Tales from the Brown Desk

Tales from the Brown Desk - Episode 14 - Bond Review Hearings, Review of Counsel Hearings, & Florida Man

July 23, 2020 Rigney Law LLC Season 1 Episode 14
Tales from the Brown Desk
Tales from the Brown Desk - Episode 14 - Bond Review Hearings, Review of Counsel Hearings, & Florida Man
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Tales from the Brown Desk
Tales from the Brown Desk - Episode 14 - Bond Review Hearings, Review of Counsel Hearings, & Florida Man
Jul 23, 2020 Season 1 Episode 14
Rigney Law LLC

Weekly Criminal Law Podcast, Tales from the Brown Desk, brought to you by Rigney Law LLC. Tales from the Brown Desk is a free flowing conversation involving two foul-mouthed attorneys. It may include graphic descriptions of sexual activity, violence, and traffic law. It may not be suitable for children. Listener discretion advised. 

Episode 14 continues a series - A Walk Through the Criminal Justice System in Indiana. In this episode, Indianapolis criminal defense attorneys Jacob Rigney and Kassi Rigney will walk us laypeople through Bond Review Hearings, and the Review of Counsel or Status of Counsel Hearings. We also talk about what Florida Man and Florida Woman have been up to.

Show Notes Transcript

Weekly Criminal Law Podcast, Tales from the Brown Desk, brought to you by Rigney Law LLC. Tales from the Brown Desk is a free flowing conversation involving two foul-mouthed attorneys. It may include graphic descriptions of sexual activity, violence, and traffic law. It may not be suitable for children. Listener discretion advised. 

Episode 14 continues a series - A Walk Through the Criminal Justice System in Indiana. In this episode, Indianapolis criminal defense attorneys Jacob Rigney and Kassi Rigney will walk us laypeople through Bond Review Hearings, and the Review of Counsel or Status of Counsel Hearings. We also talk about what Florida Man and Florida Woman have been up to.

Jacob Rigney – It’s Friday afternoon. We’ve locked the door so our bodies can get all nice and ripe after we die at our desks due to non mask-wearing complications, and also because it’s time for another edition of our weekly podcast Tales from the Brown Desk. I’m Jake Rigney of Rigney law LLC. With me as usual is my law partner, wife, and the donor of my court mask last week, Kassi Rigney. Our host is Teri Ulm. Friendly reminder, Tales from the Brown Desk is a free-flowing conversation involving two foul-mouthed attorneys. It may include graphic descriptions of sexual activity, violence, and Qanon’s idiotic ramblings. It may not be suitable for children, our landlords, your landlords, our clients, and basically everyone else. Listener discretion is advised. Here’s Teri.

Teri Ulm – Hello everyone! Hi Jake. How are you today?

Jacob Rigney – Hi Teri. I am in a terrible mood. So…

Teri Ulm – Terrible?

Jacob Rigney – I think other people would call that normal.

Teri Ulm – Okay. Hi Kassi. How are you today?

Kassi Rigney – Hi. I’m fine. Thank you. How are you?

Teri Ulm – I’m good. Thank you. So today we are going to continue our series: A Walk Through the Criminal Justice system in Indiana. Last week we talked about the discovery phase of a criminal case, and this week we’re going to continue our walk into the swamp and take the next step. It is a swamp.

Jacob Rigney – Okay.

Kassi Rigney – It’s definitely not the stroll. I was thinking about that when you said the title of it. Like this is not a nice stroll. I usually tell people if you can avoid lawyers getting involved, you should.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. It’s not Saturday in the park. That’s true.

Teri Ulm – Yeah. I think last week we were informed that we were in poop town.

Jacob Rigney – That sounds like something I’d say.

Teri Ulm – Yeah. So after the discovery phase or after the discovery phase is initiated, what happens next?

Jacob Rigney – Typically you would have any number of what are called pretrial hearings, and they can cover different subjects or involve different matters. It just depends on the specifics of your case. And those kind of happen during the discovery process. So, as things move along, these sorts of things aren’t happening like one after the other. Some of them can happen in the same hearing, and it’s all happening at the same time the discovery process is ongoing. If that makes any sense.

Bond Review Hearings

Teri Ulm – It does. Now would a bond review hearing happen during the discovery phase?

Jacob Rigney – Yes. Very early on, in a case. If a defendant is in custody and they can’t make the bond that is already set for them, a defense attorney will often ask for a bond review. This way they can argue to the judge that the person’s bond ought to be lowered, so that they can get out. And the state often argues that the bond should be increased, so that they can stay in.

Do the words bond and bail mean the same thing?

