Judge Dismisses No Camping Case When Man Finds Apartment

By Hannah Adams

SANTA BARBARA, CA – Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge Dean Dadona dismissed a charge against a man here last week when the accused simply found an apartment.

About one year ago, the man—unidentified because he wasn’t charged with a felony—was arrested for unlawful camping in a public area. After a period of hospital supervision, he was given the opportunity to relocate to an apartment unit off of Garden Street.

And now, the man admits he has been enjoying his life in his new abode, quipping, “It’s so awesome to take a shower and shave every day.”

Judge Dadona took this opportunity to thank the staff responsible for overseeing the accused’s well-being, including Jon Masuda, Santa Barbara County’s Homeless Services Team Supervisor, as well as Masuda’s staff and the staff at Good Samaritan Shelter.

Following her expressions of gratitude, Judge Dadona commended the accused for keeping his end of the bargain by cooperating with the Good Samaritan Shelter and Masuda’s team. Through consistently attending doctor’s appointments and taking prescribed medication, he proved that he had abided by the terms of his supervised period, the judge noted.

In light of the man’s model behavior, Judge Dadona fulfilled a promise that she had made at the start of his supervision: that if the homeless man worked with the community, she would dismiss one of his cases.

Judge Dadona offered an additional award to the man: his choice of an item from the “gold star basket.” Filled with household goods such as dishes and silverware, the gold star basket is meant to reward those who have returned to the restorative court with a good record.

At an earlier review date, the man had taken two bowls from the gold star box. Intending to own a full set, he left court on Friday with two more bowls to add to his collection.

He is set to appear before the court for another review hearing Oct. 7.

About The Author

Hannah is a first-year undergraduate student at University of California, Santa Barbara. She is majoring in English and currently is involved with two campus newspapers. She is anticipating on graduating early and attending law school. She hopes to continue her passion for writing in a law-related career.

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