinks they simply do not care about his criminal record.

What is Patterson's rhetoric on drunk drivers -- when he isn't busy hiring a drunk driver for his staff? Let's look at some examples.

This is from a 2017 county press release, published last July at fox5krbk.com:

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – (7/31/17) Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson announces that Joshua Xavier Oswald, 23, of Springfield, MO was sentenced last Friday by The Honorable Thomas Mountjoy to a five year prison sentence on each of four counts of Assault in the Second Degree relating to a drunk driving crash that occurred on December 5, 2015. Probation was denied by the Court.Oswald’s charges stemmed from a motor vehicle crash that took place at the intersection of South Campbell and West Sunset in Springfield, Missouri.

So, if you drive drunk and crash into somebody, Patterson will throw you in prison for five years. If you don't crash, he might offer you a job. Here is a 2016 Springfield News-Leader article (by columnist Steve Pokin) where Patterson gripes that a drunk driver was placed on five years' probation for a crash that caused a fatality. Nicholas Jain, a member of Patterson's own staff, received two years' probation:

On Feb. 19, [Circuit Judge David] Jones sentenced [Dylan] Meyer to five years' probation. He could have sent Meyer to prison for 5 to 15 years. The prosecutor has asked for 10. Meyer had been charged with involuntary manslaughter.

The sentence was a "slap on the wrist," says Dan Patterson, Greene County prosecuting attorney.

Meyer, a 2012 graduate of Kickapoo High School, took the life of Kelly Williams in the early morning of Feb. 10, 2015. He slammed his pickup into her car at Campbell Avenue and Battlefield Road. He was driving 95 mph, according to police, when he ran a stoplight.

His blood alcohol level was .266 percent, three times the legal limit — a level where many can no longer walk.

The sentence was a "slap on the wrist"? What is it when Patterson offers a convicted drunk driver a job? A kiss on the butt? From a 2011 county press release. (Notice that Patterson touts the convictions he gets in DUI cases. I haven't received a press release about the hiring of a convicted drunk driver to his staff.):

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Dan Patterson, Greene County Prosecuting Attorney announced that Jeremy William Arata, 23, of Springfield, Missouri, was convicted today by a Greene County Jury of the class B felony of involuntary manslaughter in the first degree. The jury found that Arata was intoxicated on November 15, 2007, when the vehicle he was driving struck a vehicle driven by Mr. Paul Fain. Arata’s vehicle was going at speeds near 60 miles an hour in a residential area when it collided with Mr. Fain who had just pulled out from a stop sign. Mr. Fain died as a result of the injuries he suffered in the collision. Arata’s blood alcohol level was measured at .146%. The jury deliberated for approximately three hours before returning its verdict.

The jury trial was presided over by The Honorable Calvin Holden. The defendant is subject to a sentence of a minimum 5 years to a maximum 15 years in the Missouri Department of Corrections.

Finally, we have a 2014 press release about a plan to obtain blood samples from drunk drivers who refuse to take breath tests:

Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson announces that his office will assist local law enforcement agencies by seeking search warrants to obtain blood samples from drunk drivers that refuse to consent to a breath test after their arrest. This pilot project resulted from a collaboration of the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the Springfield Police Department and the Greene County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

To combat the often deadly problem of impaired driving, the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, Missouri State Highway Patrol and Springfield Police Department will kick off the “no refusal” policy with a joint DWI check point in November and will be out in force cracking down on impaired drivers. Following the kick-off event, the “no refusal” strategy will be applied to all DWI arrests by those agencies when a driver refuses consent.

It is called a “no refusal” policy because all impaired drivers arrested who refuse breath testing will be subject to blood testing for alcohol if a judge approves a warrant. The ability of law enforcement officers to submit their search warrant applications to judges electronically make this process both easy and relatively quick.

“Impaired driving remains a major public safety threat that still claims thousands of innocent lives on our roadways every year. A ‘no refusal’ policy represents one more tool in our battle against this public safety threat,” said Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson.

So, drunk drivers are a public safety threat, except when they apply for a job at the Greene County Prosecutor's Office -- and then, Patterson is likely to hire them.











21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Typical hypocrisy of a prosecutor thug.

Anonymous said...

Who are the bigger liars -- cops or prosecutors. Too close to call?

Twinkie said...

Patterson looks like he came out of central casting as the "tough guy" who really is a fraud.

Anonymous said...

"So, if you drive drunk and crash into somebody, Patterson will throw you in prison for five years. If you don't crash, he might offer you a job."


Hah! Great line, Schnauzer.

Anonymous said...

How many times do cops let drunk drivers off when they find out they are prosecutors or other cops? Bet it happens a lot.

Anonymous said...

What a sickening phony. Our justice system is rotten at every corner.

Anonymous said...

Take or leave his policies, it's pretty typical for more severe violations, with serious property damage or injured victims, to be treated differently in charging and sentencing than first events on the lower end of violation with no victims or property damage.

Btw, congrats. I see from the courts site in MO that the judge took Carols case under advisement. That is almost always a sign the judge will dismiss the charges down the line, so long as the defendant has not further violations or complies with certain orders. Did Carol just get an instruction to refrain from unlawful conduct until X date? Did he add on other requirements? (E.g, mental health visits or community service?) if the judge didn't dismiss the case outright, this is a pretty good result for Carol and it means she may never have any criminal conviction on the books.

Anonymous said...

Aboard the Eliza Battle the crew members were assembled for a war briefing. Captain Marshall requested that Coach put the football down and pay attention. Coach replied that he needed the inner tube for Auburn's national championship football. Unexpectedly the Victoria's war plans fell from the unlaced football. Ms Chapelle retrieved a sheet of paper and then said, "Captain! Sessions is a spy." Captain Marshall Observed the papers and then instructed Bob Yancey to put them back in the crimson tide championship football and dispatch it to Mike's friend Cliff to place in the President's hands. Captain Marshall turned to the Marines and replied," Congratulations Marines for a job well done. You have earned a few days leave in Savannah Ga."

legalschnauzer said...

@10:01 --

Yes, Carol was forced to trial last Thursday, without anything close to adequate discovery and without having her Motion to Suppress heard by the new judge, as required by Missouri law.

As a witness, I was only in the courtroom for my testimony. But I've spoken with Carol, who has a very good memory, at length -- and here are a few thoughts/questions about your comment.

1. Why do you think the fact the judge "took it under advisement" is good for Carol? I've never heard that one before. I hope you are right, and you should be right, but I think he took it under advisement because there were 6 witnesses or so, and there is no way he could make a decision on the spot with that amount of testimony.

2. What do you mean by dismiss the charges "down the line"? My understanding is he will determine Carol was not guilty or guilty. Not sure there is any reason for action "down the line" if she is not guilty?

3. You mention "as long as Carol has no further violations." Carol had no violations in the first place, and I understand the trial showed that. I've seen or heard nothing to suggest anything was proven against Carol beyond a reasonable doubt. And I testified, with documents, that there was no writ of execution approved by a judge, so the cops had no grounds to be on our rented property -- as I've stated here many times.

4. Why would there be "certain orders" if Carol is found not guilty, which she is -- and the court case proved it.

5. I was only in there for a limited time, so I'm not sure what instructions Carol got, but she's made no mention of anything about "refraining from certain unlawful conduct." After all, she didn't engage in unlawful conduct in the first place, and the trial certainly did not show that she did -- no matter what the judge rules.

6. Why would a judge order mental health visits (or community service) for a defendant who is not guilty? If anyone needs mental health visits, it's the cops who concocted bogus claims to cover up their own misdeeds and prosecutors who brought the charges. Are you suggesting that someone needs mental health care because they were victims of police brutality? What about the cops who beat up Carol and broke her arm? Do they need mental health care?

7. Not sure where you are coming from. You claim this is a good result for Carol, and you acknowledge there has been no finding of guilt or innocence, but you hint that requirements should be placed on Carol for something she didn't do. Strange.

Anonymous said...

So Patterson is the toad who signed off on charges against Carol, with no accuser and no probable cause?

legalschnauzer said...

@12:51 --

Yep, that's him.

Anonymous said...

Patterson is the ignoramus who filed charges against Carol, even though the "victim" admitted he grabbed her -- initiating contact -- not the other way around? If anything, the "victim" committed a crime, not Carol, and Patterson is so dense he brought charges against Carol.

Amazing!

legalschnauzer said...

@1:15 --

Yep, that's him. As you can see, the people of Greene County, MO, have set the bar pretty low for prosecutors.

Anonymous said...

Dan Patterson's visit to the doctor:

Doc: You're fat.

Patterson: I want a second opinion.

Doc: OK, you're ugly -- and stupid, too.

Patterson: That's three opinions.

Doc: I've got more if you want 'em

Patterson: No . . . no . . . no.

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't that godforsaken county up there run a lowland gorilla for DA next time. The gorilla would be smarter than Patterson and likely would work for a cut rate.

Anonymous said...

Patterson is like all the conservative dudes who proclaim their "family values" for all to hear, and then get caught on Ashley Madison -- trying to have an affair with someone else's wife, or husband.

Anonymous said...

@10:01 --

Your comment sounds like it came from someone with a horse in the race, trying to pull a con job.

