RE: [MPD-5D] RE: [Eckington] Tell Judge Alprin To Protect Our Safety
Thank you Kathy for sending this. This is good news but in the scope of things brings to light the serious issues we have in the District of Columbia. To even think that a judge appointment to the bench in the nation’s capital would have to consider holding or releasing a man accused of killing and wounding two others is crazy. There should be no question, and the law should be clear that if you commit this type of crime you should well know that you WILL be held until your trial. As citizens we must place the demand on our elected officials that this particular law must be rewritten and it must be done now. Liberal judges with the view that someone can kill today and be a good citizen tomorrow must be replaced with the stringent law that simply says, you will be held pending trial. Thus taking the decision out of the hands of those that live above the law and often don’t understand fully what citizens go through and experience in situations such as this one.
This would severely cut down on witness intimidation and assist the courts in obtaining more guilty verdicts when the evidence supports such.
Until we as citizens take a strong stance and demand better oversight from our courts we will not win the war on serious crime and murder in this city.
Thank you to all citizens ...GREAT NEWS... we have just been advised that the hearing has just ended and MR LEONARD will be held until his trial....
From: Eckington@yahoogroups.com on behalf of khenderson029@...
Sent: Wed 1/7/2009 12:17 PM
To: firstname.lastname@example.org; Eckington@yahoogroups.com; email@example.com; EdgewoodCivicAssociationfirstname.lastname@example.org; 5DCAC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [Eckington] Tell Judge Alprin To Protect Our Safety
Kerstan Bernard Leonard is accused of shooting three women on December 5, 2008, while they were standing in the lobby of the apartment building where they lived. Two of the women survived and Melody Williams was killed. Kerstan Bernard Leonard is charged with murder and two counts of assault with intent to kill.
During a December 22, 2008, hearing to determine whether or not the murder suspect should be held, Judge Jeffrey Alprin decided to release Kerstan Bernard Leonard without the benefit of a Global Positioning System (GPS) ankle bracelet or any restraint except asking the suspect to adhere to a curfew.
A second hearing was held on December 24, 2008, to reexamine the case to reconsider Judge Alprin's decision. Murder suspect Kerstan Bernard Leonard did not show up for the hearing and Judge Alprin issued a directive that none of his colleagues should consider the case until he returned from vacation on January 5, 2009.
Ordering suspect Leonard to wear a GPS bracelet does not create an unreasonable burden for him and offers a modicum of safety for the immediate victim/witnessness and the public at-large. The safer recourse is holding the suspect until trial, especially since he did not bother to show up for Court. Many of us have contacted Judge Alprin and Chief Judge Satterfield to complain about the egregious indifference to our public safety. Judge Alprin will hear the case tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. in room 200 at Superior Court.
I encourage all who are interested in protecting public safety to attend the hearing tomorrow. The citizens did their job by providing information that led to Kerstan Leonard's arrest. Our police did their job by quickly charging and arresting Kerstan Leonard. The Assistant US Attorney(s) did their job by requesting that the suspect be held until trial and by requesting that Judge Alprin reexamine the case when he refused to protect public safety the first time. It's time Judge Alprin did his job. It is not unreasonable to remand murder suspects with a criminal record (which Kerstan Leonard has) to custody until trial. While our system presumes innocence until proven guilty it also provides reasonable safeguards to protect public safety while that process unfolds.
Kerstan Leonard is charged with murder and two counts of assault with intent to kill and he did not show up to Court, underscoring his status as a flight risk and he has a criminal record. Kerstan Leonard should be taken off the streets until he answers the charges in Court. Tell Judge Alprin to do his job; (202) 879-1577.
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- Good Afternoon:This is great news indeed! I offer a resounding THANK YOU to all of the citizens that contacted Judge Alprin and Judge Satterfield regarding this matter. Do not let anyone tell you that you cannot make a difference in the community by speaking up for public safety.Sincerely,Kathy Henderson
- Keith:First, Happy New Year to you! Secondly, you are absolutely right. I am forwarding this matter to Phil Mendelson et al. and Chairman Gray for the Council to consider. The Judge clearly had enough information to hold the suspect until trial when he first heard the case. Instead, the US attorney had to go back to Court and we had to launch a citizen effort to get him to understand that our public safety matters a great deal. I will keep you posted. As always, thanks for your support.Sincerely,Kathy