Category Archives: Law

In Retrospect, Perhaps A Bake Sale Would Have Been A Better Way To Go

auctioneerAs most folks know by now, over the past week anti-abortion and pro-crazy forces were showing off their Internetz skillz by organizing an eBay auction of items in order to fund the defense of Scott Roeder, Hit Man of the Almighty/alleged murderer of Wichita doctor George Tiller. ‘Cause although the Lord may instruct you to gun down a man during services in one of His houses of worship, you’re on your own when it comes to dealing with the aftermath.

Unfortunately, those heathens at the the online auction house disappointed those wanting to do the Lord’s bidding (cue drum & cymbal) on the various items, as eBay execs began removing the “murderabilia.” Hmm. Maybe fundraisers would have better luck with this site. I mean, come on! Who wouldn’t want any of this stuff?

Items organizers said were being donated for the auction include several drawings submitted by Roeder; an Army of God manual that describes dozens of ways to shut down abortion clinics; and a prison cookbook compiled by Shelley Shannon, who shot Tiller in 1993 and is serving time for clinic arsons and bombings.

On Sunday, however, the only items listed were a document of religious instruction written by a convicted clinic bomber and a Bible that belonged to Shannon.

“It has all the pro-life passages highlighted,” [auction organizer Dave] Leach said of the Bible.

Interesting. Perhaps bomber/attempted murderer Shannon highlighted this oldie but goodie from Exodus 20:13: “THOU SHALL NOT KILL.”  For ilk who tend to state that the Bible does not consist of a buffet of laws that we mortals get to selectively choose to obey, they sure seem to be glossing over one of the Decalogue’s Greatest Hits.

Well, now we learn that the pro-life-but-really-only-for-zygotes folks not only disregard the laws of God and eBay, but they also disdain those of our nation’s copyright system. As cartoonist Rob Tornoe notes in a piece on Daryl Cagle’s Political Cartoonists Index, among the artworks included in the auction items was a cartoon done by an associate of Roeder’s that blatantly plagiarizes an image produced by a syndicated cartoonist: Continue reading


Leave a comment

Filed under Crime, In the News, Law, Religion, Strange news, Uncategorized

Kansas City: Premier Destination For Portly, Imprisoned Baseball Fans

chubbyvisitortoaroyalsgameDon’t you just hate it when you really have your heart set on catching the Red Sox/Royals series, and then you go and get busted for “interference with official acts and violation of a protective order”? Yeah, us too! I mean, here you are looking forward to seeing a mediocre baseball team play a team with the most insufferable fans in the game (“Sully! We drove wicked fah to see the Sawx in this town with bah-becue!”), and then an arrest comes your way. Sigh; life is unfair. Oh, unless you happen to be imprisoned in Keosaqua, Iowa, in which case: have fun at the game!

An Iowa man serving a 10-day jail sentence walked out of jail on Wednesday to attend a baseball game in Kansas City with his family…

Barker will attend the Red Sox game in Kansas City with his father and brother. Barker’s father, Norman, said Wednesday that the family had been planning the trip for 3 months and they haven’t been able to attend a game in 25 years.

Waggoner said Barker’s request was approved “as a special consideration for the family.”

Um. Hadn’t been able to attend a game in 25 years? Perhaps you could have done so had you avoided every Dunkin’ Donuts outlet you passed in that time, sir. And what’s with the general subversion of justice here? Wayne Knight Mr. Barker was convicted of a crime (harassing a local family by calling as many as 60 times a night) — and thus forfeited his right to attend any and all sporting events during the period of his sentence. Nah, nothing about this adds up at all. Glad you chose our city, though.

Photo via KMBC.

Leave a comment

Filed under Crime, Law, Royals, Sports

Star Gets Weekly Letter From Constitutionally Illiterate Conservative

settingupanorganicconstitutionSheesh. This is getting to be a near-weekly occurrence: some metro area supporter of John Sidney McCain III, fed up with the government takeover orchestrated by that socialist Kenyan, pens a poorly reasoned and logically unsound letter to the editor of the Star, which dutifully prints the letter in the name of open debate. The only problem? The people firing off these missives do little more than reveal just a stunning lack of understanding about — well, about pretty much everything. This week the batter is Joe Neuner of Olathe, who probably needs to study how Con Law actually works.

Practically everything Obama has proposed or done thus far in his term as president could be challenged in a court of law as unconstitutional. This appears quite unseemly for a person who gratuitously describes himself as a constitutional lawyer.

For example, where in the Constitution does it allow a president to require anyone to purchase health insurance? Where does it allow him to take over publicly owned companies such as General Motors or Chrysler? Where is his authority to fire the CEO of GM? Where is his authority to appoint more than 30 “czars” who are accountable to no one but him? It goes on ad nauseam.

The folks marching on Washington were right. We need to rid ourselves of all of the watchdogs in Congress. Not one of them has made a peep. Throw all of the bums out. Getting rid of some of the media is not a bad idea, either.

