picture = 1000 votes

Politics in Memphis, as in most places, is pretty inbred. Even though power has been parceled out among the players along clear-cut jurisdictional and functional lines, the reality is that everyone is partying together and in bed with everyone else.

In the picture above, we see James Prindle’s judge Bobby Carter with his impartial arm around James Prindle’s prosecutor Jennifer Nichols at a fundraiser for Carter on May 28, 2010.

Last week I had a conversation with an aide of Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell in which the aide asserted that there is nothing Luttrell can do to influence Judge Carter’s handling of James Prindle’s case—that Bobby Carter’s criminal court is outside Luttrell’s jurisdiction. True.

And yet here is a picture of Mayor Luttrell at the same Bobby Carter fundraiser (if you blow up this picture, you’ll see the lady is wearing a Bobby Carter for Judge sticker). Luttrell is apparently one of Carter’s supporters, and Luttrell is influential. I think we should ignore what Mayor Luttrell’s aide said and continue sending Mr. Luttrell e-mail messages as I suggested in my June 23 post. They talk.

It’s worth the effort. Your e-mails to Mayor Luttrell over the weekend had the desired effect. A conversation at the bench on Monday was overheard. Audible consternation was shared by Judge Carter, Prosecutor Nichols, and Defense Attorney Ferguson.

The whole world is watching, folks.

Mayor Luttrell’s aide told me that Luttrell is the chief executive of Shelby County, not the city (down here in Texas we call these people “judges”; in Tennessee they are called “mayors”.) He suggested that we should be contacting the Mayor of the City of Memphis, instead. After all, it is the poor work of the detectives on his city’s police force that failed to identify the real perpetrator of this crime of which James has been wrongfully accused and convicted.

This is a good idea. The name of the mayor of the city of Memphis is A C Wharton, Jr. His e-mail address is Mayor@memphistn.gov.

Mayor Wharton may be able to empathize with James’ predicament. In 2007 his son, A C Wharton III, then 34, was convicted of the statutory rape of a 13-year-old he met in an Internet chat room. Wharton III has recently been released from a Knox County jail and, as he pleaded guilty, he will now be a registered sex offender. Mayor Wharton is a lawyer. He knows the consequences for his son are serious and lifelong.

Perhaps Mayor Wharton will take an interest in helping spare an innocent boy a fate far worse than that which has befallen his own son. Wharton is said to be a good man and an extremely popular politician.

Write to him. Tell him what you think of what’s being done to James. Maybe he will listen. Maybe he will ask Judge Carter to reconsider his court’s politically self-destructive actions with regard to James. It cannot hurt. It might even help.

Judge Carter knows this trial has placed his court in a bad light. On Monday, he, Jennifer Nichols, and Claiborne Ferguson were overheard discussing how they could bury the transcripts from the previous Friday’s court session.

Believe me, all these politicos understand that crime is bad for business, both public and private. Memphis has been recently ranked as the #5 city in the US for high rates of crime. The way to turn this around is not to be putting innocent people, especially vulnerable juveniles, in jail or prison. It only fuels disrespect for the law, the police, and public officials.

Whether or not they are all friends, these politicians do not want the mud being stirred up in Carter’s courtroom to splash on them. The injustice being perpetrated against James in Carter’s court may be within Bobby Carter’s sole jurisdiction, but it’s everybody’s problem and it’s getting bigger, more visible, embarrassing, and—here is the crucial thing—more memorable.

I talked yesterday with a scriptwriter in Hollywood with one of the networks. He is developing a script based on James’ story. When this story airs in a year or more, the voters will be reminded of what is happening in Memphis today.

No matter how dismissively some politicians may regard voters in any given jurisdiction, most voters are not retarded. They may have short attention spans, but many have long memories. Long enough to be brought into the voting booth.


Groove of the Day 

Listen to this selection from the Deliverance soundtrack, “Dueling Banjos”

4 Responses to “picture = 1000 votes”

  1. 1 Andy Rich
    June 29, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    Isnt all this a massive conflict in intrests? Surely if all these people know each other its not a fair trial?

  2. June 29, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    I sent an e-mail in support of
    James to the Mayor of Memphis. Hope he helps James.

  3. 3 Frank Manning
    June 29, 2012 at 9:41 pm

    I just sent the following e-mail to Mayor A. C. Wharton, Jr., of Memphis, TN

    email to: Mayor@memphistn.gov
    Hon. A. C. Wharton, Jr.
    City of Memphis, TN

    Subject: James Paul Prindle – DOB 02/23/1995 – DOCKET 110218010142158

    Dear Mayor Wharton,

    I am writing to you in support of James Prindle, a Memphis teenager who was recently tried and convicted for a crime he did not commit. The judge at the trial was the Hon. Bobby Carter. I am a retired resident of Kirkland, Washington, but I volunteer my time at a nearby Washington State juvenile correctional facility for younger boys.

    I am convinced James is innocent of the charges against him. I have corresponded with him in jail. James is no sexual predator, and the terrible crime he is accused of just does not comport with his strong faith in God and in Jesus as his personal Savior. It just doesn’t make sense.

    James has many supporters all over the world who do not believe the whole truth was presented to the jury. There is significant reason to believe other individuals present at the crime scene were, indeed, the real perpetrators of the unspeakable deed. The Memphis Police Department is aware of these persons, but for reasons that are beyond my comprehension they chose to falsely accuse James of this serious crime. As a result of your police department’s shoddy investigation, the monster that beat and raped a 2 year old baby girl is still roaming the streets of your city and endangering the lives and safety of your citizens.

    I am requesting your immediate intervention to literally save James’s life. One must consider this a matter of life and death for this boy because once he is transferred to prison, you know as well as I do how other convicts treat a person convicted of these types of charges. They will surely kill him in short order. Do you or Judge Carter really want to risk having to stand before the judgment seat of Almighty God and explain why you did nothing to help this innocent boy?

    If you want, I can link you to further information that can clarify these concerns in more detail.

    I am willing to help make a national news story out of James Prindle’s case. The reputation of your city, your county, your culture, your region of this great nation of ours, will be impacted as more and more decent, law-abiding Americans find out about this terrible injustice in Memphis. There they go again with their redneck “justice”—that’s what a lot of Americans will think. Please help us instead turn this thing around and let people celebrate you as a person who helped right a terrible wrong.

    Kind regards,

    Frank Manning
    Kirkland, WA

  4. 4 Jim
    January 10, 2014 at 5:42 pm

    I wish Furgeson or somebody on this case would realize its pointless to leave James’ life in the hands of these friends. If Nichols really does support Carter then why is it that this case ended up in this court. It’s because Claybourn Ferguson is a total moron. He obviously doesn’t care what happens in this case if he doesn’t see the conflict of interest. I mean, it’s one thing that Nichols and Carter are in bed with each other. And it doesn’t bother me the state doesn’t care. I would expect that from government. It’s when the lawyers who are supposed to represent their clients best interests and they act like they can care less. Claybourne Ferguson needs to be taken off of this case. Somebody should point out the conflict of interest in this case. The fact that nobody cares to ignolege this conflict of interest, probably because they are to afraid of getting in trouble, makes be seeth. I just want the people who say they support James to remember at the end of the day that it’s James Prindle who has suffered the most in this case.

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