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2017-01-07 - 8:56 a.m.

I just wrote for an hour or more and lost it! REALLY I so hate that.

CRAP I thought there was a back button , like there is in MS WORD and I accidentally hit the RELOAD button.

I had deleted in an attempt to shorten, and then realized that thought let to the NEXT topic ...and it flowed


wrote of so many things. They will remain unspoken here. LIFE IS GOOD overall and that is what matters.

SO BE it whether neighbor continues to be incarcerated. If he gets what he deserves no one is upset.

The only upsetting thing is that it is clear that those who enter our justice system who have money are not treated the same as those without; and it seems race is also a very real issue in treatment of people when they encounter our criminal justice system. If he DESERVES a consequence I get it... but I just want to ensure that the court really sees the picture of who this man is. The hearing this week was a BOND hearing and I was asked to write a letter as to who he is so the court can consider if he is a threat to society who should not be offered bond or not. In his case I can't see keeping him locked up PRETRIAL so he can not work as he has been gainfully employed (gosh never saw anyone so happy to get up at 5AM and delighted and THANKFUL to have a job to go to that he loves).

One thing I considered is perhaps the injustice that I find appalling is not that the poor man is incarcerated (for a crime yes) but rather that perhaps it was that I was initially angry at the injustice of the treatment being different as a rich which man was set free for far worse crime that this poor neighbor of mine.

My neighbors have been good neighbors to me so sorry to see them have to move! My friend has ALWAYS had two or three jobs and this is the first time she scaled back to one night job. She just can't make it due to this incarceration of her guy. They have to move. I lose my gardening buddies who I shared the community garden plot with!

January 5, 2017

Your Honor,

I am writing to let you know of my experience with my neighbor and friend XXXXXXXXXXXXxx, (“XXXX”) and to provide a character reference.

As a bit of background I think it helpful to know that I bought my home at __________and my next-door neighbor then has an until today is XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX and her children.

When _______ brought _________ into her life and welcomed him into her home three years ago, there was a very distinct sense of calm and happiness in _____________and subsequently her children and whole household. Simply by having two parents home allowed the opportunity for the children to then be allowed to play outside with greater frequency because there was ability to supervise them. ____________himself is very social and friendly and he frankly made it a point of getting to know his neighbors and subsequently together ___________ and he became more social with their neighbors in our community. ___________ did bring a new dynamic and over time took on the role of teaching and training children of the household as his own alongside ______.

After some time, however the calm of the home was disrupted as __________at some point started to drink on occasion. He would come home drunk and loud and there would be some disruption for a few moments as he got in the home and settled in.

When __________ and _______________ had their daughter I can attest that the impact of his daughter only codified ________’s resolve to be the best man he could be as he hoped to be both a strong provider for his family as a partner to _____________and Father to their children. It is at this juncture where his one clearly negative habit which was holding him back, that of drinking on occasion, is a behavior that he strives to eradicate.

I have never known ____________ to not either be working or doing all he can do to find his next job.
I can attest unequivocally to his habits that what __________ does is very predictable and routine. He gets up to go to work each morning Monday through Friday and returns home to his family after his day of work. I know this for a fact as from May 2016 until one week before his incarceration in October of 2016 I drove _______ to work each morning, leaving at 5:30 AM.

The last week of October __________ informed me he did not need a ride anymore as his boss wanted him to be in the yard even earlier to train him to be a team lead. His boss had decided to pick __________ up on his way to work and intended to promote him due to his consistent good work performance. While it was routine and predicable _________ would get up every day and go to work responsibly, it has also been very predicable that he will try to not drink, succeed for a number of weeks and then on a Friday night, have a moment of weakness where he thinks he can have just one beer. I have heard ____________ say “I am just going to have one beer” which is the only untruth I have ever heard him utter. Albeit an untruth, it was honest in intent and belief as ___________ was simply deceiving himself in those moments. He however grew in his self-awareness and desire to change and a shift noticed is that over the past year he self-proclaimed “I am an alcoholic. How can I get better? How can I do better?” on a couple of occasions. That was something I had not heard from __________ prior.

One week before his incarceration __________ had indicated he did want to find an AA meeting and seek companionship and counsel and encouragement from other men. I had that last conversation I had with him as driving him to work and just before dropping him off at _______, where he worked as a construction worker, that last week of October.

An aspect of his character that I think should also not be discounted but which I admire is that integrity is very important to ____________. He is honest, perhaps to a fault, as he lacks the emotional control to not say what he truly thinks and is quick to acknowledge and admit when he does wrong.

So, there may not be that threshold met in this moment of ____________ being considered enough of a risk of harm to self or others to JUSTIFY commitment for purpose of mental health and alcoholism treatment. He also in fact might just have an allergy to alcohol as it appears that even after a half of a beer the shift in his demeanor and mood occurs.

This however is what I think would make the most sense in the situation if feasible:

I think if the court can provide mental health and alcoholism treatment service for the good of our community that is an investment we would all benefit from. _______________ is a valued, contributing member of society when he is well and working. That would be in my mind a good use of taxpayer money for which I expect a return on the investment in ___________. I believe he is worth it.

However, if we as a society are going to pay for incarceration of this man with a mental illness (which I am aware his mother informed this court of as she also spoke with me and there are clear signs of mental illness), who lost his decorum when intoxicated, without treatment of his conditions but only punitively, I honestly think that is not a sensible use of money or resources. To lock up a man rather than allow him the opportunity to work to provide for his family for the infractions seems to me to be a punishment that does not fit the crimes alleged in this case. My understanding is that __________’s supervisor made an offer to assist _____with both medical intervention and offering a place to live. I can’t see how creating a bond as a requirement for release would be helpful for a poor family. I don’t see how keeping this man in jail is helpful for his family or the community at all, in particular after an offer was put on the table to provide treatment for him.

______________ is not welcome back in the family home until he achieves sobriety, but at this time _____________ , due to the circumstances of ______________’s incarceration, can no longer afford to maintain the family home in Purcellville, regardless. She is in process of planning a move out of state where she has family to help with her children, as she can no longer afford to live here in Loudoun County nor has the required support of child care with _____________ out of the home as he cared for their 2-year-old daughter while ____________ worked on night shifts. Keep in mind until ________ had steady employment for the past six months with the employer’s promise to promote and increase his income, __________ has always worked multiple jobs in order to meet her family’s expenses. This is the first year I have known _____ to cut her hours to only working one full time job as economically she has the support of _________. That impact of her losing her house is the most devastating result of ____________ bad choices. Perhaps he has received punishment enough and it not helpful to impose further consequences which punish his family for it should not be a crime for them to have loved him.

I am aware this is a bond hearing, and can’t see any benefit in maintaining incarceration of ____________ from what I know of him. Even if for some reason he lost his most recent job, I have no doubt this is a hardworking man who will once again attack his own challenges in life, continue to strive to improve himself and very soon be working again, contributing to the care of his daughter.


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