CITIZENS DEPRIVED OF CIVIL RIGHTS
by Jesus Ramos
On Being a Political Prisoner
by Jesus Ramos
In 1967 we moved to the State of New Hampshire from the Bronx, New York. Our family including my parents, my brothers Gregory, Manuel, and my sisters Elba and Carmen. I took my wife Nilda and my daughter Madelene who was my only child then. Once we arrived in Manchester, New Hampshire we met my oldest sister, Margaret Arroyo and her family. We also met the Del Riso Family, Angel Rodriquez, Pedro Velez and nine other young men who were single and all had started to work at the Chicoppee Mills and the Waumbex Company.
About three months after our arrival in Manchester, we moved to a housing project named Rock Rimmon Projects on Kimball Street on the west side of the city. This was our first housing project and we felt very happy to have been given the opportunity to arrive in what we thought to be a great place to live. However, the Kimball Street Project Housing was considered to be for low income people and the police in that city had no respect for the residents. One day a young man told my brother Gregory that the police had arrested a young Spanish man. My brother went to find out who they arrested and the reason. Upon his arrival at the station he was confronted by a policeman named Nelson. When my brother asked why the young man was arrested this policeman attacked my brother and another jumped to help him too, Campbell attacked my brother after Nelson had initially. Once they had Greg down on the floor and hand cuffed, they placed him along with the young man, whose name is Candido Otero, they tried to hang them with belts but the boys fought to survive; other police officers intervened not allowing them to continue their abusive behavior. When I learned that my brother and Candido were in the police station, I rushed there with several others to investigate what had occurred. Upon my arrival the police at the desk began making derogatory statements about our culture. They laughed and made jokes asking such questions as, "Is Puerto Rico a jungle where wild beasts run loose? How did you get here?, on a Banana boat? Where is your Green Card? There were only a few officers that did not partake in this behavior and asked us not to pay any attention to the comments being stated by those who were racist. Polocakis, Dubois, Danny Gagnen and Officer Shaw were among the police officers who respected the law and treated us with dignity. However, Nelson, Campbell, Cook, and many more used the police shield to abuse its powers.
They also began stopping us everywhere we went in the city and would pad us down in front of the public causing us to feel embarrassed and ashamed. We were informed that they would continue to harass us until we left their town or face even more severe punishment.
In summer, 1970 my brother Greg asked me to lend my car to pick up his girlfriend Lynnette and Diane Miller. He was accompanied by Bryce Polites who was Diane (Dee Dee) Miller's boyfriend. My brother convinced me to lend him the vehicle and he picked up the girls, but instead of returning to pick me up for the baseball game we had in the town of Nashua, New Hampshire, he went to pick up another passenger name Morris Dumont. They drove to Worchester, Massachusetts where Morris Dumont purchased twelve bags of drugs.
When my brother returned we were in Nashua already. He drove there to meet us. We had already played our first game of the double header and we were about to start our second game. My brother asked me to allow him and Bryce to play in the second game and for me to drive the girls home as well as Morris. Upon arriving in Manchester, I drove to Lynnette's house first dropping her off, thereafter proceeding to Kimball Street to drive Diane and Morris as that is where I lived as well. Once I arrived at the Conner Store at the entrance of the Kimball Street Projects, a detective vehicle followed me and then asked me to stop. I stopped and he asked me to step outside my vehicle. He searched me and searched everyone else. Detective Luis Craigh was searching me. Edmond LaBouff was searching Morris and all of a sudden, Edmond LaBouff told Luis Craigh to place us under arrest.
We were taken to the police station where they left us until their shift changed, when, to my surprise, they allowed Diane Miller to go and Morris Dumont but they held me in the station charging me with possession of narcotics. A young woman by the name of Denese Bennet and her mother bailed me out when she heard what happened to me. I didn't even know her well. The detective who made the investigation charging me, allowing Morris to go, was Raymond Bouchard. He knew that the drugs were not mine because the drugs were inside a glass case which belonged to Morris and he gave the case and the glasses to him then he told me what he had done, in other words there was more of this type of punishment for me if I chose to remain in that city.
