By | June 30, 2020

Since the sudden resignation of former Chief Judge Randy Pool, allegations of further misconduct have continued to surface. Many of the known victims are currently reluctant to reveal their stories or seek assistance in making any attempts to seek legal recourse for Judge Pool’s often retaliatory conduct. Judge Pool seemingly punished these other victims in ongoing court cases in which these women were involved. According to victims who have spoken confidentially about this matter, the basis for their reluctance is that they fear being prosecuted after learning that District Attorney Ted Bell opted to charge the first victim to come forward to publicly disclose Judge Pool’s misconduct with extortion.

As the community continues to wait for the ongoing investigations by the SBI, FBI, and Judicial Standards Commission – the existence of which Mr. Bell identified in his motion to prevent disclosure of all damaging information regarding Judge Pool’s misconduct to the public while prosecuting the first victim mentioned above – Judge Pool’s position on the bench remains vacant.

Since the end of Judge Pool’s tenure as the Chief Judge of District 29A, Governor Cooper has appointed numerous other judges to fill judicial vacancies in other districts across the state. While the delay in filling former Judge Pool’s position is unclear, information as the front-runner replacement candidate, Michelle McEntire, has begun to surface that raises concerns as to her possible appointment to the bench.

Although it will likely be necessary to await the outcomes of the ongoing state and federal investigations before fully understanding the damage created by Judge Pool’s actions, it is already known from the women who have been willing to speak confidentially that there are, at a minimum, dozens of other victims, many of whom were punished by Judge Pool in their cases pending before him in the event they failed to acquiesce in his solicitations.

Those who were complicit, often received favorable legal rulings at the expense of the opposing parties. It now appears that Ms. McEntire represented one of the women affected by Judge Pool’s misconduct, yet took no actions to help her client or to take any other actions to report or stop Judge Pool from continuing to harm those appearing before him based on their decision of whether to comply with his sexual demands.

Given the severity of the harm done to the people in this community by an elected judge, as well as the elected district attorney Ted Bell’s refusal to take any actions against former Judge Pool, it has become increasingly clear that lifting the silence and secrecy surrounding these issues is the only meaningful way to address these and other problems present in our local government. Despite multiple other victims coming forward to publicly relay their stories – with one such victim also being threatened by former Judge Pool that he would have her charged with extortion in the exact same fashion as the victim Mr. Bell is currently charging, it is critical that the people of District 29A know if any of the current candidates to replace former Judge Pool had any involvement in, or knowledge of, the judge’s actions. Further, any information suggesting other issues that could further damage the people of Rutherford and McDowell Counties should be known by the Governor in making his appointment to the judge’s seat.

On June 2, 2020, Ms. McEntire filed a Verified Rule 60 Motion in a case involving her client (the name and case information will not be provided in this article given the concerns that many of the victims of expressed), which is a legal mechanism to seek relief from a previous court order that was wrongfully entered by the court. In Ms. McEntire’s motion, she acknowledges that she was informed that Judge Pool was soliciting sexual favors from her client’s grandmother in early 2020. In response, Ms. McEntire represents that she spoke with her client about this information and that her client did, in fact, confirm that Judge Pool was engaging in sexual communications with the client’s grandmother who was hostile to the client’s position in the ongoing case.

Ms. McEntire then concludes that “rather than recusing himself, Judge Pool made rulings in the case without disclosing his personal involvement with people involved in the most essential allegations of the petition.” This case ended with an adverse ruling against Ms. McEntire’s client – a predictable outcome given that the grandmother who was adverse to the client’s position complied with Judge Pool’s advances.

While this client should have this case reviewed, the timing of Ms. McEntire’s motion is a concerning for a number of reasons:

  • First, although she expressly acknowledges confirming with her client that Judge Pool was engaging in misconduct with the grandmother, Ms. McEntire’s motion contains no representations that Ms. McEntire took any actions to help her client after verifying this information. Rather, she directs the blame at Judge Pool for not voluntarily disclosing his own misconduct, despite not even raising the issue in open court or in any court filing prior to the Rule 60 Motion.
  • Second, although she learned of Judge Pool’s actions that adversely affected her client’s case in such a way that the client’s rights regarding her children were harmed, Ms. McEntire waited until June 2, 2020 to take any actions admitting to verifying Judge Pool’s misconduct with a witness adverse to her own client’s position.
  • Third, Ms. McEntire provided no indication that she reported Judge Pool’s conduct to disciplinary agencies or law enforcement.

