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View Diary: Charlie Grapski jailed since Oct. 12 with no bond (227 comments)

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  •  kind of has that smell (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    c, ThirstyGator, Blackmamba1973

    local law enforcement going overboard, but in some ways instigated into it by a guy who seems to have made "making trouble" his cause in life

    •  not to make light of the situation (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      c, chick ghandil, COwoman

      but if you basically walk around daring the police to arrest you, you're likely to be arrested.

      Come and see the violence inherenet in the system!  Help! Help! I'm being repressed!

      I am my brother's keeper, I am my sister's keeper. - President Elect Barack Obama

      by ThirstyGator on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 07:11:27 AM PST

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      •  Being a pain in the butt (6+ / 0-)

        Is not a valid reason for incarceration.

        Charlie certainly hasn't helped himself by his own actions, but he still doesn't deserve to be held indefinitely without bond on a clearly trumped up charge as a means of coercing a plea deal.

        What he needs is a real lawyer, not a public defender who'll try to convince him to plead guilty to a felony he didn't commit.

        Refusing to plead is not "choosing not to be defended by competent counsel," it's choosing not to become a convicted felon for having recorded a conversation with a public official in the open and with permission.

        You don't need to protect me from someone else's spelling, grammar, extra posts on a topic, or use of quotations.

        by mataliandy on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 07:54:24 AM PST

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        •  we disagree (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          c

          You're correct that being a pain in the butt is not reason for incarceration.

          That's not what this is about.  The guy repeatedly breaks the law.  They put you in jail for that.  When you do it often enough, they don't give you bail.  PD's are real lawyers.  You should get to know some of them.

          I am my brother's keeper, I am my sister's keeper. - President Elect Barack Obama

          by ThirstyGator on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 08:02:03 AM PST

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          •  I hear what you're saying (0+ / 0-)

            The guy repeatedly breaks the law.  They put you in jail for that.

            Fine. Convict him and put him in prison.

            But it seems the "crime" that is keeping him in jail without bond is recording a public official.

            Is that not a problem for anyone that values the rule of law?

            Or is the story wrongly reported?

            Best,  Terry

          •  The laws he has "broken" (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lotlizard
            - He recorded a public official in the open, with permission. (law supposedly broken: felony wiretapping)

            - He tried to file a complaint when a police officer illegally accessed his bank records, and was persistent in requesting to be allowed to file. He was arrested and imprisoned, beaten for this "crime."

            - He spoke to another person at a public meeting, then asked why he was being asked to leave, since he'd done nothing wrong (starting at 35 minutes, in this video).

            - The above "crime" led to the "assault" charges against the police. In the video, starting at 38 minutes, you can see the "assault." (Good thing for Charlie there's video.)

            - Misdemeanor trespassing. The only legitimately broken law in the bunch.

            So, yes, he's a pain in the butt, but to characterize him as a repeated lawbreaker is not quite accurate.

            I'm sure if I were in the same community, I'd be plenty impatient with him, and might be tempted to write him off due to his annoyance factor, but that doesn't mean this imprisonment is appropriate.

            You don't need to protect me from someone else's spelling, grammar, extra posts on a topic, or use of quotations.

            by mataliandy on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 09:00:23 AM PST

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          •  ThirstyGator is now judge and jury? (0+ / 0-)

            The guy repeatedly breaks the law.  They put you in jail for that.  When you do it often enough, they don't give you bail.  PD's are real lawyers.  You should get to know some of them.

            It is a fact that Charlie Grapski has not been convicted of a crime, although a great deal of effort and taxpayers' expense has been devoted to doing so (including by public and police officials who are guilty of numerous PROVABLE criminal violations).

            The real issue here is not whether Charlie Grapski is a white knight or an asshole, the real issue is whether a citizen's right to defend him/herself against their accusers is guaranteed, and whether there is a  presumption of innocence in the judicial process.

            ThirstyGator's comments reveal either an ignorance of the facts in this case, a disregard for constitutional rights and the rule of law, a bias against Grapski, or all of the above...

