Witnesses and attorneys in the bingo bribery trial have talked a lot about a former member of the Alabama House of Representatives named Terry Spicer. Former lobbyist Jarrod Massey has testified he bribed Spicer for years–Massey would give Spicer monthly payments of about $3,000, and, in exchange, Spicer helped Massey get lobbying contracts.
“I did pay Mr. Spicer,” Massey testified Wednesday from the witness stand “I did bribe Mr. Spicer.”
But Spicer (D-Elba), now the superintendent of Elba City Schools, is not one of the nine defendants in this case, and it’s not yet known if will be charged with a crime.
Massey, a former lobbyist for gambling developer Ronnie Gilley, pleaded guilty to bribing legislators to get them to vote in favor of pro-gambling legislation. His plea agreement protects him from prosecution for the alleged crimes related to Spicer so long as Massey complies with the term of his plea agreement.
Spicer was a friend of Massey’s. According to Massey, Spicer read scripture in Massey’s wedding, and was invited on Massey family trips. He helped Massey land lobbying contracts. Starting in 2001 or 2002, Spicer provided Massey “some kind of assistance” in getting 14 or 15 contracts, Massey said in court.
“I compensated Mr. Spicer for his assistance in getting me contracts,” Massey testified.
When Jim Parkman, an attorney for defendant Sen. Harri Anne Smith (I-Slocomb), asked on Friday why Massey paid Spicer, Massey said “he asked me to compensate him.”
“Considering he asked, that’s probably why I did it,” Massey said.
“He asked you to pay him?” Parkman asked.
Massey testified that he paid Spicer about $3,000 monthly in cash. Massey said he would usually leave the money somewhere in an envelope.
“Usually I would put it some kind of envelope — a regular envelope, a banker envelope,” Massey said.
Aside from the monthly cash payments, Massey provided Spicer with tickets to the BamaJam music festival, Iron Bowl tickets, use of Massey’s Capitol City Club account, about $9,000 which may have been used to buy a boat, and rides in alcohol-stocked limos. Massey indicated he accompanied Spicer on the limo rides.
Massey testified that the monthly payments stopped around 2008: “It was sometime around the two-year college investigation at some point,” Massey said in testimony Wednesday.
In a Nov. 2010 editorial in the Dothan Eagle, Spicer was described as a possible “poster boy for the legislature’s controversial ban on lawmakers holding state office while working for the two-year college system.”
Spicer has not responded to requests for comment from other members of the press.
On Wednesday, one juror accidentally got a copy of a proffer Spicer made to the FBI attached to a set of other exhibits. The existence of the document suggests Spicer may be cooperating with the FBI. U.S. District Court Judge Myron Thompson instructed the jury to disregard the item.
Cross examination of Jarrod Massey continues this afternoon.
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