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Columbus Municipal Judge Nicole Clinkscales Resigns Planning Commission Board Position

Ron Williams

In the April 19th Columbus Packet, I reported that Columbus Municipal Judge Nicole Clinkscales was in violation of the Mississippi Code of Judicial Conduct by continuing to serve as a board member on the Columbus Planning Commission. On Monday, April 23rd, Clinkscales resigned her position on the board.
During the Columbus City Council meeting Tuesday night, Chief Operations Officer David Armstrong announced that applications would now be accepted for the vacant position on the board.
Clinkscales continued to serve on the board even after she was appointed Municipal Judge back in December 2010, which is in violation of the Code in Section 4C (2) that stated, “A judge shall not accept appointment to a governmental committee or commission or other governmental position that is concerned with issues of fact or policy matters other than the improvement of the law, the legal system or the administration of justice.”
Though the position was an unpaid position, Clinkscales was still involved in making controversial decisions, in particular her motion to grant permission to the New Beginnings Full Gospel Baptist Church to build a new church on residential land off of Highway 69. The church’s congregation own 7.3 acres with access to the property down a narrow, unpaved city road in the middle of several residences.
Clinkscales’ motion and vote in favor to grant permission ended in a tie that sent the decision before the Columbus City Council, which voted unanimously to grant permission to build the church even after several residents living near the proposed church had objections. Several residents told the council that they understand that the church would also open a daycare operation at the church, which was a concern to the residents.
It’s not known if a legal challenge to the building of the church arises, if Clinkscales’ position on the commission could be brought into question. That possibilty remains to be seen.

Leroy Brooks Says He’s “Not Running For Mayor” of Columbus
Last week, after hearing several people in the past month or so tell me that Leroy Brooks was considering running for mayor of Columbus, I reported that tidbit in my column, stating that he might well run. But during last Friday’s Lowndes County Board of Supervisor meeting, Brooks stated, emphatically, that he would not be running. Columbus Mayor Robert Smith was at that meeting, and Brooks didn’t want any misunderstanding, he said. “First, let me make a public announcement…having read The Packet this morning and since the mayor is here, I want to unequivocally, for the last time, say I’m not running for mayor. I don’t want the press to print it anymore, so I want to make this clear. I don’t want any friction created, and I don’t want people bothering me about running. So, I’m not running, so the chief (Joe St John) and Ron is here…so y’alll don’t have to print this anymore.”
The reason I brought it up in the first place was because several sources had told me that Brooks had told them he might run, though it was a few weeks back. I don’t just make this stuff up. With that said, Brooks made it clear…he’s not running! So, there you have it from the horse’s mouth.

Avante’ House Raising Money By Selling Raffle Tickets
Kelly Britton, of The Avante’ House For Ladies, is in the process of selling $5 raffle tickets for a chance to win a 3-day/night vacation at a resort condo in Gulf Shores, Ala.. The Avante’ House was established to get ladies out of primary or secondary treatment or who have been released from jail or prison. The Avante’ House is a structured environment to provide ladies with a safe living environment to strengthen their 12-step recovery program, improve living skills and to grow spiritually so that they can become productive members of society. The facility is a structured home for ladies who want to learn how to stay clean and sober.
If you would like to help these ladies achieve their goals, please buy a raffle ticket. You might just win a nice vacation along the way. You can contact Kelly Britton by visiting her Facebook page, or visiting the Avante’ House Facebook page, or by calling her at 662-574-1768. Or contact Bill Vaughan on his Facebook page. It’s all for a great cause.

Riding For The Holloways Coming Up May 12
A benefit Trail Ride for Angela Russell Holloway will be held on Saturday, May 12 at the home of Tommy and Sharon Sanders on Flower Farm Road in Hamilton, Miss. BBQ plates will be available for $10. Entertainment will be provided by Avenue Rhodes, Nash Creek, Dirt Brothers, Flashpoint, Faze 3, Mark Chandler Band and Mike Cooper. Attendees are encouraged to bring your chairs.
The trail ride will begin at 9 a.m. and can include wagons or horses. The $20 fee includes the BBQ plate. In case of rain, the trail ride will be on May 19. The event includes a Ranch Rodeo at 1 p.m. Tommy Sanders Poker Run will be leaving Becka’s Burgers in Aberdeen at 1 p.m. There will be an auction, door prizes and Jumpers will be available for the little ones. For more information, you can contact Vic or Renee Armstreet at 662-436-2050 or 662-436-2051 or you can contact Chris or Claudia Morgan at 662-574-9924.

