Brenda Hawk has been in a long battle with her power company and her sheriffs department over the installation of smart meters. All Brenda wanted from the company was written assurance that these new smart meters are safe and not a hazard, but the company allegedly refused to do so. The story only gets more disturbing from there.
The transcript of the interview is below:
GLENN: Next I want to tell you kind of a, I don't know, a 1984 story, if you will, a story of Big Brother, and a story of the little person winning against the machine. At least a temporary battle. Brenda Hawk is a 9/12 project member and she's a woman that lives in Ohio and does not want the smart meter. And she's lived her life the right way. Last October she was told she's going to have to get a smart meter attached to her home, and she said no. She successfully managed to keep the old one until just last week. The CEO of American Electric Power sent her a letter saying, "Too bad, you're getting a smart meter." She has a pacemaker and people have reported problems with pacemakers after getting the smart meters installed. She said, "I don't want it." She is somebody that needs a breathing machine, she's ‑‑ I mean, she's not necessarily the picture of health.
Well, here in the middle of winter they shut her power off and her water. I've never seen anything like it. They shut her power and water off. The sheriff and the power company trucks arrive uninvited and she says to the sheriff, "Are you there to protect my rights?" And he says, "No, I'm here to protect them." She said, "I do not want a smart meter on my house." So they shut her power off. Well, because she's a 9/12 member, the phones at TheBlaze lit up and we found out about Brenda's story, and she spoke to Michael Opelka and she's on the phone with us now to give us the rest of the story. And the kind of happy, I was going to say ending, but middle. Brenda, how are you?
HAWK: Oh, I'm doing fine, Glenn. I ‑‑ it's a great honor to speak with you today.
GLENN: Well, I'm sorry. I wish it was on ‑‑ I wish it was on something else, but tell me about your experience of having the sheriff and the power company come out and put you in your place.
HAWK: Well, it was rather interesting since I had erased my easement with AEP, oh, about ten or twelve years ago due to some tree‑trimming problems and ‑‑
GLENN: Explain ‑‑ hang on just a second. Explain what that means, Brenda.
HAWK: Well, they always had these groups called Asplundh contract with AEP to come trim your trees and they don't trim them. They butcher them to where they ‑‑ they actually make them dangerous and they start dying and that's why they do it that way.
GLENN: Right. They are doing it to keep the power lines clear in case there's snow or wind or something.
HAWK: And unfortunately my trees weren't interfering with their pole. They were 30 feet off their easement even but they said they had a blanket easement to my property. So it made it right that they could even remove my house if they felt it was in the way.
GLENN: That's crazy.
HAWK: I was a little shocked at that. So we had some issues and I found out later on that, studying the law that I could erase my easement with a contract between two parties. So I thought I was safe on this because they haven't returned with the tree trimmers over twelve years and they usually do this every three. And so I informed AEP that, you know, they would need my permission on the land if they did come here. And the issue I had with the meter is that I just wanted a written guarantee. I called PUCO, the whole bit, did everything legally and said that all I wanted was a written guarantee that this meter is safe for my health, my health and my home and for the animals because I've read quite a few things and I wanted the information from them to prove that the meter was safe and to prove what I was reading on the Internet may not be right. They wouldn't give it to me. And so it's quite a shock to see them come last Friday.
GLENN: Did they notify you ‑‑ did they notify you in advance that they were coming?
GLENN: But I thought we had cancelled the appointment when I talked to an AEP representative beforehand that I said, I had asked him to send me this information and I had written to the governor of Ohio and my congressman Jim Jordan and it was awaiting, you know, some information or answers from somebody as to whether they could do this or not when they had no easement to my property. And, of course, I hadn't received anything and that was within that week. So it was way too probably fast for anybody to answer me. Jim Jordan's office did contact me and said they were working on it at the local office. And then they called back later in the afternoon and said they found out there's nothing they can do because it's a state issue. So I went, okay. But when the sheriff's department came at 10:00 in the morning, they came with three AEP trucks and when the deputy came to my porch, and I knew to stay on the inside of my enclosed porch with the door locked. Let's just say I've had issues before because of this. And I spoke to the officer, and I'm always very polite to people and I just asked him, like you had stated that, "Are you here to protect my property rights as a citizen of Allen County, or are you here to protect AEP?" And he said, "No, ma'am, I'm not here for you. I'm here for AEP."
GLENN: Boy, I tell you I would do everything I can, and the 9/12 project should do everything they can to make sure that sheriff is voted out.
HAWK: Oh, well, this gets interesting. Let me update you real quick what happened Monday. They did restore my power. I guess they ‑‑
GLENN: Hang on just a second. It's my understanding that within three hours of this being posted on TheBlaze, they were inundated with e‑mails and phone calls and they restored your power. Is that your understanding?
HAWK: Yeah, not until ‑‑ not until 36 hours later, about ‑‑
GLENN: Oh, 36 hours?
HAWK: Yeah. About 5:30 on Friday evening ‑‑ I mean Saturday evening, I'm sorry. So I had to stay awake for 36 hours because if I fall asleep because of my brain injury, it stops my diaphragm from working and without the CPAP type of breathing machine ‑‑ I don't have sleep apnea. It's a brain condition. It's called central apnea. And my brain, if I do fall asleep, the brain just kind of slows down and won't let my diaphragm work.