When I went to trial, I was given an ultimatum to take a sentence of 1 year to 3 and only serve seven months in prison or take it to trial and face up to 15 years in prison. My lawyer was convinced that a jury then would definitely have found me guilty no matter how innocent I may have been. I took the plea and served the seven months in prison.
On July 6, 1971 a policeman arrested me for having no inspection on my parked car. I was ordered to pay a $5.00 fine although it wasn't much, I shouldn't have had to pay that fine because my vehicle was in my parking place.
On August 10, 1972 I worked at a fiberglass company making bathtubs. The owner was Mr. Chales Raynolds. On August 10, 1972 as soon as I exited the bus when it reached the nearest bus stop to my house two policemen approached me and one hit me on my head with a blackjack knocking me unconscious and breaking my forehead but that was not enough because they continued to beat on me until they hit me so many times that they awakened people with their blows.
My cousin's wife, Carmin ran outside her house and yelled, "Chuito, I am going to call for help!" They were choking me with one of their knees to my throat and finally, they had cuffed me so hard and tight that the cuffs were not able to be opened at the station with the key. Another policeman in the station saw the two struggling trying to take the handcuffs off. While they were hurting me, he noticed that my right arm was pitch black. He intervened, trying to use their key. He ran after them, chasing them out of the room. He then took me to the garage and with a hacksaw began cutting the cuffs off. My left arm was purple and my right was black. As he began cutting the handcuffs off, my flesh began to burn and the instant the first was cut off, I fell to the ground and stayed hanging by my other arm that was still hand cuffed. I felt a quick shock that travelled through my arms to my heart.
I was charged with assault on police officers and with resisting arrest. It was common for the police in that town to make arrests of this nature, charging people since they don't have probable cause to arrest a person. I was ordered to pay $250.00 by Judge Armand Capistrand. He was another person who used to make many jokes against Hispanics.
By 1972 more Hispanics had arrived because members of their families were already there. Others, who were living in Lowell and Lawrence, Massachusetts, knew they would find work in Manchester. As more Hispanics arrived, more unlawful arrests were made. My brother and I spent many hours in the courts interpreting for those who couldn't speak English.
I became a target for the police, although they did not arrest me every time. They did harass me every time I drove with my family. They hated me even more because I helped others in court enabling some to be released from false charges which had to be brought to the superior court.
By 1973 I left Manchester with my family and returned to Puerto Rico. While there I met Major John Toledo who gave me land to build my own home. I lost my land when I returned back to the States.
While living in Puerto Rico, there was a strike in which no milk or rice was sold to anyone. My daughter Maggie was only one month old. I walked all day long until about 7:00 PM begging store owners to at least sell me a pint for $10.00 or $20.00 to no avail everywhere I went. When I returned home my wife Nilda told me that she gave her lemon juice she had picked some lemons from the tree we had on the land on which we lived. I was hurt and angry and returning to the states was easy. My wife arrived in Dorchester first with two of the children. I remained in Cayey with my two oldest, Madelene and Angie, who were attending school. Two months later, Nilda arrived to pick up the girls. I met with her several months later when we moved back to Manchester, New Hampshire moving back to the Projects on Kimball Street.
In 1975 early in the morning I went to purchase some juice, cereal, and fruit for my children's breakfast. I had placed some items at the counter already and was searching for some juice in the back when two policemen arrived inside the store. They attacked a young man named Thomas Aiken. Tommy was screaming "Leave me alone, what do you want to tell me, I haven't done nothing [anything]wrong! Show me a warrant or arrest me if you are."
