Please share to support justice

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

No Contact

Dave's sister and I scramble for ways to help. We make phone calls and seek information from websites. The information we are getting is disheartening. His bond is $100,000 cash. We won't even have the option to put up real estate as collateral for a bond.

We can't see him. He has to fill out a visitors list with names, addresses and birth dates. Even after it is filled out it can take up to 10 days to be approved. Nice rule for those who are innocent until proven guilty. How many men do you know who memorize birthdays let alone can tell you birth dates? How many men do you know who could recite the full address of their family members? I imagine there are a few but in my experience they are certainly a minority.

All we can do is wait and pray for contact. At this point, we don't yet know that he wasn't permitted to take his wallet with his phone numbers. His sister, ever the Queen of Just in Case, politely asks the guard at the jail to take down our phone numbers and he complies. God bless him.

The call comes in the middle of my night. Working steady night shift has its perks and its drawbacks. I struggle to shake the cobwebs from my brain and understand what the officer is saying. Dave is excluded from his residence. He can't go home. However, if he agrees to waive his rights to a preliminary hearing and he has somewhere to go he will be released on his own recognizance. Even through the cobwebs this sounds... wrong.

I ask the officer to repeat what he has said and I can hear the impatience growing in his voice. "His bond is going to be reduced from $100,000 cash to his own recognizance?" I asked incredulously. "Does he have somewhere to go?" the officer asks again, sharply. I look around my tiny one bedroom apartment. My fiance is at work. Once again I am pressed by the officer,"Can he stay with you, or not?"

Trying to think quickly, it occurs to me his sister's house is quite large. Surely, we can figure something out. The police officer is demanding an immediate answer. What choice do I have? My son is in jail nearly an hour away, alone and scared. We will figure out the ramifications later. "Yes, he has a place to stay!" I answer the officer. He tells me Dave will be released later that day. He tells me to wait for a phone call and he hangs up.

My mind is spinning as I hang up the phone. I don't know who to call first, my fiance or my daughter. I opt for my daughter since she is the one who will have to pick Dave up. My fiance has our only vehicle and he won't be off work until 11pm. He should be understanding, at the least.

Just weeks before we had to fight false assault charges filed against him. It was a case of mistaken identity and there was no doubt he was innocent. Nevertheless we had to fight it in court and the costs of that were steep. He had spent several days in jail. We had spent hundreds on a lawyer. Between the jail time and the court appearances he had missed several days of work. It had just been a few days since that case was dismissed. Here we go again!

I look around the two room apartment one more time and and whisper "I hope".


  1. And the innocent are never reimbursed their legal expenses because the whole point is to not go to jail...even when you are guilty. I really hate our system...even if it does suck less than others.

  2. I'm still stunned at the astronomical costs of legal representation. It is just so far out of my reach. I don't begrudge an attorney who spent years & $$ on education and then hours/days/weeks on a case their money. I just can't understand how an average person is expected to deal with this!