Grand Jury Expands JT Burnette Indictment to Include Mckibbon Hotel Group Vote

Grand Jury Expands JT Burnette Indictment to Include Mckibbon Hotel Group Vote

Today a federal grand jury returned a nine-count superseding indictment against John Thomas Burnette, 42, of Tallahassee, Florida. Burnette was originally indicted in May, 2019.

The superseding indictment relates to a controversial vote by the Tallahassee City Commission on a potential hotel development in 2014 involving the Mckibbon Hotel Group.

Several facts laid out in the federal indictment were first reported by Tallahassee Reports in two articles published in 2013 and 2014.

TR first reported about the relationship between Gary Yordon, a Scott Maddox business associate at the time, and the Mckibbon Hotel Group. The article focused on Yordon’s failure to register as a lobbyist.

The second articled focused on City Commissioner Scott Maddox’s conflict of interest.

After the articles were published, Dr. Erwin Jackson filed an ethics complaint with the Florida Commission on Ethics. The complaint was dismissed.

The superseding indictment alleges that, in early 2014, Burnette caused a company to pay $110,000 in exchange for Maddox declaring a conflict and not voting at a Tallahassee City Commission meeting.

At that meeting, the Commission was slated to vote on an extension sought by a hotel development group to allow more time to meet certain City requirements to build a hotel close to a downtown hotel owned by Burnette. Maddox’s failure to participate resulted in a 2-2 tie vote by the Commission that denied the hotel development group the extension it sought and ended its project.

Read the US Attorney release here.

Burnette’s trial is scheduled for November 4th, 2019.

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24 Responses to "Grand Jury Expands JT Burnette Indictment to Include Mckibbon Hotel Group Vote"

  1. Avatar
    Stanley Sims   October 2, 2019 at 9:31 pm

    Good job Steve… No article on the Mayor’s chilling performance towards the Ethics Chairman?

    Reply
    • Avatar
      Hope   October 2, 2019 at 9:48 pm

      I guess the mayor didn’t have his nap that day because he had one temper tantrum that was so bizarre it brings into question his leadership ability.

      Reply
    • Avatar
      Snidely Whiplash   October 4, 2019 at 12:42 pm

      A quick review of other local media outlets indicates this latest information on Burnett is not even being covered.
      It’s all about Dan Markel’s murder trial.
      If you really think it thru the outcome of Markel’s trial has Zero % impact on our communitty.
      Burnett, Maddox, Carter-Smith’s crimes and legal outcomes do have a big impact on our communitty.
      That’s gotta say something about our local media’s priorities.

      Reply
  2. Avatar
    Hope   October 2, 2019 at 9:37 pm

    I remember when Steve Stewart and Erwin Jackson were on this and brought it to light.

    It is a blessing that the federal authorities picked up on this and are providing citizens relief and restoring order and confidence.

    It is still so amazing to me how evil was the standard and elected officials were diametrically opposed to righteousness and following the law.

    Had the supervisors of Elections office done their job and not allowed Mr. Maddox to be placed on the ballot because of his residency issue it is possible this all could have been avoided.

    See how not following some of the smaller rules can lead to devastating consequences. The supervisor of of Elections office didn’t allow a republican to be on the ballot because of paperwork yet the supervisors of Elections office allowed three Democrats to be on the ballot and get elected even though they did not live in the required District.

    Steve Stewart and Erwin Jackson are truly Heroes. It was sad to watch Mr Maddox berate them and call them mentally ill because they questioned the vast corruption. I hope they receive a public apology from every single commissioner who was on the board at that time.

    Reply
    • Avatar
      More indictments coming   October 3, 2019 at 9:52 pm

      FBI – good job; now keep going and go back to CITY HALL. Maddox didn’t do this inside job by himself! Look at all the cohorts who got this off the ground to get Maddox’s work job done; COT Legal,COT Management (Favors, Fernandez, Goad, Barber, etc). Communications, Blueprint, Planning, Permitting, Inspection. Look into who else was making $ on construction and building WHILE employees of the City. You’ll be absolutely amazed! Look at the Real Estate deals where City Employees directly profited. It was/remains a very well guarded secret….; you’ll be amazed. As well the grand jury.

