MARCH 5, 2012

Only people who believe in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny believe that justice is blind. Power and money, along with any number of other influences impact on whether criminal charges are lodged against certain people by prosecutors all over the world.

Some jurisdictions are more corrupt than others when it comes to not prosecuting crimes involving politicians, and Miami-Dade County is certainly among any list of places where political influences play a big part in whether criminal charges will be lodged against certain people.

My story earlier this year about Florida Bar attorney Tomas Kroeger certainly qualifies as one of those cases, as does the direct involvement of State Attorney Katherine Fernandez-Rundle in trying to stage-manage the dismissal of the charges against Michelle Spence-Jones last year, and how she attempted to keep Spence-Jones from returning to the Commission before the hearing to fire Police Chief Exposito as a way to guarantee the Reverend Commissioner Dunn’s vote to fire the Chief.

It was widely expected therefore that the case of assault by Commissioner Marc Sarnoff in attacking Reid Welch for spraying painting some of Sarnoff’s campaign signs across the street from his house before last November’s election would eventually be dismissed without Sarnoff being brought up on charges.

The case was dismissed on January 23, 2012.

The surprise was not in it’s being dismissed, but rather in the blatant, egregious way that it was.

Assistant State Attorney Johnette Hardeman, who was the prosecutor in this case, and who is credited with preparing the Close Out Memo is either a moron, or worse, an ass-kisser who put together the memo on orders from above without bothering to read her handiwork, because in trying to claim that the “evidence” was too contradictory to take before a judge or jury, she ended up using portions of the police reports that only underscored that the claims in the report are what was really contradictory.

Below is a portion of the memo that describe the actions of Sue McConnell, Sarnoff’s neighbor and closest politicalconfidante in this incident.

In the first highlighted portion it describes how Sue McConnell, on the scene,  was on her phone at the time of the incident

In the next highlighted portion, the report claims that Sarnoff’s wife, who supposedly responded to McConnell’s initial phone call was also on the scene and was the one who called the police because, “ “Ms. McConnell then yelled for someone to call 911.  She said she did not have her cell phone with her at the time.”

What The Fuck!?!

McConnell is there, and she “was on her telephone at the time,” and then she’s there, and doesn’t have her cell phone???

While McConnell might claim in response to this revelation that she did her phone calling before going out of her house and crossing the street to challenge Welch, the report doesn’t support that because Sarnoff’s wife, and the other witnesses support the claim in Welch’s statement that, “A woman told him he could not do that. (Paint the signs.)” The woman, subsequently identified as Sue McConnell, was on her telephone at the time. The Complainant said he turned and walked over a few feet towards Ms. McConnell at which time he was tackled  from behind by the subject.”

McConnell couldn’t have been at home on the phone, and out on the street on the phone, because the report states that on top of everything else she was so close that:  “Ms McConnell also fell and landed on top of them.

(The complete Close Out Memo in PDF form is at the bottom of this post.)

Then of course there’s the claim that McConnell makes that she “felt that her wall was going to be next.”

That’s all bullshit.  Reid Welch was spray painting a sign that was bolted on a wall ACROSS and DOWN the street from Sue McConnell’s condo at 3090 Virginia Street.  Sue McConnell did not have any Sarnoff signs on the wall that surrounds the condo compound that she lives in, before, during or after this incident, and Reid Welch, as whacked as he might be about spray painting Sarnoff’s signs, never displayed any interest in spray painting blank walls.

Then, there’s the claim made by the prosecutor that, “It is relevant to note that the incident took place outside of the Subject’s home.” thereby conveniently providing the basis for a defense of his home and property by Sarnoff.

The truth is that the incident DID NOT take place outside of Sarnoff’s house, it took place across the intersection and down the street from Sarnoff’s house.  Sarnoff did not come out his front door and accost Welch; he crossed a traffic circule, and ran midway down the next block before he jumpeed Welch from behind, removing any claim that what he did was reactive or instantaneous.

