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Indybay Feature

Tightening the Screws on "Sleepcrime: Criminal: Interview with Attorney Jonathan Gettleman

Thursday, March 26, 2009
6:00 PM - 6:30 PM
Event Type:
Robert Norse
Location Details:
101.1 FM also streaming at Afterwards archived at

Gettleman is a pro bono attorney for Anna Richardson, who along with Miguel deLeon, faces an Injunction Against Sleeping for having accumulated dozens of unpaid Sleeping Ban tickets in Santa Cruz over the last year.

Santa Cruz has been under a City Council declared shelter emergency for decades and has space for less than 10% of its 1500-2000 homeless people in emergency walk-in shelter. MC 6.36.010a makes it a crime to sleep outdoors or in a vehicle after 11 PM at night.

Numerous cities, generally regarded as less liberal than Santa Cruz, have lifted their own Sleeping Bans against the homeless--including Los Angeles, San Diego, Laguna Beach, Fresno, and Richmond. Sleeping Bans are under legal challenge in Sacramento and Santa Barbara.

Nonetheless City Attorney John Barisone not only refuses to recommend changing Santa Cruz's infamous anti-homeless law, but is taking aggressive action to take action that could lead to jail for these two homeless people.

Previously each unpaid sleeping ticket resulted in a $100 fine, with a $300 surcharge. Tickets were sent to collection resulting in loss of credit and driver's license. After the City Council's new merchant-fueled anti-homeless Downtown Ordinance amendments, three unpaid citations can result in a new misdemeanor crime punishable by up to $1000 and 6 months in jail.

Under Barisone's injunction, this couple would face contempt of court charges, and continuing jail, for each "criminal" sleepcrime outside.

See Santa Cruz Sentinel story story "Santa Cruz seeks injunction against homeless couple" at .

For an interview with Anna Richardson go to (download and fast forward to the last few minutes of the audio file).

I will also be playing a street interview with Miguel de Leon and taking calls from the public at 831-427-3772.
Added to the calendar on Tue, Mar 24, 2009 4:20PM
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