Letter to the Court

October 11, 2018

Clerk of Court:
District Attorney:
Honorable Judge:

Regarding bond 18 CR 050313 which was forfeited. I implore your mercy and forgiveness for my failure to appear resulting in this forfeiture. I apologize for not immediately notifying the court after my absence which compounded the trouble. Although my circumstance is not an excuse, I humbly ask that you consider the circumstance surrounding this failure to appear:

I live in a very rural area with no taxi service and no public transportation. I have no drivers license and an even larger hindrance is that I have no vehicle. I was so new to the area that i had not been introduced to mg neighbors who may have been able to help with transportation. Living 10 to 20 miles from court and being unfamiliar with the roads here made walking/hitchhiking/or bicycling difficult. Regardless, i seek not to excuse my absence but to apologize for it.

That $15,000 “Cash Only” bond for the marijuana charge was extremely difficult to make. The surety signer, my employer, had to drive up from Asheville and the funds came from family in Colorado.

The subsequent case regarding my medicine research lab has a $300,000 bond which is impossible for me to make. My research findings are published online in Ph.D. medicine forums and I had expected that the rising interest in my publications would have lead to obtaining a sponsor or a research grant by now, however this lengthy incarceration has prevented that. Furthermore, at present I am unable to call upon family or friends to help me make this unreasonably high bond.

This pretrial detainment, without legal counsel, and in a facility without resources for referencing current law, case law, or general court rules and procedures leaves me significantly hindered from legal preparation.

In my current situation, the only bond I can possibly make is an unsecured appearance bond. Please find mercy on my situation and consider that my research work and nearly 25 years professional experience surrounding medicine and health care systems has the best intentions for society and the community. I submit that my case is misunderstood and the facts will reveal themselves. In the interest of justice, please entitle me to a presumption of innocence by granting me an unsecured bond.

Without any legal references I am unsure how to put myself on the court calendar to hear this motion. My resources have been unable to locate the 23rd Judicial District local rules of the District Court Division, however rule 14.1 for the 26th District states that “Attorneys requesting cases to be added should request the District Attorney to sign the addition slip” therefore this letter has been mailed in duplicate to both the DA and the Clerk of Court.

The extremely lengthy delay in my case in District Court bestows an unfair advantage to the prosecution who perpetually continues the case. Lacking reference for the 23rd District , in the 26th District rules 4.3b states that trial shall be within 30 days of charge. Rules 4.5 state factors to be considered when deciding continuances.

Rules 4.5 state factors to be considered when deciding to grant or deny a motion to continue:

a) effective assistance of counsel
b) the age of the case
c)the incarceration or detention status of the defendant

In consideration of all this, in the interest of justice, and presumption of innocence please grant this motion for an unsecured bond on the next available court calendar.

Furthermore, in the event that we can settle this matter in District Court, I am willing to negotiate. I admit to having been conducting my research without permits, however I have never been party to any sales of controlled substances neither was I in possession of any more than very small amounts consistent with research purposes. To reach a quick resolution, I will forego all civil charges against Ashe County for violation of Due Process, for Malicious Prosecution, for Defamation of Character in erroneous media publications, for confiscation of 138 items which were not subject to confiscation, and for the improper conditions during detainment. Otherwise all of these items will be submitted to the Federal US District Court in the form of a U.S.C. 1983 Civil Suit which is already largely prepared based on the history of this case which is published online at: http://www.GuiltyUntilProvenWealthy.home.blog

The ACLU is interested in representing my case. Please advise me if I should retain them or if we might come to a speedy resolution.

I hope that mercy and forgiveness might prevail between Ashe County and myself for our failures to adhere to proper procedures.

Sincerely,

Brian Aberle

Advertisements

Official Capacity

The situation I am in is unbearable.  I have virtually no access to law books and I am facing 20 years while being fully self-represented.

I have been asking night shift and day shift deputies for ‘legal request forms’ – paper forms that Sharon Price says must be used for any law lookup request.  Day shift, after being reminded several times, ignored my request.  The night shift said they don’t even know what is a ‘legal information request form.’

Finally, I obtained a nearly impossible to obtain and official “legal request form”:  I asked for the 2018 federal sentencing guidelines for DMT and a list of motions relevant in District Court.

The form was returned, answered by Sharon Price:  She said she is not obligated to give me any legal reference material besides “the general statutes with which I am charged.”  She is mistaken.

