Here we have a case of contempt of cop which is being backed by an over zealous prosecutor.
After speaking to the woman, an officer told Mr. Dittrich there would be no charges, he said, but requested identification. He told her he did not want to give it. She told him, he said, that he would be charged with obstruction. He gave his name and address. Then she asked what country he was from. He said he did not have to say. When she insisted and he insisted, he was taken to the police station in handcuffs and given a summons.
Now New York is a stop and identify state, however that still requires the reasonable suspicion of a crime. In this case we have a thin skinned woman who got upset at a blind man staring at her trying to figure out why this woman was blue. There is no law against staring and there is no reason to believe that this individual had committed a crime. Further there is no reason this man needed to provide his country of origin, doubly so as an American citizen.
That’s when we arrive at this little gem.
At one hearing, the prosecutor advised the judge that he would like to see Mr. Dittrich spend a little time behind bars. Disorderly conduct carries a maximum penalty of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine, though it is unusual for a first offender to serve time.
Remember, it takes a good prosecutor to convict a guilty man, it takes a great prosecutor to convict an innocent one. Couple that with the diverse number of laws that are open to interpretation and anyone that a prosecutor wants they can have.
State Sponsored Criminal Count 202: Jane Doe (As usual if you find the names let me know)
Honorable Mention: Prosecutor John Doe
Because putting an old blind man in jail is how you protect society. You need to make them all sheep.