WHY WAS THE VIDEO OF THE STERLING FRITZ DEBATE EDITED BEFORE BEING UPLOADED BY THE ST. MARY’S LIBRARY ON YOUTUBE?
BY KEN ROSSIGNOL
THE CHESAPEAKE TODAY
NEWS AND COMMENTARY ON POLITICAL CHICANERY
The video posted by the St. Mary’s County Library on its YouTube account shows the time stamp at the beginning of the debate between Jaymi Sterling and Richard Fritz, beginning at 25:26.
The video loaded onto the St. Mary’s County Government YouTube account also shows the start time as 25:26 for the two candidates for States Attorney. Moderator Alonzo Gaskins says good evening to the crowd at exactly 26:12.
The St. Mary’s Library video ends at 1:05:08 when the forum shifts to the debate between the Sheriff candidates.
KEY QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS DELETED, INCLUDING STERLING RETORT TO FALSE CLAIMS BY FRITZ THAT STERLING NEVER TRIED A MURDER CASE
In comparison, the League of Women Voters 2022 Primary Election Candidates Forum for June 15, 2022, posted on the St. Mary’s County Government YouTube account, ends at 1:10:40, more than five minutes longer, or to put it another way, the video posted on the Library YouTube account had five minutes of the debate between Sterling and Fritz edited and left on the cutting room floor by someone who had unknown motivations to shorten the dialogue between the candidates.
As of 11:20 pm on June 16, 2022, there were 596 views of the debate on the Library YouTube account, while at the same time, on the same day, there were but 36 views of the video posted on the St. Mary’s County Government account at YouTube.
In the video of the debate posted on the St. Mary’s County Government site, at the 40:56-time stamp, Gaskins asked Fritz a question from the audience that said they were very concerned about how Fritz handled the case of Peyton Ham. Ham was shot dead when he pointed a gun at a State Trooper. Ham had called two 911 calls reporting a man walking around with a handgun.
After Fritz answered that the Grand Jury decided not to charge the state trooper due to the evidence presented, the next question was posed to Fritz about his participation in the midnight raid on newsstands in 1998. Fritz and seven others swept out the night before the election to prevent voters from reading about his criminal past before voting. Fritz said he knew nothing that prevents newspapers from being “purchased,” and that is what happened; they were “purchased.”
The Fourth Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals instructed Fritz in 2003 on his actions in denying the First Amendments rights of the readers of ST. MARY’S TODAY and the publisher, a lesson that cost the taxpayers millions in providing defense attorneys for St. Mary’s Sheriff Richard Voorhaar and six deputies involved in the raid and intimidation of clerks in stores. Fritz paid the publisher $10,000 out of his pocket, and the taxpayers paid over $450,000 to settle the federal civil rights action as described in Rossignol v Voorhaar.
When asked if he supported the Second Amendment, Fritz leaped to his feet to give a stirring speech emphasizing how important it is for women to arm themselves in their homes in case an invader crashes in with the intent of harming her and her children while her husband may be on deployment with the armed services.
Another question cut out of the video posted on the St. Mary’s County Library YouTube account was about serious felony cases tried by Sterling. Sterling listed homicide cases she tried in court that contradicted campaign lies that Fritz has used to bolster his case for reelection and to diminish Sterling.
MOST JOURNALISTS WOULD RUN FROM HAVING THIS PHOTO TAKEN FOR POLISHING THE APPLES OF TWO OFFICIALS
Fritz operative John Wharton, who covered for Fritz in his job reporting on cops and courts for the former Enterprise newspaper, assisted the NAACP and the League of Women Voters with the questions posed at the campaign debate. Fritz and Sheriff Tim Cameron gave Wharton an award when he retired for the years of endless positive and pandering articles about both public officials.
The St. Mary’s County League of Women Voters has a long history of running tainted debates with ethically challenged moderators.
Jaymi Sterling said she knew there seemed to be a chunk of the debate missing from the video. She hadn’t had the time yet to evaluate why and was shocked to learn that crucial questions were cut out of the video on the YouTube St. Mary’s Library account.
As the video posted on the St. Mary’s County Government YouTube account is thirteen minutes longer than the Library YouTube of the identical candidate forum, THE CHESAPEAKE TODAY asked Sheriff Candidate John O’Connor to review the segment in which he was a participant to look for possible discrepancies.