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Judge Won't Lower $5M Bail For Jailed SF IT Admin 429

Posted by timothy
from the wait-for-asperger's-defense dept.
snydeq writes "San Francisco County Judge Charles Haines has denied Terry Childs' motion to reduce his $5 million bail, alluding to 'public security concerns,' according to Richard Shikman, who is representing Childs in court. The ruling comes in the wake of a recent decision to drop three of the four changes that have been levied against Childs, who has spent the past 14 months in jail. The fourth charge — that Childs violated a California statute regarding illegal denial of service for the San Francisco FiberWAN — has been called into question by those closely monitoring the case. As a point of comparison, the San Francisco Felony Bail Schedule lists a $1 million bail for the most serious crimes, such as sexual assault of a child, aggravated arson, or kidnapping for ransom. Prosecutors have argued that the bail is appropriate because, if released, Childs could cause damage to San Francisco's network."
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Judge Won't Lower $5M Bail For Jailed SF IT Admin

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  • too easy (Score:5, Funny)

    by drDugan (219551) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:19PM (#29279071) Homepage

    Childs could cause damage to San Francisco's network.

    But, but... think of the children

    • Re:too easy (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Shikaku (1129753) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:41PM (#29279259)

      Prosecutors have argued that the bail is appropriate because, if released, Childs could cause damage to San Francisco's network.

      Yeah, so can anyone who's competent with networking.

      Just admit that he was presumed guilty before a trial you incompetent fools. You all are making yourselves look more and more like idiots, and the Childs is laughing his ass off in jail.

      Oops shouldn't have said that out loud, I might be labeled a terrorist.

      • Re:too easy (Score:5, Funny)

        by compro01 (777531) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:44PM (#29279287)

        Yeah, so can anyone who's competent with networking.

        Or incompetent.

      • Re:too easy (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:46PM (#29279305)
        I'm pretty sure he isn't laughing his ass off while sitting in jail after 14 months. Although there's a good chance he will be once this is done, and he's won his lawsuit against the city and gotten the DA disbarred.
        • Re:too easy (Score:5, Insightful)

          by joaommp (685612) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:10PM (#29279519) Homepage Journal

          this is preposterous. basically they're condemning him for being arrogant while competent. he always stated that he was only refusing to hand out the passwords because he didn't trust the competence of the people that were still working there.

          what harm could he now do to the city network? he was fired, the password has already been disclosed to the mayor about a year ago... or have they forgotten to change the passwords?

          and if he did have backdoors, it's already time they had them fixed. if he uses them, then, yeah, he's provoking the wrath of law, but... 5 million?

          each year he spends on the jail probably means about 10 years he looses from his lifespan from physical and emotional distress. fsck the fscking judges and DAs.

          Robin Williams said it right:

          "You know, I heard scientists are now using lawyers instead of mice for experiments, for two reasons: one, scientists grow less attached to lawyers and two, there are somethings that even mice won't do."

          add "judges" to that, will you?

          • Re:too easy (Score:4, Insightful)

            by CAIMLAS (41445) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @11:51PM (#29281445) Homepage

            what harm could he now do to the city network? he was fired, the password has already been disclosed to the mayor about a year ago... or have they forgotten to change the passwords?

            Likely none, and they realize this. But they've imprisoned a man - a competent, intelligent man - for over a year now. They've ruined his ability to do what he evidently got a great deal of satisfaction from (noted due to his level of competency). They've smeared his good name, lied about him, and ruined his life.

            I suspect they're quite worried about him getting out. On the outside, he'd be able to sue the life out of them and/or the city - and if the city gets sued, then those who invoked the lawsuit will face scrutiny.

            Oh yeah, and again, the "smart, competent" bit. What was it about the mental stability of IT workers, nurses, and postal workers and our propensity to go off the deep and which is so wantonly stereotyped in the media? Oh, right. They're probably at least a little concerned that the guy would kill them all in their sleep. I don't doubt he's thought about it, wistfully (there's likely not much else for him to do).

