You are very kind, and you are not monopolizing my time. This is what I'm here for. I'm about to step away from my computer for an hour or two. But please post your question to this reply and I'll be happy to answer as soon as I return.
I acted on several of the points you advised me. Amazingly, I made some good progress. (Probably because I sounded intelligent, as I used your terminology... Also, I've become a permanent fixture in court; I expect them to ask me for "rent" any time now...) I can't thank you enough for your wonderful advice.
Next, I would like to tackle the following items:
1. Expunging my criminal record-
Who do I present this request to? is it the County Attorney? those
are the guys who prosecuted me in the first place. Is it in the
format of a "Motion"?
2. Holding Wal-Mart accountable for claiming a fictitious check-
Since that fraudulent charge claimed a year of my life and
deemed me unemployable - am I entitled to monetary restitution?
do I need legal representation? (We already know that AZ lawyers
and I don't "play" well together...) Can I represent myself?
3. DSFCU - the Bank-
When I file my report to the AZ Dept. Of Financial Institutions re
depletion of the book proceeds - should I also include the fact
that they gave deceptive testimony in court about that mysterious
check? shouldn't they be accountable for the same violations as
Wal-Mart? (they probably wanted to shift the attention from the
"book-account" so they sent a V.P. to swear that "there was such
a check- but they can't find it"... the judge saw right through it and
had very harsh words for them.)
That's it. I thinks I did a good job "confusing" you... (I'm good at that)
On the expungement, this is a petition you make to the criminal court in which you were charged. It's Petition for Expungement. I'm going to look for a form for you to use. Since the charges were dismissed, this should a pretty easy thing to get. Getting the District Attorney's approval is necessary generally. I'll respond back with a more precise answer tomorrow.
On the malicious prosecution claim against Wal-Mart - I've litigated against Wal-Mart several times. They rarely settle and almost always put up a stiff fight. Will you be able to recover for not being able to find a job? This would be a very hard claim to prove. You would have to establish that you were looking for work, found someone who was interested in you and then turned you down specifically because of this false charge against you. While this would certainly be part of your claim, it would be very hard to recover any "future lost wages" because of it, as there are a lot of elements that would be very difficult to prove, and you would have to get the testimony of the employers who turned you down to support your claim. If you had a potential employer come in and say "I was going to hire you, I was going to pay you $90K a year (or what have you), and I did not hire you even though you were qualified because of the charge Wal-Mart falsely made against you." That is the only way you would get the lost wage damages. On the other hand, you can get unspecified damages that a jury awards for the flat out damage to your reputation. In that case, you will have to show from a third-party's perspective that this claim damaged your reputation. That probably means someone else will have to come into support that claim. However, if you did not have any witnesses, and only had your own testimony, you might convince a jury to give you something out of it. In short, the malicious prosecution claim is difficult to prove damages on, but not impossible. Again, you don't have to have a lawyer, but it is always better to have one.
DSFCU - definitely bring that up. There's absolutely no reason that they had to offer that you falsely cashed a check when this was not the case at all. They should have been the party that established that you were innocent, rather than supporting a false claim with false evidence. What was the reason that they made the mistake of thinking you were the one who wrote a hot check?
You wouldn't file the malicious prosecution claim against DSFCU because they did not actually press the claim. You could ask the district attorney to prosecute for perjury, if you can show that the testimony was an outright lie as opposed to some sort of excusable mistake on their part.
I'll write more later.
This exchange with you is like an education; not only does it encompass the legal system- but our (the people who don't own banks and large corprations) standing in society at large. I understand why that particular Wal-Mart acted that way... because they can. and because there are no consequences. They must've accused people in the past- all of whom were smarter than I was and didn't fight it. I stood on the side of "principal" when that ideal has become irrelevant in our daily life.
I was fortunate to have met you; otherwise I would be "fighting
windmills" for the rest of my life... I can't see myself going to court
without a lawyer (it's counter productive). And, if nothing else, I am practical.
I'll read your "narrative" again and decide. (You must be tired of hearing this- but your "legal lectures" are fascinating...)
I guess it's not a total loss; expunging the charge is important.
Well, Zachary, have you considered the LECTURE CIRCUIT?
It took awhile to absorb the wealth of information you've been disbursing free of charge... (taking into account that an education is so costly...)
I read and re-read these rulings wondering if I've been living on another planet... through my 32 years of life I've been self-promoting my image as someone who has a good- handle on life and insight into the human condition; in short, I'm totally ignorant of the most important segment of that life - the rule of law. Which unknowingly seems to rule every aspect of our existence.
Another revelation is that your quality of life is determined by "geography"...i.e. the state you live in dictates our "comings and goings"... I never imagined that the state of AZ is in the business of formulating the lives of its citizens...
At this juncture, I need to add a foot-note to explain my militant approach to everyone that attempts to "do me harm" of any kind.
(like Wal-Mart.) It's imprinted in my genes.... I was born in France- but my mother was a diplomat for the Israeli government at a time when women were not so "visible"... I was "fed" this doctrine of standing up for your rights from a very young age...
I am saying that to further explain, that now more than ever, I'd like to haul their collective a-- to court - even though the battle is doomed from its inception - for nothing more than to express my outrage - or I won't have any peace...
Finally, (I didn't realize I've opened the "flood-gate"), and this is my opinion, of course - but Walmart has been doing ALL their business (about 99%) with that anarchistic, lawless country, and seemed to overlook the fact that this is America... Obviously, in AZ, they don't have to worry about anything.
Thanks for your response. I really think the case against Wal-Mart is egregious.
How did it start, if you don't mind me asking? Why did they single you out to press a hot check charge against?
As I said, the thief targeted several walmarts,and the bank statements show the "purchases" as DEBIT charges. Someone at this particluar Walmart decided that it didn't have to be a "loss"... All they had to do was to create a receipt showing the same amount, with a check number, file a bad check complaint with the county attorney- and a summons was issued- hauling me into court like a common criminal... the irony of it all, no one expected me to fight back. In fact, I was asked many times why I didn't just pay it ($256.00 is not a monumental amount.) But, as we now know, I am not "programmed"to do that.
(I promise to keep it under a 1000 words from now on...)
This would definitely be a good malicious prosecution claim against Wal-Mart. You should go for it.
Thank you. If nothing else, I think the process will be "medicinal" and a healing unto itself; a kind of closure.
I'll prepare my questions - (I already have all the documents), and look for you again, tomorrow.
(Unless you decide you've had enough, and change your identity...)
I appreciate all your help!
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