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Prosecutor Says Felon Who Threatened Judge Should be Convicted of Threatening Public Official

Jamal Austin, 59, filed a motion in 2013 that Alameda County Superior Court Judge Jacob Blea III should be "removed or killed" in an effort to force Blea to grant his appeal, according to prosecutors

By Bay City News—

A five-time convicted felon who threatened a judge's life in a legal motion last year appeared to mean business and should be convicted of threatening a public official, a prosecutor told jurors today.
 
In his closing argument in the trial of 59-year-old Jamal Austin, prosecutor Neil Layton said Austin seemed to be serious when he told Alameda County Superior Court Judge Jacob Blea III in a motion he filed in March 2013 that Blea should be "removed or killed" and that it was the judge's "last chance to redeem yourself."

Layton said Austin's motion came during his long-running appeal of another judge's decision to dismiss a lawsuit that Austin had filed against Emeryville police and Highland Hospital in Oakland alleging that excessive force had been used against him when he was arrested for an incident in 2009.
 
Austin acted as his own attorney during his appeal and is acting as his own attorney in his criminal case as well. According to Layton, Austin told Blea, who headed the Alameda County Superior Court's appellate division, "If you refuse to do the act now necessary to ensure the integrity of the judiciary is upheld don't blame anyone but yourself."
 
The prosecutor said, "It's clear that this was a threat to try to get the judge to grant his appeal." Layton said Blea reasonably feared for his safety because Austin was out of custody at the time even though he has a long criminal record that began when he was convicted of pimping in 1979.

Austin also has two forgery convictions as well as convictions for possession of a controlled substance and second-degree commercial robbery. Austin, who's also known as Thomas Robinson, was arrested after he filed his motion in March 2013 and has been in custody since then.
 
According to Layton, Blea testified during the trial that he feared for his life and took security precautions such as having police patrol the area around his house and installing a direct radio line to his local police department.
 
Austin, dressed in a blue jail uniform and sitting in a wheelchair, admitted that, "I might have been wrong for my words" and some of the things he wrote were "totally wrong and unacceptable."
 
But Austin said, "I'm not guilty" and he never thought anybody would believe that he seriously intended to kill Judge Blea. Referring to notorious mobsters, Austin said prosecutors" are making me out to be John Gotti or Al Capone."
 
Austin said he was only trying to draw attention to his case and send the message that if he didn't get his way in the appellate court he planned to "go public and talk to people like Louis Farrakhan, Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton."
 
He said, "I'm not going to hide." Layton said Blea and Alameda County Sheriff's deputies took Austin's threats seriously because they became increasingly specific and ominous.
 
Layton said in March 2012 Austin wrote in a motion about "killing judges" but wasn't specific and then in October 2012 he said he wanted to remove Blea "by any means necessary."
 
The prosecutor alleged that the threat Austin made in March 2013 "was specific" and was meant to be taken seriously. Jurors' in Austin's trial will begin deliberating on Thursday.
Proponeeighty Sevenimlaw April 03, 2014 at 06:47 PM
Just hang the S.O.B.

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