      • Re:too easy (Score:5, Insightful)

        by catmistake (814204) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:06PM (#29279469) Journal
        Punishment prior to conviction has become all too common, it's only one tactic in an unscroupulous prosecutor's bag of tricks. They try to make you look guilty by keeping you in jail before trail. They will duplicitously paint you as a flight risk even if you've never been beyond 20 miles from the courthouse. The judge will almost always do as the prosecutor recommends. It's said a sitting federal judge with full contempt powers is the most powerful position in government. But I think a local municiple prosecutor is pretty damn powerful too, considering his sway over local judges before a jury returns a verdict.
      • Re:too easy (Score:5, Funny)

        by bdenton42 (1313735) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:15PM (#29279567)

        Just admit that he was presumed guilty before a trial you incompetent fools. You all are making yourselves look more and more like idiots, and the Childs is laughing his ass off in jail.

        They may just be keeping him in long enough for all of his certs to expire.

    • Re:too easy (Score:5, Insightful)

      by noc007 (633443) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:25PM (#29279661)

      Prosecutors have argued that the bail is appropriate because, if released, Childs could cause damage to San Francisco's network.

      This oddly sounds like crap that brought up in Kevin Mitnick's trial.

      My guess is the DA knows he's fscked and is grasping at straws. I wouldn't be surprised once the last charge is dropped, Childs counter sues for being charged, arrested, and in jail.

  • Only if... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by evil_aar0n (1001515) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:20PM (#29279083)

    He's a danger to their network only if no one has yet changed the passwords on the routers and other equipment.

    • Re:Only if... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Zen Hash (1619759) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:03PM (#29279447)

      "The defendant's withholding the passwords caused DTIS to be denied administrative access to the FiberWAN, which constituted a denial of computer services," Judge McCarthy wrote.

      The defending not giving up the administrative passwords for his former employer's network didn't cause anyone to be denied administrative access. Their own incompetence and lack of planning were responsible for that.

      This whole thing is ridiculous, yet it's still not over... The people who need to be held accountable are the managers responsible for allowing such a major fuck-up to occur with something as critical as they claim.

    • Re:Only if... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by HangingChad (677530) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:03PM (#29279453) Homepage

      He's a danger to their network only if no one has yet changed the passwords...

      No kidding. Are those routers and servers just running on on the same settings they were set on 14 months ago? No one has run updates? Changed any settings? Heck, in a lot of places half that equipment would have been replaced in a year. Any reasonably competent admins could have secured that network before now. Most routers have a way of resetting the root password, even if that means taking them off-line a few at a time and reprogramming them.

      This is insane. 14 months in jail. Come on San Francisco, time to extract your head out of your boyfriend's ass.

      Hopefully his lawyers can appeal to a judge with clue before this stupidity goes any further.

  • Witchcraft (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pem (1013437) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:20PM (#29279085)
    Anybody who knows about computers has to be kept away from them, else they might cast spells on the rest of us.
    • Re:Witchcraft (Score:5, Insightful)

      by smartr (1035324) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:31PM (#29279179)
      Why pay attention to the 6th and 8th amendments of the Constitution when there are witches? No one is safe from their power!!!
  • by cwmendel (612358) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:21PM (#29279093)
    maybe he should get his money's worth and go sexually assault five children then...
    • Re:take that SF (Score:5, Interesting)

      by phantomfive (622387) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:43PM (#29279273) Journal
      I can kind of understand why they would set the bail so high if they don't want him out of prison during the trial, because he probably has more money than the average murderer or rapist, and could actually afford a $1 million bail. On the other hand, I don't understand why they don't want him out of prison during the trial. Especially since the article mentions he's already served more time than his eventual sentence will be, even if he's found guilty.

      If I were Mr Childs, at this point my thoughts would be less on vandalizing the network and more on vandalizing the nose of the prosecuting attorney who convinced the judge that there was some sort of danger to the network if I was released.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        or, more importantly, since the prosecution doesn't want him out of jail during the trial, and the judge clearly subscribes to that view, why doesn't he just drop the whole charade of offering him bail that he'll never be able to meet?

