Thursday, August 28, 2014

State Auditor to Billy Joe: Pay $313, 726.

Looks like our little controversial judge who likes to administer hometown justice got into some hometown helpings. State Auditor Stacey Pickering issued the following press release:

Demand Issued Against Jones County Judge

JACKSON - Circuit Judge Billy Joe Landrum of the 18th Circuit Court District has not been following state law in administering a Jones County Community Services Program for offenders coming through his court, according to the State Auditor’s Office.  Landrum created the program in 1997 and has managed the account since 2005.

“The financial management by Judge Landrum does not conform to state law,” State Auditor Stacy Pickering said.

Pickering’s office has issued a demand against Landrum for $313,726.73.

Acting on an official complaint filed with his office, the Auditor’s investigation shows $4,699.52 in fuel purchases; $82,637.77 for vehicle purchases and $197,439.50 in courtroom security officers’ salaries and employer salary expenses were paid from the Community Services Program account but not associated with the program.  One or more vehicles belonging to the program were utilized for private travel.  The mileage and usage costs for the specific trips have been calculated by the Auditor to be $4,605.94.

The Jones County Community Services Program allows offenders to pay extra fines to perform public work instead of being incarcerated.  The extra funds deposited into the program made it self-sustaining. 

“While the program has merit as an alternative to costly incarceration of offenders, Judge Landrum did not use accounting practices that must be followed when dealing with payments to public entities,” Pickering said.  “His intentions may have been honorable but he did not follow the law.” 

Donations from a public entity to private individuals are prohibited by Article 4, §66 of the Mississippi Constitution.

The findings and information of this investigation will be made available to the District Attorney’s Office and turned over to the Judicial Performance Commission to determine if or what additional actions may be warranted.

“I’ve known Judge Landrum all my life; we are both from Jones County.  However, my sworn oath of office demands that I perform the duties of State Auditor which I will always strive to do,” Pickering added.


Anonymous said...

I guess since pickering is buying ads from kingfish we can never make a negative comment. He will block them like he does with Bill Billingsly.

Anonymous said...

This is obviously the Republican Auditor's attempt to derail Judge Landrum's re-election bid. I hope it backfires, and Judge Landrum is re-elected despite this transparent smear campaign.

Anonymous said...

Funny story. Taking a depo in jury room in Jones County Courthouse in Laurel. There are plenty of bathrooms in building. There is a private bathroom in jury room. Landrum interrupts depo and precedes to go number two in bathroom, telling us "this is my bathroom." You could hear him put the toilet seat down and everything. Hilarious. Everyone was cracking up when he excused himself to leave.

Calling B.S. said...

I find it offensive that Pickering feels it necessary to comment in the record that 'Landrum's intentions were honorable' and that 'I've known him all my life and we're both from Jones County'. Who the hell cares about that trivia? That has no place in public record or legal procedings.

Is Pickering:

A) Pandering to Landrum


B) Pandering to the rest of us who he hopes will conclude that 'Boy, this Pickering guy is even prosecuting his friends. He must ba an upright, honest and election-worthy public servant.

In either case, I call bullshit.

bill said...

I've never had a single comment blocked. I just haven't made any in awhile.

Anonymous said...

This state has some terrible judges.

Anonymous said...

The payoffs from the plaintiffs bar weren't enough for the judge? Rumor for a while has been that his casino debts get paid off by friends of the court.

Anonymous said...

7:50- They do and Jones county in particular does, which is kind of ironic considering how Republican of a county it is.

Anonymous said...

A well known family in Wayne County has had him on the payroll for years to keep their son out of trouble with the law. But he did a crime in another county that they can't buy! No telling how many DUI's this kid has - I know of three in Mississippi and one in California - where he was supposed to be drying out at the Betty Ford Clinic. Drug Court in Hattiesburg with a 3 felony DUI county - with Landrum's help, he case would have been wiped clean last December. That is until he was charged with another felony where Landrum can't help! Thank God the Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood's office is keeping a close eye on this case. The folks in Jones sand Wayned County need to step up to the plate and say enough to Labdrum and all the illegal activities such as drugs, etc. that is beig overlooked by Landrum and his thugs! I see the Judicial Performance Commission taking some action in the near future for Landrum.

Anonymous said...

They need to look at the deeds to his condo he once on the Alabama-Florida coast. An Attorney with a case before Landrum transferred ownsership to him before the case came up in Landrum's court, and yet Landrum did not recuse himself! DIRTY! Downed IRTY! DIRTY!

Anonymous said...

August 29, 2014 at 7:50 AM said:
"This state has some terrible judges."

While that may be a true statement 7:50 AM, we also have some of the best judges that money can buy!!!

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