I use my own story as an example as it enables me to have first hand experience in this system and in turn just how it works when you have the resources or the access to said resources that can have major determining factors in the ultimate outcome.
I could go into the details again and again about what happened to me the night of Feb 8, 2012 but at one point it is just rehashing the facts as I know them. I know them until a point and then I have no knowledge of what transpired after my date and I had I had thought parted company or agreed to prior to my excusing myself to the ladies room and then all memories began to fade.
Since that time we have had the endless Bill Cosby revelations, the growth of the #MeToo movement and the idea that women must be believed. I can assure you that I could have taken on more debt, written more checks and hired and fired more Attorneys to mount my defense from what began as a DUI charge which ended up with an Appeal; There was a Civil Malpractice Case also appealed and both lost and my final relocation, name change, along with endless rage and anger that has not dissipated one iota 6 years later.
I now name my Attorneys and cite them as abject failures with regards to my defense. What should have been involuntary intoxication and in turn failure to follow the 4th Amendment and drawing blood without a warrant, violation by a City Managed hospital with regards to my Civil Rights turned into the most absurd trial and verdict upheld by two courts for reasons that still remain elusive. The Appellate Court Judge did not even bother to explain his reasoning for upholding the verdict and in turn my Attorney's never bothered to ask why nor even mount an adequate defense or appeal that dealt with the facts that mattered regarding the charges. They focused on the most absurd reasoning and basically dragged the case out for 4 years with no clear agenda or purpose other than the fact that they had bled me dry financially and were not going to see another check with my signature again so why bother and they changed their focus on the paying clients.
I have no regrets as I knew from Day one that no one believed me (I had gone through two other Lawyers who either were out of their depth and/or were assholes and spoke to many the same) so I knew few cared nor were willing to even listen. They selectively listen and in turn selectively care. Funny however that in passing to one of the many Lawyers who worked on my case recall me saying in confidence that I wanted to know what happened to me that night as I had a positive test for Herpes that needed to be explained. Well that positive test, however, is for Herpes Simplex I not II. A fact at the time I had not clarified nor had re-tested. But this did not surprise me as I had a history of cold sores and that is the virus that I have in my system and given my other oral history issues and my Bell's Palsy that makes sense. I never had sex, consensual or otherwise, the night of the 8th as I was in my car found unconscious prior to making it home and I was fully attired so no it is highly unlikely any sex occurred. And the tests at Planned Parenthood that I took two weeks after the accident only confirmed what I knew when I had Bells in 2000, that yes Herpes exists in my bloodstream. The blood test does not distinguish between types unless you show outward symptoms then it makes the connection. But at the time I was trying to figure out what happened to me, to understand date rape drugs, etc and I went there to get the medical support I needed and Planned Parenthood was pretty amazing at the time but even they knew that there was little they could do but test for STD/AIDS/HIV.
But during my outburst that day in court in a moment of rage I failed to distinguish that to this Attorney (Blair Russ another asshole times 10 since left Trombold's office), and being the good little boy he was he told Trombold and by then I could not retract or correct it but I also thought they would not do anything more with it as they did not have my consent to release my medical records, medical records that did not even have said test as I wisely went to Planned Parenthood, paid cash and would not release said records regardless. I would be wrong, Vosk and Trombold used that verbal outburst with no medical confirm as a basis and foundation of their entire argument in some bizarre misguided attempt for pity. Even asking me on the stand if I tested positive for an STD. Well that question would have put me at risk of perjury but again at that time I had not had any secondary testing to confirm said diagnosis so I said yes which I "believed" true. Since that time I did and given that result I was relieved but I had always "known" as I had never exhibited any symptoms or signs that said herpes was vaginal. That complicated test is expensive and again contributes to many being misdiagnosed or false positive when it comes to this virus.
But this went on and on and managed to be the primary argument in the appellate brief, no discussion about my defense of involuntary intoxication and how the Judge refused to accept that unless I got the date of that evening to testify in court. Nor was the primary argument about theviolation of 4th Amendment rights violated under federal law as decided by the Supreme Court and blood tests taken without warrant, that I had no sample to test myself in my own lab (The Police failed to take two adequate samples, shocking I know!). Nope these two men focused on a non existent virus in my vagina. Never once did they ask prior to the filing of said brief if I felt that was acceptable but they never did listen to one fucking thing I said. So regardless of how much money I paid, they never would. The Patriarchy was alive and well in the system of Justice and I will never forget that Trombold made me "dramatically re-enact" my last memory of that evening and in turn informed me that it was that moment when he finally "believed me." Any woman stupid enough to hire Kevin Trombold for any legal defense gets exactly what they deserve. As for Ted Vosk the abused and raped women of Juneau I feel for you as he will fail you as he failed me (Although he claims to be leaving the law, not soon enough clearly).
And yet I still feel strongly that everyone deserves their day in court and in turn representation willing to go the distance and in turn support if not believe their client. We need to hear their defense and in turn make the decision on hearing all the evidence and in turn the Prosecution should provide all that and do so with transparency. We know that it less truth and more gray than any 50 shades could ever provide. I watched the then City Attorney Jennifer Miller (now in private practice defending women, irony not lost) openly lie and her boss along with the Police do their best to make any fact and access to truth a near impossibility and this was a DUI people not Murder. And this story in Slate about Prosecutors across the country confirm that reality for many accused.
And yes even Defense Attorneys are not the beacons of truth and light. They have their own failings and in turn beliefs that can affect defense as I shared in my case. This one however is a death penalty case now before the Supreme Court and give the evidence and facts I see that it was a case to lose but it was still the client's rights to mount the defense he wanted regardless.
And yet I still believe in the right to a defense and due process. Perhaps if more expected it and demanded it it might lead to the reform and change it so needs as it will have more eyes that are both educated and financially able to see just how justice works. I saw it first hand the treadmill and the level of manipulation that transpires. I can say that Willie Gregory the Judge in my case was thoroughly out of his league (another irony is that he was the Judge during the Kat Williams debacle in Seattle at the time) and during trial where Attorneys there observing the supposed acclaimed duo of Trombold and Vosk, incredulous as to the level of incompetence, side bars and overrules that led Vosk to demand to quit, also refused, mid trial. It was a Kangaroo Court and most Municipal Judges throughout our Country are often ill prepared, educated and informed sufficiently to be in said positions of authority. So again while my case was bad there have been worse in courtrooms everywhere.
The foundations of Democracy exist for a reason regardless of the crime and the person. We have to open the doors and truly hear and see it all for as long as those remain in the shadows the truth will never have the sunlight it needs in which to heal. I moved across country, I changed my name and I have never healed. And why? I was never given the chance for Justice and Truth. We all deserve it and have the right to it.