Unequal Justice Against African Americans in Prince George Va

Charging Harsh Crimes to African Americans in Rual Areas of Vrginia

My lawyers have asked District Attorney Jay Paul to drop all charges against Derrick Savage. In 2008, he ranked #413 on ESPN for basketball, and has never been in trouble with the law. In fact, Derrick was on a basketball scholarship to play for Montgomery College, Rockville MD.

The case

An elderly school teacher was robbed, but Derrick Savage did not participate.

The facts

Derrick Savage was taking co-defendant #2 home. There were a total of two co-defendants in the car. Co-defendant #3 was already at the location visiting a family member and friend. This co-defendant, the state?s witness, called and asked Derrick for a ride home---which is about another ten minutes from where Derrick dropped off co-defendant #2 already in the car.

When Derrick arrived, co-defendant #3 tried to enter the car. At that time Derrick, specifically told him that if he wanted a ride home he needed gas money .In court, co-defendant #3 stated that he will do what he have to do. Then he walked away, and Derrick remained in the car talking on his cell phone. Co-defendant #3, before entering the car, gave $20 to co-defendant #2. From that, Derrick was then given $4 gas money to take codefendant #3 home. This is on record in court. When Derrick arrived at the gas station, co-defendant #3 took the four dollars back from Derrick, went inside the gas station, gave the $4 to the attendant, and pumped the gas himself. Even, the

police officer testified that Derrick Savage stated that he did not participate, plan or conspire in any robbery.

Derrick pleaded ?Not Guilty,? to a charge of Second Degree Robbery. There is a discrepancy by the District Attorney regarding the interpretation of what took place on the night in question. On that night, a robbery did take place against an elderly school teacher, but Derrick Savage played no part in it.

The jury, verdict, and sentence

The jury were 11 middle aged Caucasians and one African American ranging from 50-60 years old. Typically, they have misconception of African American males. Initially, the jury was hung. Then, after the trial judge ordered a recount, they returned a verdict guilty of Robbery in the Second Degree. Prior to sentencing, the District Attorney told my lawyer to make sure the black community does not get out of hand. Derrick was sentenced to 3 years and 5 months.

Jury verdicts are usually based on evidence presented, and the record is clear that there was absolutely no evidence presented supporting a felony robbery conviction in the second degree.

Throughout my twenty two years of military service in the United States Army, I have never seen such a gross miscarriage of justice, and I am writing to request your intervention. From my perspective, based on the lack of evidence used to convict my son of a robbery he did not commit, the District Attorney of Prince George did not follow the guidelines and the Statue laws of Virginia.

I am hoping that you can address this matter to clear an innocent victim. I have always believed that people who do what is right should never be punished, and I know in my heart that what is happening in Prince George is not consistent with your values or with what the State of Virginia perceives as justice served.