  • No confidence (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AlHunt (982887) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:21PM (#29279097) Homepage Journal

    > Prosecutors have argued that the bail is appropriate because, if released, Childs could cause damage to San Francisco's network.

    It sounds like they have zero confidence in whoever is now in charge of securing their network.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      It sounds to me more like they're afraid he's left one or more back doors into the system.
    • by Lumpy (12016) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:53PM (#29279387) Homepage

      It's in safe hands. The city hired The Geek Squad.

    • It sounds like they have zero confidence in whoever is now in charge of securing their network.

      Well, the prosecutors work for the City and County of San Francisco, too; certainly, its not that uncommon for people on the business side of an operation to have low confidence in their own IT staff.

  • Sick of this (Score:4, Insightful)

    by nickdwaters (1452675) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:25PM (#29279119)
    The incompetence of the legal system has no lower bound.
  • by phantomfive (622387) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:32PM (#29279185) Journal
    I don't think the judge understands the nature of network security, which is understandable since he isn't an IT guy......but no doubt the prosecuting attorney was pushing to distort the issue to make him look as dangerous as possible. What if he is not guilty, are they still going to keep him in jail because he might be dangerous? Furthermore, if he DOES damage the network, can't they just charge him for that crime at that time? It's not like he can cause irreparable damage, as murdering someone might.

    One thing I don't understand is why this guy doesn't exercise his right to a speedy trial. He's already been punished enough considering all the evidence I've seen suggests he is innocent. Maybe he is getting some kind of zen experience living in jail and he actually likes it or something. From what I've heard from some sysadmins, living in jail can't be much worse than that job.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      In jail, they schedule time for you to SLEEP.

    • by Archangel Michael (180766) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:41PM (#29279257) Journal

      You're right, and you're wrong.

      The Judge doesn't understand, he is not paid to understand.

      What the Judge does understand is that letting this guy out of jail on BOND is dangerous to SF political types running the city. This is far more dangerous, in their mind, than a child rapist, mass murderer or other heinous criminal, hence the steep bail.

      And the city wonders why nobody wants to visit there any more.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Gordo_1 (256312)

        Um, I'd be surprised if most people visiting SF had heard of this case. There are plenty of other reasons why nobody wants to visit SF anymore, and most derive from the rampant homelessness problems, crumbling infrastructure and systematic discrimination against people with cars.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by spire3661 (1038968)
          What you call systematic discrimination against people with cars could also be labeled 'controlling the rate at which the populous consumes driving resources.' To YOU its the city vs you. To the city, its a much larger scale issue. It stands to reason that since we dont control our population growth and every American believes they just have to own a car, you are going to get squeezed when you choose to drive in very dense areas.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by geekoid (135745)

            except it's a self correcting issue. Don't build more roads, but keep the current in repair.
            People will get sick of the traffic and find other was to get into the city.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Svartalf (2997)

        What the Judge does understand is that letting this guy out of jail on BOND is dangerous to SF political types running the city. This is far more dangerous, in their mind, than a child rapist, mass murderer or other heinous criminal, hence the steep bail.

        And the city wonders why nobody wants to visit there any more.

        Amazing, isn't it? But it's the way a stereotypical politician typically thinks- when they do manage to think. I certainly wouldn't want to work for them after this whole debacle- the stuff tha

    • by grahamsaa (1287732) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:42PM (#29279263)
      The right to a speedy trial is a pipe dream in most states in the US. If a defendant files any motions whatsoever, all time spent up to and during the argument of those motions is not counted against the prosecution. If the prosecution asks to reschedule a hearing they are often given the benefit of the doubt, sometimes 2, 3, even 4 times. Cases that are won on speedy trial grounds, particularly cases involving felonies, are incredibly rare in the US. Speedy trial is technically a constitutional right, but in practice, it's next to worthless to a defendant.

      There's also a constitutional right protecting us from excessive bail, but it doesn't look like the judge cares about that either, and even if bail was appealed, it would be held up on appeal.
  • by jayme0227 (1558821) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:36PM (#29279217) Journal

    Prosecutors have argued that the bail is appropriate because, if released, Childs could cause damage to San Francisco's network.

