"You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say," the cop was saying before he was interrupted.
"Yeah, yeah, I know my damn rights!" Monte exclaimed.
Monte is the biggest hustler in town. He had been dealing out drugs since he was 15 years old. The cops have always had their suspicions of his family and later on had enough evidence to prosecute him at the age of 18, but the evidence just disappeared the day before the trial.
Ever since that day, the cops have just been watching over his house. That is until they got an anonymous tip. The man said a deal went wrong and he was sure Monte had drugs on him down on the corner of 6th and Concert. Sure enough there he was. Of course he started running, but with the whole police force on him, there was no escaping and they finally caught him.
"Ha-ha, Monte Jones," said the police captain excitedly. "You know we've been trying to bust your ass for six years now and here you are. You're done boy!"
"You ain't got me now, just like you didn't have me three years ago!" Monte said with cockiness.
"Yeah well tell that to the judge!"
As the captain left, Monte sat in jail rotting away behind the bars. He began to have a flashback of his life ever since the age of 18.
"Monte please don't do this anymore. I can get a job and make money. You don't have to go out and sell anymore! Please, baby!" Mari cried.
Mari was Monte's girlfriend and also the mother of his 2 year old baby girl, Monique. Mari had been against drug dealing from the beginning, but she hasn't had any complaints of how they lived either.
They lived like celebrities. They had their own big white house with a Jacuzzi and pool all in the hills of Hollywood, California.
"I do need to do this Mari. I'm the man of this house. I should be making the goddamn money, not a tramp that can't even get off her ass and clean the house!" Monte yelled.
"Monte, stop it! Where are you going? Come back!" Mari yelled after him.
After he slammed the door and left the house he never looked back. Sitting there thinking about it now, he starts to cry. He hasn't seen Mari or Monique in three years and he feels bad that he left. Now he's ended up in a cell, instead of thinking of his family that he had always dreamed of having.
"Jones," said Officer Kable.
Monte just kept starring down at the baby blue painted floor, tears dripping down off his face, shaking his head.
"Jones!" Officer Kable yelled.
"What?" Monte answered back.
"Your lawyer is here."
"Whatever. You know he ain't gon help me."
The lawyer had Kable open the cell door. A screeching sound came off of the metal to metal contact as the door was opened and then closed. Mr. Hedrick sat next to Monte.
"Man, what the hell did I just say? There is no justice out there for a black man."
"Mr. Jones, I guarantee if I can't get you off of the whole thing, I can at least get you a deal." Mr. Hedrick pushed.
"So what does that mean? Plead guilty or something?" Jones asked.
"Unfortunately, yes," Mr. Hedrick was interrupted.
"See. That's what I'm talkin about. I ain't gon get off of anything. I'm gon set in jail for the rest of my life and rot." Monte said with disappointment.
", But admitting that you done wrong and you know it won't happen again will loosen up the consequences. You don't have to tell me you did anything wrong, but the judge is already with the other side. So what is it going to be?" Mr. Hedrick asked.
There was a long pause. Monte wiped the tears from his eyes. He knew he messed up and it was time to get his life back together, but he wasn't ready for prison.
"Damned if I don't, damned if I do huh?" he smiled.
"Then you'll do it?"
"If I want a second chance I have to right?"
"Alright, I will see you in court on Friday! You won't regret it!"
"You a free man, you can say that." Monte whispered.
After Mr. Hedrick left, Officer Kable locked the cell back up and grinned at Monte.
"What the fuck are you smilin at pig? You know I got a gang on the outside that would love some fresh pork sandwiches right now?"
"Watch it Jones or you won't make it to Friday." Officer Kable commanded.
When Friday came, Monte was prepared to give a guilty plea, but Mr. Hedrick didn't have a deal.
"What do you mean you don't have a deal?" Monte yelled.
Before Mr. Hedrick could explain, the judge walked in.
"Please rise for the honorable Judge Maize." said the bailiff.
As Judge Maize took her seat, Mr. Hedrick explained that the prosecution didn't support drug dealers.
"See, I knew this would happen. You tell me one thing and do another. You just like every other lawyer."
As Monte and Mr. Hedrick were bickering, they unintentionally ignored everything the judge was saying.
"Ok. Court is now in session. You may sit down." Judge Maize started.
"It's not like that. Don't worry I've got it under control." Mr. Hedrick continued.
"Mr. Jones and Mr. Hedrick, if both of you don't sit down, I will find both of you in contempt of my court and order both of you a night in jail at your expense! Now sit down!" Judge Maize commanded.
Monte and Mr. Hedrick proceeded to sit down as Maize read the case.
"Ok, this is the case of the State of California v. Armonte Terrell Jones." Maize confirmed.
"It looks as though the defendant, Mr. Jones, is willing to go with a guilty plea. Is that correct Mr. Jones?" Maize asked.
Monte looked over at Mr. Hedrick with anger and dismay.
"You put up a guilty plea without telling me that we had no deal?"
Mr. Hedrick shrugged.
"Mr. Jones, I am the judge and when I ask you a question, you reply to me." Maize said, starting to get furious.
"Yes your honor and I guess I'm willing to plead guilty." Monte said as he glared at Mr. Hedrick.
"Do you understand that the maximum penalty for being a vendor of any drugs in the State of California is punishable by up to ten years in prison and/or a maximum fine of $500,000?"
"Yes your honor."
"Do you understand that since you have entered a guilty plea, you waive your right to a trial by your peers?"
"Yes your honor."
"Now then, since this is your first time in front of this or any other court, I am willing to bargain. You can either take the ten years and the fine of $500,000 or two years in the "Help a Criminal" program."
"What's that?" Monte asked.
"It is where we as a state provide a first time criminal with the chance to do his or her time helping out in a community. It usually consists of one big project, 40 hours of work a week for two years. Now it won't only be you, rather it will be you and four other criminals."
"You know what? I think that sounds great!"
"Now it is up to you to get along with the other four, because if I have to see you back in this courtroom, I will make the rest of your life a living hell."
"No problem. Thank you, your honor!" Monte exclaimed.
"This court is adjured. Mr. Jones, your bus leaves tomorrow at 6:00 AM. You will not be permitted to take anything with you except what you are wearing."
Monte nodded and was escorted back to his cell to get some sleep before his departure.