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EAST CLEVELAND TATTLER

May Issue Number 11, May 2012 eastcle lev get you Send an email to eastclevelandleaks@gmail.com to get the Tattler emailed to you

VP Lewis Stories and facts Councilquestions public dont add up at PD exposes police
PDs politics writer isnt even registered to vote. Donaldsons false ID of Hicks sent an innocent man to prison. Trust the PD? Definitely not.
By CLYDE CLODHOPPER The East Cleveland Tattler received an email at its eastclevelandleaks@gmail.com address from the Plain Dealers leading political writer, Mark Naymik. Naymik was looking for Eric Brewer. It was obvious he had the wrong email address. Based on his questions Naymik seemed to think the newspaper publisher, editor, journalist, mayor, chief of staff to the mayor of East Cleveland, special assistant to the mayor of Cleveland and ex-housing authority communications boss was the mastermind behind the Tattler and wanted to know if he was staging a mayoral comeback. As the leading political writer for the all-powerful Plain Dealer, Naymiks question showed his political ignorance. If he had conducted a quick online search for the citys charter and looked up the qualifications for becoming a mayoral candidate in East Cleveland he would have saved himself the humiliation of a written cussing out. In order to campaign for mayor of East Cleveland, Brewer would have had to return to the city last September so he could meet the two year residency requirement to qualify as a candidate. And if Naymik had reviewed the story his colleague Stan Donaldson wrote about the exmayor last September, he would have known Brewer didnt live in East Cleveland. Not only was the question ridiculous and aimed at the wrong parties, it underscored how little the Plain Dealers leading political writer knows about politics. A quick check of voter registration records on file with the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections offers an explanation of why the Plain Dealers leading political writer, the guy whos been helping shape political thinking in northeast Ohio for the states largest newspaper for 11 years, couldnt ask the right basic question. Naymik isnt a registered voter. Naymik didnt respond to two sets of questions that were sent to him in two email

chiefs cover-up

Detective who used murdered prostitute as out of pocket informant resigns in tears after hitting handcuffed prisoner
We dont want to say nothing about dudes head cause there might be something up with it. But damn! AND THE PLAIN DEALERS FRAUD OF THE YEAR AWARD GOES TO MARK SPITBALL NAYMIK: Low reporting standards and a lack of strong and publicly accountable editorial leadership are the reasons the PD has never won a Pulitzer prize or broken any major stories. Naymik passes off bullshit, cheap shots and personal attacks as political commentary and lives off tips from political snitches like Gary Norton. When inaccurate reporting is criticized, Plain Dealer and Cleveland.com web managers delete blog comments from readers who challenge the authenticity of stories. Most politicians who talk to PD reporters complain of being misquoted.

By JULINDA MIADOLLA One day after Council Vice President Chantelle C. Lewis raised public questions about allegations that detective Randy Hicks had hit a handcuffed prisoner, Hicks resigned in tears hoping to avoid prosecution for violating the prisoners civil rights. Lewis had learned that Arnold Black was arrested for possessing marijuana over the weekend . Hicks reportedly arrived at the police station drunk and told Black that he had fucked
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messages from this writer. The Tattler wanted to know why Naymik isnt a registered voter and what qualified him to write about politics other than his ability to write. Naymiks never held or campaigned for elected office, or managed any political campaigns. The Tattler asked if hed ever put a political sign in his yard, handed out literature at a polling location or even passed out condoms for the health department and got no response. The larger question for the newspapers readers is why the Plain Dealers editorial managers assigned someone so obviously unqualified to be its chief political writer for the
Flip it over

HICKS CRIED LIKE A BITCH: Ex-Judge Sandra Walker got pissed when Randy Hicks attempted to charge a man with a felony for spitting on his shoe when he arrested him. Dont waste any sympathy on this asshole. Prosecute him.

TATTLER, NO. MAY EAST CLEVELAND TATTLER, NO. 11, MAY 2012

TWO PA THESE TWO PAGES ARE MORE CREDIBLE THAN THE ENTIRE PD

wa for inaccurate, Plain Dealer leads the way for inaccurate, reporting unqualified reporter ters lazy reporting with unqualified reporters
Im just so important and all my colleagues are jealous of me because Im married to a doctor. Im going to be a lawyer one day. Hercules. Hercules. Hercules.

