Tuesday, March 31, 2009

What Came After ACGA - Flashback, Part II

    This post is actually being posted out of sequence. Yesterday, a friend let me use her computer to compose several entries to help me catch up on some of these issues. As a result, I am formatting four different posts for today, and I inadvertently posted the wrong post first. This entry should have preceded the other one that was posted last. So please consider this when reading this and that post's contents.


     As I detailed in my last post, the conflict that led to my actually filing a legal action against the City of Kalispell was exacerbated by a face to face confrontation with then-Chief of Police Frank Garner. When I went to the Kalispell Police Department (KPD) to request the production of records from their investigation that had been closed, Garner acted to obstruct the production of those records by re-opening the investigation, and later placed a call to Child and Family Services (CFS) to have them re-open their own investigation. Prior to this, I had verified through several sources that all official investigations had been closed in September, 2003 (September 4 for KPD and September 15 for CFS). And all of this happened on October 28. 2003).
     Following the confrontation with Garner, I consulted with a freedoms of information attorney out of Helena, MT. I confirmed with him that Montana law does not provide for a law enforcement agency to withhold records, even with an active, ongoing investigation. Therefore, Garner’s actions to obstruct the production of records by re-opening KPD’s investigation and having CFS re-open their own was yet another act of official misconduct. The attorney I consulted recommended that I file a petition with the local justice court to compel the production of the police records.
     Pursuant to such advice, I prepared a petition for production of records and attempted to file it with the Kalispell Justice Court. However, that court refused to accept jurisdiction and referred me to the district court. It was at this point that I filed the petition with the Eleventh Judicial District of Montana, In and For Flathead County. This occurred on October 30, 2003.
     Upon filing of the petition, which I filed in person, the court clerk issued to me three summons, one for each named defendant (City of Kalispell, Kalispell Police Department and Kalispell City Attorney’s Office). I made a copy of one of the summons for my records, then personally stapled an original summons to each copy of the petition to be served. [*] (now [*]) performed service that same day upon all three. Thereafter, I personally filed the proof of service signed by [*] with the court clerk.
     The filing of this petition initiated a wave of harassing letters from Richard Hickle with the City Attorney’s Office. It was also around this time that I learned that KPD officiers were contacting clientele of my business, spreading the malicious rumor that I was a child molester (it turned out that this had been going on since the initial investigation had begun in July, 2003, but I did not learn of it until early November, 2003). In an effort to bypass these harassments, I began placing calls to the City Manager (Chris Kukolski) and the Mayor (Pam Kennedy(?)). However, in spite of my best efforts to try to halt the harassments and defamations, they continued up until the point where I was forced to file an actual complaint on November 18, 2003.
     When I prepared and filed this complaint, I did so again in person. I did so with the intent of having new summonses issued by the court clerk since I had added several new defendants to the action (Pam Kennedy, Chris Kulkolski, Frank Garner, Myron Wilson, Doug Overman and Richard Hickle). However, the court clerk refused to issue new summonses for the new defendants. I argued back and forth with the clerk for several minutes on this point – the clerk I spoke with insisted that since a summons had already been issued in the cause, that there was no need for a new summons. I knew better – I knew that adding new defendants compelled the new defendants to be served with summonses, too. Yet the clerk refused to budge on this issue, and I was forced to leave without the issuance of new summonses.
     Keep in mind, at this juncture, I was still unaware of the full breadth of the corruption in Montana or how far reaching the influence was to block my claim against the City. I started this fight believing that there had been a rogue police officer (Myron Wilson), and then later believed that his department was protecting him when I pursued claims against his misconduct. Likewise, when other branches of the City began to run interference and to extend harassments my direction, again I identified it as an extension of the City covering up for the potential liability they would inherit due to the official misconduct of its police department. At this point, I was not aware that the corruption and collaborative efforts to cover it up would also come to incorporate both the county and State governments. In a nutshell, I was truly naïve to the level of corruption that existed here in Montana, and ultimately I lost my entire life to this struggle because I simply did not know that there simply was no relief available to a person standing alone against it.
     Incidentally, I initially had a volunteer of my youth program, Jeff Berna, attempt to serve KPD and its officers on the night of November 18, 2003, but Frank Garner once again obstructed the legal process. When Mr. Berna went to the police department to perform service, Garner pulled Mr. Berna into his office and threatened to have him arrested if he actually tried to serve him or anyone in his department! The gist of the threat was the implication that Mr. Berna had no lawful authority to serve anyone unless he was registered with the State as a process server. Further, Garner went on to tell Mr. Berna that he did not want to “fall” because of “Glick’s little games”.
