Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

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Lake Shore Hosp Authority

Lake Shore Hosp Auth Berry Recommends Keeping Threat of Cyberstalking Civil Action Alive

"The Board's action gives Columbia County another black eye."

Mr. Berry last night. It is not clear if he is wearing one of his new, courtesy of the tax payer, shirts.

COLUMBIA COUNTY/LAKE CITY, FL – Last night, Governor Scott's Lake Shore Hospital Authority Board, under the direction of Authority Manager, Jackson P. "Jack" Berry, kept the threat of the Craigslist-Cyberstalking civil action alive against Barbara Lemley on a split 3-2 vote. Gov. Scott's recent appointment, Ronald Foreman, moved the motion to table action on the civil action to a later date. Long time resident Sandra Buck-Camp said, "I have little respect for the Lake Shore Hospital Authority Board and challenge their judgment."

More LSHA stories are here.

Under the eye of the new Lake Shore Hospital Authority Attorney, Fred Koberlein, Manager Berry, along with Board Chairperson Lory Chancy, ignored SB50, which guarantees the public the right to comment on issues for action before the Board.

Shortly after the meeting was gaveled to order, Manager Berry asked for Board action on the Craigslist-Cyberstalking civil action. The public was never given a chance to comment.

Chairperson Chancy broke a tie vote and kept the threat alive.

Foreman gave Berry the rubber stamp

Manager Berry recommended Board action, "The State's Attorney declined prosecution on the Craigslist deal. I recommend -- the board has four years to file any civil action they want to file on it. I recommend it be tabled until a later date."

There was a long pause.

Chairperson Chancy asked for discussion.

Scott's new LSHA appointment, Ronald Foreman, said, "I'll so move."

Board member Janet Creel said, "Second."

Chairperson Chancy said, "OK. We have a motion and a second."

Board member Marc Vann said, "What happened happens -- done -- I don't see that we're gonna waste money on a civil suit down the road somewhere, whatever happens... We did what we should have. We let law enforcement do its job..."

Board member Tim Murphy asked attorney Koberlein, "Fred, what's your input?"

Koberlein: do nothing or something

Attorney Koblerlein opined, said there were thousands of laws.

 Mr. Koberlein answered, "The motion is to table it, which means that it would be tabled indefinitely. I don't see that it does what trustee Vann has stated. It doesn't take any action, but at the same time it doesn't bring it to a final conclusion. It will bring itself to a conclusion at the end of a statute of limitations."

Mr. Koberlein continued, "I haven't done any research on what laws may have been violated in the civil realm. I don't plan on doing any unless the board told me to. My advice would be until we know what particular damages were assessed, I wouldn't be (unintelligible). Tabling it allows the board to keep its options open and do nothing, or do something in the future."

Tim Murphy wanted to "rebuke" the SA decision.

Mr. Murphy asked, "How do you rebuke a ruling like this from the State’s Attorney’s Office?"

Mr. Koberlein advised that the State’s Attorney has the final word.

Ms. Chancy asked, "Tim, are you asking what the difference between the criminal and the civil would be?"

Manager Berry answered, "No, he is not."

Mr. Murphy said, "I don't know what the statutes are in somethin' like this."

After some discussion, Chairperson Chancy said, "We have a motion on the floor to table anything to do with -- can I say our invasion on Craigslist?"

Manager Berry gave Ms. Chancy instructions under his breath, "Just say Craigslist."

Board members Vann and Murphy voted against tabling the Craigslist issue for further review and civil action. Creel and Foreman voted to table. Chancy broke the tie, and voted to keep the potential of the civil action alive.

No one from the State's Attorney's Office would take ownership of any of the conversations with the Lake City Police Department. The Lake City Police Department has failed to divulge with whom it spoke at the State Attorney's Office.

A copy of the relevant State Attorney file reveals nothing about who at the State's Attorney's Office handled the investigation.

Post Meeting

Sandra Buck-Camp, a long time Columbia County resident told the Observer, "After watching this faux cyberstalking issue evolve, I am discouraged about the Lake Shore Hospital Authority and have little respect for the Board and challenge its judgment."

Barbara Lemley said, "Tabling this matter keeps the threat of a civil action alive. It inhibits public participation and involvement in local government. The Board's action gives Columbia County another black eye."

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