[Hpn] Homeless woman opts for a trail: turns down a plea deal over Buena Park charges

Morgan W. Brown morganbrown@hotmail.com
Sat, 28 Jul 2001 08:51:52 -0400


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-------Forwarded article-------

Friday, July 27, 2001
Orange County Register <http://www.ocregister.com>
[California]
Local section
Homeless woman opts for a trail
<http://www.ocregister.com/local/homeless00727cci.shtml>

She turns down a plea deal over Buena Park charges

July 27, 2001

By DEBBIE TALANIAN
The Orange County Register


Dianne Grue, a 66-year-old homeless woman charged with violating Buena 
Park's anti-camping ordinance, rejected a judge's offer of community service 
and informal probation Thursday because she refuses to plead guilty.

Grue said she would rather have a jury trial than admit guilt. If convicted, 
she could face one year in jail and a $2,000 fine.

"I don't want to end it today," Grue said after turning down Judge James 
Marion's offer in the North Justice Center in Fullerton. "I wasn't guilty."

Jury selection is set to begin Tuesday.

Grue, who has been homeless for four years in Buena Park, has been arrested 
six times for breaking the same law. She has paid fines and done jail time 
after pleading guilty to previous violations.

City prosecutor Greg Palmer offered Grue two weeks in jail for her current 
violations, for which she was arrested in November. Grue said she is 
terrified of jail.

Palmer said the judge's offer Thursday was the best Grue could have hoped 
for.

He also said he was against the plea offer because he felt it was too 
lenient and would send a message to homeless people that Buena Park's rules 
aren't enforced.

Jon Alexander, Grue's attorney, said he thought the judge's offer was 
reasonable, but that Grue was right to reject it.

"God help us when it's better to plead guilty to something you didn't do," 
he said.

Alexander has said he plans to argue that Grue had no choice but to sleep 
outdoors because the county lacks adequate beds for the homeless.

Grue has been staying the last couple of months at Alexander's Dana Point 
home.

She says when the trial ends she wants to leave Buena Park.

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-------End of forward-------

Morgan <morganbrown@hotmail.com>
Morgan W. Brown
Montpelier Vermont USA


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