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My full probation story, for those of you that dont know.


Rick B.

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Around Sept. of 2005 a couple of my friends and I were driving home from costco. We had bought a large box of ice cream which im cutting open with a 3 inch pocket knife. We were in my car, I was in the passenger seat, my roomate mark was in the backseat, and my coworker Paul was driving. We turn onto the street where my apartment complex was located (also a busy street with businesses). We drive by Office Depot and there is a guy who looks familiar standing on the corner obviously staring down my car and as we pass his gaze follows my car as he crosses the street. I say he looks familiar because at the time my recent ex girlfriend always had a ton of people over at the apartment that i didnt really know that would hang out with her and sometimes would help clean up, and he looked like one of them. So anyway, I tell my friend Paul to turn around and we pull into the Office Depot parking lot and park next to one of the exits. i jump out of the car and the guy is walking up to me. We shake hands and realize we dont know each other. So, I ask if there is a problem, and why he is staring at my car watching where im going (since my apartment literally next door to Office Depot). He says, "theres no problem unless I make one," and the guy throws up his fists asking me if I want to fight. I say no for a few reasons, 1) he has a good 40lbs on me as well as being 4 inches taller than me, (im crazy, but not stupid, and I know a martial arts stance when i see one, I wrestled and played footbal, boxing was never my thing), and 2) my friends are in the car along with some really yummy sounding ice cream that i dont want to melt, and 3) he is obviously high on something and it definitely wasnt pot. One thing I know is to never fight a guy thats high, they dont feel pain so no matter what damage I do to him, he wont stop until one of us is unconcious. So after I say no, he says, "thats right you little pootie, id kill you in a fight," and he takes a step towards me. So I turn to my car and tell my friends to get out and they come towards us. The guys takes a step back and calls me a little bitch for not fighting him alone. So I tell my friends to get back in the car and the guy steps towards me again ready to fight. Im getting a little frustrated at this point because my ice cream is melting and I pull the pocket knife out and flip it open. I then stand my ground firmly with the knife at my side and I tell him I dont want to fight. He gets pissed and takes a swing at my head, I side step to dodge the punch and instinctively swing my arm up to counter his punch. Problem is, since Im just reacting and not thinking at the moment, I cut open his arm from the elbow down to the wrist. The knife severed all five tendons and both arteries in less than a second and it takes him awhile to notice it. In fact, he doesnt notice until he pulls him arm back to get into another fighting stance and sees the blood. He screams, my friend Paul screams, and Mark's jaw just drops. Paul then jumps out of my car with my keys and runs away. The guy I just cut runs across the street screaming for help, and the people in their suv behind me stare blankly. Me and Mark try chasing Paul so I can get my keys to move my car, but that white boy could run fast. So, mark and I push my car into a parking space and leave it at the scene. We then run to my apartment to find paul and he is gone. I change clothes and call him trying to get my keys. He comes back and we drive to get my car. Too late, the sherriffs dept is all over it and witnesses are giving statements. Paul drops me off and leaves. I walk around and meet mark at a walmart across the street and we both try to figure out what we are going to do. My dad calls me after a few minutes saying the sherriffs dept showed up at his house as well as my apartment looking for me. I freak out and we decide together that Im going to turn myself in. So, he and I go the the sherriffs dept together and do exactly that. I get interrogated and then Im taken to jail where i spend the night and get charged with multiple felonies. After getting bailed out the next day, I find out from my dad that if i specificly said in these words, "it was self defense," then I wouldnt have been charged. Thats what the detective told my dad while i was in a holding cell waiting to go to jail. So Im like great. Thats just magical.

 

Next, I go to court. I have a public defender. He goes in and declares a conflict of interest because he had just recently defended the "victim" in a recent felony assault case, (which is bonus points to me because this other guy has a long felony record of violence and I have no priors, that the court knows about). So I get another attorney from the alternate public defenders dept. This attorney is awesome, she spent countless hours investigating witnesses, police reports, and everything building me a wonderful defense case that I could win with. She even found out that the "victim" in my case was high on meth at the time, (booyah! i was right there!). She also found out the record of this guy. He went out and beat a person down with a bat for no reason, he also shot a person in the face with pellet guns, he even resisted arrest and got in a scuffle with a deputy for one of his previous charges. Im excited at this point cuz this is a real scum bag. Even the deputies, even though they couldnt officially say it, were happy I cut the guy because maybe it would keep him from causing anymore trouble. But sadly, my attorney retired halfway through my case. ugh.

