David Sole of MECAWI and Rev. Edward Pinkney of BANCO talk at the minister's home in Benton Harbor after the sentencing on May 14. Pinkney was given five years probation in a politically-motivated frame-up. (Photo: Abayomi Azikiwe).
Originally uploaded by Pan-African News Wire File Photos
Dec.-21-07 Update on Rev. Pinkney:
Rev. Pinkney went before Judge Butzbaugh in Benton Harbor yesterday. The judge dropped trying to claim that Rev. Pinkney violated his probation by writing an article calling the judge corrupt and a KKKer.
But the judge then ruled that those same words constituted a "threat to the judge and his family" and SENTENCED REV. PINKNEY TO ONE YEAR IN PRISON! Rev. Pinkney was then taken to jail to start serving the year. This will be appealed. If you haven't already, please contact Governor Granholm to demand that Constitutional rights be restored in Berrien County and that Rev. Pinkney be set free.
DONATIONS ARE DESPERATELY NEEDED - send checks to:
BANCO, 1940 Union
Street, Benton Harbor, MI 49022.
Here are some January activities:
1. Sat. Jan. 5 - MECAWI meeting to fight for a Moratorium on
Foreclosures, Evictions and Utility Shut-offs. Check http://www.mecawi.org for time and location.
2. Friday, Jan. 11 - 7 PM - City Council hearing on the foreclosure crisis. 13th floor of Coleman A. Young Municipal Center. You must go through metal detectors to enter building.
3. Monday - Jan. 21 - Noon - ML King Day Rally and March. Central United Methodist Church (Woodward at Adams in Detroit). Indoor rally followed by march through Detroit and return to church for additional presentations, refreshments, etc.
4. Tuesday, Jan. 29 - Protest in Lansing at the State Capitol to demand the Governor declare a state of emergency and moratorium on foreclosures, evictions and utility shut-offs at the Governor's State of the State address. Check http://www.mecawi.org for time.
-- David Sole
This actually happened yesterday in Berrien County Courthouse
[This is exactly why Rev. Edward Pinkney has been a daily court observer for approximately 6 years, and why he's now in jail. Oversight organizations like state gov., the ACLU, the NAACP, the Dept. of Justice, etc. know about this courthouse and do nothing. The media knows also. Organizations and media are just people. People who are busy looking the other way as lives and families are ruined.]
It happened yesterday, Wed. Dec. 19, 07. There were only 2 witnesses in court, Belinda Brown and Dorothy Pinkney, who were waiting for Rev. Pinkney's hearing which was eventually postponed until later today.
Judge Butzbaugh was on the bench as a young black woman (20's) was pleading guilty. Remember that Berrien County judges are accustomed to meting out their brand of justice without anyone watching.
After pleading guilty, the young woman asked if she could say something else. The judge said "yes." (Remember, he had witnesses.) She cried as she began to explain that the court appointed atty. told her that if she pled guilty she could go home and be with her children. But, she said she wasn't guilty, that she was the one who was assaulted.
The atty. began explaining to the judge that he had already discussed all this with her. Then, something totally unexpected happened: Judge Butzbaugh displayed anger and walked right out of the courtroom without adjourning. At this point, the 2 witnesses left the courtroom and decided his anger was motivated by their presence.
This courthouse has the highest rate of innocent convictions in Michigan - Mrs. Pinkney and Mrs. Brown only observed one example. Judges here are known to say, "I know you're innocent, and I'm putting you away." It's also common knowledge that cops are always around town stirring things up, accusing people of things, parking in places where people can be harrassed, making false arrests, and much worse.
Larry Pinkney (no relation to Edward) and David Love will appear on Make It Plain with Mark Thompson on Sirius Radio - Left Channel 146 today (December 20, 2007) at 7pm Eastern Time. They will be discussing the Rev. Pinkney case.