Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Another longtime partner bolts Balch & Bingham as reports swirl about a possible federal investigation involving the beleaguered Birmingham law firm

Jennifer Powell Decker

Another partner has bolted Birmingham's Balch & Bingham law firm as reports mount that the firm may be the target of a federal investigation. According to a post at, the probe could involve possible obstruction of justice and actions connected to Montgomery-based Matrix LLC. Writes Publisher K.B. Forbes, under the headline "Obstruction Destruction! Another Balch Legacy Partner Exits":

Jennifer Powell Decker, a seasoned Balch & Bingham partner and one of the top-ranking women at the embattled firm, has dumped Balch after 15 dedicated years.

The announcement follows the abrupt and suprising departure of long-time Balch legacy partner Rob Fowler who appears to have taken a step downward, becoming inside counsel for a coal company currently not operating due to the lack of permits.

Powell Decker is now “of counsel” at Baker Donelson in Birmingham according to news reports.

Last week, we learned from high-level sources that an alleged federal probe is looking at possible obstruction of justice.

Allegedly at least three smear artists paid through third-party entities and allegedly tied to the obscure political consulting firm Matrix have been interviewed by federal agents.

In the world of "Big Law," a move like Powell Decker's -- from partner to "of counsel" -- is a clear step down, sources tell Legal Schnauzer. That suggests she, and perhaps Fowler, just wanted to get away from the stench that now surrounds Balch.

As for a federal probe, what might it revolve around? The answer appears to be a smelly case that seems to get more pungent by the day. Writes Forbes:

Beyond the money trail and the Matrix Meltdown, sources claim that investigators are looking at alleged obstruction in the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal.

The question that observers are asking now: Is Balch and its sister-wife Alabama Power under federal investigation?

Mark A. Crosswhite, CEO of Alabama Power and a former Balch partner, was photographed inappropriately chugging cocktails with U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town allegedly at the height of the North Birmingham Bribery Trial.

Allegedly Alabama Power had a secret deal where they were “unmentionable” during the criminal trial.

Alabama Power was the only entity that donated to the money laundering entity known as the Alliance for Jobs and the Economy (AJE) that did NOT testify during the trial.

Was the utility and their agents “unindicted masterminds?” Alabama Power was briefed regularly about the North Birmingham shenanigans.

Last year, Town resigned in disgrace as U.S. Attorney. Is Crosswhite’s coming retirement or resignation next?

Is all of this tarnishing Balch's well-polished image? Well, it certainly seems to have the revolving exit doors spinning:

The apparent internal strife at Balch appears to have shattered the firm’s public relations fluff and may have doomed (Crosswhite), the most powerful man in Alabama.

Holy Mistletoe!


Anonymous said...

LOL nobody reads this crazy shit

legalschnauzer said...

And you know that how?

Anonymous said...

This woman invested 15 years in Balch & Bingham, becoming a partner, and then leaves for a lesser position at another firm. That's pretty strange.

Anonymous said...

@11:28 -- It looks like you read it. Does that make you a devoted consumer of "crazy shit"? I guess it does. LOL.

RiccoPitts said...

11:28 I call bullshit to your crazy shit. Many, many people are reading this. No one with a grade school education or above doesn't think that there wasn't a cover up. No way in hell was only one lawyer involved in this. That coal company sold their worker up shit creek. I bet that lawyer will come out of fed jail in five years with no less than 10 million in his account. Also, no US federal prosecutor just up and quits his job, bullshit to that. I do agree it's some crazy shit alright, but it's the type of crazy shit that needs a FULL INDEPENDENT investigation.

legalschnauzer said...

Agreed Ricco, and well stated:

For the record, I've got blog statistics that say @11:28 is wrong. The Balch-related posts we've run here at LS are quite well read, and I'm sure has a solid readership as well. This all grew out of a federal trial that drew national news coverage, and it appears that trial was mostly a sham, with major issues never put to bed. That makes it newsworthy, even if you think it's "crazy shit."

Anonymous said...

Look at any small municipality that "owns" it's electrical grid. Look at the ties to Alabama Power or Powersouth, the paid positions each municipal representative has on the boards at the power provider. Then, look at who the lawfirm is that handles their dirty business. It's quite a small, well integrated, corrupt from the bottom up web. There are very few places untouched by them. And Balch has cleaned up many a mess brought on by the many levels. It's way deeper and wider than people realize

Anonymous said...

It's interesting how an attempt to minimize the value of your blog actually validated it's usefulness. Please Mr Fox, Don't throw me into that briar patch!