|William M. Acker II|
In a rare piece of good news on "justice" in the Deep South, William M. Acker Jr., 90, died on June 21 after spending 34 years as a "judge" in the Northern District of Alabama -- the last 20 on senior status, before his full retirement in 2016. The wrinkled Reagan appointee had been on the federal bench in Birmingham since 1982.
Acker is the judge who cheated me raw in my First Amendment/discrimination lawsuit against UAB. Many of the ugly events that have happened to my wife, Carol, and me in the past six or seven years -- my kidnapping and incarceration; loss of our home of 25 years in Birmingham to wrongful foreclosure; our unlawful eviction in Missouri; Carol's shattered arm, requiring almost eight hours of trauma surgery (thanks to Greene County deputies) -- would not have happened if Acker had handled the UAB case lawfully.
Perhaps the best part about Acker's death is that it might allow for revival of my lawsuit against UAB. Wouldn't that be a hoot if the SOBs (and daughters of bitches, DOBs?) who thought they got away with cheating me the first time were to see my complaint slapped on their desks -- or wind up in their mailboxes, for those who no longer work at the university? It could happen.
The original case was not a hard case to decide, given that UAB human-resources official Anita Bonasera admitted in a tape-recorded phone call that I was targeted because of my reporting on this blog about the Don Siegelman case. But Acker, being a Bastard-Coated Bastard With Bastard Filling (BCBWBF), repeatedly ruled contrary to black-letter law -- and he even had the audacity to state in open court that he was going to cheat me, and then he did it. Naturally, his corrupt cronies on the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta backed him up in a "Do Not Publish" opinion -- which is a little trick federal judges use to cheat certain litigants without screwing up the actual law in federal reporters.
The late Monroe Freedman, a Hofstra University professor who was considered the father of modern legal ethics as an academic subject, said he was sick of seeing crooked opinions like the one Acker produced in my case. From Freedman:
Frankly, I have had more than enough of judicial opinions that bear no relationship whatsoever to the cases that have been filed and argued before the judges.
I am talking about judicial opinions that falsify the facts of the cases that have been argued, judicial opinions that make disingenuous use or omission of material authorities, judicial opinions that cover up these things with no-publication and no-citation rules.
Freedman said that in a 1989 speech, and the quote made me feel like I was in awfully good company in reporting on scoundrels, like Acker, on the federal bench. Freedman died in 2015, and judicial corruption only got worse during the later years of his life.
As for the Northern District of Alabama, I've learned in recent weeks that Judge Virginia Emerson Hopkins, who reportedly retired to senior status in June, might be just as crooked as Acker. We will deal with her in upcoming posts. But for now, let's tell the world that William M. Acker Jr. was a hideous criminal, and the world is a better place now that he's dead.
An American tradition is that we speak kindly (and falsely) of the dead, no matter how big a BCBWBF he was in real life. That applies to Acker, as you can see from this article about his death at al.com:
Colleagues of retired United States District Judge William M. Acker, Jr., are remembering him this week as a brilliant and compassionate jurist who ruled on a variety of cases during a three-decade career on the federal bench.
"Brilliant and compassionate," my ass. You will notice the article includes only quotes from fellow judges and lawyers -- none from parties who had cases before Acker. I wish they had asked me for a quote. Here is what it would have been.
I consider Bill Acker to be a worse criminal than Jarrod W. Ramos, who killed five people in the recent newspaper shooting at Annapolis, Maryland. At least Ramos had the decency to use his own money to purchase his weapon. Even the worst mass killers generally do that. But not Bill Acker and his fellow judicial crooks. They use taxpayer money, in taxpayer-funded facilities. to cheat taxpayers who have cases before them -- all the while treating constitutional rights like they were used toilet paper and showing utter disrespect for the rule of law. In other words, Acker steals your money to buy a gun and shoot you with it. Hell, Jarrod Ramos almost certainly has more integrity than that.
How badly did Acker screw me on the UAB case? I've written several lengthy posts on that subject (see here, here, and here), but it boils down to this. He granted the university summary judgment, without discovery, in clear violation of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and Eleventh Circuit precedent, as outlined in Snook v. Trust Company of Georgia, 859 F. 2d 865 (11th Cir., 1988). From Snook:
"This court has often noted that summary judgment should not be granted until the party opposing the motion has had an adequate opportunity for discovery. . . . The party opposing a motion for summary judgment has a right to challenge the affidavits and other factual materials submitted in support of the motion by conducting sufficient discovery so as to enable him to determine whether he can furnish opposing affidavits. . . . Generally summary judgment is inappropriate when the party opposing the motion has been unable to obtain responses to his discovery requests."
Law doesn't get much more direct and simple than that. I filed at least three motions to inform the court that discovery had not been conducted, and Acker admitted in open court that he was aware of that, and I was entitled to conduct discovery to counter UAB's motion for summary judgment.
We've reported on at least one of Acker's judicial colleagues in the Northern District of Alabama who knows the law on discovery and summary judgment and has applied it correctly multiple times. We've reported that Acker himself has correctly applied the law in multiple cases. He just didn't do it in my case, and that's probably because he knew political thugs had pressured UAB to unlawfully terminate me, and Acker chose to protect those thugs. Specifically, Acker likely was protecting GOP cretin Rob "Uday" Riley and his associates, who were the driving forces behind my cheat job at UAB. We recently have uncovered evidence that suggests the Alabama State Bar might have been involved, too.
Speaking of Rob Riley, I'm not the only litigant Acker cheated in the name of protecting the son of former Alabama GOP Gov. Bob Riley. He did much the same thing in a whistle blower case on which we reported, where Rob Riley's company (and individuals tied to UAB) reportedly were engaging in health-care fraud. The plaintiff's Mississippi lawyers were left so amazed at Acker's unlawful rulings that they hardly knew what to say. They did say it might be possible to re-bring the case later, "but we'll have to wait for him to die."
Well, thank God, that time has arrived, although a send-off remains on schedule for Acker. According to an obituary at al.com, a "celebration" of Acker's life will be at 11 a.m. on July 28 at Highlands United Methodist Church. How do you "celebrate" the life of a publicly funded criminal? From the obit:
Judge Acker was known for his humorous limericks and writings but most particularly for his legal writings. Two weeks before his death, although nearly blind, he completed a law review article which will be published in the Cumberland Law Review in the near future.
Acker was a funny guy? Tell that to the parties he cheated in court. Acker almost went blind near the end of his life? Let's hope he enjoyed his time in near darkness, and maybe he learned something from it -- like karma really can be a bitch.
As for the possibility of reviving my UAB lawsuit, I'm still researching that topic -- but I think it is a possibility. In terms of new evidence, all evidence in the case is new because Acker did not allow any discovery the first time around. This much is certain: If my UAB case winds up back on the docket, William Marsh Acker II won't be hearing it.
Before we leave, let's pay tribute to Dr. Perry Cox, the memorable character from Scrubs who created a classic phrase we borrowed above. Here's the video: