I’ve been looking forward to my “day in court” with Bashinka Thompson, my implant thief. As one who knows as much about court as anyone who has seen Law and Order it was an education. I still don’t get the process but it was interesting. And my hat is off for the Commonwealth’s Attorney. Clearly her case load is tremendous, she had no one to assist her and while she’s trying to get ready for this hearing every defendant’s attorney was trying to get a plea deal done prior to the start of the session. So they talk, then the attorneys go out of the court room to talk to their clients and back and forth it goes. To quote Detective Bayliss, the officer in charge of our case, “it’s glacial.”
So sitting there waiting for court to start I was feeling somewhat embarrassed because I had somehow let this happen. Although I knew, via public record, that there were about 15 or so charges against this woman I really had no idea what they meant. Well, my embarrassment quickly resolved as I learned of her extensive criminal history. Not only did she steal her breast augmentation worth $5000.00 she had, among other things, fraudulently purchased several automobile then sold them on Craig’s List. Crazy, right? Maybe just another day in the life of a criminal.
So there I sat ready to take the stand, tell my story and get some closure in this matter….
But we’re talking about our penal system, why on earth would I think things would end today. The judge calls the first case-the deal making defense attorney states they will need a continuance. Live to fight another day I suppose. The second case actually achieved a result but clearly a deal was struck-the defendant wouldn’t be accountable for everything she had done. Finally, our case; here we go! I button my coat ready to be called to the stand and testify. The prosecuting attorney states that all but 7 of the charges are “no pro.” I don’t know what that means. Then the judge talks to Ms. Thompson. I couldn’t even see her! She had been in a small room off the courtroom with a glass window the whole time. I couldn’t even see my result in jailhouse orange!
The judge aptly reiterated to Ms. Thompson that she would not be held responsible for 7 or 8 charges. In return she would plead guilty to the remaining 7 felonies. Perhaps the others were misdemeanors? A whole bunch of paperwork passes between the judge Bashinka Thompson and the prosecutor. And that’s it, no testifying, no Law and Order trial. Confused, Detective Bayless explained: she will remain in jail (as she has since March), then on June 22 the Detective, not the States Attorney, will appear before the Grand Jury and tell them that she pled guilty, then a sentencing date will be set, then she will be sentenced.
So closure will have to wait. But I’m pretty sure the waiting for me is a whole lot easier than the waiting for Bashinka Thompson.