Sunday, September 06, 2009

Class Action Lawsuit Aganist Shelby County

Late last week a story broke about a man named Terrance Datcher, who was arrested on March 18, 2009 by the Harpersville police, on charges of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

Datcher then spent the next six months in jail and was told by Shelby Co. officials that he had to pay $6,000 in fines before he would be allowed a hearing before the judge.

According to the Birmingham News "Judge Hub Harrington said Datcher's nearly six months in jail was longer than any sentence had he been convicted of the misdemeanors. Harrington said he will set a hearing to determine whether Datcher's civil rights were violated and whether to grant an injunction to keep Harpersville from holding indigent inmates for jail terms similar to Datcher's".

Sadly stories of indigent people being held for outrageous amounts of time in jail on misdemeanor charges are becoming all too common in Alabama. There have been at least two cases recently in Jefferson County and one in Mobile County. In the Mobile Co. incident the inmate was mentally ill and was beaten to death in an argument over the television. In one Jefferson Co. case the city of Birmingham has agreed to stop jailing indigent inmates on misdemeanor charges simply because they are unable to pay. There has been no verdict oin the Irondale case.

They never should have been holding indigent people on misdemeanor charges to begin with. Our Constitution prohibits that. Why is it that when we break the law we are jailed but when the people who jail us break the law and nothing happens to them? They don't set a very good example do they?

I heard from sources close to the case that Mr. Datcher is also mentally ill. I also know that a Class Action lawsuit is in the works against Shelby County because of Mr. Datcher's treatment. If you have ever been through Harpersville and your rights were violated please contact the law firm of Pino and Associates.

Harpersville is a very small town on the Shelby Co./Talladega Co. line on HWY 280. It is a speed trap like no other anywhere in Alabama. Harpersville also likes to set up traffic stops on 280 in the wee hours of the morning and harass unsuspecting motorists. I went through one in 2008 on my return trip from Vancouver, Canada. As far as I am aware that traffic stop was illegal because police cannot impede the flow of traffic on a major 4 lane highway. In other word they cannot set up license checks on 280 at any time. I escaped my encounter unscathed. Many others have not.

I've heard from more than one reputable source that if you get caught with marijuana in Harpersville they will drop the drug charge and charge you will possession of paraphernalia because the fine is higher.

Anyway, if you have been stopped going through Harpersville or anywhere else in Shelby Co. and you feel your right were violated then contact Pino and Associates and get in on this class action lawsuit. Likewise, if you know anyone who has experienced injustice in Shelby Co. have them contact Pino and Associates.

1 comment:

trizzybob said...

In the criminally insane Town of Parrish Alabama one will be treated as an adversary if one dares to complain about anything.

During my most recent troubles, I was detained at 2 o'clock pm on a tuesday and I didn't get any food or water until 6:30 am on wedsday. That day I had free access to water because I was preforming mandatory labor to pay off a fine that I hadn't gotten yet. And I got food when the sanitation workers came in for lunch, and more food come just before returning to my cell. but I didn't get any more food or WATER until about 10:30 am on thurday. that evening I grow tired of people coming and going from the cell area and not offering me any food or water, so I staged a little protest, disassembled and drank from a toilet while giving these people the respect they've garnered ....I gave them hell for about 2 hours before they gave in and gave me my food.

a month and a half or two months later, I caught a contempt of court charge for giving my Atterney of Record all the respect he had earned. Shortly after entering my cell I began begging for water. My first two plees went unanswered but my third plee recieved a reply of "WE'RE OUT". I simply blessed her heart and continued begging.