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All Hallows Eve (Halloween) is said to be when the spirit world is closet to the human world. Based on how I felt yesterday, there must have been some really bad shit in one or both of those worlds near where I was. Last night made yesterday seem like what I have been told dying and going to heaven is like – wonderful! For much of the night, my intestines felt like they were being stabbed by a thousand knives and I wished I was dead.
However, prompted by a glimpse of my diary in one of my dreams, I got up and searched for the diary again. I had searched for it after receiving my daughter Alice’s note and photographs of her two young children two days ago. This time, I found the diary and wrote a letter to Alice, to replace what I had written two days ago on a piece of paper I had found in a drawer of the writing table in my bedroom, because I could not find the dairy.
I then pulled out her note and read it again, and realized I’d gotten her son’s middle name wrong. I put mine aside and tried to go back to sleep, thinking I would copy mine in the morning and get her son’s middle name correct. No back to sleep. So, I opened my diary and started over, a new note. Somewhat shorter.
I as I wrote, I burst into tears, my heart heaved, I wept a good while. I felt it was a good letter. Then, I fell asleep.
Then, I dreamt of Key West attorney Robert Cintron. He was asleep and I woke him up. He was not happy. I said a person’s reputation has bearing on considering something a peson has done and says about it. Someone else came into the dream, a younger man, I didn’t recognize him. He said he agreed with me. I woke up, figured the dream was about this in the Key West Citizen yesterday. Robert Cintron used to practice law with this former county attorney.
Former county attorney behind illegal mailer
No charges are being filed following the investigation of illegal political mailers attacking a candidate for Tuesday’s city council election.
The Monroe County State Attorney’s Office initiated the review following an Oct. 21 complaint that the purchaser of the fliers, Scott Miller, did not live at the address printed on the mailers.
Under state law, independent political mailers must state the real name and address of the person who paid for it. Violating that law is a first-degree misdemeanor.
The fliers attacking Mark Senmartin for clearing hardwood hammock on his Bluefin Drive property were sent to Marathon voters. Senmartin was found to have committed a code infraction at a June 12 Marathon Code Compliance Board hearing.
The mailers state that that Scott Miller, who lives at 999 98th St., Ocean, paid for and sent the fliers. The address is part of an eight-unit condo complex. But an investigation found Miller does not live there.
In a nine-page report, investigators decided the man who coordinated the campaign distribution was former County Attorney Jim Hendrick.
“Clearly a law has been broken,” State Attorney Catherine Vogel said. “But I don’t want to tell people how to break the law and get away with it.”
According to the investigation, Hendrick spoke to “Scott Miller” on the phone, but could not provide contact information for Miller. After speaking with Miller, Hendrick arranged the design and printing of the mailers through Market Share, a Key West marketing company where his son Joseph Hendrick works.
“Hendrick admitted using his professional and personal connections, ordering, proofing, setting the type and arranging payment for a person he may or may not know,” the report states. “When asked why he did not bill for his services, Hendrick said that he didn’t consider this work.”
Hendrick told the Citizen the mystery man may not exist.
“In hindsight, there probably is a good chance there is no Scott Miller,” he said.
Hendrick said during the phone conversation, Miller acted like they were friends and had met each other.
“We have followed all of our leads,” Investigator Chris Weber said, noting the investigation was closed unless new information arises.
The investigation comes just days before Marathon’s Nov. 5 election, which has been described as the most heated in the town’s history. Senmartin is facing Pete Worthington and Richard Keating. The two with the most votes will get the two open seats on the council.
“I’m disappointed the investigation is closed,” Senmartin said. “This Hendrick guy, obviously he seems like one of the connected.”
Senmartin’s campaign slogan is “Committed, not connected.”
Vogel told the Citizen she called state Rep. Holly Raschein, R-Key Largo, to discuss proposing legislation to require publishers to confirm identification before printing political advertisements.