 

I get another attorney, she stays with me for 2 weeks before im assigned yet another one. This one is an actual private attorney that the state hired me. So Im like kudos! I might still be ok. Turns out, I was wrong. The first day I meet with this attorney he tells me Im going to jail and that he would be surprised if the judge put me in jail that same day during court. Guess how happy I was. Well, this attorney does a really bad job at defending me but luckily I didnt go to jail that day and he was surprised that I didnt. Well, now that I cant trust this attorney, I dont want to chance a trial with im so I took a plea bargain. I plead to assault with a deadly weapon which is a felony. The catch was though, as part of my plea bargain, I was given the opportunity to have it reduced to a misdemeanor if not have it completely cleared off my record which is cool.

 

Well 6 months down the road I file a motion with this attorney to have my felony reduced and we get to the hearing, the D.A.'s office makes their case why It shouldnt be reduced and now its my attorneys turn. He gets to the stand, says I want it reduced so I can rejoin the military or possibly look into a law enforcement career. The judge asks why the military would want such a hot tempered young man in their service and my attorney simply says, "i dont know, but they do." My attorney then decides to throw his hands in the air and say, "Ill leave it in the courts hands to decide and I request to be removed from this case." He didnt bother to defend me at all. He could have explained that the "victim" was high at the time or that he had a long felony record of violence, but instead he just quit without telling the judge that I wasnt a hot tempered young man, (the judge was blind by the way so he couldnt see that I was well dressed and groomed for this court appearance). So, in the end, the judge denied my motion and said I cant appear before him for at least 18 months with another motion. That was in like May of '06.

 

In my defense though, I went to the motion completely prepared. After I was sentenced to my case, I had paid all of my fines and restitution in full, which was about $5000. When I was given a probation officer and I showed him the receipts for it, he was astonished and said that he knew he wouldnt have to worry about me. Two weeks later he had me transferred to the lowest level probation possible where i keep in touch with them by mail and I see them once a year. No random drug tests or searches, nothing, just a friendly letter once a year to check up on me. Of course my attorney could bring any of this up. Ugh. Anyways, thats the whole deal. Its also nearly impossible for me to find a full time or even part time job because of the record, which is the main reason why I wanted it reduced. I mean come on, Mcdonalds does a background check and wont hire me, trust me, Ive tried. So Ive been sticking with my extra work and production assistant work in LA. It pays, but not regular enough for me to be comfortable. Im barely able to pay some of my bills.

 

edit:now you understand the meaning of my avatar. =)

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You are a bad man Rick... A very bad man.

 

I am not!!!! Im actually a pretty cool guy when Im not stabbing people. really I am!! o:)

 

Looks like you cant appear before him ever.

 

this is true. lol

 

so its all really just bs and the lovly legal system of democracy fracked you over?

 

yes. sucks doesnt it.

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hey man. i was just joking around about the stabbing thing. look, i didnt go out that day looking for trouble. i didnt plan on cutting his arm. i really didnt. a human being almost died because of me, thats not something that weighs lightly on my concious. it really isnt. the knife was an intimidation thing. and if a cop was in that same situation where someone was high on drugs came at him, he would be able to use deadly force if he felt threatened. my dad was working DC metro about 10 years ago and he shot a guy 6 times that was high on pcp before the guy dropped. look, im not trying to defend myself, i know i did something wrong, but either i shouldnt have been the only one punished for it, or my punishment shouldnt have been made so severe. the only reason why the DA's office didnt drop my case entirely was because they wanted to save face. they didnt want the fact that they were going to convict a guy that was defending himself against a multiple offense felon.

 

edit: yet if im such a bad guy, then why several months afterwards was I one of the very few people that stopped in traffic to help a guy out that was in a motorcycle accident?

 

I know it looks bad. but i really am a good guy.

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You didn't do anything wrong. The guy was a threat to you, and you took steps to eliminate that threat. Don't be such a wimp. I'm only sad that he didn't die from his injuries. One less scumbag in the world would be a good thing. Sucks about the legal problems. The Public Defenders office sucks, and you should've hired your own attorney as soon as you were charged.

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wow man, you got screwed over big time. sorry about all of this. but yeah rick is a good guy, he saved some guys life a lil while ago. plus hes in my calc2 class. not really but this kid looks EXACTLY like you, i was freakin out a lil bit

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damn man that f*cking blows... i got arrested about a month ago at a party i was walking back into the party and the cops showed so i ran inside and the cop came in slammed me into the wall.. then slamed me 2 the floor and then pulled me to his car... it was fracked up he got me for 2 resisting arrests 1 fleeing and 1 resisting, public intox, and minor consumption.. i found out that if i went with a public defender i would spend atleast 15 days in jail.... then have to do alky classes and wat not.. so yea.. but we hired a attorney and he got 3 of the 4 charges droped and no jail time.. informal probation and alky classes.... thank god for attorneys :)

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my avatar kind of compares me with oj simpson. hence the irony. =)

 

edit: if i would have went to trial with that piece of sh!t attorney and lost, i would have been sentenced to 10 years in prison.

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