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Sometimes They Eat Their Own: The O'Reilly Factor Savages Republican D.A. Brad King

Reported by Marie Therese - April 26, 2005

As News Hound Ellen reported on April 8, 2005 Bill O'Reilly has turned his attack dogs loose on yet another District Attorney. This time it turned out to be a Republican - Florida State District Attorney Brad King. And what, pray tell, has the hapless Mr. King done to arouse the wrath of the King of Mean? According to O'Reilly's guests yesterday (4/25/05), Brad King is on his way to political oblivion because he refused to prosecute three people living in the trailer near which the body of Jessica Lunsford was found. Shouts of "Throw the bum out!" now resound throughout the state of Florida. Ah, but is Bill telling his audience the whole truth about his vendetta? Could there be another, more subtle reason why FOX News and Florida's conservative talk radio hosts have turned on Brad King?

O'REILLY: ...[Brad] King says he would not win a conviction if he charges the three. We say: 'So what?! Send a message!' And millions of you agree with us. King is under tremendous pressure as he showed in a radio interview last week.

AUDIO CLIP of a very emotional Brad King, aired 4/21/05, WFLA-AM: "For anybody to say that I don't take seriously my obligation does not know me at all. For anybody to say that I don't care about children, knows me even less. I've got four of my own. One of them is eight years old. We adopted her because we loved her and wanted to provide a way for her to grow up in a situation different that the situation she was in. So, the only hurt that comes out of this for me is somebody saying publicly 'Well, he doesn't care about what happens to children." [End clip.]

O'Reilly, heartless as ever, sensing blood in the water, spent the next four minutes eviscerating Mr. King, ably assisted by radio ralk show host Pat Campbell of WFLA-AM. His other guest, Mike Carr, former deputy sheriff, former prosecutor and current defense attorney, was a bit more reasonable.

CAMPBELL: ... I can only describe [King's interview] as bizarre ... He broke down twice during the interview. He's taking this way too personally. Really, .. this coupled with the Buddy Dyer indictment - the mayor of Orlando - the indictment which was withdrawn last week - it really calls into question Brad King's judgment. In fact my listeners have inundated Gov. Jeb Bush with a request to pull Brad King's office off this case and to appoint a Special Prosecutor. We heard back from the Governor last week. Unfortunately, he's pulling a little Pontius Pilate action on us, washing his hands clean [saying] he doesn't have ... under the State Constitution the authority to intervene in this case, which I don't necessarily buy, because he did appoint Brad King as a Special Prosecutor to look into the whole issue of voter fraud in Orlando.

O'REILLY: ... So you're saying that the local pressure where he lives in Ocala, Florida is as intense as the national pressure that we're putting on him.

CAMPBELL: Oh, absolutely and I wanna thank you and your program in particular because you're really puttin' the spotlight on him and, if it wasn't for your show, I don't know that we would even have gotten the twenty-minute sit-down interview ... He's under tremendous pressure right now.

O'REILLY: ... I want everybody to know we have nothing against Brad King and we checked him out and he looks like a pretty solid guy .. He's just made a (sic) awful mistake and it looks like he's just too proud to admit it.

Mike Carr then entered the fray playing Curly to O'Reilly's Moe and Campbell's Larry!

CARR: What you need to look at is the knowledge of the people involved, when they committed any acts which may have helped the person who committed these crimes ... If they had knowledge that a reasonable person would use to say "This person committed a crime of murder or child molesting, then they're guilty of being an accessory ..."

O'REILLY: I don't want to go through the law book but certainly you could make a case that a convicted sex offender hiding in a trailer might be a person of interest to the police!

And later O'Reilly continued: "He's sayin' he can't get a conviction. That's what King is saying ... We believe and the police believe that Jessica Lunsford was in this trailer alive."

Mike Carr noted that the prosecutors should have tried to turn one of the three against the other two, then he reiterated his earilier comment that, under the law, "actual knowledge is what you have to prove in a court of law" to which Bill O'Reilly responded: "You've got to be aggressive! You've got to be aggressive!"

Pat Campbell jumped in saying "On that interview with Brad King, he told our newsperson .. that there is no law against aiding and abetting in Florida, which is absolute hogwash."

