Letters from jail

July 24, 2008
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If there’s ample evidence you wrote threatening letters to the president of the United States and chief justice of Canada, and you happened to include a white, powdery substance that could be mistaken for anthrax, then don’t try to appeal your convictions.

One inmate in the Westville Correctional Facility, Kerry Magers, decided while he was incarcerated to send these letters using his name and the correctional facility’s address.

He was convicted based on the evidence, but he appealed. His attorney smartly moved to withdraw because he thought any appeal would be frivolous.

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals granted the attorney’s motion today in USA v. Kerry Magers, finding all of Magers’ argument for appeal would be frivolous.

Kudos to Magers’ counsel for not attempting to file an appeal. I’ve read several opinions from the 7th Circuit in which the justices take attorneys to task for filing frivolous appeals.

Magers was found to be competent to stand trial, but there’s got to be something off about his way of thinking for him to send threatening letters stating, “enclosed is anthrax, Sincerely, Die,” and then to think that he could appeal his sentence when the evidence was overwhelming that he sent the letters.

Inmates have a lot of time on their hands, and they sometimes use it to write letters. Indiana Lawyer gets a few letters from inmates. Have you ever received a letter from an inmate and what’s the strangest letter you’ve received or heard about?
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  1. Family court judges never fail to surprise me with their irrational thinking. First of all any man who abuses his wife is not fit to be a parent. A man who can't control his anger should not be allowed around his child unsupervised period. Just because he's never been convicted of abusing his child doesn't mean he won't and maybe he hasn't but a man that has such poor judgement and control is not fit to parent without oversight - only a moron would think otherwise. Secondly, why should the mother have to pay? He's the one who made the poor decisions to abuse and he should be the one to pay the price - monetarily and otherwise. Yes it's sad that the little girl may be deprived of her father, but really what kind of father is he - the one that abuses her mother the one that can't even step up and do what's necessary on his own instead the abused mother is to pay for him???? What is this Judge thinking? Another example of how this world rewards bad behavior and punishes those who do right. Way to go Judge - NOT.

  2. Right on. Legalize it. We can take billions away from the drug cartels and help reduce violence in central America and more unwanted illegal immigration all in one fell swoop. cut taxes on the savings from needless incarcerations. On and stop eroding our fourth amendment freedom or whatever's left of it.

  3. "...a switch from crop production to hog production "does not constitute a significant change."??? REALLY?!?! Any judge that cannot see a significant difference between a plant and an animal needs to find another line of work.

  4. Why do so many lawyers get away with lying in court, Jamie Yoak?

  5. Future generations will be amazed that we prosecuted people for possessing a harmless plant. The New York Times came out in favor of legalization in Saturday's edition of the newspaper.

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