September of 2016 was a sunny — summer time day. The Honorable U.S. Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, visited Cleveland. The land of the free had its first Black American President, Barack Obama.
The Administration presented America with her, first, Black female U.S. Attorney General, the Honorable Loretta Lynch. With the piercing, pleading and palpable eyes of a grief stricken Black mother, the General came to Cleveland with a seriousness message.
President Barack Obama’s Department of Justice Administration had heard enough about Cleveland, Ohio. The winds of justice presented surefire facts.
Judges’ courtroom defendants included — but were not limited to — murders, robbers, kidnappers and impressionable and poor Black men. They received, no money down, bail bonds credit contracted loans. Insurance industry insiders named those bail bond crime-on-credit contracts. Other criminal specialist saw those loans as hit man contracts.
Only Chief Judge Richard McMonagle, with the help of Chief Sheriff Gerald McFaul, could order the execution of those killer contracts.
Criminals repaid those bail bond loans at the tip of each blood-dripping bullet. They continuously committed crimes in their communities, upon their bond release. Judges, lawyers and insurance companies divvied up the crime proceeds. They overlooked the dead body count. On Tuesday of December 27, 2016, Cleveland recorded 135 murders. In other words, judges, lawyers and bail bond insurance companies held Black communities hostage.
Beyond a Black man’s criminal just-us system, Cleveland had a bail bond insurance syndicate. Judges, lawyers and bail bond agents peddled bond IOU and pay-to-play insurance to Courtroom defendants. With the Ohio Department of Insurance (ODI) and Judge Richard McMonagle’s backing, criminals held Black citizens’ neighborhoods hostage at the tip of a bullet.
Before criminals could carry out judges’ killer contracts, bail bondsmen received judges’ permission — authorized by the ODI. Once done, jail doors swung open. Connected criminals hit the streets of Cleveland in search of money tied to more dead bodies. Judges’ defendants who refused the killer contracts, well… they usually rotted away in jail until their postponed court date. Court cancellation occurred repeatedly — deliberately. Most killer contract refusers lost their jobs, homes, and marriages. They remained silent for fear of loss of life to them or love ones.
While the killing occurred, Ohio’s insurance regulators and watchdog — Governor John Kasich’s Ohio Department of Insurance (ODI) — green lighted the syndicates’ operation.
Crime-on-credit was the ODI’s dirty little secret. Not any more, the General knew about Cleveland’s bail bond syndicate. The city’s power brokers, political pundits and the media were crucial syndicate actors.
There were lights, cameras and action as she stood piercing across the speakers’ podium. Ready to capture her every word were an assortment of fuzzy, foam covered, and aluminum faced microphones. Instead of static, a loud shrill sound hummed from the mics —
momentarily. The General didn’t flinch. She pierced through the flashing lights and crowds of news cameras, The Honorable U.S. Attorney General, Loretta Lynch spoke.
She declared that the Courts’ bail bond insurance in Cleveland was, nothing short of, unconstitutional. In other words, bail bond insurance rained death upon Black people.
At least, someone in Washington, D.C. shared my concerns. In Cleveland, Ohio, the time for bail bond reform had come. The history of Judge Richard McMonagle stood in the way. But, reading between the lines of her words, I figured that the General had given me permission to write my version of bail bond insurance in Cleveland. ©