The Champion

May 2003 , Page 47 

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‘Thank you for believing me’

By Scott West

Read more A Gideon Moment columns.

Mike could not believe he had been indicted. A few months ago, he had an argument with his cousin over the property line which had escalated into a fight. It did not last long, but Mike was able to get “one good lick in” before it was over. His cousin then left, yelling and swearing, but nothing more had been said. Mike had thought the dispute was over, and the property matter settled.

Until today. Mike was being cuffed, arrested and carted off to jail. The police officer was telling him that Mike had been charged with second-degree assault — a crime which carried 5 to 10 years in prison. His cousin had testified to a grand jury, Mike would later learn, and had told them that Mike had struck him repeatedly in the head with a large rock! And they believed him. And not only the grand jury, but the police, the jailers, and apparently the judge too, because Mike could not make a bond!

Mike had been given a $10,000 property bond, but his claim to his property

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