William Derouchard (Bill) the store owner called the police on his phone to complain about their unlawful activity and more policemen arrived at the scene but instead of correcting the problem, five walked into the store and then attacked me, beating me to the point that I needed to be treated at the Elliot Hospital. On June 30, 1975 the three of us were arrested, Tomas Aiken, the store owner, and me. The court released Thomas because there were no charges against him and Bill was asked by Armond Capistrand to plea Nolo contendre and was released. Then the judge stated, "OK, bring in Jesus Ramos; he is the one I want." He began to announce different fines based on complaints of assault on police officers; a $200.00 fine for assault was assessed, as well as a $100.00 fine for resisting arrest, interfering with the police $100.00, and disorderly conduct a $100.00 fine. I felt betrayed by the Justice Department. I wondered how the police could beat people down for no reason and then allowing the court to refuse to hear our version instead levying fines on us too.
On January 27, 1976 they picked up my dog which was a little cocker poodle and kept him locked up a the dog pound for three days, to them it was a great joke, but to my dog it was a terrible experience. He almost went crazy.
On January 29, 1976 when I was employed for Kollsmans Instruments, a company that made airplane parts and one that had offered me a great future with them besides hiring both my sisters Elba and Carmen, the police took my license away preventing me from being able to find a way to get to work. My job was located in Merrimack, New Hampshire but there were no buses to get there. I asked a young man to give me a ride to the highway where my foreman stopped and offered a ride. I only had one leg inside of the vehicle when the police asked me to step out of the car giving me a fine and one to the driver. The reason was that I was a pedestrian on limited access highway #10.
In 1976 while my wife and I went to do our grocery shopping two police officers went into my house and assaulted my eldest daughter, Madelene and searched through my house. Mrs. Gage, my cousin Herbert, and his wife, Mariane were all waiting for us to arrive to make sure that I answered to that complaint in a calm and proper manner, Eddie and Mariana accompanied me to the police station where I spoke to the Chief of Police, Thomas King. He sent the now Deputy Chief of Police, Mike Welch who was a detective at that time, to interview my daughter about our allegation. He made a report but nothing was ever done after the report was filed to satisfy the problem. Instead, he sent a group of police to beat up one of our Spanish neighbors, Mrs. Sylvia Torres Nunez. They beat her and her children and threw her down the stairs, thereafter fleeing the scene without any arrest having been made.
In 1976 they also began beating on a young man named Lorenzo Torrez before a large crowd ultimately beating everyone near. They were arresting white as well as the Hispanics. White are mistreated too because this is not only a racial state, it's a police state. The police can do as they want and be absolved; it's that simple. On that day they shot Anaval Vasquez who was lucky to be very slim and avoided being critically hurt by the bullet that scratched his flesh and crossed the vest he wore. Since then, Anaval Vasquez has been a victim of several false arrests and had to spend many months incarcerated until trial dates before being released. No lawyers accept cases on our behalf in that state so the police might loose the case in the criminal courts but get away from law suits.
In 1978 I was traveling on Hanover Street headed to one of the lakes on the outskirts of the town when I saw an elderly couple that had just moved into my neighborhood. I turned my vehicle and told my brother, Manuel that I was going to offer the couple a ride home. I stopped just near the Sacred Heart Hospital and offered the couple a ride which they accepted. I drove west to the Kimball Street Projects, when I reached the Bridge Street bridge four police cars speeded past me and I saw two more blocking the entrance to the bridge and another came next to my car. At first I thought that someone might have robbed the Saint Mary's Bank on McGregor Street which is located at the end of the bridge on the west side but it was only another way to let me know how much hate they had toward me. The police on the car near me came out, jumping on top of my hood, the top of my car, while others were knocking on my window, asking me to step out of my car and fight with them. I asked my brother, Manny to remain calm and paid no attention to them. Then, I turned back to the elderly couple and asked them to forgive me because I did not have any idea that they were going to do that to me. The gentleman told me that he understood how they operated. After several minutes of their games they all left.
The Hispanics and white folks all have complained to Mary Morgan, director of the Housing Authority, to Harry Spanos, and to the General of the National Guard in a meeting we held with them as well as two reporters from the Manchester Union Leader and the Boston Globe. Susan Coleman was the person who called all our guests and we all brought out our complaints to them after we had our big dinner with them.