Teri Ulm – Do the words bond and bail mean the same thing?

Kassi Rigney – In the state of Indiana, for all intents and purposes, yes. I’ve seen them used interchangeably. Jake might have a little bit of history on bail, but…

Jacob Rigney – No. I have absolutely no history on it at all.

Kassi Rigney – Something about property instead of cash or… They’re the same thing.

Jacob Rigney – This is one of those honest lawyer moments where we’re just going to admit: “I’m sure there’s a reason those two different words existing, but I have no idea what it is. They don’t mean anything different now. I think that, once upon a time, you could put your property up as collateral, as evidence that you were going to come to court. This was, I think, before mortgages were common. So as long as the person showed up for court every time they got to keep their farm or whatever it was they were promising. But that’s not common practice anymore. It may still be possible in some counties. I’ve never seen it done. It’s always money these days, usually to a bondsman.

Kassi Rigney – The important thing is that it’s not relevant. It doesn’t make any difference which word you use.

Teri Ulm – Bond or bail. Same thing pretty much.

Kassi Rigney – Yeah.

Teri Ulm – I think we talked about this in one of our earlier episodes as far as bond being set and it was my understanding that there’s a schedule. Or certain crimes have certain bonds that go with them. If there is an amount that is associated with a crime, is it okay to ask for it to be reduced?

Jacob Rigney – It is okay. The judge can always… But let’s start from the beginning. Every county is a little different and every county has a somewhat different bond schedule, as far as I’m aware, Marion County’s, for example, looks at a whole bunch of different things including whether the person’s failed to appear before and some other things like that. There are other counties where they simply just set it based on the level you’re charged with and everyone gets the same bond at first. But there are always reasons why you could argue that it ought to be lowered in your client’s case. If the bond is unmakeable, a lot of times you’re gonna ask that they go below their normal schedule, and point out some specific aspect of your situation or your client’s situation that is different and ought to give the judge more comfort that your client will show up when directed to do so, and won’t commit any more crimes while they’re out on bond. Those are the two things the judge is supposed to be worried about.

Why is bond set so high?

Teri Ulm – If somebody is incarcerated and they’re waiting to be let out on bail or bond, and they haven’t, couldn’t we just conclude that they can’t afford it? Why do you have to go and ask the judge to lower it? Because it is my understanding there’s millions of people across the country that are in jail, waiting trial, and aren’t out simply because they can’t afford their bond.

Kassi Rigney – Well then does everybody just wait it out and no one pays bond? They’re trying to keep you on the hook for something. In Marion County, I know they’ll consider. But the fact you can’t pay bond if you’re charged with a high felony, armed robbery something like that, just because you can’t pay bond, doesn’t mean they’re gonna lower it. You have a right to bond. You don’t have a right to a bond you can pay.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. The court is required to set a bond in a way that’s going to ensure that the person comes back to court. That’s the overarching concern. For example, armed robbery carries a penalty between 3 and 16 years in prison. How much would you pay for three years of freedom? Probably quite a bit. Just if you get a job, it’s worth thousands upon thousands of dollars to you. So the court justifiably believes they have to set a bond that’s at least somewhere in the five to ten thousand dollar range, so you don’t just run away and go live your life. You know what I mean? Because you’re looking at prison time if you’re convicted of that thing. It’s the same with murder. Murder carries a mandatory minimum of forty five years in prison, and it’s unlikely that no matter what bond you set, if somebody makes it, they’re probably not going to come back and face that willingly. So it makes sense that they have to set high bonds or in the case of murder that they hold  a person without bond. Because otherwise you just have everybody running away. The system can’t work that way.

How much of bond do you have to pay?

Teri Ulm – When a bond is set, does the incarcerated person have to pay the entire amount of the bond or do they only pay like ten percent or a portion of it?

Kassi Rigney – It depends on the type of bond. In Indiana, a lot of counties are letting you do cash bonds that you pay to the clerk. That’s a set amount. Pay to the clerk. Stick the case out. They’ll take fees out, but at the end they’ll return the money. When you do what’s called a surety bond, that’s the one we were talking about generally you pay 10 percent cash. You do that through a bondsman,. When you pay a bondsman, that money is gone. The best thing you get out of paying a bondsman is he keeps your 10% and doesn’t pursue you for the other 90%.

Surety Bonds and Bail Bondsman

Teri Ulm – So, the bail bondsman would pay the hundred percent and charge you 10 percent?

