I am sorry that I have nothing new on this topic. I ranted much in the last post, perhaps without sufficient appreciation of the strains placed on the legal system. The lady judge, wildly and fanatically feministic though she may be, probably tried her best given the conditions.
I do still wonder whether she knew that Stetson did not destroy his evidence at all. I told him to get rid of his implements of threat, as he confessed to and counselled with me in his car on the night of that mistake. Looking back, this may have been very poor advice, as it may have strengthened his charges; and those familiar with law will spot the opportunity to claim obstruction of justice, or tampering with evidence, even on my part. This, indeed, is one reason why I gave only what co-operation seemed mandatory to the investigators of that incident — I started to worry about the collateral damage of an enraged justice system, how that it may just as shamelessly accuse me of crime just for having been there.
I was one of three of his roommates (I in the other of our two rooms), all of us surprised by the first social reports of the incident, but I think I was the only one to have had the luxury of talking it out with him afterward, in his vehicle. And if I did wrong in it, I will have to carry the regret.
Frankly disturbed by the sight of his tools, my only thought at the time was to put some distance between him and them, to start him back down the path of psychological normalisation. Throw them out, I urged. He agreed, and did so. We found some dumpster in a church parking lot (not our apartment dumpster later ransacked by somewhat rough-talking police officers a couple days later in their search of our apartment, whose immodest manners were sufficient to discourage me from a more scrupulous disclosure of those facts).
He wanted, the next day, to go to the authorities, but, while glad for his humility, I made the second error of questioning his intuition. Not fully cognizant of the potential penalty lying ahead, I suggested instead just going to the school authorities to report it there; surely this would also be done by the other parties involved, and he may as well give his voice, too. I did not know that it would go any further than that, so why go instigate what could be a difficult legal process? To this, too, he seemed to agree, and I accompanied him to the school office…
Bad advice, all of it. Good given my limited experience, maybe, but bad in the end. The judge may have viewed him more humanely, less ferally, had he been left to his own inclinations.
That’s about as far as I got with it; he was arrested some days later, as I recall. People asked our apartment residents for verbal evidence, and I gave mine sparingly, not wanting my words twisted or weighted, hoping instead to make myself available to his sympathizers, in case I could shine any favourable light on what was destined to be an unfavourable process. As I remember, my attempt at contact was rebuffed — though, again, maybe it would just have invited culpability, to interact with the defense. Before I knew it, the trial had come and gone.
But, no, Lady Judge, he did not destroy that evidence, not of his own intent, nor was there any bad intention in it.
From half a world away, it is difficult to give any news. Contributory comments are welcome. If Stetson ever reads this, Stetson, know that many people are interested in your future. My post on you was far more visited than any of my others, even discounting repeat visitors. People care, even those who seem not to care. Even the critics were, in their frequently immature way, expressing the dissonance between their own good expectations of your well-living and the negative observations that had reached them, filtered through their biases, and resulted in their scorn or bullying or pessimism. Very many are concerned about you, and your life ahead can be as bright as the next man’s, as bright as you choose. All who care for you are expecting and awaiting such a result, inevitable mistakes notwithstanding.