Thursday, February 2, 2017

Ben Allen trial update

Update at 2:45 PM. The prosecution rested.  Judge Kidd denied a defense motion for a directed verdict.  The prosecution did not call former Downtown Jackson Partners secretary Linda Brune to testify. Will she testify as a surprise rebuttal witness?

Here are the latest updates on the trial of Ben Allen. Defense got on the board yesterday while attorney John Reeves and our illustrious District Attorney are trying to do their best impression of the Freebirds this morning.

Our Conscience-in-Chief, Jerry Mitchell, provided these updates on Twitter this morning:

 John Reeves, former DJP board member, says, "Ben Allen ran the show."

 Defense lawyer Charles R. Mullins called DA's request "outlandish" and not covered by any rule

 DA is trying to call Ben Allen's lawyer, Merrida Coxwell Jr., as witness, claiming he admitted Allen was guilty of a crime.

 Now the prosecution is saying it wants to call a lawyer as a witness.


 Defense deals serious blows to Ben Allen's prosecution. Here's the latest on

Defense scores a point. Audit official says he found no proof that Ben Allen embezzled any of $140K in DJP sponsorships

Othor Cain posted this short video of the testimony of Tameka Garrett and several updates on his Facebook page.  She is the daughter of Socrates Garrett.

Derrick Garner dealt a serious blow to the prosecution today.

Garner, who works for the state Auditor's office, was a witness for the state/prosecution and repeatedly said during cross examination by defense attorney Mullins that "Allen didn't embezzle money as alleged in several counts of the ten-count indictment."

Robert Smith, Hinds County District Attorney is conducting the redirect now in an attempt to salvage Garner's previous testimony.

Garner has been the lone witness today, Day 2 of the trial of Downtown Jackson Partner's executive director/president Ben Allen....
Count 2, Garner's answer is again (third or fourth time he's answered like this) based on his investigation Allen didn't embezzle the money because of receipts shown and DJP signing off on it.

Garner however concludes based on his interpretation of the law it was public money and Allen used it for personal gain, it becomes embezzlement...

Defense attorney Mullins said he's getting bogged down with public/private and redirected him to say "based on his investigation Allen didn't embezzle the money as charged in count two."

 Garner just admitted that his investigation did not conclude that Allen made false statements as charged in indictment number 9 to receiving 65K for a business incubator program....

 Garner, who is with the state Auditor's office, just admitted again that his investigation didn't find that Allen embezzled any of the money labeled as sponsorships in count 8 of the ten-count indictment....

 Garner admits that based on his investigation, he found no evidence that Allen embezzled the 86K associated with Mayor Yarber's inauguration gala....

 Oct 21, 2015, the date Garner turned his files in and halted his investigation. Garner didn't interview several key members with DJP.

Garner admits there are a ton of documents that could change the numbers presented in the indictment that he DID NOT REVIEW!...

 Garner just testified that $86K was raised and documented for the inauguration gala for Tony Yarber and that this money was collected by DJP...
He then said of that $86K, $44K is unaccounted for. Garner said no receipts, only checks were written(as expenses associated with gala), without supporting documents.....
There will be more to come.  Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

From what I read Garner did not finish the investigation. Also say where he stated that the money was deposited into a DJP account. The mixing of money into DJP account changed the money from private to public.

Anonymous said...

Seems that at some point the DA must identify the $$ and the use of the $$ for his personal use.

Anonymous said...

The DA is not charged with anything. He didn't have any part of the use of the money in question. Ben is the one who has some explaining to do.

Anonymous said...

WOW-----Do you really think Ben will go to jail-----he is such a nice man !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Attended the Gala. It was a First Class Event. The food was varied and delicious and there was plenty of room at the numerous tables. The music was excellent. A full stage and several drink stations. Don't know what it cost, but at least $100/person. Usually, a portion of the money from these types of events goes to retire campaign debt.

Anonymous said...

If private individuals voluntarily contributed to the Inauguration Gala and DJP was the condiut for collecting and spending this money what does RSS think is wrong with this? There is not a campaign finance violation, because these contributions and expenditures don't have to be itemized there. They were not tax dollars in any way or form - they were not collected as part of the BID. he only people that have a claim to how these dollars were spent are the contributors - obviously not including RSS since this whole circus is about his political differences with certain other Hinds County politicians including Yarber.

