Rob Gowan, Owen Sound Sun Times, reported [www.wiartonecho.com/news/local-news/gammie-acquitted-of-assault-charge/wcm/3d9e8881-2c41-4464-9005-1806090ba01c ] on my acquittal and on Justice Morneau’s judgement. My comments on the Gowan article follow.
In her eight-page judgment, Morneau states that she cannot say that any witnesses were untruthful. (source: Rob Gowan, Echo October 4, 2018)
Out of context this is misleading. Judge Morneau (morneau judgement October 4 2018) pointed out that Jackson failed to tell the truth at least sometimes. Her words were “Ms. Jackson was perhaps more sure of herself, yet the evidence demonstrated that some of that assurance was misplaced.” I read that as a euphemism for “the physical evidence demonstrates that Jackson lied at least sometimes”. Justice Morneau even included transcript of Elizabeth Barefoot catching Jackson in the “stop that’s assault” lie.
The judgment goes on to state that “Mr. Gammie most likely did push Mr.Kirkland from behind. Mr. Gammie clearly did not disagree at the time with Mr. Kirkland’s remarks about being pushed.” (Echo)
Justice Morneau I think was saying that I did not disagree at the time with Mr. Kirkland’s remarks about being pushed, therefore I most likely did push Mr. Kirkland from behind.
Justice Morneau was relying on a notion that my silence when accused by Kirkland is evidence of guilt. But her conclusion does not follow from the premise, and the conclusion is preposterous.
My lawyer Elizabeth Barefoot capably demonstrated, with reference to several other cases, that the doctrine of acceptance by silence very clearly does not apply here. For balance Mr. Gowan should have reported that too.
He [Kirkland] suffered no injuries. (Echo)
But Jackson testified that Kirkland hurt his chin. That should have been reported too.
Evidence presented in court included video from a surveillance camera. While it wasn’t in position to show what happened, it does show Jackson stepping back as if she had just seen something startling. (Echo)
“As if she had just seen something startling” is Gowan conjecture, not fact. I believe Jackson stepped back because Kirkland had the door almost closed and there was no need for her to continue to be in there pushing on Kirkland’s back and helping Kirkland to physically block me from getting my report.
I am told that reporter Rob Gowan was not in court when the video was played. So how would he know what Jackson’s stepping back appeared to be?
During the trial, Kirkland testified that Gammie pushed him twice from behind quite heavily, slamming his face into the door or door frame. (Echo)
Kirkland testified to no such thing.
Contrary to Gowan’s account, Kirkland testified that he did not see who pushed him, and that he did not know who pushed him, and that it could have been Janice Jackson who pushed him. Kirkland never testified that I hit or pushed him. In court Kirkland always used the passive voice, never the active voice. Instead of saying “Gammie pushed me” Kirkland testified “I was pushed”. Instead of saying “Gammie slammed me from behind” Kirkland testified “I got slammed from behind”. The evidence is compelling that I was never behind Kirkland. If I had been behind Kirkland when he closed the door I would have been on the security camera. But I was not. But Jackson was on the security video. Right behind Kirkland.
Reporter Gowan was not present during Kirkland’s testimony. The story was rushed out without Gowan’s claims being checked.
There are no grounds for Justice Morneau to say: “Mr. Gammie most likely did push Mr. Kirkland from behind”. The evidence would support a statement: “It is more likely than not that Gammie did not push Kirkland from behind”.
Kirkland, who was not in court on Thursday, said he was shocked by the acquittal. “I haven’t really had time to think about it too much, but I can’t believe it,” said Kirkland. “Why would I put myself through that if he didn’t do it?” (Echo October 4)
Yes Mr. Kirkland why would you make false allegations and put us all through that? Surely you knew from your past that you had little chance of getting away with your false allegation.
Kirkland took the witness stand in grubby shorts and sandals. He made a joke on the stand. He did not seem to care if he was seen as credible or not. He did not seem to care if I was convicted or not. At times it seemed that he did not want the judge to believe that I slammed him or hit him or pushed him. I do not think Kirkland ever really expected that I would be convicted. Under oath he declined to say that I hit or pushed him. He was being careful not to perjure himself. If I had been convicted and gone to jail instead of the acquittal Kirkland would have had trouble sleeping at night. I believe he is pleased with the outcome. Because that puts less of a burden on his guilty conscience. But he has to pretend that he is disappointed.
Why does anyone make a false allegation? Not to right a wrong. People make false allegations for improper purposes and because they think they can get away with it. Kirkland’s purpose was to get me off council and away from town hall. He and Jackson achieved their sinister purpose. They got me off council with their false allegations. Kirkland got away with his false accusations. So far anyway.
“Why would I put myself through that rigmarole if it didn’t happen,” said Kirkland. “He even had me on his own tape that he recorded telling him not to do that to my back from behind again. (Echo October 4)
Kirkland testified that he did not know who pushed him and that it could have been Jackson. But in an unsworn statement a year earlier Kirkland accused me of pushing him and hitting him. He should try sticking to the truth.
“Why would I turn around if somebody didn’t slam me from behind, and tell them that?” (Echo October 4)
Note the passive voice again (“if somebody ….”). In the heat of the moment he obviously made an assumption that I had pushed him. But that was before he saw the video tape. When he saw the video tape he realized that Jackson was the one behind him and that it was Jackson who pushed him. By his own sworn admission he did not see who pushed him or slammed him and he did not know who pushed or slammed him.
