This event has been postponed from its original start date of Oct 15. Check back for updates on the new date for this court hearing.
This Lodging Trial, for a ticket I received in the wee hours, California's PC Lodging 647(e), has been slowly moving thru' time for two years and a month, since PeaceCamp2010, toward trial.
PC2010 held a First Amendment demonstration and protest on the Courthouse steps, in support of homeless people who have to sleep outside.
In the City of Santa Cruz, the anti-sleeping, anti-camping ban 6.36.010 (still) criminalizes anyone sleeping outside in public. And this City's definition of "sleeping" includes having a blanket over one's self even if obviously awake.
STILL you get a ticket. STILL you probably have to go to court, and then try to outrun any warrant, all this for a night's *maybe* sleep in the dirt or concrete.
The City's anti-sleep law adds significantly to the dangers homeless people here face, including undue stress and criminalization (which never seems to end if one is without money).
It invokes our collective memories of sleeplessness as torture, for some of us.
True, this is just an opinion, but other knowledgeable people share this opinion, and Applied Survey Research's alternate-year suveys of homeless people themselves also confirms my viewpoint.
So anyway, in August 2010, the County's Sheriff's Deputies (and apparently others?) selected "Lodging 647(e)" as a tool to -- so it seemed -- make our demonstration go away. See Indymedia Santa Cruz and SC Sentinel, summer 2010, and my own story in Street Spirit .org for Sept 2011 to learn more about PeaceCamp2010.
There is a 'trial readiness' hearing on October 10th, also at 9 am., also in Department #2, Honorable John Gallagher's courtroom. I suspect what happens on October 10th could impact how the trial plays out; so look here (Indymedia Santa Cruz) for significant shifts in the court calendar. Otherwise: Monday, October 15th, 9 am, Dept #2 for this Lodging Trial.
Gallagher is the Judge who sentenced both Gary Johnson and and PeaceCamp2010 co-founder, and attorney, Ed Frey to jail.
Lodging is being used to push homeless people around in California, despite its historic use as a catch-all for status crimes.
Can we dislodge this unfair, double-standard abuse of power?
My pro-bono attorney Jonathan Gallagher has already taken the "lodging law" through a kind of legal appeal, a Writ of Habeus Corpus. He and his partner, Eric Nelson, will be presenting my case after Jury Selection, starting Monday October 15 at 9 am.
If you can help this way, my lawyers need funding for their hard costs such as copying expenses.
I will be spending the first ten minutes of "lunch" on Monday and Tuesday in quiet meditation, perhaps in the Atrium. Join me in silence if you like, or consider being a friendly witness of this trial. All caring support profoundly appreciated.
Besides my attorneys, I am grateful already to Occupy Santa Cruz, to Homeless Persons Legal Support, to Housing NOW! in Santa Cruz, and to my personal care-givers for helping keep me focused and upright, so far.
Anyone who has information about the 'mia' lodging tickets received by Occupy campers last year -- and perhaps subsequently transfigured into tresspass charges? -- also just outside the Courthouse but on Water St side, I would love to be in touch with you soon?
Linda Ellen Lemaster homes4everyone [at] yahoo.com