    So if the 4th charge is dropped and he is freed, can they keep him jailed? He could, at that point, still cause the same damage that he can now.

  • Seems excessive (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tsotha (720379) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:39PM (#29279239)

    I think the problem is they know he's not going to be convicted of anything in the end. So the judge is trying to send a message to people who might be inclined to do the same thing.

    "We can get you. We don't need to actually convict you, either. We can get you anyway."

  • 14 Months? (Score:5, Informative)

    by lax-goalie (730970) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:44PM (#29279285)

    Doesn't this guy have a sixth amendment right to a speedy trial?

    Besides (and Google may have led me the wrong CA statute) but it look like the penalty for the remaining charge could be as little as a $5,000 fine. It also seems to have an out:

    "Subdivision (c) does not apply to punish any acts which are committed by a person within the scope of his or her lawful employment. For purposes of this section, a person acts within the scope of his or her employment when he or she performs acts which are reasonably necessary to the performance of his or her work assignment."

    • Re:14 Months? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Lumpy (12016) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:58PM (#29279423) Homepage

      You actually think that laws to protect you from the government actually apply to you?

      Wow, Let me guess, you also think we run by a Innocent until proven guilty system as well.

      If you enter the legal system you are FUCKED. They play by their rules and will PUNISH YOU for trying to exercize any of your rights. you are a piece of shit and everyone in the system knows you are guilty.

      Honestly, you have a better chance at running and hiding out than getting justice through the legal system. It really is that fucked up.

      • Re:14 Months? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by gknoy (899301) <<moc.smetsysizasana> <ta> <yonkg>> on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:24PM (#29279651)

        I believe that this is less about malicious intent of those participating in the system (poilice, lawyers, judges, lawmakers), and more about Perceived Effectiveness. It's not that they don't want justice, but they need measurable numbers. They need to show that they're Being Effective at deterring crimes, stopping pedophiles, stopping hackers, winning the war on drugs, etc.

        Police are there to make arrests and get the DA a case good enough to go to trial. It's not about "justice", or even your guilt: If something you say can be interpreted as implication, you're dealing with a DA.

        DA's care about looking good to constituents (and/bosses). They can't NOT prosecute cases that the police give them. (Perhaps they CAN, but it looks bad, so I doubt it happens unless they feel they can't win it ... and even then they'll try to plea bargain you out.)

        Judges care about ... who knows what. :) They don't like to have things overturned, as that makes them look bad, but at the same time they tend to be very keen on interpreting the letter of the law. It's generally the higher appeals courts that seem to care about the "spirit" of the law, and even then the letter's pretty strong.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by dkleinsc (563838)

        You actually think that laws to protect you from the government actually apply to you?

        Well, speaking as a relatively wealthy white guy with a few political connections and at least a basic understanding legal procedures, I'd say yes. If I were, say, poor, black, or less connected, I'd probably be very very screwed if I were accused of something.

  • Disagreement (Score:4, Insightful)

    by robpoe (578975) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:47PM (#29279309)
    Terry Childs played the "battle of wills" game and lost. He's not the innocent child that some are alluding to - he did willfully not give the passwords out.

    When I was a corporate IT guy (about 3 years in the middle of about 16 years as a consultant), I took responsibility over a large part of the network in a multi facility health care business. This wasn't life or death stuff, but network outages did cause problems with appointments and general "face" of the corporation. When I came on board, the network was down a lot. No change control, no "chief" in charge of the network, and about 9 people mucking with stuff constantly.

    I put my job on the line, in exchange for FULL control of that system (It was a 85 server Netware + Groupwise environment). The first thing I did was take *everyone's* admin away, removed "admin" from supervisory rights to the tree. I then doled out the appropriate levels of access to the security team (read new users, password resetters), put in a hidden OU with a tree supervisor in it and then wrote the "master" admin/login information down. Lightly, in pencil. Folded it up, put it in an envelope with a tamper seal, that went into another tamper evident envelope and that went into the safe. Every month or two I changed the password and replaced the envelope.