Also in 1976 the Hispanics went to see the Governor to complain about the way in which they were treated by the police. I was in New York searching for help and missed the trip to see Governor Meldrin Thomson, Jr. He did offer them some help but it was not to our satisfaction. He appointed a young man named Luis Lopez to be the Hispanic representative and gave them a bus to take the neighborhood children out camping and to the beach, but the problem with the police only grew worse.
I was very active in my community; we had a center to which the Hispanics went for assistance, but we need more than what the Latin American Center was offering the Puerto Rican population which was the largest amongst the Hispanic people.
In 1978 we formed a group and organized ourselves creating a program called Active Hispanic Association (A.H.A.). We got our help from a young man who at the time was studying law, Juan Figueroa. He helped us with all the legal remedies that needed to be done. Once we had the program well on the way I began a different program called Project Hope which was aimed to reduce the drinking and the drug use by the young people in our neighborhood, a problem that the police had created themselves by forcing the youth of our neighborhood to retaliate the only way they knew how. I thought it was time to at least try to reduce the problem. Project Hope was a sports program aimed to keep the youth active in sports and to return their pride and dignity. The police saw the reduction of arrest and they needed me out of the way before all the youth were cured. They got me out of their way for sure.
In 1979 at the midnight hour a young man from Franklin, New Hampshire, Daniel Hackett, not my neighbor as they told the news papers, began kicking on my door, drawing me out of my home to go and speak to my neighbor, David Gage who was in the front of the building, Hackett was kicking my back door. I had no idea that he would confront me or the others out in the front, but he did and first picked up David Gage and threw him up in the air and then chased Kenneth Moore. He quickly turned starting to run toward me. I began dancing zig-zag backwards, sidestepping. I had a gun on my waistline; it fell down some and I did not want him to get ahold of it, so I pulled it out and revealed it to him telling him that I wasn't able to fight with him at the moment because I was armed. He kept coming toward me, however. I shot a shot to the ground but still he kept coming. I then shot him in the leg. He said, "Now I'm mad." He tried to grab the gun causing a bullet to fire by itself. I realized that my warning shots were not stopping his aggressive behavior, so I jumped up in the air and kicked him onto his stomach with another kick to the side of his ribs then as he folded downwards, I struck him on his head with the butt of my gun. He fell on one knee and then ran toward another building. I called my neighbor David Gage and asked him to assist me to offer him help because I knew that a bullet had struck his leg. We approached Hackett inside the hallway and offered him help but he said he was fine except that he was dizzy from the blow to the head. I grabbed him and placed his arms over my shoulders. David did the same with his other arm so we could bring him out to the porch. I asked my cousin Danny Ramos to bring my car. As Danny grabbed my keys, Kenneth Moore went to get his pick-up truck. At the same time a lady, Ms. Taylor came out of her house and told me she had just called the police to tell them that I had just shot someone. David and Danny both asked me to hide reminding me how much I was hated by the police. They told me that they would explain to the police what occurred before I turned myself in at the police station.
No sooner than they said that than a police officer rushed into the projects. I fled and hid myself in some bushes behind my house. Before too long, the projects were filled with police vehicles from different towns as well. I realized that I had been set up. Hackett had a long record of assault on police officers and I guess they dropped those charges provided he participated in their frame up. The first policeman I faced was Leo LeBlanc. They had searched the area where I was and my house too. I was able to see most of their actions from the bushes where I was laying down. At one point I decided to come out and go up to my house to make the necessary phone call to let them know that I was giving myself up. As soon as I got near my door, I heard police radios inside my house. I returned back outside the building and went to the corner of the building to see if it was clear. Instead, I met Leo LeBlanc who was just coming around the corner himself with the girl Hackett was dating, Doris Danoncourt. She lives on the third floor of my building and was seen accompanying LeBlanc to get her shoes.