Jacob Rigney – Right, and he keeps your 10% and then gets, if you show up for all your hearings, he gets all his money back from the court. So in other words, he bets one hundred percent of whatever the bond is. So it’s kind of a gamble. You would look at it the same way you would look at gambling. He is going to bet that you’re gonna show up for all your court hearings, Chad. So if your bond is a thousand dollars, he’ll take a hundred from you, he’ll give the court a thousand, and if you show up for all your hearings, he gets his thousand back. Plus he keeps your hundred and he turns a tiny little 10% profit on his investment.

Teri Ulm – Why use a bail bondsman instead of just paying the hundred? Like if Chad had the hundred, why pay the hundred for him to keep 10%?

Kassi Rigney – Well it’s my understanding they don’t actually pay the hundred they like give collateral. They may pay ten percent and then sign up their house. They’re giving a hundred thousand. I’m not under the impression that they have ten thousand dollars in cash. That they’re handing over to the bondsman who then just yet keeps it. You’re right. That would make sense.

Jacob Rigney – Right. It’s cheaper, is why people use a bondsman. If your bond is ten thousand surety, the bondsman only makes you pay a thousand dollars so you can get out for a thousand instead of ten thousand. He pays the ten thousand, and he gets it back if you show up.

Kassi Rigney – I think that’s kind of where you end up with Dog the Bounty Hunter, that kind of thing. Those people are… When you see those scenarios, that’s the situation they’re talking about.  They’re not gonna get their money if that person doesn’t show up for court. So that’s when people are kicking in doors and dragging people into court.

Jacob Rigney – Right. That’s exactly what’s happening. The Chapmans run a bail bond company and they post a bond. And if you don’t show up, they go looking for you, because if they produce you, they still get their money back. So every person that you’re watching him chase down is a dollar amount in his head that he needs to get back from the county court system. Which is why they’re so motivated to do it.

Who attends a bond review hearing?

Teri Ulm – Now who would typically attend a bond review hearing?

Kassi Rigney – Well court is public. Anybody can attend any court that’s in session. But if you mean who would testify or be needed for a hearing…

Teri Ulm – Yeah.

Kassi Rigney – It depends on the situation. Oftentimes it’s just your client, but sometimes it might be a family member, or an employer, or something like that. Again, it’s a case-by-case analysis. What is the concern with your particular client’s case? Who does the court want to hear from?

How long does a bond review hearing last?

Teri Ulm – How long do these hearings usually take?

Jacob Rigney – They don’t usually take very long. Usually the whole thing lasts 10 or 15 minutes, in terms of actual hearing time. A lot of times you sit and wait for the hearing longer than it takes to have it. Although I have seen some longer ones where there is a sort of longer drawn-out presentation of evidence, but for the most part they’re relatively quick hearings.

Kassi Rigney – Well, that’s something that we haven’t talked about much. Indiana has like a victims Bill of Rights, and if you were the victim of a crime you, would have the right to be notified of change in bond and have the court we hear you on that. So in that situation it’s incumbent on the state to inform that person if that person has an opinion. Either present them to the judge or relay their opinion to the court.

When do bond review hearings happen?

Teri Ulm – When do bond review hearings happen? Can they happen anytime between when you’re arrested and put into jail up to your sentencing?

Jacob Rigney – They can happen anytime although it is much more common for them to occur at the beginning of a case than it is at the middle or the end. Typically, the defendant and the defense counsel is going to be motivated to try to get the defendant out of jail while the case is pending. The reason being that the state of Indiana has a lot more leverage in terms of plea negotiations if the defendant is in custody. This is because most defendants, and I’m not speaking about any particular client of mine at this point, but most defendants in my experience will take almost any plea that gets them out of jail if they’re in jail. If they’re in and you offer them home detention, and maybe I have a self defense claim. Maybe the witness’s won’t show up. Maybe this defense. That all goes out the window, usually, when your defendant’s in custody. When he’s in custody, if they offer him home detention, he’s usually just going to say” Okay. Sign me up”. They offer him probation, he’s going to say: “Okay. Sign me up”, and so your ability to sort of fight that question of whether a person is or isn’t guilty, is a lot harder when the person is in custody. Because suddenly the state has negotiating power that they didn’t have before, and they know that. Most prosecutors likely wouldn’t admit it, but that is one of the reasons why they seek to keep people in custody so much. Because it’s a lot easier to negotiate their cases without a trial, if they can keep the person in custody while the case is pending.

Teri Ulm – That makes sense. Does the prosecutor have a say in the amount of the bond that’s set or is that completely up to the judge?

