Judah Hargrove

by Judah Hargrove

One of the most fascinating things about a grassroot movement,or group activity,generally, is through its cooridinated action the inviolable phrase “We The People” expressly stated in the preamble of the U.S. Constitution resounds ever so loudly when any public servant that the people permit to hold office forgets the source of their authority.It is my understanding that the citizens of this country retain their power to be free from any form of tyranny, any abuse of power or subjeted to any form of enslavement.By our very nature we are born free to pursue our dreams and to experience our deepest desires as human thinking beings. Our inborn rights cannot be intefered with by our government in any way so long as our conduct does not run afoul of the law.Flat out !
I would like to share an excerpt of a chapter of my book with anyone interested entitled:”The Diabolical Effect Of Spiegal’s Habeas Order”. By taking this step I aim to show the manner of how I was treated after the late federal Jewish judge’s order came into play. The following exchange and events follow: One evening my case manager Mrs. Martinez Cooper came to my cell door and told me to get dressed that my attorney had set up a teleconference call and needed to speak with me immediately.I’ll never forget how excited I was while jumping out of bed.Sensing the urgency in the manner of how she spoke I dressed quickly. The exchange between me and Ms.Szudy is burned indeliably in my memory.”Hello,Judah!” My attorney stated excitedly.”Yes, how are you doing, Ms.Szudy ?”I replied anxious to know her purpose for arranging the teleconference.”I’m fine.Thank you for asking.Well I will have you to know that the federal district court granted your petition for writ of habeas corpus.” My heart rate began to rise. I was very excited. I just knew I was one step away from going home. “So am I going to be released?” I was uncertain of how the habeas corpus procedure worked at the time.”No not exactly.But you will be returning to the Hamilton County Court Of Common Pleas .Yes, the Hamilton County Sheriff will take you before Judge Dinklelacker so that he can resentence you for the criminal offense of byrglary.Aren’t you happy?” I was actually confused.And I had a hunch that something was amiss.Something smelled fishy.But,again, I did not fully comprehend the inner workings of habeas corpus procedure.It was unfamiliar territory.”How am I being resentenced for burglary? The jury found me guilty of aggravated burglary. And who found me guilty of burglary? I never pled guilty to that offense or admitted burglarizing nothing!” I felt my adrenaline rising. I suppose I had a natural instinct, or sense , that something was seriously wrong without knowing exactly what.”Didn’t you read the petition I filed on your behalf? I recommended, as did Christa Hohmann and the other attorneys at my office ,who handled your case over the years , for you to be resentenced to the lesser-included offense,burglary,if Judge Spiegal agreed that your conviction and sentence of aggravated burglary was based on insufficient evidence- which he agreed…

…So having found that your sentence and conviction of aggravated burglary was based on insufficient evidence he has ordered you to,ultimately, be resentenced to burglary, the lesser-included offense of aggravated burblary.His order will push your eligibility to obtain parole up alot sooner.In other words my recommendation and his order will work to reduce the maximum time you could potentially serve in prison, if the Ohio Adult Parole Board denies you parole, to 2011 versus 2020,a ten (10) year time difference.” I totally did not understand how my parole eligibility had any relevance to my right to obtain a new trial or a second opportunity to regain my freedom. Admittedly, my mindset at the time was misguided in terms of my understanding of the law. For instance, I had not the slightest clue of what double jeopardy was or its three (3) different forms. Had I been armed with that knowledge I would have readily seen through the little scheme Ms.Szudy and her office hatched on my fledgling mind along with the federal judge. A question had come to mind as I listened to her explain the substance of the federal judges order. “Can a federal judge order me to be resentenced in the way that you recommended and Judge Spiegal ordered after finding the evidence to be insufficent to sustain my conviction and sentence for aggravated burglary ?” There was a slight pause. “Most certainly.The federal court has vast discretionary powers to grant a petitioner all types of equitable relief in a case like yours.So ,again, in about two (2) weeks or so you’ll be transported from the institution that your presently at by the Hamilton County Sheriff who will take you before Judge Dinklelacker to be resentenced. Then once your resentenced you will eventually be transported back to Southern Ohio Correctional Facility and be scheduled for an expedited parole hearing to determine your chances of being released on parole.So stay out of trouble,okay.Good luck and ,again, congratulations! Have a nice day.Goodbye.” And good riddance I can even imagine her saying evilly under her breath as she congratualated herself for lulling me to sleep. But karma repays in full measure. Now Ms.Szudy and the countless other public servants who hoodwinked me are dealing with a much more formidable opponent. Touche!
After the conversation between me and Ms.Szudy concluded I returned to my cell in segregation and I never forget how drained I felt mentally. My mind raced searching for answers to so many unanswered questions.I felt so powerless and abandoned. It was as though something higher than me was desperately confirming my gut feeling, my instinct, that something was seriously wrong. After pacing the small cell about what seemed like a thousand laps, because my ankles began to tighten , I finally laid down on my rack to take a nap. I’ll never forget the dream I had of what I saw and remeber hearing. It was as though I had some out of body experience. It was so surreal. The ceaseless rambling of my brain caused me to drift off quickly into a deep sleep.There seemed to be a voice that I could hear very clearly but I have no memory of any appearance.I could not distinguish whether the voice was a female’s or male’s, though it sounded deep, rich and ancient.I’ll try to recapture it here.The voice I remembered called out to me three (3) times, pronouncing my name hebraically: “Yehuda…Yehuda…Yehuda.It felt as though I looked around but all I could see was space and lush greenery surrounding me.When the voice went silent all that could be heard was the cacophony of chirping birds that had exotic plumages and the echoes of crickets hidden away within the thickets of grass.These were no ordinary birds nor was the scenery contemporary but everthing appeared of a time immemorial…

