by Travis Mateer
Before getting to the mugshots of the alleged exploiters of minors for sexual gratification, and the question why only 4 of the 6 were published by the Missoulian, I want to time-travel back to 2011 when a younger T.J. McDermott and Guy Baker were tracking crimes against Montana children.
First off, wow, nice picture guys!
Second, notice the article is penned by Gwen Florio, who must have REALLY been longing for the fictional writing career she has now. Why do I say that? Just read how this article begins:
The 14-year-old “girl” gets all the glory.
You know the one. She chats online and seemingly has no problem talking dirty with men twice, three times her age. She even wants to meet them for something more than talk.
Except that when the guy in question shows up, he finds out the teenager with whom he intends to have sex is actually a Missoula cop.
It makes for good reading, not to mention a near-guaranteed conviction in court.
But such cases comprise only part of the work – arguably the easier part – done by Montana’s Internet Crimes Against Children task force.
The one guy I’m not familiar with, pictured in the cheerleading piece by Gwen Florio, is Chris Shermer. So I did the usual thing and fell down quite a rabbit hole, which began with this blog post by Crystal L Cox. Wow!
I definitely suggest a good perusal of that one. Then consider thanking Crystal L. Cox for helping those who might be forgetful that the first amendment is so kick ass, it even protects bloggers! Forgive the link going to a Huffington Post post, the original AP link doesn’t work.
Crystal L. Cox, a blogger from Eureka, Mont., now living in Port Townshend, Wash., was sued for defamation by Bend attorney Kevin Padrick and his company, Obsidian Finance Group LLC, after she made posts on several websites she created accusing them of fraud, corruption, money-laundering and other illegal activities. The appeals court noted Padrick and Obsidian were hired by Summit Accommodators to advise them before filing for bankruptcy, and that the U.S. Bankruptcy Court later appointed Padrick trustee in the Chapter 11 case. The court added that Summit had defrauded investors in its real estate operations through a Ponzi scheme.
A jury in 2011 had awarded Padrick and Obsidian $2.5 million.
“Because Cox’s blog post addressed a matter of public concern, even assuming that Gertz is limited to such speech, the district court should have instructed the jury that it could not find Cox liable for defamation unless it found that she acted negligently,” judge Andrew D. Hurwitz wrote. “We hold that liability for a defamatory blog post involving a matter of public concern cannot be imposed without proof of fault and actual damages.”
The appeals court upheld rulings by the District Court that other posts by Cox were constitutionally protected opinion.
Ok, pulling out of THAT rabbit hole, let’s take a look at the Missoulian article about the SIX people just busted for sexually exploiting minors.
If you’re a Sheriff beleaguered by a blogger who doesn’t know his place, it must be nice to have your sex crime fighters make time for a productive visit from the other side of the state.
Here is the part of the article that caught my attention. I’ll note it was at the BOTTOM of the article (emphasis mine):
The press release stated the task force is composed of law enforcement agents from various jurisdictions in Montana, along with federal officers.
“This is the first time in recent years that the task force has focused their efforts in Missoula,” it read. “The Task Force is focusing their efforts throughout Montana in areas where there is a concentrated population base.”
My first question is WHY is it the first time in recent years (plural) that this task force is focusing some sex crime fighting energy on Missoula?
My second question is this: who would like to know where a task force like this is NOT operating?
Things that make me go HMMMMM….
As for those mugshots, I think the reason the Missoulian only ran 4 of the 6 is because, maybe, they didn’t realize the other two could be found under “releases”. Here they are.
It’s nice our outgoing Sheriff and former sex-crime fighter has this figurative send-off to cap an impressive span of Sheriff’ing, something he’ll be discussing next week.
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One of the four who were named, was released without posting bond.
Chris Schumer as a Brady cop he was working here in the sex crimes unit and he went to Billings pretended to be a police officer there that had authority and was busted because I pointed it out he got the job as chief of police in Conrad Montana until I contacted the Conrad Town council and quickly got him fired because he didn’t talk about the fact that he’s a Brady cop
He’s a piece of s*** who wouldn’t even investigate when I told him my daughter was being pursued by an adult male set a case right in their lap with a guy named Harley Davidson
Chris Schumer just ignored me as most police in this town do that’s how bad their hatred is they’ll even turn a rape case into nothing when they could turn it into something when it involves my family
You might want to dig into the Conrad chief of police job that he lost it tells a lot about Mr Shermer