Despite Court Order Violations, Judge Modifies Restrictive House Arrest Orders in Child Endangerment Case

By Alex Jimenez

OAKLAND, CA- After an Alameda woman was placed under house arrest here this week in Alameda County Superior Court for allegedly beating a two-year-old child, and violated a related court order on six occasions, the judge decided to modify the terms instead of sending her to jail.

Deatras Phillips is being charged with willful cruelty to a child and corporal injury to a child.

“What’s going on with all these house arrest violations, let me backup, this was a really serious situation,” said Judge Morris Jacobson. He explained how it took a significant amount of time thinking about whether he should keep Phillips in custody or not.

Several of Phillips’ family members came to court vouching on her behalf, ensuring that Phillips would have access to the children and was placed under house arrest instead. A revocation request was issued after Phillips violated house arrest. However, it did not appear that any of the violations were related to child endangerment.

“Do I need to put her back into custody?” asked the judge, and while the audio for the defense attorney was a bit unclear it was implied that he suggested to lessen the restrictions or at least not remand Phillips into custody.

Judge Jacobson, however, was hesitant to accept the attorney’s suggestion, noting, “ Let me just make sure I am getting this correctly. I am looking at six separate violations and your response is I should loosen the restrictions? That doesn’t make sense to me.”

After some initial hesitation the judge did agree to modify the restrictions placed, allowing Phillips to go grocery shopping and to walk her dog. From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. every day for an hour and from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Phillips would be allowed to take care of any errands.

Deputy District Attorney Maryam Ahmad requested the revocation order be granted and outlined the severity of the previous charge, noting, “This is somebody that grabbed a two year old and when beating him up said no one is going to save you.”

Judge Jacobson decided to continue with the plan to modify the house arrest, his preference is to have a set time where she could go shopping or walk her dog instead of having to check in every time Phillips needed to go out.

Phillips is set to return to court in six weeks.

About The Author

Alex Jimenez is a 4th year politcal science major at the University of Calfornia, Berkeley. He has future aspirations to attend law school and is from Pleasanton, Ca.

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