…After the teleconference ended I returned to my cell in segregation and I remember feeling mentally drained. My mind raced searching for answers to so many questions. I felt so powerless and abandoned. It was as though something higher than me was desperately confirming my gut feeling, my instinct, that something was seriously wrong. After pacing the cell about a thousand short laps it seemed, because my ankles began to tighten,I finally laid down on my rack to take a nap. I’ll never forget the dream I had. It seemed like some sort of out of body experience when I look back and think about it. It was so surreal. The ceaseless rambling of my brain caused me to drift off quickly into a deep sleep.There seemedd to be a narrator’s voice tha I could hear very clearly but have no memory of any appearance. I could not distinguish whether the voice was a female’s or male’s, though it sounded deep and very rich and ancient. I’ll try to recapture it here.The voice I remembered called out to me three times, pronouncing my name hebraically: “Yehuda… Yehuda…Yehuda.It felt as though I looked around but all I could see was space and lush greenery surrounding me.When the voice went silent all that could be heard was the cacophany of chirping birds that had exotic plumages and the echoes of crickets hidden away within the thickets of grass.These were no ordinary birds nor was the scenery contemporary but everything appeared of a time immemorial. “Who are you?” I asked trembling with fear. My question was met with no response…

…”Please allow me to share an interesting part of history with you that your captors believe is lost and beyond discovery. See as I take you through this journey to a place long gone.” The voice continued to speak.Destroyed by war,pillage and carnage the land and its inhabitants are left defenseless by invaders from the frigid North.The voice began to intimate to another voice. The foreign language the voice imitated sounded like a guttural german type of speech.I didn’t know for certain. But somehow I could understand perhaps due to the voice speaking directly to me. “Be obedient to our will and we will do you no harm.” It seemed with lightning speed the image of the voice the invisible voice imitated appeared, revealing a European imperilialist general bellowing commands as his troops invaded the land of teh indigenous people.I believe the land and its inhabitants were of the land of Ancient Israel, a culture I knew to be relative to me based on my upbringing and world history.I could readily see my ancestor’s flag bearing the colors red,gold,black and green with the Lion Of Judah weilding its staff and a gold crown with the Star Of David ensconced in gold and silver around its mane…

…But something was seriously wrong with the inhabitants’ appearances.They were clearly scared,shivering in fear. They were each manacled and bound one to another in large grous, prostrated naked before the commanding general. They were waiting to be taken to the dark, airless pit of the ship’s bilge.”Kazhaat ingress!…Kazhaat ingress…!” The invisible voice mystically quickened my mind enabling me to understand the foreign tongue in which the brusque, cold-hearted general screamed out:” Stand up now and aboard!…Stand uppp nowww and enterrr!” his whip snapped loudly coming within inches of the face of one of the native’s who was painfully hobbling with each step with one group entering the dark dreary hull of ‘Desire’, the first American slave ship.”Your pride we will break ,and your history we shall erase!” General Ashkenazi boomed.That was the name revealed by the foreign german black letters stitched across the patch on the front of the general’s uniform.The Elders of the Diaspora, who were all well versed in many tongues translated Ashenazi’s words into my ancestor’s, who I believe were my ancestor’s, ears…

