Public Pretenders
Otherwise known as Public Defenders
Who Pretend to Defend

The following are excerpts from documents, written by Shasta County Jail Inmates:

Darrin D.R. Owens

Owens the defendant in Case No. 01-F-5314. He was appointed defense counsel Jack Suter. On August 30, 2001, in court for Discovery, Mr. Suter spoke to him briefly. He said that Mr. Suter said to him, "you know in your heart and I do too, that your going to have to do some time on this." Owens says he was in shock, as he had just been shot with a gun! Mr. Suter exited the room in a rude way, not listening or communicating. Owens believes he is innocent.

On September 18, 2001, Owens had a Marsden Hearing, in front of Shasta County Superior Court Judge, "Judge Reggerio." He was denied new counsel. He believed that Mr. Suter's actions are unethical and fail the California Business and Practices standard for Defense Counsel.

Owens said that without reading the complete police report, he presumed that he was guilty. Suter also commented that he didn't care if he was his lawyer or not. Also Mr. Suter hasn't communicated with him during this case, except when he called his office.

Thomas Andrew Winter 

On August 9, 2000, he was brought back from High Desert State Prison, for a retrial on a Special Circumstance Murder trial. Case no. 96-7524. He went to court and due to conflict of interest James Pearce was removed because he represented him on the first trial. Then he was appointed Steven C. Kennedy, and was assigned several Attorneys from that office which still had conflict of interest as well. He went through Marsden hearings, and was again signed Catherine Pearl who is out of the same office. At the conclusion of his first trial his Attorney Howard Welch, was put into the District Attorneys office.

His Appeal Attorney Janice M. Lagerlof, of San Francisco, wrote to the Stephen Kennedy office. She stated that, "the Third District Court of Appeal reversed his conviction because the prosecution introduced a statement taken in violation of Miranda in its case in chief. . .I also want to alert you to another issue that was raised in the appeal. Mr. Winter made a Marsden motion close to the time of trial in which he informed the court that he did not believe the case had been adequately investigated or prepared by Mr. Welch. During that motion, Mr. Welch admitted that he had not conducted any investigation into this case. . ."

Derick Dixon

His attorney was Jack Suter, who asked Dixon if he would take 180 days with felony probation [VC2800 (a)]. He asked time to think about it, and 5 days later Suter was talking about 3 years prison time. He got him off his case, and a paid Attorney James Pearce, who said he could get him between 120 or 180 days, and Dixon agreed to that.

At a Court appearance James Pearce "coerced" him to wave time when they got to settlement conference. Here the only deal he could get was 2 year county time, and 3 years felony probation. Pearce told him "if we go to trial we will lose." He told Dixon at first it was a misdemeanor, and Pearce said he told the Judge that the most he had seen anyone get on evading is 180 days county time, and he said that he told the Judge its because he is black.

Daniel Newsom

Newsom was sentenced to a prison term of 25 years to life on the charges of: Possession of a controlled substance; maintaining a place for using a controlled substance; illegal possession of ammunition. Penal Code 12316 (b)(1). Any person who posses a controlled substance is guilty of a misdemeanor. I, Daniel Newsom have no prior H.S.C. 1377 (b)(1) convictions, which clearly constitutes my charge as a misdemeanor not a felony. The charges constitute misdemeanors, however Newsom was sentenced under the Three Strikes Law by Judge Jahr. His Attorney John C. Lyman did not argue any of these facts. Newsom said that the judicial system in Shasta County, that the Lawyers continue to misrepresent their clients for the benefit of the prosecution.

Lee Clarke 

Issues of "entrapment" and "exculpatory evidence," Clarke was promised that an officer would come alone for an interview. When other cops arrived this caused shocking trauma, and he demanded that cops leave, as "Defense of Habitation" as withing Blacks Law Dictionary definition. Basically the cops did not keep their word. Attorney Russell Swartz appointed by Court. The subject case 1998 case and violation of probation, also failure to appear is attributable to "bed opening" for programs at the U.S. Veterans Hospital, Roseberg, Oregon. This was Federal Jurisdiction only, and authorities and agencies must yield.

Clark alleged ineffective assistance of counsel and/or conflicts of interests for the lawyer/client relationship. Failure of presenting impeaching evidence of Sheriff Deputy call back to Defendant and admission of phone conversation agreement as to promising a "no-trouble" visit, which included his promise to come to residence for interview and report alone and by himself. Failed in exploration of the "something missing that would cause L.C. & Defendant to 'go off' at second cops arrival," this and the courts interference with defendants defense right. The matter snowballed by deputies "rush to judgment," provocation, unreasonableness and abusiveness and assaults on Lee Clarke, use of excessive force and wrongful arrest and false imprisonment.

Attorney Swartz failed to visit except in holding cell before court, and problem was caused by County's financial arrangement problem, where Swartz responded that, "I don't work for sixty dollars an hour like many PDs" This problem interfered with defense of defendant. Swartz was to show up and record a psychological evaluation and he failed to do so, and then hung up when called by phone.

[This was a shorten excerpt of a long document.]