Bravo, Joe! Your scholarship is obviously important to you. Unfortunately, it’s also almost totally wrong. MORE

1 Comment

Filed under Education, Law, Media, Politics

Looking To Get A Lighter Sentence In Leavenworth? Hey, Just Be Friends With The Mayor!

leavenworthmayorshaybaker“Operation Stonewalled”: no, it’s not just a joke about gay rights or famous generals. Turns out it was the name of a huge drug bust up in ol’ Leavenworth, that haven of crime and mullets north of town. Among those arrested was a gentleman named Billy Trinkle — what is he, a country singer from 1940s Mississippi? — who just got two dimes in the case. But Trinkle has friends in semi-high places: the mayor of Leavenworth, the oddly named Shay Baker, wrote a letter in his defense requesting leniency. Huh? And what’s with this picture? Do mayors of Leavenworth have to go to Glamour Shots for their official portraits?

“I am writing this letter not because I believe Billy is innocent of the crimes he has been convicted of, or because I believe Billy should not be punished for those crimes. I am writing because I believe that Billy should receive a reasonable sentence and some consideration that, in my opinion, Billy can become a contributing and positive citizen after he serves his time,” Baker said.

Power to the people! Who cares if the guy purchased cocaine? He’s a friend of the mayor! Isn’t that enough to knock five years off his sentence? Come on, judge: Billy Trinkle IS the war on drugs! Don’t you trust this face?


It’s a no-brainer, Your Honor.


Filed under City Government, Crime, Law, Politics

Raymore Felicide Leads To Odd Questions, Awkward Family Poses

thefamilyoftobeythelatecatSome uncomfortable news out of Raymore this morning, as the Star details in the scandalous story o’ the day. Seems there’s been a bit of police brutality — directed at a 19-year-old housecat — and the incident is leading to all sorts of discomfiting questions, like “What is this ‘Raymore’ of which you speak?” I guess it’s someplace south of town, or something. Maybe north. No idea, really. What we do know is that it was the site of a gangland, execution-style killing that pretty much ruined the Labor Day of Kelly Wesner (pictured above, gazing into the heavens at sunset) and her daughter — no, really — Hayley Schmuck. From the paper of record’s account:

Somehow, Tobey had gotten out of the house Monday and wandered down the street and into a neighbor’s garage, said Wesner, who owned the cat for 18 years.

An adult at that house sprayed Tobey with a garden hose to get him to leave, according to city reports on the incident.

Officers captured Tobey with a “catch pole.” A supervisor told the officer to take Tobey, who wore no tag, to a remote area and “put him down,” a police report said…

A police officer would take Tobey into a field and shoot him twice in the head. He then put the body in a plastic grocery bag and disposed of it in a city trash bin.

Um. Excuse me? Is this how we deal with rabid cats these days? With Sopranos-style hits carried out in empty fields? When did Uncle Junior start running the Raymore PD? Anyway, as you can imagine, the clan in question was not pleased when it received news of the happenings. And does this sound like a threatening cat?

Tobey wasn’t vicious, Wesner said. He was declawed, deaf, weighed only 6 pounds and had his own prescription drug card at Walgreens.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: cats can have prescription drug cards? Apparently, yes. Further complicating the tale is the fact that the body was simply thrown away instead of being examined or tested. So, Raymore PD: what are you hiding, sirs? Perhaps you’re running some illicit drug-smuggling ring using cats, and Tobey learned a little too much? Your city, wherever it is, demands answers!


Filed under Animals, City Government, Crime, Family Life, Law

Constitutional Debate Erupts In Totally Appropriate Venue Of Star Letters Section

theverydebatetakingplaceinthepagesofthestarWhen the framers sat down to form our founding document in 1787, surely they could not have predicted that someday, somewhere, the best legal minds in the country would gather to debate the finer points of what our guiding compact allowed and barred. And who among us would have  guessed that the debate in question would occur right here in Kansas City, and that the participants would include a high school senior, a self-anointed expert on capitalism, and a flotilla of armchair scholars? About time, too — for too long the nation’s loftiest debates have been confined to the ivory towers of Boston and the hallowed halls of D.C. Time for a struggling, deeply divided post-industrial city to weigh in on matters like these! The subject (of course): health care. The venue: the Star‘s letters section. The stakes: everything! MORE

Leave a comment

Filed under Health, Law, Media, Politics

Kansas City Dating Scene Officially Hits Rock Bottom, Fake-Arrests Self

theplaceattendedbythiskcdatingrascalIt’s long been said around these parts that KC is just a terrible place for young singles — barring the hookup-heavy primordial ooze of Power & Light, the fratty Plaza bar scene, and the hipster epicenter of Westport — but never has that maxim been on such stark display. What’s this city coming to when one can’t even impersonate a police officer to seal the deal with a woman? And after taking her on a fancy date to McDonald’s, no less!

The woman called police about midnight Tuesday saying that she was on a date with the man, but got a gut feeling that something wasn’t right. When she tried to end the date, they got into an argument and he threatened to arrest her if she didn’t go to his home, she told police.

Police responded to the McDonald’s restaurant at W. 87th Street and Mauer Road where the woman told them that she was in the early stages of a relationship with a man who was passing himself off as a police officer, said Sgt. Gary Graniewski.

Long and winding is the road of love, sir, but one hardly needs to engage in such duplicity. Might we suggest perhaps choosing a less high-profile profession next time? Just say you’re a plumber: good money, good security, and you can work in a good Shop Class as Soulcraft reference. And hey, if you’re gonna spring for fast food, at least make it Arby’s.

Leave a comment

Filed under Crime, Law, Oddities, Power & Light District, Social Life