“It was the Crown that charged him, not me,” said Kirkland, who said he went to police, asked if they thought it was a case, and they told him that Gammie couldn’t do to him what he was alleged to have done. (Echo)
But Kirkland was not truthful to the police. If Kirkland had been as truthful to the police as he was in testifying that “I did not see who pushed me. I do not know who pushed me. It could have been Janice” there would never have been a charge.
Kirkland said he plans to move on from the trial. (Echo)
If Kirkland has any semblance of decency he will take a long hard look at what he has done, and he will make amends before “moving on”. You are not absolved, Mr. Kirkland.
Jackson said the recording was edited, which Gammie admitted to. (Echo)
The entered audio file included everything from the second the “record” button was pressed to the second the “stop” button was pressed. The recording was not edited. The full unedited unaltered audio file was entered as evidence. Judge Morneau insisted that the whole file be entered. The audio file was not challenged by the crown. Judge Morneau accepted it as evidence, saying (her paragraph 35) “I conclude that this recording is accurate and reliable”. The claim that it was edited is just another Jackson lie. No surprise there. (Is anything Jackson says true?) I made short audio excerpts for convenience. But they were not “edits”.
Contrary to Mr. Gowan I did not admit to editing the recording or any recording. That I admitted to editing is a reporter Gowan lie. It appears that Gowan has learned much from Jackson.
“A lot of the very damning statements that Mr. Gammie made were interestingly removed,” said Jackson. “That was unfortunate.” (Echo October 4)
There were no statements removed, damning or otherwise. This is another Jackson lie (no surprise), easily disproved (no surprise). It is no wonder Judge Morneau said (at paragraph 30) “Ms. Jackson was perhaps more sure of herself, yet the evidence demonstrated the some of that assurance was misplaced”, and (at paragraph 42) ““The difficulty with Ms. Jackson’s evidence is that she was so clear that she did not say the phrase “I love it” and characterized that assertion as a lie. That was not a lie and her confidence in her position causes me to be very cautious with the use of her evidence as her memory is not reliable on some details and there is a history between her and Mr. Gammie.”
The complete unaltered audio file caught Jackson in at least two lies. The video file caught Jackson in the big lie. That’s what “was unfortunate” (for Jackson).
Jackson said the evidence speaks for itself, including the video, audio and her and Kirkland’s testimony. (Echo)
What a stupid statement. The evidence said Janice was right behind Kirkland at the time of the alleged push. The evidence said that I was not behind Kirkland at the time of the alleged push. The evidence said I did not do what Jackson swore under oath that I did. The evidence did speak for itself, just not in the way Jackson that implied it did.
If Judge Morneau got it as wrong as Jackson implied, then the crown would be duty bound to appeal. Don’t hold your breath Ms. Jackson.
Both Jackson and Kirkland expressed surprise that a town employee who witnessed the events wasn’t called to testify. (Echo)
The employee they are talking about is Hailey Mossley. Ms. Mossley claimed in a report that “[Craig] shoved Jay from behind – hand to Jay’s shoulder”. Jackson claimed that Mossley was an “eye-witness” to the events. Defence lawyer Elizabeth Barefoot established from the video and a bit of geometry that Ms. Mossley could not have witnessed what she claimed she did. The crown did not call Hailey Mossley because Elizabeth Barefoot’s cross-examination of Mossley’s testimony would have killed the already barely breathing crown case.
“There was a third eyewitness and the Crown chose not to call that witness,” said Jackson. “When I asked why he didn’t call the witness he said the case was as good as it could get.” (Echo)
The crown did not have to justify his decision to Jackson. I doubt that he said what Jackson claims he said. I expect that the crown lawyer told Jackson that Mossley’s testimony could not help and was likely to hurt his case.
Jackson is trying to suggest by innuendo that it’s the Crown lawyer’s fault that I didn’t get convicted, because he did not call Ms. Mossley. Jackson’s suggestion is ridiculous. Crown lawyer Glenn Brotherston did the best he could with what he had. What he had was three lying witnesses. He was wise not to call Mossley.
“The thing that saddens me is the judge seems to be sending a message that this kind of behaviour in a municipal office is OK,” said Jackson, who had not yet read the judgment. “You can’t just slam somebody into a steel door and that is OK.” (Echo)
How can Jackson possibly know what message Justice Morneau was sending if Jackson has not read Justice Morneau’s judgment? Does she read minds?
Judge Morneau did not say or seem to say or imply anything of the kind. Jackson’s statement is seriously offensive to Justice Morneau and to the whole justice system.
If the crown had proved that I intentionally slammed Kirkland into a steel door then Judge Morneau would have convicted me. But the crown did not prove that. The crown could not even come up with any reliable evidence of that.
Jackson seems to think that I should have been found guilty by allegation, like I and others have been found guilty by allegation so many times in Jackson’s infamous kangaroo courts. News flash 1 for Jackson – innocent until proven guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction. The only entered evidence that I slammed Kirkland was Jackson’s testimony. And that was found to be unreliable. News flash 2 for Jackson. In Canada we still have the rule of law …. not the rule-of-Jackson.
The TSBP code of conduct for council members section 5.2 indicates: “no member will maliciously or falsely injure or impugn the professional or ethical reputation of any member of staff, the public or member of Council”. Jackson breached the rule.
The code of conduct also indicates “as leaders of the community, [members of council] are held to a higher standard of behaviour”. The mayor as a public figure is held to that higher standard. The thing that saddens me is that Mayor Janice Jackson seems to be sending a message to the young and the old of TSBP that it is OK to lie and cheat and deceive in order to get rid of your political adversaries. It is not OK. It is a breach of the code of conduct and it is wrong. Nd under oath lying with intent to deceive is called perjury.