On August 18, 2009, Dearborn Circuit Judge James D. Humphrey ruled that I was no longer fit to exercise parenting time with my 3 & 5 year old daughters. Assuming that this isn’t your first visit to this blog, you are probably well aware that I strongly disagreed with Judge Humphrey’s ruling. You are also probably aware that I have expressed my opinions of Judge Humphrey on this blog as well as on a number of other public websites. As a citizen of the United States of America, one of our most fundamental rights is our right to vote officials in and out of office. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution gives us our right to publicly voice our opinions of political candidates… that is unless you criticize the wrong elected official in Dearborn County, Indiana.
Dearborn County Prosecutor F. Aaron Negangard may be the first public official since before civil rights reformation to use a criminal prosecution to limit political speech regarding elected officials. Prosecutor Negangard is charging me with communicating a threat to Judge Humphrey in retaliation for Judge Humphrey’s adverse ruling in my case. First of all I can assure everyone that I never threatened an illegal act in retaliation for Judge Humphrey’s ruling. I have written extensively about the ruling. Why? Because we live in a democracy.
Prosecutor Negangard tries to trivialize my reasoning for writing about Judge Humphrey. Negangard wants people to believe that my criminal prosecution is justified because I criticized Judge Humphrey too much. Humphrey and Negangard were on the Republican ticket together last November. I spoke out against the Republican Candidate for Dearborn Circuit Court Judge, James D. Humphrey. Now Prosecutor Negangard is prosecuting me because I criticized his fellow party member too much and/or too often. What if the local Fox affiliated news station in Cincinnati wrote about my story? What if Channel 19’s Tricia Macke would have criticized Judge Humphrey for terminating my parenting time? Would Prosecutor Negangard bring charges against Tricia Macke and Fox 19? What if a judicial watchdog website would have criticized Humphrey? What if a Dearborn County voter spoke out “too” much against Negangard’s friend? What is most terrifying about these questions is that Dearborn County Prosecutor F. Aaron Negangard can, and will abuse his power as a county prosecutor to squash any potential political obstacle at his own discretion.
Dearborn County Prosecutor F. Aaron Negangard is going to do his best to demonstrate that a large quantity of my legal actions somehow, equal an illegal action. Prosecutor Negangard is setting a precedent that he will prosecute someone for speaking out against a political ally if Negangard determines that the criticism is too redundant or harsh.
So what is the lesson that Dearborn County residents should take from this blog? If Negangard successfully prosecutes me for political free speech, you probably should not criticize the candidate for county dog catcher because Negangard will prosecute you if the candidate is a friend of the Prosecutor. Negangard will tell you that I’m wrong. He’ll tell you that I just attacked Humphrey because Judge Humphrey ruled against me. The fact is, Dearborn County Prosecutor F. Aaron Negangard will say and do anything to protect a political ally. So I welcome all to attend my trial to see my lawyers and me fight to keep Dearborn County Prosecutor F. Aaron Negangard from trampling on democracy and First Amendment speech
Next court date: Pretrial hearing at 11am in the Dearborn county Courthouse, Wednesday, May 11th. Any comments, suggestions, or concerns can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.