Justice for Sale in St. Louis County

“I couldn’t beat them; I didn’t have the resources they had. They had all the money in the world and the backing… I’m just an average man.” — Kenneth Gladney

The trial of the two men who beat Kenneth Gladney almost two years ago came to a close Tuesday afternoon. After two days of testimony, the jury deliberated for forty minutes before Perry Mollens and former St. Louis mayoral candidate, the Reverand Elston McCowan, were found not guilty. McCowan and Molens were members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) when the attack occurred.

On the first day of the trial, Gateway Pundit noted that union supporters were out in force to intimidate Gladney. In the courtroom, the defense planned to turn the court fight into a he-said, she-said because the prosecution did not have video of how the fight started. The defense also argued that McCowan and Molens had a right to self-defense, but that rests on the belief that Gladney instigated the confrontation.

The implication that Kenneth Gladney started the fight is simply absurd. McCowan and Molens are each over six feet tall and weigh north of 200 pounds. Gladney is a cancer survivor who’s about 5′ 6″ and weighs about 130lb. Furthermore, Gladney was there selling buttons. He wanted to make a few bucks. In April of 2009, he was selling Obama paraphernalia. Like most merchants, he sells what the people want and he doesn’t pick fights with his clientele, so it’s absurd to assert that he instigated a fight with McCowan.

Sadly, the trial was a charade orchestrated to exonerate McCowan and Molens. The St. Louis Post Dispatch, noted how McCowan ingratiate himself to the jurors:

McCowan, a Baptist minister, got chuckles in the courtroom when he testified that he didn’t turn the other cheek because it “hadn’t gotten hit yet.”

So the minister turned aside a question about his character with humorous arrogance. He needs to work on his Christian witness.

The real reason that the trial went as it did was that Molens, McCowan, and the SEIU sprung for high powered lawyer, Paul D’Agrosa. POedPatriot had this to say about both D’Agrosa and the prosecutor representing Gladney’s side, Shujat Qalbani:

As I sat in the courtroom today watching the closing arguments, the difference between the prosecuting attorney and the union paid private lawyer was as stark a contrast as night is from day. The spit, polish and confidence of the union lawyer, compared to the stumbling and stuttering of the unsure prosecuting attorney made it more than obvious what the outcome of this trial was going to be.

It would seem that when justice isn’t being delayed, it’s for sale in St. Louis county.

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