April 20th, 2011
Re: Request for Investigation of Grand Jury Tampering by Merced County Counsel James Fincher
You will find a series of letters and documents attached providing substantial evidence that indicate that Merced County Counsel James Fincher willfully tampered with a Merced County Grand Jury investigation of himself and other high ranking public officials and law enforcement agencies of Merced County.
As I told the FBI Duty Agent yesterday, it is a relatively simple matter of proving the jury tampering that I allege Merced County Counsel James Fincher committed based upon these three facts:
1. March 16th, 2011: A Grand Jury voted to have an investigation of Merced County Counsel James Fincher. The investigation was underway.
2. On April 7th, 2011: Merced County Counsel James Fincher provided erroneous legal advice to the Grand Jury investigating himself in violation of Penal Codes 934-936 and advised a re-vote take place to terminate the investigation. The Grand Jury re-voted and the investigation was terminated against Merced County Counsel James Fincher.
3. James Fincher, a licensed attorney since 1998, and aware of his public duty not to act as a legal advisor to a Grand Jury investigation of himself according to Penal Code 934-936….. DID SO TO TAMPER WITH THE GRAND JURY VOTES IN ORDER TO TERMINATE THE INVESTIGATION AGAINST HIMSELF (AND OTHERS).
With that said, the next words from Detective Steve McGarrett, would be, “Book ‘em, Danno.” But, to provide some additional information to reach the same conclusion, please read on.
The facts briefly are:
1. May 2010: I filed a Merced County Grand Jury complaint against Merced DA Larry Morse, James Fincher, and others. You may go to BadgerFlats.com to view the complaint in full.
2. March 16th, 2011: I was contacted by Grand Juror Annette Tomsha and informed that the majority of the Grand Jurors voted to conduct a formal investigation. I was requested to be interviewed across several sessions. I agreed to such. The first interview was tentatively scheduled for March 24th, 2011, then cancelled, moved to March 31st, 2011, then cancelled, then moved to April 7th, 2011.
3. April 7th, 2011: I was contacted by Grand Juror Tomsha and told that Merced County Counsel, James Fincher, a subject of the complaint, had advised the Grand Jurors that in his legal opinion, I had breached the confidentiality of the Grand Jury by speaking on a radio program in Monterey, California on April 2nd, 2011.
Tomsha said that Fincher advised the Grand Jury that because of such alleged breach of such alleged confidentiality, the jury should re-vote to terminate the investigation.
Tomsha told me that a re-vote was taken based upon such advice from Fincher and the investigation was terminated.
Tomsha told me that she would request Grand Jury Foreperson to send me a letter detailing that the investigation was terminated due to the advice of James Fincher saying that I had violated some confidentiality. As of April 20th, 2011, I have not received any such letter.
4. April 7th-9th, 2011: I conducted additional research to verify what I had already understood. There was no confidentiality that I owed to the Grand Jury that I could have breached.
I spoke to: Trinity County Former Grand Juror Foreperson, Dr. William Koch (530) 623-2872, California Grand Jurors Association President, Mr. Keath North (916) 471-6500, Grand Jury Expert, Mr. Peymon Mottahedeh (760) 868-5834, California attorneys, Mr. Gary Zerman (661) 259-2570 and Mr. Shawn Mills (831) 372-3000, and others.
These individuals verified that there was no confidentiality owed by me to the Grand Jury. They also stated in no uncertain terms that in their opinion, Merced County Counsel James Fincher could not render any legal opinions to a Grand Jury investigation he was the subject of. They all concurred that in their opinion, Fincher partook in tampering with the Grand Jury.
I then gathered various informational articles from the internet verifying that there was no confidentiality owed by me to the Grand Jury, especially in light of the fact that I was the complainant, and had never met with the Grand Jury while they were in session.
I also reviewed again CA Penal Codes 934-936 which prohibits the County Counsel, or DA Morse, from advising the Grand Jury in regards to an investigation they were the subjects of.
