Today me, Mr. Paul, Trae, Brook (his girlfriend), Eddie (another witness friend of Trae's), and Kim, Brook's mom had to arrive to court for Trae's 2nd degree assault charges filed against him last October. Initially everyone we know, sheriffs, security involved, Judge friends, everyone said Trae would be fine. Never been in trouble before, no record, good kid, basically model citizen, he would be fine so we opted to just use the Public Defender instead of hiring a Lawyer. With Mr. Paul not working it would have put a huge financial strain on our family.
When we arrived to court we sat near the front where Brook and her mom had already sat. There was a line of folks standing in the middle that had to check in. I had never seen Michael the bully before but I happened to look up and this 30 year old guy is standing in line looking right at me with this huge smirk on his face. I turned to Trae and asked if that was him, and he said yes. I looked again at Michael who stood in the line literally 3 feet away from us and he still was staring at me smiling. I swear I wanted to gouge out his eyes.
The first guy called was 22 years old, also clean record. He had apparently had spray painted a couple of buildings in the local community with some type of symbol or whatever. He had lost a great job because of it. He was a high school drop out who quit school his senior year. His lawyer was trying to say that without an education or degree he was lucky to have landed such a job. Then he got another somewhat decent job in which he was laid off recently from. When the Judge was done talking the officer in court walked up the guy and handcuffed him right then and there and off he was going to serve his jail time. At this point I began to freak. I started crying and found myself angry with Mr. Paul for not hiring an attorney like I had requested. My heart was racing, my hands shaking and the tears wouldn't stop falling.
Then I hear them call Trae's name. OMG he's going to jail, I just knew it. I began to panic. Trae stood in the front on the left of the courtroom next to his public defender. The State's attorney began reading the charge and statement provided by Michael. Then she turned and asked Michael who was sitting in the last row of the courtroom (where bully's always sit) if he wished to address the court. Of course he said yes, and walked to the front. He spoke how he politely asked Trae to pull his pants up and Trae was rude, disrespectful and spoke vulgarities to him for no reason. He said that he was having to get surgery on his jaw. That's when I about exploded. WHAT? How stupid do you really think this court is??
Then Trae's attorney began to say what really happened. The Judge asked Trae if he wanted to talk. I had already informed Trae he was to address the court regardless of whether he wanted too or not. He better say something. So he did, then they called up Mr. Paul. Mr. Paul talked about Trae, his involvement in baseball, his attitude and how this was out of the box for Trae. Mr. Paul really spoke highly of Trae as anyone would their child but he also mentioned that he could really call anyone that knew Trae and they would tell the court the same thing. Trae has always been for the most part a model kid.
I sat in anticipation, scared to death. My son was facing a Judge who had made it perfectly clear he was not playing around. He gave Trae a PBJ (Probation before Judgement) for 2 years. Meaning that if he doesn't have any further issues with the law in 2 years he can have this expunged from his record, a fine totalling 160.00 due today, and either 40 hours of community service (which costs 150.00) or 2 days in jail. I watched as Trae and his attorney whispered wondering what he would decide. She speaks up he will take 2 days in jail but requested it be during the weekend due to him being in school. OMG my son is going to jail????????
Then the Judge says Trae you will serve the weekend of May 8th in the Charles County Detention Services. I panicked OMG prom. Since we were in the front row, I began whispering Trae's name, he finally turned around and I mouthed the word "Prom". He whispered to his attorney and she asked the judge to do this coming weekend since that particular weekend was the prom. I thought no worries here. Then the Judge says, this isn't a hotel Trae, you socked a guy in the jaw. Oh great just the attention Michael was seeking. However the Judge did agree to this coming weekend. Friday I get to drop my son off in jail and pick him up on Sunday.
The bottom line to my last two days is that two very stressful issues that have been hovering over my family's heads since fall of 2009 are finally over. We can now turn the page to these disasters that have held my family captive for over 6 months now.