From the May 2001 Idaho Observer:

How real people become ham sandwiches

Travesty proves sophisiticated treachery in courts

by Don Harkins

SANDPOINT -- Doris Ann Parkison, a dedicated wife and mother of four who owned an upholstery business here, was found guilty April 27, 2001, of possessing methamphetamine that nobody but police have ever seen. The charges of possession stem from an incident where Parkison, 45, had been pulled over from behind by Ponderay Police Officer Steve McClelland for a cracked windshield the afternoon of January 25, 1999.

On August 26, 1999, District Judge James Michaud granted the defendant's Motion to Suppress evidence that had been obtained beyond the scope of the stop by Idaho State Police Trooper Terry Ford who arrived on the scene to “assist” with his drug dog Rose, since retired. Though granting the motion effectively killed the state's case against Parkison, Bonner County Prosecutor Phil Robinson appealed Judge Michaud's decision to the Idaho State Court of Appeals.

The appellate court reversed Judge Michaud's ruling and remanded the case to the district court of Judge Michaud December 18, 2000. The reversed decision ultimately led to Parkison's April 27 conviction.


The Parkison's owned 60 acres of forest near Hope. Their property is adjacent to land that seems to be important to powerful forces that, according to the Parkison's, may be engaging in activities that involve advanced electromagnetic technologies associated with mind and weather control.

The Parkisons, who moved into the area four years ago from Auburn, Wash., were also researching some of the curious relationships among the power structure in Bonner county.

By the time she was pulled over by Officer McClelland, the Parkison's claim that they had already experienced several months of mostly psychological harassment from largely unidentified sources.

For what it is worth, I believe them.


Parkison's conviction is an example of how the courtroom can become a battlefield whereupon the state metaphorically kills a naked, unarmed civilian with tanks, infantry and air support.

Private Attorney Doug Phelps of Coeur d'Alene wrote the motion to Suppress that was granted by Judge Michaud who agreed that evidence that had been obtained by Trooper Ford had been obtained illegally.

Judge Michaud's decision at the time may have been motivated by an imminent civil action that would likely be filed by Phelps on behalf of Parkison who had been subjected to horrible humiliation while in Bonner County Jail after her arrest. After being booked into jail, Parkison was told to take a shower and then forced to stand naked, with only a hand towel to cover herself, for almost an hour while in view of both male and female police personnel.

Between the civil rights violations of the stop and her treatment in jail, Parkison had a lot of issues to which a jury would be sympathetic -- an open door to the filing of a costly and embarrassing civil suit against the county.

The fix?

Parkison claims that she had no contact with her attorney Doug Phelps since Judge Michaud granted the Motion to Suppress in August, 1999. She found out about the appeals court reversal of Judge Michaud's decision when she read about it in the newspaper. Parkison also claims that after reading about the reversal and remand in the newspaper, Phelps did not respond to her repeated attempts to contact him.

Parkison then claims reading the newspaper January 4, 2001 was the day she first learned Phelps had filed a civil suit against the county on her behalf.

According to Parkison, Phelps was unavailable to her until mid-March, 2001. Though she expected the county to file charges against her and a civil action had been filed on her behalf, she states that no preparations were made for trial in the pending criminal matter. Parkison also states that Phelps was unavailable to discuss her civil case.

On the morning of Monday, April 23, 2001, Parkison opened an envelope from her attorney that said a pretrial conference before Judge Michaud was scheduled to take place at 4 p.m. that same afternoon.

Judge Michaud patiently awaited the arrival of Phelp's associate Terry Anderson to arrive. Anderson, who was 45 minutes late and had never met Parkison, made a feeble oral request for a continuance that was denied by Judge Michaud.

Parkison's husband Don managed to get a handwritten letter to the judge who read it into the record. The letter, though ill-advised, was the sincere reflection of a good man who was totally frustrated with the lawless forces that had thrown themselves against his family.

Trial was set for Thursday, April 26 at 9 a.m.

After the hearing, Anderson said he would prepare and serve subpoenas on two witnesses for Parkison the following day.

Anderson was unavailable the next day so Parkison had the subpoenas prepared and served herself.

Her attorney was representing whom?

The morning of the trial, Parkison was on time for an appointment to meet with Anderson at 7 a.m. to discuss her case. Anderson was 40 minutes late. Anderson seemed surprised that Parkison had managed to subpoena her witnesses without him.

We have an accurate record of that meeting. Anderson did not appear to be interested in Parkison's witnesses, the state's lack of illegally obtained evidence, nor did he appear to be cooperative in developing a strategy that would present a defense intended to prove her innocence.

The night before Parkison came to realize that all along her attorney had not been representing her interests. Knowing in her heart that Anderson was going to betray her, she was up until almost 2 a.m. the night before trial and wrote a motion in support of dismissal of counsel. The motion detailed all of the issues mentioned previously in this article, and more, and then requested that the court allow her to dismiss Phelps & Associates as her attorneys and that she be given 90 days to obtain competent counsel and prepare a suitable defense.

Judge Michaud read the motion into the record. Then he denied the continuation. He then informed Parkison that she may continue pro se, with Anderson as advisory counsel, but he would not grant her a continuation to obtain competent counsel and prepare a suitable defense.

A jury was then chosen, Anderson dismissed the witnesses Parkison had subpoenaed and Parkison was slam-dunked by an ignorant jury that same day.

Judge Michaud ordered that sentencing be scheduled June 12, 2001 and that Parkison report the following day to the Bonner County Sheriff for a urinary analysis. He told her that if she tested positive, he would keep her in jail until sentencing.

What just happened?

When Judge Michaud granted the Motion to Suppress in 1999, he effectively killed many of Parkison's issues -- res judicata. If he was reversed upon appeal, she would not be able to remake the same arguments. If she were found guilty upon remand, the civil case, which was not zealously filed or pursued, could be compromised.

It was clear to Parkison and witnesses that the judge, the prosecutor and her attorneys all participated in a plan to railroad her into prison.

Though she could prove that she was about to be malpracticed into prison for things she did not do, Judge Michaud proceeded with the trial regardless.

Rather than take a urine test that she felt would fail no matter what, she left. Judge Michaud has ordered a $40,000 bond if she is “captured.”

And that is how a real person becomes a ham sandwich. To the state Parkison was not a person any longer; she was not someone's husband or mother or friend -- she was a thing that can be eaten.

Note: Doris was captured in Pierce county, Wash., May 4. She is awaiting extradition to Idaho for contempt of court. Her husband was also captured and is now being charged with assault and obstruction.

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