Thereafter, I sent the information in a series of email to Grand Jury Foreperson Barbara Ellington and Grand Juror Annette Tomsha. I also attached to the email audio excerpts of the two hour radio program of April 2nd, 2011 on which I spoke. If I recall correctly, I mentioned the Merced County Grand Jury investigation for a total sum of 3 minutes.
The email letters summarized my conversations with Grand Juror Tomsha concerning the information of her informing me that James Fincher had provided the grossly erroneous legal opinion which terminated the investigation of him and others.
NOTE: Grand Juror Tomsha during her conversation with me clearly sounded frightened (not of me) and frustrated. She told me that she knew that what Fincher was doing was wrong but there was nothing that she could do about it.
5. April 11th, 2011: I filed police report #11-18328 for the crime of jury tampering with the Merced Police Department. I was interviewed by Lieutenant Matt Williams for two (2) hours and 45 minutes. I named James Fincher as the suspect, Grand Jurors Annette Tomsha and Barbara Ellington as the witnesses, and myself as the victim. Lieutenant Williams said that it was a Federal crime but would see what he could do in starting to conduct the basic investigation. Williams said that due to the easily discernible conflicts, that he would be unable to forward the report for investigation to the DA or the Attorney General’s Office. Williams said he would be in contact with me. As of April 20th, 2011, I have not heard yet from Lieutenant Williams other than a brief email saying that he was reviewing the information.
6. April 14th – 15th , 2011: I sent additional emails requesting communications from the Grand Jury members. I also provided them with links to news articles concerning the Modoc County Grand Jury stating that public officials there had intimidated the jurors with threats of litigation. As of April 20th, 2011, I have not yet heard from the Grand Jury.
7. April 19th, 2011 0930 hours: I contacted the FBI office in Sacramento at approximately 0930 hours and spoke in detail of the alleged jury tampering by Merced County James Fincher with a female duty agent. I told the agent that I was requesting that FBI agents meet with me personally to assess my credibility. I also told the duty agent that I preferred not to interview with the FBI office in Fresno, due to one of the Los Banos law enforcement subjects of the Grand Jury investigation having working ties to such office.
I informed the agent I was willing to travel to Sacrament, which is actually closer and more convenient to me than Fresno. The FBI office of Modesto would be most preferred.
The duty agent said that she would “attempt” to get someone to call me back to arrange a meeting.
8. April 19th, 2011 1630 hours: I sent an email to approximately 1500 attorneys, citizens, and public officials in Merced, Stanislaus, and Fresno County with a copy going to the Grand Jury, which is attached, alleging that Merced County Counsel James Fincher tampered with the jurors of the Grand Jury Investigation against himself and others.
9. April 20th, 2011 1318 & 1500hours: I left messages with the Sacramento office of the FBI requesting a call back as a follow up to the conversation of April 19th, 2011.
You have been provided substantial evidence of public corruption by Merced County Counsel James Fincher and Merced County public officials involved with Grand Jury tampering of an investigation of them.
It mandates taking expedited action. I should not need to remind you of what the FBI’s position on public corruption is, but I will.
Taken directly from the FBI website it is:
It’s our top priority among criminal investigations—and for good reason.
Public corruption poses a fundamental threat to our national security and way of life. It impacts everything from how well our borders are secured and our neigh borhoods protected…to verdicts handed down in courts…to the quality of our roads, schools, and other government services. And it takes a significant toll on our pocketbooks, wasting billions in tax dollars every year.
The FBI is singularly situated to combat this corruption, with the skills and capabilities to run complex undercover operations and surveillance.
Public officials tampering with a grand jury investigation, though a heinous crime, is only the tip of the iceberg. Why they took such drastic action is an iceberg larger than the one that sunk the Titanic.
I stand ready to assist in any way. If you have any questions, please feel free to call.
Gene Forte (See attachments to FAX)