Category Archives: News about suing the Minnesota courts

Conroy removed – was a bench warrant issued AFTER removal?

Below is a copy of the notice of removing Lois Conroy, signed by Trisha Farkarlun and provided to the Court 4/25/13.  It was never explained why Judge Alexander, who apparently stated from the bench that it was her case, would have been removed by Administration, and Conroy put on the file.  Why it is that members of the public are told they only have one removal (even if 20 judges are assigned – by virtue of Hennepin County ‘policy’) but Court Administration, which is not even a party, removes judges all the time – apparently any time they want.  This is not ok.

Notice the handwritten note,

“Hennepin [County court] does not have jurisdiction, I am filing this because I have great fear of appearing in front of her.”

Even if Hennepin County Court had jurisdiction after Farkarlun’s conviction was REVERSED in 2010, Conroy surely did not have jurisdiction after the notice of removal was filed.

What is going on?

Your Public demands answers to the following:

1.  Why was Alexander removed?  Who made the decision?

2.  Why was Conroy put on?  And why such late notice?  I am specifically asking whether the switcheroo was because of the removal papers.

3.  Did someone testify under oath in favor of a bench warrant?  What facts supported probable cause that a crime had been committed?  I cannot imagine that there are any.  Was the warrant just a MnCIS entry?  And if so, who made the computer entry Why can’t I look at MnCIS and tell what human being will stand by this warrant?

Minn. Const. Art. 1, sec. 10

Sec. 10. UNREASONABLE SEARCHES AND SEIZURES PROHIBITED. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated; and no warrant shall issue but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the person or things to be seized.

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Questions abound

Questions abound after Michael J. Davis entered an order in a case in which he is a party.

It started like this.

Our complaint was filed this morning.  (See Page entitled, “Our federal lawsuit against the Minnesota Courts at top of homepage.)  That complaint identifies Michael J. Davis as a defendant.

Along with it was filed a motion for ex parte TRO to enjoin Davis (who is the Chief Judge of the District of Minnesota as well as a defendant in the complaint) from having anything to do with the assignment of the case.  motion for ex parte TRO

And then he did just that.

The case was assigned initially to one district judge, who recused.  Recusal order signed by first judge assigned  The Magistrate Judge did not recuse.

Then a second judge was assigned, the magistrate remained the same.

A couple of hours later, Michael J. Davis, himself, signed an order purporting to disqualify the entire bench.  Disqualification order signed by Chief Judge Davis

The Plaintiffs are wondering what is going on here.

Judge Davis is a party to the lawsuit.  Plaintiffs had a motion pending that he not be involved in assignment of a judge, in any way, including that he not be involved in the out-of-district judge process.

That was apparently ignored.

Plaintiffs feel that Judge Davis should not have signed any order about this case.

It’s not clear why he did it.

As plaintiffs understand it, federal judges make their own decisions, including about recusal.  Plaintiffs did not see any order signed by the Magistrate Judge or the Article III Judge, suggesting that they had decided for themselves to recuse.

We can’t locate any authority for Judge Davis’ order.  His order does not cite any authority.  Even if there was an appropriate role for one judge in deciding to disqualify the entire bench, to our way of thinking, under these circumstances, that order should have been signed by the next-most-senior judge (not the judge who is a party).

It would be one thing if the randomly assigned Magistrate Judge had made the decision for himself to recuse.  Or if the Article III Judge did that.  It’s another thing entirely if Judge Davis decided that he was going to take other judges off the case.

We need to really watch the role of Chief Judge in this society.  We must insist on limits of that authority.

Plaintiffs’ case is about challenging this type of conduct when it occurs in the state courts.  Plaintiffs cite in their complaint, to a circumstance where a state “supervising” judge began to rule on another judge’s case.  Plaintiffs are about exposing that state judge conduct, to show why it’s wrong.  It’s ironic to see this development in this federal case.

We figure that Judge Davis did not have jurisdiction to sign the disqualification order.  Look at it, he signed an order in another judge’s case.

It appears our motion for ex parte TRO is still pending…

Citizens file lawsuit against Minnesota courts

Several Minnesotans have filed a lawsuit against Minnesota state courts (including the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, and the Hennepin County Court, aka the Fourth Judicial District), and several state court judges.  Some of those judges have now retired.

