Few of you may know, that I went to jail in early 2005. The charges were “domestic dispute with a misdemeanor of assault I went to jail that night for about 16 hours. It was by far one of the strangest things I have ever encountered. I don’t talk about it as a respect to the other party, who really loves his privacy on such matters. Regardless, I really do try and keep a good mindset about all things. And though the jail thing was hairy, I endured it. Upon seeing a court evaluator, I asked “what is the most the court will ask me to do?” He said community service and classes on domestic violence and drug and alcohol abuse. I got the info and got in right away. I found a community art gallery and donated my time to the cause. I wrote this piece two days out of jail… but I had to wait 7 months for a hearing with a judge. In the mean time, I did everything the was going to ask me to… ONLY I DID IT BEFORE THEY ASKED.
At the end of the trial ( there were people on the jury, who had totally bought a pizza from me a Papa Murphy’s) where I was found guilty, the judge talked to me off the record, wherein I shared this piece of writing.
She was impressed with what I had done, and said I could have my record expunged after 4 years, if no other incidence.
There has been no other incidence. I have been single for 7 years. That was my last serious relationship. It ended weird and now I have a mark on my record… why? Why haven’t I had it expunged? Because I would rather put petrol in my car, and buy a six pack then pay yet another $85 dollars into the system I found myself indebted to.
How did I win? Well I guess I cut a lot of drama out of my life after all of that, and yet, at moments knowing what I know; I find myself still fearing the law. Fuck me.
I come before you a humble and humiliated part of society
my brain screams
“girls like me, don’t belong in jail”
but I compromised what allows me to be free
My reality, assault in the fourth degree
Luckily not another tragedy
just a young woman
with too much to drink
a tendency to over think
and a bottle of rage packed inside
These things I over looked
came back to bite
and now I know what a night in jail is like
I can’t remember the succession in which it all happened
Only I know
I don’t want it to happen again
I don’t want a record
or a label like criminal
Since that day
I pay for my actions
Two hundred and fifty
of my cash
goes to bail I owe
Not to mention the
broken double pane window
My brain gets lost when it thinks
of these court costs
My humiliation is evident at my job
with this broken nose
and black eye
No way to disguise.
Humbled as a daughter
who had to call home from a holding cell
didn’t go over so well 2000 miles away.
I’ve been waiting to talk to Your Honor
for weeks, just trying to think what I could do
for Deschutes County to drop these charges against me.
I confess I am willing to do anything
I can to lessen the charge
counseling or deferment
I don’t know yet
I ask your Honor for help
so that I can contain the stress
that made me burst outward
It makes no sense to me,
how I could act irrationally
but then again
it was that dark part
that comes out with that depressing friend called liquor
it gets that range pumping quicker
until your mind goes black
and you are ready to attack your lover
The marks on my face
evidence of the darkness that exists inside all of us
once let loose
I am only here in Bend temporarily until March 10th
Then I send myself back to middle America
I swear it’s my word and your judgement
Your Honor, I trust what you decide, will fit the crime.
I appreciate you, for allowing me, this time with you.
I am ready to do what you ask me to.