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What to Do When You are Wrong
© by Jennifer McLeod writing as jenjen0703, all rights reserved.
Early Days of Writing
When I first began writing for HubPages, I had no experience with blogging, text editors, back links, or any of the other many things on a long list you learn as a writer. I spent hours reading the Learning Center. I love to write and journal, so why not take some time to write articles that could help others and make some make money?
I have learned that the best way to write is to tell the truth in my stories. By doing so, I avoided issues such as plagiarism. Telling the truth also means I have to be sure there is credibility in my writing by researching the information thoroughly. I learned, the hard way, to be careful of the words you print when it comes to other people's opinion or "side or the story" because misinformation could cause harm to others.
A few months after I started writing, a unique opportunity presented itself, something I was completely unprepared for...
Defending a Criminal
I recently spent around four months writing on behalf of a man who was charged with some serious crimes. He was facing a long time in prison if convicted of these crimes.
When I first heard of his charges on the news, I was stunned. I did not know the man well, but I knew of him and had heard many people talk about him in a positive manner for several years. I had never heard anything bad about him. He had a large pillow of support underneath of him. For several years, he operated an animal rescue, and later, a youth residential facility for older male foster children. He also had several children of his own, some of which were adopted.
Over 700 people signed a petition to show support in his innocence. I did not have much to say when I first heard the news. I felt that something happened somewhere, or it would not be spread all over the news.
It was not until one of the victims came forward, signed a notarized statement, and talked to the local news station that I started to feel like maybe this man could be the victim of some type of government corruption.
At that point, I offered my assistance, and like a (moron), I ignorantly defended this accused man, with a few other people who will later be called the "Followers".
What is a Follower?
To be a Follower, there were many "dirty deeds done dirt cheap".
- Scooping ankle-deep horse manure from barn stalls
- Writing blogs
- Attending court hearings
- Stalking innocent people
- Committing slander online
- Breaking no-contact orders
- Getting CPS called on you for not going along with The Terpening Plan
Recanting the Recant
After a period of time, the recanting victim became homeless and needed a place to stay. I had an extra bedroom and decided to open my home to him. In a very short amount of time, he revealed to me that his recant was a lie and the original charges against the accused man still stood true.
I was shocked and at a loss for words. Despite any remorse and guilt I was feeling, I had to do the right thing and report what I knew. No matter what, the victim's well-being had to be my primary focus.
I contacted the proper authorities and resigned from my position of defending the suspect. Information I had possession of subsequently cause the suspect to become arrested on charges of bond violation.
The Web Site with Viruses
A man named Rob saw the news about the case and decided he was not liking the information he was hearing. He was disgusted with the way the Followers were handling themselves and acting out in public. A few exchanges in comments sections of various media sites had alternate sides in this case feuding and arguing.
Instead of bringing forth facts and evidence, the Followers through out allegations and at times, lies, to cover up the people that later transcripts show them to be. They lashed out and called Rob a troll.
So, Rob created a Web site that brought truth and evidence in the case to people's attention who would not receive it any other way. Rob is a sworn enemy to the Followers. When the victim confessed that the recant was a lie, I had no one to turn to, aside from the investigators and prosecutors in this case.
The suspect told everyone to avoid Rob's site, alleging it had viruses and would make people's computers crash if they visited it. Of course the suspect did not want people visiting the site. It was the first site to report the transcripts when they became available to the public.
Had I saw those transcripts first, I would have never offered my assistance. Never, again. Next time, I will let the jury decide the suspect's fate and remember to keep the victim first in importance.
Making Things Right
Sometimes, we can never totally make our actions right. But, we can learn from our actions and use them as tools to not make the same dumb choices again.
I no longer support the suspect in this case. My statements, as well as the victims, caused the man to be arrested on bond violation charges and put back in jail on a $750,000 cash bond. I do not think he will be getting out anytime soon.
I have received a large amount of negative criticism from the suspect's family and friends. It has made life a bit stressful. The truth will be revealed very soon, but I do not have to be a part of that roller coaster ride. I do not have to be part of the Followers who abuse anyone who stand up against them.
I choose to be honest and credible. That is the only way to get to the truth of these charges against this man.