message for the judge

It was left up to Stephen to break the news to James Prindle last Friday that he had been found guilty.

James had been transported back to the jail and it was apparently not worth the effort for the authorities to make arrangements so he could face his jury and hear their verdict for himself.

After James had a major meltdown at the news, he worked all weekend to memorize a statement he wished to make to the court when the verdict was read to him on Monday. James reasoned that at the very least, standing up and speaking for himself was a way to salvage a scrap of dignity from this travesty. But instead, he was treated like he was some kind of beast.

James was brought into the courtroom in leg shackles and handcuffs, and then he was seated in a chair, his wrists cuffed to the arms of the chair and his feet chained to the floor. He couldn’t stand up; the scene was reminiscent of movies in which a condemned man is strapped into an electric chair, completely immobilized.

“Will I be allowed to speak?” he asked the bailiff Ms. Stone.


“What would happen if I tried?”

“We’d have to put you down,” she said.

So there was no statement from James. He was not allowed to face his jury, and he was not allowed to address the court. Roland Freisler* would have been proud.

We have no way of knowing whether judge and former prosecutor Bobby Carter will ever hear or acknowledge it, but here is the statement James had intended to present:


Judge Carter,

The person who is speaking to you is not guilty. The true individual who committed this unspeakable act against my little sister is walking the streets free and I sit here being punished—possibly for the rest of my life—for an act I did not commit.

I understand the court has an obligation to the public, but its highest duty is for justice. How is it justice when an innocent child is convicted?

I also understand the prosecution has a job to do. But when a person is wrongfully convicted, what good is served to the community when the person who really assaulted my sister is walking the streets in freedom and I suffer with its loss?

My stepfather Jefferson got everything he wanted: me out of his life and he gets my mom all to himself. I’ve been hurt, abused, deserted, and abandoned by my family and it’s hard to accept this, and this verdict, when this is what I’ve lived since I was little.

I would never do what I am accused of doing to my sister. I loved her and I still love and miss my family. I am innocent and I pray that one day soon my innocence will be proved to everyone, most of all, to Jefferson Sanders.


Groove of the Day 

Steve Via – The Audience Is Listening



* Roland Freisler (1893-1945) was the chief judge in Nazi Germany between 1942 and 1945. Approximately 90% of all his proceedings ended with sentences of death or life imprisonment; more than 2,600 death sentences were handed down through Freisler’s court. In October 1939, Freisler introduced the concept of ‘precocious juvenile criminal’ in the “Juvenile Felons Decree”. This decree provided the legal basis for imposing the death penalty and penitentiary terms on juveniles for the first time in German legal history. The Nazi courts sentenced at least 72 German kids to death. It was all perfectly legal.

14 Responses to “message for the judge”

  1. June 26, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    So sad. 😦 Posted link to this as an update to James’ case on the homepage of the Children’s Hope and Voice website. http://www.childrenshopeandvoice.org . If James can’t say it, then we’ll lend him a larger voice.

  2. 2 Andy Rich
    June 26, 2012 at 3:16 pm

    A defendant cant even say anything in court? I remember when i was getting in trouble several times in court for driving offenses and the judge always asked me directly if i had anything i wanted to say, i always just shrugged and looked cute an innocent and never realy had much bad happen.

    The message he wanted to read out to the judge and jury i believe, and i think we all agree on this, im very judgmental about people and there isnt a single person i havnt talked to in my life where ive trusted them and ive always thought theres something dodgey about this person, something not right, and i have here too, ive had my moments but theres something realy kicking in the back of my head that tells me someone somewhere is laughing there tits off at james saying yeah fuck you, i got away with it and ur gunna get screwed for it, ive seen it happen before, but comon dude, whoever you are who did this, you need help, if this is something you like to do to lil girls or anyone, you need help to make yourself better, if you want to hurt lil girls, and your the one that did this to james lil sister you need to come forward, yeah u will be punished for your wrong doing but you will get help to make ur life much normal and you will also be saving an innocent boy, james from the hell he’s going thru being told he’s done something he damm right knows he didnt do.

    Do you realy think its right to make a child suffer for something when they have never even thought of doing it?

    I believe you James

  3. 3 Wolfgang
    June 26, 2012 at 3:35 pm

    Why in hell isn’t he allowed to speak for himself? Isn’t there a right for Self-representation in court?

    Let’s assume this case, there are only 11 jurors, he was denied to speak for himself in his defense. -What if the 12th juror would have wotted not guilty and speaking in favor for the defendant? A lot of alarming questions are rising! I hope the US media got this, but have my doubt they do.

  4. June 26, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    I am happy that this news about James with hit the media. God saw what happen to James.

  5. 7 Frank Manning
    June 26, 2012 at 5:23 pm

    A postscript to the blurb about Roland Freisler. On Feb. 3, 1945, Freisler was presiding over his court in Berlin. The air raid sirens sounded. There are different accounts of what happened next. My favorite is that Freisler refused to adjourn court, and kept on with the “trial” of two women accused of disloyalty. As he was fulminating againsrt the defendants an American bomb crashed through the ceiling of his courtroom, sqaushing him in his bench like the vile plague-carrying insect that he was. The defendants survived the bombing. Karma is a bitch! Freisler got what was coming to him, and Bobby Carter will get his. Mark my words!

  6. 8 Gloria
    June 26, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    All the media should publish James letter to the judge. I would like to see at least that. And there should be a proper investigation over that court, it really smells rotten in that court in Memphis.

    • 9 Andy Rich
      June 26, 2012 at 6:52 pm

      I think the smell is wafting over here too, it must be pretty potent over there to make it this bad here 😉

  7. 10 Jeanne
    June 26, 2012 at 10:40 pm


    At the risk of sounding silly I have to ask you if that picture is actually of James? Why on earth do they have to treat him like he is a flight risk. It is so barbaric and sickens me. I feel really bad for James. I do not understand how they convicted him. So very wrong.


  8. 12 Jeanne
    June 26, 2012 at 11:05 pm

    OMG! I am sorry. I did not know what to think. Either way, I am disgusted.

  9. 13 Stormy
    June 27, 2012 at 9:07 am

    I have to ask was there a lie detector test done on james and if so what was the outcome. if they didn’t do one they need to .. That right there would show the judge he isn’t guilty .. I personally don’t think he committed the crime.

  10. 14 Wolfgang
    June 27, 2012 at 9:10 am

    quote from the link below

    “He will be officially sentenced July 11. If he still wants to address the court, he will be able to do so during that sentencing.”


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