Kenneth Montgomery Offers Reward For Info On Shot Fired Near Propst Park

Near T-Ball Fields Where His Grandkids Play Ball
Kenneth Montgomery was running concessions at Propst Park Tuesday night when he heard a gunshot nearby. Security and Columbus Police checked it out but nothing was reportedly found.
But the shooting of a gun, near where Montgomery says his 3 grandchildren play t-ball, is totally unacceptable to him. And a lot of other parents feel the same way. Montgomery is offering a $1000 reward for information leading to the arrest, conviction and jailtime for the person/persons responsible for firing the gun. He’s asking that people come forward if they have information and can call him at 662-327-2663.
Montgomery, Wednesday, reflected on his childhood days in Columbus. Days that he remembers as carefree with no worries. “Back in those days, we rode our bikes where ever we wanted too, played in our backyards, played in the park, walked to school. You can’t do that now. It’s a shame that our kids can’t even play ball in the park without having to worry about getting shot.”
He’s also worried about the overall morale of our young citizens. “Tupelo recently passed an ordinance against sagging ‘pants on the ground’. Why can’t Columbus do something like that?” he wondered. “Our kids have lost the ability to be innocent. There doesn’t seem to be the urgency for respect and responsibility either. It hurts your heart to know that Columbus has come to this.”
Several members on the Columbus, Ms. Facebook Watch page have joined Montgomery in his attempt to gather info on the shooter. They’ve pledged several more hundred dollars to the reward offer.
A recent poster to the page probably said it best when he offered this opinion, “We can’t let the thugs take over Columbus…we just can’t!

Ron Williams can be contacted by email at Ronsings2you@aol.com



    • catrina kafley

      I’m with you Beth! She need to resign everything. What a disservice to Columbus. The epitome of “low class!”

  1. @ Beth if she should they all should. She just stepped in office a little while ago, this broke little town in the worst state in the whole union has been this way forever. Everyone that was in office for decades has not done anything. An it will stay this way until the “good Ol boys” go on an die off. Will ya an then Mississippi will catch up with the rest of the country.

  2. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    The judiciary in Mississippi is corruptto the bone for sure, but it’s just a microcosm of judicial corruption in the Nation’s beltway and even at the ICC where the Hague Tribunal has found Liberia’s Charles Taylor guilty of war crimes. And POTUS Obama orders extra-judicial drone executions of American citizens and foreign “suspects” abroad.

    Go figure.

  3. Ron, in Columbus city government, ethics is dead. It was shot, the body was burned and the remains were buried in an unmarked grave somewhere inside the city.
    McQueen and his lack of ethics in ignoring the Hatch Act as long as he did, then no admitting his error or apology to the taxpayers, Clinkscales and her flagrant lies about an innocent police officer and, again with no admitting her actions and apology to the officer, Liddell openly campaigning for the school superintendent job, Clinkscales AGAIN with the board violation, Karriem (who pushed hard for every one of these appointments) trying to get relatives appointed to positions, there will never be an end to it.
    People talk about the good old boy network, but in the past, where there were one, maybe two overt violators here and there, today, its hard to find one or two who aren’t violators and, sadly, people defend the actions by saying everybody does it (or has done it).
    Things are not going to get better in the city unless something serious is done in the next city election and these positions are filled with ethical people, starting with the mayor and city council. If Smith, Mickens and Karriem are re-elected, there is no hope for the next four years and optimists who say it just can’t get any worse will see that it can. Much much worse.

  4. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    James A. Traficant was expelled from Congress for investigating ethics violations abd became a target of the FBI himself, leading to his expulsion from Congress and a eight-year prison sentence.
    There is no ethics in government!

    Happy 71st Birthday Jim Trafiacnt on the “eight o’ May.”


  5. OldLawyer

    compared to the other two branches of government, the Judicial Branch is squeaky clean. Judicial scandals are rare. People hate judges because in EVERY case, half of the people involved lose and think they should have won.

    Lower Courts, like city court and justice court, attract unqualified judges like flies to crap, because the more qualified attorneys don’t have time and can’t afford to take these low-pay, part-time jobs. There is a remedy though, for these judges NEVER have the last say, because in Mississippi, you can appeal the case to County or Circuit Court and start all over again.

    So the next time you read some bellicose post or hear same, realize there’s probably a huge bunch of sour grapes behind it.

  6. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    @ OldLawyer,

    I guess that Byron Weeks’ court-appointed lawyer, Richard Burdine, failed to tell him this after Judge Lee Howard gave him(Weeks) five years in prison for knowningly buying a stolen window air conditioner from a black thief–Weeks decalred his innocence but Burdine told him that he ,as a white man, could never get a fair trial in Noxubee county.

    Judge Howard suspended the sentence and put him on probation. When someone reported that Weeks was in possession of a ” sawed-off shotgun,” his home was raided and he was hauled-off to West Point, where he was put on suicide watch–seizing his heart medicine in the process– and sent to Parhman where he was put into solitary confinemment, stripped naked and forced to sleep on a concrete floor under glaring lights 24/7.
    Weeks spent four years in that Rankin county Hell Hole.
    I don’t see how Judge Howard can sleep at night. Too bad we can’t give elected officials lie dector tests

  7. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    Closer to home is the case of Bunky Williams’ resignation from the Columbus Lownndes Recreation Commission back in March 16, 1979.

    In a resignation letter to the Board of Supervisors, Mr. Williams profferred his resignation due to the inaction of the “good ole boys” to expose the thievery of cresote poles from Propst Park.

