Magistrate Judge Leslie A. Bowman, 15 attorneys, Zachery Weist Federal Prosecutor, 4 marshals
Observers: GVS Sams Sylvie Robertshaw and Katrina Schumacher
There were 69 migrants on the calendar today—only men. I asked the Mexican Consulate representative how many Mexicans were here today. She said only about 15 with all the rest being from Central America. This judge does not mention country of origin or place of arrest and only a few bits of information are mentioned by the lawyers during the proceedings. What seemed different today was the lower number after a four day break, the lack of any women and higher sentences than we’ve been seeing. 6 migrants were arrested 5 to 10 days after entering our desert.
Judge Bowman started with a group of 9 shackled migrants to be dismissed or continued and then addressed 10 at a time with 10 more migrants entering as she had 10 standing with their lawyers before the bench. She spoke to all the lawyers after the dismissals telling them she had all their requests and they did not need to repeat them and she would not ask them or their clients if they had any comments but they could speak up if they wished.
Dismissals are usually because the migrant speaks an indigenous language and has no criminal record (such as illegal re-entries) or a very minor one. 2 people were continued.
Edgar Omar Arce Alaniz 18-39192M (Atty Diana Castillo Reina) grew up here from the ages of 11 to 23. He had his initial hearing and was continued until January 8 at 1:45.
Jose Antonio Rodriguez Garcia 18-39205M (Atty Mark Williman) was continued until January 8.
Josue Estrada Lopez 18-39246M (Atty Peter Matiatos) is a Cora speaker from Nayarit who had been in Streamline in 2008 (the year OS started in Tucson). The prosecutor wanted him held. When it appeared that no Cora interpreters were available and that he did speak some Spanish, he was held until the end of the hearing to try Streamline in Slow Spanish. Judge Bowman then went very slowly through everything often stopping to say, ‘Do you understand?’ to which Mr. Estrada would say, ‘Yes’.
The lawyer wanted the case dismissed. When the judge asked him what he thought of his client’s understanding he said the questions were leading—that was the nature of the beast. All, including the client, were discussing percentages of understanding 50%, 60%? They finally figured 60-70% was good enough and he was sentenced to 45 days instead of the 75 originally assigned and given the ‘Don’t Come Back’ talk.
This judge is very concerned that the prisoner understand the charges, his/her options and the consequences of pleading guilty. When I think of a half hour with an attorney discussing points of a foreign legal system after days traveling rough, a night or two in the helera, a day in bus and courtroom in 5-point shackles, I wonder how much understanding I would have.
12 migrants charged only with Illegal Entry were sentenced to ‘time served’. 47 of those charged with the additional Illegal Re-entry after Removal were sentenced to 3135 days in federal prisons or about eight and a half years. Eight and a half years of loss of income to 47 families and a cost to taxpayers of $504,735—using the figure of $161 per day for incarceration.
We were not sure whether Lucia Carillo Samano 18-39222MP (Atty Myrla Garcia) was in court. There were no women but if this is a man he may have been one of the dismissed.
I think there were most likely more CFI and asylum requests but one lawyer spoke during the hearing
and I didn't include it.
Herman Hidalgo Lopez 18-39235M (Atty Darlene Chavez) from El Salvador wants to request asylum.
He had a form (M488?) that she wanted to record and send with him. He was requesting Florence to
be closer to legal help. 30 days. (December 26, 2018)
- Katrina Schumacher