Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Wednesday, October 19, 2016

ACKERMAN, Miss. Pulled over for traffic violations, Jessica Jauch was held for 96 days in a Mississippi jail without seeing a judge, getting a lawyer or having a chance to make bail. She was charged with a felony based on a secretly recorded video that prosecutors finally acknowledged showed her committing no crime.

Only when she finally got a hearing and a lawyer, who persuaded prosecutors to watch the video, did the case fall apart.

Many of the circuit courts in rural Mississippi sit only twice a year.

Then, the 34-year-old mother sued, alleging violations of her rights to bail, legal representation, a speedy trial and liberty. But a federal judge dismissed her case against Choctaw County and Sheriff Cloyd Halford last month, ruling that because she had been indicted by a grand jury on the felony drug charge, none of her constitutional and legal rights were violated.

We have a fractured system where no one inside ever has to take responsibility.

More

Alternate links: Google News | Twitter

The outcome has flummoxed civil liberties advocates who have been waging legal battles to reform Mississippi's criminal justice system, which provides almost no state funding for public defenders.

Denying someone an appearance before a judge for 96 days after arrest does not pass constitutional muster. Similar lawsuits have been filed across the country. The American Civil Liberties Union is working state by state to force increased funding for public defenders, particularly in places where court-appointed lawyers depend on stingy local governments and court fees to get paid. The ACLU also has sued in California, Idaho, Louisiana, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania and Utah, following lawsuits elsewhere.

Pulled over for traffic offenses on April 26, 2012, Jauch was held thereafter because prosecutors relied on the word of an informant who said Jauch sold her eight Xanax pills for $40 in February 2011, according to court papers.

A Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics video showed Jauch asking to borrow the $40. But Jauch's lawyer in her federal suit, Victor Fleitas, said no one knew that because investigators and prosecutors apparently never watched the video before persuading the grand jury to charge her with selling a controlled substance. And she wasn't arraigned until the next court term in Choctaw County, three months later.

U.S. District Judge Sharion Aycock, however, ruled that people in Jauch's situation aren't required to get a court hearing within 48 hours, and that her right to a lawyer was satisfied by the appearance of a public defender at her arraignment, 96 days after her arrest.

"Put simply, the plaintiff was arrested and held on a valid felony grand jury indictment that established the existence of probable cause," Aycock wrote. "Therefore, the Fourth Amendment is not implicated here."

Comments

Admin's note: Participants in this discussion must follow the site's moderation policy. Profanity will be filtered. Abusive conduct is not allowed.

U.S. District Judge Sharion Aycock was appointed by George W. Bush. She should be removed from the bench.

#1 | Posted by danni at 2016-10-19 11:31 AM | Reply

"Pulled over for traffic offenses on April 26, 2012, Jauch was held thereafter because prosecutors relied on the word of an informant who said Jauch sold her eight Xanax pills for $40 in February 2011, according to court papers."

8 xanax, 14 months after the alleged sale, on the word of an informant, and she spends 3 months in jail?

#Mississippi

#2 | Posted by Hagbard_Celine at 2016-10-19 11:41 AM | Reply

Danni,

This judge properly applied the law. The problem is the law itself appears unconstitutional. On a different thread you were bashing the notion of SCOTUS striking down laws written by congress for being unconstitutional. Hopefully this illustrates for you why it is a proper role for the bench.

#3 | Posted by JeffJ at 2016-10-19 11:48 AM | Reply

"This judge properly applied the law. The problem is the law itself appears unconstitutional."

She was held without an opportunity to have a lawyer not to ask for bail. That was unconstitutional and that judge does not seem to care that her rights were violated. Hope this never happens to you Jeff but I'll bet your opinion will be quite different if and when it ever does.

#4 | Posted by danni at 2016-10-19 12:01 PM | Reply

"On a different thread you were bashing the notion of SCOTUS striking down laws written by congress for being unconstitutional"

Not sure which thread that was but the only other commentary about SCOTUS I've made today wasn't so much about the court striking down unconstitutional laws but more about how the court has for the last decade or so served big corporations and ignored the majority of the American people.

"The Corporate Court"

www.afj.org

#5 | Posted by danni at 2016-10-19 12:07 PM | Reply

U.S. District Judge Sharion Aycock was appointed by George W. Bush. She should be removed from the bench.

With you it's always about politics never about the law. Here is the court's opinion what does she write that is so wrong that she should be removed? cases.justia.com

#6 | Posted by et_al at 2016-10-19 01:44 PM | Reply

Danni,

The law itself is the problem, not the judge's application of it.

It's similar to asset seizure. It's legalized theft and it can be done without an arrest and charges brought. In order to try and recover the seized assets the person has to prove their innocence and then the government usually tries to cut a deal where only half is given back or some crap like that.

#7 | Posted by JeffJ at 2016-10-19 02:09 PM | Reply

It's similar to asset seizure

Something neither party does anything to stop and consequently is not in play this election.
But really, if you want to end civil forfeiture, end the War on Drugs.
That's where it's used.

#8 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-10-19 02:12 PM | Reply

This judge properly applied the law. The problem is the law itself appears unconstitutional.

Sounds like the judge was "just following orders."

#9 | Posted by snoofy at 2016-10-19 02:14 PM | Reply

Slashing Court and public defender budgets, so that poor people cannot get a fair, timely hearing, let alone trial is Conservative politics plain and simple. So tell me now, how its supposed to be only about the law, its literal interpretation, and not about politics.

American Justice is a for profit system which provides constitutional rights to everyone with a fat wallet.

#10 | Posted by nutcase at 2016-10-19 02:27 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

And they wonder why the poor and uneducated don't trust the system and strike back. This poor woman probably didn't even realize she had a right to a lawyer.

#11 | Posted by TFDNihilist at 2016-10-19 07:36 PM | Reply

This judge properly applied the law. The problem is the law itself appears unconstitutional.

#3 | Posted by JeffJ at 2016-10-19 11:48 AM | Reply | Flag:

Given that the Constitution can't be legally superceded, wouldn't this be an inproper application of the law?

#12 | Posted by Sully at 2016-10-20 09:37 AM | Reply

Comments are closed for this entry.

Home | Breaking News | Comments | User Blogs | Stats | Back Page | RSS Feed | RSS Spec | DMCA Compliance | Privacy | Copyright 2016 World Readable

-->
Drudge Retort