Candor NC fires the police Dept.
So here we are almost two years later and the ORIGINAL non charge that became a charge is on trial.
Jury hears Lamonds testimony, set to begin deliberations
By Mary Anderson
CARTHAGE — A Moore County jury will begin deliberations on Friday to decide the guilt or innocence of Teresa Lamonds of Candor on two counts of communicating threats and one count of resisting an officer. All three charges are misdemeanors and were made after a series of events on May 6, 2009.
Lamonds said in testimony on Thursday that the charges are a conspiracy fabricated by Candor police officers Grantland Jackson and James Pierce, Candor Town Clerk Tammy Kellis and John Thompson, retired town employee. Their reason, she said, was to protect Officer Pierce and “to make me out to be a bad person who thinks she is above the law and better than anyone else.”
Lamonds contends that Sgt. Pierce went to her office, accused her of threatening Jackson, accused her of assault on a officer when she touched him and then beat her up.
The case is being heard in Moore Superior Court because Lamonds appealed to superior court after being found guilty in Montgomery district court in October 2009 and requested a change of venue because of pre-trial publicity. The first trial was not allowed to be mentioned in this trial. However, Prosecutor Darren Allen used transcripts of what he identified as “sworn testimony in previous court proceeding” to point out contradictions to testimony in this trial.
Lamonds’ attorney, James Van Camp, and Allen, assistant district attorney, made their closing arguments to the jury late Thursday afternoon.
During earlier testimony on Thursday, Lamonds recounted again the morning traffic stop by Jackson, for which she received a warning ticket for speeding, and the traffic stop of her husband, Johnny Lamonds, to whom Jackson gave a warning ticket for following his police vehicle too closely, a charge that Johnny Lamonds denied.
Teresa Lamonds said she went to town hall where she asked Kellis to have Police Chief Randall White or Mayor Becky Williams call her before the end of the day. She denies a threat to Jackson to “beat his skinny ass in the middle of the street,” but admits that she said, “If he talks to everyone else the way he talked to me, somebody is going to beat his skinny ass and it might be me.”
Lamonds said she drove back to where Jackson had her husband stopped and called to him that she “had raised a little hell at town hall” and she was “tired of this shit with the police department.”
Lamonds testified that she had been frustrated with Candor police because of numerous parking tickets given to J L Hosiery employees and to tenants who live in apartments over the business. Johnny Lamonds testified he believed the police were not targeting his business, but Hispanic employees and tenants. The police chief tore up the tickets when Lamonds complained.
Also, Teresa’s vehicle was broken into. Biscoe police arrested a woman who used Lamonds’ credit card at Walmart, but no one was arrested for the break-in.
A third source of friction with police was a man who printed fraudulent checks on J L Hosiery and cashed them at three banks. The man was identified but never charged.
On May 6, 2009, about 2:30 p.m., Sgt. Pierce, whose duty was to respond to citizen complaints, walked over to the Lamonds’ textile mill, J L Hosiery. He was taken to Teresa Lamonds’ office where he asked her to come to the police department and file a formal complaint. The conversation was polite at first, she said, and he left, then came back in and shut the door.
Lamonds said she touched him with her finger and told him to leave her office, that he was trespassing. Pierce testified that she had repeated her threat against officer Jackson and shoved him.
She said Pierce twisted her arm behind her back, threw her on the floor with his knee in her back, jerked her up by the hair, threw her into the wall and back on the floor. While he was trying to reach a telephone, she escaped and ran through the plant screaming.
Pierce said the hold was a “come along” technique to make a person go with an officer, did involve a certain level of pain, and that in the struggle, both of them fell to the floor. He also said he was trying to call for backup when she got away and ran out screaming.
Johnny Lamonds, who was in the business car shop, testified he had no idea what had happened when his wife ran in screaming that the police had beat her up. He ran to the office. An employee told him that a police car was driving into the back parking lot.
Johnny Lamonds said he was walking fast toward the officers, which Jackson must have thought was threatening because he drew back to strike Lamonds, but Pierce stopped him.
Teresa was then handcuffed and put into the police car to be taken to the magistrate’s office. Johnny called their local attorney to meet them there.
Before they went to the courthouse in Troy, Teresa testified, they stopped at town hall. Jackson and Pierce went inside where Teresa could see them talking with Kellis and Thompson. That, Teresa said, is when they fabricated their story about her.
Teresa said she had told the officers she was in pain and needed medical attention, but was ignored. She was charged and released by the magistrate and immediately taken by her husband to the emergency room at Moore Regional Hospital in Pinehurst.
A J L Hosiery employee who was in the shop with Johnny testified that when Teresa ran in, she was crying and shaking, her arms were red, her glasses were gone and her watch was dangling on her arm.
Johnny Lamonds said he had never seen his wife in a state such as that.
At the emergency room, her right arm was put in a “soft cast” and she was referred to the orthopaedic clinic. After six weeks of physical therapy didn’t help, she had surgery to repair tendons and ligaments. Teresa was a patient at a pain clinic for a back problem and continued there for her arm and hand pain.
Defense attorney Van Camp showed the jury seven photographs, taken at the pain clinic, of bruises on her arm, wrist, hand and upper chest. Prosecutor Allen said some of the pictures had shadows identified as bruises that were not present in other pictures.
Teresa was also diagnosed with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) after the trauma and, at one point, alarmed her family and her therapist when she said she wanted to kill James Pierce and then kill herself.