DONT TRUST HIM. HE S NOT A BROTHER: The PDs Stan Donaldson could have been a hero to the black community if he had stood up in court and admitted that he had personally identified the wrong man in a murder case; and then questioned why prosecutor William Mason continued to prosecute Joaquin Hicks when he had firsthand knowledge that his own testimony and identification was wrong. But this Tom has failed to use his position at the PD to say anything because it would be a professional embarassment.
From the previous page

last 11 years? A more critical thought is how has Naymiks lack of intimacy with the political process dumbed-down the newspapers readers and insulted professional politicians who might have thought they were talking to a political equal, at least in terms of knowledge? Media critic Jon Davis said a misperception among greater Cleveland media consumers is that the reporters shaping their thinking about important topics actually know something, and that the stories they produce and write are based on some body of knowledge that makes them an expert, or at the very least, knowledgeable. But like Naymik, the majority of journalists working in Cleveland and elsewhere attended universities where they learned the mechanics of the profession, but developed no level of intimacy with critical topics. Few, if any, make public requests for easily available public records under Ohios relaxed open records laws. They dont attend public meetings, review budgets, read reports or even read audits as James Ewinger allegedly admitted when he wrote a story about East Clevelands impending return to fiscal emergency in January. Stories are developed at the reporters desk and many think getting quotes from individuals with titles gives them carte blanche to write what they want about public people and events when an Ohio defamation case requires them to write a substantially accurate summation of information contained in public records in order

to reduce a media outlets liability for defamation. As an example, Davis said a persual of the campus newspapers for each of the states major universities will show very limited reporting about the official activities of the board of trustees and faculty that serves the campus. There was no indication from what he read that university journalism students conducted public records requests and obtained reports about the university presidents contract, email records, cell phone records, appointment schedules or reviewed and reported about their travel and expense accounts to see how student loan dollars are spent. They dont review the universitys budgets or offer any commentary about annual state audits to determine if the university president and his or her top managers are actually spending public funds in accordance with Ohio laws. Eric Brewer said he refuses to speak to anyone at the PD but agreed to talk with us. Its understood why university presidents and officials who develop and approve curriculum would not want inquisitive journalism students investigating their official conduct. A progressive journalism curriculum and campus newspaper would develop a generation of well-trained journalists who honed their craft by examining the official acts of the university president, trustees and faculty whose salaries are paid by their student loan dollars, Brewer said. As a former publisher and politician, I think this would create trained journalists whose heightened critical thinking skills could actually usher in a new era of public accountability because they mastered the nuances of the political bureaucracy their tax dollars paid for while students in college. Student journalists have every right to demand public access to a universitys records. Theyre investing $40,000 to well over $200,000 in student loans for their education so theyd better get the best bang for their bucks while theyre in school. Without them none of the officials would have jobs. Brewer said Naymik and writers like the Plain Dealers Stan Donaldson suffer because of the low standards that have not only been set for them by the universities they attended, but also by editorial bosses who allow them to cover-up bad reporting by deleting critical comments from knowledgeable bloggers posted at the end of stories. I read that the Plain Dealer deleted three blog postings from the Tattler after a Tom Feran story quoted Gary Norton when he lied and claimed to have found $3.2 million in an overlooked KeyBank account. Of course it was all my fault because the Plain Dealer and my newspapers have had a long competitive history, Brewer said. Naymik didnt have to register to vote or know anything about politics because the person evaluating his fitness for the assignment didnt know he didnt know, and didnt know to check, like it seems the Tattler did, to see if he was even
Go to page 4. The PDs pissed. This is some good-assed writin.

We might be acting a tad juvenile from time to time with the Photoshop shit. But these two freaky flies seem to have found a comfy home.

