Bay Township resident threatens armed confrontation over zoning dispute
BY FRED GRAY NEWS-REVIEW STAFF WRITER
The 55-year-old excavator vows that neither he, his family nor the three manufactured housing units in dispute will be removed from his property without a shootout.
Last April District Judge Richard May granted a township request that Barkley be ordered to remove the housing units from his property on Camp Daggett Road.
When Barkley failed to act, May found him in contempt on Aug. 28 and gave him until next Thursday to comply or face 28 days in jail and over $7,800 in fines.
Barkley, who appeared in district court without an attorney, said May's decision at the request of the township amounted to an unconstitutional taking of his property.
He maintained that his property is "patent land" granted to the initial owner in 1871 by President U.S. Grant, and as such he has rights to do with his property as he wants, irrespective of zoning laws. He said May dismissed his argument and said he would not be allowed to appeal the order.
But unlike many who hold patent land and dispute any governmental authority over it, Barkley said he does not challenge the right of government to tax his land.
"I pay my taxes," he said. "But Judge May called my personal property junk, and so I feel I don't have to pay taxes on junk."
Barkley, a native of Charlevoix County, and his daughter, Kim, 22, live in separate houses on the property, and both are subject to the court order. They have extensive files on the dispute that go back years.
Barkley's predicament has drawn the attention of Norman Olson of Alanson, senior adviser to the Michigan Militia, and Rick Stanley, leader of the Denver-based Second American Revolution Militia "Mutual Defense Pact."
Olson issued a press release on Thursday, urging citizens throughout Michigan to become aware of what is taking place and to speak out in an attempt to forestall or stop armed conflict.
"Lyle Barkley is unlikely to run. He's preparing to defend. I admire his spirit," Olson said, adding he did not expect an armed confrontation to occur as a result of the court deadline.
"These deadlines come and go. It's a bunch of hype. But the situation stinks of crooked politics, corruption and favors," Olson said.
Stanley, reached in Denver, said Barkley is a member of his organization and could expect 670 armed supporters, including two dozen in Michigan, to come to his assistance within four days of the onset of an armed confrontation.
"Once he's defended himself and repelled any attack, we'll send our militia, the largest in the U.S.," Stanley said. But he said he considered it unlikely.
Charlevoix County Sheriff George T. Lasater said that as the chief law enforcement officer for the court, he would do whatever was required. But he said he did not anticipate the dispute would come to armed confrontation.
"I don't see this mushrooming out of control," Lasater said. "We'll do everything in our power to make sure there are no injuries, including to police officers, citizens and Lyle Barkley and his family."
Lasater said Barkley had sent him a notice over the weekend that if he trespassed on his property, he would be assessed a civil penalty of $1 million "to be paid in silver coin."
Lasater said on one previous occasion in the county several years ago a half dozen armed members of a militia group did appear to back a landowner, but the matter was settled peacefully.
Township supervisor Larry Moeschke and trustee Chris Monk said in an interview today that the township considers the matter one of compliance with the township zoning ordinance.
"Before he brought the manufactured homes in, he already had two single-wide homes legally on the property," Moeschke said. "He ultimately brought in two additional single-wide mobile homes and what we call a modular school house for a total of what we consider to be five homes on the property.
"The Bay Township zoning ordinance allows one single family residence but he was able to bring in the second home in the mid-1990s under a caretaker clause."
"What he was doing was not what he applied for," Monk said, adding: "There is no agenda, no favors. We're merely trying to keep the character of Bay Township."
Moeschke said the township doesn't have a blight ordinance.
"We're not trying to dictate to anyone in the township how their property should appear. All we want is simply compliance with our zoning ordinance," he said.
County building official Ken Doty said, "If there are no zoning permits and health department permits in place, we cannot issue building permits. It's that simple."
Randy Frykberg, the township zoning administrator, said the matter has been settled in court and is a matter of public record. He said he would have no further comment.
