Thank you for your recent articles (“Justice delayed,” Sept. 12, Page 1A) and editorial (“Justice delayed is justice denied; our courts must be fixed,” Sept. 19, Our View) on the slow progress of cases through the criminal court system in Stanislaus County. I learned that my family is not alone.
Since June of 2011, I have attended about 60 hearings in a capital, homicide case. The defendant was arrested in March, 2009. I have witnessed a frequently changing parade of defense attorneys, so my perception of them differs from yours. They do share blame in the backed up system. Their job is to represent their clients, not to obstruct the process of justice, nor to cause deeper and continued suffering to the undeserving family members. When attorneys feign ignorance and bewilderment at what the judge has told them to do, neglect to do it and then are given months more to complete the task, they are irresponsible and do delay the process.
Continued, long-term observation of a case that has been long delayed should have been part of your reporting. Still, I appreciate your effort.
Roberta Fitzpatrick, San Jose