Lyin azz Gary now yin Gary now says ga says council gave more him $2.5 million more
By HORAS ASOL Mayor Gary Norton didnt wait until the May 1st council meeting was over before he left to run to the media with yet another story to claim a victory that didnt exist. Norton sent out a news release but only Fox8s Jessica Dabrowski picked it up and placed it on the television stations website. He said council increased the citys budget by $2.5 million, or from $14.1 to $16.6 million. The problem is it didnt happen according to a statement issued by vice president Chantelle Lewis. Norton still has $14.1 million for 2012. What happened, according to Lewis statement, is that council moved health care costs from an aggregate fund to a line item in the fund of each department. Lewis sent her statement to Fox8s Dabrowski and set the email to alert her when the reporter received the document. The alert returned that Dabrowski deleted Lewis statement without bothering to open it. That left only Nortons side of the story on the television stations website. Sources say Norton now denies he made the claim to Dabrowski. Council passed ordinances ordering Norton to pay employee medical benefits, to return crossing guards to the streets and demanded proof of his claim that he found $3.2 million in an overlooked KeyBank account. Lewis introduced an ordinance ordering adding criminal dereliction of duty penalties if Norton or an employee violated it . The Tattler confirmed that crossing guards were MIA for two days after the ordinance. Whats his excuse now?

TATTLER, NO. MAY EAST CLEVELAND TATTLER, NO. 11, MAY 2012

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Detectives resignation puts Spotts in hot seat


From the first page. Keep reading.

up his party and hit him at least twice while the defenseless man was handcuffed. Police and corrections officers are accused of leaving Black in a holding cell without food or the required telephone call to an attorney or relatives. Sources close to the councilwoman say Lewis also wants to know how much marijuana Black possessed . She said cops have been prosecuting individuals with less than 100 grams of marijuana in violation of a city ordinance that makes possession of that amount a minor misdemeanor and a ticketable offense. Council approved that law at the request of the ex-mayor in 2008. A recent appeals court decision blasted police for claiming they could prosecute for less than 100 grams if it was packaged for distribution when the ordinance doesnt specify it. Lewis has blasted the mayor and city employees for making up their own laws instead of following the ones passed by council. Sources say Lewis, Joy Jordan, Nathaniel Martin and Barbara Thomas are also concerned about allegations that Spotts tried to cover for Hicks. He really didnt want this to get out and become public because he and Randy are friends and drinking buddies, said an East Cleveland police officer who asked not to be identified. The federal, state and local laws Spotts is supposed to enforce while being paid as a police officer make his friendship with Hicks irrelevant. As East Clevelands second top law enforcement official, behind the mayor, Spotts has exceeded the authority of the police chief by failing to have arrested or caused now ex-detective Hicks to be arrested when he showed up for work allegedly drunk and armed on April 25. The police chief had no choice but to have ordered Hicks to be placed in handcuffs, fingerprinted, jailed, charged and prosecuted. But instead of arresting Hicks or demanding to know why police officers who witnessed or knew hed hit Black didnt arrest him, sources said Spotts hoped the incident would blow over. Sources cautioned council to watch out for Spotts conspiring with law director Ron Riley to try and intimidate Black by overcharging him and then offering a deal to drop the charges in exchange for his not suing the city. Long time city hall observers said Spotts failure to arrest and initiate prosecution against Hicks is the same type of activity that got Patricia Lane fired when she violated the exmayors orders to remove Tifney Cleveland from the detective bureau and strip her of having any access to LEADS. The ex-mayor had learned that Cleveland was under an FBI investigation for helping her drug dealing husband run his criminal enterprise from the detective bureau. Sources said he was outraged that no cop came forward or arrested her even though all knew she was married to a drug dealer and had bought three new vehicles and three homes with her $40,000 a year salary. Hitting a handcuffed prisoner while using the authority of a police officer to do so is a violation of Title 18 of the United States Code, sections 241 and 242. Both are federal offenses with

Black and hispanic cops have complained that Spotts has discipined them harsher than the white cops he goes drinking with while driving city police cars to their favorite bars Go to 44112 News on YouTube to keep up with the latest video clips of East Cleveland city council meetings and to get previous editions of the East Cleveland Tattler IS COUNCIL CONSIDERING A REQUEST TO THE FBI TO INVESTIGATE THE CITYS POLICE? Council members say the cops who shot up an 18 year old girls car and nearly killed her over a traffic offense drew a strong negative reaction from the citys residents and a demand for police reforms. They say residents have grown weary of the police chiefs protection of bad cops and have no confidence in the police departments investigation of citizen complaints against cops who everyone knows are committing crimes and violating civil rights in uniform. Council vice president Chantelle C. Lewis led off a discussion about a handcuffed prisoner who was hit twice by a drunken detective. Lewis blasted the cop and the police chief and created the pressure that forced him to resign the next day. Sources say the council wants criminally-minded police officers prosecuted, not disciplined.