      Reply
      • Avatar
        Jonathan Anderson   October 5, 2019 at 6:37 am

        I agree with you and your comments. Much more to be peeled back in this probe. I have a question, was an FBI agent fired from the Jacksonville office from misconduct in Gillums investigation.

        Reply
        • Avatar
          TAPPing, Gently TAPPing   October 5, 2019 at 11:27 am

          Now FBI – Take a deeper DIVE into Yordan’s involvement with the TAPP program and how $ was funneled to/through him (Governance?) via Commissioner Nancy Miller via her husband John Buss (COT Director of Stormwater & highest paid employee at COT, coincidentally) who paid his fiancée Miller for ‘running’ TAPP. It’s a tidy indictment package. This program was transferred to Cynthia Barber’s Environmental group to create a financial track barrier. Basically TAPP was funding Yordan’s commercials, Miller’s Pre-Commission run and ‘advertisement’. By the way – WHY DOES MADDOX STILL HAVE HIS CITY RETIREMENT? Will he need in the Federal Penn?

          Reply
  3. Avatar
    Snidely Whiplash   October 2, 2019 at 10:27 pm

    Your are so right Hope.
    I think we may have still had good ‘Ole Ion Sancho back in the 2013/14 time. Sancho a dyed in the wool Democrat had his nose so far up the butts of local politicians he could not smell out any corruption even if it wafted up his nose. Yeah he allowed Maddox to live outside his district and set the precedent for Proctor to run the southside while living in his palatial Buckhead estate. Thanks alot Sancho.

    Reply
    • Avatar
      News Maven   October 3, 2019 at 5:27 am

      Spot on, Snidester!
      https://www.tallahassee.com/story/news/2016/09/14/where-do-they-live/90347264/
      Alan Williams, Mayor Marx, Maddox, and Buckhead Bill all got passes on their residencies.
      Remember when Buckhead Bill ripped Ion with his “any other ‘cho” slur? That rev’runt, what a class act.

      Reply
    • Avatar
      News Maven   October 3, 2019 at 5:44 am

      https://tallahasseereports.com/2013/09/05/mckibbon-hotel-group-consultant-communicated-with-staff-without-registering-as-a-city-lobbyist/
      Will the FBI indict Usual Suspect Yordon too?
      And what about our favorite unindicted co-conspirator Bob Garbagi?

      Reply
      • Avatar
        Snidely Whiplash   October 3, 2019 at 9:29 am

        Keep an eye on what Bill Proctor slung out yesterday.
        He’s asking the State to investigate 7 years of price gouging by local hotels on football weekends.
        Quite likely a turd being specifically slung in the direction of J T Burnett who owned the Hotel Duval in that time period.
        Bill knows something about J T being involved and also Bill knows the FBI has no jurisdiction over Florida price gouging.
        I’m not sure exactly what J T did to whizz Bill off.
        But I’m thinking right now that J T is wishing he never did whatever he did that whizzed Bill off.

        Reply
        • Avatar
          Hope   October 3, 2019 at 1:24 pm

          It is FAMU Homecoming and Proctor does not believe he has to follow the rules like everyone else and pay market value for the rooms.

          If I go to a Resort there are periods that are more expensive than others and sometimes the weekends are a higher price than weekdays. I don’t call a press conference and demand the FBI do something about it.

          Much Ado About Nothing Mr Proctor.

          Reply
      • Avatar
        News Maven   October 3, 2019 at 4:44 pm

        https://www.tallahassee.com/story/news/local/2019/10/02/witnesses-appear-before-federal-grand-jury-tallahassee-public-corruption-probe/3841995002/
        “Among those spotted going into the courthouse were Gary Yordon, a one-time friend of Maddox and former employee of his Governance, Inc., firm…
        Yordon, a political ad man, TV talk show host and former Leon County commissioner, acknowledged as he walked up the courthouse steps that he was appearing before the grand jury, which operates in secret. He was accompanied by his lawyer, Greg Noonan of Tallahassee.
        “I’m a witness,” he said. “That’s all I can tell you. In my capacity as a witness, I’ve been asked not to discuss what I witnessed.”
        Yordon walked out of the courthouse a couple of hours later, though he said his appearance before the grand jury was brief, perhaps only 20 minutes long.
        “It was interesting,” said Yordon, who writes a regular column in the Tallahassee Democrat.”
        ——
        So if Yordon ever gets sent up the river, will the city add vertical black bars to his giant-sized self-promo ad at the airport terminal?

