The John Adams Story

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Despite being blocked from all my pages, and being “on the run” or a “fugitive” from the law, it’s interesting to me how John Adams can still manage to send me occasional belligerent and enraged messages. A sort of sad irony, as at one point I had been a loyal supporter, and saw the boldness and vision of it. I identified with his moral indignation at the Centre County judiciary and Courts to some extent.

I have not quite pegged down John Adam’s personality. It’s as volatile and unpredictable as it is impassioned. Sure Adams can make some noise, but what kind of noise is it? Some people need to make noise for the sake of making noise, and they do it seemingly without thinking about what they are saying. Adam’s likes to make noise, and he is effective at it.

John Adams has his personal draws, but if you get too close to try and have any sort of reasonable political discussion, you are met with sudden and spontaneous and misdirected antagonism. I would describe him as bombastic, blindly rallying for a cause but only doing half his homework to back up his advocacy. He’ll turn on you at the drop of a hat for some contrived and paranoid reason he fabricated in his own mind. He alienates supporters by doing just that, and his following on social media continues to dwindle. John Adams is that untrained dog suspicious of human beings, he bites without knowing exactly why he is being aggressive.

It’s impulsive, and unable to be soothed unless that reassurance is constantly maintained, which in itself is an exhaustive process. And if it can get him more attention online or bring more attention to his own personal “cause”, he will throw you under the bus at the drop of the hat, and then like a clinical textbook case of borderline personality disorder, he’ll apologize a few hours later. It’s more bewildering and confounding than it is threatening. If demonizing one supporter will increase they sympathy others have for his victimhood, he is all about it; for as strong as John Adams is in bolstering a cause, he is equally as impassioned to beat up himself.

Adams has made some outrageous claims in the heat of his temper tantrums, and he has a curiously loyal but -these days –  ultimately shady following of mainly out of town social media groupies. Or if they are local, then a lot of local under-educated, easily manipulated, seedy, opioid infested world underworld in rural Bellefonte. People were first fascinated by the idealism of the bold protesting-activist; but then overtime and a sequence of events, grew tired of the constant reiteration by John Adams repeating – again and again – the same old story of the John Adams tragedy.

Adams was known for standing out in front of the courthouse with a megaphone every Wednesday for weeks on end, through the cold of the winter. They were a familiar sight to any lawyer walking up to the courthouse.

Initially, Judge Kistler even stopped to encourage what they were doing. He was on his way into court. He looked both curious and gave a subtle and subdued encouragement, before walking quickly away in his pink bow tie. In typical Adams fashion, the whole thing got recorded on an iphone. And the video, of course, went viral – eventually making its way back to Parks Miller, who was boiling with rage over the 10 second encounter. But neither Adams nor Kistler had really done anything wrong, though you can tell from Kistler’s terseness and apprehension in the video that he probably regretted stopping the second after he did. But he had to, with all the formalities and laws to be followed as judge, it was nice to hear someone screaming what everyone else was already thinking in the same room. The first amendment right is not nearly expressed as often as it should be in Centre County, and here was a young man with passion and a voice, and what we thought was a message. I understand why he paused.

There are unforgettable moments. The first Tuesday or Wednesday (I can’t exactly remember which) is jury selection in Centre County. Hundreds of Centre County citizens get subpoenaed to serve as jurors. They wait outside in the hot sun, the fall weather or the dead cold of winter shivering outside the courthouse, awaiting the doors to unlock, very early in the morning. They go through metal detectors and shuffle in slowly to the main courthouse room. They wait, with sometimes standing room only, as the lawyers and prosecutors go case by case and quickly select a jury.

Jury exit questionaires reflect jury complaints that the place is cold and drafty, the wait is long. And I know, first hand, that the process is clinical and dry at best.

Although Parks Miller did seem to add her own entertainment to the process. To Parks Miller it was “showtime”, as in this is the biggest audience she would have all month, and this was her chance to “show off” and “network” with jurors.

Some of the most unseemly Parks Miller moments occurred during jury selection. She came prepared as that was a day she could be center stage and maybe win over more voters. She upped her already histrionic performances even further, engaging in activities that would make out of county Judges get so angry they would end up with brain aneurysms or burst blood vessels in their eyes due to the circus she made of it.

If you talk on the fly to any of the law enforcement officers, courthouse employees or even sometimes defense lawyers, their eyes grow big. It’s both appalling and delicious gossip all at the same time.

