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ACLU of Michigan takes up causes of those jailed because they can't pay fines [View All]

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marmar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-05-11 06:47 AM
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ACLU of Michigan takes up causes of those jailed because they can't pay fines
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from the Detroit Free Press:



Kyle Dewitt says the last thing he expected when he went fishing in Ionia County in May was to wind up in jail.

But that's what happened after Ionia District Judge Raymond Voet sentenced the unemployed 19-year-old from Ionia on Tuesday to three days in jail because he said he couldn't afford a $215 ticket for catching a smallmouth bass out of season.

Dewitt is one of five Michigan residents whom the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan is holding up as victims of pay or stay -- the practice of some judges to lock up misdemeanor defendants who can't afford to pay their fines.

"Long thought to be a relic of the 19th Century, debtors' prisons are still alive and well in Michigan," state ACLU Director Kary Moss said Thursday in announcing that it had intervened on behalf of Dewitt and the others to challenge their court sentences. .............(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.freep.com/article/20110805/NEWS06/108050371/... |topnews|text|FRONTPAGE



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