AND the bar for IAC has been raised so high while the bar for AUSA's to introduce evidence has been lowered so far that justice has pretty much become nothing more than a word. Newsweek did a story about the criminal justice system and said the most common reason for convictions was simple.LOUSY LAWYERING.And the reason for barbarically long sentences was the USSG which was put into effect by a lazy and mean congress that was less concerned about justice than in trying to prove to the voting public who was more lawnorder than the other guy and AUSA's who seemed ecstatic at how long of sentences they could get for defendant's since that was how they were rated at the DOJ. Convictions and sentences were all that mattered. NOT JUSTICE. AND if it destroyed a young man's or woman's life and future, who cares...they got a conviction and max sentencing.I can give you horror stories all day and all night long about judges who could have cared less about the defendant and any possible future he may have had just on FIRST violations and gave them whatever the AUSA told them irrespective of what the probation people said who ALWAYS went with the guideline and what the AUSA determined anyway. It has long been known that federal judges don't really have any say so when it comes to sentencing since it is all done by calculator anyway.You want more proof of how you guys are full of it?Go read the article by the Pittsburg Post Gazette ten part series called CONVICT AT ANY COST, and tell us again about how hard you guys work to ensure justice for everyone.I finally had to quit working for the two different law firms because I was having nightmares at what our country had come to when it so casually destroyed the lives of thousands of men and women.The DOJ in 1997, 13 years ago mind you, did a study that showed that as many as TWO PERCENT of the people in prison were actually innocent with perhaps as many as 14 percent over charged and over sentenced. BOTH of which in my opinion were numbers that were far too low.Think about that number...out of over two million people that means around FORTY THOUSAND innocent people are in prison with a few hundred thousand who should not have been given the harsh sentences they got.I'm not saying there are not people who don't deserve to be in prison for life or long periods of time. I met a bunch of whom if they never got out would be fine with me, but I also met many more times as many who either didn't belong there or had been given sentences that were draconian by just about any standards except third world countries.And as for sex offenders, how many are actually in federal court for hands on offenses vs looking at pictures of underage...which mean all the way up to 18. We rarely ran across federal inmates who were in for physical offenses against minors or even adults,but the nonsense that having a picture or pictures was the same as assault was mindboggling. That people with no real experience in any thing except rabble rousing could be used as excuses for what having pictures really meant was disheartening to say the least.I will tell you another hands on crime which I believe didn't happen was from an Indian reservation wherein the parents of a 7 year old claimed their father had molested their daughter who very robotically repeated her story word for word almost exactly the same every time she was interviewed and mom and dad got gramps house and money afterwards. He was devastated and we tried to get him to a mental hospital because he was completely unbalanced by the time we got to him: he was going to die in prison because of his advanced age.
Pt 1Dear Judge Sarokin (or is it still "Your Honor"?Anyway,I am writing to you to respond to a recent blog over at HP regarding sentencing and HP unfortunately has sever restrictions on the amount of words one can respond with.So here goes and I realize it may offend you but I just believe in what I am about to say to you:You are not being completely honest when you talk about how thoughtfully you made sentencing decisions.Having worked with defense attorney's and been to more trials than I want to think of, I can attest to judges who could care less about letters, family concerns, etc and simply go with what the guidelines as well as what the AUSA's tell the judges they have to sentence someone to.I wrote a letter in response to a legal comment by Alex Kozinski that was published in the Law Review arguing against his belief the USSG were too lenient and should be made tougher as he liked not having to really look into the history of a defendant but went strictly by the USSG which are barbaric to say the least.. My letter had to do with the fact sentencing was more about what the calculator said than what the defendant's history and family had to say. AND what the AUSA had to say which ALWAYS carried more wight than anything else on Earth.AUSA's routinely let judges know they have NO say in the matter. In fact all I ever saw was UPWARD movement in sentences when a defendant was not properly remorseful and contrary come sentencing time. I was in a courtroom run by Judge McKibben in Las Vegas who got angry at a defendant for not being remorseful because a jury found him guilty and he still pled his innocence. So he added 7 months to his sentence because he could. NO prior history and was more guilty through association than anything else which when I began doing footwork for defense and appellate attorney's, practically made me cry.I saw a 18 year old sentenced to 19 years for a FIRST offense regarding meth which his uncle sold and because he was in the house he was arrested as well even though he did not live with the uncle and was a top student with NO history of any crime or drug use and was on his way to college and his uncle said he had nothing to do with it but was simply visiting the same time he was raided.The JUDGE refused to allow the uncle to testify in behalf of his nephew. The AUSA gave him the max because he couldn't rat anyone out. The uncle got 4 years because he "co-operated" with the DEA and was able to turn his suppliers in.The judge got angry at the nephew because he kept saying he didn't have anything to do with it and had taken it to a jury who didn't believe him. THAT was when we found out the judge had refused to allow the uncle to testify because the AUSA successfully argued that the uncle would simply lie to get his nephew off rather than admit they had either made a mistake or that the jury would believe them and they wouldn't get a conviction.We interviewed three of the jury a year later and all three of them broke down when they found out the sentence the 18 year old had gotten. They though he would get a sentence of probation since it was his first offense. One woman couldn't stop crying. She couldn't believe she had helped destroy a young boy's life when she thought she was teaching him a lesson and that probation would make him realize how lucky he was not to have gotten something more serious.I interviewed the kid at Lompoc medium security prison in 2000 and he was already gone. He had been in custody for almost a year at that point and to say he was mentally gone was to put it mildly. In private interview he cried constantly, he didn't understand why he had gotten such a long sentence when he hadn't done anything at all. We tried our best,and I am not sure how it ended up because I finally had to quit.I couldn't take it anymore.
Pt 3Another guy in Lompoc finally got out after his daughter, after hitting the age of 18 came back and told the AUSA that her mother had put her up to it when she was 8 in order for mom to get everything and then they moved to Texas. He served 11 years before a judge would grant him release. The prosecutor finally agreed he was set up.As for other SO offenses, seriously have you ever really looked at what every SO is about in this country?.As for your contention that any SO cannot be rehabbed or is not really a danger to society simply shows you really have no grasp of what is really out there. A violent crime whether against a minor or adult is simply that...a violent crime, add sex to the mix and it becomes even more heinous but today fewer and fewer hands on SO”s are ever being released.BUT something that is rarely taken into account....who made the charges, and was there any other reason for the charges being made? AND how many crimes today are considered sex offenses? Go look it up,the crimes are being ridiculously exploited.A man in Georgia walks out to get his paper and reaches in to scratch himself and because he is wearing boxer style shorts his testicles become very briefly visible, a young boy next door sees this, tells mom who calls the police,he is arrested, held for 7 days, is released, loses his job, is vilified as an SO, and ends up having to move. AND he is now a registered SO.The horror stories go on and on and on. And what I find most reprehensible by all judges is the fear factor. They are terrified that the man they may release will re-offend and thus will try to keep him behind bars forever.Remember Gov Gray? He refused to give ANYONE parole because he was terrified they might do something and thus he would be blamed...you can thank cowardly and sensationalistic media for that ALONG with the cowardly Gov.SO's have the lowest recidivism rate of ANY crime but like any parolee or probationer can be recharged for the dumbest of crimes. Drinking when they shouldn't, or getting high, or not finding a job fast enough, or myriad reasons. and the result is called RE-OFFENDING which the average citizen takes to mean they committed an SO again.So forgive me if I say I just don't buy any judge saying they took all things into consideration before sentencing. I have seen far too much evidence to show the contrary.
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