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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Plea Bargains Made in Garrett Murder

Prosecutors accept plea arrangement to reduce charges against Adam Bolds and James Cook.
By Sid Riley

In a late breaking story, it was announced Tuesday that the States Attorney office under the direction of Glen Hess has accepted a plea arrangement with two of the three men accused of murdering Thadius Garrett at his home in Jackson County last October.
Adam Bolds who was initially charged with first degree murder was allowed to plead no contest to a second degree murder charge. This will result in a minimum prison time of 25.5 years for him. In a second plea deal, James Cook, III who was initially charged as a principle to first degree murder was allowed to plea no contest to being a felon in possession of a firearm. This reduced charge will result in only three years in prison. The third man accused in the incident, James Hardy, is being evaluated for competency at this time.
The reduced charges and plea deals angered the mother of the victim, Phyllis Garrett. She has lashed out in protest against Glen Hess and his department for their willingness to “deal” with the men accused of murdering her son. She has written a letter exclusively to the Jackson County Times expressing her feelings. This letter can be seen in its entirety in the “Letters to the Editor” below.
Letter to the Editor
Dear Editor:
On October 26, 2008 my 29 year old, unarmed son was shot in the back in his own front yard by a white male accompanied by two other white males. My three year old grand daughter watched from the doorway and what she had to tell me was “Nana they shot my daddy I saw him when he fell”. My family and I have been in the court room every time something has been done for this case. We became a little fearful when Mark Sims the current asst. State Atty. was fired. We were assurred wrongfully so that Stan Peacock could handle the case; we became concerned when he told us that #1 the death penalty was never a consideration for their office, and again when he looked at me during the trial and asked me who I was was - after many - conversations; and yet again when a key witness testimony was omitted and never caught until the trial was in progress and a mistrial had to be declared. We became fearful yet again when we were notified by friends who read in the paper that Stan Peacock had been reassigned to the Panama City office and we were never notified.
Today (7/21/2009) I was honored with a call from the honorable judge hess (please do not capitalize). hess called me to inform me of the acceptance of a plea bargain from Adam Bolds, James Cook, and that James Hardy was still awaiting his competency hearing.
I was never, prior to this call, aware of the potential of a plea bargain or any other offer to these men. I was told by the previous “very competent” (and I am being facetious) Peacock assistant state attorney that the state could not offer these men a plea without my agreement with the plea. That obviously was a bald faced lie in that this is precisely what happened. I called the state attorney’s office after a friend called and alerted me that Stan Peacock had been transferred to the PC office. I was not even given the courtesy of a call from his office to tell me who a contact person was or even that this had occurred. I was told that an attorney from Chipley would be handling the case and I could call his office and speak with him. I was reassured during this call that the appearance on July 21st would be for pretrial intervention only and that I would get a call to let me know what had happened and when the trial was set; that is if a date was determined at this time.
I asked hess why he did not call a recess and let me know that this was happening and he told me it happened and that given the same circumstances it would play out the same way again. I am appalled that hess or anyone else would assume me such a stupid person that I would allow myself to believe as he assurred me that had this been Judge Wright’s son it would have played out the same. The miscarriage of justice is so very phenomenal that I cannot imagine how to feel other than hurt, disappointed, grossly underserved, and misrepresented by the judicial system.
I am a well meaning and good intentioned person. I do not hit the mark 100% of the time all of the time but I do try; harder today than I ever have before. I am tired and sick of being slapped in the face and being asked to accept it as not a big deal. My child is gone and nothing can bring him back. Justice would have made this easier to bear.
