There have been several threads about the words and deeds of John Lamont in this forum. I will try to limit redundancy, however, some of the items that came up in my meeting with Mr. Lamont do indeed address some of the issues contained in those mentioned below. For review:
Also, to give a base on my perspective and method of analyzing the data provide to me from various sources, I have referenced the following page, which introduces one of the concepts I employ within Sage Systems, called "The Arc"
. I believe that the perspective it portrays is consistent with my views in looking back on this event. I also think it will provide some folks here with some insight, not only into looking at this situation, but perhaps in later encounters with like "bad actors".
And finally, and most importantly, anyone can download and review THE ACTUAL CONVERSATION
. Mr. Lamont permitted me to record this, as long as "it goes both ways", so I created an audio CD to send to him for his records. While I was producing the CD, I decided to write the audio out in RealMedia format, and post it for public review. You will also find a link to the Raleigh News & Observer Full Text Archive, where you can search and read the entire article series on John Lamont, that details the year+plus court battle, the denials, and eventual confessions made my him.
[As a side note - it was originally my intent to video tape the entire event, but my battery gave out on the DV camcorder - so I went to my audio backup - and handheld cassette recorder. I'm glad I was prepared, as some of the things he said were astonishing - and Mr. Lamont would likely deny they were said without recorded evidence - much like in his past criminal proceedings.]
John Lamont - Registered Sex Offender meets with Houston Haynes
I have to admit I played a bit too nice with Mr. Lamont. It was my goal to get as much information as possible, so I couldn't allow myself to become verbally combative. What surprised me beyond anything he actually said, was the arrogance, lack of contrition, and generally dismissive attitude he had about anything wrong he had done. Not only did he try to minimize his crimes, but even went so far as to say they were "separate things" from his martial arts background. This coming from a man who had overnight training sessions in his dojo where he used a hidden doorway to access the girl's dressing room. He even had a long-time friend with him to interject some lawyerly sounding verbage, and occasionally help John to hold his stories together. I was surprised to say the least.
It must be said that Mr. Lamont emphasized that he RESINGED from the AAA and Ki Society before his conviction [as opposed to what I was told from several other sources in the AAA - that he was stripped of all rank and recognition], and now has NO AFFILIATION with any aikido organization by his own decision. He went on to tell me that all of his credentials to his students come directly from him [as opposed to Aikido Hombu in Japan], and that all of his public statements of recognition are accurate. Consider the images I supplied along with the audio clips, that they represent intentionally vague wording in one case, and direct contradiction to his assertions in another.
Also, Mr. Lamont mentions extensive hands-on experience in law enforcement and special operations, but the only documentation I saw was as a tactical instructor or consultant. This is significantly different that being the day-in-day-out personnel that has to do the job. He specifically said in conversation that he never in the military, yet his web site alludes to extensive law enforcement and military service - read "special operations". These statements are intentionally vague - and in my opinion represent an effort to mislead potential students into thinking Mr. Lamont is more than he is.
To add to the confusion, Mr. Lamont presented a photocopy of a badge/wallet [not the wallet itself - but a photocopy of it - Hmmm...] that listed him as a sworn officer of the Raleigh Police Department, yet the original investigating officer and the department Attorney both stated plainly
to me that he was never a sworn officer in any law enforcement agency - EVER - including and especially the RPD. He was an auxiliary member, and tactical instructor, but never held rank in any law inforcement organization - captain or otherwise. Whether Mr. Lamont ever stated that he was a Viet Nam veteran or a specific rank within law enforcement cannot be verified in documentary evidence, and he even went to the trouble to specifically state that he NEVER EVER said he was EVER in the military. So at least those who might have mistakenly thought he was a person with such a history are now "standing corrected", by evidence, and John Lamont's own admission.
While the documentation looked like they were not obviously forged, and in many cases resembled original documents, there is no way to independently verify most of what I saw, as most of the documents he offered were from the early 80's, and would be difficult or impossible to track down every signatory of every document he pushed onto the table. I don't think that point was lost on Mr. Lamont. Also, documents stating his work as a tactics instructor were intermixed with the documents regarding other forms of contract work - i.e. technology jobs. He even showed an officer's pass to a military base - but it was connected to a contract, not active service. Could this be where some students might have mistaken Mr. Lamont as having active military service in his career? We may never know the truth, as Mr. Lamont takes no responsibility for his misled students, and most of them are too ashamed to come forward and tell us the whole story in public.
Everyone has the right to express their opinions. This does not give anyone the right to lie about their credentials or personal history. The use of inaccurate or omitted information that is likely to affect a potential student's choice is considered fraud
- and is an actionable offense - according to The US Federal Trade Commission Statutes. Unfortunately, unless a former student comes forth as a "harmed party", this will likely remain uncontested in this case. There were several other individuals that were reported to have been physically harmed by Mr. Lamont, beyond the accusations of the original child accuser. Since none of them were willing to come forward, and the nature of the embarrassment in realizing your teacher is a fraud and a child molestor, it is not surprising that none of his former students will come forward.
After speaking to the parole officer, the prosecuting attorney and investigating officer in John Lamont's case, I feel completely satisfied and confident in the opinions I have presented here and in previous posts.
In concluding my discussion with Mr. Lamont, I said that my response to Don Cunningham was "between Don and myself". Well, I've expressed my gratitude to John directly, but I'd also like to Don for his efforts in bringing the truth to light in this matter. I have not always agreed with Don on everything he's posted in E-budo, but I feel quite fortunate that he has done what he has to protect the public from people like John Lamont, and I count him amongst my friends.
Thank you all for taking time to read all of this. If anyone would like to receive a copy of the conversation between John Lamont and myself, I will be happy to send you a copy of the CD. Just put a check for $20 made to the Durham County Rape Crisis Center and send it to my dojo, along with a return address, and I will mail a disc to you and even pay for the packing and shipping.
Since there is a time limit that the Raleigh News & Observer Full Text Archive can be viewed for free. I would suggest that folks also print out copies of those articles to provide along with the other public documents that are available.
Pass it on...
Sage Systems - Tetsutaka Dojo
4125 Chapel Hill Blvd Suite 7B
Durham NC 27707 USA
(919) 401 6931