Thank you everyone for your comments about attending our son's sentencing. I read and re-read them all weekend trying to decide what decision I should make. Everyone had such good thoughts and comments. What's right and what's wrong, is it ever clear?
I attended the sentencing this morning. 6 months in the Department of Corrections (DOC) for removal of a theft deterrent device. 5 months in DOC for theft. Time suspended with 18 months intensive probation plus pay court costs, fines, and restitution. This was the result of a plea agreement for a guilty plea.
Now my anger. All along he said he wanted to be sentenced to The Center. It is a half-way house type thing operated by Johnson County and staffed by officers, kind of a jail without bars. They have work programs, NA meetings and treatment, provide a place to live, drug tests and rides to and from work. When the judge and lawyer began talking about this the lawyer informed the judge that our son had a good relationship with his parents and he wanted to be allowed to come back home. in addition he told the judge his parents had be making arrangements to get him in an Oxford House and maybe rehab. The judge then said, "OK, probation with release."
I was sitting there in "the gallery" and by this time I was so angry I am sure if I had stood up to say something the first words out of my mouth probably would have been 'WHAT THE F$@%" and it would have gotten worse from there. I'm sure contempt of court with a fine and jail would not have helped my anger.
All along he had told us his plan was to go to The Center. Then when he sees a chance to come home and probably go back to his old ways he jumps on the opportunity. My anger is directed at him and the justice system. First of all, we had not agreed to "get him into an Oxford House." We had discussed that may be what he needed. We did not agree to more rehab. We had discussed that may be what he needed but how was HE going to pay for it this time. We had already put out $17,000 in one year for 2 stays at rehab. He hears what he wants to hear, and cannot seem to process what is really said. NO ONE FROM THE JUSTICE SYSTEM EVER ASKS DAD AND MOM.
My anger with the justice system. The judge sits up there and agrees to whatever the lawyers say. There is only ONE person in the courtroom that is not and officer of the court or a defendant. THAT IS ME! The judge doesn't question him about moving back with his parents. The judge acknowledges that he violated house arrest and asks why he is incarcerated? My son's lawyer chirps in that he violated house arrest because of a warrant in Leavenworth County for traffic citation. That is why he was transported to and incarcerated in Johnson County. The judges response, "Oh, OK just a traffic warrant." HE VIOLATED HOUSE ARREST BECAUSE I THREW HIM OUT OF THE HOUSE BECAUSE HE WAS USING AGAIN AND MADE HIM TAKE THE DAMN CHIRPER AND DISCONNECT IT FROM THE PHONE LINE. No one says that. That is what put him in violation, LV County picked him up for JO County and then found his outstanding warrant and held him.
At least then the judge ask about any other outstanding warrants. KCKS has a warrant and so does LV County. The judge ordered him held until they decide if they want to come get him. If they don't come and get him, he comes home.
Home does not work for him or us. It just begins a cycle of promises, boredom and using.
We live in a rural/suburban area. There is no place close for him to work. There is no mass transit for him to get to place to work. He has a suspended license with no way to pay his fines so no way to get a license. He does not have a vehicle. All he did was get himself sent to a place that he knows that he can continue his using any time he wants. After all, we know dealers deliver. Dealers are better than Pizza Hut, Pizza Hut won't even deliver to our house.
Violation of his probation results in 11 months in the state pen.
If you have read this far thank you for suffering through my venting.