        •  If you get "bad advice" from one lawyer (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          c

          maybe s/he's a bad lawyer.

          If you get the same "bad advice" from another lawyer, maybe you're having a run of bad luck.

          If a third lawyer also gives you that "bad advice," perhaps you should start wondering why it's so "bad."

          If a fourth lawyer thinks the "bad advice" was actually a damned good idea, well, the problem is more likely found in the mirror than in the courtroom.

          Done with politics for the night? Have a nice glass of wine with Two Days per Bottle.

          by dhonig on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 08:56:49 AM PST

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          •  There's always a degree of conflict of interest (0+ / 0-)

            between a defendant who wants to go to trial, and attorney's natural desire to get the case over with. This is not to suggest his attorneys have violated ethical codes, but when the defendant is short on social skills the problem's exacerbated, and repeats.

            I'm less stubborn than Charlie, so there's been a couple cases where I took deals i'd have rather not to keep a good relationship with my attorney, with a view towards the next case.

            The War on Drugs is $40 billion a year of Government waste.

            by ben masel on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 09:20:16 AM PST

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            •  Pleading guilty to a crime or infraction (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mataliandy, lotlizard

              one hasn't committed is understandable, but morally reprehensible.  While many people cannot afford to stand on principle because they put loved ones or family members at risk, Charlie Grabski is not inhibited by these considerations.

              Plea bargain justice is socially corrosive because whenever a false plea is entered, it re-enforces the assumption that "everybody's guilty of something" and that the presumption of innocence is just a procedural starting point.

              Plea bargain justice also promotes over-charging by the police and prosecutors and a certain disregard for providing accurate information and evidence.  It's in this sense that it is corrosive of our judicial system.

              I was a "disinterested" observer of court proceedings in Alachua County for more than a decade.  I sat in on all kinds of trials and hearings, including divorce proceedings conducted "in chambers" to "protect" the wealthy participants from having to expose their dirty laundry to public inspection.  I was invited to become a Guardian Ad Litem so I could have access to juvenile hearings, where I got to see dozens of juveniles "disposed of" in a couple of hours while wealthy couples could monopolize court facilities for days.  It was not an edifying experience.

              One of the main problems we have is that the judicial system is essentially closed since only those affected by the outcome of proceedings usually show up.  The press makes an occasional appearance for a celebrity case, but the day to day activities are generally ignored by the law abiding citizenry, which assumes that anyone who ends up in court must have done something wrong.

              How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

              by hannah on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 09:58:18 AM PST

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              •  2007 stats for my County (0+ / 0-)

                showed only 1% of misdemeanor cases going to trial. Used to be higher, but now the DA's office moves to dismiss all of mine at the initial appearance. (Actually they dismiss most of the weak ones, since they're getting more felonies with the same number of Assistant DAs)

                The War on Drugs is $40 billion a year of Government waste.

                by ben masel on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 10:03:40 AM PST

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                •  From where I sit, if the prosecutors are (0+ / 0-)

                  dismissing almost all charges, then the police aren't doing a good job. Arrests and charges that can't be validated are merely inflating police time sheets and pretending to be accomplishing something that they're not.
                  Respect for law and order is not enhanced when people are falsely charged.

                  Of course, New Hampshire has a really weird system where arresting officers get to prosecute their own misdemeanor arrests.

                  How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

                  by hannah on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 12:25:47 PM PST

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                  •  They're dismissing the weak ones. (0+ / 0-)

                    Plenty more getting guilty pleas.

                    I'll admit that SOMETIMES it makes sense to make the arrest to unwind a situation that seems to be, in the view of the officer on the spot, to be about to spiral into something worse, with a quick release after emotional temperastures cool, and it's then a waste of everyone's time to prosecute the borderline disorderly. More often, these plea down to non-criminal County Ordinance disorderly.

                    The War on Drugs is $40 billion a year of Government waste.

                    by ben masel on Tue Nov 25, 2008 at 12:55:34 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

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