Public awareness of our judicial system is needed in the age of mass incarceration. During election season, not much information is shared with the public about candidates running for judge or district attorney. The courthouse is a government entity that should be held accountable to the public.
For many years I lived in Hernando County, Florida. I became aware of the corruption that lurks within the walls of the Courthouse of Brooksville, Florida. One horror story after the other with details hidden from the public. The local media reports come from the angle of the prosecution. I witnessed courtroom events, communicated with people about their cases, and heard from residents that lived in the area for generations. The system is a mess because generational families have established a local system to be just the way they like it.
There was a prosecutor that is now a judge who at her time as a prosecutor railroaded cases through the system for a win. I know this because I saw first hand cases proceeding from pre-trial to trial. A corrupt tape was all that was needed to railroad any case and detectives dutifully provided it to the prosecution.
I became familiar with the interrogation procedure while stationed in the Coast Guard investigations office as a yeoman. The special agents always performed investigative work after an interrogation to verify information attained through the interrogation. Hernando County detectives skipped that particularly crucial step after their interrogations. The detectives were permitted to edit the interrogation tape prior to sending it to the prosecutor. The prosecutor was able to further edit the tape prior to trial. The prosecutor is given absolute immunity, therefore, not accountable for railroading citizens into the prison system. How this remains legal is mind boggling.
Knowing this prosecutor now sits on the bench as a judge is infuriating. The prosecutor’s role is to hold those who commit crime accountable, not anyone and everyone, whether a crime is committed or not.
Further, in a case I was familiar with, the created tape clearly showed that it did not coincide with documented history, yet that fact did not matter. A jury was fed false information from the prosecution and that is permissible by law. Sadly, many people sit on juries with a belief that the case they are hearing was fully investigated.
The detectives and the prosecutor appeared to have a sick relationship based on railroading citizens into the for-profit prison system never considering the people they were setting up have loved ones, families, and friends. Absolute immunity is responsible for corrupt entities to harm who knows how many lives for a win.
It is horrifying to think the sense of entitlement held by detectives and prosecutors who intentionally fabricate evidence and sell it to a jury. The media reports this falsehood as if it were true. We are aware of cases where wrongful convictions were later overturned that the original media accounts were false. A person was slandered, and freedom taken away because the prosecution wanted a win.
How is it possible to fix a corrupt system that is put together just the way they like it?
A system so corrupt from within that guilt or innocence no longer matter, is so far removed from any semblance of a real justice system. The for-profit prisons require 90 percent full bed capacity. Each day as the corrupt freely engages in life, there are many whose life was harmed for a win. I saw first hand a corrupt prosecutor freely engage in corrupt behavior that concluded with a life sentence in one case and thirty years in another. The price paid for not accepting her plea deal. A corrupt tape with no evidence was all that was needed to destroy a life. The governor later appointed this corrupt prosecutor to the judgeship. It’s a sick world we live in where the corrupt are rewarded for their destructive behavior and given the title; The Honorable Judge.