Not guilty and no record after probation

Feds drop charges, Lipsen pleas

Bryon Garrison
Gun butt? or some Velcro when she used her neck to beat the armed officer. (Courier Photo: Tom Cochran)
Gun butt? or some Velcro when she used her neck to beat the armed officer. (Courier Photo: Tom Cochran)

Ilana Lipsen is an American Jew who had the audacity to run a vape shop in Alpine Texas called The Purple Zone.

The case is an example of how justice is not for the poor or even the moderately well to do. If you want justice in America prepare to be divested of all you have in that pursuit. Or prepare to be shamed out of town. It is obvious that the authorities did not have the evidence to convict Lipsen.

With Lipsen's plea authorities are getting what they need, a chance to save face. What they don't understand is that abuse of power leaves an imprint of fear on the community that was subjected to it. The case is not going away. The authorities that were involved in this case are going to suffer severe scrutiny as the facts continue to be laid out by the national press.

It is clear that Lipsen plead, when she did not have to plead. If she went to trial, she would have to spend a minimum of $25,000 and her entire family would be subject to the prosecutorial arm of the federal government. The unlimited resources to persecute citizens is the sad state of our courts. 

Lipsen had a tough decision to make. She did not have to become a martyr for freedom. She saved herself some money by taking a plea bargain. She has an elderly mother who will probably live a little longer now that she doesn't face federal charges. Yes, in exchange for her slap on the wrist her mother and sister do not face federal charges. That is called extortion. The feds had no case but they did have the ability to hurt her family. If they had a case they wouldn't have made the deal.

The authorities on all levels needed this case to go away. First you have a judge requiring a confession before a defendant could get bail. Then you have a defendant allegedly getting beat up by authorities. You have a raid done without a warrant and on the wrong house. You have witnesses to the alleged beating. You have negative test results on raid after raid. You have under cover stings that produce no evidence. You have personal relationships that cross over the line and could be cause for disbarring. You have the Washington Post, Texas Monthly, Texas Observer and Fox News focusing the spotlight on the situation and laughing at the incompetence. You have publishers and editors getting fired for printing the truth. What an avalanche, I mean Landslide! You have authorities rewriting articles for reporters. You have the FBI investigating the alleged beating.

In the end they will leave Lipsen alone. She has agreed to go and live in Houston and pay some nominal court costs. She will be on probation and all charges against her family will be dropped. No guilty plea will go on her record and the feds can have a big headline that reads Lipsen pleads guilty. (wonder who wrote that?)

Lipsen's business will close and she will leave Alpine, which is what local authorities wanted in the first place. Lesson: Don't make the wrong people in West Texas mad.

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