Three minutes to go the mother, Shelly Griffin and her attorney, Judy Abramsohn show up. Ms. Abramsohn goes up to the clerk and tells her they will need to have security available which seemed to surprise the clerk, but she goes to make a call.
Jim shows up a minute later and sits down at his table.
Jim has over a dozen supporters present in the gallery. A deputy for the court finally shows up passing through the gallery and goes into the judge's entry. A couple of minutes later the bailiff comes out and says the deputy informed her that a video camera was in the courtroom and needed to be removed. Shelton -- of course ;-) -- asks "so my First Amendment Rights don't exist in this courtroom?" The bailiff disappears.
The bailiff reappears in a couple of minutes and says the judge also says the camera cannot be present in the courtroom. Shelton again asks does that mean his First Amendment Rights don't exist in the courtroom? She says he can stay, but his camera must go. Which of course is nonsense, since he can't very well stick a $1,000+ camera out in the hallway. At any rate, Shelton makes no motion to leave or turn off his camera, so she disappears again. I figure 'great,I am going to be finding bail for Shelton on a Friday evening again.'
Her honor states the obvious, she is not a he... because we were all expecting Commissioner Casey Newcomb, a man. When I saw a Judge was present I initially had serious concerns for Jim. They will bring in a judge when they think they need a judge to represent the courts instead of a facilitator like a commissioner. But she was just helping Newcomb who apparently was busy "serving his country." She said it twice --- apparently impressed.
Judge Suzanna Pineda stated this was a simple review hearing. Noted the Jim Kaiser had paid his child support. That normally this was where the court would urge both sides to work things out during a continuance. But that Commissioner Newcomb had apparently decided he wanted Mr. Kaiser to be sent to "Accountability Court." Apparently this is a special judge who determines how much child support you must pay blah, blah, blah.
Jim Kaiser objected to paying child support on moral grounds. He had no problems raising his child and saw no reason to pay the state child support for something he was perfectly willing to do on his own.
The Judge essentially listened to Judy Abramsohn the rest of the hearing as she literally tried to get Jim Kaiser arrested -- and in my opinion -- why she wanted the deputy there. Indeed when the deputy walked in the first time, before the hearing began, Jim turned to me in the galley and said he was the one who always showed up to arrest him.
Ms. Abramsohn said that the only time Mr. Kaiser paid child support was when he was in jail. Effectively blackmail. Go to jail. Want out, have your friends scrape up enough to cover the amount and then we will let you out. Wow! Debtor's prison. There were at least two revolutions inspired by this sort of activity.
She then estimated Kaiser owed over $6,000 since being released from jail. She encouraged the judge to send him back to jail to get the money.
She reiterated that Kaiser was in contempt on a hearing he did not show up for, but the judge said there was an error that some prior judge had not updated the minute entry at the time.
The court ordered Mr. Kaiser to get counseling, but it hasn't happened --- of course he had left the state with his son at that time.
She brought up Kaiser's "Motion for an Apology" to the court, which is what I figured would hang Kaiser. But the judge said she hadn't seen it so wouldn't rule on it.
Ms. Abramsohn objected to Mr. Kaiser's "My Name is Ben" web site for exploiting his child, and asked the judge to order it being taken down. So you might want to visit it while you can because censoring is to come I suspect. There is nothing like a banned site. Perhaps a young punk should copy the site for a mirror. There is nothing like showing a court to be impotent to really frost someone in authoritay and brighten my day.
The judge noted Jim Kaiser paid $7,500 in child support ... which Abramsohn neglected to mention.
She also said any motions Abramsohn wanted to make must be presented in wirting and that Mr. Kaiser must be given time to respond. And that Mr. Kaiser should be aware that if he fails to respond the court has a strong tendency to grant the motion without an objection.
In the end the judge ruled there was no arrangement in calculation in front of her --- I assume that means no paperwork stating how much he owed or should have paid since the $7,500, so too bad. She ordered Jim to attend the next Accountability Court on Dec. 2nd at 1:30PM in the basement of the Old Courthouse.
Judge Pineta warned that Judge McNally, who presides over Accountability Court would determine the amount of arrearage in order to send out a warrant for Kaiser's arrest. That was a warning Jim.
Both Shelton and Jim made it out without getting arrested. Friday the 13th my arse.
Ben is back with his mother now. He missed his mom.