by Edgar J.
June 24, 2001
Below is another
sampling of the thousands of comments and
feedback I have received from around the world in the past few days. As
before, I have purposely not included any of the many comments which
were laudatory of my work, my words and my motives,
though I want to acknowledge all of those incredibly kind thoughts
directed at myself. Thank you for them.
that I have read every single word of every single one of the
letters, emails and messages I have received.
I apologize for not having delivered to every one of you the personal
response and thank you that you deserve for reaching out, but there are
just so many hours in the day and my resources are limited.
rest of the world has moved on from this issue. The local media has,
too. The local population is also bored. Now is when they will
move in to finish what they began nearly one month ago. I haven't
stopped looking on, however, and neither have you, I hope. When I first
met with JoAnn the night of May 30, I promised her I would do all within my
power to keep her family together and get the property seizure reversed.
She has publicly stated since then that she does not want my help. I do
not believe that was a rational decision, nor one reached by herself without
undue influence from others. Therefore, I have continued, from the
sidelines and as best I can, to fulfill the promise I made. These
email updates have been a part of that campaign.
fact that the need to get me removed from this case has been the
only thing that Prosecuting Attorney Robinson, Public Defender Powell,
the local media and Sheriff Jarvis have all agreed upon. Within hours of
her public pronouncement that she wanted only Powell to represent her, leaving
her altogether without legal representation of her civil interests, Powell
and Robinson issued a joint statement that "the property is not in
issue." My investigators and I had been digging on that very
thing for only 48 hours at the time I was cut off, but we turned up some very
interesting and provocative things, only some of which I have shared with you.
JoAnn loses her land, worth upwards of $500,000, for $8,000 in back taxes and
"the property is not in issue?" I was the only one charged
with pursuing that issue. I was the only one representing her civil
interests. What happened? You have to admit, that is an
the fact that I stood ready to bail her out on the second day of her
incarceration and have continuously stood ready to do so ever since. We
have now collected $25,000 which could be posted for her bail. We
have all pushed for her release since her arrest. Consider that there
has been zero effort by Powell to get bail in any amount without
conditions set or the "release on own recognizance with conditions"
modified so that she could sign off on the terms of release. Nor has he
initiated a Habeas Corpus proceeding to get her released. She is
still in jail, folks. That may not seem strange to you, but to a
lawyer like myself, that is extremely odd and highly suspicious.
fact that she publicly disavowed the June 11 rally protesting her
being kept in jail under provably-false charges and under an outlandish
bail amount. Would you have done that without undue influence?
Consider that the local establishment, including the County Commissioners and
the local media, vilified the rally participants as
"antigovernment." Some media observers made the startling
claim that we were "white supremacists," though I don't recall
having seen anybody there who I knew to be a separatist, even. I'll bet
the white supremacy label surprised JJ Johnson, an earnest fellow
as black as the ace of spades, who was there with us to protest this
tyrannizing of an American family. And why would the Commissioners even
be mixing into this fray (oh, that's right - it's the county that stole their
land in the first place, isn't it)?
fact that all the players claim to be doing this "for the children."
Yet they took the children's sole asset, their home, for a pittance, in a
tax seizure that was procedurally defective, sold it and pocketed the
profit. They took their dogs and either shot them or put them in the
pound. They took the kids, split them up and have been shuffling them
from one foster home to the next. They locked up their mother on false
charges within days of the children watching their father lowered into his
grave. They expended unprecedented resources in combing through the
family's personal effects, searching for additional things to use to
justify the criminal charges for which their mother is still in jail.
The local media has marched lockstep with the local authorities in vilifying
the kids, their mother and all of us protesting their treatment. All
this, "for the children."
Enough of the
What's going on up there?
for sure, and I wish someone would explain it to me.
We were wondering what would be the appropriate
place to send money to help the family... - Jim
Benefit Account, c/o Panhandle State Bank, PO Box 967, Sandpoint, Idaho 83864.