Selecting a jury is supposed to be a semi neutral process. Committed inmates show up in plain clothes unshackled to present a “neutral” first impression to the jury. Voir dire involves pre-approved questions by the judge which are offered by both sides of counsel, both prosecution and defense.

The process is supposed to be neutral, clinical and balanced. Imagine the shock, and the eye-widening that occurred when Parks Miller strutted around in the courthouse, rubbing the backs of potential jurors, whispering in their ears, meanwhile defense attorneys were exploding out of their seats and the nostrils of sitting judges began to flare. Growing intempered and full of hot rage in one second, and giggly and gossipy in the next second; a riveting roller coaster of contrived human emotions which vary -literally – second by second. Like Ben & Jerry’s, 31 different flavors and you never know what your going to get.

I heard one particular instance where she asked a criminal defendant to “stand up and turn around” to make sure no potential jurors had any recognition of him. The defense lawyer exploded out of the seat, pushing his slowly standing client back down in his seat as they did: “Objection. Excuse me. But my client is not on display.” And even then, the Judges were hesitant to call order. Confronting Parks Miller is like setting a match on a puddle of gasoline. The Judge dryly responded, “Sustained.” Parks Miller heaved with disdain and fury. Neutrality for potential criminals innocent till proven guilty, not acceptable! The buttons hung on by threads on her skin tight blazer, and her face reddened like a child trying to control a temper tantrum in the ice cream aisle.

Lots of lazy days go by in the Centre County Courthouse, preliminaries, arraignments and sentences go down with little fanfare. Very few people in the audience, sometimes just two lawyers, a Judge, a Defendant and a court reporter in the room. It’s these days Parks Miller showed up late, with tangled hair, glazed over eyes, messed up files, half paying attention to the proceedings but mostly on her phone. There was nobody to impress on those lazy days, she had no audience, so no performance was bothered to be made. But the once-a-month jury selection day, for Parks Miller, was a stage for her ultimate performances. The shrillest and most hysterical and histrionic behaviors, she was there to perform and impress. Though, jury exit questionnaires would show she did neither.

But the beautiful thing about Parks Miller, is kind of the same draw that John Adams has: Parks Miller cannot distinguish between different types of attention. To Parks Miller, attention was attention, and she was addicted to it. So if every potential juror was watching her with fascination or horror, she lacked the social intelligence to discern the difference. To her it was just attention, and attention was her drug, or one of many.

The county lawyers, who routinely went to court, were annoyed but through the years had grown rather accustomed and calloused to the performance on the first Tuesday of every month that was jury selection day. For the most part, Parks Miller’s charades were met with eye rolls and imploring looks at the judges to get their courts under control. There were explosive scenes, but the local law community had developed an understanding that if you met the hysterical outbursts of Parks Miller with her level of hysteria, she would only escalate. Everyone else just wanted it to run normally and smoothly, it was exhausting for all attorneys, judges and law enforcement involved, particularly – as I’ve heard – the law enforcement.

Bored, unsuspecting jurors, shuffling into court and waiting around expecting to be bored for hours as if they were sitting at the DMV were often riveted. They were riveted, but horrified all at once. She was all over the room, she was rubbing the backs of potential jurors, she was screeching at the judges, she was breaking pre-Ordered line of questioning from voir dire. She was giggling, or full of rage. She wore her tightest clothes and highest heels, her brightest lipstick. She was manic and bouncing all over the room, an array of every emotion, but easy to stir up into a hysterical and shrill fit of supremely inappropriate emotion at the slightest hint of perceived criticism or questioning as to her overly strung out assertions. Jury selection was her day, it was her “Centre” stage, it was “stacy” day, and more exposure to voters than any other day of the month.

So one of the most memorable moments was John Adams, outside in front of the courthouse, on jury selection day.

Adams had run ins with the sherriff’s before, “Yes sir Sheriff Nau”, he had said as Nau – flanked by two officers – chased him down the stairs during a press conference held by Parks Miller regarding her own criminal grand jury. “Yes Sir, yes sir,” John Adams said retreating, but he is a spunky SOB, and was sure to get a last word over his shoulder.

It was an especially memorable cold morning on the once a month jury selection day. Parks Miller walked into the courthouse like she was strutting onto a red carpet, her heels especially high, her blazer especially tight so it looked like the buttons were about to burst. Her eye make up was especially thick, it was an election year. The defense attorneys and their clients waited with both wary and intrigue.