    That was in case I died, they could easily get in. That is what Terry should have done. Then it wouldn't have come to this - he might have gotten sacked, and/or lost control over what he considered to be his "creation" -- but he wouldn't be rotting in jail....

    • Re:Disagreement (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Pitr (33016) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:37PM (#29279779)

      Your reasoning is very short sighted. Yes the "in case of bus" envelope is important, but if you've ever actually been a sysadmin, you know you're the blame guy. There are always idiots up the corporate chain that will blame you for anything technical even if the problem stems directly from them not following your instructions, or otherwise doing something stupid.

      That aside, this isn't about you. I know it's hard to imagine, but try to bear with me. It goes like this:

      Maybe he's a dick, but that doesn't matter. What matters is that WHAT HE DID WAS CORRECT! You do NOT give the "bus envelope", password or whatever, to some guy, the janitor, the mail boy or whoever, you give it to one of a small number of people only. It may be handled by a secretary or other assistant, but opening said envelope would be grounds for immediate dismissal, as would revealing that same password info to any of the afore mentioned individuals without appropriate "clearance" or what have you.

      So here's the situation, your boss, who may or may not have the right to know the password, with some people in the room who DEFINITELY aren't on the access list demands the password.

      Situation #1:
      You refuse to divulge sensitive info in front of inappropriate individuals because 1) it's actually your job, and 2) if you do so, you can be held liable for any damage done as a result. You are arrested immediately. Happy fun.

      Situation #2:
      You give up the password immediately, someone brings the system to a crashing halt by incompetence, and you are arrested immediately because it's obviously something you did. Happy fun.

      Sure, an envelope is a good idea, but there wasn't one, and that's not his fault, that's a management oversight. Even if this guy's difficult, or abrasive or whatever, he didn't break anything, and was willing to go forward with relinquishing the password, just on very specific terms. If that's a reason to spend over a year in jail, then we better start handing out life sentences for J walking, because unlike not giving up a password, J walking could actually harm someone.

    • Re:Disagreement (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:51PM (#29279903)

      He's not the innocent child that some are alluding to - he did willfully not give the passwords out.

      He did willfully not give the passwords out TO PEOPLE HE DIDN'T KNOW, AND DID NOT KNOW IF THEY WERE AUTHORIZED TO HAVE THE PASSWORDS.

      Sheesh.

      If you're a lowly private in charge of highly classified information, even if a colonel comes along, you're not supposed to hand over the highly classified information without determining that the colonel is authorized to have it. Even if the colonel yells really loud.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      He's not the innocent child that some are alluding to - he did willfully not give the passwords out.

      Neither would you if your boss asked you to blab the keys to the kingdom to random unknown persons on a conference call. Even with what he did - hell, what I can do in the scope of my job - the worst he should expect without demonstrated malice is getting canned.

    • Re:Disagreement (Score:5, Insightful)

      by tinkerghost (944862) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @08:06PM (#29280045) Homepage

      He's not the innocent child that some are alluding to - he did willfully not give the passwords out in accordance to the security policy in effect at the time he was ordered to do so.

      Fixed that for you.

      I have to ask you - if the facility manager demanded that you tell him the password while standing in the middle of a conference room full of people you don't know and with a live conference call going on would you have done it? I doubt it. You might have directed him to the envelope in the safe, but more likely you would have pointed to the security policy in effect and told him you can't do that, but if he would like to make a written request through your boss then an arrangement could be made.

      Then it wouldn't have come to this - he might have gotten sacked, and/or lost control over what he considered to be his "creation" -- but he wouldn't be rotting in jail....

      You're making the mistake of believing this is about the actual security issues or the proper performance of duties. This is about a manager waving his dick around and screaming bloody murder when he's told to put it away. Look at all of the case. When he was told to disclose the passwords, there were about a dozen people in the room and an unknown number of people on the conference call. None of the people in the room had any reason to know the password - and he did not directly report to the manager demanding the password.