Kassi Rigney – The judge makes the final decision The prosecutor gets to weigh in. The way you describe it, you’re going to go against the state. And the judge is the referee between the two. There are very few things that either one of the parties can decide in and of themselves, and all by themselves. So. they get to weigh in. It’s like that at almost any hearing whether it’s a modification, both parties will be heard on the issue.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. It’s almost like an ice skating competition. Both sides put on their show, and then the judge rates them and sets a bond according to whoever skated best. I mean it’s not exactly like that, because it’s probably not as arbitrary as ice skating judges can be, but it in a lot of ways it’s similar. Or diving. Diving judges, that sort of thing. Because there’s a degree of difficulty, and then how well you pulled it off, and so in bond review hearings there’s the defendants criminal history, and how much property he owns, and where it is, and how big of a flight risk he is, and whether he’s shown up before. If he’s been arrested before. So there all these different factors at play, and then the judge just kind of says: “Okay. Here’s what your bond is now”.

Can a bond review hearing backfire and bond be increased?

Teri Ulm – Assuming that these bond review hearings, the whole purpose of them is to reduce the amount of bond, does that ever backfire.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. That’s not the right assumption.

Kassi Rigney – Yeah. No. It’s called a bond review. We will have people wanting a bond reduction. Slow down. This is a review. The court has given an audience to the parties, and they are going to “review” your bond. So you’ll go over what is it set now? We’ll talk about the factors. We’ll talk about  what’s important, but no. It can absolutely go up. When I was a prosecutor I had seen it go up, because people didn’t want to listen to their attorney, and they got there, and then it was worse.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. But what’s weird is that even when that happens, it functionally doesn’t really matter to the defendant. It’s kind of a no-lose proposition for the defendant. Which is why, almost universally, they all want a bond review, because if they can’t pay the bond they currently have, it doesn’t matter if it goes up. They’re going to sit in jail either way. And it might go down. So, that’s why you have it on a lot of cases. And literally every case where the defendant is in custody.

Can a bond be removed completely?

Teri Ulm – Can the bond ever be erased completely or is it like a guarantee that you would have a bond?

Kassi Rigney – No. That’s what they call OR or own recognizance. That’s when you are released without posting property. It’s just based on your promise to follow the rules and come back. And that’s common on misdemeanors, low-level offenses.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. In some jurisdictions they call it ROR, Released on your Own Recognizance. It’s just cool. It kind rolls off your tongue. I’m ROR.

Kassi Rigney – That’s more technically correct, because you never say own recognizance. If I went around just going “own recognizance”. People would be like, what are you talking about? You need the “released”.

Jacob Rigney – Right. I actually wish we would go to that, but…

Kassi Rigney – Let’s be trendsetters.

Teri Ulm – You can do it.

Jacob Rigney – Nobody will follow anything I say or do. They would be like, Jake Rigney does that? No. We’re never doing to that. No.

Kassi Rigney – That doesn’t sound right.

Can you get your bond money back?

Teri Ulm – It doesn’t. If you’re found innocent, can you get all that money back?

Kassi Rigney – How long are you going to have to work here before you don’t say things like “found innocent”.

Teri Ulm – If you are not proven guilty?

Kassi Rigney – Correct. You would get your bond money back.

Jacob Rigney – Well, not if you paid a surety bond though. If you pay money the bondsman, it’s gone no matter what happens. Even if you’re found not guilty. All you get, is you get to get out before your trial happens. Your money is still gone.

Kassi Rigney – Yeah. Back to the best-case scenario with the bondsman is he doesn’t take the other 90%. So I guess, yeah. With that clarification.

How is bond determined? Cash bonds and surety bonds.

Teri Ulm – What kind of things are taken into consideration when setting the type of bond; whether it be surety bond or a normal bond.

Jacob Rigney – Or what we call a cash bond which is where you just pay the whole thing to the clerk. It’s rare that you get a judge that sort of explains themselves about why they set one bond or another. But I have heard it done once or twice. And the good explanation I got once from a judge was that you set a cash bond if you think they’re going to come back, and so you just want to give them the extra push to come back. But you set a surety bond, if you’re not sure, and you want to make sure that a bondsman will go out looking for him if he doesn’t show up. Does that make sense?

Teri Ulm – It does.

Jacob Rigney – If you pay a cash bond to the clerk, and then you don’t show up, yeah you lose your money, but nobody goes looking for you. The judge will issue warrant for your arrest, but the cops aren’t gonna go out looking for you. But on a surety bond, the bondsman is going to lose that other 90 percent if he doesn’t find you. So, they are heavily financially motivated to chase you down, and because of that, that gives the courts more security when they set those kinds of bonds. That’s the only good explanation I think I’ve ever heard about it. But we’re also not encouraged to question the judge’s ruling from the bench either. Typically, we take what we get and we move on, because you don’t make any friends asking questions.

