Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Only in America

Let's remember what landed Rev. Edward Pinkney in prison in the first place. The way he was treated before he even went to trial could be the key.

Rev. Pinkney was charged with forgery, when there was no evidence of forgery. Mark Goff from the Michigan State Police testified on the second day of the prosecution's case. His testimony only indicated that he believed dates had been changed on the petitions that were the subject of the forgery counts. Goff had no opinion whatsoever as to whether Pinkney or anyone else made the changes. He also could not indicate how much time had lapsed with respect ot each date entry between the point when a date was first entered on the petition and the point if/when a change was made. If the changes were made, it could have been by the person who signed the petition.

Three defense witnesses testified that Venita Campbell altered the dates on the petitions at the residence of Marquette Coates while Rev. Pinkney was not present. Coates, Tammy Jude, and Quacy Roberts all testified that one of those witnesses, Roberts, took the petitions from Campbell.

Rev. Pinkney testified that Campbell was active in the recall effort and drafted the language for the recall petition. After the felony charges were brought, due to what the prosecutor wanted the people to believe, Campbell could no longer be located in the community.

The recall election was scheduled to be held May 6, 2014. But at the mayor's request, his friends, the Berrien County Sheriff's Department, began investigating the petition campaign, intimidating everyone who had signed the recall petition. The Berrien County Sherif's Department was riding three and four deep, trying to harass and intimidate the people who had signed. Again Mayor James Hightower did not care about the law. The Sheriff's Department, the prosecutor and the judges had a plan and would not allow anything to get in their way.

The force the Sheriff Department used to intimidate the community was unbelievable. The prosecutor sent a SWAT team to Rev. Pinkney's home to arrest him. He had just taken his wife out for her birthday when News 57 reported "Rev. Pinkney is on the run." Rev. Pinkney turned himself in the very next day.

Rev. Pinkney turned himself in the very next day and Judge LaSata set bond at $30,000 (unbelievable, only in America). He also stated that neither Rev. Pinkney nor his wife could use the internet and that the internet had to be removed from his home or he would not receive bond.

Freedom of speech has no meaning any more when government is in control. "You cannot use the internet, your wife cannot use the internet, and you cannot write articles for the newspapers." We are living in times when the people are only pawns for the rich and government has merged with corporations and become one force against the people.

At the preliminary hearing, May 23, 2014, no direct or indirect evidence against Rev. Pinkney was presented and Prosecutor Mike Sepic said you don't need any evidence to convict him. Then the judge ruled that the trial could go forward with no evidence.

The trial was set on Rev. Pinkney's birthday, Oct. 27, 2014. The all-white jury's decision was not based on a desire to achieve a just, fair or moral outcome, but was motivated by unrevealed, deeply held racial prejudice. We must stop all-white juries.

Rev. Pinkney writes, "I am now in Marquette Prison, a real hell-hole, because of racial prejudice. I am not mad or angry. I hope the world understands that some people hate just to be hating and do not have any morals. We must continue to stand up for what is right. We must stand together, people of all colors, and say no more. We can win! We can win!"

-Rev. Pinkney