      Remember, Childs said he would turn the passwords over to the City Manager - who was the only person above him in the network foodchain - before he was arrested, and the city lawyers blocked the manager from talking to him for over a week after he was arrested. He never refused to turn over the passwords, he refused to turn them over to people with no right/reason to have them.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by IICV (652597)

      It's been a while, so you probably don't remember what led to this situation.

      Here's how I remember it: Terry's superiors asked for the passwords. He refused, because in his estimation handing them over would have been a breach of security (which is true - you don't give the PHB root access, because he doesn't need it and will probably abuse it). They fired him, jailed him on some trumped-up charges (as we can infer from 75% of the charges against him being thrown out), and asked again. He refused, but since

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by mabhatter654 (561290)

        Exactly, the entire thing was a CIVIL matter, not criminal, because he legally had the right to possess the passwords and he was questioning the right of the managers to ask for what they claimed was their stuff. The very arresting him without some kind of charge first .. the DA isn't a JUDGE... and isn't a police officer there's no obligation to follow any orders from them.

        They KNEW they were going to fire him and could have gotten an injunction from a judge to compel the passwords before they even told hi

    • Re:Disagreement (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Brian_Ellenberger (308720) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @09:48PM (#29280755)

      Terry Childs played the "battle of wills" game and lost. He's not the innocent child that some are alluding to - he did willfully not give the passwords out.

      When I was a corporate IT guy (about 3 years in the middle of about 16 years as a consultant), I took responsibility over a large part of the network in a multi facility health care business. ...that is what Terry should have done. ...

      Uh, so because he didn't do what YOU did you think it is right to throw him in Jail for a year? Our prisons are swelling with thousands of people who are their on someone's whim. EVERYONE is a federal felon nowadays. I mean everyone. There is some federal law you are violating that can land you in prison indefinitely. Now, if you are a member of Congress or the cabinet you can "forget" to pay some taxes. Otherwise, you better hope you don't tick off someone in power because they can and will destroy you. http://www.amazon.com/Three-Felonies-Day-Target-Innocent/dp/1594032556 [amazon.com]

      We are living in some scary times. The political class is treated like royalty and every crime is forgiven (see Kennedy, Chappaquiddick, and the royal state funeral he was given). And the average American, who is thrown into prison just to pump up some prosecutor resume.

  • by incense (63332) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:56PM (#29279401)

    While it seems the prosecutors in this case are overreacting (why's this even a criminal case?), what I find curious is that there was no scheme to retrieve the passwords if Childs were to pass away accidentally (no HBB protection). Passwords written on paper in a safe, safety deposit box or similar, or the passphrase to Password Safe written down somewhere secure.

    It's pretty stupid to have to physically access all the routers to reset passwords in the event that the network admin dies or quits in fury. Just write the procedure into the admin's job description.

  • by rahvin112 (446269) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @06:59PM (#29279427)

    Maybe I don't remember HS Civic's very well but I thought the point of bail was ONLY to prevent flight, not that it had been redefined to be large as a result of danger the innocent (until proved otherwise) person poses. He's being jailed not because he's a flight risk but because of political posturing by the DA, that is a serious miscarriage of justice. I don't have a lot of sympathy for the guy but bail is clearly being misused here.

    • by DragonWriter (970822) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:55PM (#29279947)

      Maybe I don't remember HS Civic's very well but I thought the point of bail was ONLY to prevent flight, not that it had been redefined to be large as a result of danger the innocent (until proved otherwise) person poses.

      You badly misremember your HS civics, or were badly misinformed in that class, then. Bail has historically been discretionary, and dangerousness has almost always been a consideration. It was briefly, in non-capital federal cases, restricted to a guarantee of appearance under the Bail Reform Act of 1966, but considerations of dangerousness for non-capital defendants were restored in the District of Columbia Court Reform and Criminal Procedure Act of 1970 and, more broadly, in the 1984 revisions to federal bail law.