What is a review of counsel hearing?

Teri Ulm – Now there is something that I have come across, and I don’t know if it’s a title of the hearing but it’s review of counsel. Is this a hearing title?

Kassi Rigney – Yeah. Review of counsel, status of counsel, it’s just a term. That’s the deadline for the accused to hire an attorney. So, basically the person has asserted that they wish to hire an attorney, and they need time to do that. So the court sets one of these hearings. It just means you’re supposed to have an attorney here on this day. Generally we just file an appearance. But otherwise you’re supposed to come back and then talk to the judge about why you don’t have an attorney.

Jacob Rigney – Right. It’s the hearing where you’re going to have to explain yourself to the judge if you haven’t hired someone.

Teri Ulm – Would this be the time to say that you can’t afford an attorney or is that earlier on in the case, like at your initial hearing?

Jacob Rigney – That depends quite a bit on what jurisdiction you’re in, but typically every court is going to addresses counsel at the initial hearing. But if you’re having a review of counsel hearing, that means the court has decided that you don’t qualify for the public defender’s agency at that point. Or for a public defender. Not every County has an agency. So, if you get to a review of counsel and you genuinely still can’t afford an attorney, yeah. You bring it up again, or for the first time if you hadn’t brought it up before.

What do judges consider prior to appointing a public defender?

Teri Ulm – What types of things does the judge consider before appointing a public defender?

Kassi Rigney – Generally a person’s ability to pay, but again this is the mind-reading part. We’re using experience to just guess at what we think led them to make that decision.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. What the judge has to decide is whether or not the person qualifies as indigent. That’s the word that typically is thrown around. Indigent is just a $4 word for poor, and a lot of times they’ll consider your income and your assets. So they’ll want to know if you own anything of a value that you might be able to sell to hire an attorney. And how many people you support, and sort of what your general living situation is. Whether or not other people support you as well, so that they can figure out how much of the money you make is really spent on the types of things that we don’t really want to punish people for for having.

Can you ask the court for a new public defender?

Teri Ulm – So, the review of counsel hearing or the status of counsel hearing, those are set by the court. Could someone that has a public defender ask for a review a counsel hearing because they don’t like their public defender?

Kassi Rigney – No. First, the court sets its calendar. That’s it. All we have the ability to do is ask the court to schedule something for a reason. So the court always sets its own calendar. Then the court can either assign you a public defender or does not assign you public defender. He will not order the public defender’s agency to give you a different public defender. He won’t micromanage that. You can get an appointed attorney as passed out to you by the county public defender’s agency, or that system. Or you can hire your own attorney or go pro se.

What does pro se mean?

Teri Ulm – Could you explain what pro se means to our listeners?

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. Pro se means you’re representing yourself.

Teri Ulm – Is that a good idea?

Jacob Rigney – No. Not usually. There are certainly people in the history of the United States who have successfully represented themselves, but the thing about representing yourself, especially if you don’t have any legal training or legal education, is that you will not be aware of the issues that may be arising in your case. Lawyers spend typically three years in law school plus they take a big fancy along two day exam to prove that they are good, mainly at one skill, and the skill is called issue spotting. They can read a document and determine what legal issues exist in Indiana based on what the document says. If you don’t have that training, you will miss issues. You will fundamentally misunderstand issues. And you will misunderstand how Court decisions apply. Unfortunately, sometimes I deal with folks who have either done their own research or have tried to represent themselves, and a lot of times they’ll point me to cases that they think, according to this case, right here, I should be out. Or they can’t go forward. And I’ll find that it’s a Missouri trial court order, or a federal appeals court opinion from a different circuit than Indiana. Those do not have any precedent in Indiana courts. But because they don’t understand the system, the two-tiered federal plus state system that we have, and where those the decisions on those issues fall in that system, they don’t understand how to effectively represent themselves. It’s very complicated. If it was easy, they wouldn’t have made me go to school for three years to learn how to do it. So generally, it is a terrible idea to represent yourself. But in Faretta v. California, the United States Supreme Court said that you have the right to do that. So, if you want to, you can and no one can stop you.

Teri Ulm – So it is more than just reading comprehension.

Kassi Rigney – Absolutely.

Florida Man draws blood from his girlfriends.

Teri Ulm –  We are now gonna interrupt this episode to bring you the latest Florida Man news. CBS Tampa Bay reports that Florida Man, who was employed as a paramedic, was arrested following a domestic violence investigation. According to the arrest affidavit, Florida Man got into an argument with his girlfriend after she confronted him about his alleged infidelity. The altercation turned physical and the police were called to the scene. Not only did the lady’s friend call the police, but he fled and then called the police himself to report that he was abused by her. When a detective made contact with Florida Man, they found in put him in possession of prescription drugs.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah.

