Jul 13 2007

Robert’s Comments

Posted by J. Craig Canada in linda lemasters, Police, robert norse, trial

I recorded an interview with community TV yesterday which should be shown in a couple of weeks, and hopefully I can get a video file I can post here, as well as an interview I did several months ago. Here are Roberts comments regarding my blog.

Congratulations on your victory, Craig!

And a salute to Linda Lemaster, whose articulate and experienced
testimony, wowed (and perhaps educated) Judge Denine Guy.

I don’t think the ACLU was interested yet in this case. Local ACLUster Don Zimmerman is keeping an eye on Sleeping Ban stuff, but not raising his voice or raising the issue with the local ACLU or the northern California chapter.

But we are hoping to sue the police and rangers to stop them from criminalizing sleep and covering up with blankets.

As you know, the L.A. “Jones” decision has stopped police in Los Angeles, San Diego, and (indirectly) Richmond from harassing, citing, or arresting homeless people at night for sleeping. Though, of course, they find plenty of other excuses to harass them.

The “necessity defense” which Judge Guy actually walked you through (amazingly enough) is a complicate one that requires you to admit you “did the crime”, but then argue that you had to do it “as a matter of necessity”.

You must prove six conditions:

(1) the defendant must have acted to prevent a significant evil;

(2) there were no adequate alternatives to performing the act;

(3) the harm caused by the act was not disproportionate to the harm avoided;

(4) the defendant had a good faith belief that the act was necessary;

(5) the defendant’s “objective belief was reasonable under all the circumstances; and

(6) he did not substantially contribute to creating the emergency.”

Individual defendants who are not medical marijuana users but who are homeless with no legal place to sleep can still successfully argue that the above conditions hold.

Particularly if they subpoena shelter providers/politicians like Ken Cole, Paul Brindel, or Ryan Coonerty and ask them about the shelter shortage.

Hopefully I’ll be getting a flyer out on this issue for defendants to use, once they disqualify the abusive referee Kim Baskett by giving a letter stating they believe her to be prejudiced and citing 170.6 CCP, the code that allows a preemptive challenge.

Actually the City Attorney, City Manager, and Police Chief are currently violating the Constitution and the obvious impliation of the Los Angeles “Jones” decision, which states that you can’t cite homeless people for “sleepcrime” when there is an established lack of shelter for most of them.

That’s been true since April 2006 when the 9th Federal Court of Appeals so
ruled. These officials have been violating the Constitution ever since.

We are now gathering plaintiffs who have gotten Sleeping tickets to sue these officials and require the City to (1) stop all camping tickets of homeless people until there is adequate shelter (i.e. when hell freezes over); (2) pay some fat attorneys fees; and (3) provide restitution to
those they have maliciously ticketed.

Time for Ranger Wallace–who continues to destroy homeless property–to exit stage left.

I’m hoping to read a longer story about the historic trial soon from one of the trial observers.

In the meantime, look for weekly protests in front of Vice-Mayor and Sleeping Ban supporter Ryan Coonerty’s Bookshop Santa Cruz (he works there; his father Supervisor and Ban supporter Neal Coonerty owns it). Every Sunday 2 PM at 1520 Pacific…and maybe into the night for a series of sleep-out’s once we get our sleeping bags ready to unroll!

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