Fred Gray can be contacted firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rick Stanley web site: http://www.stanley2002.org
Michigan Militia we site: http://www.michiganmilitia.com/
Rick Stanley, Constitutional Activist, former U.S. Senate candidate, Enemy of the State, and self avowed extremist on the order of our forefathers of America, gave the following updated media release on the Boyne, Michigan situation:
I spoke with Lyle Barkley, the Pact member in Michigan that is the focus of the Preliminary Alert, and several things happened yesterday to potentially ease the situation there. First, the Governor came down to his property, toured the grounds, and assured Lyle Barkley that everything the state could do to defuse the situation, would be attempted. A legal team has been assembled, on behalf of the Barkleys from across the country, to help the Barkleys, and the Barkleys were headed to court this morning, to try and obtain an emergency injunction, to prevent the County Sheriff from doing anything regarding his property.
The FBI has been involved and now believes that Mr Barkley has civil rights violations against him by the Charlevoix County Bay Township and the Court, will be forming an investigative team and will possibly be filing indictments against anyone violating the Barkleys rights, and applying pressure to the local government, to make the situation come to a more palatable conclusion, than the potential violence against Mr Barkley by the government police powers, followed by a response by the Mutual Defense Pact Militia, in partnership with the Michigan Militia at the site.
Many individuals from across the country have expressed interest in coming to the Barkley and militia defense, if the government does not back down regarding this issue. The 675 Pact members from across the country and the 150 members of the Michigan Militia are still under PRELIMINARY ALERT: to be prepared to come to the Michigan site in defense of the Barkleys, however it appears that this alert may be on the verge of standing down, if and when the government does the right thing and backs down. The County Sheriff still has the position that he will bring his police state powers to bear on the situation, should there not be a change from the County Court.
The Pact and Michigan Militia are still prepared to respond to Mr Barkley's defense of his person, family, and property regarding this unconstitutional action, by the Charlevoix County Bay Township government in Michigan. The District Court of the County has ordered the removal of three manufactured homes, from four acres of the Barkley property on Camp Dagget Road, by this coming Thursday, September 18, 2003. Mr Barkley has promised a stand-off, which would trigger the action by the Michigan Militia and the Mutual Defense Pact Militia, from across the country, in Barkley's defense.
On a lighter note, Lyle and Kim Barkley signed an avadavit "To Whom it may concern" on the 13th of September which says the following: "I have spoken with Rick Stanley and he has assured me that there will not be any heavy artillery here. We have not declared war. I am just seeking the support of the militia to protect my constitutional rights and land for myself and my family. We are working on a brief to be filed Monday to bring this to a peaceful end. We do not want any harm to come to anyone."
Rick Stanley said, "Someone apparently took my statement that Charlevoix County Bay Towhship would become the center of the universe, if the Barkleys were attacked by government, to mean that we would be bringing in the "heavy artillery", in defense of the Barkleys. Pretty amusing, is it not? They must have thought we were going to bring in the navy as well, and all sit around the campfire with sparklers, telling ghost stories".
The information below was in response to a Pact member from Texas, who was concerned that the Pact was not getting due respect from the Michigan Militia in this situation at the Barkleys. The Michigan Militia and the Mutual Defense Pact Militia are two distinctly autonomous organizations, interested in only the defense of Mr Barkley, his family and his property.
There are no misunderstandings between the leadership of the Michigan Militia and the Mutual Defense Pact Militia. Rick Stanley makes the following comment about the concerns of one of the Pact members: "This particular Pact member has had many concerns regarding the Pact, from before he joined and after. This individual appears to want to have organizational control over the Pact, and is uncomfortable with not being intimately involved in the inner workings of the alerts and the operational decisions of the Pact. He is an individual who either does not understand the concept of the Pact, or one who likes to disrupt the situation.
He has been advised in the past and now in this instance, not to be a disruptive influence in Pact leadership decisions anymore, or he will be asked to resign from the Pact. This type of incident, is unique so far to the Pact, but has not been unique in other state militias that have been infiltrated and problems are an ongoing occurance. While not wanting to believe this individual is a provacatuer, it has been a suggestion in the past, and a close eye will be kept on this individual in the future".
From: "Rick Stanley" email@example.com