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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Prosecutor: No recall for Toyota in fatal MN crash

Please click onto the COMMENTS for the story.

21 Comments:

Anonymous Pioneer Press said...

Lee's lawyers, prosecutors spar over blacked-out letter
By Emily Gurnon
egurnon@pioneerpress.com
Updated: 04/20/2010 10:47

The letter was sent Oct. 24, 2006, from Mark Solheim, a civil attorney representing Koua Fong Lee, to Brian Stofferahn, an attorney for a firm representing American Family Insurance.

Lee, 32, was the driver of a 1996 Toyota Camry that struck another car in June 2006, killing a man and two children. American Family insured the Camry.

The letter — written a year before Lee's criminal trial but released Tuesday — said an inspection of the car found that Lee had been braking at the time of the crash.

That is the first evidence from the car that corroborates Lee's testimony that he was hitting the brake when his car barreled into the back of the victims' Oldsmobile at Snelling and Concordia avenues in St. Paul. Lee was convicted of criminal vehicular homicide in 2007.

Prosecutors in the criminal trial, as well as Lee's defense attorney at the time, argued that he must have been stepping on the gas by mistake.

The sentence about the evidence that Lee was braking was redacted in one copy of the letter provided to Corpus Christi, Texas, attorney Robert Hilliard, who is working with Eagan attorney Brent Schafer to get a new trial for Lee, Hilliard said.

Hilliard accused Assistant Ramsey County Attorney Phil Carruthers, who prosecuted Lee, of redacting the letter.

Carruthers' boss, Ramsey County Attorney Susan Gaertner, reacted angrily, calling Hilliard's statement "false and outrageous."
"Here's a news flash for Mr. Hilliard. This is Minnesota, not Texas, and attorneys in this state are expected to abide by stringent ethical standards," Gaertner said in a written statement.

Gaertner said Tracy Eichhorn-Hicks, Lee's trial attorney, provided the letter to Carruthers. It came to prosecutors already redacted, she said.

Eichhorn-Hicks denied he redacted the letter.

Hilliard said two versions of the letter, one redacted and one intact, were passed along to him and Schafer when they requested Eichhorn-Hicks' files from the case.

The redacted portion, provided to reporters by the county attorney's office, makes up more than four paragraphs of the two-page letter. Other parts that were blacked out said the inspection found a water bottle and a roll of toilet paper on the driver's-side floor, which the inspector noted could have become lodged beneath the brake pedal, and a recommendation by Solheim that the insurance company pay the policy limits to the victims.

A call to Solheim was not returned Tuesday.

Emily Gurnon can be reached at 651-228-5522.

7:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Same old BS with Government! Doesn't make any difference if it is State, local or County.......they all lie to get whatever they want. The ends justifies the means and ethics and decency be damned. How did we get to the point where we have such dirty and slimy Government?

8:12 PM  
Anonymous Link said...

Link above to county website concerning Fong Lee

8:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gaertner is a DFL insider. Rotten to the core!

9:34 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

I was watching KSTP channel 5 news tonight, this guys car is still in the Saint Paul impound lot. An investigator went through this car over the last couple of days and found evidence the car was malfunctioning when Fong Lee had an accident killing 3 people.

Gaertner was giving channel 5 an interview on this issue and suggesting she was going to take her merry time looking into the matter of whether Fong Lee is a innocently convicted man.

In my opinion I think Gaertner is smoking crack. This would account for her physical appearance and lack of concern whether Fong Lee is an innocent man serving time or not.

Gaertner, put your crack pipe down and search your sole for some morality, it's people like YOU who give the judicial system and DFL party a bad name!

11:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everything Gaertner does is political! She needs to do the right frikken thing for once in her life and let this guy out of prison!

12:12 AM  
Anonymous Susan Gaertner said...

"Here's a news flash for Mr. Hilliard. This is Minnesota, not Texas, and attorneys in this state are expected to abide by stringent ethical standards,"

1:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The County Attorney's office will do anything and everything they can to covr this up or manipulate it so this guy never sees the light oif day.

