Thursday, January 22, 2015
Portland's Former Mayor, Billie Golden, Facing Harsh Penalty Over Junk Yard
Back when Ron had his own radio show, Billie was one of his regular callers. He was always pleasant - a trusting and live and let live kind of guy. He has authored a book, but the person who was going to publish it for him seems to have disappeared after taking his money. Nobody is after that guy. Instead, it's Billie who's in hot water. He's facing a million years in the electric chair over a junk yard at his property.
I've never seen it. Then again, neither has Billie. He's blind as a bat. But his neighbors have. Sometimes, they sometimes get upset and complain. Other times, they help clean things up.
This junk yard, if you want to call it that, exists because that is where his two sons store things until they have enough to go to a scrap metal yard. A little slow, this is how they make a living. They walk along the sides of roads, collecting cans or scrap metal that no one wants.
One of these brothers loves to go to church. Doesn't matter what kind. Families sometimes pick him up and take him along. They say he lights up God's house with his smile.
Sometimes, these fellows make mistakes. They will take metal they think is being tossed. They once took radiators that were outside of Duckloe's Furniture Store. The radiators were sitting right where the garbage is placed, and the brothers mistakenly assumed this was garbage. Billie tells me that it was an honest mistake.
For those of you looking for a second career, Billie assures me that the state of Pennsylvania allows you to take anything that is left for the garbage man.
Once this garbage reaches a certain point, Billie gets cited. He's facing charges right now for operating a dump. He tells me that he's been found guilty, and is awaiting sentence.
A rumor began circulating earlier this week that authorities are so worked up that Golden is facing a major fine and possible jail time. but that makes no sense. A verdict and sentence must be announced immediately after a summary trial. If Billie was previously found guilty, and the court delayed the sentence for whatever reason, it is unable to impose any sentence now.
I asked Ron Angle, who is friends with Billie, to find out what is going on. He told me he's been muzzled by court order, just like Kathleen Kane. But he still has a great defense for blind Billie. "Just tell the judge you threw your garbage and it missed the can," he advised.
DA John Morganelli would like to see an Elder Abuse Task Force established. What is happening to Billie demonstrates clearly why this is needed. Ageism is the one acceptable form of discrimination. Billie lost already lost money to some con artist. Hios property might be a mess, but this is a problem that could be addressed by the County's Department of Aging.
I hope he gets a break,and will be following this story.