     The applicable law, by the way, stated that anyone serving performing more than ten services of process in a calendar year had to register as a process server with the State; Mr. Berna had acted as a process server in two other instances, and his service of the KPD, Frank Garner, Myron Wilson and Doug Overmen would have brought his total services to seven. Mr. Berna was not in fact violating any law – Mr. Garner simply used his position of authority to threaten and intimidate Mr. Berna to avoid being served with legal process!
     Needless to say, Mr. Berna took Garner at his word and would not perform the legal service. Mr. Berna told me directly that he could not afford to get arrested and that if I wanted to have KPD served, I would have to find someone else. Garner subsequently placed a call to me where he tried to threaten me as well, but while on the phone I referenced the applicable law online and proved that Garner was lying about his authority. However, Garner had succeeded in blocking service for the day since I did not readily have someone else to perform service that day.
     The next day, I did find someone else to attempt service again upon the police department and the other city defendants, a client of my business, Ian Christiansen. He took up the service as a challenge and went to perform service upon the city defendants the next day, November 19, 2003. What Mr. Christiansen told me later was that he attempted to serve the KPD clerk, but that service was declined – the clerk told Mr. Christiansen that Garner had specifically instructed her not to accept service from Ron Glick. He thereafter went to perform service upon the City Attorney’s office and Richard Hickle, but the clerk there told him he would have to serve Hickle directly and he was not in the office. Mr. Christiansen then served the city itself by serving the City Recorder and tried to serve the mayor, but she was not in her office. Next, Mr. Christiansen went to Chris Kukolski’s office, and served him. Kukolski accepted the service without complaint and, according to Mr. Christiansen, was very polite about the whole issue.
     However, right after he was served, Kulkolski received a phone call while Mr. Christiansen was still in the office. As reported to me, Kukolski responded, “Yes, he is here”, followed by, “Yes, I accepted service”. The rest of the conversation was apparently little more than affirmative and negative responses, and ended by, “I’ll come over and talk to you”. Kukolski informed Mr. Christiansen that the call had been from Garner, who it seems had been calling the named defendants and trying to encourage that no one accepted service. Kukolski then told Mr. Christiansen that he was going to meet with Garner and asked him to wait out in the front lobby.
     Mr. Christiansen reported to me that he spent roughly twenty minutes in the lobby as Kukolski disappeared into the police department. As he sat there, Mr. Christiansen reported that Garner (who he did not immediately know at the time) made several trips past him and down the hall to the city attorney’s office, apparently glaring at Mr. Christiansen at each pass.
     Finally, Kukolski re-emerged from the police department with Garner at his side, and Garner, in what I am told was a very resentful tone, agreed to accept service for himself and on behalf of the police department. He also agreed to have the other defendants who had not yet been served to be available that evening for service, I believe around 8pm, if I recall correctly. When Mr. Christiansen appeared at the scheduled time, defendants Pam Kennedy, Myron Wilson and Doug Overman were there to accept service – only the City Attorney defendants remained to be served. But Mr. Christiansen would do no more, which required me to find yet another person to complete service on the City Attorney the next day, James Valentino. As I understand it, Valentino had no trouble making that service.
     Upon completion of the services, I again personally filed the proof of services with the court clerk on November 20, 2003.
     As an aside, these events happened over five years ago. My memory on some of the details may be slightly askew for this reason, but I have attempted to detail the events as accurately as I recall them. Certain things, especially the actions that I personally took, are indelibly imprinted in my mind. However, my memory may not be as clear on issues that were told to me by others. If there is a minor detail or two out of place, the rest of the details should not be discounted. The essential elements though – that three summonses were issued directly to me by the clerk of court, that service was performed upon all parties, with summons in service of the petition, and that I personally filed all three proofs of service with the court is absolutely a fact. There is no discrepancy in these details – it is only a possibility that issues and sequences of events as reported to me by others may not be entirely accurate. On this issue, I simply have no control. However, I do believe that what I was told is accurate, or I would not be detailing it herein.
     This wraps up this flashback. My next post will detail the events that began in January, 2004, and the reason for this flashback will become more relevant.
     Ciao for now!

Ron Glick
Political Prisoner since 2004

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