Dealing With The Devil, Or Playing Russian Roulette With The Justice System?

An Outsider's View Of The Legal Escapades Of Michael Morrison

June 20, 2015
"The minute you read something that you can't understand, you can almost be sure that it was drawn up by a lawyer." - Will Rogers


If you are a long time reader of VolusiaExposed, you may be aware of the October 2012 shooting of Michael Morrison, by the Holly Hill Police Department.

VolusiaExposed has our own theory about the cause of the Morrison shooting. In short, we believe the evidence suggests, that it was an accidental police shooting, that has been sustained by authorities, as a legitimate use of deadly force. (Police Misconduct?)

In order to have a full appreciation of the probable misconduct transpiring within the Morrison arrest & prosecution (our opinion) - our readers are encouraged to review our below linked earlier articles on the Morrison affair.

Article 1

Article 2

Article 3

Article 4

Out Of The Blue ~ Neil Young

Law Enforcement's Agenda,
And Their Misconduct

Law Enforcement officials (police & State Attorney) accounts seem to support their belief that in the very early morning hours of October 22, 2012 - Michael Morrison, on more than one ocassion, pointed a hand gun at three persons, to include two police officers (HHPD Cpl. Armstrong & DBPD Ofc. Kelley).

The police officers had arrived at Morrison's Holly Hill home in order to arrest him for an alleged earlier domestic violence incident involving his on again, off again, motorcycle companion, Leah Mays (the third person that allegedly Morrison pointed a handgun at).

When Morrison did not respond to Mays', Armstrong's and Kelley's presence outside his home - Ms. Mays convinced the police officers (Armstrong and Kelley) that she lived there - thereby possessing legal entry rights to Morrison's home. (see page 2 - paragraph 1 of police report)

HOWEVER, if the police report is correct, it would appear that Ms. Mays was misleading the officers regarding her residence status within the Morrison home. Ms. Mays has a rather extensive arrest record - therefore, she was well known to these particular officers. They should have known, based on her recent arrest reports, that Morrison's home address was not her residence of record. Also, court records tend to support that Mays has a past history with at least one of these officers, of providing less than truthful statements.

Further, according to a statement written by Mays to Judge Marriott - she had been transported by one of the officers, from her apartment, to Morrison's home. Therefore, it appears that the officers knew that Morrison's home was not her (Mays) residence. Obviously, there is a bigger point to be made here. If the police officers were being "less than truthful" regarding their knowledge of Ms. Mays' residence - were they being "less than truthful" about other details, ie. - whether Morrison actually pointed a gun at them?

Regardless of the above listed evidence and facts, the officers encouraged Ms. Mays to break a window in order to gain access to the Morrison home (see police and FDLE reports). Mr. Morrison has advised VolusiaExposed that during that time period (October 2012), he maintained a hidden house key on the property. The fact that Ms. Mays had to break a window in her attempt to gain entry into his home, only goes to further support that she did NOT reside within the Holly Hill home.

Officer & Prosecutorial Misconduct?

In our opinion, Officers Armstrong and Kelley should have questioned Mays' legal access to the Morrison home, as soon as she advised them that she needed to break a window. Instead, and as supported by both the police report and the FDLE shooting investigation, they (Armstrong and Kelley) encouraged Mays' actions of breaking the window.

At that instant (breaking of the window) - did Mays commit the criminal act of burglary, or attempted home invasion, as an agent of her co-conspirators, Police officers Matt Armstrong and Dale Kelley?

Cpl Armstrong resigned from the Holly Hill PD within a year of the shooting, and FDLE records indicates that he is not working in law enforcement within the State of Florida. Morrison has advised VolusiaExposed.Com that the State Attorney's office has RECENTLY informed him that Armstrong's departure from HHPD was connected to his involvement in the shooting incident. HOWEVER, VolusiaExposed.Com has not been able to independently confirm this. Although, if true (rationale for Armstrong's departure from HHPD), the State Attorney's Office may have a possible Brady violation (failure to disclose exculpatory evidence to defendant) pending against them. Officer Kelley is currently a criminal investigator within the Daytona Beach PD.

Does Our Local State Attorney's Office Provide "Cover" For Questionable Officer Involved Shootings?