When LeBlanc saw me he reached for his gun. However, I had mine in my hands already so I just lifted it up and pointed to him saying, "No, don't do that." He asked me what I was going to do. I said, "Nothing." I didn't mean to hurt him. Then LeBlanc said, "Man, are you in a lot of trouble?" I said, "Yes, I know." He said, "I don't have anything to do with this." This is personal; he tried to take his gun out once again. I lifted my gun pointing to his head. I warned him not to do that. He then asked me, "What are you going to do, hold me hostage?" I replied, "Yes, but only with the purpose to reach the front part safely where I can give myself up to the police. You already stated that you have something personal against me and the last time I was told they had something personal against me, five cops jumped me at the corner store." He then said, "I'm not going with you anywhere." He tried for his gun again but this time he began moving backwards. I began feeling nervous and very frustrated and told him, "Look I am not going to take you to New York or Puerto Rico. All I want you to do is go there and at that instant, I turned pointing with my gun toward the street. He pulled his revolver, pointing it toward my head. As I turned back to him, I saw a flash coming from his revolver and another and another. I was very fortunate that I was able to move my skinny and very flexible neck so quickly with my shoulders. He fired a shot which crossed my shoulder. The bullet came out of my neck from the back of my shoulders to the front of my neck. Then I fired back at him striking him in his chest area. I was very lucky that he wore a bulletproof vest. It he hadn't been wearing it, he would have died. I was rushed to the Catholic Medical Hospital by ambulance and once again I was very lucky. A freckled faced redhead name Lewis took me there because the doctor in the emergency room did not want to attend me. The young man called another doctor named Dr. Atta who quickly left his house at hours after midnight to operate on me instantly.
The next day I was in a hospital bed. My sister, my wife, and others were visiting me when the judge, Armand Capistrand, arrived. The first thing he did was to disconnect the phone in my room. Then, he read the Intent to Murder charges against me for the policeman Leo LeBlanc.
My sister along with another law student, Annie Lopez began working hard on the case. The community at large did not rest well until the trial came. I was appointed a public defender to represent me. He was very sharp and articulate and had the case beat before he began fighting it. The state bought him with a big payoff. He first did not allow some of my witnesses to testify. Charles LaVallier had a very important testimony to offer the court concerning an earlier attempt to have me killed by the police. He told my attorney at a meeting he held on his porch that in 1976 he heard through a police radio one of his family members had heard a call asking, "Did you get Jesus Ramos? They answered, "No, but we got another Puerto Rican anyway." That was supposed to be on the day which they shot Anival Vasquez.
My lawyer refused to put both the elderly on the stand. They wanted to testify concerning the abuse they witnessed on the Bridge Street bridge by the police when they closed the bridge down only to jump on top of my car and nothing else.
My cousin, Eddie and his wife were denied the ability to testify concerning my daughter's assault upon her by the two cops that walked into my home and hurt her. My lawyer only asked witnesses at the actual scene to testify. He also asked character witnesses in my behalf including Sister Pauline Chabott, a Catholic nun who worked with the Hispanic people at the American Center then started working with the children at the Kimball Street Projects. My lawyer also placed on the stand as character witness a Puerto Rican young man who also spoke very well on my behalf.
Facing charges such as those was very critical and very distressful. I was scared and thought I wouldn't see my children for a very long time. My bail was over half a million dollars cash. No bonds or securities then when the trials began I had to face a trial against the Intent to Murder against Daniel Hackett alone, separate from the other case of Leo LeBlanc, so that if they did not find me guilty in one, they would find me guilty in the other case.
My first trial was easy to win; I had all the witnesses giving the same version of what occurred on August 1, 1979. Everyone saw me retreating away from Hackett and warning him that I was armed, not wanting to fight. But, what I did not expect was for him to get on the witness stand and speak in my behalf especially in the manner which he did in which he demonstrated that he was very upset about the police shooting me.
