June 27, 2014

Do the feds finally have the goods on John Wiley Price?

Our Man Downtown, closer to a new "seat" somewhere?
John Wiley Price, "Our Man Downtown" to hundreds of thousands of African-Americans in South Dallas who salute him as the first, and still the only, black member of the Dallas County Commissioners Court, while ignoring the fact that he's become ever more a part of the Dallas "system" over the years, helped by the plenty of exercise he's given his pit bull dog, Shake Down, over the years, may finally be nearing the end of his rope.

He has an "invitation" to meet with federal prosecutors next week. He's already received a "target letter" from the U.S. Attorney's office.

Our Man's attorney, Billy Ravkind, foolishly thinks a plea deal is unlikely. However, the fact that he even mentioned that that's what this meeting is surely about means Our Man's facade is crumbling a bit, doesn't it?

This all said, for the Snooze to call this an "exclusive" is a bit of puffery. Jim Schutze over at the Observer has been on JWP's butt well before the Snooze was. After Our Man Downtown stopped throwing his elbows too much and learned his place at the table, even while redefining it a bit, the Paper of Dallas Insiders' Record accepted him as an insider.

That said, we still don't know exactly what bag of goodies, or multiple bags, the Eff Bee Eye has been looking at. As I note here, it could be skimming from Kwanzaafest, it could be his alleged shakedown of commercial developer Richard Allen of Dallas inland port plans for south Dallas and the Best Southwest suburbs, it could be some zoning-related scheme we don't know about or more.

After all, even when not engaged in clear illegality, JWP's done other bigfootery, of both hired and elected officials, in furtherance of his own goals.

Update, July 3: JWP decided not to show for the meeting. If he had, here's what likely would have gone down. Looking at that, I'd expect the feds to offer Downtown and Ravkind one round of negotiations to reschedule a meeting. If not, and men in black have some solid charges, expect an indictment before Labor Day.

Comments at that link are interesting. Do the duo think they can  actually pull off jury nullification if a case goes to trial? It's barely possible if it's Richard Allen and the Inland Port, I supposed. But, if Downtown has been grafting Kwanzaafest and the feds connect the dots, not a chance.

Related to that is, who could JWP snitch on, if he were in a mood to do so? If it's Kwanzaafest, probably he's near the top of the food chain. Inland Port? Ross Perot Jr. comes first to mind for me and many others. Or, Royce West. Or Eddie Bernice Johnson. Or a trifecta.

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