    Quoting Mr. Williams:…As far as the investigation of the missing property is concerned, it was proven by the Columbus Police Department that the poles were deliverd to the Park. At that point they were sawed into pieces and taken away, but the identity of the person who took them evidently will never be known…

    A CC was sent to the Mayor and City Council and to Curtis Collums, President of the Recreation Commission.

  8. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    And while Sheriff Alderidge is behind a desk chirping and a burping and tweeting away on a computer, Oktibbeha county Sheriff’s department is on the ground busting the scrap metal scrap ring over there in southwest Lowndes county.
    All that talk about working with Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s must’ve been more windowdressing for public consumptiom, huh?

    Thre’s no way that LCSO doesn’t know who is fencing this stolen property. But when Justice takes a back seat to counting bloc votes, we’ll never feel safe in our homes and property.

  9. OldLawyer

    Johnny, Lee Howard is a Circuit Judge, not a lower court judge like Clinkscales.

    Those grapes puckering your mouth?

  10. JohnnyPhillipMorris


    I’m FULLY aware of that, so why would the alleged “crime” of buying a stolen air conditioner and a 1950s-style radiant gas heater at his Weeksville quick stop down on HiWay 388 at Bigbee Valley, come before Howard’s circuit court? According to Mr. Weeks’, court-appointed attorney, Richard Burdine, he was facing twenty years in Parchman Prison. Mr. Byron Weeks, a man who had no criminal record(he did have one(1) speeding citation) was told by Burdine that there was no justice before a black jury in Noxubee county, but he never argued for a change of venue. IMHO, there was a conspiracy to destroy Mr. Byron Weeks and his business by elected officials in Noxubee county. The investigating sheriff’s deputy that charged Mr. Weeks is also a retired MHP officer.
    It is hearsay, I’ll admit, but before Mr. Weeks being charged with the stolen merchandise, he claims that Judge Howard entered his Weeksville business– Mr. Weeks did not know Howard’s identity at the time– and pointed to the holstered handgun at his(Weeks) waist and said, “Someday, I’m going to take that gun away from you.” When Howard left, Weeks asked a customer, “who was that guy.” The customer told him that it was Judge Lee Howard. Judge Howard made good with his threat…he got Mr. Weeks gun as he is now a convicted felon, denied the right to own a firearm. Let’s see Judge Howard deny these claims by Byron Weeks.
    No sour grapes. If there is a lawyer out there with a passion for justice, I’m sure that Mr. Weeks would gladly be willing to give a deposition. Sadly, looking for such in Mississippi would be like Diogenes the Cynic’s mission of looking for a honest man. There are no Jimbo Traficants in Mississippi.
    It is said that Diogenes pointed his middle finger at his enemies.

    And then there’s the case of the purloined Weeksville Totem Pole. Could there be a connection?

  11. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    Btw, at 51 years od age, Mr. Weeks served four years at the Rankin County Hell Hole, housed in a compound with violent criminal offenders, after Judge Howard revoked Weeks’ probation.
    The revocation was based upon a claim that Weeks was in possession of a sawed-off shot gun at his business(Week’s “home” was located in a sideroom located inside the business.) Did Judge Howard see the “sawed-off” shotgun? The “sawed-off” shotgun was, according to Mr. Weeks, an air rifle propted up against the wall behind the cashier’s desk.
    If Judge Howard had evidence that Weeks was in violation of federal firearm laws with a sawed-off shotgun, why weren’t federal charges brought against Byron Weeks?

  12. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    @Ron Williams~

    If you’re interested, I can arrange for an interview with Mr. Weeks and his wife.

    Of course you’ll probably never be invited to another eatout with the well-connected oligarchs that run this State.

  13. Old Lawyer

    Johnny, you tell/spin a good tale, but your venomous view of your friend/relative’s case makes you an unreliable source of information. This person was convicted of a felony crime and failed to satisfy his conditions of the suspended sentence. Did your friend/relative produce the air rifle at his hearing? BTW, you can saw off a shotgun barrel without violating federal law if the barrel remains over 18 inches long. I’ve little sympathy for this person based on your bombastic posts. I’ve been listening to crackpots like you for over 30 years that make critical statements based on unreliable anecdotal evidence/incidents. And Parchman is in Sunflower County in the Delta, not in Rankin County.

  14. JohnnyPhillipMorris

    After the “sawed-off” shotgun claim, agents showed up at his home and searched it, finding ammunition in a dresser drawer. Weeks was handcuffed and hauled off to West Point, where his prescription heart medicine was seized from him and he was put on suicide watch. From there Weeks was transferred to Parchman Prison in the heart of the Delta. He was stripped naked, put in solitary confinement and forced to sleep on a concrete floor under the glare of lights 24/7.

    From there he was transferred to RANKIN oounty where he completed 4/5ths of his five year prison sentence imposed by Judge Lee Howard.

    I do not know what happened at West Point as far as a hearing on a parole violation.I suspect the possession of the .22cal. ammuntion by a felon was justification for Howard’s revoking of his parole.

    Venomous? You betcha!

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