It is interesting that this paranoid woman (according to the
neighbors) suddenly puts out statements that follow "exactly"
the path that is most pleasing to the government miscreants who have so
flagrantly violated her and her six fatherless and motherless and homeless,
children. Allegedly she has refused all assistance from
her only friends, and any association with all that truly love her and
her children and taken up with the government agents that have destroyed her
and her children's very lives and made them homeless. I would
caution all those who have lovingly and at a sacrifice, extended themselves
for this mother of six, - to "not trust what you have heard and read
about Mrs. McGuckin that allegedly comes from out between the bars of the
county jail." Do not abandon her. Not
at this time. - Jack
I celebrated Thanksgiving
with strict tradition this year. I invited everyone in my neighborhood
to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then
I killed them and took their land. - Cherokee
Although we have exchanged several e-mails, I will be
damned if I know what it is that you
DO want to do. - Karolyn
I thought it was
painfully obvious. I want to see this family put back together
again, first, with all charges dropped and their home returned to them, to be
left alone to live their lives as they see fit ("freedom," we used
to call it). Second, I want the perpetrators of this outrage brought low
and put out of business because, if they get away with it this time, there is
nothing to stop them doing it to your family or mine or anybody's else's, for
Rest assured that a public defender is always under
the thumb of the Judges they will appoint the most malleable attorney from
their "A" list. Don't ever expect Justice to be served by an
Attorney appointed by the same faction that led to this travesty. -
Is there ANYONE in the
courthouse who sees through all this and knows what's
going on and thinks in stinks? The clerk of court, the
county auditor, anyone? - Ed
Rumor is that
the rank and file throughout county government is generally outraged and appalled
to be associated with this entire affair...particular those working in good ol'
some thoughts for the McGuckin
Idaho Boycott. http://www.sandpointonline.com/
is an online website for the area. Here is where you can find your targets for
a Boycott. There are several options here, and a few hints... contact the
realtors, and tell them you were planning on buying land here to retire, but
because of the way government treats its widows and children, you have decided
to buy in Montana. The realtors
love to subdivide and sell to outsiders, make it sting. Also, tell the travel
groups here you have changed your plans for a vacation here and are going to
Washingon or whatever. There is also Lighthouse dressing made here -
contact them and boycott their dressings, and Coldwater
Creek is a major shaker here, tell them you will not buy from them. Happy
received heat from some locals for including letters that call for boycotts
of anything around here. However, boycotts, rallies, lawsuits, letters
to the editor and email campaigns are called "working within the
system." We get demonized for doing that, but the alternative is
something I will not advocate. It is all we have. When local
officials get told to shape up by local economic powerhouses, they listen.
Therefore, I not only include this call for boycotts, I
wholeheartedly support it and ask you to spread the word.
Why can't the trust
fund just pay the
back taxes? - Paul
About the taxes - I was able to pay back taxes
only on the 1.5 acre parcel. The 40-acre parcel went beyond redemption when
sold to the Korenguts by the county last October. About
the only way to get it back now is to show they are "dirty"
in the transfer, thus not "bona fide purchasers." Doing
that will require a lawsuit and the resultant subpoena power flowing to
the filing lawyer, in order to conduct a
proper investigation. There are enough defects in the tax sale
notice to file suit over and, likely, undo the
original seizure, but first a lawyer willing to do that needs a willing
client. We all know what her alleged attitude is just now. As soon as they got
her to say she no longer wanted my services for free, then both sides issued
the statement that "the land is not in issue."
My Uncle, who is a life long, 75 year old resident
of Idaho says that this lady has three years to pay back her back taxes and
reclaim her land. Is the money the commies say she owes a cumulation of
three years or more of unpaid taxes; and, if not, has she been offered the
opportunity to come up with the back taxes, pay them, and get her valued land
back? The second thing is:
where exactly did the money go that is the difference between the tax
(supposedly) owed and the amount paid by the folks from back East who
(supposedly) bought it. - Theodore
The 3 years
applies only if the county doesn't sell it, else there is only a 1 year
right of redemption. That's why the county held it for 15 months
before moving in like this. The sale cut off the right of redemption.
The difference went to the
county, per state law. Nice, eh?
We at Aryan Nations thank you for standing up for truth.
Hail Victory. - rgb
It is difficult to follow the path I have chosen in
life, sometimes, because so many want me to hew to their outlook in all
respects. Though some of your adherents expected that of me, and were then
disappointed, you never did. All manner of people become indignant if I am not
enough of a conservative, or enough of a liberal, or enough of a Nazi,
or....well, you get the idea. When all else fails, many simply employ the
tried and true, and attack me personally.
And I can't just walk away from these cases, so many
of which end up in the media spotlight due to their politically-incorrect
nature. You know full well how many times I tried to walk away from yours, but
finally couldn't bear to see what was being done to you in the name of
political correctness, despite the fact of how much we disagree on many
The fact is that truth comes in all shapes and sizes
and is not the exclusive province of any one group or ideological persuasion.
Nor do I claim to have a lock on what is or is not truth. I am, after all,
just one man, with any man's fallibilities, temptations and tendency to self
More than anything, I become outraged when
confronted by tyranny and injustice, such as that visited upon you last year.
Call it a weakness. Despite the outcome of that case, I remain steadfast in my
belief that you had nothing to do with the assault for which you were sued,
but were simply being pilloried for your beliefs and teachings.