Additionally, she took the liberty to offer her own legal advice – which I did not ask for:  Captain Sharon Price wrote, “What you need to do is request standby counsel to be appointed by a judge, as I understand that as of 9-20-18 Mr. Baker is no longer your court-appointed lawyer.”

Huh?  She won’t provide me the legal reference about my rights for standby counsel, despite in a previous hearing I actually requested exactly that and the judge told me “he thinks but is not certain that North Carolina no longer allows standby counsel.”

Where does Captain Sharon Price derive her advice from?  Why is she advising me now?  Now that Garland Baker is not?  The four motions I just properly filed and served on the DA on the 20th – have they been heard?  Why could they not be heard that day?  Do I need to be put on the docket to have them heard?  How is that done?  Why will the DA not speak directly with me?  Especially if I have no legal counsel?

No Grievances? No Problem!

My grievance was returned by Captain Sharon Price, dated Sept 18:

My request for legal reference material was responded to with “only specific information relating to your charges can be requested,” which is simply not true.  Nevertheless, I replied requesting current state and federal code, motions, and general court proceedings for reference material, plus current information regarding DMT laws:  The jail says it is only liable to give me the legal code for the crimes for which I am charged, which again is not true:  They owe defendants legal research material including case law, court proceedings, example motions, state and federal code – a typical jail or prison law library.

So, a deputy came and gave me “legal reference material” – I have been asking verbally, in writing and with grievances to get law books that will help me prepare for trial.  I was handed five printed pages of drug laws that make no mention of DMT anywhere on them.  The deputy was kind about it when I pointed out the insufficiency in what he handed me.  I had to sign that I received it, so next to my signature I put (1 of 4 requests) because the Motions, Case Law, and Federal code which I asked for were not included – and the state code that was given to me made mention of Marijuana, Cocaine, Methamphetamine, and MDMA – but nothing regarding DMT – so it is of little use.

As for all outstanding digital grievances:  The administration dismissed thousands of outstanding “grievances”. “Those grievances were not delivered,” was the reason given.  The jail rules handbook states that grievances should be filed on the digital kiosk.  That is were ALL inmates have been filing them since last year – none of which have been responded to – all of which are now deleted.

Tiger by the Tail

Officer Chris Eldreth never called me back, but Sheriff Jim Hartley did:  He advised that I put my grievance in writing and mail it to him, so I did:  Certified mail goes out tomorrow, and emails have already been dispatched.  I post my grievances here for the record, and because I’m concerned about Brian’s safety and well-being.

My first grievance concerns the abjectly unprofessional treatment I received from Officer Chris Eldreth on the morning of Friday, September 7, 2018:  I agree with Officer Chris Eldreth’s assessment that if I was physically in Ashe County, I would be unable to oppose the violence of ACSO – I hope my 1,500 mile distance is enough of a firewall to keep the boots of ACSO off my neck.

My second grievance concerns the incomplete and out-of-date contents of the legal library at the ACSO detention center:  By all accounts, the condition of the law library, and possibly the detention center as a whole, is abysmal.

How the ACSO Grievance Process “Works”

I called the ACSO this morning to file a grievance with them about the condition of their legal library in their detention center:  Their library is grievously out-of-date and incomplete.

After calling them back (they put me through to voicemail first), I was transferred to and greeted on speakerphone by at least one person who identified himself as Officer Chris Eldreth.

I introduced myself to Officer Eldreth and thanked him for helping me to file a grievance.  I explained to him the nature and substance of my complaint, and I told him I am looking for two things from the grievance:

  1. I’d like to know who is responsible for the legal library in the detention center.  If it’s not ACSO, then who?
  2. I’d like to have an inventory list of the legal library in the detention center.

When I asked Officer Eldreth how the grievance process gets started, he didn’t answer my question and instead began to aggressively interrogate me.  For a few minutes, I answered his barrage of questions, despite his repeated and hostile interruptions.

Officer Eldreth refused to answer every single question I asked him – so I finally asked him if he was also going to refuse to accept my grievance.

Silence.

So I asked the question again:  “Are you refusing to accept my grievance?”

Still no answer.

I asked him if we were on a recorded line, and for a third time, “Officer Eldreth, are you refusing to accept my grievance?”  Finally, he answered my question – by hanging up the phone.

The secretary sounded confused when I greeted her for the third time – I called back; maybe the call got disconnected…  She put me through to Officer Eldreth – and I got his voicemail.

How’s THAT for a grievance process?