You can go to the page “Our lawsuit against the Minnesota Courts” at the top of the Home page to check out the complaint.

Several things happened fast today.  We’ll get you those asap.

Here are some snippets from the ‘introduction’ to the Complaint:

This lawsuit is the beginning of numerous claims intended to demonstrate why Minnesotans are not able to vindicate their federal constitutional rights in state court.  These are not just stories about plaintiff cases that did not succeed.  These are stories of civil rights violations by state court judges and staff. 

The introduction also includes:

If the [reason that federal constitutional rights are infringed in state court is because of lack of] money, then the discussion should be about money.  The State Courts are not only grossly underfunded, they had warned the Minnesota Legislature and Governor, repeatedly, that failure to adequately fund them would mean they could not protect constitutional rights.  What funding does the US Constitution require for the third branch of government, the watchdog branch, the branch responsible for protecting individual rights and liberty?

We will feature some of the Complaint’s specific allegations in separate posts.

The Next Chapter

hI have thought long and hard about the next chapter of my life.

I never asked to be the lawyer that would mount a fight for lawyer disability rights.  But it turns out that game is on!  Who would have thought when I set out on the journey to hold judges accountable, that it would lead into this area.

On some level, it makes sense.  In my humanness, I ended up being damaged by judicial abuse after sounding the alarm about judicial misconduct.  Retaliation, in its many forms, is a pretty common result for whistle blowers.  When I turned to the courts to help prevent more harm, they failed me.  When I asked for accommodation, they failed me again.  The combination of mounting evidence of judicial misconduct, ongoing health issues, and then, the failure to accommodate me, was the trifecta that took me down.

I do believe, had I been accommodated when originally requested, that my health would not have so suffered.  I did not ask for this job, the job was handed to me as part of my general judicial reform journey.

This is not an easy job.  But I am, now, equipped for it.

I am pleased to say I have recently gotten a “clean bill of health,” and although that does not mean there are no remaining issues, it means I am poised to be able to take on these issues, including by litigation.

In my deliberations, I have come to the following decisions:

  • I am done suffering in silence.  I am going to talk about how I was abused by certain judges.  I don’t want to stay in a victim space, I don’t think that’s healthy, either.  But part of the process of recovery is identifying the damage.  You cannot set off on the journey to recover, until you first identify the problem, mark that spot, and say, “I am starting from here.”  Life is complex, and I am not going to say that everything that has befallen me in the past two years was caused by one source.  I got pretty good during recovery from alcoholism at taking responsibility for my own “stuff.”  But I was damaged in part by judicial abuse, and I am not going to hide that, either.
  • I will continue to try to get the courts to respond to these issues.  I will continue to ask the state courts to take responsibility for their piece (not just for me, but for my clients), and I will continue to ask the federal courts to provide an impartial place to litigate these issues.  

I know this is asking judges to go outside their comfort zone.  But stop and consider how far I got shoved outside my comfort zone.  I stood up for the law.  I stood up for integrity in the process.  I stood up for my clients’ rights.  And look where it got me.  I have been forced to deal with some very uncomfortable things, in order to continue to do my part.

Of course, there will be those who will try to make it about me, hoping that if they can discredit me, that the issue will go away.  Clark is this…, Clark is that….  Really, that’s gone on for years.  People upset with me for refusing to engage in illegal behavior, or upset I point out problems with government, have called me all kinds of names.  This isn’t a new phase:  only the slurs have changed.  If I was going to let name-calling alone deter me, I would not have lasted a decade.

Moving this next chapter forward has been a significant part of my recovery.  Molding the clay that we hope will create judicial reform through litigation helped me to take my power back.  It helped me emerge from a cloud that had hung over me since I came into certain evidence a year ago.  I knew from the point I got that evidence, that my life would never be the same.  OMG was I right!  I have said before that this blog is therapeutic.  This project has, in the end, been therapeutic as well.  I appreciate those in my life who inspired me to do it, gave me hope, and saw me through it.

I appreciate those who are willing to give me the benefit of the doubt, who have decided that instead of attacking me based on rumor, that they will look at the evidence before making any decisions.

Look for more in the future…the next chapter…