Fear ye not. Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will show you today.
— Exodus 14:13
LAWRENCEBURG, Tenn. (May 25. 2016) — The Holy Spirit gave me the words to speak at my hearing this morning in Lawrence County, Tenn., circuit court as I presented my amended motion to dismiss supported by a request to take mandatory judicial notice.
By Arthur Jay Hirsch
My argument before judge Russell Parke was simply that judicial neutrality, impartiality, evenhandedness and fairness called for my case to be dismissed since the court appointed special prosecutor, Tammy Rettig, had failed to appear in court for the scheduled May 2 hearing; and further, there had been no contact or communication by the special prosecutor with the court clerk giving a reason for her non-appearance.
I had been criminally charged for exercising the constitutionally protected right to travel on the public right of way in Tennessee — “driving” without a license, without insurance and without tags.
Members of the local DA’s office had recused themselves from representing the state in my cases for about a year and a half since they are all named in a civil rights violation law suit I filed in federal court in 2014, and felt there was a conflict of interest.
However, when it became obvious from my pleadings that Ms. Rettig was potentially facing criminal contempt charges. they came to her rescue by rescinding their request for a special prosecutor pro tem on May 10 (one day after I filed my request to take mandatory judicial notice) and said they were now willing to represent the state in my case. The local prosecutor, Gary Howell, also had failed to notify the court of his intentions to swap roles with Ms. Rettig prior to the May 2 hearing.
So, both DA offices failed to communicate with Judge Parke regarding the non-appearance.
Shunning ‘moral evil’ of favoritism
I sensed the Holy Spirit guiding me in my argument, which covered a lot of ground for nearly 20 minutes, including God’s moral mandates regarding “no respect of persons” and Judge Parke’s sworn oath of office, and overrode Mr. Howell’s weak statements of protest.
I praise the Lord for fulfilling His promise in Isa. 54:17 “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment, thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.” Indeed, I can testify that it pays to put all your trust in the Lord in times of distress, for He is our refuge and fortress, and is a gracious “rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.”
At the earlier hearing, the judge admitted that he would have immediately signed a capias bench warrant for my arrest had I failed to appear for the hearing without notifying the court of a valid reason for my absence. On the other hand, no swift punishment was meted out to Ms. Rettig by Judge Parke for her disobedient “no show.”
The judge refused to rule on the accused’s motion to dismiss, notwithstanding Ms. Rettig’s unaccounted-for absence. The judge postponed ruling on the accused’s motion to dismiss until the hearing today, which benefited Ms. Rettig and prejudiced the accused. The judge’s refusal to rule promptly on the accused’s motion to dismiss and the postponed hearing thereof until May 25 showed his partiality, favoritism, leniency and respect of persons towards the DA. Respect of persons is a moral evil, sin, transgression of divine moral law and is prohibited in the oath of office and in Tennessee’s code of judicial conduct.
RULE 1.2 Promoting Confidence in the Judiciary A judge shall act at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the independence, integrity, and impartiality of the judiciary, and shall avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety.
RULE 2.2 Impartiality and Fairness A judge shall uphold and apply the law, and shall perform all duties of judicial office fairly and impartially.
RULE 2.3 Bias, Prejudice, and Harassment (A) A judge shall perform the duties of judicial office, including administrative duties, without bias or prejudice.
A judge who manifests bias or prejudice in a proceeding impairs the fairness of the proceeding and brings the judiciary into disrepute. A judge must avoid conduct that may reasonably be perceived as prejudiced or biased.
Case that remains rife with appealable wrongs
I’m appealing my 2013 case which will start June 3. I believe the Lord will give me a victory over the conviction in appeal because of judge Stella Hargrove’s numerous errors and violations of substantial rights. Please continue to pray that the Lord will give me wisdom in drafting my appeal, and that He will receive all the praise, honor and glory from a triumphant overturn.