…They each began to weep and their knees
began to shake. Their backs began to buckle as they each strained to pray to Yahweh, our creator,despite their hands being tightly binded.”Your prayers are in vain…your prayers are to no avail! Mooove! and move nowww!”The general uttered in pure malice. The invisible then directed my vision to an aerial view of the entire land. Smoke rose in the air. Pleading cries could be heard in the distance.Billows of smoke rose in the air mixed with fire that submerged the land’s infrastructure.Its temples ,its schools and universities,its gymnasiums,its libraries,its many palaces, its hospitals,the surrounding communities,its livestock and farmlands,its holy landmarks,burned before the eyes of my ancestors as they were being herded away to foreign lands both far and near.The errie crackling noise caused by the flames consumed what once was a thriving civilization,resonating within my and my ancestor’s heartzone.They yearned, as did I, deeply within our sad souls as they witnessed, and I relived, the atrocity they suffered.”Raze it!…Raze it!…Raze this place that claims itself to be Zion whose Creator supposedly resides in its midst to the ground and let’s see if He can save you from our wrath and prevent us from removinf your borders, and stop us from erasing your existence as a people…haha …haha….

“…General Ashkenazi began laughing amused by his blasphemous statements against Yahweh.
Beads of sweat trickled down my forehead as I laid on the hard steel frame that served as my bed that could fairly be described as a bedpan,literally. The prison cell was hot and irritably humid and had been so even before sunrise which,I suppose, is typical in the month of July. Ihad awoke from the dream feeling a deep sense of anger while sweating heavily.Adrenaline rose through my core.What was the meaning and the purpose of the dream ?How was it relevant to what lied ahead in terms of my current situation?
About a week after speaking with Ms.Szudy Judge Dinklelacker issued a warrant for me to be remanded to the Hamilton County Court Of Common Pleas pursuant to Judge Spiegal’s habeas order. I was escorted from segregation to the prison’s transport room where incoming and outgoing prisoners are stripped out and subjected to a cavity search.The transport room, or intake as its commonly called, is where prisoners are either given prison garb (“state blues”) if their new arrivals or an orange jumpsuit with S.O.C.F. (Southern Ohio Correctional Facility) pressed in large black capital letters on the back of the shirt and down the sides of the pants if their going to court or…

…going out on a medical roundtrip.I’ll never forget the dread I felt internally and the humiliation as the correctional officer made me squat down as he focused the flashlight on my anal cavity. He stated he had to make sure I did not have any contraband kiestered in my anus. But in my opinion such a procedure has been designed to dehumanize, demean and disesteem a humanbeing while giving another a person a false sense of empowerment.I believe alot of the men who have undergone that type of experience over a period of time become effeminized especially if their young and inexperienced, or unaware of self, making them susceptible to homosexuality. Well I say this because such an invasion of one’s person could potentially weaken their nerve or weaken them mentally. I can say this with a degree of qualificaton due to my own personal experience of having felt a sense of powerlessness yet remaining strong through it all. I could how imagine how a women feels when she is being raped or sodomized bound in chains by a vicious sex crazed rapists. As I was hobbling along as a result of my feet and hands being shackled to the awaiting van to be transported, I’ll never forget the…

… feeling like a sheep being led to the slaughter .Throughout the whole duration of the trip my mind continued to replay the brief conversation I had with Ms. Szudy. For some unknown reason I was reflecting on her responses to my questions. It is said that the devil is in the details. So, perhaps , the questions that weighed most heavily on my mind could be answered somehow by pondering her responses. Perhaps I would be able to fill in the void by focusing on every aspect of our exchange, I thought.”Am I going to be released, Ms.Szudy?” No,not exactl. You’ll be returning to court to be resentenced for burglary.” “But I don’t understand the jury found me guilty of aggravated burgalry. I never pled guilty to nothing! Can a federal judge order me to be resentenced in the way that your office recommended ?” “most certainly.”
The day of my resentencing hearing was August 19, 2005. That day I witnessed Judge Dinklelacker, Brian Goodyear, the assisant Hamilton County Prosecutor, and my attorney William Welsh each concertedly disregard my former roomate Demetrius Pleasure’s (who referenced as Demetrius Gray in my indictment) request for me to be relased immediately.Mr. Pleasures was the leaseholder of the apartment I was accused of burglarizing. Why was his interest as a private citizen not being respected or regarded by the officers of the court…

