What if just hypothetically, you had spoken out against the government or exposed government corruption. Then you’re pulled over by police and they look at your driver license and say, "Yeah that looks like the guy." You are arrested and taken downtown and booked on a charge of conspiracy to distribute cocaine.
You protest your innocence but in court the police testify that although they did not find any drugs on you. They observed you holding plastic bags that they believed had drugs in them and found a cache of 50 vials of crack under a stoop half a block from where you were sitting.
You explain in your defense, you have no connection to the drugs, you work for the city and they think highly of you. You have no criminal record other than a teenage arrest for fighting. Your employer comes to your defense and testifies under oath that you were at work when the police supposedly saw you with those bags.
Surely, you couldn’t be convicted on such spurious charges could you? No connection to the drugs at all and the only evidence against you at all is a policeman who said you were holding baggies that might have had drugs in them. Could you go to jail in America on such charges? Land of the free home of the brave? Of course not! With our system of checks and balances you couldn’t possibly go to jail just because a policeman said so.
So then they charge you again and arrest you again! Despite the fact that a jury could not reach a decision in your first trial. Despite the backlog in the courts and the cost to the community. Despite your personal history of gainful employment and no criminal record in your adult life a prosecutor thought that the merits of the case called for a retrial.
Then you’re convicted in your second trial.
In August 2006 Fred Curry of Baltimore MD video tapped the arrest of his Uncle Wayne Curry on the street by Baltimore police. Wayne Curry is standing handcuffed next to a police car, he is struck and thrown to the ground then violently dragged back to the police cruiser. When the video tape surfaced it caused outrage in the black community for like so many of these video’s the policemen involved where white and the suspect was black and in handcuffs and unable to resist.
Fred Curry was arrested during a drug sweep when according to witnesses police arrested him only after his identity became known. The witness Sheldon Richburg testified under oath, "They asked him what his name is, and then they handcuffed him and said, ‘We’ll do you like you did us,’"
Curry’s first trial ended in May with a hung jury and Attorney Granville Templeton said, "Clearly they want to get him out of the way; the drug charges his client faces are retaliation for his involvement in making the tape that embarrassed the department.
But during second trial the judge, Baltimore Circuit Judge Albert Matricciani issued a gag order during the trial and barred Curry’s attorney from mentioning the videotape during closing arguments or speaking to the media. Templeton argued after the verdict the video was crucial to his case.
Now why would the judge do that? The crux of your defense is that you are being maliciously prosecuted. The police find no drugs on you, witnesses testify you were not in the area when the police claim they saw you with baggies. Witnesses testify that the police even said, ‘We’ll do you like you did us,’" but without the ability to present or even mention the video what defense does Fred Curry have?
Fred Curry, 36, was found guilty of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute and conspiracy to distribute after two hours of deliberation by a city jury. Both crimes carry a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 10.
Margaret Burns, spokeswoman for Baltimore City State’s Attorney Patricia Jessamy, applauded the verdict. "This case is an example of how a thorough police drug investigation can yield a significant conviction and substantial jail time," she said. "The prosecutor worked closely with police detectives in a partnership that benefits public safety."
This is no more justice than a Gestapo arrest and the only thing the prosecutors proved was that they couldn’t win the case without denying Fred Curry the tools to defend himself. The streets of Baltimore are no safer there are no less drugs or drug dealers loose on the streets. The only ones made safer are the thugs in government, I said thugs and I mean thugs whether you swing a billy club or a gavel the American revolution was meant to protect us from them not by them.
That freedom of speech against the government is the most essential and only one worth having for anything else is faux freedom. A sugar coated illusion for elementary school textbooks and the minds of idiots.
The citizens of Baltimore owe Fred Curry not only an apology but also a thank you for exposing police brutality. A brutality that will never get better by itself and extends to the highest levels of the judiciary.