The interesting question about this part of the indictment is whether Ben regrets supporting this idiot for Mayor, just as he ultiately regretted his support for certain other Mayors who turned out to be criminal.

Anonymous said...

4:06, sounds like you missed the part where the voluntary contributions were put in the same bank account as the DJP money. That is where the problem is. The money when put into DJP account became the same as the other money in the account. If it would have been put into another account there would be no problem. But then again there would not have been the chance that some of the money would disappear.

Sounds like Ben was the idiot for mixing the money or the crook for taking part of it.

Anonymous said...

Cecil McCrory was to be sentenced today. But I can't find any new source that lays out what happened. Does anyone know?

Anonymous said...

Ben should be fired. It appears the Board of Directors approved all this mismanagement so Ben did not steal the money. If this is so then Board members may have some liability but as a board and not personally. Public or private on money is gray area so it should be treated as public to be safe. AG ruling on money should have been gotten years ago. Ben will walk and the party will continue.

Anonymous said...

2:13- Ben does not have to explain anything.
The DA must prove beyond a reasonable doubt
that Ben embezzled the funds.

Anonymous said...

4:38, the money was put into the wrong account. Ben then moved money out of that account for his personal use and to give to the mayor. That money was not for his personal use. You may as well face it. Ben is a crook and is trying to put the blame on an elderly woman. Sure does say a lot about his morals and the morals of the people who keep trying to defend him.

Anonymous said...

4:34, they put the sentencing off again. Looks like he spread a little more money around. As long as he has any money to give out he will probably stay out of jail. He will be sentenced when he does not pay off the right person.

Anonymous said...

4:38 Absolutely correct. The burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt is on the DA. At this point there is more than a doubt: it looks certain in light of the auditor's testimony and the Board's backing there was no embezzlement. Looks like RSS is just following another one of his obsessions crazy though they may be--just another variation of his obsessions we saw with Butler that the State went after him for. Not criminal to be crazy (as Hood is finding out), but the voters should retire RSS at some point because no one, innocent or not, is safe if you land in his delusional system.

Anonymous said...

I hope that woman APPEARS..Cross would rock.

4:06 said...

4:34 - you are jumping to the end question of whether the other money was public money, a fact that has not been proven yet. It is the expressed opinion of one person that the money is public money, but there are plenty of others that don't see it that way. If these dollars were public money, why weren't the employees of DJP government employees? They were paid with the money out of that same bank account. Were they allowed to PERS retirement benefits? Were they put on the state insurance programs? The Board of DJP was not named by public employees (Governor, Mayor, etc.) and thus the employees the board hired were not hired in accordance with government personnel requirements. So -- how do those 'government dollars' get used in all these ways that are not government based?

It looks to me like this is a case of the "Investigator" at the State Auditor's office stepping off into an area that they had no business. COnsidering all the areas that they choose not to get involved involving many clearly governmental bodies (Boards of Supervisors, City Councils/Mayors, etc.) it boggles the mind how they could decide to get into looking at this issue, much less "granting' whistleblower status to an individual. Maybe there is a personal issue involved???

Anonymous said...

8:31; Do you actually think that this account being public money means that all who come in contact with it are government employees, covered by PERS? Please tell us your mind doesn't work that way on a regular basis.

Anonymous said...

No matter what you call it, he had his hand in the cookie jar and got caught. Not any different than any other thug walking the streets of Jackson.

Anonymous said...

Being part of PEERS is one standard to determine public but there about 100 more. Got to look the State legislation it was created under and what happens to business that not pay the tax.

Burke said...

Jerry Mitchell catches a lot of grief on this blog, but I thought he wrote a fine piece about the Allen trial in this morning's paper. Even showed a little humor at the outset, saying that RSS "jumped the shark." Outdated, but still funny in context.

Anonymous said...

Burke, Mitchell is just out for drama that might win him some awards. He and his idiot editor love to keep the civil war on the front page of our statewide newspaper. Great for Mississippi's image.

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

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Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

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