June 20, 2013
Captain Todd McKissack
P.O. Box 727
Tallahassee, FL 32303
RE: Chief Inspector General Case #201302130003
Dear Captain McKissack:
I was referred to you by the Office of the Governor. I am the mother of DeShon Rashard Thomas, Leon County Jail inmate #216577; I’m writing this letter on behalf of my son. My son has been in the Leon County Jail since February 2, 2011 when he was 17-years-old. Subsequently, he was charged with cultivation of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, 2 counts of 1st Degree Murder, possession of a firearm by a juvenile delinquent. At my request, in August 2012, after having been on the case for sixteen months, DeShon fired his private attorney, Greg Cummings. Simultaneous to firing Cummings, DeShon was charged with Solicitation to Commit Murder with the intended victim being his friend and State Attorney’s Office supposed key witness, Trentin Ross. On August 17, 2012, the day after Cummings filed a Motion to Withdraw from the case, DeShon was put in solitary confinement; his visitation and phone privileges were taken away from him. Leon County Jail Records will show that for the most part I was the only one visiting him on a regular basis. It has been nearly a year since I’ve been able to visit with my son. My son has not been convicted of any wrongdoings—all of the charges against him are accusations without facts. In reference to the murder charges, there are no sworn statements, no physical evidence, no material evidence, no circumstantial evidence and no motive to support the charges.
On February 13, 2013 during normal business hours, I went to the Leon County Sheriff’s Office to speak with someone about visiting my son. I was referred to the jail—specifically Major Coughlin. I went directly to the jail. There I waited for over an hour for Major Coughlin. He never responded. The next afternoon I received a phone call from someone by the name of Lee. Lee told me that he was calling for Major Coughlin. I explained to Lee that I live in Central Florida and that I wanted to know what needs to happen in order for me to visit with my son; especially when I come to Tallahassee for his court dates. Lee said that he didn’t see a problem with me visiting with my son because my son has been respectful. He said that he would have to discuss it with Major Coughlin. Lee also told me that he would call me back the next day—he never did.
My son recently asked me to do everything possible to see about getting him out of solitary confinement. Again, he’s been accused not convicted. Those who were supposedly to play roles in the solicitation to commit murder are other jailhouse inmates. In my opinion, I strongly believe that the solicitation to commit murder plot is just another scheme launched by Leon County Sheriff’s detectives and the State Attorney’s Office to help give weight to charge my son with the double murder charges. My son had been in jail for over a year and half when Leon County Sheriff’s detectives and the State Attorney’s Office decided to create hostility in DeShon towards Trentin Ross. The Leon County Sheriff’s Office, the State Attorney’s Office, nor the Leon County Clerk of Courts were aware of Trentin Ross’ whereabouts. On Trentin Ross’ Docket Report on Case Process at the Leon County Clerk of Courts, there are a number of attempts to service court notices to Trentin Ross. All of them state, “Notice Returned Unclaimed.” Therefore the question becomes, if they didn’t know where Trentin Ross was located, how did my son know where Trentin Ross was located? There is no city or physical address mentioned in the probable cause report used to charge my son with solicitation to commit murder. Among other reasons, this charge was trumped up to strip my son from communicating and visiting with me.
Captain McKissack, my son has been in solitary confinement for approximately 305 days; I don’t know what, if anything, you can do to get him out of solitary confinement or at least his visitation and phone privileges reinstated, but if there’s nothing that you can do, can you please advise me and/or my son what he can do. My son has told me that all of his requests and grievances to staff have been ignored.
Thank you for your time.