As Campbell said this, Mike Carr clearly did not agree. He shook his head, raised his hand a bit and indicated that he wanted to offer a response. Instead, Mr. Bill - who must always have the last word - ended the segment by saying: "Right. We all know that there is [such a law]. This guy made a mistake ... and he's got to rectify the mistake!"


1. O'Reilly clearly wants to waste Florida taxpayer money to bring three people to trial, before a judge who would, in all likelihood, simply throw the case out of court. You'd think the Billster would know about these things. Look what happened when he and FOX News brought a lawsuit against Al Franken for copyright infringement. They were trying to "send a message" and ended up getting laughed out of court by the judge!

2. Throughout this segment there was an assumption that Brad King did not indict because he had not used any of the normal interrogation and investigative procedures available to the District Attorney's office. This is patently absurd. As a Republican, a father and a conscientious prosecutor, Mr. King would have been very motivated to find a way to indict these three people. It is to his credit that - instead of putting on a dog and pony show for the mob - he adhered to the law. To read his rationale for not bringing charges, click here.

3. Over the course of the past week I've noticed striking similarities in the way FOX News (through its shill, Bill O'Reilly) has handled this assault on Brad King and their attacks on Atlanta's D.A., Paul Howard.

According to an article in the March 11, 2005 edition of the Sun-Sentinel:

"In a day of swift and stunning developments triggered by four grand jury indictments, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer was charged with violating state absentee ballot law during last year's mayor's race and quickly removed from office.

Dyer, his campaign manager Patti Sharp, accused ballot broker Ezzie Thomas and Circuit Judge Alan Apte braved a phalanx of news reporters at the jail this morning as they entered a booking area to be fingerprinted and processed.

Florida Gov. Jeb Bush suspended the mayor this afternoon, issuing an executive order prohibiting Dyer 'from performing any official act, duty, or function of public office.'

Orlando's city attorney concluded that a special election should be held in the next two months to replace Dyer with a temporary mayor while Dyer fights the charges. Mayor Pro Tem Ernest Page, who coincidentally was suspended from the Orlando City Council in the 1980s and eventually served time in jail, will take over until the election.

Dyer, Sharp and Apte are each accused of 'providing pecuniary gain for absentee ballot possession or collection,' according to their arrest affidavits. Thomas -- who was hired by Dyer's and Apte's campaigns -- was charged with 'accepting' payment. A 1998 state law prohibits paying someone or being paid for collecting absentee ballots.


"The charges are without merit and are totally politically motivated," Dyer said this afternoon, relying on a 'vague Florida statute that has never been applied.' Dyer, a Democrat, was first elected mayor in 2003. Brad King, the special prosecutor who conducted the investigation, is a Republican."

Apparently, Mayor Dyer was correct. On April 20th, Brad King suddenly dropped all charges against Buddy Dyer, just weeks before a special election.

As is clear from his comments above, WFLA talk show host Pat Campbell was unhappy about this turn of events.

Which leads me to ask some questions.

Could it be that the conservative Republican machine is just a little miffed with Mr. King's refusal to follow through on the prosecution of a prominent Florida Democrat?

Is it possible that the O'Reilly smear campaign is motivated by something more than just moral outrage?

As we learned while working on OUTFOXED, FOX News management controls FOX News content and keeps the talent on a tight leash. Did the word come down from on-high to target Brad King with the aim of punishing him for following the law rather than the RNC party line?

Is there another candidate waiting in the wings to take King's job once he's been hounded out of office?

Granted this is all speculation at this point. On the surface, the timeline doesn't fit.

March 25th - Dyer indicted.

April 8th - O'Reilly targets Brad King (after initially getting his name wrong).

April 20th - Charges against Buddy Dyer dropped by Brad King.

Is there proof out there that the Republican Party, FOX bigwigs and/or Bill O'Reilly knew on or before April 8th that the charges against Buddy Dyer were going to be dropped? If so, then perhaps there really is a "hidden agenda" behind O'Reilly's merciless attacks against Brad King and that agenda is payback for perceived "disloyalty" to the Grand Old Party in the state run by the President's brother.

Oh, I am such a nosy Hound .... woof! woof!

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