Kent Markus, the bearded man who will sink Ted Strickland's campaign
The story is exploding!
Former State Highway Patrol superintendents say the agency’s reputation for independent, nonpolitical law enforcement is being tarnished by interference from political appointees.
Seven of the eight living retired colonels who led the patrol from 1965 to 2009 have united to send their message to troopers, state leaders and Ohioans via a new Web site: troopertotrooper.com.
Secrecy surrounding the selection of a new superintendent, failure to investigate a case of “obvious fraud” by a state contractor and the scuttling of a planned sting at the Governor’s Residence prompted the ex-colonels to go public with their concerns.
“These concerns confirmed our suspicions that the long and corrupting tentacles of political interference at the operational levels and inner workings of the patrol had finally taken root,” said Thomas W. Rice, superintendent from 1989 to 1994.
The ex-colonels led the patrol for more than half of its existence, since troopers first were dispatched to Ohio’s roads in 1933.
They say that the patrol is being micromanaged and subjected to “external meddling” — the likes of which they never experienced under any governor, Democrat or Republican.[...]
Dicken and his boss, Public Safety Director Cathy Collins-Taylor, have refused to speak with The Dispatch since his appointment was announced on Dec. 23. They again declined to be interviewed, but the Public Safety Department provided a statement.
“Part of the problems and issues has been conflicts between the patrol and other divisions, or management of the department. Those conflicts no longer exist. We’ve moved past the issues that created them and because of that, do not believe it’s appropriate to continue to re-hash them publicly.”
Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland said he has confidence that Dicken and Collins-Taylor, who was appointed in September, can lead the patrol beyond the “turf wars” between ousted Public Safety Director Henry Guzman and former Col. Richard H. Collins, who is not related to Collins-Taylor.[...]
The former No. 1 and No. 2 patrol leaders trace problems to Strickland’s 2007 appointment of Guzman and the team he assembled.
“All of a sudden, we needed to be fixed. It was a daily thing. It is a daily thing,” said William Costas, who retired last month as a lieutenant colonel.
From promotions to discipline of troopers to restricting patrol leaders’ contact with legislators, Collins said he regularly clashed with Guzman, assistant director George Maier and department lawyer Joshua Engel.
Public Safety adopted a policy forbidding patrol investigators from consulting prosecutors or conducting criminal probes of state Public Safety workers unless authorized by the department director or Kent Markus, Strickland’s chief lawyer.
Read more here.
You should remember the Henry Guzman name from the corruption and incompetence that lead to thousands of illegal aliens being given drivers licenses and plates.
Gov. Strickland’s political appointees having this much control over an investigation is scandalous, and is another sign of Ted’s poor leadership. And how ridiculous is it to tip off criminals prior to drug raids?
On top of Strickland’s incompetence, all fingers in this case are clearly pointing at Kent Markus, Strickland’s Harvard-trained lawyer. Kent, a far-left kook, started as Lee Fisher’s chief counsel in the Attorney General’s office until Lee lost to Betty Montgomery in 1994. Then, he worked as US Attorney General Janet Reno’s Chief of Staff at the Justice Department.
After that, he joined the faculty of Capital University Law School and ran an adoption legal center funded by the late-Dave Thomas of Wendy’s. He was well known to be a jerk as a professor, and frequently would play politics with the adoption center- For example, he would frequently “forget” to tell then-Rep. Deb Pryce or Betty Montgomery when meetings were, even though they were both on the board. The stories about his general douchebaggery are endless.
And this is from Joe Hallett’s column from June 14, 2009, involving pressure Markus put on disgraced former Ohio Lottery Director Dolan to LIE about how the Intralot contracts were rigged:
For example, if our fishing crew could get Ohio Lottery Director Michael A. Dolan and Kent Markus, Gov. Ted Strickland’s chief legal counsel, into one of our boats, we would ask a simple question: Which of you is lying?
A year ago, Dolan persuaded Ohio lawmakers to buy $11.6 million worth of equipment to launch the state’s Keno game. Dolan later testified in court that he knew when he appeared before lawmakers that the lottery planned to change vendors and the new one likely wouldn’t be able to use the new equipment.
Dolan told The Dispatch he was instructed by Markus not to tell lawmakers the state was switching lottery vendors. Markus said that’s not true. The new lottery contract smells fishy; state Inspector General Thomas P. Charles ought to dive in.
Kent was at the center of the drivers license issue, he totally screwed up the Racetrack/VLT issue which Strickland was going to use to fill holes in the state budget, was involved in corruption at the Ohio Lottery… And now it appears he is practicing a HIGHLY UNETHICAL and illegal form of heavy handed politics on Ted’s behalf in regards to criminal investigations.
There is so much more to this story and it is already a nightmare for Gov. Ted Strickland. Stay tuned!