1:34 AM  
Anonymous Pioneer Press said...

"I have the responsibility as a prosecutor to defend the integrity of the entire system," including the actions taken by police and the decision of the jury, she said.

Susan the days of hiding the truth are over!

1:58 AM  
Blogger Bob said...

I must be getting old. I just can't sleep much anymore.

ANYWAY, back in the early 80's I had a 64 Buick Riviera. A really nice car with a 425 engine dual four barrel carbs (big horsepower).

A motor mount was broke and if you gave it a little to much gas the motor would rise up hit the hood and pull the accelerator to the floor! And boy oh boy you had to hang on for life and shut the motor off fast.

I was sweet on Colleen Brennan the daughter of my good friend & employer Bill Brennan of Capitol City Airline Service. Bill was a friend of yours too wasn't he Dave Thune? I know you are reading.:) Well Colleen had her permit to drive and I wanted to help her get her license. I warned her of the accelerator problem and told her to be careful. In spite of my warning the car got away from Colleen and we hit a tree and totaled the car. Fortunately I was the only one hurt.

Unless you are really level headed you don't have time to think under these circumstances, most people panic and all they can do is bare down on the brakes. Brakes will not stop a car with the accelerator down.

Just because you may have driven a car for years and nothing like this has happened to you don't be ignorant it can and does happen to all kinds of cars for numerous mechnical reasons.

I am a hobbyist auto mechanic. I have worked on cars for years.

2:35 AM  
Anonymous Bill Dahn said...

Hey Bob where has Chuck and Eric been?
The trash will hit the fan on this post about Susan Gaertner and how she failed to do her job now and in the past.
I will be back withtrash about Her and John Wodele working at the county attorney and He was never a attorney and was acting as witch under his girl friend Susan Gaertner.
Remember Gaetnet covered up Jesse Ventura and Dean Barkley breaking the law by paying for Bill Dahn and James Kane >> MN. 211b:16 << to drop out of the Reform Party and Dean Barkley paid for Dahn and Kane to RE-Register as Republicans.

Bill Dahn


www.BillDahn.com

8:43 AM  
Blogger Bob said...

Bill, Chuck and Eric know the end is near for their fucked up party insiders. Don't expect to see them here anymore they were nuetered by the citizens of A Democracy. No balls left.

9:32 AM  
Anonymous Renee Jenson said...

From the bowels of Saint Paul Issues and Forums

From: Renee Jenson Date: 2006 Apr 25 16:49 UTC Short link

Gaertner got a reprieve on Saturday thanks to the generosity of Mr.
Tennison. She owes him one.

I hopes she learned that some of us are dissatisfied with her "leadership"
on some issues. I hope she does some things to turn our thoughts around
durning the next four years. Things like:

- How she treats people that are seriously mentally ill. She really needs a
deep understanding of mental health issues. Give NAMI a call Susan. They
will be glad to help you out. Sheesh. There is no excuse for your
stupidity (sorry to be so blunt) on this issue.

- People with serious mental illness are in extreme pain. They belong in a
hospital. Not in a jail.

- Her lack of leadership on the need to revise the state defn. of insanity.

- The way she treats some of the kids in the legal system. Susan, girls 12
yrs old cannot consent to sexual intercourse. It is rape.

- There are DFLers running for office and there are others running for
office. You are a DFLer. Please support ONLY DFLers (and supporting people
who do not break the law would be good too)

So you have 4 years to redeem yourself. Please try to do this.

I don't mince words. This is the last I will say on the subject.

9:55 AM  
Anonymous Mitch Berg said...

From the bowels of Saint Paul Issues and Forums

From: mitch berg Date: 2006 Apr 25 19:36 UTC Short link

That's the problem with living in a one-party city; we
get stuck with useless apparatchiks like Gaertner.

9:57 AM  
Anonymous Leslie Davis said...

The following is an excerpt from Leslie Davis website concerning Susan Geartners less than ethical practices.