…of law confuses me even today. After all he was the person the assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor, Heather Russel, claimed desired for me to be prosecuted for the criminal offense of aggravated burglary ay my jury trial ten years prior though he himself never made one appearance throughout the entire pretrial and trial proceedings to corroborate that assumption. As I stated Mr. Pleasures asked Judge Dinklelacker to release me.He informed the resentencing judge that I was not a burglar ,and that on April 4, 1996 I actually lived at the residence at the time of the alleged intrusion. The critical point that he made afterwards on the trial record always stuck out in the forefront of my mind years later proving my theory that the resentencing hearing was a sham legal proceeding barred by Ohio law: ” Your Honor, if I never made any court appearance before the grand jury or at any stage of the criminal proceedings besides this one -in Judah’s behalf – then how was he prosecuted and convicted of aggravated burglary ? Please help me to understand that!” The trial judge remained silent. Demetrius continued to speak. “Well anyhow this proceeding is our last ditch effort to gain his exoneration. This young man has done more than enough time and, as I stated earlier, this hearing serves as Judah’s only opportunity to regain his freedom. So, please, Your Honor , I ask that you grant my wish and release him.Thank you.” Judge Dinklelacker was rubbing his forehead as Demetrius…

…spoke deep in thought. Perhaps weighing his options. His response proved to be very cagey.”I thank you, Mr. Pleasures for coming forth in Mr. Hargrove’s behalf. But,unfortunately, it is not that simple. I have here before me a habeas order handed down from the federal district court, and though I personally disagree with it entirely, -because I think the defendant’s conviction is a good conviction and that the assistant prosecutor met her burden of proof ,proving his guilt of aggravated burglary beyond a reasonable doubt- I nevertheless am bound by law to carry it out. In other words, Mr. Pleasures, my hands are tied. So, therefore, I must resentence the defendant for the criminal offense of burglary. But,again, I thank you as does the Hamilton County Prosecutor, Joseph Deters, for coming forth in efforts to assist the defendant.” I was confused. I did not understand what the big deal was with the judge and state prosecutor in honoring Demetrius’s request. Why each refused to act according to his wish. Who then was the victim, the state of Ohio solely ? But I thought a state prosecutor, acting as a victim’s representative, advocated the interest of the injured private party, who being the victim of some form of unlawful conduct, would assist the state prosecutor by corroborating the state’s case against some violater of the law? The unexpected appearance of my former roommate must have thrown a curveball in the succession of events premeditatively planned out by the federal judge, the Ohio Attorney General, the Office of the Hamilton County Prosecutor, officers of the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas and other officers of the court employed by the state of Ohio.” The matter before the court will be continued until I figure out a reasonable sentence to impose on the burglary.I’ll be sure to get with your attorney , get you down here and get you sentenced.” I remember shaking my head in disbelief that my attorney was literally saying nothing in my defense!” Something inside of me made me speak out in desperation.”Your Honor, this is not a burglary anything but that!”Though ,in hindsight, my response was unintelligible I nevertheless felt the need to say something in my defense. “Please consider the path that you are taking,sir !” I am innocent dammit I wanted to scream out so desperately. Hell, consider the leaseholder’s interest! His words. Tears began to well up in my eyes as I restrained my urge to curse the rogue judge,prosecutor and my attorney…

