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Jessica Garrison's $3.5-million Default is Based on Sworn Testimony from Her and Luther Strange, but Docket Shows a Damages Hearing Never Took Place

Posted on the 06 February 2017 by Rogershuler @RogerShuler

Jessica Garrison's $3.5-million default is based on sworn testimony from her and Luther Strange, but docket shows a damages hearing never took place

Jessica Medeiros Garrison and Luther Strange

A $3.5-million award for Alabama GOP operative Jessica Medeiros Garrison against yours truly and the Legal Schnauzer blog, according to court documents, is based on sworn testimony from Garrison and Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange at a default-judgment damages hearing, for which I did not receive notice.
We recently received a copy of the docket in Garrison's defamation case as part of the proceedings in our ongoing federal lawsuit over the wrongful foreclosure on our home of 25 years in Birmingham -- we call that "The House Case," along with a second pending federal case we call "The Jail Case," related to my unlawful five-month incarceration in Shelby County and related issues.
Guess what the docket shows in the Garrison defamation case? It shows that the testimony from her and Strange never took place. Yep, the docket makes no mention of a damages hearing, upon which Jefferson County Circuit Judge Don Blankenship based his multimillion-dollar award, and it makes no mention of testimony from Garrison or Strange at all -- that I can find. In other words, according to the docket, Garrison's hefty award is based on . . . well, absolutely nothing.
To be clear, this doesn't even include the fact that Garrison's judgment is void because I did not receive three days' notice of her default application and hearing, as required by Alabama law. I know, for a fact, that I never received such notice, and the docket indicates Garrison never even sent it. As a nullity, Garrison's judgment violates principles of due process and can be attacked and declared void at any time. You can rest assured that it will be attacked as such quite soon. (The docket and transcript from the Strange/Garrison testimony is embedded at the end of this post.)
Yes, you can view the Strange/Garrison transcript at the end of this point, but we are left with this glaring question: Is the transcript real? Did such a hearing take place?
Strange and Garrison claim that my reporting on their extramarital affair is false and defamatory. But it never has been found false and defamatory by a jury, as required by decades of First Amendment law, because there was no trial (jury or otherwise) in the Garrison case.
I'm hardly alone in reporting, or speaking out publicly, about the Strange/Garrison affair. Former Alabama Senate President Lowell Barron spoke about it last year on a Web-radio broadcast and said the subject is so sensitive that it affects the way Strange can do his job. Is Jessica Garrison going to sue Lowell Barron? Doesn't look like it. Is that because she knows Barron's statements are true? A reasonable person certainly could answer yes.
As for the transcript of the damages hearing, it is dated March 19, 2015. When you check that date in the docket, you find . . . nothing. According to the docket, nothing took place in the action on that date. In fact, I can't find a reference to a damages hearing, or testimony from Strange and Garrison, anywhere.

Jessica Garrison's $3.5-million default is based on sworn testimony from her and Luther Strange, but docket shows a damages hearing never took place

Lowell Barron

I'm not a lawyer, of course, but I think it's pretty well understood among "The Great Unwashed" that court dockets are important documents. They are supposed to provide an accurate record of everything that takes place in a court case.
The records below seem to show two versions of what could have happened: (1) No damages hearing took place, and Strange and Garrison did not testify, meaning there are no grounds for the judgment against me; (2) Someone made a mistake, suggesting the Jefferson County Courthouse staff can't keep track of their own cases. I've had a $3.5-million judgment hanging over my head, issued by a court that apparently is infected with gross incompetence.
How can such a judgment stand? My answer is, "It can't, especially when it's void anyway."
That's one of numerous questions that the docket and Strange/Garrison transcript raise. We will be addressing others in upcoming posts.
(To be continued)
Garrison-strange, testimony in default hearing by Roger Shuler on Scribd
Garrison-strange, docket by Roger Shuler on Scribd

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