By Dave Pearce
According to information received recently from Posey County Sheriff Greg Oeth, Posey County Prosecutor Travis Clowers, and Posey County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Jonathan Parkhurst, something rare could be brewing in the case of Brandon McManomy.
McManomy was found guilty a few weeks ago by a Posey County jury of attempted murder, aggravated battery, battery resulting in serious bodily injury and resisting law enforcement for slashing the face of a Posey County Sheriff’s deputy in 2011. The trial was held in Posey Superior Court.
A company, whose number shows up on caller identification as K&B International, has allegedly been making calls to some random Posey County residents. According to information researched by area officials, the company is a jury research firm operating in the State of Texas.
“When we listened to the jail phone calls of McManomy, his family indicated they were going to try to overturn this conviction by hiring private investigators to research the jurors and see if they could find a way,” Clowers said. “Maybe they could find that one of the jurors went to church with officer Montgomery or something along that line. I think they are calling people to see if they can find a way to overturn this case.”
But Sheriff Greg Oeth’s home and Chief Deputy Sheriff Melvin Buchanan’s home also received the calls, leading Parkhurst to believe that the company has been hired in regards to the civil suit, which is expected to be upcoming.
Clowers said the purpose of the calls has been consistent as several Posey residents have reported receiving the calls and were given a survey about criminal justice in Posey County.
“They have asked ‘What is your opinion of the prosecutor?’ and ‘What are your opinions of the sheriff’,” Clowers explained. “They ask about a few different cases. They have asked about the Timothy Lear case, and the Steven Brakie cases, but then they focus mainly on the McManomy case from what I understand.”
Clowers explained that the last reference point of the calls that have been reported have asked the respondents, “Did you know that the Posey County Sheriff is considering suing the McManomy family.”
Clowers acknowledged that a civil suit may be forthcoming because the knife McManomy was using to stab himself was also used to slice the neck of the deputy.
“When you have someone who serves on a jury or could potentially serve on a jury, it would be nice if we could make it as painless as possible but it seems that these Posey County residents feel as if they are being harassed by these calls,” Clowers said.
Clowers said he called the Texas firm and was told that the person who answered the phone told him that they could not talk to him and that they would need to get a supervisor on the phone.
Clowers then said that a person who identified himself as a supervisor also told Clowers he could not talk to him and that he would have to get a higher supervisor to return the call to Clowers. As of Sunday evening, Clowers had received no such call.
Clowers said he was unaware as to how the firm had gotten the names.
McManomy is already serving a 15-year sentence in Kentucky for an Aug. 31, 2010, attack on a Murray, Ky., woman. Kentucky law requires that he serve 20 percent — three years in his case — before he is eligible for parole in that case and then could be returned to serve his Indiana sentence.