Johnny Lamonds said not now, but at the beginning, he was worried that his wife would harm herself.
“This has affected Teresa really, really bad,” Lamonds said.
So to save you the suspense today, Friday 19 July, Teresa Lamonds was found guilty on all charges.
She had bee offered a plea but refused because it involved community service. She would not agree to that.
Once found guilty by the jury she was sentenced to probation, and the Judge doubled the amount of community service that she would have had under the plea.
Once again adding to the list of convictions started by a warning for speeding.
Mr. Wayne Holyfield former NCSHP patrolman, and town councilman of Candor, had his trial moved to Moore Co. NC He is facing state charges of Accessing a Government Computer,
Erik Jackson roommate of Wayne Holyfield who got cough up in the election of Holyfield was convicted on federal charges of election fraud.
Wayne Holyfield's Grandmother gets arrested for calling in a bomb threat to the business of Teresa Lamonds. She plead, and the Judge told her not to call in any more bomb threats and sent her on her way.
Oh, the Candor Peach Festival is coming up soon everyone should be sure to attend and ask the residents if they are going to vote in the next election.
I love this story. The world if slam full of stupid.
LOL, I love this story. Thanks for the follow up and I'm glad it had a happy ending!
The End ?
From the link.
Superior Court Judge James Webb sentenced Lamonds to 45 days, suspended to 18 months unsupervised probation and 48 hours of community service to be completed within 75 days. Webb said Lamonds could perform the community service in Montgomery County if she chose.The sentence was the same for both charges of communicating threats and will be served concurrently. She was also ordered to pay court costs and a $1,000 fine.
The plea agreement offered before the trial began was for 12 months unsupervised probation and 24 hours of community service if Lamonds would take responsibility on the communicating threats charge. At that time, she was willing to admit responsibility, but would not agree to perform community service.
This trial was the culmination of four years of upheaval in the Town of Candor that started on May 6, 2009, when officer Grantland Jackson gave Teresa Lamonds a warning ticket for speeding 49 mph in 35 mph zone and giving her husband, Johnny Lamonds, a warning ticket for following his patrol car too closely.
Lamonds contended that Jackson was rude and disrespectful. She went to town hall to make a complaint and was told the mayor or police chief would contact her. That is where she allegedly made the first threat against Jackson.
Sgt. James Pierce, who was assigned to respond to citizen complaints, went to J L Hosiery that afternoon where he and Teresa Lamonds got into a verbal argument and she allegedly made the second threat against Jackson. Pierce said Lamonds shoved him and he attempted to arrest her for assault on a officer. After a physical confrontation, Lamonds was shortly taken to the magistrate’s office where she was charged with two counts of communicating threats, resist/obstruct/delay an officer, assault on an officer and disorderly conduct.
The latter two charges were dropped at Lamonds first trial in Montgomery County District Court on Oct. 13, 2009. Lamonds was found guilty of the other three charges and immediately appealed to Superior Court. On Aug. 29, 2012, a change of venue request was granted on grounds of pre-trial publicity.
The drama continued in Candor with the 2011 municipal election.
In that election, two Candor commissioners were unseated by Wayne Holyfield, who was an N.C. Highway Patrol trooper, and Rob Martin, an N.C. Department of Correction officer. Holyfield and Martin were sworn in on Dec. 12, 2011, and, backed by sitting commissioner Tim Privett, immediately fired four of the town’s police officers, including Jackson and Pierce.
The citizens of Candor were outraged and converged on town hall, demanding answers from first-term Mayor Richard Britt and the board. Several public meetings followed and citizens offered documentation alleging that the Lamonds had backed Holyfield’s and Martin’s campaigns for the purpose of firing the officers.
In January 2012, Holyfield was placed on administrative duty by the highway patrol, citing an internal investigation. In April, he was charged with unlawfully accessing a government computer. He was discharged from the highway patrol in May and resigned from the Board of Commissioners. Holyfield’s charges have no bearing on the Town of Candor and he chose to resign.
A former commissioner, Tim Smith, was appointed to complete Holyfield’s term.
A few months later, the officers were offered their positions back. Jackson, who had joined the City of Hamlet police force, declined.
The other three came back to work, saving the town thousands of dollars in unemployment benefits and ended legal action against the town for their dismissal.
Citizens also alleged violations of election laws in the 2011 election.
After an investigation by the Board of Elections, Erik Ray Jackson, a former highway patrol trooper, was charged with fraudulent voter registration and fraudulent voting in the 2011 election. Jackson is alleged to have used Holyfield’s address to register to vote in Candor, but actually lived in Lexington.
Holyfield has also been granted a change of venue and his trial will be held in Moore County at a later date.
The only ruling pending to bring the legal actions to a close in Candor is an appeal by Teresa Lamonds to the U.S. Middle District Court on a summary judgment issued by U.S. District Judge Catherine Eagles in favor of officer James Pierce in February 2013.
Teresa Lamonds had filed the charge against Pierce alleging excessive force during an arrest and malicious prosecution. Judge Eagles wrote in the judgment that Lamonds “has presented no evidence that any excessive force was closely related to municipal policy and because Sgt. Pierce had probable cause to charge her.”
This should be the end. It should all be over.
One person upends a whole town over a warning ticket. (with no small amount of help from voter apathy)
Yes this should be the last anyone hears of this. The town of Candor hope so. But somehow I dont think the central person in this little drama will be able to let it go.