11 Comments

  1. Adam Hescock
    Adam Hescock August 27, 2021 at 1:39 pm | | Reply

    Great interview. Couldn’t agree more on how important it is to build trust and confidence with a client at their arraignment. Often difficult to do by phone.

  2. Kelly Green
    Kelly Green August 27, 2021 at 6:37 pm | | Reply

    Thank you for making this show, Erica. What has been missing in discussions about the future of Vermont’s court system has been an acknowledgment and understanding that we are serving real, live people. And while it may be some bureaucrat’s dream to remake the judiciary into a virtual experience, the truth is that in Vermont we’ve been doing things a certain way for a couple hundred years, it works well, and it reflects our values.

  3. Daniel Stevens
    Daniel Stevens August 28, 2021 at 10:52 am | | Reply

    What a good depiction of what public defenders do! Thank You

  4. Tristan stowards
    Tristan stowards August 28, 2021 at 12:16 pm | | Reply

    Whaaaat?
    WTF?
    WT actual F?
    We have a grumpy old leftist broadcaster here in Australia who likes to refer to your country as a failed state, and we know when he does this that he is gently rubbing, suggesting that there are things the USA could do better. But what this show does is describe a failed state in action. You can’t call it Kafkaesque, because that would imply that some impenetrable, seemingly absurd logic is at work. What’s going on here is Judgesque – after a Mike Judge – stupid processes put in place by stupid people, and the system breaks and the outcome is dreadful.
    Great show. I hope sanity prevails in the Vermont legal system.

  5. Susan Randall
    Susan Randall August 28, 2021 at 3:04 pm | | Reply

    Thank you Erica, as always, for paying such close attention to, and always asking: what is happening to the often disconnected, voiceless, hard- working, citizens in poverty who are disenfranchised in this country? The criminal justice system (and the world) is supremely compromised right now. Mother Earth is pissed.

    Thank you Dan and Mike, for speaking such clear truth here, and for staying in the trenches and trying to reach these folks and advocate. “Emergency” = loss of connection, freedoms & rights. State of emergency? Can’t visit or meet? COME ON PEOPLE! Meet your g.d. clients. I’ve been meeting with folks in their yards, 10 feet away, with masks throughout all of Covid, for the last year and half, trying to find out ‘what happened.’ We are seeing increased stabbings, domestic violence, overdoses, murders and assaults. It’s essential we go and meet IN PERSON. There is nothing comparable to face to face, eye to eye, human contact. Imagine being tossed in prison, in the hole, and not even being about to look your lawyer in the eye? It is waaaay too easy for us to lose our humanity now….through a screen. The virus has taken over the host here. You can push a button, nuke a country, sentence someone to 20 years, say goodbye and feel nothing. Those of us in this field, who are fierce advocates, need to recommit to continue to show up, and connect old school, whenever and wherever we can. Great show. Thank you Kelly & Erica, Dan & Mike. Let’s do this. No excuses.

  6. Mickey Wiles
    Mickey Wiles August 29, 2021 at 11:19 am | | Reply

    Thanks Erica, Dan and Mike for highlighting this issue. Quite honestly our systems and ability to move people forward in their lives after encountering legal issues prior to COVID were not good and needed improvement. COVID and our courts reaction to how to handle this pandemic has only exacerbated the problem.

    The only solution to restorative justice is a strong support system made available to those that are in crisis. This segment demonstrates that we have have moved from an inadequate support system to virtually no support system.

    We at Working Fields will continue to fight along side those caught up in this crisis and help them navigate through this bureaucracy. My hope is that everyone listening to this podcast finds a way that they can bring light to this. I for one, will be posting this to our website and social media platforms.

    Thank you
    Mickey Wiles, CEO & Founder
    Working Fields

  7. Rosanna Chase
    Rosanna Chase August 31, 2021 at 6:37 am | | Reply

    Thank you for this important reporting. Video court makes a mockery of the system and further dehumanizes the defendants. Well done for bringing light to what is happening.

  8. Dawn Matthews
    Dawn Matthews August 31, 2021 at 7:20 pm | | Reply

    Erica, thank you for this. It’s hard to capture in a few sentences what is so difficult about video in the courtroom replacing human interactions, but your piece really gets to the heart of it.

  9. Susan Clark
    Susan Clark September 1, 2021 at 7:55 pm | | Reply

    Wow! Another very powerful show. Thank you, Erica, for shedding light on important things we need to know with this enormously effective use of audio.

  10. Laura Wilson
    Laura Wilson September 5, 2021 at 3:56 pm | | Reply

    Remote court is unacceptable for jury trials and sketchy to say the least, for bail hearings.
    And for other proceedings, it has its challenges and downsides. But as a criminal defense atty here in Vermont, and somewhat to my surprise, I’ve learned that video appearance can also be a great boon, with definite advantages for many defendants and litigants. I do think it important to remember what some of those hellish in-person arraignment/status conference days could be like–with total chaos unfolding in the hallways, defendants stuck there for hours waiting, and defense attorneys running in a thousand directions between clients and the demands of judges. I’d rather not romanticize or gloss over the issues endemic to that model. Remote appearance is no panacea, but in certain limited contexts, it has the potential to relieve the incredible strain that’s been bearing down on us for years. Something to consider. LW

  11. Lynn Rollins
    Lynn Rollins September 17, 2021 at 9:42 am | | Reply

    As a Safeline Advocate, I see victims are not being served well either! We see on a weekly basis, the victims are not heard (literally), and are not getting true justice. Most victims are scared and unsure of the process and losing that one on one with them, they feel unsupported.

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