Teri Ulm – Multiple IV lines, and needles, saline bags, and syringes.

Jacob Rigney – Mm-hmm.

Teri Ulm – Florida Man confessed that he took those items from his work. And during an interview with the victim, the victim told detectives about a separate incident and she was awoken in the middle of the night and she found an IV in her arm with what appeared to be blood being drawn out of it. The victim alleged that one of Florida Man’s previous girlfriends told her that Florida Man would often ask her if he could draw blood from her.

Jacob Rigney – Okay.

Teri Ulm – When the detectives asked Florida Man about the allegation, he denied it. But he did say he has drawn people’s blood in the past for an art project.

Jacob Rigney – Not one that I want to see, but…

Teri Ulm – Now a Florida family found Florida Woman in their home cooking Ramen noodles. After she made a sandwich, and now she’s facing criminal charges.

Jacob Rigney – So are we onto a different Florida person?

Teri Ulm – We are on to a different Florida person.

Jacob Rigney – Okay. Sorry. I wasn’t sure because I was waiting for more terrible Florida paramedic story.

Teri Ulm – No. Just taking blood from girlfriends.

Kassi Rigney – That’s tame.

Teri Ulm – It is tame.

Jacob Rigney – Dracula paramedic of St. Petersburg.

Kassi Rigney – He was just making art with it? He wasn’t actually throwing it on somebody with a fur coat or anything like that?

Jacob Rigney – I don’t know how you use blood to make art. It dries and then it’s all brown and gross. You can’t paint with it. I don’t know.

Teri Ulm – I don’t either.

Jacob Rigney – That’s gross, bro. That’s gross.

Teri Ulm – It is gross.

Kassi Rigney – I thought you’d say he was secretly drugging them and passing her around to his friends.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. I was expecting something much worse.

Teri Ulm – No. Just taking her blood while she is passed out. Which i think is kind of bad.

Jacob Rigney – That’s like c-minus bad for Florida. That’s like…

Kassi Rigney – We’ve been desensitized.

Jacob Rigney – Three Florida dudes are sitting around a desk right now, and one of them is like, so the other weekend I drugged my girlfriend while she was asleep, and the other two are like, hell. We do that every weekend, man. It’s fun.

Kassi Rigney – Want to trade?

Jacob Rigney – No. The answer is no, Florida Man. I do not want to trade.

Florida Woman found cooking $2 Ramen noodles in someone else’s home.

Teri Ulm – Now, Florida family found Florida Woman in their home cooking Ramen noodles after she made a sandwich, and now she’s facing criminal charges. The occupants of the home called the sheriff’s deputies after they found the woman in their kitchen. All the occupants of the home deny knowing her. When the deputies asked the woman about her presence in the home, she told them that an older Florida Man and named Rabbit told her that she can stay there anytime she wanted. She was arrested. Total damages were $2 for noodles $3 for a loaf of bread; total $5.

Jacob Rigney – And that’s inflated. There no where in the world do Ramen noodles cost $2. That’s nonsense.

Kassi Rigney – It sounds like, why were the police involved? If you’re just in there, you’re making Ramen then somebody comes in like: “Well, who are you? Who are you? Nobody knows was going on. Maybe this is my mistake. Why don’t I just go? Like did she not pack up and leave?

Teri Ulm – She left. She left and went down a couple doors and sat on the neighbor’s porch eating her cup of noodles, and the police arrived. They found her there.

Kassi Rigney – That’s scary, but it doesn’t sound like there was ill will on her part.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. It’s possible that that’s a mistake a fact. That is a defense in Indiana. For example, (I don’t know if it is in Florida or not) but it probably is. The mistake of fact statute is confusing and it’s not used very often and used even less successfully, but basically it says that if you were mistaken, if you were reasonably mistaken, which is a big part of it, if you’re a reasonably mistaken about a fact which negates your knowing or intentional commission of the crime, then you’re not guilty of it. So, if she reasonably thought that that was Rabbit’s house, then it’s just a mistake, and she shouldn’t be charged with it. But proving that it was reasonable is difficult because that does not happen every day in the United (well it probably does happen every day in the United States), but it does not happen very often to people. So, you’re gonna have a jury deciding whether that was reasonable or not and most of them are gonna say: “I have never walked into the wrong person’s house because the dude named Rabbit told me it was cool”. That doesn’t sound real to me, and so that defense is a struggle.

