Calling himself Sidi Muhammad ibn Abdallah, Edwards asserted neither the court nor the United States had jurisdiction over him; he refused to get a lawyer on charges he used a knife and baseball bat to kill his pregnant wife and his mother Dec. 7 —
Johnny Edwards, IV, in a Dec. 19 hearing before Judge Christopher Edwards in Fayette County Superior Court was denied bond for the alleged murders of his mother, Dr. Kathy Edwards, and his wife, Venus Quanteh, at Dr. Edwards’ home on Dec. 7.
Johnny Edwards, IV, during the hearing said his name was Sidi Muhammad ibn Abdallah, refused representation by an attorney and maintained that the court had no jurisdiction over him.
The case is expected to go before the Fayette County Grand Jury in February.
The deaths of the two women were the result of injuries sustained by a knife and a baseball bat, District Attorney Ben Coker told the court.
Johnny Edwards, IV, called 911 on Dec. 7 saying he had killed his mother and his wife.
Throughout the Dec. 19 proceeding, Johnny Edwards, IV, at the hearing offered very limited responses to the many questions posted by the court.
At one point during the statements read by the court pertaining to his arrest warrants, Johnny Edwards asked if he could speak.
“Once again, I would like to state for the record, on the record, and let the record show that I am here under the treaty of peace and friendship, Sept. 6, 1836,” Johnny Edwards said. “I am not Johnny T. Edwards (he had stated earlier in the hearing that his name was (Sidi Muhammad ibn Abdallah). I was born an American National. I once again, the United States relinquished jurisdiction here in Morocco October 6th, 1956. Meaning that this tribunal lacks persona jurisdiction, subject matter jurisdiction, and territorial jurisdiction to adjudicate anything regarding this matter.”
Asked by Judge Edwards if he understood the charges against him, Johnny Edwards said, “I remain silent,” though at one point he did say that the United States is not a country. Beyond that, Johnny Edwards did not respond to most of the other statements and questions posed by the court.
Johnny Edwards at one point did say, “I would like to state for the record on the record that the United States has been insolvent to bankruptcy since 1933, meaning that it has — it’s not a country, it’s a corporation. A bankrupt corporation. Once again, it has no jurisdiction regarding this matter. No subject matter jurisdiction, no territorial jurisdiction, and no persona jurisdiction. I’m here under the treaty of peace and friendship, September 6th, 1836. The treaty is a treaty that Morocco had with the United States Corporation. With the corporation being bankrupt you-all don’t have any jurisdiction. But regarding me, you can only hold the body up to a year and then you have to release me.”
Judge Edwards later said his assessment was that Johnny Edwards was competent to stand trial.
“Well, my assessment of you is that you are legally competent that you understand the nature of the charges against you,” Judge Edwards said. “You have — you express some complex understanding of some laws. Although I’m very clearly suggesting to you again that you’re completely misapprehending those laws and you’re seeking to misapply them here to the extent that they are laws. I’m not conversant with them myself. But you’re certainly alert and oriented to time, place, person, and circumstance. I find you are legally competent to stand trial under the Dusky Standard. But that is an assessment based only on the hearing today. I have no other knowledge of you, except for your responsiveness and your thoughtful decision to remain silent as to certain questions.”
Judge Edwards informed Johnny Edwards that he would undergo a competency evaluation to determine if he is legally competent to stand trial and a sanity evaluation. Judge Edwards urged Johnny Edwards to participate in those evaluations.
As the hearing was in process, someone from the audience yelled, “Johnny, cooperate. Your brother loves you. We love you. Johnny, cooperate. The Edwards family loves you. Cooperate, son.”
The person speaking was escorted out of the courtroom.
Judge Edwards again asked Johnny Edwards if he would reconsider having legal representation. Johnny Edwards said he would not.
At another point in the hearing, Coker noted that Johnny Edwards and Venus Quanteh prior to Dec. 7 moved to Fayette County from Colorado and were living at the residence of Kathy Edwards.
Coker noted the 911 call from Johnny Edwards, with deputies responding to the scene finding the two women deceased.
“There were injuries to them by the use of a knife. And also the State would submit that the evidence will show that a baseball bat, each suffered injuries by knife wound and blunt force trauma,” Coker said. “We are awaiting the results of the autopsy at this point. However, the evidence would show also that the victim, Venus Quanteh, was approximately five months pregnant at the time. We anticipate additional warrants to follow. If not, additional charges will follow from grand jury indictment. We intend to present the case to the grand jury in February.”
Coker said he opposed any bond for Johnny Edwards.
“First off, I think this Defendant does not feel that this Court has jurisdiction over him. I would submit that he is a significant risk of flight from this jurisdiction of this Court. He’s also a significant danger to the community. And he is a significant risk of obstructing the administration of justice pending this trial. So we would oppose bond,” said Coker.
Johnny Edwards made no response, with Judge Edwards then denying bond.
Judge Edwards again asked Johnny Edwards if he wanted to reconsider having an attorney.
“Not right now, sir, no,” Johnny Edwards responded.
Johnny Edwards at the outset of the hearing confirmed that he had declined the services of an attorney.
Asked by Judge Edwards if he wanted to reconsider that position, Johnny Edwards responded, saying, “I’d like to state something for the record — on the record and let the record show that I am Sidi Muhammad ibn Abdallah. I am not any nonager or any student that you may have on file or on record. I do not have any contracts or corporations or municipality. With that being said, the United States relinquished jurisdiction in Morocco October 6th, 1956, meaning that this tribunal lacks persona jurisdiction, it lacks subject matter — subject matter jurisdiction and territorial jurisdiction to adjudicate anything regarding this matter. I demand habeas corpus.”
Judge Edwards responded, noting that “Your body has been produced. What do you want me to do about it?”
“Release the body,” Johnny Edwards said, with Judge Edwards responding that the purpose of the hearing was to determine if he should be released on bond.
Judge Edwards again said the purpose of the hearing was to determine if he should be released, adding that “What you just recited is no more meaningful to a court of law than reciting a children’s nursery rhyme in response to a murder charge. It is meaningless. And so I again urge you to reconsider your position that you want to recite something suggesting the Court has no jurisdiction. And reconsider being represented by very experienced lawyers who have handled many, many cases as serious as yours and more serious.”
Judge Edwards again asked Johnny Edwards if he wanted to represent himself.
“Respectfully, sir. I would like to state for the record on the record that I am Sidi Muhammad ibn Abdallah. That I’m here under the treaty of peace and friendship. And that you can only hold the body up to a year. I am not tribunal property. I have no contracts with you or your corporation or municipality. You have — this tribunal lacks subject matter jurisdiction, territorial jurisdiction and subject matter jurisdiction,” Johnny Edwards said.
From that point the bond hearing proceeded.