…My words fell on death ears. Judge Dinklelacker continued to speak as though I had said nothing.”This proceeding is adjourned.Again, I’ll get with your attorney and let him know and then we’ll get ya’ down here and get ya’ resentenced. Alrighty…alriggght! This court is adjourned.” Judge Dinklelacker lightly tapped his gavel on a circular wooden platform.I continued shaking my head in disbelief feeling powerless to protest the judge’s clear abuse of authority.I knew something was very wrong regarding the federal order and the resentencing hearing. Something underhanded about it all but did not know how to appropiately raise an objection. It is worth noting later I learned through my study of Ohio jurisprudence that a prosecuting attorney of any county within a state ,or a district attorney working on behalf of the federal government, has certain duites owed to a criminal defendant.As a general rule, the Office of the Hamilton County Prosecutor was obligated by law to see to it that I received protection under the law of Ohio. That I received a fair trial following the federal habeas cropus proceedings. His duty in this respect was subordinate, if at all , to that of Judge Dinklelacker’s. Though Mr. Deter’s office was under no legal duty to assist in my defense per se had I received a new trial on the lesser included offense he,nevertheless, was not permitted to conceal,or supress, evidence. The prosecutor’s office was obligated to object to the fictitious habeas order tailored by the federal judge. Had that office not acted underhandedly along with other officer’s of the court I would have been set free. Though it cannot be presumed that a prosecutor’s decision to prosecute has been invidious or in bad-faith, Mr. Deter’s decision to prosecute me in spite of my former roommate’s wishes …

…fully aware that Dinklelacker lacked subject-matter jurisdiction over the proceedings entirely-could fairly be viewed as both invidious and in bad-faith.
My whole body began to shake involuntarily the morning I was asleep in the Hamilton County Justice Center,the local county jail, by a loud beeping noise resounding through the intercom set within the wall of the jail cell a couple weeks after the resentencing hearing. “Hargrove!…Hargrove!…Hargrove!…” The ruddy sheriff croaked in a rural drawl. “What is it.” I responded in suspense trying to clear my head. “Your riding out.” The very minute the deputy sheriff said those words my knees began to shake and my back buckled as I stood next to the intercom. My breathing had become strained. I couldn’t stand up any longer. I had to sit on my bed. Something wasn’t right. Though my understanding of the law at the time was undeveloped I knew definitely that I couldn’t be herded off to prison without being sentenced in open court and being permitted to speak in my own behalf before the new sentence was imposed. And not to mention the judge had to inform me of my constitutional right to directly appeal the new sentence. Heck that was the whole reason I opted for a trial by jury ten years prior. Again, I never admitted being guilty of anything! So how could a federal judge acting in the capacity of a habeas corpus judge determine my fate and find me guilty himself, or allow a state judge to do so, I wondered.I could hear the officer breathing on the intercom. I had to explain this to him. There had to be some sort of misunderstanding.”No,no,sir, there must be some sort of mistake.I haven’t been sentenced by the judge yet!” I could hear the deputy sheriff breathing heavily on the other end. He answered coldly:”You’ve been resentenced now prepare yourself to go back to prison. Do I make myself clear?” I said nothing as my mind raced and my heart beat uncontrollably.Inside I felt so vulnerable,so scared,so confused. Where was my attorney? How was this happening? Why was my attorney doing nothing to prevent this violation of my civil rights? I did have rights didn’t I, I thought to myself.Isn’t this kidnapping? The days of white men lording power over men and women of color , converting us into chattled property had long passed had it not?…

…The meaning of the painful dream that I had when I was imprisoned at Southern Ohio Correctional Facility (“Lucasville”) weeks prior, that I shared with you, involving my ancestors being dispossessed of our customs our identity and our land suddenly had become apparent to me. Yes, I being a remnant of them would experience what they each felt after being scattered all throughout the world put to forced labor being treated like part and parcel ,an inanimate object or like a mere wild creature, the captured property of the descendants of Ashkenazi ,Javan and Togamor and many,many others from the frigid North to be bought ,sold and slaughtered at their will in the twenty-first century. My limbs were tightly binded as I hobbled through the corridors of the local county jail in the wee hours of the dawning morning with the other broken souls, heading into the airless, dark dreary hull of “Blue Bird”-the transporting prison bus.The prayer I recited as I struggled to walk and climb each step of the bus I remember very clearly:

“O Yahweh, by your name save
me .By your strength defend my
cause. O Elohim,hear my prayer
.Listen to the words of my mouth
Strangers have risen against me.
They do not keep you before them.
Your justice will not sleep forever.
Avenge me! Your humble servant,
Yehuda Yisrael… Amen.

DOC #A714226

Categories: Judah Hargrove

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