The jury announced a not guilty verdict, then I faced another trial but one that was much more dramatic for my family and me. This time I was facing a Capital Intent to Kill a Police Officer.
My lawyer did not want me to take the stand, but I was viewing fowl play way in advance. They had planned to have the jury (a new jury) believe that I shot a police officer, but without allowing them to know the reasons behind the entire scene. When I took the case over the prosecutor's objections and instructions by the judge I made a firm statement to the jury as follows:
"Before I answer any question they will say that they are making me to appear as if I hate policemen and that I just saw one and like a mad cowboy I just shot one, but they are not telling you about the previous case where there was a man kicking my doors down and I shot him and that's what brought this case about." The foreman then asked the court to be specific. The judge Arthur E. Bean, stated he only could tell them that a jury trial had been held and a not guilty verdict had been handed down. I was still in the dark until my two character witnesses testified in my behalf. When my attorney had the chance to interrogate Leo LeBlanc who broke up on the witness stand that won my case to the point of the jury finding me not guilty to the Intent Capital Murder charges, however the judge then gave instructions to find me guilty of lesser included charges of aggravated assault, misuse of a firearm and possession of a firearm by a felon. The judge also had given immunity to Leo LeBlanc when he admitted that he was only two blocks away and that he rushed to come and kill me; he also stated that killing me was like shooting at a paper target and that the instruction he had received concerning a hostage situation he had thrown in the trash.
The case took its turn and giving him immunity made me angry. No conviction should have been made except for him to be prosecuted for intending to kill me. I appealed my conviction and more corruption came out. The state's witness did not come. Doris Donancourt, while the prosecutor stated that he had no contact with her, we learned that she had been in his office several times and that was brought up in trial and also on my appeal which was one of the reasons I won a new trial.
I spent two and a half years in prison at the New Hampshire State Prison in Concord, New Hampshire.
When the case was overturned my lawyer, Bruce Kenna visited me downstairs in the court house at the Hillsborough Superior Court in Manchester, New Hampshire telling me that a deal was set up for me which I wasn't able to refuse. The deal package included release from prison, financial assistance to move anywhere I so desired and a threat if I did not accept the deal. One of my children would be run over by a vehicle while they went or returned home from school and that the police were going to have someone else do it for them, he added, if they don't hurt my children they will get to me by harming my wife. I refused to take the deal but he returned several times until he finally convinced me to sign on the dotted line. Six months later, I was released and allowed to transfer to New York because Senator Olga Mendez, Angelo Del Torro, and from Washington, DC our Puerto Rican Commissioner Bastazar Corrada Del Rio helped in assuring me that I did receive a fair trial. He sent me back to New York and that no harm came to me or my family. Nancy Meerham and Paul Blumemthal from the Manchester Union Leader also helped me with all the articles they wrote concerning my case and none of their articles were as biased as that of Jim Flannigan.
In 1982 I returned to New York. I began to go to school at Hostos Community College at 500 East 149th Street and Grand Concourse Avenue. I also worked for Michrographics at 2 Lafayette Street for the City of New York. Additionally, I coached two Little League Baseball teams in Central Park for the Juan Conde Organization. I was very happy here in New York but my family had been raised in New Hampshire. They did not like living in the big city. One day in 1984 my family left to New Hampshire without saying a word to me. I came to find out after returning from school. I went to speak to my school counselor Mr. Carlos Martinez and then to my parole officer Mr. Denis Gurgen telling them that I was returning back to Manchester. They both disagreed with my decision and warned me of the consequences of a police set up if I returned there, but I was brave and took my chances.
The police began filming me by way of video cameras through an apartment at the Kimball Street Projects and through video cameras they had installed in a van, however, they never saw me do anything wrong, so they had to come with a different plan in order to retaliate for winning my liberty in the previous case.