In fact, despite Ms. McEntire’s employment as an assistant district attorney and relationship with Mr. Bell, Mr. Bell continues refusing to charge Judge Pool for any of the actions involved with the victims that have come forward in hopes of ensuring the corruption of public officials in this district will not continue to harm others.

The concerns regarding Ms. McEntire’s potential appointment to Judge Pool’s seat do not end with her passive facilitation of Judge Pool’s predatory behavior toward the women of this community. While serving as the assistant district attorney to Mr. Bell, Ms. McEntire took actions that systematically harmed the African-American community in District 29A.

In May 2013, Darian Mosley, an African American man, was charged with the death of his girlfriend, a white female. On May 24, 2016, Mr. Mosely was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to at least twenty (20) years in prison. Ms. McEntire’s prosecution of the case generated significant media backlash and active protests in McDowell County for what many viewed as an unfair trial.

As but a few examples, a civil rights group, True Healing Under God, and Mr. Mosely’s family expressed outrage at the selection of an all-white jury, some of whom were seen sleeping during the trial.

Several spectators recalled that the judge personally knew at least one of the jurors and had ties with the juror’s family. This juror was seen winking at the family of the victim during the trial.

Others attending the protests recounted that Ms. McEntire distorted and misrepresented evidence. In late 2017, Mr. Mosely’s sentence was reduced to 13 years after successfully seeking recourse with the North Carolina Court of Appeals.

In 2017, Ms. McEntire on behalf Mr. Bell’s office, charged an African American man named Curtis O’Neil Logan with assault on a white female, assault inflicting serious injury constituting habitual misdemeanor assault, and attaining habitual felon status. Based on Ms. McEntire’s designation of Mr. Logan as a habitual felon, Ms. McEntire offered a plea deal whereby all of the charges would be consolidated into one Class D felony for which Mr. Logan would be sentenced to a term of 60 to 84 months, which Mr. Logan accepted.

Contrary to Ms. McEntire’s designation of Mr. Logan as a habitual felon, which drastically increases the length of active prison time for the charges at issues, there was no legal basis to support charging him as a habitual felon.

After Mr. Logan realized that Ms. McEntire had wrongly charged him as a habitual felon, Mr. Logan notified the district attorney’s office, which refused to correct the injustice that would have resulted in him remaining incarcerated far longer than legally permissible.

In fact, Mr. Logan filed an appeal identifying these unlawful actions and Mr. Bell, again, failed to afford Mr. Logan the right to be treated fairly and in accordance with the law. Nearly three years after being incarcerated for what the district attorney’s office knew was an unlawful categorization of Mr. Logan as a habitual felon, an agency operating outside of this district finally intervened, resulting in the termination of Mr. Logan’s incarceration.

In December 2016, Mr. Bell’s office obtained a grand jury indictment against another African American male, Derrick Maurice Berry, for first-degree forcible sex offense, attempted first-degree forcible rape, assault inflicting serious bodily injury and attempted first-degree murder against a white victim. Ms. McEntire was the prosecutor responsible for trying the case, which was set to begin on Monday, August 13, 2018.

On the preceding Friday, shortly before the close of business, however, Ms. McEntire filed a motion seeking to introduce otherwise inadmissible evidence due to a meeting she had just conducted with the victim where, according to Ms. McEntire, the victim no longer remembered the allegations against Mr. Berry with the level of detail as the days following the alleged incident.