Given the State's recently offered plea bargains to Morrison (discussed below), and given the questions and exculpatory evidence attached to the Morrison shooting (discussed in our earlier articles) - VolusiaExposed.Com ponders whether our local State Attorney's Office (Florida 7th Judicial Circuit) has similar ethical issues that are alleged to be currently transpiring within the Palm Beach County State Attorney's office (Florida 15th Judicial Circuit)?

VolusiaExposed.Com encourages our readers to review the attached WPTV / Palm Beach Post joint investigation into allegations that the Palm Beach State Attorney's office ignored police misconduct regarding officer involved shootings (see above - right of page).

The Morrison shooting transpired over two and half years ago - so why now would the State Attorney be offering Morrison such sweet plea bargains? Last April (2015), and just prior to Morrison's attorney, David Damore's departure as his attorney - the State offered Morrison the following plea bargain - to drop the felony battery on a law enforcement officer, to misdemeanor battery on a law enforcement officer, a finding of adjudication, with six (6) months probation.

In the most recent court hearing (June 10, 2015), and while Morrison had no legal representation, the State Attorney sweetened the plea bargain deal by removing the probation and adjudication requirements. Absent, the case being dropped by the State, VolusiaExposed can not imagine a better plea bargain. Our only question is - why would the State offer such a sweet plea bargain, to a man they supposedly believe pointed a gun at three individuals, two being police officers?

Based on VolusiaExposed.Com's past feedback from our readers, we believe that a large section of our readers have a law enforcement background. Therefore, we suspect that many of our readers would find the answers to the above questions, as interesting as we (VolusiaExposed) would.

The 2016 Campaign Cycle Has Started
Does Politics Trump Justice?

Many of our readers will recall how State Attorney R.J. Larizza secured his office during the 2008 election cycle.

The then (2008) State Attorney John Tanner had criminally investigated several correctional and law enforcement officers regarding the March 2005 arrest of Tanner's daughter, Lisa Tanner, by the Flagler Beach PD. (See Attached Media Article For Particulars Regarding The Lisa Tanner Arrest Scandal -->)

The publicity over Tanner's investigations of the Flagler County jail, and the Flagler Beach officer reached the national level of being folly on at least one of the television networks morning shows.

In the opinion of many, Tanner's investigations, lost him the support of the local law enforcement community, and this was one of the leading factors of why he lost his re-election bid to Larizza (current State Attorney).

VolusiaExposed.Com agrees with the thought that it is very probable that Tanner lost his re-election bid, because he touched the political third rail within the State Attorney's office - failing to unquestionably back local law enforcement.

With little doubt, Larizza was able to ride Tanner's wave of bad publicity, right into the Office of State Attorney.

Given the above, is it possible, maybe even probable, that Larizza does not wish to repeat Tanner's mistake of touching the State Attorney's office's political third rail?

Could it be that Larizza intends to follow the (alleged) lead of the 15th Judicial Circuit's State Attorney, by backing officer involved shootings - regardless of what the evidence will support, in order to placate the law enforcement vote?

Just one problem plagues Larizza in the Morrison case - Morrison actually wants a trial - and not a plea bargain.

Click Below Image
To Review Media Article

Morrison's insistence for a trial, causes yet another problem for law enforcement authorities. A trial may produce a result not favorable to the police, or State Attorney's office, especially given recent nationwide incidents regarding the application of deadly force by the police.

While the Morrison shooting incident lacks any video footage of the incident - the case is littered with exculpatory evidence that supports an alternative theory of what transpired - beyond the allegation that Morrison pointed a handgun at three people, two being police officers (click inclusive Daytona Beach News Journal article) .

As stated previously, the evidence, and our alternative theory, are discussed in our earlier articles. (see web links - top of page)

Why No Criminal Charge For Allegedly Pointing A Handgun At Ms. Leah Mays?

According to both the above Daytona Beach News Journal article, and the FDLE shooting investigation page 3 - last paragraph not only is there a criminal allegation that Morrison pointed a handgun at the two police officers, but during the very same event, Morrison is alleged to have pointed the very same hand gun at Ms. Leah Mays. Since Mays is NOT a law enforcement officer - Morrison's alleged aggravated battery against her is NOT covered in the aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer charge.

So why isn't the State Attorney concerned about alleged crimes against Ms. Leah Mays? Could it be that she has a rather extensive arrest history - and let's face it - she has very little, if any, political clout? While the police officers, and their collective peers, and unions, wield much political clout - as was seen during the 2008 election of State Attorney R.J. Larizza.