You suggest the judge might look favorably upon Carol if she has "no further violations." What violations did she have in the first place? What "violations" were proven beyond a reasonable doubt at trial? Bet you can't name one.

You suggest the judge might order Carol to "refrain from unlawful conduct to X date." What "unlawful conduct" was proven beyond a reasonable doubt at trial? Bet you can't cite one example.

Are you suggesting it's "unlawful" to have cops beat you up and break your arm? I think sociology profs call that "blaming the victim." You must specialize in that, which makes me think you are a member of the prosecution team, and you are trying to make your case look like something other than the turd-on-a-stick that it is.

It also makes me think you are one sick puppy.

Anonymous said...

@LS: My condolences on this phony-baloney "trial" -- yet another travesty Carol has had to endure -- in the Missouri kangaroo court. You are correct. Taking something "under advisement" means nothing other than the judge "will consider the facts/evidence presented" (which is what judges are paid to do) in his deliberations before rendering judgement. The fact that the non-existent case was not dismissed, as it should have been, tells me that the judge will drag out his decision as long as possible, and ultimately render a guilty verdict. This will put the appeal burden on Carol and stall for even more time. Not good news, contrary to the opinion of 10:01 am.

legalschnauzer said...

@6:00 --

Thanks for the kind words, and I think your analysis is spot on. A lot happened at that trial on Thursday that smells really bad -- and I discovered a lot after the trial that smells even worse. Haven't reported on this stuff yet, but I will be soon.

The amount of perjury from prosecution witnesses was staggering, and we can absolutely prove it in several instances.

Anonymous said...

Aboard the Eliza Battle Ms Chapelle and Captain Marshall were discussing Carol's Trial. Ms Chapelle remarked that a commentator said Carol was tried in a Kangaroo court and asked if the Captain knew the origin of the phrase. The Captain replied that the word kangaroo derives from the Guugu Yimithirr word gangurru, referring to the grey kangaroo. The name was first recorded in 1770. The western grey kangaroo's fur ranges from a chocolaty brown to almost black with lighter under parts. According to 18th century English and international law, there were 3 legally recognized principles that governed the taking over or acquiring new land: A. conquest B. treaty C. Occupation by the absence of a presence on the land of people owning the land. Aboriginal nation's ancient lands were colonized in the mid 1800's by Great Britain under the occupation concept. The Murrawarri people were not recognized in the Australian Constitution, therefore by the Cannon of Constitution Construction, they were a separate people within their own nation and independent of the Australian Nation. By this train of thought, an Australian Court would not have jurisdiction over the Murrawarri people. A Murrawarri person brought before a Australian Judge dressed in his Court attire would say that the Judge Looks like a kangaroo. This is a kangaroo court. You have no jurisdiction over me. Ms Chapelle asked the Captain who told him that origin and the Captain replied, "Captain Kangaroo."

Anonymous said...

From Wikipedia (references removed): A kangaroo court is a court that ignores recognized standards of law or justice, and often carries little or no official standing in the territory within which it resides. The term may also apply to a court held by a legitimate judicial authority who intentionally disregards the court's legal or ethical obligations. The defendants in such courts are often denied access to legal representation and in some cases, proper defense.

Prejudicial bias of the decision-maker or from political decree are among the most publicized causes of kangaroo courts.[citation needed] Such proceedings are often held to give the appearance of a fair and just trial, even though the verdict has in reality already been decided before the trial has begun. An example is the trial of Pol Pot and his brother Ieng San by the People's Revolutionary Tribunal in Cambodia in August 1979. After a lengthy trial with a duration of five days, both were sentenced to death in absentia on August 19, 1979. Conclusive evidence showed that the verdicts and the sentencing papers had been prepared in advance of the trial. Relying on this evidence the United Nations proceeded to delegitimize the tribunal stating that it did not comply with standards of international law.

A kangaroo court could also develop when the structure and operation of the forum result in an inferior brand of adjudication. A common example of this is when institutional disputants ("repeat players") have excessive and unfair structural advantages over individual disputants ("one-shot players").

Etymology
The term kangaroo court is often erroneously believed to have its origin from Australia's courts while it was a penal colony. However, the first published instance of the term is from an American source in the year 1853. Some sources suggest that it may have been popularized during the California Gold Rush of 1849, along with mustang court, as a description of the hastily carried-out proceedings used to deal with the issue of claim jumping miners. Ostensibly the term comes from the notion of justice proceeding "by leaps", like a kangaroo – in other words, "jumping over" (intentionally ignoring) evidence that would be in favor of the defendant. Another possibility is that the phrase could refer to the pouch of a kangaroo, meaning the court is in someone's pocket. The phrase is popular in the UK, US, Australia and New Zealand and is still in common use.