Hello, dear Reader.
I received a dispatch today here at my bunker.
The authorities at the Ellis county jail last month released me with instructions to contact Judge Polk in Waxahachie for a court date.
His long-suffering clerk will be glad that I will no longer be pestering her about it. It is now evident that my charges were forwarded to a different court. I’m glad they let me know!
My case has been forwarded to Ellis county’s precinct 1, in Ennis. It will be heard or overseen by Justice of the Peace Bill Woody. (ChipSeal wonders if he voted for him…)
The dispatch is notification that a pre-trial conference will be held February 25, and that all motions must be filed seven days prior to the conference. (No motion will be entertained beyond February 25th.)
They have again changed the charges leveled at me. I am now required to defend myself from the scurrilous charge of “obstructing traffic”. I am thinking of filing a motion for a pledge from the prosecution to not change the charge again!
I still do not know the name of my accuser. (Motion 1) I do not yet know what law they think I am in violation of. (Motion 2) Did the deputy actually see me obstruct traffic? I don’t think so. (Motion 3 for dash-cam footage) What exactly was said by both me and him? (Motion 4 for audio captured by the deputy.) What did my arrest file say? What did the Deputy claim in his arrest statement? (Motion 5 for my arrest report.)
I have been sternly warned that if I fail to show up for the pre-trial conference, that my driver’s license could be denied when I try to get it renewed. I guess that will be after I get one in the first place.
Let’s work through how this works, shall we? They arrest me for using a bicycle rather than an automobile to get around. Now, to compel me to submit to the judicial process, they threaten to cause me to get around on a bicycle!
Alternately, I could have a warrant for my arrest issued against me. Huh. That seems rather formal to me, seeing how they will arrest me for simply traveling on the public road!
The judicial system in this county seems particularly ill prepared to deal with bicycle issues.
Unusual Plea-bargain Proposed
I look forward to the pre-trial conference. I think that I will consider a plea bargain. If the prosecutor apologizes for violating my right to travel on the roadway in writing, I won’t insist on a public trial. Yeah, something like that.
In another forum, a commenter who claims to be a lawman, made this statement regarding this arrest; “I feel this rider attempted to be excessive in his interpretation of his individual rights to the extent that it impeaded [sic] on the rights of others.” He therefore approves of my arrest.
I either have the right to travel on the roadway or I do not. It is a right expressly granted to operators of bicycles in Sec. 551.101. What statute removes it?
What right do motorists possess that I infringed? Do drivers have the right to proceed at the speed limit? Did I prevent any driver from proceeding down the road? No, it was me who was prevented from traveling home.
Which Will Prevail? Cultural Bias or the Law?
This is the perfect expression of the windshield view of the world. No slow moving traffic allowed! Traffic flow tramples everything in it’s way- even express statutory rights.
The letter from Justice Woody’s clerk reeks of it.
The ever changing charges betray a frantic search for a statute to justify their point of view, rather than seeking to find what the law actually says- which is their sworn duty to enforce.
No, this is far more important to me than it is for them. I want a public trial. The law is clear, and I was acting lawfully.
Their windshield view is also clear to all who wish to see it. Inconveniently, it is contrary to Texas law. Nonetheless, their view may prevail. The culture of speed is pervasive in our society.
It will be a public spectacle in either event.
The stakes are high for both sides of this issue. Do they decide the case based on the law, or do they substitute their notion of what the law ought to be “had the legislators thought about it” instead? Dare they display their willingness to override the law in favor of their prejudice in a public forum?
They need not worry that I won’t show up.
I want a public trial.
Sincerely, ChipSeal AKA The Menace of Ennis