Friday, August 8, 2014

The other IAD

It's not a roadside bomb.

It's the Interstate Agreement on Detainers.  A super boring name for something that all states have signed onto requiring states to bring someone to trial within 6 months of a demand to be brought to trial made by a prisoner in another state.  The "detainer" is any kind of hold another state makes on a prisoner.  In a prison.

This law sounds, super awesome.  Imagine me using hand gestures for that.  Super.  Awesome.

Here's how it works though:

Prisoner is in local jail and finds out about this, somehow pencils it together.  RESULT: laughed out of court.

Prisoner is in prison.  Cannot get prison to figure out what he's talking about.  Time goes by without him filing the proper paperwork.  RESULT: dies in prison.

Prisoner is in prison.  Prison officials give him paperwork to ask that his detainer be quashed.  RESULT: probably dies in prison.

Prisoner is in prison.  Somehow manages to file proper paperwork.  RESULTS:

1. Local DA is like huh? signs papers, demands trial.  Sheriff never does anything.  DISMISSED! Woooot

(DA could just let it go, but.. nah)

2. Local DA is like huh? signs papers, demands trial.  Sheriff comes and gets you.  Now shit gets interesting.

So many new variables!  You've heard of speedy trial rights, you didn't know that mostly they just end in a dismissal without prejudice, going to jail all over again, and repeating your hell.  But with the IAD on your side, dismissal MUST be with prejudice.  Shit. Just. Got.  Interesting.

You're in Idaho.  You go to court.  Do you want a preliminary hearing?  You use a prelim to test your case, possibly to get charges.. dismissed.  WITHOUT PREJUDICE.

WHAT DO YOU DO???  You might win.  If you win, now the state will crush your tiny baby soul by REFILING CHARGES.  All the work you did: fucked.  Your six month clock: dead.  You: die in prison.

Next: to take a deal.

The state is all: agree to horrible deal, stupid idiot trapped in hell with no real choices.  You're all: what?  you have one month to try my case.  Puh-leeez.

But then: judges realize the DA is a fucking moron, and fast track your case.  You don't really think the witnesses the state needs will show since they have like a week to pull it off.

WHAT DO YOU DO????  Will they crash and burn?  Or convict your stupid ass?  Why did the state have to push you this far?

Oh I dunno, probably because they lose nothing by screwing with you.

The IAD: making shit get all crazy since 1970.

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