A gross miscarriage of justice

Allow me to describe the ‘Kangaroo Court’ process that I went through at Desert Vista in detail, because this was the most disappointing aspect of the experience for me.

I asked at one point if some of the staff most closely tied with the courts knew what percentage of defendants were found not guilty of insanity (I’ll use the terms that, as the one on trial, I felt most aligned with the specific situation.  I know when I used these terms at the hospital, they hated it, but given the sentence is 1 year of court ordered treatment/probation, terms such as ‘defendant’ and ‘guilty’ strike me as appropriate.)  Once they clarified their definitions for me, they weren’t sure what percentage ‘got off.’  I asked them to give me a ballpark, was it a quarter, half (knowing the answer would be less than these, and old sales tactic to gauge their response and peel out any attempts at obfuscation) sure enough, after a very subtle ‘I’ve been caught’ look, each individual I asked had ‘no idea,’ not even for a ballpark figure, what percentage of defendants were found ‘not crazy.’  Sitting where I was sitting, I could tell that this meant the chances were virtually zero of beating this, but I was determined to give it a solid try.

My friends and I pulled out all the stops.  I play D&D on a weekly basis with several individuals far smarter than myself (mathematicians, physicists, etc), and they are all well aware of my brand of quirky.  One friend in particular, a PHD in Physics with some history of mental illness himself that he was open to sharing on, was willing to take the stand on my behalf.  So I had a courtroom full of support, and a well qualified character witness (there would have been more, but my lawyer recommended fewer for the sake of time and clarity of message).

Additionally, there was some issue with the prosecution’s case.  They needed to have at least two witnesses for the case to be valid, but one of the officers needed to go before the case could start.  They pulled my mom to act as their second witness.  My mom, of all people.  I was livid- who compels the defendants mother to testify against him moments before the case is going to start?  It completely altered the emotional state of the hearing, and I would consider this whole aspect of the ordeal to be a ‘low blow’ which is probably another reason the trial is getting so much attention.

Now keep in mind that I was also not looking for a ‘not crazy’ verdict.  I think if that were what I was shooting for, there would have been cause for concern given my particulars, but I was looking to pursue medication and treatment on a voluntary basis, rather than being involuntarily required to do it on a court ordered basis.  I had demonstrated not just a support network, but provided reasonable doubt that what had happened was temporary in nature (I recognize that my condition requires a more consistent touch, but legally I felt I had crossed that threshold).  In the end, it was apparent that the judge was going through the motions, looking for which keywords she would use to provide the verdict of Court Ordered Treatment.  I was looking to provide transcripts to back up how much of a travesty this process is for anyone that may be going through it, but unfortunately they were $30 and buried under an unknown number of layers of court bureaucracy to claim them, after an unclear amount of time (the process described reminded me of the Vogon’s from Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy).

While the judge probably had her own motives for this, Pharmaceutical Companies couldn’t pay to have a better system in place to have tax-payers paying for psychiatric medications for Arizona residents.  While my verdict might strike you as fair, and honestly I didn’t see the need to fight the outcome, the system needs revision- this medication driven machination has one goal for each of the patients put in there, which they will pursue to the exclusion of all other options, even in situations where another option my be preferable, and that is to find solid enough reasoning to send each patient away with 1 year of court ordered medication.  They have become exceptionally efficient at it, too much so.

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~ by songoflove on March 6, 2017.

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