Scruggs Nation, February 27: the ‘Bama prosecution

Now, without even getting to what the prosecutors said, do you believe that the language of the first paragraph allows someone holding copies of the documents, with the exception of law enforcement, not to comply with the order to return them? Any way you read that language, it says everyone who is an attorney or is acting in concert with the Rigsbys, save for law enforcement officials, must return the documents. It does not say anyone who has the documents does not need to return them if they give them to law enforcement officials instead, particularly when those law enforcement officials already have their own copies of the documents. There is no way you can read it that way unless you put in words that aren’t there.

Well, you say, what about the second paragraph — it says the documents can be further “disclosed” to law enforcement “at their request.” To which I say, if I give you a piece of paper with your name written on it, I have not disclosed anything to you. If I tell you the surprise ending of a book you own and which you just read, I have not disclosed anything to you. Nor can you disclose documents or their contents to someone who already has the documents and has read their contents. Also, disclosing something in this context does not mean you can defy the first part of the order to return the documents so that you can disclose. And let’s remember another thing — the Court was fully aware as were all participants in this lawsuit that Hood had his own copies: it had been all over the news and it had also been discussed in pleadings before the court in the Renfroe v. Rigsby lawsuit. So let’s face it — Scruggs’ continued word games with these provisions of the injunction are getting old and sounding more and more childish and desperate.

Now, with more evidence gathered, prosecutors are highlighting another part of the injunction: that Scruggs did not provide the documents “at their request.” For evidence, they offer this December 13, 2006 e-mail to Scruggs from Courtney Schloemer, one of Hood’s assistant AGs. The e-mail said, “Upon reviewing my letter, I see that I was not clear that I propose taking custody of your documents with the permission of Judge Acker. I don’t want to thwart him and wind up in an Alabama jail.”

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