Skip to comments.Decorated Vietnam Vet Arrested Guarding War Memorial and American Flag in San Diego(#3)
Posted on 11/05/2001 6:36:52 PM PST by B4Ranch
Robert Thomas Northcut is a decorated Vietnam Veteran. In the years that have passed since he was blown up in a delta ambush he spent his time in and out of Veteran's hospitals.
Ten years ago he walked out of the VA hospital never to look back. He found his way to Solana Beach, California where he has lived outside, as a homeless man, never panhandling a dime.
Each day he walks the streets with his trusty German Shepherd, ``TJ,'' given to him by caring townfolks. He always stops to greet people and pat children on their heads as they pet his dog and look in wonderment at this shell of a man, forever wounded serving his country in the war in Vietnam. His Purple Heart went the way of all his belongings when he decided to stop living in a VA hospital and get out and enjoy the beauty of the California coastline with ``TJ.''
His long shaggy Australian bush coat and Crocodile Dundee hat distinguish him for the hero he is as he is seen searching in the morning shadows looking for food.
For ten years Thomas has been the street ambassador of Solana Beach.
When he heard the tragedy of ``9/11'' on his little portable radio he was instantly moved to action. He now had a purpose, a mission, a reason to reestablish his identity. He went to the little traffic island of the City which houses the stone war memorial next to the large American flag pole. He took up residence next to the Memorial, resting his head each night on it to protect it from what he felt was a possible terrorist attack. Each night he lowered the flag and each day raised it to half mast.
Neighbors brought food for him and his dog and brought him newspapers to keep up to date.
It had all come back to him....a purpose, a vision, an identity. He was now back in the line of duty. Every small part helped. His was to raise the flag and to protect the Monument.
Early one morning after he raised the flag, the workmen arrived. As he saluted, they pounded into the ground the two foot square No Trespassing sign. Moments later they called the Sheriff's department and held Thomas there until they arrived.
The city code enforcer ordered a citation to be issued for Thomas Northcut for trespassing. Thomas crumpled it into his pocket and went back to his duties, guarding the monument.
The code enforcer patiently waited for the court appearance date to pass then asked that the arrest warrant be issued.
Thomas and his dog awoke to the angry sounds of deputies as they pulled him from the ground, his hat falling by the side of the Monument and dragged him away in one direction screaming for his dog as they dragged ``TJ'' away to an animal control truck.
Thomas was handcuffed and taken to jail to await arraignment. ``TJ'' was taken to the pound where if unclaimed, he will be put to death in a matter of weeks.
This story did not take place in 1975. It was Thursday, October 26, 2001. Thomas, unable to post the bond, waited in the lockup and had to be sedated because of panic attacks which resulted from his incarceration. Meanwhile, his dog, ``TJ'' has lost his appetite longing for his owner. And the flag just sits at half mast.
``How soon we forget,'' said Sam Georges, an attorney, U.S. Air Force veteran and friend of Northcut's who is trying to get people to help for the jailed vet get released and see that he's reunited with his dog, and in the process sensitize the city. Georges is also president of the internationally famous Anthony Robbins Companies.
``It's pretty obvious that a time like this, we need to show our respect to patriotic Americans to those who have fought to protect our freedoms. Especially those who have worn the uniform of our armed forces and sacrificed for our country,'' said Stephen Jaffe, president Jaffe & Company, a crisis management communications firm in based in Los Angeles.
This morning, Jennifer Lynch, Esq., an attorney living in Vista who heard about the Northcut case from friends, appeared, pro bono, on his behalf in Superior Court. She noted that Northcut has served several days in jail for essentially protecting a Monument to those who had died defending our country during a former war. Northcut remained silent but the Judge, a distinguished veteran himself, saw the sad irony of the case and dismissed it for ``time served.''
``Now there remains only one more injustice to be corrected,'' Lynch stated, ``and that's for Thomas to be reunited with his dog, 'TJ.''' Friends of Northcut have agreed to take him to the pound where ``TJ'' is being held tomorrow. ``If the city officials and the system doesn't get in the way, Thomas and 'TJ' will be together again, greeting the folks in Solana Beach and enjoying the freedom he gave so much of himself to protect,'' Lynch added.
For further information, please contact Jennifer Lynch, Esq., +1-760-643-4113; or Sam Georges, Esq., +1-619-417-1408; or Stephen Jaffe of Jaffe & Co., Inc., +1-310-275-7327.
SOURCE: Jaffe & Co., Inc., Strategic Media and Crisis Management
Northcut was in the USN stationed in South Viet Nam. He was a 'river rat' and was injured over in Cambodia. There was 13 men in the boat when the boat exploded from enemy fire. Apparently some men were killed and a few were injured. He was sent to a hospital in Australia to recover.
He has been in Solana Beach for about 10 years. He had another dog for seven years who died of old age. Then he got this German Shepard. This dog worked with the Border Patrol down in San Diego. The San Diego Animal Control did a scan and found the chip in its neck. My guess is that the dog has barked and lurched at Mexicans, which he was trained to do! They have found a police dog trainer who has offered to work with the dog to retrain it.
The Mayor in San Diego forwarded all the emails he got up to the Mayor at Solana Beach. Literally "hundreds of emails" is the term Sam used. The City manager of Solana Beach is "looking into what they can do" to get Northcut his dog back and they are probably going to start treating him with the respect he deserves. With this much publicity we have got them damn scared and on their toes. I expect that very soon things will be much better for Northcut and his dog.
I guess they were shocked that this has become an "international issue". Well, it is because of you folks that this has happened. Sam got a call from someone who said it was in the National Review (?) newspaper. The man hung up without giving his name. I am so proud that you all have taken the time to step forward. It is things like this that will make all cities start looking at war veterans with a different scope. They will be afraid that if they mistreat a veteran the same "international issue" could be brought into their city showing how cold hearted they are.
Sam is going out of the country for two weeks on Wednesday. His assistant, Gail will be answering his phone. Jennifer is also available to receive phone calls. Stephen Jaffe was the one who asked Jennifer to defend Northcut in court to get him out of jail. She did it Pro Bono. What a great lady!
Wouldn't we love to know who blew the whistle, when it appears most of the town loved 'em?
Thanks so much for the update!
I am so sick and tired of the riff-raff being placed above the high quality men of this country I could scream. The entire city of San Diego should be fired and their pathetic liberal hides thrown out on the street.