penalties of up to 10 years in prison for cops to use their badges to deprive American citizens like Black of their civil rights. If Black had died while in police custody, federal law provides sentences up to the death penalty for the violators. The two federal laws are mirrored in both Ohios revised code and, to a lesser extent, in East Clevelands codified ordinances. All are laws Spotts, Hicks and every other police officer employed with the city were administered and signed an oath of office to uphold. But critics call Spotts a criminal-investigationobstructing-cop-apologist who even lied to the former mayor when reporter Carl Monday brought forth a witness who tied the controversial detective to the strangulation death of a local prostitute named Sandra Little Bit Varney in 2007. Records on file with Shaker Heights Municipal Court reveal that Spotts told the exmayor Hicks didnt know her. The court records show he flipped and changed stories when the ex-mayor ordered him to join him in a meeting with ex-FBI Special Agent in Charge Frank Figgliuzzi in 2009. At that meeting Spotts confessed to the federal agents that Hicks had used the murder victim as an out of pocket confidential informant, which the ex-mayor believed gave credibility to complaints hed heard that the cop was robbing drug dealers of

cash and drugs to pay his snitches. Instead of investigating Hicks for the illegal use of informants, Spotts did nothing and waited for Gary Norton to take office knowing he wouldnt order an investigation because the detective had helped him distribute stolen personal property that had been delivered to the incoming mayor by Pitassio Taylor. Spotts obstructed a criminal investigation of that incident by telling police officers whod been ordered to reveal who distributed the stolen property, to write that they first learned of the stolen pictures on television. Instead of honestly reporting the truth, documents show the citys law enforcement officers all followed his obstructive lie. Recently, Spotts and the citys police officers used a commanders hearing that functions in violation of the citys codified ordinances as a cop-on-cop disciplinary process to keep Hicks, detective James Naylor and Scott Gardner from being prosecuted and terminated for stealing three big screen televisions from the property room in the bureau. That process was outlawed by the former mayor and reinstituted by Spotts when Norton took office to avoid holding cops accountable to the same standards as other employees. Spotts was hoping Hicks resignation would
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TATTLER, NO. MAY EAST CLEVELAND TATTLER, NO. 11, MAY 2012

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Cheap shots, character attacks make up local politics reporting


So what the storys long. We had a lot to say.

a registered voter. Some knowledge is so basic one wonders how professionally-trained journalists miss it. I gave Mark a story when he wrote for the Free Times and he didnt get it right. But that didnt matter to the Plain Dealer who thought his clips were great. Based on what I knew about him I wouldnt have assigned him to write about politics for my newspapers. Davis said Plain Dealer reporters like Naymik, Donaldson, Ewinger and Feran hide behind the power of the newspaper but not behind knowledge. They stand behind inaccurate information in stories even when evidence shows it to be untrue. Its like watching journalists grilling presidential candidates at a debate. Logically, with four living ex-presidents (George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W Bush and James Earl Carter) one might think the public would learn more about the job if candidates were questioned by those whod already held it. But by virture of the fact that they look good on television and speak well, journalists whove never held elected office get to ask questions that a professional politician knows arent even close to right, Davis said. Davis said Donaldsons been criticized by the subjects of his stories for inserting non-existent facts: a reality the Plain Dealers editorial managers conveniently ignore. But what its leaders cant ignore is Donaldsons damning and false testimony against Joaquin Hicks, an innocent man he helped to send to prison for a murder he didnt commit. Hicks victorious appellate decision, which was rendered by the 8th District Court of Appeals, revealed that Donaldson picked Hicks as a murder suspect even though he didnt look anything like the man hed described to police. He identified another man in a police line-up and still sat in court and said Hicks murdered his sisters friend when the guy went outside Scorchers to buy $200 worth of weed.

DID WOIOS LYNNA LAI ... LIE?: Council President Joy Jordan said she didnt hang up on TV19s Lynna Lai when the boob-ily-enhanced reporter broadcast a less than accurate story about whether or not council had appropriated money to pay East Clevelands employee medical benefits.