Hendrick was convicted in February 2007 of conspiracy, obstruction and witness tampering. In April 2009, a jury found he helped cover up a bribe former County Mayor Jack London received for helping a developer push through a development project in Marathon. However, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeal overturned Hendrick’s sentence of five years probation, stating it was procedurally flawed and there was no reasonable basis for the sentence.
Federal prosecutors appealed the sentence, arguing it was too light and he deserved prison time. They asked that Hendrick be sentenced to two to three years in prison for conspiracy, witness tampering and obstruction.
In September 2009, U.S. Judge William Zolch resentenced Hendrick, sparing him jail time but adding 220 days house arrest, 1,500 hours of community service, and 31 months to his probation.
Hendrick encouraged London and political consultant Randy Hilliard to lie to federal investigators about taking $82,500 from Marathon developer Marvin Rappaport in exchange for county commission approval of building permits to redevelop Halls Resort in 1996.
Hilliard taped several conversations with Hendrick, and the two could be heard creating scenarios to explain why Hilliard accepted money from the developer. They also talked about the federal investigation and Hilliard going before a federal grand jury.
Hendrick also advised London to leave for Ireland so he would not be questioned by a grand jury or investigators in a federal bribery and tax evasion investigation.
I used to play a lot chess with Jim Hendrick. We became pretty good friends, until he did something over evening dinner at his home one night that ended the friendship. His and my good friend Todd German was there that night.
Todd called me yesterday morning to say I should listen to Bill Becker’s conversation with Jim on Bill’s US 1 Radio’s news show yesterday, during the 8:30 a.m. news break. Todd said I needed to hear the interview before I wrote about the Citizen article. I said, when I saw the Citizen article, I thought to myself that I didn’t want to go within a million miles of it. But I would listen to the Becker interview after it was up on US 1 Radio’s website. I also said, I had seen Jim spin things before, at his home over dinner that night, when he sicked a Catholic priest on the Catholic federal judge at his resentencing hearing, and other times, and Jim had a long ways to go getting me to trust him.
Becker’s morning show is recorded and goes on the website around noon each day. Yesterday afternoon, I went to US1 Radio.com and opened Morning Magazine and listened to Becker’s report on the Citizen article, which included State Attorney Cathy Vogel’s live on the air politicizing. Then, Becker had Jim Hendrick live on the air.
Jim said he got duped, but what puzzled him was why the Citizen did not tell its readers what the target of the alleged illegal advertisement had done? Jim said it was a matter of public record, and had been reported in Key West the Newspaper. That was the part Todd had told me I needed to hear.
I called Todd and said I had heard the interview, and while I agreed that what the target had done needed to be aired by the Citizen, Jim ought to have known better than to get involved in it, especially for money which went to his son. I said, during the interview, Jim said he often gets calls about political advice. I said, that was not smart for him to say, given his background. I said, it didn’t look to me that Jim had learned anything.
You should be able to listen to Becker’s interview of Cathy Vogel and Jim Hendrick through tomorrow, Saturday, by going to us1radio.com and opening Thursday’s Morning Magazine.
Back to last night’s rocky horror show.
In a second dream, Robert Cintron said he agreed with me. He and Jim Hendrick both used to practice law in the Hugh Morgan Law Firm. (Now I’m thinking the other man in the first dream was Hugh Morgan, only younger than he now is.) After Jim was convicted in Federal Court and disbarred. he continued to maintain an office in Hugh Morgan’s firm for his consulting business. Then, Jim moved his consulting business out of Morgan’s firm, to his home, perhaps over my suggestion that his office being in Morgan’s firm might look like Jim was still practicing law.
Underneath that was, one day when Jim and I were playing chess in his office at Hugh Morgan’s firm, a fellow, whom I did not know, seemed like a client, came into Jim’s office and they had a casual conversation about what I don’t now remember, other than I remember the fellow asking Jim if he would try to get his law license reinstated some day, and Jim said he did not think so, because he was doing everything he did when he practiced law, except go to court.
After the two Cintron dreams last night, my father came to me in a dream with four different bottled homeopathic remedies. Four means my involvement in politics. I then woke up for good, and started on this post.