Jerry McCandless

Mr. McCandless stated that he was not guilty of doing anything wrong, but because of past arrest history his Attorney [Jack Suter] told him to wave the Pre-lim that they had enough evidence to bind him over to Superior Court.

When McCandless received the police report he saw that they didn't have any evidence at all against him. He asked Suter to help him by proving his innocence. He believes that because of his past arrest history, the bias with the District Attorney and his Attorney all working together. All of his Attorneys have been Public Defenders and in the District Attorneys pocket.

Phillip Detrant

Represented by Elliot Burick, from Stephen Kennedy's Office. Detrant said that Burick has only done what D.A. has asked of him. No defense just told him that he was looking at 55 years to life.

Varian A. Frigo

Attorney Richard Farrell, who asked a question of his witness that when answered allowed the D.A. to present his priors to the jury. He also didn't seek out witnesses in his behalf that would of helped him at trial.

Douglas Alvin Ward

Ward was forced to waive time because he didn't have counsel to represent him. On 4-16-02 he was appointed John Webster, which was 13 days after his Preliminary Hearing. At a Settlement Conference he was offered a 25 years to life sentence. At that time the DA informed his lawyer she had some visiting tapes that his lawyer wasn't even aware of. Discovery evidence is supposed to be handed over to the defense counsel, he states that again he was forced to waive time.

At the next hearing he was offered 9 years 4 month deal. At court appearance he found out that his lawyer had represented one of the star witnesses in his case. At this time he requested that this lawyer be conflicted out, the request was denied. He requested a moment to explain to the Judge how he felt, and this was also denied. The Judge told him to either accept the offer or go on with the trial. He was also told by lawyer that if he lost at trial, he would get 25 to life. He accepted the plea because he had no confidence in the lawyer to represent him at trial.

Michael Brummett

Mr. Brummett went through a series of Attorneys. First was Jeffrey Gorder who asked him to wave time, when he refused Gorder was upset and came back and said he was conflicting out, which gave the DA the time he wanted. There were no grounds for a conflict.

The second Attorney was Frank O'Conner who filed for a psychological evaluation, which stopped him from questioning a witness about his dishonesty. O'Conner refused to give him the transcripts, which were used in the 1368 trial. He also canceled and changed court dates and waved his right to be present while he did this and he also talked to other people about his case. He requested a Marsden haring and this was refused by Judge Curle.

He third Attorney William Malloy, he also had a conflict as he was a D.A. on one of his past cases. Then Jeffrey Gorder took over the case again, as he was now working in his own office. Judge Wilson Curle set the case for trial without giving him his preliminary hearing. He then asked Gorder to ask for a dismissal because they had gone over the time period for this hearing. Gorder never requested a dismissal. Then the D.A. filed more charges against him, and Gorder said that he could not represent him because of a conflict.

Next Attorney was Richard Maxion and his fifth Attorney. When his trial started the DA tried to present evidence without any foundation, but Judge Gallgher allowed the evidence in. He had no problems with the law since 1990, and a misdemeanor in 1988. The last day of trial Gallgher went out of town and had a Commissioner sit in who brought in 5 new jury instructions.

Brummett states that since the beginning of his case the Judges and Attorneys have been violating his rights. Both the Judges and Attorneys have been assisting the District Attorney's office by hiding evidence, evidence that would prove him not guilty. He requested a 1181 motion, which was refused by Judge Gallgher, who stated, if there are any mistakes the Appeal Court will pick them up.

June 29, 2001

Kevin Dill

Dill states that the District Attorney and Public Defenders are taking advantage of those who don't know the law. His Attorney was Steven Carlton, who talked him into a plea of guilty when he was in a manic depressive state. He also misinterpreted the law to him, that he was guilty of stalking, when he was only trying to retrieve personal belongings. He got a three year prison term, and wants to know what happened to the one year deal.

Bobby Lewis

Lewis was arrested on May 2, 2001 for second degree robbery, and proclaims his innocense, and had character witnesses to testify on his behalf. He was appointed Public Defender David J. Osborne, who only came to see him twice during his 4 months of incarceration. He repeatedly asked him to plead guilty and take the time offered, for months I resisted. Lewis feels that he did not fight to the best of his ability to get his case separated from other defendants. Osborne told him that there is no way you can beat this, even though I had no idea this robbery was going to take place. He knew of many situations where inmates have taken their cases to trial and lose due to public defenders not performing to the best of their ability and received the max time available. He was fearful of the same outcome and took a two year prison term.

Mr. Mulvey

Mr. Mulvey was tried for murder first degree, he says he acted in self-defense, and no more than manslaughter. He was tried and convicted of second degree murder. He appealed and was granted a new trial, and was returned to Shasta County. Attorney Jim Pearce was his Attorney, and he tried to fire this Attorney, but Judge Ruggiero told him that he couldn't fire him and he was forced to keep the counsel appointed to him.

At his trial a witness was not allowed to testify on his behalf, as it would make the deceased look bad to the jury. He needed this witness as a character witness, as the man was drinking and giving alcohol to minors and they didn't want the cat out of the bag. Another witness a waitress, to prove the man he killed was violent and out of control and hot tempered.

 Judicial Terror in Shasta County

 Three Strikes Legal - Index