Ohio Citizens Grand Jury (OCGJ)
Established January 1, 2014
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is your mission at OCGJ?
Our mission at OCGJ is to stand with freedom-loving citizens against those in the political class who would steal our individual and economic freedoms to enable wealth and power for themselves and their families, friends and insider special interests. We do not and should not take issue with law abiding citizens who attain wealth by hard work, creativity and initiative, but we draw the line when the political class transfers wealth to themselves and others by outflanking due process, the rule of law and standards of common decency.
Who in particular among the political class does OCGJ target for investigation?
Many 501(c) non-profit organizations serve as money laundering arms for the political class; however, the Dayton Development Coalition (DDC) and their subsidiaries stand out as among the most egregious, in our opinion. In fact, we have been investigating the DDC since 2005. Although we believe our investigation has changed the Coalition’s operations significantly, they have yet to be held accountable for gross waste, abuse and mismanagement of taxpayer dollars, not to mention compelling evidence of violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. In particular, the 2003 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Initiative Agreement, a secretive $1.9 million sweetheart deal to allegedly “save jobs” at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, serves as poster boy for political class shenanigans in the Miami Valley. Any politician, Coalition employee, corporate or academic sponsor, lobbyist, government contractor or special interest that has benefited from public money flowing into the DDC will be scrutinized by the Ohio Citizens Grand Jury.
Be more specific; what individuals are at the center of the OCGJ’s investigation?
For starters, in 2005, the last full year of the BRAC Initiative Agreement, DDC President and CEO J.P. Nauseef was compensated over $285,000, largely with public funds from local governments, state and federal grants and other subsidies. Nauseef’s compensation was about double that of the Ohio Governor and about 50 percent more than the Vice-President of the United States despite the fact that Mr. Nauseef’s span of supervision in 2005 was less than 25 employees. Fast-forward to 2011 when the Coalition reported compensating its eight top executives (Hoagland, Leftwich, Harrison, Gessel, Zeis, Hohenberger, Koorndyk and Hagerman) over $1.52 million, or on average about $190,000 each per year. (Source: DDC 2011 IRS Form 990, scroll down to pages 13 & 14, Compensation to Officers, Directors, Trustees, Key Employees, Highest Compensated Employees and Independent Contractors.) To put that in perspective, more than 36 percent of the Coalition’s 2011 revenues were paid to those eight employees or about 30 percent of the staff. To add insult to injury, over the years the vast majority of the Coalition’s revenues came from the taxpayers including the $1.9 million dollars authorized by Greene County Commissioners Madden, Harper and Reid in 2003. This is nothing short of legalized corruption. However, if you pay attention in the coming months, you will see that in regard to the BRAC Initiative Agreement, Greene County and the Coalition also appear to have broken the letter of the law to include non-appropriation of funds, the RICO Act, money laundering, tampering with evidence in a federal investigation and breach of contract, to name a few.
How can Greene County elected officials get away with corruption, legalized or otherwise?
Well the simple answer is they can’t do it by themselves, but they have plenty of help from friends and family who also populate the political class. To explain, all we have to do is review the Dayton Development Coalition’s Wright Patt 2010 Committee and Advisory Council that presided over the 2003 BRAC Initiative Agreement. Representatives included Congressman John Boehner, current Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, former U.S. Senator and Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, Dave Hobson, former U.S. Congressman, Steve Austria, former State Senator and Hobson’s successor in Congress and Kevin DeWine, former State Representative and ex-Ohio Republican Party State Chairman.
With these politicians in such close proximity to the scene of the crime, didn’t the media take notice?
Well I’m sure they took notice as we kept them in the loop every step of the way, but that’s as far as it went. More than likely they were intimidated by politicians and other “pillars of the community” on the Committee and Advisory Council, including former active duty Air Force General Officers Lester Lyles, Rob Bongiovi and Bob Raggio. Another representative includes Briggs Shade with the PMA Group, a Washington lobbying firm whose founder, Paul Magliocchetti, was sentenced to twelve years in federal prison for engineering illegal campaign contributions to dozens of congressmen including Dave Hobson and Steve Austria. And let’s not forget Sam Greenwood, former member of the Air Force Senior Executive Service, who by the way is Chairman of the Board for The Greentree Group, the company that was non-competitively awarded the $1.9 million BRAC Initiative Agreement contract in 2003. Click here 2013 Dayton Development Coalition Board of Trustees to view the current Board of Trustees at the Dayton Development Coalition. This may help you understand why the mainstream media is hesitant to dig deeper into OCGJ’s compelling allegations against the DDC.
O.K., so you’ve got a broad assemblage of politicians and wealthy elitists flying top cover for the DDC. What about law enforcement and the courts?
That’s an excellent question, and the answer is that the DDC would be out of business if prosecutors and judges would pay attention to their oath of office and not use their power and position to build a firewall between alleged white collar criminals and the law. The root cause for that is the attorney-academic complex that teaches lawyers how to win in court but not how to apply the law or uphold their oath of office to support and defend the Constitution. That’s the reason honest judges are few and far between. More often than not the only way an attorney gets in position to be a judge is to sell his soul to a corrupt system. The Greene County Common Pleas Court is no exception. OCGJ addresses this in our January 15th post, but for now it’s worth mentioning a case involving Greene County Treasurer James Schmidt who in 2010 was generously offered a plea bargain away from a felony conviction for a few misdemeanors. For years Mr. Schmidt used Greene County Treasurer resources to conduct private real estate, accounting and attorney businesses. One of his misdemeanor convictions was for doing illegal work for the Greene County Probate Court, but OCGJ couldn’t find any evidence of Probate Court Judge Hagler suffering any consequences. The deeper we dig into Greene County government the more we identify corruption tied directly to the Republican Party. For example, in 2010 not only was convicted criminal James Schmidt Greene County Treasurer, he also served as Greene County Republican Party Treasurer on the Executive Board alongside Greene County Prosecutor Stephen Haller, who served as Greene County Republican Party Secretary. It’s also important to note that convicted criminal James Schmidt’s spouse is currently Prosecutor Haller’s First Assistant Prosecuting Attorney.
What can I do to help OCGJ take on the political class?
By reading this you have already taken the first easy step, and of course how you proceed from here is up to you. One book that could help you decide how involved you want to be with OCGJ is America at the Abyss: A View from the Heartland, published in 2006. Although we have uncovered mountains of incriminating evidence since then, America at the Abyss provides a detailed archive of the early stages of the OCGJ investigation. Click here to learn how to obtain a copy of the book and learn other proactive steps to push back against the political class.
Thank you for visiting Ohio Citizens Grand Jury.
John Mitchel, Founder
Ohio Citizens Grand Jury