Right away, I recalled my father once telling me that he and his second wife had forgiven me for something I had done to them, which they viewed as very wrong, while I didn’t feel that way. But, my father said, I needed to apologize. I thought, did not say, if they had forgiven me, they would not say I needed to apologize. I never apologized, but I did say I wished it never had happened, and I meant it.
Anyway, what perhaps other three political arenas than Jim Hendrick, in which I am involved, are up today? I extracted these italicized items below from Citizen’s Comments in today’s Citizen. My unitalicized comments trailing.
It was sad watching the County cut down all the Australian Pines at Higgs Beach today. Those trees were there since I was a kid. Thanks to a few rich people who have convinced the County to fix a park that is not broken, we lost these beautiful shade trees. What other ‘improvements’ can we look forward to?”
As I was leaving Salute Ristorante the other day, after having lunch with City Commissioner Teri Johnston about Key West’s homeless challenges, I looked at the remaining Australian pines and said, “I did all I could to protect you.”
Over lunch, I had told Teri that the only reason her friend County Commissioner Heather Carruthers and her Higgs Beach Committee, which both Teri and I were on, had built that playground and fenced it in and everyone else out, who was not attending to a child, was to keep homeless people out of the kiosks under the Australian pines.
I said, that is the only reason they wanted to redesign the entire Higgs Beach park – to rid it of homeless people, which I told the County Commission at a commission meeting, right before Michael Behmke, who was on Heather’s committee, spoke to the county commissioners and admitted that was why they wanted the park redesigned and for the County and the Tourist Development Council to pay for it.
I told Teri, before Heather’s committee formed, there was a public meeting about Higgs Beach on the pavilion dead across from Salute,
where I told the audience that homeless people was all it was about, and Bempke had grabbed the microphone away from me. I told Terry that I would like to see Behmke be homeless, it would do him good.
“People who favor Fantasy Fest used to be referred to as degenerates”
Then, people who favored Fantasy Fest started calling homeless people degenerates. Any day or night of the week, I can go into Duval Street “sin” establishments and find lots degenerates.
“Hearing about the porn star’s flight from California to here makes me nostalgic for the old days when Dixie used to fly.”
For a long time Key West has been well known to be a haven for degenerates.
“What happened to Letters to the Editor?”
Damn good question. I emailed the Citizen a few days ago about my online subscription, and, as an aside, asked the same question, and got no answer back on letters to the editor.
Looked to me the Citizen went sour on letters to the editor during the bring bigger cruise ships to Key West referendum war was raging. The Publisher of the Citizen, Paul Clarin, was all for the bigger cruise ships. The letters to the editor against bigger cruise ships were vicious and truthful, while the letters to the editor in favor were vicious and untruthful.
Also during that time, the Citizen stopped publishing letters to the editor about the bigger cruise ship referendum. And, during that time, the Citizen discontinued the Citizen Blog, which allowed citizens to comment on current articles in the Citizen. Blog comments against the bigger cruise ships referendum were vicious and truthful.
The referendum was crushed 74% to 34%. Online Key West the Newspaper (www.thebluepaper.com), which is free (this week’s edition now available for viewing), attacked the bigger cruise ship referendum with vicious and truthful and even hilarious articles and editorial cartoons.
“I was here before cruise ships started coming to town and we did just fine. Granted, the military was here in full force but tourism thrived at the same time. It’s been doing so since Henry Flagler brought the railroad down in 1912.”
Yep, and tourism would jump if Key West turned the upper half of Smathers Beach into a clothing-optional beach like Haulover Beach near Miami. Build it and they will come.
“Regarding the homeless shelter: ‘Build it and they will come.’”
They will come anyway, because, as is sometimes boasted by elected city officials and wannabe elected city officials, Key West is “a world class tourist destination”.
As for the new homeless shelter, I told Terry Johnston over lunch at Salute, four things need to change.
1) Focus needs to shift to trying to help homeless who want to get back into mainstream; specifically, the city needs to give financial incentives to Florida Keys Outreach Coalition and Samuel’s House, which for many years have been offering down and out people an opportunity to turn their lives around. Those homeless, be they new or old homeless, need most of the city’s attention and funding.
