WV Civil Rights Lawyer

Police Misconduct, Civil Rights Law

Clarifications to the State Journal story on the Flanary case

The State Journal posted a story on their website this morning on the Flanary case. Since this blog has been getting a lot of traffic on this case, I have the usually-absent opportunity to correct some slight inaccuracies in the story – including some of my quotes that are slightly out-of-context. Though you can hardly blame the reporter when the Complaint is 45 pages with 39 defendants.  The article stated the following:

The case, Flanary v. Pocahontas County et al., like many police or government liability cases, will be hard to prove, according to John Bryan, the Monroe County attorney who filed the suit.

Actually I said that police and governmental liability cases are difficult cases. I was not saying that there was anything particular about the facts of this case that will make it any more difficult to prove than other police and governmental liability cases.  The article further noted that:

The alleged incidents occurred in Pocahontas County and many of the involved parties live there as well. But Bryan said he opted against filing the suit there. Instead, the suit was filed in Kanawha County. “I think there’s a benefit to getting the whole mess out of Pocahontas County,” he said.

Actually, since several state agencies are defendants in the suit, state law mandates that the proper venue for the case is Kanawha County. Thus, it really wasn’t my choice – as I explained to the reporter when she asked me why it was filed in Kanawha County. Though it is true that there is an obvious benefit to not having to sue a county in their own courthouse.  The article continued:

Upon his release, Flanary had to go back to jail and immediately posted bail. As soon as he was released, court documents said, Snowshoe had him rearrested due to a perceived threat to Rock. Flanary’s lawsuit said the resort then barred him from all Snowshoe properties, including his own townhouse. Court records said Snowshoe officials eventually had him arrested a third time, alleging a harassing phone call between Flanary and a Snowshoe employee that was immediately acted upon by authorities.

Actually, it was vice-versa. The first time he was released on bond, indeed the same day, Snowshoe contacted authorities and said that he allegedly made a threat to commit a crime over the phone.  And Snowshoe did not bar him from entering his own townhouse, but they did bar him from all other Snowshoe property – though they didn’t explain to him how he would actually get to his townhouse without touching foot on Snowshoe soil since it sits in the middle of the resort.   Then, the second time Mr. Flanary bonded out from jail, Snowshoe had arrested for allegedly driving into the neighborhood that Mr. Rock lives.

– John H. Bryan, West Virginia Attorney

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January 8, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. Norman Alderman // April 15, 2009 at 4:32 p

    What happened with Deputy Wilfong!

    I was checking to see if the word was on the street yet about Deputy Ben Wilfong. Now that I know that it is the story can be told.

    Deputy Wilfong had run up a debt with a local farm supply store. The owner brought the issue to magistrate court and they had a hearing. At the hearing, Wilfong claimed that he had paid the bill sometime before. Magistrate Kershener continued the case until Wilfong could present his checks proving that he had paid the debt. Wilfong agree to do that.

    When the hearing was again held, Wilfong had proof that he had paid the debt and that the owner had forgotten or was mistaken about the debt.

    He presented his checks as proof of payment. But when the owner examined the checks his crap detector started firing on full tilt. He couldn’t figure out exactly what was wrong but he knew that something was wrong (goes to show that you can’t fool an old country boy) As he looked further, he figured it out.

    The checks were written on the “Pendleton Community Bank” back in a previous year but the problem was that there was no Pendleton Community Bank in existence at the time. That bank was still the “Pendleton County Bank.” It didn’t become the new bank until LONG AFTER THE CHECKS WERE WRITTEN.

    That proved that the checks were fraudulent and was a prima facie case of an attempted fraud upon the court.

    Janet continued to question Wilfong about the checks but suddenly he realized “THAT HE HAD TO GO TO WORK.” So he left the court room without being dismissed by the magistrate. AND THERE THEY WERE.

    Well, what the farm boy figured out was that Ben Wilfong had never paid his bill but was in reality pretending to have paid it with a check that had been written on a current Pendleton County Community Bank. He had merely written a check(s) on his current bank account and back dated the payment, made a copy of the check(s) (strangely enough just the front of the checks)(The bank would have had the farm supply owners name and in this case wouldn’t have had anything on the back because it had never been processed by the bank.)

    Wilfong was trying to trick the magistrate and in the end he apparently thought she was not really smart. But he was fooled!

    The case is still open!!(If I were a betting man, I would bet that Wilfong will be writing a new check to the farm supply owner before they go back to court.)

    And yes, the sheriff knows all about this. You saw from the pic in the Times this week that life goes on for Wilfong without interruption. The irony is that he should have been in line with handcuffs just like the dopeheads.

    But remember we have a separate law for the police than that of the dopeheads. The police can molest children, grope our women and girls, and say whatever they want in court and no one is going to challenge them, except for some old country boy who wants his money for good services rendered.

    Wilfong should be in jail not out on the street writing tickets.

    And here is my point: If you can’t trust bona fide, trained law officers to obey the law then you can’t trust the Barney Fife’s of the community to do any better.

    Comment by Norman Alderman | April 30, 2009 | Reply


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