In doing so, Ms. McEntire refused to produce any information from the interview she acknowledged holding with the victim, as well as other exculpatory evidence that had been withheld from Mr. Berry when Ms. McEntire produced discovery to defense counsel. If her efforts had been successful, Mr. Berry would have been deprived of critical evidence to his defense and would have been unable to mount a meaningful defense to the claims against him. Mr. Berry’s counsel forcefully responded with a motion for, among other things, sanctions. Mr. Berry’s counsel was successful in preventing Ms. McEntire from withholding this information and, immediately thereafter Ms. McEntire left her position at the district attorney’s office.

In light of the damage done to those involved in the judiciary, the destructive impact Judge Pool’s actions have had on the community’s faith in the legal system, and the ongoing racial issues that all hope will result in meaningful change, the community must remain informed about the problems that plague our government and about those seeking to ascend to official positions where those individuals will be the leaders entrusted to address those issues.

25 Replies to “Further Allegations of Misconduct surrounding former judge Randy Pool while State and Federal Investigations Loom”

  1. Veritas

    Anyone else feel like we are all just sitting and watching Ted Bell kneeling on this victims neck trying to choke her out so she can’t talk? In case anyone wasn’t sure why people felt there were no other options than to riot to end corruption and abuse of authority – this is about as good of an example as you can get for what happens when the government stops working for, or responding to, the people. What’s it going to take for to stop this mess?

  2. Jimmy Tate

    He needs to be put away from the county and charged as a regular citizen that has done wrong. Wrong Is wrong no matter who the person is

  3. Anonymous

    Each justice or judge of the United States shall take the following oath or affirmation before performing the duties of his office: “I, ___ ___, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as ___ under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God.” (June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 907; Pub. L. 101–650, title IV, § 404, Dec. 1, 1990, 104 Stat. 5124.)
    Each and every judge when being sworn in , raises his right hand and swears this oath .
    That does not mean that it ends there .

    It means that any citizen can be assured that they will receive a fair and just trial under the laws and statutes that are placed there in order to protect all rights that are endowed by those statues . This does not mean that one can pick and choose which statutes to follow according to backroom deals ,and other atrocities , it means that the law is followed to the letter regardless of race , creed , color ,gender, or religion .

    While it saddens me to see such a travesty , it does not surprise me that this has taken place , as it seems that more and more injustice is being unveiled at an alarming rate . It also brings mistrust to a county of people who may begin to feel that they are no longer safe and secure to testify , much less receive a fair trial , when allegations find them sitting behind bars , or being witness to civil and criminal activity .

    This also makes its more challenging for other Judges , Attorneys , and those who are charged with this kind of responsibility , that do take their oath , statutes , and laws of our state seriously , to not come unfairly under scrutiny . And all of this is simply due to one man who pushed aside his oath , and made up his own selfish rules , regardless of the outcome of those who came before him , expecting a fair and unbiased trial .

    We live in a time that is hard enough , one in which we seek the truth and justice more and more . No one should ever have to worry about coming forward , testifying , or even standing trial , for fear that the person residing over such a thing will toss out truth , and replace it with personal gain . We all lose when that happens .

    For all of those involved in uncovering the truth , and shedding light on what was so insidiously trying to remain hidden , I salute you . For all that continue to serve in the judicial system regardless of its title , follow the statutes , and take your oaths seriously , Thank You .
    They say Man is capable of as much atrocity as he has imagination , and right now I imagine that many have much work to do now .

    I am just glad to know that in 2020 , there are still those that will stand and say , You broke the law , and not even you are above that .

  4. Anonymous

    If this judge rigged the trial with Michelle’s client, why has he not been charged for that????? Am I missing something?

  5. Right all along

    One attorney screamed foul from 2007 onwards. He was ignored by the bar, judicial standards other attorneys and judges. He now gets to say ” I told y’all I was right”. Finally somebody listened. This guy went through hell from pool (intensionally lower case) for years and NEVER backed down. He’s laughing the laugh of Klingon justice– retribution is a desert best served ice cold. May pools retirement be like fog on an August morning, here for a minute then gone forever.

  6. Sd

    Corruption is rampant in this county. Even our churches are corrupt. I was accused of terrible things by church leadership and when I asked for evidence I was told they didn’t need any evidence. Too many lawless fools will ruin everything.

