If you recall our earlier article on Mike and Mary Lind, you will recall the court date was changed. It is now actually going to court, and we would like to encourage anyone who is able to attend the court to do so. Here is the update folowed by our original notice:
The preliminary hearing for Mike and Mary Lind is scheduled for 1:00 on January 21 at the Gainesville court house. They are being charged with Tampering With a Judicial Officer ( 565.084 RSMo ) which is a class C felony. Thomas W. Cline, the Prosecuting Attorney of Ozark County, is claiming that the Linds’ filing of two lawsuits against him for his engagement in false imprisonment, malicious prosecution and abuse of process is conduct reasonably calculated to harass him. Cline alleges that he was acting in his official capacity as Ozark County Prosecuting Attorney and is immune, however, when a prosecuting attorney acts outside of his official capacity then he is no longer immune and can be sued. The Linds’ lawsuits were brought forward because Cline was not acting in his official capacity when he committed these torts. A sizable attendance at this hearing will help show our public officials (servants) that they are accountable to the law just as we the people are.
Mike and Mary Lind of Ozark County, Missouri filed a lawsuit in Ozark County Circuit Court against Thomas W. Cline, the Prosecuting Attorney of Ozark County, along with several other county officials and other private parties in 2010. The claims against Cline were False Imprisonment, Malicious Prosecution and Abuse of Process for his acting outside the scope of the authority of his office. According to the Linds, when an elected official acts outside of the scope of their office, they are without immunity from suits against them for that action. This case is now in Howell County because the Linds requested a venue change in an effort to get a better chance at a fair trial. In this case, the Linds are being represented by a Kansas City area Civil Rights attorney.
On January 14,2013 the Linds filed another lawsuit in Ozark County Circuit Court against Thomas W. Cline, the Prosecuting Attorney of Ozark County, a few other county officials and one private party. The claims in this suit are for Slander of Title and Title 42, Section 1983 Civil rights violation. According to the Linds all of the charges filed by the Lind’s are related to actions taken by public officials to disposess them of the property they have possessed for 10 years.
Then, on October 8,2013, Special Prosecuting Attorney Linda Mckinney of Ozark County filed felony criminal complaints against both Mike and Mary under RSMo 565.084 for “Tampering With a Judicial Officer”. The charges are levied against them because they filed suit against the Prosecuting Attorney of Ozark County for stepping outside of his scope of office in the issues regarding their property. The maximum punishment for the charges being brought against the Lind’s is 7 years in prison. Special Prosecuting Attorney Mckinney is taking this action on behalf of Cline who is the judicial officer alleged to have been harassed by the Linds.
The lawsuit filed by the Linds in January of this year is the alleged harassment. Ozark County stated the reason for the charges against Mike and Mary is based upon multiple lawsuits having been filed against Cline on the same subject matter. The Linds completely disagree and state that the second suit and the first suit, while both stemming from actions on Cline and others part regarding their property, are actually separate actionable offenses.
Mary Lind says, “At issue here is nothing less than an individual’s right to get redress in court when elected officials overstep their authority. If they can put you in prison for standing up for the proper role of elected officials, we have lost all accountability in government.”
When asked if they had harassed Cline by suit, Mary said, “That allegation is absolutely false. Cline stated he wasn’t even aware we had filed suit until May of this year. How could we possibly be harassing him if he wasn’t even aware of our actions? We have in no way harassed Cline.”
The Linds would appreciate people coming to the Preliminary Hearing, for the felony charges, at the Gainesville Courthouse on January 21st, 2014 at 1:00pm to show support. Mary Lind says, “We need to let our public officials know, including judicial officers, that the people have a constitutional right to bring suit against anyone who is acting outside the authority of their office, without being illegally harassed for holding those officials accountable.”
(Please note the court date has changes as Special Prosecuting Attorney Mckinney asked for a continuance. The need for our presence at the court to support the Linds has not changed!)