What happened to 10/20/life is this just for drug dealers and people who kill cats! Are we so primitive that we are now going to allow my child and other people to be equated to animals or even equated to less than an animal. What next will we allow the selling of children for sex slaves and domesticated animals? But that was on Law & Order and that perhaps is where I got the 10/20/life stuff cause obviously it is not real life. Damn Jack McCoy for lying on all of those series. Thank you God for some humor in the stupidity and indifference of others.
I do feel this situation today had much to do with politics and I hope hess counted my vote in this play. If he runs against Jeffrey Dahmer I’ll cautiously campaign for Jeff.
Thank you, judge hess...call me again when you have some more great news, and for sure when it’s election time again.
P.S. Please note my response to Mr. Hess’s stupid comments in the daily paper. He looked for me in the court room. How? How did he look for me? He would not recognize my voice or recognize my face. He has NEVER spoken to me or met with me. Did he look at all of the inconsequential black mothers in the court room and decide I was not there. Hess YOU ARE A LIAR, you told me on the phone you did not have time to think of me or my family...your obligation was to the people of the state. His office was aware I would not be there for this session because of information I received from his office. Hess has done nothing for the people of Florida other than Adam Bolds, James Cook, and James Hardy and their families. He has incited a rage within me that will be assuaged and compensated and I do not mean in heaven. This particular brand of ignorance is intolerable to me...and I, in my state of lower socioeconomic being, loved that child with every fiber of my being. I lived and breathed for my children and my grandchildren. Hess you didn’t study your case well enough. I am poor, but dedicated to the job of being a mother. Bolds, Cook, and Hardy changed the rhythm of my heart and they will not pay because of your decision and you, my fellow yokesman, will pay IT may be a small price to you, but every dollar I earn for the rest of my life will be dedicated to making your career what it is...a JOKE. You are a liar and a fraud. I will stand on the street corner holding signs, make calls, write letters, visit churches, and communities lobbying for the person who decides to run against you and making my feeble attempt to ensure that the life of another person is not seen as so inconsequential as this. hESS.....DO YOU REALLY HAVE SO LITTLE FAITH IN THE JUSTICE SYSTEM, THAT YOU REPRESENT, THAT YOU BELIEVE A JURY WOULD NOT HAVE CONVICTED THIS MAN WITH EYE WITNESSES? OR DO YOU, HESS, ALSO FEEL THAT THE RACIAL ISSUES WOULD HAVE BEEN AN ISSUE THAT SWAYED JUSTICE? WHY WERE YOU AFRAID TO TAKE IT TO COURT AND LET A JURY DECIDE? HOW MANY BLACKS HAVE BEEN CONVICTED TO LIFE IN THE LAST YEAR HESS? IS THERE A LAW THAT SAYS IF YOU USE A GUN IN THE COMMISSION OF A CRIME YOU WILL GO TO JAIL FOR TEN YEARS;IF YOU FIRE THE GUN 20 YEARS; IF YOU KILL SOMEONE AUTOMATIC LIFE? IS THIS JUST A SCARE TACTIC OR IS IT A LAW THAT PERTAINS TO JUST BLACKS AND KILLERS OF CATS? ALSO WHAT HAPPENED TO THE THREE ATTEMPTED MURDER CHARGES, AND FIRING A GUN INTO AN OCCUPIED DWELLING FROM A VEHICLE? YOU SAY ADAM HAD NO PRIOR POINTS, HE WAS ARRESTED AND I STILL HAVE THE JAIL DOCKET PAPER FOR GRAND THEFT IN DECEMBER OF 2003. DID YOUR JUDICIAL SYSTEM LET THAT RIDE? WHY DIDN’T SOMEONE GO TO HIS HOUSE AND KILL HIM? THEY CALLED THE COPS BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT YOU DO WHEN YOU HAVE BEEN VICTIMIZED...UNLESS YOU ARE ADAM BOLDS AND HAVE A HESS IN YOUR CORNER.

Abundant Blessings!!
Phyllis G.

1 comment:

  1. I am not surpised that I see no comments posted. Circuit 14 aka KKK country, has always delivered "unfair justice." If you are Black and steal a piece of bubble gum from Wal-Mart, please be aware you have just signed your death sentence. Circuit 14 needs to be investigated for it's disparaging sentencing of minorities. Unfortunately, the minority community the resides in Circuit 14 aka Redneck Riviera, does not have the voice nor the resources needed to seek "fair justice." This is a mother that lost a child to an unneccessary crime regardless of the circumstance. I can only imagine if it was a white man killed by three black men, without a doubt, those three black men wouldn't have to worry about plea deals or court apperances. They would have been hung. May Mrs. Gilbert find comfort and seek GOD as this is a pain that will never go away. May GOD have mercy on the souls of Thadius Gilbert's killers and the Circuit 14 judicial system they have shamefully caused him to be a second victim of our "great judicial system."