Today, tyranny and injustice are being employed by
our elected officials against so many, not just the visibly politically
incorrect such as yourself, that I scarcely know where next to turn. I only
know that I cannot turn away. Unfortunately, though this is certainly a growth
industry, my shyster brethren haven't yet figured out how to make it turn a
buck, so it's an uphill battle for me, even in my own profession.
As for many of the checks coming from
New York...I'll bet most are from
upstate NY where I live in the rural Adirondack Mts not far from the Canadian
border...People from outside the area
don't realize how many constitution- oriented people there are here...they
called us radical because we opposed the self proclaimed saviors of the
enviros...there are a lot of good
people here who feel that sooner or later they will find a way
to get us out of here...People just
stay here like fleas on a dog and live in abject poverty...So,
many in the area that know about JoAnn, maybe relate to her situation and want
to help. - Judy
regard to Erina McGuckin's alleged bone weakness -- The media have assumed
it's because of malnutrition. I
would question anorexia/bulimia and possibly a condition that interferes with
calcium absorption (etc.). Also I would wonder at what age the problem
developed. - Alexandra
assumes this because that is what good ol' Phil Robinson has told
them...repeatedly. For more on this, read what Ingri has to say -
My friend here in Sandpoint revealed that Erina
is upset by the charges of
malnutrition in relationship to the condition
she has in her legs. She describes it as congenital and
apparently the medical discharge she received from the military
also reflects this diagnosis. The medical report on this from
the military could be in the file with the rest of the McGuckin
children but this file is sealed. As far as I know, it is not in
And I have
been assured by a confidential (very inside) source that the allegations of
the stress fractures in Erina's legs caused by malnutrition is pure
The more I read of this matter the worse it seems
to become. Obviously, there is much below the surface and in the
wings that I do not have the insight to perceive -- Indeed, why would someone
turn down free legal help in a situation like this?
I think your insight is working just fine.
(Y)ou are a
strange lawyer. Did you not learn in law school that the primary calling
of the lawyer is not to give, but to receive? Did your professors
not drum into your head that the only purpose in life for the lawyer is
to extract cash from whatever and wherever by any and all means expedient? -
This is a
true story: On my very first day of law school at UCLA, at the outset
of my second class, Criminal Law and Procedure, the professor opened his
lecture with: "Ladies and gentlemen, remember - if it ever comes
down to choosing whether you go to prison or your client does, always make
sure it is your client." I have never forgotten his advice
and realize how much it reveals about my profession.
Bryce Powell called me tonight and we talked
for about 20 Min...I asked about
the picture of him and JoAnn in the paper. He says she is relying on
him for emotional support and that he is not ashamed of that.
have missed that Law School lecture series.
written to you with respect to legal issues and assistance. Why do you
not attempt to help or even to
correspond? - Julia
received literally hundreds of pro
bono case requests and put them to one side, to consider more
thoroughly at another time. I am only one man
and can only do so much. I pursue only one of these pro bono cases at
a time because that is all I can afford to do. I also have a family to
look after and must earn a living.
Definition of "Hick"
H - ighly
I - ntelligent
C - ountry
K - id
I WAS A HICK BEFORE IT WAS DESIREABLE TO
BE ONE. - Barbara
Hooray for HICKS- we need more of them.
Is it safe to travel to Idaho? The Gestapo tactics
of the Bonner County officials make me wonder if visitors will be treated the
same as they are mistreating one of their own citizens.
safe. Just be careful not to be found to be interested in truth and
justice or politically-incorrect things and you will stay out of trouble.
closing thought or two.
started out on what has now taken the form of a quest for me with the
notion that this was just another pro bono case, like so many I have
handled in the past. This one became different, however, when so
many of you shared yourselves with me in so personal a fashion.
Suddenly, I became the taker, not the giver, because I found myself being
spiritually renewed by the outpouring of kindness and generosity directed
not just at JoAnn and her children but, incredibly, at myself, as well.
the ripe old age of 55, I had become far too jaded and cynical about human
nature and motivations, particularly as a result of my last high-profile
case (of course, going in, I had no idea this case would attain anything
like the profile that it did). You have shown me the error of my
now, as I type these words, tears well up as I recall so many of your
letters and emailed thoughts. How you have told me of your childhood
terrors and what resulted. About those of very limited means sending
so much in support of this family. About those with plenty sending so very
much. About your hopes and your fears. Of your kindness.
By comparison with what I have given of myself in this matter, I
have taken from you a hundredfold. This case could be the
textbook definition of why it is in every lawyer's self interest to handle
some cases pro bono. Thank you for making a difference in my life.
"I didn't say it would be easy. I just said it
would be the truth."
Copyright © Edgar J. Steele,
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