Nov 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing all readers a wonderful holiday. I shall be at work. Am not feeling the holiday spirit this year. I am trying to remind myself again of what I am thankful for. It ain't easy.....I am thanful for everyone who read my dribble and gives me feeback when I really need it. Sometimes that is the only thing that keeps me sane. So God Bless and enjoy the holiday.

Nov 23, 2009

City lights ain't so pretty, just ask Mayor Dixon

Baltimore mayor's case returns to jury
Dixon could face jail time for use of donated gift cards

Sheila Dixon is accused of taking about $630 in gift cards. (Rob Carr - AP)
Enlarge Photo

By Annie Linskey and Julie Bykowicz
Monday, November 23, 2009

Jurors deciding whether to convict Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon of theft-related charges will return Monday for a third day of debate.

Lawyers in the case sounded unconcerned about reported contention among jurors who have been working in a small room for a total of 11 hours, and legal observers keeping tabs on the proceedings said the panel seemed to be taking its responsibilities seriously.

"Those who predicted a swift acquittal or conviction have been proven wrong," said Baltimore Federal Magistrate Judge Paul W. Grimm. "It gives you faith in the system."

Dixon is accused of stealing about $630 in gift cards that prosecutors say were intended for the needy.

Jurors sent several questions to the judge shortly after starting deliberations Thursday afternoon but appeared to make little progress. "Things are getting a little out of order among us," read a note to the judge from the jury forewoman Thursday.

On Friday evening, the nine women and three men showed little emotion as they sat in the jury box just before the judge dismissed them for the weekend.

State Prosecutor Robert A. Rohrbaugh said he couldn't infer much from the jurors' notes. "Obviously, there are jurors on each side who have strong feelings," he said, adding that it was "too early to tell" whether the case would end in a hung jury. Deputy State Prosecutor Thomas "Mike" McDonough said, "You drive yourself crazy trying to guess."

Dixon's lead attorney, Arnold M. Weiner, said the jury is "taking the serious charges to heart." He also said the hours of deliberation show that the jurors are being conscientious.

Kenneth W. Ravenell, a Baltimore defense lawyer not involved in the Dixon case, said the hours of deliberation are "not unusual in a case that involves the mayor of Baltimore City."

"They don't want to be seen as rushing to judgment," he said. "However they come back, they know they're going to be scrutinized."

The mayor is charged with five theft-related counts, including one felony, stemming from a nearly four-year investigation into City Hall corruption that has centered on relationships between public officials and developers who have relied on tax breaks for projects. Dixon can be convicted of no more than three counts, fewer than half the number she faced when the trial began last week.

Under instructions given to the jury, Dixon can be convicted of theft or embezzlement -- but not both -- because those charges are based on two contradictory theories: that Dixon had no right to possess the gift cards and therefore stole them or that Dixon had a right to possess the cards but misused them.

The judge tossed out two of the original seven counts last week, when the state rested its case without calling as a witness Ronald H. Lipscomb, a developer who said he'd given Dixon gift cards for charity.

If found guilty of any of the charges, the 55-year-old Democratic mayor could be forced out of office, lose her $83,000 annual pension and be fined or face jail time.

-- Baltimore Sun
Shelia Dixon. Went shopping with a bunch of gift cards intended for the poor and needy. Haven't had a chance to watch the news yet, but I know if I stole gift cards I would go to jail. Our own mayor for fucks sake. I am sure you can imagine the needy kids and families who could have really used those gift cards this holiday season. I do know she is going to face a trial. Will she go to jail? I don't know. I have to watch the news. It's an embarrassment to our city. I have grown weary of politicians and their corrupt bullshit. Plus, how the worst part is if she was going to steal, shit, she should have at least made it worth her while. Growing up our city had some pretty good people to represent us. They are gone. So is my patience with another politician doing something stupid. It must run in the blood.

Nov 22, 2009

Made it to the end of another work week

Whew, go in at 1 and get off at 6 tonight. Gravy.. Don't go back til Wednesday. I can breathe. I am working a double on Thanksgiving. I am so sore. I am starting to feel my age. But I also feel the green paper in my pocket which actually makes my back feel better...LOL...So it's off to the shower, put on my happy uniform, and happy face and smile for 5 hours than I am DONE!..Than I can be my usual super bitch self on my days off. Actually I plan on having a very peaceful two days off. I have some good books. I am really pissed that I missed Stephen King's book singing in Baltimore. Right down the damn street from my house. I would have loved to have a signed book from him. I am not a huge horror fan, but I have always had a fondness for his writing. It's not typical slasher horror. He actually can write. I have a few new authors I am reading. That is what brings me joy. Peace and quiet and my books and camera. My digital camera is very special as Kenny had bought if for me when we moved to Ga to capture the beauty of the lake. It was also his way of showing us that we were starting to get ahead financialy and could start buying a few nice things. So the camera is very special to me. Time to rock n roll and be the nice waitress. Question of the day...Whatever happened to Baby Jane?