IS SCIOTO COUNTY COMMON PLEAS COURT JUDGE HOWARD HARCHA III RUNNING A FAIR COURT? SOME SAY NO! I AGREE!
May 29, 2007
John Welton (Doug Deepe) Sentinel Reporter
Over the last year there have been some mysterious decisions and hearings being rendered in the courtroom of Scioto County Common Pleas Court Judge Howard Harcha III. We have learned that the 4th District Court of Appeals has stated that trial court transcripts of the case of murderer John Martin Adams has been doctored and/or altered, Judge Harcha III dismisses a policeman’s lawsuit who is being represented by the same attorney in the Adams case, and finally Judge Harcha III banned a local citizen from audio or video taping the hearing for the residents of Grandview Avenue to ensure the public could be fully informed of the court hearing. Does this sound more like Nazi Germany in the 1940’s than what our forefathers set up for an open judicial system for the people?
I wrote a story over the weekend about the 4th District Court of Appeals issuing an order to Judge Harcha III demanding that he hold an evidentiary hearing to find out why four different trial court transcripts have been sent to the Court of Appeal in the Adams murder trial. Why would Judge Harcha III allow not 1, nor 2, nor 3, but 4 different trial transcripts to go up to the Appeals Court by an employee of his?
Maybe Judge Harcha III’s decision in the Grandview case sheds a little light on this matter. Judge Harcha III ordered Teresa Mollette to not take a tape recorder and/or video recorder into his courtroom for the Grandview Street residents hearing against the City of Portsmouth a few months ago. Mollette filed a paper with Judge Harcha III asking permission to video and audio record the hearing. Her request was not just denied but Mollette had her equipment seized by the judge until after the hearing was completed. Click on the following link to read the posting Mollette put up on her website concerning her attempt to record the Grandview hearing:
The reporters from other media sources were allowed to take their equipment into the courtroom. In other words, Judge Howard Harcha III allowed the SOGP gangster reporters to bring their equipment into the courtroom, but denied Mollette who owns a website that publishes public information for free for her readers the right to capture the hearing with her equipment.
I now believe that maybe Judge Harcha III didn’t want Teresa Mollette to video or audio the hearing because he wouldn’t be allowed to alter the hearings transcript if he knew that Mollette would publish the hearing on her website. Judge Harcha III knows the local press never prints negative activity by local judges so he doesn’t mind having them in the courtroom with their equipment. Do you smell something funny hear people?Now we just learned this weekend that Judge Harcha III dismissed a case filed by Portsmouth Police Officer Steven Nagel against the City of Portsmouth and Portsmouth Police Chief Charles Horner. Officer Nagel complained that he was forced to provide information to Chief Charles Horner about Nagel’s association with former New Boston Police Officer Matt Powell and when Nagel refused to do so, Chief Horner retaliated against him and eventually fired him from his job. An arbitration hearing was held and the administrative officer ordered Nagel back to work but Chief Horner and Mayor Kalb has refused to put Nagel back to work.
Judge Harcha III gave a summary judgment for Chief Horner and the City of Portsmouth claiming no material fact was left in the case for a jury to be impaneled to hear testimony. This order disputes a prior decision by Judge Harcha III in which he stated material facts did exist and the case would go to trial. The attorney for Officer Nagel is Jim Banks from Dublin, Ohio. Attorney Banks is also the attorney for John Adams.
Is it coincidental clients of Attorney Banks are being thrown out of court now? Attorney Banks was fortunate to have a client like John Adams who had the financial resources to fight Judge Harcha III at the Court of Appeals. This forced the hand of Judge Harcha III and his immoral scheme to allow altered transcripts to go up against an individual seeking justice at the Court of Appeals. While I’m not saying Adams did or didn’t commit murder, he deserves to have his case heard fairly at the Court of Appeals.
How many other false transcripts have been submitted by Judge Harcha III’s court reporters to Courts of Appeal? How many men or women are aware that their court appointed lawyer may have not had the funds to fight like Attorney Banks has done to prove false information may have kept them in prison?
This activity by Judge Howard Harcha III appears to take us back to the 1940’s when altered information was used by Nazi Germany to slaughter innocent people using the courts to do the dirty work. What has been uncovered by Attorney Banks against this sitting judge is not just illegal, it is immoral!
Maybe if enough pressure is put on justices at the Court of Appeals a full investigation will occur on Judge Howard Harcha III and we can find out how long this illegal action has been going on.
We at the Sentinel sat in the courtroom of Judge Harcha III in 2003 when Attorney Mike Mearan stood up and stated that “he knew the deal that had been worked out for his client (rapist John Michael Schmidt) couldn’t be followed through with because of the public disclosure of the deal by certain websites.” It seems that Judge Harcha III learned to shut down website owners after we revealed his dirty deal back in 2003. Why else would a judge shut down the public from hearing what he says from the bench of his courtroom?
Finally, Judge Howard Harcha III was the Portsmouth Municipal Court Judge that illegally expunged the criminal record of now Scioto County Sheriff Marty Donini. Judge Harcha III was fully aware that he illegally expunged two criminal records for Donini to make him eligible to run for Scioto County Sheriff. It was then Judge Harcha III that signed the illegal affidavit for Donini claiming that Donini had no criminal record that would prevent him from running for the office of Scioto County Sheriff.
These revelations should scare the people of Scioto County and make them reconsider putting Judge Harcha III back on the bench when his term expires. Judge Harcha III’s record proves he will cover up crimes and now maybe he is party to committing the crime of submitting false information to a higher court. Do you or your loved ones think you will get a fair hearing with this judge? You better think again.
John Welton (Doug Deepe)