Saturday, December 30, 2023

Colorado records reveal Bryan Dawson's violent streak that led to attempted-murder charges, but now Dawson is CEO of right-wing news site in Alabama

Bryan Dawson (left) and Jeff Poor on an 1819 podcast.

Police reports from Colorado indicate Kenneth Bryan Dawson engaged in horrific acts of violence before winding up in Alabama and becoming the head of 1819 News, a conservative news site that published a series of articles leading to the suicide of small-town Alabama mayor Fred "Bubba" Copeland. That's from a post today at

Word of  Dawson's criminal record has been pretty well known for some time. But Watkins, a longtime Alabama attorney who has become a leading voice in online investigative journalism, takes a deep dive into the police investigation that produced first-degree attempted murder charges against Dawson, providing hair-raising insights into Dawson's conduct before he became a news executive in Alabama.

Speaking of which, how did Dawson, with his penchant for over-the-top violence and no apparent background in journalism, become a news executive at a site with ties to the Alabama Policy Institute (API), a right-wing think tank that grew from the same soil that produced Gary Palmer (R-AL), who briefly was in the running for speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives before the job went to Mike Johnson of Louisiana. Palmer and his allies reportedly have taken steps to keep their connections to Bryan Dawson on the "down low." It is going to be difficult, however to hide from the graphic descriptions of Dawson's violent past that Watkins unearthed in today's exclusive investigative report.

Watkins' report, after all, shows Dawson is capable of attempted murder, and one might think that issue would be of concern to Gary Palmer & Co., rather than being treated as something to sweep out of sight. Under the headline "An Inside Look into Kenneth Bryan Dawson’s First Degree Attempted Murder Investigation," Watkins writes:

Today, he is the co-founder, president, CEO, and publisher of Birmingham, Alabama-based 1819 News.  His real name is Kenneth Bryan Dawson.

Dawson is the man who “outed” former Smiths Stations, Alabama Mayor Fred “Bubba” Copeland on November 1, 2023, for engaging in crossing-dressing activities in his home and writing works of erotic fiction. Three days after he was "outed," Bubba Copeland killed himself with a gun.

In April 2007, Kenneth Bryan Dawson was a hardcore drug trafficker and serial motor vehicle thief in Colorado Springs, Colorado, who tortured a member of his motor-vehicle theft ring with a taser and beat him with a padlock attached to a heavy chain – all because Dawson thought this violent crime victim was a “snitch.” 

Justin Joslin, Dawson’s attempted-murder victim, said Dawson tased him 15 to 20 times. Joslin had burn marks on his legs and arms from the tasing. Joslin also sustained blunt force trauma to his forehead caused by Dawson hitting him with the padlock.

The treating physicians at the hospital told police Joslin was “lucky to be alive.”

Dawson sounds like a swell guy, doesn't he? Just the type you would want to hire to run a news operation -- assuming you could keep him from MAKING news by trying to murder people who displease him. Writes Watkins:

The Colorado Springs, Colorado Police Department investigative report on Dawson’s attempted murder is detailed and damning.  [The police file may be viewed by clicking the link here.]

Dawson accused Joslin of being a “snitch” for the police. 

Dawson threatened Joslin that if he (Joslin) went to the police about this incident, “I will shoot you in the face, I will fucking kill you.

Gee, that's lovely. And this is a guy who now apparently is viewed as somewhat of a pastor, known to give fiery sermons at Alabama churches. And this question comes to mind: What if a reporter made a mistake in the 1819 newsroom? Would Dawson threaten to f----g kill him or her? I've had some tough editors in my 40-plus years in journalism, but I've never had one that sounded like a threat to public safety. Should Dawson even be allowed to work around other human beings? Writes Watkins:

After Dawson was arrested, police found methamphetamine, glass pipes for smoking it, cash, the taser Dawson used on Joslin, and an illegal sawed-off shotgun. They also retrieved the computer and camera that Dawson and his accomplice, Alexander Poe, stole from Joslin’s home.

Poe was also involved in Dawson’s drug-trafficking ring. Police located Poe inside a “stash house” used by Dawson.

In 2021, the Alabama Policy Institute launched Dawson’s 1819 News operations in Alabama with a $1,077,500 contribution to 1819 Media LLC.

Today, Kenneth Bryan Dawson, via his 1819 News multimedia platforms, effectively serves as the public face and media voice of the Alabama Policy Institute.