2) The city needs to help fund Florida Keys Outreach Coalition and/or Samuel’s House providing housing and turn around programs for homeless families with children and homeless couples who do not have children. Right now, there is no such help in the city. Homeless families and couples have to break up to go into turn-around shelter programs.
3) The city needs to stop using its police to send homeless people to the Sheriff’s jail and to the hospital on Stock Island, just because they have committed a homeless “crime” – drinking in public, sleeping in public, arguing with law enforcement officers, peeing in public. This practice is financially killing the Sheriff (thus the county taxpayers) and the hospital.
4) The city needs a bigger shelter to house homeless who do not want to turn their lives around, to comply with the Pottinger Federal Court case settlement, which required Miami to provide overnight shelter, for free, to its homeless people, if Miami did not want them sleeping and camping outside. Samuel’s House and Florida Keys Outreach Coalition will not accept clients who have alcohol, marijuana or other street drugs in their urine. Most Key West homeless, including many new homeless, have one or more of said substances in their urine, and are unwilling to get cleaned up. The city’s too small bed-wise KOTS overnight shelter lets in drunks and users.
As will the new shelter. I am pretty sure the Sheriff has land, either under or near the jail, to accommodate the new city shelter. Use tents instead of air-conditioned huts, to get around permanent habitation zoning, building and hurricane code requirements. Homeless caught violating Key West homeless laws, as described above, are allowed to lock their bicycles in place where they are apprehended. Then, they are taken in a KWPD police cruiser, along with any of other their other belongings, directly to the new shelter, which is kept locked and guarded 24-7 by retired law enforcement officers or security guards, paid for by Key West. Each morning, apprehended homeless detainees are allowed to leave along with voluntary overnight homeless residents. This approach will save the Sheriff, the county taxpayers and the hospital a lot of money, and will be incentive for the Sheriff and the County Commission to go along with it. Word will spread throughout America of what happens to homeless people in Key West, who are caught violating city homeless ordinances. That will provide disincentive for homeless to come to Key West. This approach also will mitigate, if not prevent, whatever other Key West neighborhood ends up with a new homeless shelter in its own backyard voting in block against elected city officials who voted to put the shelter in the that neighborhood’s backyard, probably guaranteeing those elected city officials’ defeat in the next city election. This secured homeless shelter approach will not placate people who want no homeless people in Key West, or who believe homeless people should want to change, but it will get the homeless who are the biggest eyesores and misbehavers out of the city during daylight, when they are most visible, and it will get them out of the city at night. This approach will not cost the city an arm and a leg, and it will save the Sheriff and the county taxpayers and the hospital a lot of money. I cannot imagine any local judge telling the Sheriff that he cannot relocate a bigger, armed-guard-secured tent-KOTS deeper into his property. Where safer place for a homeless shelter?
“I went out to see the carnage on the two-way North Roosevelt project. I looked for decapitated victims, massive traffic jams, 40 car pileups — saw none. We now know for certain that 1) Our city fathers could have insisted on two-way traffic from the beginning, and prevented much of the damage to boulevard businesses, and 2) When the contractors move fast, they can do more work in two weeks than they did in the last six months.”
It’s not two way traffic. It’s three-way traffic, two lanes coming in, one lane going out. This would not have been possible until a lot of the seaside infrastructure, road and sidewalk work was completed. Where the city officials threw the North Roosevelt businesses under the bus was not pushing for round the clock construction, which the city officials did not do because they did not wish to disturb the North Roosevelt neighborhoods at night, nor the upscale Key West Yacht Club, nor the neighborhoods across from Garrison Bight, where City Commissioner Mark Rossi lives. Mark made it very plain at city commission meetings not long ago, that he did not want night-time work on North Roosevelt, because of the noise the sheetpile driver makes. The sheetpiling is the ”load-bearing” sea wall, on which all the rest of the new infrastructure, sidewalk and road depend.