  7. Lena

    Tedd Bell and Randy Pool are not the only corrupt officials. DSS and the the Sheriffs office are pretty close. We have a sheriff who seems to be nothing but a con man, delivering payoffs for misdeeds, abusing Medicaid and funds, even resorting to blackmail. Why? He’s greedy and quite frankly, just not intelligent enough to do his job. The simple people who believed it was the DA’s (Greenway’s) office to issue warrants in the Fenner Case have no grasp of the system at all or this petty, ignorant man wouldn’t have been elected.

  8. if i say i may be jailed

    Deputies on steroids,drunk driving,judges and DA corrupt and lawyers disbarred CPS is ,free to lie in court at will.You cant trust your lawyer your DA or your Judge and now it seems the jury as well.Child support court doesn’t follow any guide lines You cant trust your Health Director to tell the truth .And why do they do it? Why not. Nobody is held reasonable.

  9. Angie Hutchins

    Some one should contact me about my case, I have hours upon hours of video and recorded audio of the court officials and law enforcement, judge Ellen Shelly, Deborah Terrill, Ricky Buchanan. They all had a part of taking MY sick child and giving him to his registered sex offender dad. I had custody of my 5 year old son since birth, and because Jennifer Baird Francis is friends with Debbie Terrell, they pushed through this ex parte and my son has lived with his dad since. It has been almost 8 months and we have sold everything to pay for lawyers, we are losing everything and I AM still waiting! They tried to hide the ex parte with the clerk of courts, they never had it served. I have never been in trouble I have always taken care of my child, I had to go to the court house 5 days after and ask for the paperwork, then go to the sheriff’s department and ask someone to serve it!!! If I hadn’t done that I now know that I would have missed the court date. Oh and they said I wasn’t present for that. I have video of the clerk giving my ex parte to me. I have many sheriff’s deputies who couldn’t find it when they went to look for it. These judges are playing GOD, they are tearing families apart! SOMEONE NEEDS TO STOP THEM!!!!

  10. no

    I predict he resins without any charges and full pensions on taxpayers dime

  11. Drug addict

    The narcotics team will catch you doing wrong and dangle it in your face until you do s they say and then promise to help in court only to lie and go for the throat anyway..they pray on drug addicts to ddo there jobs and they ruin lives and destroy family’s

  12. Anonymous

    It’s a crooked place , that many of us having been saying for years. But you can’t win against the system, regardless how straight and narrow you obey the law.

  13. Anonymous Red

    Anonymous, I feel you and I are on the same page on many topics. I want to point out to our community that we run these towns, our money keeps these crooked officials employed, our votes keep them in office. Votes given by a frightened community who have been enslaved by a judicial system with no bounds. I plan to end this corruption, the only way to do that is one expensive attorney not from here, and an army. By Army, I mean…the people. The people hold the key to ending the corruption that has held us hostage for decades. Judges don’t want to listen…we make them…the state doesn’t want to be held accountable, you make them. They work for us, a simple fact they like to forget and an honor they choose to spit on. You wanna stop corruption, it’s time to speak, it’s time for fear to fall away and the people of McDowell and Rutherford counties to stand together and restructure our broken system. We the people are strong….we the people are unstoppable. God bless America! God bless the Constitution! God bless the people of our community.

  14. Samantha

    My family has been personally harmed by the people under investigation. I called anyone that would listen to try to report what was happening to my father by the hands of this corruption. These people cared more for money than a human life and were willing, at a substantial fee, to not only destroy his life but even went so far as to leave him within inches of loosing it. No one and I mean no one wanted to listen or help. So I am beyond happy that these disgusting people who are supposed to be there to help others used their power for personal gain no caring who they hurt or even tried to killl all the while were untouchable because they were not only above the law they are the ones meant to uphold it.

  15. You know crook

    There’s corruption in spindale police department officers Logan and Thomson but he quit that’s what they saying but he did some illegal stuff. And I have proof about Logan doing illegal stuff like falsifying paper work, harassment, illegal search and seizure. I want it to be known how crooked they is.