The jurors shuffled in, but they didn’t look so bored that morning. John Adams and his posse had been standing outside with masks and signs. Someone had given him a megaphone, or he had found one somewhere. Wherever the hell he got it, he was now especially loud. Chanting things on the megaphone, which was loud enough that now it reverberated through the halls of the courthouse and within the main courtroom. The windows rattled, as he said “F#ck Stacy Parks Miller and her grand jury.” The Judge and defense attorneys went on, purposely ignoring the ruckus. Sometimes trying to hide their snide smirks at the humor of it all.

The serious proceedings went on with no acknowledgement from the Judge or the defense attorneys. Potential jurors were lined up and summarily and perfunctorily questioned with seasoned professional efficiency, except for the prosecutor. Not at all, Parks Miller, the all star performer, usually took enter of the stage and thrust into her acting; She was (on that particular day) – instead-  noticeably and visibly stone-faced, and set with a cold look of rage and utter irritation.

No matter her mood, it was courthouse business. The proceedings went on. The noise and chanting was increasingly taunting. Parks Miller was seen on multiple occasions pausing to hiss angrily at the bailiff, sheriff or deputies present. They nodded seriously trying to hide their entertained smirks.

The law was clear, John Adams was expressing his first amendment and had a right to be there and do just that on public property. All Americans have the right to peaceably assemble and gather, and to criticize their government.

Denny Nau was retired and Sheriff Sampsel had taken over. This new Sheriff was more by the book. And honestly, at that point in time, John Adams did have a fair share of law enforcement officers who secretly supported him. They drove by in Bellefonte Police Department squad cars, and they didn’t honk in support – (like other civilian cars), but they sometimes winked at him or gave the thumbs up. The law enforcement at that time was so fed up with the charades by the Centre County District Attorney, they bore the brunt of it and were the among the first to truly just want her out of office. As technically she was their boss, their vocal objections were stifled, but they could give subtle objections…. Like winking at the long blonde haired noisey fired up menace screaming into a megaphone as they drove by. Sampsel wasn’t about to bend the rules of the constitution to make Parks Miller’s jury selection day more comfortable for her. The noise continued, and her performance that day was notably less enthusiastic, till finally midway through she retreated upstairs to the district attorneys office sulking and hid herself, letting her Assistant District Attorney’s finish the work. A move she never allowed on Jury Selection day, because that was her day to be center stage in front of a population of potential voters. Madness is the only way to describe that.

There are a lot of ways to piss Parks Miller off, but the most notable one is to steal her role as Center Of Attention. John Adams had committed the ultimate transgression, and as history has shown us, Parks Miller tends to react impulsively, emotionally, vitriolically and with retaliation in mind. I believe her exact quote in an email was “We don’t retaliate, we escalate.” And after that public embarrassment, she was bound to escalate. It didn’t quite register to her how John Adams was a private citizen, and she was an elected official. It would not have mattered if John Adams were vice president of the United States at that moment, Parks Miller wanted revenge, and revenge was to be had at whatever costs.

As you likely guessed, John Adams did not have the most sterling or polished of criminal records. He had a few run ins with the law, mostly petty crimes or bar fighting. But John Adams who always had respect for the consititution took his run ins with the law very seriously, and they stressed him out. He confessed them to me, and was very serious and solemn and regretful. Since Parks Miller has made him a “fugitive” of the law, as he likes to dramatically say, he takes that which such seriousness, like he was wanted for murder.

And sure, she would have sought retaliation, some level of vengeance. But John Adams disappeared as soon as she made him a fugitive, and quiet ensued. The quietude was almost as good as the revenge for Parks Miller, because Parks Miller knew if he were to be arrested on the furnishing of alcohol charges, he would not come quietly. He would come kicking and screaming and talking to the press and make a bigger scene than he already had, and by that time Adams had enough fire to really embarrass the already scandalized district attorney.

In addition to that, Adams still had his law enforcement supporters. Some law enforcement even dressing up as Adams for halloween, wearing a long blond wig and a hankerchief, and carrying a sign that said “Rabble Rabble Rabble.” It was meant as flattery and humor, but of course, Adams – ever cantankorous and suspicious of everyone – took immediate offense. The relations with law enforcement soured a little further with this erratic and angry outpouring of social media over what was supposed to be a humorous gesture.

