Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Conscience Calls

Heal A Hurting World

Dear Friends:

You and I are needed to rescue ourselves and our planet from selfishness and indifference. In the name of plain decency and simple fairness we can take a stand.

At this writing there is a grieving father in Florida in prison for twenty years for leaving his baby daughter in the back of the family car. A tragic mistake too often repeated, yes, but nonetheless a mistake. California, humanely, did not send its grieving father, a college professor, to prison nor even impose probation. But in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in the heat of the moment, Antonio Balta, an uneducated immigrant, was handed the stiffest sentence of any father in America, twenty years. He has already served over 6 years of the 20. Now is the time to free him, as governor Charlie Crist leaves the governorship.

The 2007 Florida law HB667 sponsored by Representative Joe Gibbons mandates a maximum of five years in prison for similar accidents. Mr. Gibbons agrees that Balta should be released.

How can we help? We can phone, email and/or write to Florida Governor Charlie Crist to request a review of Mr. Balta's too-severe sentence. We believe Antonio Balta should be released, since he is not a criminal, but a grieving father. He had no prison record and no drugs or alcohol were involved in his tragic mistake. In the more than 6 years he has been incarcerated he has a proven record as a model prisoner and a master carpenter. Please, dear friends, ask governor Crist to release Antonio Balta now, as he leaves the governorship.

Office of Governor Charlie Crist
State of Florida
The Capitol
400 S. Monroe St.
Tallahassee, FL 32399-000
Citizen Services Hotline: (850) 488-4441
Executive Office of the Governor Switchboard:
(850) 488-7146
[Office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time]

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