  16. Anonymous

    Please research the death of Randy Pools nephew.I don’t remember his name but he was a Drug dealer and their were individuals here in the county held in county jail while the state investigated further. No one was ever charged.

  17. Anonymous

    Wasnt ricky b. Once suspended beccause he was so strung out while working undercover in rutherford. Pools once law partner disbarred for cocaine. How do u combat this if u live in these counties ?

  18. Anonymous

    Randy Poole was a worthless judge, in my opinion.
    He threatened to put me in jail for simply attempting to exercise my right and asking to know who my accusers were due to a bogus charge for open carrying a firearm in forest city n.c. He attempted to lie to me by stating the officer who issued the citation was the witness. Knowing this was a lie, I questioned him and his response was “if you open your mouth again I’ll throw you in jail”. He ignored the motion I had filed to have the charge dropped and through fear and intimidation he made me retain a lawyer.

    I hope he goes to prison!!!

  19. Anonymous

    I I have a story , I could tell. A true one on how crooked they are.

  20. Anonymous

    Judicial and Criminal justice system corruption has ran rampant in McDowell county for years .just ask the citizens in the West Marion community. High up officials and business men have ran drugs though our community for years and our Black men have been set up to take the fall and ended up in prison for years to keep their mouths shut. This is not hearsay I’ve seen it with my own eyes and experienced it within my family. It is about time this corruption is being exposed but it has not touched the top of what has gone on or still is going on.

  21. Casey Upton

    After convicted through Randy Poole and illegally videoed with no warrants through Chad Murray who falsely introduced himself as homeland security in 2013 and also threatened me with 10 to 15 years imprisonment charges if I didn’t work with him, the corruption is still ongoing in surrounding counties. One in particular being polk county. Chad Murray offered me a cell phone and a vehicle to help him sell methamphetamine and, after refusing because I have a wife and kids, threatened me with a life of hell from him and his team. 3 years ago an officer Judd Laughter tried to bribe my wife with money, minutes on her phone and taking traffic tickets off her record if she would buy drugs off a family/friend of ours after she was being followed for 30 min by a Polk county officer named James Cole Weicker from grassy knob rd polk county to baber rd Rutherfordton and feeling violated pulled herself over and asked why she was being followed. officer weicker then called Rutherford county on her and left. Since then we have been under investigation and have been exploited by even the tryon bulletin putting our faces on the 2nd page under the headlines of BIG METH BUST all the while never being caught with any drugs but being harassed and pulled over and searched many times. Dss has opened cases and closed cases. The sunny view elementary school has taken a charge out for an uncapped dirty syringe being found in my daughter’s homework folder at school. They would not show us any needle and let us leave the school with both our children only to arrest us both the next day with child abuse and dwlr not impaired from being seen driving our kids to school. We have since then changed schools and I have encountered a classmate of my daughters experiencing related issues around the same time and they have also changed schools but had no charges arise from it. They are willing to stand beside us in these accusations. We have asked the school, the court, dss, polk county sheriff’s office, and court appointed lawyer Susan parkes for DNA and fingerprints to determine where and who the supposed needle belonged to. The teacher that reported this was also my daughters aunt and we also leased property and are still leasing property from her. Now I have 8 counts of conspiracy my wife has 2 counts of conspiracy and dss has again gotten my children out of school and asked my children about a glass pipe. When arrested Cole weicker and Brad hicks threatened my wife that our kids would be taken away from us if she didn’t tell them what they wanted to hear. Keep in mind we still havent been caught with any drugs ever. And both my children have reported never seeing any drugs in our home. We are battling all of these accusations which is exactly what conspiracy is, people making accusations and pointing fingers. I can’t get a job and even the people in our community are looking down on us and treating us different without even knowing us at all. All of this is still ongoing and we havent been convicted of any of it but they have now combined our child abuse charges and our conspiracies to traffic and sell. If anyone can further us in assistance with trying to fight our corrupt judicial system please contact me. It’s hard to fight alone.

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