COURT WATCH: Insufficient Filing of Supplemental Report Almost Leads to Delayed Hearing, Frustrating Defense and Judge

LOS ANGELES- CA, MARCH 2: Los Angeles Superior Court Stanley Mosk Courthouse March 2, 2004 in Los Angeles Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images) *** Local Caption ***

By Vy Tran

LOS ANGELES, CA — Judge Laura Weis-Birnstein decided to take matters into her own hands late last week here in Los Angeles County Superior Court after learning of an accused’s potential fate of a delayed court appearance because of a tardy supplemental report filing.

The accused’s father appeared in court to give the most recent report he had, but this document also lacked a proper date, and was insufficient for the accused to be brought to court in a timely manner.

The accused is currently charged with two felonies, for shooting at an inhabited dwelling and criminal threats. What started as an issue of the accused not finishing his classes for an assigned program three years ago escalated into a more pressing matter with the probation office.

“But is there something from probation?” Deputy Public Defender Felicia Mobley inquired. “Because I want to argue for (the accused.”

“Well, let’s talk to his P.O. (probation officer). Let’s call the P.O. and see,” the judge replied. “I have this weird report, and this one has no date.”

“I have his P.O.’s name and number,” the accused’s father said. “I tried to call but she never returned the calls.”

After the clerk commented that this probation report appeared to be expired, the father exasperatedly added, “I think this is wrong, I think (the officer) thought it was someone else’s.”

Judge Weis-Birnstein sifted through files at the bench, asking, “So the ammunition was found where? I haven’t seen this report.” The father continued to stand before the judge as she grew further perplexed, noting. “Who submitted?” after turning to the clerk.

“We were told that probation sent it to the LAX court, but it’s not here on file,” the clerk explained to the court. “They said it was Feb. 13 when it was submitted? It hasn’t found its way here.”

The father claimed that this ammunition was actually found under his desk, while Judge Weis-Birnstein countered the dubious report claimed it was found in a drawer in the accused’s residence.

After acquiring the phone number from the accused’s probation officer, Judge Weis-Birnstein contacted a detective, who said LAPD gang enforcement officers conducted a compliance check at the accused’s residence knowing of his gang affiliations. They said they discovered 50 rounds of shotgun shells. It was revealed the ammunition was found in two boxes in the dining room.

“I need a report and a body warrant on how it’s discovered and recovered,” Judge Weis-Birnstein requested. After receiving confirmation that an email of photographic evidence will be sent, DPD Felicia Mobley sighed with relief.

“The very least I can do is to help his father and get him (the accused) out of there,” DPD Mobley said. “They declared for him to have no bail, and if we didn’t have the report, he would be stuck in the court line.

“She (Judge Laura Weis-Birnstein) is the type of judge who gets everything sorted out for the sake of the defendants. Sometimes probation does lie, and all she wants to do is to find out the truth.”

About The Author

Vy Tran is a 4th-year student at UCLA pursuing a B.A. in Political Science--Comparative Politics and a planned minor in Professional Writing. Her academic interests include political theory, creative writing, copyediting, entertainment law, and criminal psychology. She has a passion for the analytical essay form, delving deep into correlational and description research for various topics, such as constituency psychology, East-Asian foreign relations, and narrative theory within transformative literature. When not advocating for awareness against the American carceral state, Vy constantly navigates the Internet for the next wave of pop culture trends and resurgences. That, or she opens a blank Google doc to start writing a new romance fiction on a whim, with an açaí bowl by her side.

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