Clearwater Picket Report 3/17/01
18 Mar 2001
Mike Krotz <TampaPI@verizonmail.com>

This picket began at about 2:30 p.m., with a brief protest in the area of the Coachman building. The group then moved to the area across from the Ft. Harrison. Randy had control of the posterboard megaphone, and alternated between, "No OTs there, if there were any OTs you would not be hearing my voice," and singing,"Happy birthday to Ron, we're glad you are gone, you died while on psych drugs, but the con still lives on."

There were numerous horn honks and waves, proportionately more of them than I have noted on past occasions. There were a few middle fingers as well, and a few shouts of "get a life." Antonio was the reliable camera shadow that we all have come to know.

Paul Kellerhaus appeared in the doorway of the Ft. Harrison, and was on his mobile phone right away. Soon a Clearwater police cruiser arrived and parked near the front of the Ft. Harrison. After a long conversation with Kellerhaus and Antonio, the officer walked across the street and spoke with Randy. She was very cordial and explained that Kellerhaus was complaining about the noise, but that she noted that Randy was no louder than passing traffic. She explained that no laws were being violated, and Randy was exercising his first amendment rights. She then returned to her cruiser and remained there while the protest continued. A short time later, another officer arrived, spoke with her, and then approached us. He simply asked that everyone be careful with their signs, to be sure they did not protrude into traffic.

A group of kids on skateboards passed by the area, and one young boy approached our group with some questions. He said that he was Christian but has Scientology friends, and he seemed honestly concerned. I only overheard part of the conversation, but I believe he was told of some websites to visit for more information.

We then went to the Hacienda Gardens, the housing area on Saturn St. I noticed a sliver Dodge Omni shadowing us, and this vehicle continued as a shadow at an extreme distance the rest of the day. As we walked around the South side of the complex, Randy pointed out a new camera that had been installed so that it protruded out over the sidewalk. It was one of those in a tinted protective bubble, and as we walked under it, you could see it pan and follow our activity. I also noted the numerous cameras on the buildings, and the motion detectors all over the fence. Strangely enough, the motion detectors are all pointed inward, evidently to alert security to any attempted escapees.

As we came back around to the West side of the complex, a man approached us from the South. He was process server Pete Thornburg. Pete was very polite, and showed us his identification. He specifically sought out Lisa and gave her a copy of the injunction. He then gave a copy to another protester, who has picketed before but is not a frequent attendee. Pete did not know this protester's name, and did not ask it. As this protester said later, "How are they going to notify me, call me the black m**********r with the hat?"

Shortly after this, we walked back to the car as Pete continued to hang in the parking lot, talking on his mobile phone. He walked near us and I told him that normally a process server leaves after delivering their paperwork. He then approached Randy and asked Randy if he was Mike Krotz. Randy was somewhat evasive, and Pete acted as if he had met me in December, tho he was talking to Randy. Tim then spoke up and said that HE was Mike Krotz, but that he had been at the beach, which really puzzled Pete. Obviously nobody bothered to describe me to Pete. Randy asked Pete if he was a PI and he replied that he was not.

About this time, a Clearwater police cruiser pulled up. The officer asked what was going on and Pete told him what he was doing, and then Pete took off. The officer spoke with us for a few minutes, explaining that someone from the Hacienda had called in a complaint. He too seemed quite cordial, and even shared some personal stories about Scientology from when he worked the downtown beat.

We then went to the Sandcastle. Shortly after we arrived, process server Pete returned, and handed Randy a copy of the injunction. Pete explained that he was instructed to serve Randy as Mike Krotz. We all laughed and told him he had the wrong person, but he said it wasn't his problem and he then left. Randy continued with the megaphone, thanking the frequent passersby that were waving and honking. We noticed a couple of Scientology kids were playing in a swimming pool area near the sidewalk where we were protesting. These kids were about 10 years old or so, and after they heard Randy on the megaphone, they began shouting various insults laced with foul language. Someone remarked that they sounded exactly like the OT comittee handlers, except maybe a little more mature. After about 10 minutes of this, a woman came out and talked with the kids, and they were quiet from then on.

We were just preparing to leave when process server Pete returned again, this time pulling his vehicle right up to where I was standing (parking in a traffic lane, facing the wrong way!). He got out of his vehicle and called my name, handing me a copy of the injunction as he did so. I thanked him and told him that I was glad he finally got the job done. Randy asked him if he worked for Colton, and Pete replied, "Colton and Associates?" which at least proved that he knows of the company. Pete continued to assert that he was self employed, and referred us to Wally Pope via the documents in the injunction.

We then drove to the Lisa McPherson Trust and those with picket signs stored them there. Mark Bunker was in his studio editing some video, and we gave him some clips from the day. I again saw the silver Neon with its 2 occupants watching us from Garden Street as we walked to the trust. I tried to run to the end of the block to get a tag number, but they drove past before I could get there. About that time, Paul Kellerhaus drove by in a black Honda, with several people in the vehicle with him.

So there were no OT handlers, which is not surprising due to the injunction. Wally Pope's office, or whoever is coordinating getting copies of the injunction out, seemed quite interested in getting me served with a copy of it. Let it be known that while it took three tries, Pete finally served the right person! I still would like to know why this applies to me, as I only run videotape and occasionally talk to people during these pickets. I plan to call Pope's office next week and have a conversation about that. Maybe they are concerned for my welfare, and want to prevent Dennis Clark or others like him from assaulting me.

I hope I didn't leave out any details...I haven't reviewed all my videotape so there might be a few things I forgot to include here. This was a "non-LMT" picket, with nobody from the trust in attendance- just 6 concerned citizens. (I hope this more detailed account satisfies SteveJ, even though I continued with writing it in "first person.")

I have posted a couple of pictures from this picket on the following page. As time allows, I will add a few more images from the day (be patient, nbci can be a bit slow and glitchy sometimes).




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