Florida police officers apprehend a kangaroo.

Teri Ulm – Now the Florida police officers were called to an unlikely suspect bouncing through the streets of a Florida neighborhood. The Florida police initially thought they were being called out to a signal 69 which surprisingly means that… Well, that’s reserved for cats and dogs. I would think it would be something else.

Jacob Rigney – Just retire that signal, please. Whatever Florida law enforcement agency is using signal 69.

Kassi Rigney – I don’t even know what that is.

Teri Ulm – It”s maybe like a radio call that the dispatchers in Florida use, signal 69…

Kassi Rigney – Okay. It’s just a radio call.

Teri Ulm – Right.

Kassi Rigney – Okay.

Teri Ulm – Which means cat or dog on the loose. Well, Florida police arrived at the scene of the signal 69.

Jacob Rigney – More cats than dogs. Yeah.

Teri Ulm – It was a kangaroo.

Jacob Rigney – Oh. A kangaroo is loose in Florida.

Teri Ulm – It took numerous police officers to apprehend Florida kangaroo.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. It’s like Florida Man, but it can jump much higher. Yeah. And it likes to fight. Oh wait. That’s exactly like Florida Man. It’s just it can jump higher. That’s it.

Teri Ulm – Right. Florida kangaroo was put in the back of a squad car and taken away to where the cops would keep their horses.

Jacob Rigney – Wait. Wait. Wait. They put the kangaroo in the squad car?

Teri Ulm – They did.

Kassi Rigney – What?

Jacob Rigney –  That seems like a terrible idea.

Kassi Rigney – Why? Don’t you call like wildlife people? You put it in your car? Really?

Teri Ulm – They did. It took four of them to put him in there too.

Jacob Rigney – Florida cop disappoints. That must not have been a full-grown kangaroo, because those things are really strong.

Teri Ulm – You’re really smart Jake. It was a medium-sized kangaroo.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. The big ones are big. I watch PBS sometimes.

Teri Ulm – They’re kind of human looking too. At least the torso up. Which is kind of freaky.

Kassi Rigney – Well, when they look like they’re boxing and you get to the male’s fighting.

Teri Ulm – Yeah.

Jacob Rigney – Yep. No they do that. And it’s funny too, because I wasn’t joking. I watched a PBS special on kangaroos. When they are courting females they flex just like Arnold Schwarzenegger does with his fists down around his waist. And they just sit there like flex and show the the female kangaroo all their muscles just over and over again till the females are finally like okay fine here.

Teri Ulm – Just stop.

Jacob Rigney – They flex so hard. It’s funny.

Florida Woman “forgets” about crack pipe in rearend.

Teri Ulm – Now back to Florida Woman. She was arrested after the deputies were called by a homeowner who was away in Canada, but he saw on his security footage that this woman has trespassed on his property, and strips naked (on numerous occasions) and would skinny dip in his pool. The deputies came. They collected cigarettes, keys, women’s underwear, and a steak knife that was left behind.

Jacob Rigney – But no steak?

Teri Ulm – No steak. Just the steak knife. Damn it. Yeah. So, the deputies find Florida Woman, and they questioned her. She denied everything.

Jacob Rigney – Good call.

Teri Ulm – Yep. But Florida Woman’s mother ratted her out.

Jacob Rigney – Florida Mom! What are you doing?

Teri Ulm – Yeah. She said her daughter is lying and she goes over there almost every other day to skinny-dip. And the Florida police deputies also found a set kitchen knives in their kitchen that matched the steak knife that was left at the pool.

Kassi Rigney – So how awful of a person do you have to be to be a Florida Woman and not have a single friend that will let you come to their pool? And there’s two oceans there too. I mean….

Teri Ulm – Well, maybe because she keeps coming naked with like knives and… I don’t know. I might have a problem with that.

Jacob Rigney – I’m not gonna talk about my mom too much on my podcast because she’s a decent human and doesn’t need to be compared next to the people in Florida. Although she is a Florida Woman for six months out of the year. But I want to say it’s strange. My mom is trained. She knows not to talk to police. And, she is most certainly not going to tell the police on me. So, how bad of a person do you got to be when your own mom is like: “Yep. She’s over there. She’s getting naked going in the pool every other day. Why don’t you arrest her?” Don’t snitch on your kids, man. There are a million pools in Florida she’s been denied to, and then her mother turns her in. She’s having a bad week.

Teri Ulm – Yeah. Florida Woman was also arrested for a DUI and afterwards, after the police take her to jail, they do the strip search and they find a crack pipe……… in her private area.

