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. As one of the many consumers affected by this breach, I found my bank data had been lifted and used to buy over $200 of various merchandise in New York. I did a pretty good job of tracing the purchases to stores around a college campus just from the info on my bank statement. Hm. Mr. Hill, I would like my $200 back! It doesn't belong to the state, in my opinion. Give it back to the consumers affected. I had to freeze my credit and take out data protection, order a new debit card and wait until it arrived. I deserve something for my trouble!

  2. Don't we have bigger issues to concern ourselves with?

  3. Anyone who takes the time to study disciplinary and bar admission cases in Indiana ... much of which is, as a matter of course and by intent, off the record, would have a very difficult time drawing lines that did not take into account things which are not supposed to matter, such as affiliations, associations, associates and the like. Justice Hoosier style is a far departure than what issues in most other parts of North America. (More like Central America, in fact.) See, e.g., http://www.theindianalawyer.com/indiana-attorney-illegally-practicing-in-florida-suspended-for-18-months/PARAMS/article/42200 When while the Indiana court system end the cruel practice of killing prophets of due process and those advocating for blind justice?

  4. Wouldn't this call for an investigation of Government corruption? Chief Justice Loretta Rush, wrote that the case warranted the high court’s review because the method the Indiana Court of Appeals used to reach its decision was “a significant departure from the law.” Specifically, David wrote that the appellate panel ruled after reweighing of the evidence, which is NOT permissible at the appellate level. **But yet, they look the other way while an innocent child was taken by a loving mother who did nothing wrong"

  5. Different rules for different folks....

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