On Dec. 31, 2008, I received my first DWI. I have done my best to go through all the necessary legal steps, but from the beginning of this process, I was misrepresented by my court-appointed lawyer and mistreated by officials at the probation offices. The lawyer showed a lack of concern in my case and in defending his client, and did not properly explain to me state and local laws.
As a result, I was charged with a high level of punishment and was given 12 months of supervised probation after receiving a first-time DWI charge with no property or human damage. Just 30 days prior to the completion of my community service, the officers made the community service mandatory in their area while the documents were being transferred. The transference was slowed down two weeks due the inefficient work of the officials.
After the case was transferred to Henderson County, [someone] was appointed as my probation officer. Besides being no motivational help and a discouraging supervisor, the officer exhibited unprofessional and, at times, rude behavior toward me. Instead of answering certain questions or concerns regarding the enforced fees and documents lost in their office, I was specifically told it was not "my time and place" to ask questions.
I have always attempted to pay my court fees on time. Due to my probation officer's negligence, I was then charged extra fines for a failure to pay extra fees on time. I was humiliated by my probation officer when I asked her why nobody sent me the appropriate documents on time. The officer exhibited unethical conduct towards me when I tried to resolve the dilemma and resume communication by reminding me of my inferior position as a DWI holder. She failed to explain politely why she or another responsible person did not manage to process the documents within a given period of time.
Instead, I was told to "pay the fines, no questions asked" if I did not want to remain on the supervised probation for the rest of the year. I was treated disrespectfully and driven to tears. I am not appealing to anyone to reconsider the terms of my punishment — I am asking for an equally respectful relation from the supervising officer. I am hoping that this note will bring more attention to community needs and prevent certain community members from feeling segregated and abandoned, and will, consequently, prevent them from getting second- and third-time DWIs.
— Oxana Mak Folls