GLENN: Right. It is a very ‑‑ it is an extraordinarily dangerous medical situation.
HAWK: Condition, yes.
GLENN: And you can die quickly from it. But I understand they laughed at you when you brought that up.
HAWK: Yeah. That was one issue I brought up that I said, you know, there's an Ohio law that states you cannot turn my power off between November 15th and April 15th. And I said, I've paid my bill. And they said, well, that law does not pertain to you, ma'am. And this Mr. Rocco was with this deputy that day. I didn't know who it was at the time, but he was the one pretty well telling me that the law doesn't pertain to me. And I said, oh, you're right. My bill has been paid up to date and I've never missed a payment. So I guess that makes a difference, huh? They were just kind of giggling at me at my expense and they said, well, I'll tell ya, lady, it's either the meter, you take the meter or we take your power. And I said, well, I'll tell you what. If it's about the meter, go ahead and take the analog meter off my house but until you give me a guarantee that the other one's safe, you cannot replace it with the RFM meter. And they said ‑‑ they kind of discussed each other between AEP and the deputy and they said, "Well, it's going to be the power then." They didn't really even want the meter. That was what really fascinated me.
GLENN: I will tell you that, I think there are a lot of people in the power companies that are doing it because it will save them money. And it will. It will save them money. They don't have to go and look at it. But I really, truly believe, and I don't know if you believe this, Brenda, but smart meters in the end are all about control.
HAWK: Right. Right. Yeah, from what I've studied, I understood that pretty well before they showed up.
HAWK: And yeah, because I ‑‑
GLENN: So what happened on Monday when ‑‑ with the sheriff?
HAWK: Yeah, Monday was very interesting. I just, some friends were kind of concerned about my safety and they said, why don't you call your Allen County sheriff's department and lodge a complaint or file charges against these people. I said, you know, that's probably a good idea. So first thing Monday morning around 8:30 in the morning, I did call the sheriff's department. And they took my report and said they would have a deputy ‑‑ or a sergeant call me back. Well, the sergeant called me back and was extremely rude and disrespectful to me. I mean, he yelled at me up one side and down the other and basically he said I was a criminal, I was shooting at people, I had no right to give anybody ‑‑
GLENN: What the hell kind of sheriff's department do you have?
GLENN: What kind of sheriff's department do you have?
HAWK: It's scary. It's really scary.
GLENN: Let me tell you something. Now I sound like a broken record, but Brenda, move to Texas.
HAWK: I wish I could.
HAWK: Land here is not selling very well.
GLENN: Yeah. Well, another reason to move to Texas.
HAWK: Tough to leave.
GLENN: Wow. I am sorry, Brenda. Okay. So what is this sheriff's name?
HAWK: The sheriff's name is Sheriff Crish, C‑r‑i‑s‑h.
HAWK: Yeah, Crish.
GLENN: When is he up for reelection?
HAWK: He was just elected I think a year or so ago. So it's going to be a while.
GLENN: Well, for anybody who is listening that wants to run against him and wants to protect the people of your area, if you're running, I will give you a commercial for free to run against him if you stand for the principles of liberty and the understanding that it is your land. If the sheriffs ‑‑ I will lend my voice to a group of sheriffs that decide that they are going to stand together across the country, and I will do everything I can to empower sheriffs and to make sure that people understand that your sheriff, your local sheriff is the best friend that you have. And any of these sheriffs that decide they are going to go the other way, I'll help ya. I'll help you. You just let me know.
So Brenda, how is this left now?
HAWK: Well, I don't know what happened, but after this sergeant ripped me up one side and down the other and just yelled at me and said, "Lady," never said my name or anything. Just was basically being very rude, he called back about five minutes later. I didn't even recognize the voice. And he said, "Gee, I..." kind of interesting. He said, "It appears that somebody has already filed a complaint and a case with the prosecuting attorney's office and if I wanted the number I could have it and call the prosecuting attorney's office. And he was very calm. I didn't ‑‑ like I said, I didn't recognize his voice. And he actually called me Ms. Hawk at that point. Total turnaround. So ‑‑
GLENN: Before it was "lady"?
HAWK: Yeah, so far as "hey lady" this and "hey lady" that. I don't even want to get into the conversation. It wasn't pleasant. I just sat there and took it. But yeah, so to date I don't know who has done this in my benefit, and I'm extremely grateful to whoever this person is because usually this is what they pull on me: Well, you don't have any rights, so you cannot do any ‑‑ and they definitely basically said he would not allow me to press charges or write up a complaint against anyone in this town. So I was ‑‑ or against AEP for that matter. So I was really shocked.
GLENN: Well, I tell you what, Brenda, we'll do everything we can at TheBlaze to follow the story and to make sure that this sheriff ‑‑ you know, I would like somebody at TheBlaze to do a profile on this sheriff and we'll also find out who filed that lawsuit for you unless they don't want to be exposed. If they don't mind being exposed, we'll let you know who the good‑doer was. Thank you very much. Brenda, you ‑‑
HAWK: Well, thank you, Glenn Beck.
GLENN: You stay in touch with us, all right? You stay in touch with Michael Opelka. These are his kinds of stories. Thank you so much.
HAWK: Thank you.
GLENN: God bless.