  • by KwKSilver (857599) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:22PM (#29279619)
    This whole thing has seemed overblown from the get go to me. I thought it had been cleared up a while back ..obviously not. My guess is that he stepped on some politician's/power broker's toes somehow, and "they" are punishing him this way; it's a classic corrupt government gambit. Vindictive state and local politicos have a lot of ways to screw people who lack friends in high places. Wonder what the poor bastard did, refuse to help some honcho spy on or frame someone?.
  • by Marful (861873) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:27PM (#29279681)
    8th Amendment of the Bill of Rights

    Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

    Judge needs to be removed and disbarred.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @07:39PM (#29279799)

    The pervert/sickos they just caught in SF had their bail set at $500,000 each
    for imprisoning and raping kids for 20 years

    10% of what this admins bail is set at
    good to see the USA court has its priorities set
    raping kids is only 10% of the risk to society than this guy?

  • by devleopard (317515) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @08:05PM (#29280035) Homepage

    House arrest, and GPS monitor. Any damage to their network can easily be traced to an IP address, which if he can't move with freedom, makes it pretty easy to identify if it came from his computer. (I'm assuming they can't restrict his access to computer.) If he does, charge him with another crime. If he were to attack the network under such conditions, he'd be demonstrating his utter desire for being raped in prison, as I can't think of any other sane reason why he'd do it. Only reason bond should be denied is flight risk or a risk to further harm against a human victim/witness.

  • by Locke2005 (849178) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @08:11PM (#29280087)
    Phillip Garrido is only being held on $1 million bail. Which one do you think can do more damage if released, Childs or Garrido? If you answered "Childs", I would insist your priorities are seriously fucked up.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by TheRaven64 (641858)
      But he could control the network! With computers! Nuclear missiles are controlled by computers! He could kill everyone!
  • by FrankDrebin (238464) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @08:18PM (#29280149) Homepage
    ... when he has to register as a Childs offender.
  • $5 million (Score:4, Funny)

    by selven (1556643) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @08:25PM (#29280203)
    Someone send over 63 pirated songs then.
  • Can we help him? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by DragonDru (984185) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @08:40PM (#29280315)
    Is there anything that can be done for him?
    As a SysAd and citizen I find this case to be disturbing. I don't know if visiting him in jail would be helpful.
    Do they even let one have cookies in there? Cookies may not help him or his case, but cookies can taste good.
  • Scalia's wet dream (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hamburgler007 (1420537) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @10:56PM (#29281157)
    When ordinary citizens break the law, they get punished, often going to jail. When officers of the state violate citizen's constitutional rights, violations that have a much more resounding effect on society, the violations go largely ignored, rarely resulting in penalties, and even rarer that those officers will see any jail time. It is unfair and fucked up, the kind of system the founders wanted to prevent. IMO, if a civil servant (from the bottom to the top) blatantly violates the constitutional rights of a citizen, it should be prosecuted. Of course that will never happen, but one can dream.
  • by redelm (54142) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @10:57PM (#29281159) Homepage

    On one charge? This looks _very_ fishy. Conditions on bail would certainly include no computer use. I suspect the real motive for the DA is to use incarceration as pressure for some sort of plea bargain. Any bargain, because their case is weak / non-existant. Highly corrupt.

    The DA has to pressure, because if he does NOT cave, they're facing a multi-million $ lawsuit for wrongful (or even malicious where less would be protected by privilige) prosecution. This will ruin careers. As it should.

    • by rastilin (752802) on Wednesday September 02, 2009 @01:36AM (#29281851)

      The DA has to pressure, because if he does NOT cave, they're facing a multi-million $ lawsuit for wrongful (or even malicious where less would be protected by privilige) prosecution. This will ruin careers. As it should.

      Then that DA is exceptionally short-sighted. They've already gone so far as to set up a storm that won't blow over. Having a powerful official visibly give the shaft to an employee is not something that goes down well in a first world country. Whatever the city does at this point is meaningless, it's already over, the only important thing now is how long they intend to thrash around until they fall down.

  • by Kaenneth (82978) on Tuesday September 01, 2009 @11:52PM (#29281447) Homepage Journal

    What skilled, knowledgable, trained network administrator would work for them at this point?

    Some may be willing to take a crappy job to put food on their kids table... but one that's likely to put you in jail for following their own proceedures?... I wouldn't do that to my kids.

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