        Reply
        • Avatar
          Hope   October 4, 2019 at 5:50 am

          So, didn’t Gary Yordon just violate a court order regarding speaking about his testifying?

          Keep talking Gary, “Loose lips sink ships.”
          .
          While you’re talking why don’t you tell us how much you pay and show us the contract for your personal advertising at the airport?

          Reply
      • Avatar
        Hope   October 3, 2019 at 10:34 pm

        I’m surprised Gannett didn’t monitor the amount of free coverage Gabordi was giving to Maddox.

        Reply
        • Avatar
          News Maven   October 4, 2019 at 7:03 pm

          I’m not, Hope.
          They’re all about the Benjamins.
          Their so-called ethics policy is just for using against low-level employees who stray from the agenda, and longtime staffers who, in their bean-counter world, make too much money.
          Upper management can be as unethical as they want, as long as they’re taking enough money out of their communities and sending it to the C-Suite in Maclean, VA.
          I expect the next shocking announcement from Magnolia Drive to be about which days of the week they WILL NO LONGER PRINT a newsletter. Pittsburgh just axed Mondays, pi$$ing off the Steelers fans.

          Reply
  4. Avatar
    Gabriel   October 3, 2019 at 7:02 am

    No wonder FBI set up shop in Tallahassee, it needs a D&C! Deep suction of embedded corruption from prior years.
    Trying to understand how on earth these people got elected repeatedly? Guess they were aided and abetted by criminal cohorts and no one including local media “democrap” had the courage to call this out except Mr. Steve Stewart and Dr. Erwin Jackson. Others who are complicit in support of Maddox and criminal pals are silently hoping they do not rat them out. Maddox, Burnette and Corey are taking down everyone in their orbit. Their proverbial HALO has become a perk walk NOOSE. Expect more shoes to drop! Great job FBI and prosecute them all US Attorney Lawrence Keefe.

    Reply
  5. Avatar
    James   October 3, 2019 at 7:14 am

    Remember all liberals lie, cheat and steal.

    Reply
  6. Avatar
    Mike   October 3, 2019 at 8:44 am

    So another indictment rolls out – I’m hoping that the list keeps growing and all the participants in the local corruption cabal are eventually reeled in and charged. Now if all the local Democrat liberals will learn and stop voting corrupt Democrat liberals into office, we might actually get an ethical, responsible government one day, instead of corrupt officials and cronies determined to run pay-to-play schemes and shakedowns of companies trying to do business in the city (which is the government we’ve had in Tally for a decade or so).

    Reply
    • Avatar
      David T. Hawkins   October 3, 2019 at 3:46 pm

      YES, Corruption and Pay to Play has to GO. I believe in a STRONG Ethics Board and I think Erwin Jackson and Steve Stewart would be great on that Board, if they wont do it, I hope they get several just like them. When people go to the Commission Meetings to speak, I can tell you, 3 Minutes is NOT enough time to get your point across. 5 Minutes would be great and I will push for the increase.

      Reply
      • Avatar
        David T. Hawkins   October 3, 2019 at 4:06 pm

        ALSO: I am holding my Campaign Launch Party & Fund Raiser on Wednesday, October 9th at Momo’s Pizza on Market Street. It starts at 5:30 and lasts until about 8:00. Cash Bar BUT, I will supply the Pizza.

        Reply
  7. Pingback: Burnette Trial: Maddox, Carter-Smith Slated to Testify, Vegas Recordings Listed as Exhibits – Tallahassee Reports

  8. Avatar
    TONY   October 7, 2019 at 2:24 pm

    He is now asking for a continuance until February…………

    Reply

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