The first thing they did was arrest my son Jesus Ramos, Jr. several times. They forced him to go to the police station where they had new police officers looking through a one way window at me. This was just the beginning. Another tactic they performed was to find out where I was employed. They spoke with William Clark and had him lay me off from my job. Nelson was the policeman who I saw talking to my boss at a construction site where we were working on Brown Avenue in Manchester, New Hampshire during the summer of 1985.
On October 16, 1985, my brother Gregory was announced dead from the virus AIDS but he didn't die just from the virus but from the kind of treatment he received while he was ill. We began an investigation and travelled here to New York. My sisters and two of my Hispanic friends accompanied me here where my father and my brother Manuel joined us to visit Geraldo Rivera who worked for the 20/20 news program then.
Geraldo was not available to us and we left him some documentation for him to review if he wished. Several days later or about October 19, 1985 they placed my son's name in the newspaper as the most wanted in the state. My son was only 14 years old. They released his age, height, facial photo, and his address. My son ran away from home when he saw the article. On, or about October 23, 1985 Geraldo Rivera announced his resignation from the 20/20 news program.
On October 25, 1985 a group of policemen broke into my home about 5:00 A.M. and began to attack my body. It started with a knock on my door and I asked, "Who is it?" The policeman responded, "Ramon." I told him that I was unclothed and said to him that I wasn't going to open the door to anyone at those hours unless it was a family emergency. The door was burst open and a large group of 18 policemen ran into my house with the first one assaulting me with a shield. Another struck me with the butt of a revolver. Then, they began kicking me throughout my entire body.
I lost consciousness until I heard my wife, Nilda yelling and screaming "aiee Dios Mio, aiee Dios Mio." I jumped up in the air on a fighting stand with my vision blurred and quickly asked them to arrest me and to leave her alone. One police office came from the living room and asked the others to allow him to handle the situation. He brought my pants to me after which the hand cuffed me and escorted me out of my house. They did not allow me to wear a t-shirt or a jacket, just my pants.
In the police station they charged me with four counts of sales of cocaine. I fought my innocence from the beginning of that case.
On October 28, 1985 I was sent to the Valley Street jail awaiting trial and was charged with four counts of sale of cocaine in which they wanted to charge me separately on every count.
On November 16 or 17, 1985 the parole officer Bruce Weshler along with my assigned lawyer held a hearing for violation of parole. They brought with them one of the accusing officers. That was the first time I had ever seen that man in my life. I wasn't too happy with my lawyer for allowing him to be in the same room as I was. This is especially true because I had requested her to hold a hearing in court and to find several Hispanics to pick one out of a line up and then see if Brackett was telling the truth. If he picked someone else from the line up instead of me, then we could prove my innocence. Instead there I was having been seen by the man who was going to the stand on my trial and say that I was the person who sold him the drugs. I felt betrayed by my lawyer and I was angry. On that same day I was transferred to the New Hampshire State Prison.
On April 12, 1986 the prison officials released me. They gave me gate money and release papers even though I told them that I had a trial pending. They refused to allow me to stay or to bring me to court before a justice. I then called my sister Elma and told her to come to pick me up quickly because I did not trust the prison officials with what they were doing. I told my sister to go straight to a Friendly's Ice Cream Restaurant in Concord, New Hampshire saying that I would be waiting for her there. My sister went there and took me to Boston to the Bus Terminal and from there, I went to live in Hartford, Connecticut for two months until they arrested me on charges they lodged against me for being a fugitive of justice.
On June 2, 1986 I was arrested by the Weathersfield Police Department in Connecticut for the charges of fugitive of justice against me by the State of New Hampshire. I spent ten days at the Morgan Street jail and two months at the Weston Street Jail in Hartford, Connecticut.
In September 1986 I was returned to the Valley Street Jail in New Hampshire where I was immediately placed into the "Hole." My sister, Elba, who was working for the New Hampshire Public Defender's program as interpreter and as a private investigator saw me in the basement cell while she was going to interview a Hispanic young man named Junior Pagan from Nashua, New Hampshire. She called Joyce Guy and questioned him as to who had placed me there. He told her that he did himself under the direction of Skippy, his commanding officer. Sergeant Guy told my sister not to worry that he would remove me from that place and he did so before my sister left the institution.
