14 October 2015
Crowdfund & GET ON THE BUS from Chicago for Rasmea’s appeal!
Stand with Rasmea and fill the appeals courthouse in Cincinnati!
Fill out this form if you’re in Chicago and want to ride with us!
We will leave at 10 PM the night before the appeal, Tuesday, October 13th, 2015. (Bus pick up site TBD.)
Please help us raise money to get to Cincinnati! It is imperative that we fill the courthouse one last time!
Those who are driving their own cars and can take others, or would like to carpool, should contact Joe Iosbaker as soon as possible.
Over 100 people joined Rasmea Odeh from Chicago during her trial on trumped up political charges last year, and after being convicted, again during her sentencing earlier this year. She still needs us one more time in Cincinnati for her appeal on October 14th, so the Rasmea Defense Committee is asking for your financial commitment.
We need to raise $5,000 for two charter buses and other transportation expenses to get 110 of Rasmea’s closest supporters to Ohio for the appeal.
As her defense attorneys have said since the beginning of this ordeal, “You [Rasmea’s supporters] provide public testimony when you rally outside the courthouse and then file in to fill the courtroom. Public testimony of not only the power of Rasmea’s positive influence on her friends and colleagues, and the people she organizes, but public testimony also of the fact that she did not receive a fair trial and that there are people who are going to hold the system—prosecutors and judges—accountable.”
While in Cincinnati, we will organize a support rally in front of the courthouse at 8 AM EST on Wednesday, October 14, 2015, and then fill the courtroom immediately thereafter, as Rasmea’s defense and the prosecution each present their oral arguments to a three judge panel.
Wednesday, October 14, 2015, at 8 AM EST (oral argument for the appeal starts at 9 AM EST)
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit
540 Potter Stewart U.S. Courthouse
100 E. 5th Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202
The Rasmea Defense Committee contends that Judge Gershwin Drain did not allow for a full and fair trial, and believes that is why Rasmea was convicted and sentenced to 18 months in prison and deportation. We are confident that she has solid arguments on appeal, and wrote in late July that the “defense argues conclusively that the government ‘never really addresses the basic constitutional deprivations asserted in Ms. Odeh’s opening appellate brief,’ and that Rasmea is ‘entitled to present her complete defense to the jury,’ which can only happen in a new trial.”
After the oral arguments are heard by three appellate judges on October 14, a decision will be made between two and six months later. If the court agrees with the defense and overturns the conviction and the sentencing, the case gets sent back to the prosecution to possibly refile charges, whereupon the entire trial process begins anew. But this time, evidence of torture, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), etc., would be allowed into the courtroom.
If the court upholds the conviction but disagrees with the sentence, the appellate judges send new sentencing guidelines back to Drain for re-sentencing. In the worst possible scenario, her conviction and sentencing would be upheld, meaning that she would have to serve 18 months in prison and then be deported. If this happens, the defense could ask that all of the 6th Circuit appellate court judges, not just the three panelists, review the case as a last ditch effort to win the appeal.
We have been doing non-stop fundraising, organizing public events, and pitching Rasmea’s story to media across the country and the world.
There is still much more organizing to be done!