3/14/08 – Marie Mason Update

March 14, 2008 at 6:08 pm (Announcements and Advisories, Marie Mason)

We want to extend our thanks to everyone that has offered support and
helped us navigate this treacherous path so far. One thing were learning
early on is Marie had a lot of friends. Its important we all do what we
can to let Marie know she is not alone and that we got her back! Even
something as simple as a letter of support can make all the difference in
the world.
Marie has been attempting to call several friends from jail collect. We
have found out the hard way that cell phones and most digital phone
services will not accept collect calls from a correctional facility. Its
heartbreaking to get repeated phone calls from Marie and not to be able to
accept them or even communicate (outside of a slow moving physical letter)
why. Folks might want to consider checking to see if their phone provider
will accept collect calls from a correctional facility now rather then
finding out they will not during an emergency.
We drove up to The Butler County jail with Marie’s daughter Thursday
(3/13/08) but were denied access because she had already been seen by a
visitor that day. Apparently Marie is only allowed 1 visiting session of
up to 3 people per session once per visiting day (Thursdays and Sundays).
While frustrating it shows our failure to foresee such an event and how
much more coordination needs to be done on a local level. Its natural and
healthy for Marie that locals are concerned about her well being and want
to visit her. In an attempt to learn from our previous mistake we ask if
you are planning on visiting Marie please get in touch with us first so
that we can set up a schedule and ensure she is getting the maximum amount
of visitors allowed per visit, that important information is getting to
her and that people aren’t making the drive just to be turned away. On a
positive note we were able to confirm she has access to the funds we had
previously put in her commissary and we were able to put $50 more dollars
in her commissary account and buy her a $25 pre paid phone card.
Several folks have asked if they can send email letters that we can pass
on to Marie. I know from personal experience that when locked up the
physical act of receiving a letter from a friend, loved one or supporter
can be a real morale booster. If you are located in the USA we encourage
you to write Marie directly yourself. Marie’s Mailing address and mail
rules can be found at http://www.midwestgreenscare.org. If you are outside the
USA or would still prefer to email letters we would be happy to forward on
any messages of support. Email all letters to freemarie@riseup.net. If you
haven’t already I encourage everyone to write letters to Marie.
Though we have talked with close to a dozen attorneys since Monday we
still have not secured Marie legal representation. If anyone can help out
or offer us referrals on this front please get in touch.
I hate to ask folks for money but the small band of local friends running
Marie’s support group has been hemorrhaging funds the past few days. If
you can donate to Marie’s legal fund or just help us out with some of the
mounting expenses (commissary, jail house phone calls, gas funds,
etc…)it would be much appreciated. Note that we are not and will not be
using funds earmarked for legal defense for operational costs so please
specify. We hope to have the website with paypal set up by next week and
other donation options are listed below.
Love and Rage,
Steve
Got Your Back
Friends of Marie Mason
P.O. Box 19065
Cincinnati, OH 45219
freemarie@riseup.net
http://www.midwestgreenscare.org
Listserve
freemarie-subscribe@lists.riseup.net
How you can help
1. We are currently collecting funds for Marie’s legal defense. One lawyer
told us it will likely cost between $20,000 – $60,000 to represent a case
like this. Its important we begin our fund raising immediately. We are in
the process of setting up a website (freemarie.org coming soon) where
folks will be able to use PayPal to donate direct but until then ask folks
to send funds in the form of a check or money order made out to “Books for
Prisoners”. Please put in the notes section Marie and/or include a letter
detailing that the enclosed funds are for Marie Masons defense.
We are grateful to have been contacted by an anonymous donor who will match
dollar for dollar up to $1000 for Marie’s legal defense fund. This offer is
good up until April 15.
2. We are looking for artists who are willing to donate their talent and
time to the cause.
3. If you know of any activist attorneys in the Grand Rapids, MI area please
pass along their contact info ASAP.
4. Web design. We recently purchased the domain freemarie.org and are
looking for talented web designers to help out.

5. Write Marie! Mail will be a life line for her during these troubling
times.

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