A civil rights victory
Original post made by marathon man, Atherton: other, on Jan 13, 2010
We owe him a debt of gratitude. The victory he won yesterday will no doubt make the Atherton Police Department a little less eager to, and a little less cavalier about, trampling upon the civil rights of others.
This remarkable man with a boyish if not angelic presence yet steely resolve took on the combined forces of the San Mateo County District Attorney and the Atherton Police Department and prevailed.
About a year and a half ago this man dialed 911 to seek the intervention of the Police in a personal matter. In response to this young man's plea for help, he was arrested on charges conjured up by the responding officers. He was jailed and he was kept out of his home without so much as the ability to return home for his toiletries or spare clothes.
This man who paid for and who was deserving of the protection of the Atherton Police Department, found himself to be not protected but to be violated by those sworn to protect and serve.
Through hundreds of hours of research, through the expenditure of untold thousands of dollars on attorneys and expert witnesses and with a little bit of moral support from his friends, this man went to court yesterday and had a judge of the Superior Court rule that the Atherton Police Department did not have a reasonable basis to arrest him and charge him with a crime in the first place.
As a result of the judge's ruling, this man has been able to accomplish what is nearly impossible. He has erased a stain on his record that was written with indelible ink.
More importantly, and even more impressively, this man has held those who are charged with enforcing the law to be accountable for obeying the law.
In addition to granting this man's petition, the Judge censured the Atherton Police Departmet.
The Atherton Police Department owes this man a long overdue apology as does the San Mateo County District Attorney for opposing his petition to clear his record.