Meanwhile, Adams took to being a fugitive, though he probably – at that point in time – could have walked into the lobby of the Bellefonte Police and no one would have bothered to arrest him. The rumors on his whereabouts varied. Photos on facebook showed him under palm trees and in various parts of the United States, and he appeared to be traveling by his constant updates on facebook. But the photos appeared photo-shopped, and there were equally as many posts about his video game achievements, so by many accounts Adams wasn’t traveling at all. The most convincing information that I heard was he was hiding out in Philipsburg, which is a great place to hide by many law enforcement accounts because “Philipsburg is that rock nobody wants to look under” and Philipsburg is mainly left alone unless some meth addict makes noise, or some fight breaks out at the Sheetz in the middle of the night.

Meanwhile, Adams milked his victimhood on social media, expressing to everyone who would listen how he was a target because he was a whistleblower. It was half true. Parks Miller probably would not have bothered to dig up charges, but Adams had offended her personally, and revenge was to be had. If you listen to Adams side of the story, Adams was the “victim”, he was “framed  because he was a whistle blower. If you hear law enforcement side of the story, law enforcement has him on camera selling alcohol to underage kids on a playground.

Camera’s don’t lie. Neither does Sean Weaver. Weaver, who never outwardly appeared to be a Stacy Parks Miller supporter, is a man of the law. If the law was broken, he is going to file charges. So Adam was caught on camera, and Weaver watched the footage and filed the appropriate charges. They were not excessive, they were just the run of the mill charges.

However the way Adams describes his side of things, you would think he was facing a murder conviction. Furnishing alcohol to minors is an ARD offense, meaning no jail time and probably some hefty fines, and court supervision. Adams, who has always been respectful (for the most part) to law enforcement, and is strangely republican and pro-gun, pro-military, was deeply disturbed by this impending potential criminal sentence. He was embarrassed and outright offended. He felt he had done his civic and patriotic duty and been run out of his own town, but that’s Adams side of things – always overwrought with too much passion and paranoia.

But nobody was really looking for him. Adams did not calculate that the Bellefonte Police, PSP and other law enforcement agencies had better things to do, there were multiple murders last year, and Governor Wolf declared Pennsylvania to be in a “state of crisis” as a result of the heroin epidemic.

As I previously stated, it was an election year, and Parks Miller grew to appreciate the quiet outside of the courthouse almost as much as she wanted revenge on John Adams. It simmered, mostly, except for Adam’s erratic and bombastic attacks online, where he just started attacking everyone and grew increasingly volatile and paranoid.

Months rolled by, then a year. Rumor was that law enforcement knew exactly where Adams was, but nobody was coming after him. Law enforcement had bigger fish to fry, and Miller wasn’t exactly pushing for that type of noise or press during an election season. Jury selection days were now again Parks Miller days.

At the present time, I don’t know where Adams is and I have little contact with him, although I know he watches my pages closely. I imagine he is in Philipsburg still holed up in some basement like he is wanted for mass murder, playing video games and getting his few remaining supporters to commiserate with the same story he has spent the last year of his life looking for sympathy for.

It’s truly a far cry from the bold, noisy, altruistic, constitution carrying, armed Adam and his dog we saw in front of the courthouse a couple years ago. It’s a far cry from the Adams that Kistler once stopped in the street to greet on his way into court, or that the cops winked at, or gave the thumbs up to or dressed up as for halloween.

There was a time when Adams had broader causes, like the water crisis in Flint Michigan, or the courthouse corruption. But the life of solitude and intentional hiding has worn him down into a sort of modern day Henry David Thoreau. Except it’s not half as romantic as Walden Pond, instead of a cabin in the woods; instead, it’s an X-Box, a futon in phillipsburg, a facebook account to lash out at people with, shrinking supporters, and a sob story, that is really quite more dramatic than what it sounds.

Adams has said the most horrible things about and to some of his biggest supporters in the legal community, law enforcement and people who once considered him an interesting, dynamic and talented political ally. His alienation, is just that: His.

Meanwhile the world goes on. And while I write this awaiting the barrage of nasty things to come that Adam will likely venomously spew across social media, I’m hoping to see the return of that liberal minded activist, and someone willing to take responsibilities for his actions. Like many of you, I also wanted to believe in his innocence, but cameras don’t lie. And whatever vitriol you spew, I’m immune to it. I am ashamed of nothing, and wish you only luck. For all you hated Parks Miller, and criticized her, you two are uniquely similar in your emotional volatility and impulsive tendencies to speak before thinking.

Wherever you are John Adams, Godspeed to you, and I hope to see your comeback soon. The sulking, vitriolic hermit is so faux pas, and your supporters are growing more and more sparse, and – even worse – bored by this act, which has already gone on too long.

I hope you become relevant again soon.

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