Further, the State Attorney has recently (May 2015) dropped the domestic violence charge against Morrison, whereas Mays was the alleged victim. This being the very same alleged domestic violence incident that brought the police to Morrison's front door in the early morning hours of October 22, 2012.

Does A Conspiracy Exist To Coerce Morrison Into Accepting A Plea Bargain?

Much to the obvious dislike of the Judge Marriott, the prosecutor, and defense attorney Dave Damore (our opinion - watch attached April 15th & 20th videos - see below), Morrison declined the April 20th plea deal.

Judge Marriott granted, against the expressed wishes of Morrison, Damore's Motion to Withdraw as Morrison's attorney. The rationale for Damore's withdrawal (voice by both Damore and Marriott) was the probable filing of a 3.850 motion against Damore by Morrison.

During the April 20th hearing (watch attached video - see below) - Morrison stated that he had no idea what a 3.850 motion was - Judge Marriott advised Morrison that it equated to being an "ineffective counsel" motion. (3.850 motions cover a range of issues beyond "ineffective counsel" - we found it significant how Judge Marriott defined Damore's motion to withdraw)

So apparently, both Judge Marriott and Attorney Damore were expressing a concern, that if Damore remained on as Morrison's attorney, and Morrison was convicted - that Morrison could appeal the conviction by filing a 3.850 motion alleging that Damore was ineffective counsel. (IMPORTANT CONCEPT - Why? - Read On - It Will Present Itself)

Michael Morrison's April 15, 2015 Pre-Trial Hearing
Judge Frank Marriott

Attorney Damore Agrees To Stay On As Morrison's Attorney - IF Morrison
Would Accept The Plea Bargain

As is already highlighted in one of our early articles - during the April 20th hearing - and immediately after Damore had secured his Motion to Withdraw from Judge Marriott - Damore advised Morrison that he would still represent him, IF Morrison would take the plea bargain.

Imagine that - after all that alleged concern, the Court, and Damore had about a possible 3.850 motion being filed by Morrison - Damore is willing to again become Morrison's attorney of record, IF he will accept the plea bargain.

It quickly became our (VolusiaExposed.Com) opinion that the Court, State Attorney, and sadly Morrison's own attorney appeared to be conspiring, in order to coerce Morrison into accepting a plea bargain.

Michael Morrison's April 20, 2015 Pre-Trial Hearing
Judge Frank Marriott

Medical Toll On Morrison

As documented in a Daytona Beach News Journal article, due to health concerns, several of Morrison's friends encouraged him to take the plea bargain. However, prior to Damore being able to reapproach Judge Marriot to arrange some sort of plea agreement - Morrison collapsed and had to be taken by ambulance to the hospital.

The end result of the April 20th hearing was that Morrison did not accept the plea bargain - and another court date was scheduled for June 9, 2015.

Morrison informed VolusiaExposed.Com, that Damore did keep in email contact with him, in which Damore continued to encourage Morrison to accept the plea bargain. However, even with the additional encouragement from Damore, Morrison opted not to accept the sweetened plea bargain offered to him during the June 9-10th hearings.

Michael Morrison's June 10, 2015
Pre-Trial Hearing
Part 1 of 2
Judge Frank Marriott

Did Judge Marriott Modify His Rationale For Attorney Damore's Withdraw?

Earlier in this article, we covered the April 20th withdrawal of Attorney David Damore as Morrison's attorney. During the April 20th hearing, the given rationale for granting Damore's departure was the possible filing of a 3.850 motion (ineffective counsel) by Morrison, against Damore.

However, we invite you to review the June 10, 2015 hearing video - Did Judge Marriott indicate that Damore's departure was due to the fact that Morrison would not accept the plea bargain?
(Judge Marriott - "thats because you won't take advice - no lawyer in the world would advise you not to take that deal.")

If so, then VolusiaExposed submits that this only further supports our opinion that Damore's withdraw was an attempt to coerce Morrison into accepting a plea bargain.

Michael Morrison's June 10, 2015
Pre-Trial Hearing
Part 2 of 2
Judge Frank Marriott

Stand by to stand by - there is certainly more to come as this case continues to unfold. As it does, VolusiaExposed.Com will surely be on top of it.

We look forward to your comments on this situation.
Drop us a line to let us know what you think.