BRIBERY AND PAYOFFS

Jesse Ventura: bribed Bill Dahn to leave the Reform Party in July 1998. Dahn had registered to run for governor in the Reform Party in order to complain about an improper government sponsored insulation program that contaminated his house. Ventura wanted Dahn out of the Reform Party so he wouldn’t have competition in the September primary election and could keep his KFAN radio show. He lost the show anyway because Dick Franson warned KFAN that he would complain to the feds if they let Ventura stay on the air without giving equal time to his opponents. Doug Friedline and, secretary Mavis Huddle arranged for Ventura and campaign committee chairman Dean Barkley to go to Dahn’s house on July 19, 1998 and promise to fix his house if he would leave the Reform Party and register as a Republican. The media reported that the bribe was a $600 fee Barkley paid for Dahn to register as a Republican after leaving the Reform Party. It was not. The bribe was the promise to fix Dahn’s house. I have significant evidence that Barkley worked to fulfill the bribe. However, after Ventura was elected Barkley lost interest in Dahn and Dahn lost his house.

FIXED THE BRIBERY INVESTIGATION

Complaints were filed against Barkley and Ventura for bribing Dahn and Ventura and Barkely fixed the investigation of the bribe. Two complaints were filed with Ramsey County Attorney Susan Gaertner. When Gaertner received the complaints she should have immediately declared a conflict of interest because her employee/lover John Wodele was a personal friend of Dean Barkley. Gaertner held the case until after Ventura was elected and in December she declared a conflict of interest and sent the case to Anoka County to be fixed.

10:24 AM  
Anonymous Leslie Davis continued said...

PARTICIPANTS IN THE FIX

Charlie Weaver (former Anoka County prosecutor)
Phil Villaume (Barkley attorney and brother-in-law)
Thomas Heffelfinger (Ventura attorney, former U.S. Attorney)
Dean Barkley (Ventura campaign manager
James Weber (Anoka County prosecutor)
Susan Gaertner (Ramsey County Attorney)
John Wodele (Gaertner employee lover)
Charles Balck (Assistant Ramsey County Attorney)
This group fixed the results and Weber announced them on December 31, 1998 (New Years Eve Day).
Gaertner caused it to take 161 days to get a decision on the bribery complaints.

December 28, 1998, in advance of the bribery decision,
unemployed John Wodele, boyfriend of crooked county attorney Gaertner,
was rewarded for helping with the fix by being named Ventura's Communications Director.

December 31, 1998, Anoka County prosecutor attorney James Weber
dismissed the bribery complaints against Barkley and Ventura.

January 2, 1999, unemployed Charlie Weaver was appointed Commissioner of Public Safety
as his reward for fixing the bribery case in Anoka County.
Barkley set up Weaver for the fix by having him appointed to
Ventura’s transition advisory committee on November 17, 1998.

February 4, 1999, James Weber, Anoka County prosecutor who dismissed the bribery complaints,
was appointed to the Governor’s Commission on Judicial Selection.

10:24 AM  
Blogger Bob said...

DFL insider/police car bomber Sara Jane Olson aka Kathleen Ann Soliah committed voter fraud voting under her assumed name while evading apprehension. Susan Gaertner refused to charge Soliah with a felony---> voter fraud.

11:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The DFLs idea of an ivestigation is always to send it out for fixing. Same thing with the Jessamine deal and the landlords lawsuit. Not even a shan investigation. Just fix it internaly and move on.....maybe give out some promotions or higher pay to shut people up.

1:38 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

Folk's I heard from Eric.

He said he was going to come here and whoop ass when he is through spreading the tentacles of socialism. :)

Eric is real busy with his job.

8:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Code of Ethics

Minnesota, not Texas, and attorneys in this state are expected to abide by stringent ethical standards," Gaertner said in a written statement.

She lies like the other that are in that same party she's on.

9:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Code of Ethics

Ethics is a quality that St.Paul never had and just don't give a damn what the taxpayers think of the matter.

10:02 PM  

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