Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Adventures In Incarceration 2

So, to finish the story of my incarceration from the previous post on the subject.

The night I entered jail for my sentence, I was in shock. During intake they give out handbooks, and in the handbook it says something about if you’re feeling suicidal please tell someone. Well, I was, so I did.


Turns out there’s no actual help available, what they do to suicidals is strip them, give them a smock of the same material used as temporary linings for elevators, and move them to a cell with nothing but a concrete slab. Keep in mind as well, that the jail is kept at about sixty degrees to suppress illness.

Oh, and in the suicide wing they never alter the light levels and have no clocks around.

I was in there for about a week. After about five days, I get my Circuit Court habeas bail appeal hearing. I’m informed of it too late to manage to take a shower, so I wear the same clothes I wore at trial and am taken to the courthouse. I get to the courtroom were my hearing will be hearing will be and find out that not only do I have no lawyer, but the public defenders present have no idea who I am. For the last four days I’ve got no sleep and extensive isolation, and then I find out I have no lawyer for my bail hearing. Of course I begin to panic.

The prosecutor generously shares their file on me with the public defender present. (If I recall correctly, it was the head of the Public Defender’s Office) She proceeds to do client intake in the jury box, right in front of the flipping judge.

Judge King grants a bail I can’t afford so I return to jail. Sometime later, (I think a day or two) the same attorney from the bail hearing visits me and offers the same the original deal, except now in Circuit Court. Since it was never my intention to plead guilty, this one would not be appealable, and I had just been badly burned on the deal, I said no.

Skip ahead five months, I now have a public defender who is actually reviewing the evidence and building a case, ready to proceed to trial. So naturally the prosecutor offers another deal - they’re dropping the clearly made-up assault charge and bringing up the minor charges, so either I can plead guilty to trespass or the prosecution will put in a last-second continuance and send me back to jail for two months. Thoroughly out of options, and with my new public defender pushing the deal since I’ve already served almost twice the maximum sentence of the charge, I admit defeat, accept the plea and am released.

You can now like me on Facebookcontribute support to my work and follow me on Twitter and if you run a Maryland political group or candidate, I am offering free video work this year.

If you like this piece, please help distribute it! Share it on Facebook, post it on Twitter, Reddit, whatever.

No comments:

Post a Comment