Sarnoff had more than enough time to consider his actions on the run from his house to the time he jumped on Welch.

Below is a diagram that I posted on November 21st, that shows the relationship of the properties, and the relative distance Sarnoff had to go in order to attack Welch, and I’ve now included where Sue McConnell lives.



Under any rules of evidence the statements Sue McConnell made would have to be considered biased on the basis of her relationship with Sarnoff that goes back to the fight over the Home
Depot in the mid-2000’s, before he ran for office in 2006, and it is common knowledge, that if required, McConnell would gladly follow Sarnoff around with a roll of toilet paper to wipe his ass.

Therefore, any prosecutor worthy of the title would only dismiss charges if they didn’t have  other witnesses.

In this case, the police got statements from at least two independent bystanders at the Dog Park across the street from where this incident took place that were both consistent with the “facts” and support each other down the line that Sarnoff attacked Welch. 

Those witnesses were Megan Deehan and Alexander Maruri, and their statements can be read in the PDF below.

Yet, even though both of these individuals gave statements that supported each other, and neither had any relationship to Sarnoff, wiz-bang prosecutor Hardeman was quick to conclude that, “The conflicting nature of the statements prevents proving a criminal charge beyond a reasonable doubt.”

There was absolutely NO REASONABLE DOUBT in the claim that Sarnoff left his home, ran across the Traffic Circle in front of his house, on to the sidewalk, and down 2 houses to jump on Welch.  None what-so-ever. 

Reid Welch, Megan Deehan and Alexander Maruri all stated that Sarnoff jumped on Welch, and even McConnell would have had a hard time denying that fact under oath on the witness stand.

The additional smokescreen that Sarnoff came out of his house because, “he was going to the aid of a friend who he thought was in danger,” is also bullshit.

With all respect to the effervescent Ms. McConnell, in a street fight I’d put my money on her knocking out Welch and Sarnoff without assistance. 

In fact, the only way that Sarnoff could claim that he was defending Ms. McConnell against Welch was if Welch was in the act of physically attacking her, and that was never alleged.

The claim by the prosecutor therefore that that there is a conflict in the statements is absolute bullshit!  

If there is any conflict in the testimony - and criminal and civil trials are ALWAYS the result of conflicting testimony - it’s the prosecutor’s responsibility to present the people’s case to a judge and/or jury so that THEY are the ones who sort out these conflicts and determine whether the charges are provable beyond a “reasonable doubt.”

The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office has a bad record with police departments throughout the county for dropping cases on the basis of this excuse, when in fact many believe it’s because prosecutors are lazy or unwilling to let a judge or jury make the decision, even after egging the cops on to file the charges.

Now, this doesn’t in any way excuse Reid Welch, or justify his crazy, propane huffing fixation on spray painting Sarnoff’s signs, but there’s a big difference between spray painting political signs, and jumping on someone and making threatening comments like, “I’m going to kill you.”

This was a piece-of-shit, cut-and-paste Close Out Memo,  written by an Assistant Prosecutor, who was probably directed to do so by Jose Arroyo, Fernandez-Rundle’s Chief Assistant State Attorney for Special Prosecutions, to clear Fernandez-Rundle’s pal, Sarnoff.

The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office is, and has been in bed with the corrupt and crooked politicians in this community for a long time!  Look closely and you will see that the overwhelming majority of the “political” cases that are prosecuted by Fernandez-Rundle involve Black politicians who aren’t part of the power base in this community, and who are inconsequential to her reelections efforts.

Fernandez-Rundle doesn’t prosecute politicians who have access and control of the illegal Absentee ballot machines in Miami, Hialeah and Miami-Dade County, or who have a power-base in the parts of the county she needs for reelection.

Among the list of bad things that Miami is known for, having one of the most politically corrupt Prosecuting Attorney’s in the country is certainly a reason why this community has become known as It’s Miami, Bitches!!

(Our thanks to The Straw Buyer for obtaining this Close Out Memo)


            The effervescent Sue McConnell


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