The real suspect had hair on his head, was clean-shaven and a face dotted with pockmarks according to Donaldsons eyewitness report to Cleveland police detectives. Hicks was bald, smooth-skinned and bearded. Hicks lawyer was so disgusted with Donaldsons testimony at trial that he asked the Plain Dealer reporter how Joaquin Hicks grew a beard overnight when the reporter had told police the suspect was clean-shaven. Did Donaldsons shakey testimony threaten his credibility at the Plain Dealer, or were they concerned with his driving under suspension cases in Mahoning County? Did it even matter to the newspaper, just for the sake of credibility, that one of its reporters perceptive powers were so bad he identified the wrong man in a murder case ? If Donaldsons perceptive abilities are so impaired he couldnt correctly identify a man he claims to have seen at least three times in an hour, right before the man allegedly shot someone at a little celebration he was attending, Davis questioned whether he could be be trusted to perceive the right details when hes listening to an interview subject.

Hicks face prosecution Hicks could still face prosecution


let his friend avoid prosecution and keep his retirement and Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy (OPOTA) certification. That way he could remain in law enforcement. But sources close to Council President Joy Jordan say council isnt having it. Hicks conduct will more than likely lead to a federal lawsuit being filed against the city for his alleged violation of Blacks civil rights, the source said. council wants him prosecuted because that will send a clear message to the police, the community and the courts that the city did not condone his unlawful actions and took aggressive steps to hold him accountable. Some are beginning to wonder if Spotts should be prosecuted or if council should ask the FBI for help because of his growing history of obstructing criminal investigations that involve himself, other officials and police officers he wants to protect. Hicks may be gone but this is far from
This is the last little bit

over, said the unidentified city cop. Everyone over here is quiet and wondering if anything else is going to come out. They were shocked when Lewis unloaded on Spotts, and even more shocked when Hicks resigned the next day. There are a lot of guys over here with their own dirt. They really dont want council asking the FBI and justice department for help. If councils recent moves are unnerving to the citys employees, Jordan, who was recently called stupid by Gardner, the police supervisors union president and television thief, is on the warpath. City employees think they can do what they want, say what they want and ignore our laws as if they dont exist, Jordan said. We have a mayor we cant trust and our confidence in the police chief has faded. We cant keep paying for mistakes. The citys $5.8 million deficit says we have to hold them accountable.

Davis said revelations about Naymik not being a registered voter might shock greater Clevelands political community, but his backgrounds no different than most of the other reporters in this town who learned journalism in unversities no different than those in Ohio. All Clevelands media consumers need to do is look at how the Plain Dealer and the television stations have covered Gary Nortons latest media stunts to know they didnt stumble on the right facts, Davis said. Joy Jordan is grumbling that Lynna Laid to channel 19s viewers when she said she hung up on her and didnt want to talk about Nortons employee benefits lie. Norton told reporters in early April that council failed to provide funding for school crossing guards in the 2012 budget. When Jordan showed reporters on paper that the money was in the budget, Norton returned with another story claiming its inclusion was a high profile typo and thats what reporters reported. Norton took to the streets in a dramatic display of phony concern for the citys school children saying he would perform crossing guard duties until council gave him the money he wanted. He used his daughters attendance at Superior Elementary School to boost his argument, but didnt tell reporters, and they didnt ask, if she was driven there everyday. After the media left Norton stopped performing the crossing guard duties himself and didnt replace them with firefighters who were authorized to do so by a 1944 ordinance. The mayor had the power to order firefighters to the streets until the regular guards returned, if he really cared about the children, but he didnt. When council approved an ordinance that ordered the mayor to get the crossing guards back to the streets, Norton said hed enforce it the next day and didnt. Not a single reporter, including those whod already covered the story, bothered to check back to see if Norton had followed up. If a child had been killed the media would have been here like a lynch mob pointing fingers, said resident Vic Johnson. Davis said news reporting in Cleveland is so bad that reporters, many of whom are from out of town and have no historical perspective about the area, spread bad facts from one story to another at the expense of high quality information. Most local news sites avoid scrutiny by deleting critical comments from bloggers. The Plain Dealer and other media outlets serve us daily doses of misinterpreted, misunderstood and just outright wrong facts about the people and events shaping the thinking of those who live in the greater Cleveland area, and then launch personal attacks against their critics, Davis said. What makes the Plain Dealer and its editorial staff immune from criticism when the misinformation they disseminate is negatively impacting the political process and the selection of qualified candidates to manage political bureaucracies that provide important services to society? It is often The Plain Dealers endorsed candidates who have stolen, mismanaged and plundered public treasuries under noses of reporters like Naymik.