DAILYKENN.com --A Michigan man is in jail and being held on a $500,000 bond after criticizing a judge.
Jonathan Vanderhagen, 35, apparently blamed Judge Rachel Rancilio for the death of his 21-month-old son after the judge granted custody to his mother. The boy reportedly died due to medical neglect.
The jailing of Vanderhagen raises legal questions regarding free speech. Reports say he made no direct threats.
Ironically, the efforts of the judiciary in Macomb County, Michigan to deter criticism has opened a floodgate of criticism as citizens express their outrage.
From macombdaily.com ▼
A Chesterfield Township man is being held on a $500,000 bond and faces a misdemeanor trial, accused of posting implied threats to a Macomb County judge related to the death of his young son.
Jonathan Vanderhagen, 35, was arrested and jailed July 11 for posting comments and images about circuit Judge Rachel Rancilio related to his late son, Killian, who died at 21 months in September 2017 while under the care of his mother. Rancilio filed a police complaint against Vanderhagen.
He posted 10 percent of a $10,000 bond but was thrown back in jail July 24 when Judge Sebastian Lucido of 41B District Court raised the bond to $500,000 because Vanderhagen posted additional items the judge deemed in violation of bond conditions.
Lucido said while the new postings weren’t direct threats, they violated his condition of no direct or indirect contact.
“Though he likes to hint around the fringes of it, in my opinion they are of a threatening nature after the no contact (order) was put in place,” Lucido said at the bond hearing, according to a transcript.
Lucido adds, “They’re alluding to Judge Rancilio and I’m not going to sit here and explain it any further,” saying the postings speak for themselves.”
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