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Marissa Alexander remains released on bond

Cyril Josh Barker | 1/16/2014, 4:14 p.m.
Marissa Alexander

Reports indicate that the Black Florida woman, Marissa Alexander, who was released on bond while she awaits trial for shooting a warning shot at her abusive husband was almost sent back to jail after violating the terms of her bond.

Florida’s state attorney’s office filed a motion to revoke Alexander’s bond after she reportedly left her home while she is awaiting trial. Under the terms of her bond, Alexander is suppose to be under house arrest and not leave her house.

Alexander took trips outside, including shopping for clothes and going to the bank. However, her correctional service counselor said that all of the trips she took were authorized. Alexander is wearing a GPS monitor that tracks her whereabouts.

A judge decided that the trips were not a “willful violation,” being that her counselor permitted her to make the errands. “This is a situation that has occurred because of a mistake, simply that and nothing more,” said Judge James Daniel.

Assistant State Attorney Richard Mantei has been at the helm of trying to get Alexander, who was originally sentenced to 20 years, back in jail. He said that Alexander has been given a second chance and should stay true to her commitment of her bond.

Angela Corey runs the Florida state attorney’s office and originally prosecuted Alexander. In 2010, Alexander fired a warning shot to defend her life during an attack from her abusive estranged husband, causing no injuries.

Alexander was found guilty and sentenced to a mandatory minimum of 20 years. That verdict has since been overturned, and there is a new trial scheduled to begin on March 31.

Alexander’s case has been compared to George Zimmerman’s case involving the killing of Trayvon Martin. “The evidence shows you can’t rely on her,” Mantei said. “How many second chances before they’re not second chances anymore?”

Alexander is allowed to continue her house arrest and remain with her children and family until her new trial begins. Supporters of Alexander say this recent episode is another attempt to discredit Alexander and give her an unfair chance at the trial.

“Instead of being an ally to Alexander, the state continues to abuse her, including threatening to keep her from her children, minimizing the violence she experienced, making false accusations and suggesting that her life is not worth saving,” said Aleta Alston-Toure of the organization Free Marissa Now. “Corey has taken advantage of every opportunity to undermine Alexander’s credibility and criminalize her character in an attempt to sway public opinion before Alexander’s new trial.”

Supporters say they will not be intimidated by the Florida state attorney’s office’s tactics and will continue to demand that what they call “extreme harassment” by the office cease and the case against Alexander be dropped immediately.

“We are more committed than ever,” said Alston-Toure. “The movement has raised over $22,000 from hundreds of donors who donated to Marissa Alexander’s legal defense fund with love and solidarity. We will increase our efforts to educate communities on how institutional racism in the criminal justice system can further victimize and entrap victims of domestic violence. We will walk with Marissa Alexander every step of the way until she is fully acquitted.”