Jacob Rigney – The pause was very important there. They find a crack pipe….. in her private area.

Teri Ulm – Well, it wasn’t until they took x-rays of her, and the x-rays showed this foreign object, and when asked about it she told the deputies she forgot it was there.

Kassi Rigney – I think the polite term might be nature’s purse.

Teri Ulm – No. No. Her anus.

Kassi Rigney – Oh.

Jacob Rigney – Her prison wallet.

Kassi Rigney – Okay, that’s her prison wallet versus nature’s purse. The largest item I heard of being placed in a cavity was a handgun.

Teri Ulm – What?

Kassi Rigney – I was a prosecutor and some piece in the probable cause affidavit came across…

Teri Ulm – Like one of those miniature little pink ones, right?

Kassi Rigney – The report didn’t say how… I assume it was a small handgun It was not indicated that it was a mini like toy gun or anything.No.

Jacob Rigney – It was an AR-15.

Teri Ulm – It wasn’t loaded, right?

Kassi Rigney – I don’t remember. I hope not.

Jacob Rigney – Of course it was. Who would carry a gun and it not be loaded? What would be the point of that?

Kassi Rigney – Well, they’re supposed to take it out and then load it?

Jacob Rigney – Right. It’s going to be all slippery. No.

Kassi Rigney – The delay it takes to get it out to be able to shoot, you can’t add additional delay to load it at that point.

Jacob Rigney – You’re already  keeping it in a very not readily accessible place. You don’t want to have to be slowed down further by having to load it. Because it’s probably a semi-auto too. Because they take up less space I would assume.

Kassi Rigney – More perplexing than that was when I would read reports that people hid marijuana in their body cavity. And the reason for that was, particularly in Marion County, ain’t nothing going to happen to you. And that was back when they were still charging them. Now they don’t. If someone was on probation or parole, okay I could see hiding contraband like that. But just traffic stop, shove your joint up there. I don’t know what kind of horror stories they’re getting, but it’s really not that bad.

Jacob Rigney – Yeah. And that’s really a testament. A lot of these stories are… although they’re all true as far as we know, a lot of these stories are kind of a testament to how bad a decision someone will make when you don’t give them the chance to think about what they’re doing. Even the gun in the vagina, what probably happened is she was keeping it somewhere else and she got pulled over, and she was trying to figure out where to put it, that they wouldn’t find it. And that’s usually what happens with the drugs too. And that’s just… First of all, it’s really dangerous. It’s a terrible idea. Don’t ever do it. But it’s what people think of when they’re scared and they don’t know what else to do. Which kind of highlights the the difference between knowingly committing a crime and intentionally committing one too. Because you can commit all sorts of crimes just by knowingly committing them. And knowing doesn’t take any time at all. It doesn’t take any contemplation. It doesn’t take any concern about the result. It’s just like, you know what you’re doing. Then you’re guilty. Whereas intent is a lot of times what people think of when they think of criminal activity instead. And almost no crimes in Indiana require proof of intent. Almost all of them are just knowing. And terrible decisions like the one that these folks made to put things inside themselves is a classic example of terrible decision making where you don’t give somebody the opportunity to think about what they’re doing. And it’s a problem throughout the country. And critical thinking is also a problem. And if they thought about it for a little while, they would have realized it was a stupid idea. But they didn’t have time, so they didn’t.

Teri Ulm – And that is all the time we have for today.

Jacob Rigney – Alright. Thanks, Teri. And thank you everyone out there for listening to Tales from the Brown Desk. Please remember while we may discuss legal issues and provide information regarding the law to our listeners, we do not intend to create an attorney-client relationship with any listener. Our advice may not be applicable to some legal issues. Please consult with an attorney you have hired to review your legal situation before you attempt to apply the things we have said to your case. You can ask us a question if you like. Just email Teri at [email protected] and in title your email: “Podcast question”, and we’ll read it on our next podcast. Unless we start getting too many questions and then we’ll just read the good ones. We’re not gonna get too many questions though. Buzzsprout says we have 26 listeners. 26 it’s going down. Things aren’t going well for us. Our French listener, however, in some place in France. I forget where now. They keep hanging on. They’re out there listening. So is someone in Boardman,  Oregon. And I don’t know why, but thanks. I think. Goonies never quit. Yeah. Anyhow Goonies never say die. I don’t…. We just watched that the other day, and now I don’t remember how. I suck. Also the attorneys at Rigney Law do not come in on their current pending cases. Nothing we have said in this podcast is a comment on a case we are currently working on, even if your name is Chad or if you were living in France. Bonsoir.