This was just the beginning of many problems that I had to face in this jail until the trial began. The Hearings were held, first before Judge Wyman who ordered that the confidential informers who were claimed by the police to have been accompanying them during their so called purchase of drugs to be brought to the court to testify as to what they knew. For some reason the judge not only removed himself from the case, but from the bench as well.
Another judge took on the case, this time Judge Arthur E. Bean. He changed the original order by request of the prosecutor who requested that two jury trials be held without the confidential informers. Then he allowed the confidential informer to testify on the remaining cases. What he did was actually fool the judge for going along with his request and the judge for changing Judge Wyman's previous order.
The first two jury trials were held; the jurors were informed that a confidential informer on the said occasion was present but that person was not to be introduced for protection reasons. The prosecutor was also allowed to make several inflammatory statements against my person including a statement in which he used my vehicle which was an old 1974 Cadillac to persuade the jury to believe that it was a very expensive vehicle that I was not able to purchase unless I was a drug dealer. He stated that no one could own a gold Cadillac unless he is a drug dealer and in my case I owned a gold Cadillac. He continued, that I always paid my rent on time even though I was not employed. He asked my lawyer, Bruce Kenna to correct those statements and he refused to object or to make any corrections. My wife, Nilda had been working at the E.P.E. Company. That's how we paid our rent and bought food. However, my lawyer knew that my gas and cable had been shut off due to my financial status before my arrest. His not objecting to those comments made me feel that they all wanted me to be in jail.
I was found guilty for selling a teardrop of cocaine which should have been dismissed before we even went to trial. Documents revealed the errors committed by the accusing officer when he wrote on his statements that he purchased his third and final sale from me and that prior to that he had purchased twice from another person name Jesus Esposito. Not only did he make that error stating that it was on September 9, 1985 and on September 13, 1985, but he also claimed that Esposito was with me in the apartment when this occurred. In another statement he claimed that I was the only occupant of the apartment. How many discrepancies can an officer be allowed to commit to falsely accuse someone of wrong doing and yet a jury to find an innocent man guilty?
A jury under certain instructions may commit the mistake, but this was not a regular jury. One was asked to remove himself from the jury because he was a brother to one of the court's prosecutors. The question which remained is how many others might have been related to police officers and members of the court. In addition with all the information documented why did the two trials which I believe that he did so in retaliation for the reversal I got from the previous case in which he was the one who sat on that case as well. He also resigned the bench after my trials. He ordered me to stand committed to a term of 3 1/2 to 7 years and 5 to 15 consecutive terms. He did award me my pre-trial confinement time and sentenced me under the stature RSA; 651: 2-II-e, in which a person received good time of 12 1/2 days per month on both the minimum term and the maximum term of his sentence. The prison officials denied me without any valid reasons both of my accredited good times. Since the judge accredited me with 473 days jail time and also with 328 days disciplinary free good time my first sentence should have already been erased instead of being released in 1989, I had to serve until 1995 which was a term of ten years.
In addition to the amount of time I received, two guards at the Valley Street Jail assaulted me. I was also denied medical attention on a different occasion at the same jail. I sued both the Manchester Police Department and the Hillsborough County Jail which is the same as the Valley Street Jail.
On May 22, 1995 I will appear at the New Hampshire Federal District Court in Concord, New Hampshire on a status review hearing on the two lawsuits.
In 1992 while at the Cheshire Corrections in Connecticut, I was poisoned and had to be rushed to an outside hospital. I did not sue them because it's too hard. My experience in law does not help me to be competent to handle this much workload at the same time. I need an attorney to help me but can't find one willing to defend me against those abusers in the north and the lawyers in the north are not wiling to argue in my behalf.
Editor's note: This matter will be referred to an attorney who may take the case. This attorney handles immigration law presently at this writing dated June 15, 1995.