Gee, what does Dawson keep in his desk at the 1819 newsroom? Maybe someone needs to check. Does Dawson have a "stash house" in Alabama? The questions never end with this guy.


Anonymous said...

Hey, you Liberals are all about "restorative justice", giving felons their rights back and such. So what's the beef with this guy getting a second chance? Oh, so he ain't Liberal and he is White, so he don't get a chance to start over?

legalschnauzer said...

Let me see if I have this straight: You are against felons having their rights restored, but you are fine with Mr. Dawson, a multi-time felon (including attempted murder) having his rights restored? And that's, in part, because he's White and a Republican.

You might want to rethink this because your take doesn't add up -- doesn't make sense, is incongruent, let's say.

Dawson is walking around a free man, so it appears his most important rights have been restored. What's your gripe, then?

e.a.f. said...

Anonymous certainly gave me a good laugh! OMG, how stupid are some of these people. First he truly does not understand "restorative justice". Restorative Justice is used to give the person who has been wronged, justice, so they feel restored to the place they were prior to being violated by an offender. Both the offender and victim must be willing to participate with open hearts and minds. It frequently does not reduce an offender's sentence.

From what I've read over the years felons or rather former felons do not have their rights restored in many states. they are denied the right to vote. Don't know how that came about, but the american idea of justice isn't about justice, more about, retribution. In Canada felons, drug dealers, murderers, bank robbers, what ever crime they've committed HAVE THE RIGHT TO VOTE. THEY VOTE WHERE THEY ARE INCARCERATED. Now of course in an area which has a number of prisons, some politicians were "concerned" they might not be successful due to the number of inprisoned people voting. Happy to report, its not had an impact. People incarcerated are as diverse politically as the general population. The idea of denying a citizen the right to vote is beyond the pale.

My guess is Dawon et al are laying the ground work for future "events". Yes, why would a person with his record suddenly become the head of a media organization? Well first off, they will control the narrative, or something close to it. Having some one who engages in thuggish behaviour make clear what they and theirs believe or want, may impact those who disagree. Lets not forget Roger Stone's "suggestion" two members of the House of Rep. be "offed", Nadler and Sewell. He has not been charged yet.

In the past it has not been unusall for opponents to say such things as, "wish the guy was dead; I could kill the guy, etc". Today, things are different. It now has to be taken seriously. The U.S.A. is not the U.S.A. of 40 years ago. Mass shootings in schools, nightclubs, shopping malls are a regular ocurrance. Open carry, the possession of machine gun type arms, are all over the place in the U.S.A.

Worst of all we had 6 January and that changed everything in politics in the U.S.A. We had people saying they wanted to hang the V.P. of the U.S.A. Really?? Not a fan of Pence, but it isn't just hanging him, its hanging the position and that simply is not something which can be tolerated in a democracy.

Killing is never right, whether its by a private individual or the state. In Canada the federal government stopped executing people about the time Trudeau Sr. became P.M. Our crime rate hasn't gone up. we've saved a lot of money and time with appeals. First degree murder is 25 yrs. to life. At 25 years you get to apply for probation. Now we have some "gentlemen" in a jail in Ontario who will never be given probation. Others, around the country, they'll get parolled but its for life and it can be revoked. We have no huge crime rate, beyond drug dealing.

The citizens might want to do a bit of digging on this new media mogul or should we say, mongrel. Its funny to see some one like A. defend the poor misunderstood "reformed" felon, who is just trying to make a living and provide jobs. Its a wonder he even was able to obtain a position of this nature. wonder who his backers are? wonder how many of them are police or politicians? wonder where the money is coming from.

Hello Legal Schnauzer. Happy New Year. I trust all is well. Here on Vancouver Island, we are being snowed upon for the third day. Given most of us live here to avoid the snow, its just not fair. O.K., O.K. who promised us justice or a snow free life. Its still a good life. We aren't in a war zone, no bombs being dropped on us. Guns have strict regulations, medical system still works. Life is good! Take care.

legalschnauzer said...

e.a.f. --

Thanks for a most insightful comment. Lots of good points. Glad to know things are going well up in Canada. Any way you could help arrange for Burton Cumminghs, Randy Bachman, and what's left of the real Guess Who to come down our way for a concert tour. Seeing them live is way up there on my bucket list.

For those who aren't familiar with these guys's brilliance, here are links to two of my Guess Who favorites -- one very well known, the other not so much. Always good to hear from you. Roger