From: Prosecuting Attorney of Gibson County: OAKLAND CITY MAN CONVICTED OF INTIMIDATING LIBRARIAN Larry E. Fisk, age 40, Oakland City, was found guilty of a Class A misdemeanor charge of Intimidation yesterday by a six person jury in the Gibson Superior Court. The charge against Fisk stemmed from an August 2006 incident that occurred at the Oakland City Public Library. On August 2, 2006, the head librarian of the Oakland City Public Library, Maureen Barton, informed Fisk’s wife Verna that she would no longer be allowed to check out DVD’s because Barton believed that Fisk was returning defective DVD’s to the library. An investigation by library employees led them to conclude that the DVD’s being returned by Mrs. Fisk were European DVD’s that can be bought for a very low cost over the internet but cannot be played on most U.S. DVD players. In effect, the Fisk’s were buying useless DVD’s for just a few dollars and exchanging them for the library’s DVD’s which would have cost them much more had they purchased them legally. Later that evening, Mr. & Mrs. Fisk returned to the library and sat outside Ms. Barton’s office until the library closed. When asked to leave at closing time, they then went outside and continued to remain on library property. Barton called law enforcement as she became concerned about the Fisk’s behavior, but they had left the property by the time officers arrived. The next day, on August 3rd, both Mr. & Mrs. Fisk returned to the library and confronted Ms. Barton in her office. Barton testified that Mr. Fisk became very angry that Mrs. Fisk’s DVD privileges had been suspended and that law enforcement had been called the previous evening. Barton stated that she repeatedly asked the Fisk’s to leave but they refused to do so. She stated she was trapped in her small office with no way out when Fisk moved within a few feet of her and threatened her by saying that if she ever called the cops again she would “know violence”. Testimony showed that the altercation became so loud that other library employees and patrons became very concerned, including a few children who became very fearful. A 911 call made by Ms. Barton was played to the jury to demonstrate how upset she was at the time of the incident. Testimony further showed that shortly after being told by law enforcement to leave the library, Mrs. Fisk made a phone call to Brittnay Sirmans, wherein Sirmans overheard Mr. Fisk in the background making further threats of violence against both Ms. Barton and against another library employee, Aeriel Bruce, who had overheard the threats being made against Ms. Barton at the library. Sirmans testified that Fisk used many derogatory remarks in speaking of Ms. Barton and reiterated his intention to cause her physical harm. Ms. Barton testified about the August 3rd occurrence and at times became very emotional as she spoke of how it affected her, leaving her very fearful and upset for many months. Further testimony revealed that Fisk continued to harass and intimidate Ms. Barton by parking outside the library around the time she came to and from work, by following her around town as she went to the post office and various other places, and by attempting to follow her to her home on more than one occasion. Defense attorney Lisa Moody called Verna Fisk to the stand on behalf of her husband. Under cross-examination by Gibson County Prosecutor Robert Krieg, Mrs. Fisk continued to deny that her husband caused any problems whatsoever. However, she admitted to Krieg that her husband always means what he says. She further admitted that Fisk says very derogatory things about women when he is mad, and many of the words she said her husband uses when angry were the very words that Ms. Sirmans testified were said by Fisk during the phone conversation wherein he made further threats against Ms. Barton. Mr. Fisk took the stand in his own defense and denied that he made any threats to Ms. Barton. Fisk stated that he was not trying to intimidate anyone when sitting out in his car near the library. Fisk told the jury he lives only one block from the library and that he sits in his car to listen to music and to get comfortable due to a disability that causes him pain when he lies down. Krieg, however, pointed out that Fisk made a point to park across the street from the library rather than near his house and that the position in which he parked forced both Ms. Barton and other library employees to pass him every day as they came to and from work. Krieg also questioned Fisk as to whether his effort to make himself comfortable would also make it necessary for him to follow Ms. Barton in his car as far as Francisco on more than one occasion. Ms. Barton had previously testified that Fisk had tried to follow her home but that when she got to Francisco she turned around for fear the he would discover where she lived. Fisk arrived in the courtroom in a wheelchair while wearing prosthetic legs from the knee down due to a medical condition that led to the loss of portions of both legs. Krieg, however, elicited testimony from numerous witnesses that Fisk is often seen walking and that he is a very large man. He stated due to Fisk’s size and to the close proximity between he and Ms. Barton when the threat was made, it was very likely anyone would be intimidated if they were in a similar position. Krieg argued that regardless of his condition, the jury had to remember that Mrs. Fisk told them Mr. Fisk meant what he said when he threatened Ms. Barton and that his subsequent actions reinforced his intent. The prosecutor told the jury that they were lucky they were here only to hear about a charge of Intimidation rather than something much more serious had this problem continued to escalate. In closing arguments, Krieg told the jury that it would have been easier if Ms. Barton had quit her job so she no longer had to be around the Mr. or Mrs. Fisk. He stated that she would quit however because she loved her job and loved helping the kids of Oakland City. He closed by asking the jury to now help Ms. Barton by stopping the bullying and intimidation that she has had to endure. The jury returned the guilty verdict in less than one hour. Sentencing for Larry Fisk is set for August 1st at 9am in Gibson Superior Court.