Tuesday, April 27, 2010

That's Okay We Don't Need No Stinkin' Evidence, You're Guilty Anyways!

The Charleston, South Carolina Post and Courier is reporting on the local magistrate who convicted a criminal defendant in abstentia without the presentation of that little detail we like to call,  evidence. 

That's right folks, Mary Brown Holmes a magistrate judge at the Ravenal/Adams Run Court got herself a public reprimand for finding a criminal defendant guilty of misdemeanor "simple assault" when the defendant failed to appear for trial--without any testimony and without any admissible evidence introduced against the defendant.  Magistrate Judge Brown casused a letter to be mailed out to the defendant informing the defendant that she had 15 days to pay a fine and court costs imposed by the court as a penalty or spend 30 days in jail.  The defendant explained her absence by telling the Post and Courier that she thought she had a deal with the prosecutor to dismiss the charges.  Apparently not. 

Do not skip your court dates.  Go to court.  Generally, speaking if you do not show up for court a warrant for your arrest will be issued.  In the rare instance, the court may proceed but with the proper notice to you and with actual evidence of your guilt to the charges being introduced in the proper fashion.

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