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This is how the Trial went

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Charlottesville Circuit Court

This is how the Trial went is an account from two CWCki Forum users, Cyan and Indigo, on what happened during the 10 July 2012 arraignment of Chris and Barb in regards to the 28 October 2011 charges. The text presented here is as it was posted on the CWCki Forums on 10 July, with slight modifications for wiki styling and linking.

Cyan's account

Imma be nice and give you guys a darker colour for this wall of text.

Sorry for taking so long. Youtube was being Autistic and couldn't get a minute-long video uploaded very quickly...

First I'd like to prove we were there. The video isn't that exciting, just a newspaper with the date, the courthouse, and a little greeting for you guys. We are keeping ourselves anonymous. I know some of you somehow came under the impression that the video might be of Chris or the Trial. Sorry. Between being called a troll and an attention whore, I really just don't feel like getting arrested for you guys. =T

Anyways, our little drive-by video. (No, the driver isn't holding the camera. We aren't Chris.) [1] (dead link, please replace)

Better detail of the newspaper. My camera's shitty and it made the date fuzzy. Luckily it's still easily recognizable as the same newspaper. [2]

And a screenshot of passing the courthouse, so you can clearly see where we are. Should be at 15-16 sec [3]

The Trial.

It was quite unlike what the majority speculated. There were some humorous moments, Chris got to speak, and both he and Barbra pleaded guilty.

Barbra was the first to go. When the Judge began asking the usual questions, (such as "do you fully understand the charges you face?") Barbra asked if she could have Bell answer for her. The judge wasn't very patient with her, and Barbra seemingly attempted to protest. The Judge sharply told her, "These questions are between you and me, you have to answer the questions yourself."

Barbra simply answered "Yes" to all of his standard questions, plead guilty, and sat back down. On an unrelated note, she seems to have lost some weight. She isn't a very large woman.

The prosecution got to have a speech before it was Christian's turn to take the stand. I can't remember everything they said, but the important parts were that Snyder didn't want Chris and Barb to be stuck with a felony charge, there was another witness that called the police, (the manager of the nearby Staples), and that he hoped that the plea bargain would be accepted by the judge.

Bell took a turn to speak, and wanted to formally introduce Chris to the Judge. He surprisingly introduced Chris as "High-functionally Autistic" which is an outdated term and not part of the Autism spectrum. He also briefly told the Judge about Chris and Barbra's lives, and tried to explain the situation with the game place from the Chandlers' perspective. At one point he called Chris an "Adult-autistic-child", which Chris scowled at. He also made note that if the plea bargain was accepted, Chris would be assimilated into the world, taught how to contribute to society, and would get psychiatric evaluations and treatment. Chris mumbled something and seemed really distressed by all of this.
Courtroom sketch by Cyan

When Chris was brought to the stand, he stress-sighed first thing. He then repeated his mother's earlier question, in hopes to get Bell to speak for him. The judge shot him down the same way he did his mother, and proceeded to ask the questions.

This is where things got amusing.

"Is your full name Christian Weston Chandler?"

"Yes, but my birthname is Christopher Weston Chandler. Now it's Christian."

"So your full name is Christopher Weston Chandler?"

"N-no. My name is Christian. My birth name was Christopher, but we changed it years ago."

"Do you understand that you are to be charged the court fees, should you accept the plea bargain?"

"Yes. My mother will be taking care of that."

"Do you understand that you are to pay Michael John Snyder for his medical expenses?"

"Yes, but I don't think that THIEVING LIAR deserves a red cent!"

The Judge dismissed this.

And finally, when asked if he willingly pleaded guilty and was his own conscious choice, Chris hesitated for a good five seconds.

"...Yes."

There was more discussion from both Bell and the prosecution, mostly trying to convince the Judge to accept the guilty plea. The Judge did, and Barbra Chandler and Christian Chandler were both found guilty of fail to stop at the scene of an accident, and Barbra was charged with assault on an officer. Barbra was sentenced with community service and two years of probation, and Chris was sentenced with community service, one year of probation, and must comply with all psychiatric treatment and evaluation. If he fails to do so, he faces jail time.

There's more details jotted down, and Indigo remembers more than I do, so you can expect a more detailed post from her. Probably on page six. I'll update with some detail of the October 28 incident (assuming the CWCki doesn't have it) tomorrow when I find my notes.

A few answers to other questions:

  • If I paid the bill that comes with phones that access the internet every month, I probably would never have left-over money, and couldn't afford this trip. Also, like hell I'm taking my laptop to VA to leave it unattended in my car while I sat in a courthouse. (My car is also not equipped with internet access, I don't know of many cars that are.)
  • I couldn't get photos of Chris or his car. The Charlottesville area around the courthouse is actually quite busy, and there aren't any parking lots adjacent to the courthouse itself. Chris and Barbra could have parked anywhere. Besides, getting photos or video of him or his car could have put us at risk of being charged for stalking. The court members KNOW of his internet infamy.
  • The Charlottesville Circuit Court doesn't keep real-time transcripts, and the ones they make upon request cost money. If somebody else wants to contact them and get the transcripts, I'm sure they'll eventually have them available.

EDIT!: I totally forgot that most of you guys don't know this. Snyder did get hit with the Chandler vehicle. Not once, but twice. Once by Chris, and then again by Barb when they switched places. That's why they both have the fail-stop felony charge.

Indigo's account

As Cyan writes the master post, I will type this out: my account of what occurred. We felt that both of us should describe it, as we both noticed different details just as we noticed the same ones. When put together, both of our stories should give you a fairly clear image of the trial.

Initial Observations

Our dear CWC looked absolutely miserable to be there, his face set in an almost cartoonish pout. He was only sporting some of his now-signature Tomgirl look: the hair and make-up (restricted to light lipstick and eyeshadow) were present, but the clothes he sported were slacks and an unremarkable flannel shirt. I would probably be right in guessing that his subdued physical appearance was at the insistence of his lawyer.

Barbara looked as though she had lost significant weight, and another older woman was with them. ((It's been confirmed that she's Rocky.))

The Pleas

This may surprise you, but Barbara and Chris did the smart thing for once and pleaded guilty . . . ah, but that's not quite all. Their lawyer explained that while they were choosing this course of action, they maintain that their version of events (their TRUE and HONEST account of what occurred between themselves and Mr. Snyder) is the accurate story. In other words: "we're guilty but not really lol."

The judge has the option of denying this type of plea-bargaining based on what occurs next. Keep this in mind.

Barbara's Turn

This portion was mostly unworthy of note, aside from Barbara nearly getting uppity at the start. She calmed down pretty quickly, though, and conducted herself rather politely through the judge's questions.

Meanwhile, Chris was busy completely disassociating himself from the situation. He fiddled around with his sunglasses (making a few noises when they collided with the table every now and then), played with his ring, and didn't seem like he was paying much attention to dialogue he probably ought to be listening to.

Chris's Turn

Before Chris had his turn to speak, their lawyer stepped in to provide context to Chris's situation. It's all stuff we've heard before, though there were a couple of quotes worth noting:

  • He used "high-functioning autistic" to describe Chris, most likely at Chris's request. This is no longer used as any sort of technical term, so it sounded rather silly coming from a professional lawyer.
  • Not long afterward, he goes on to describe Chris as an "adult autistic child." This drew a notable reaction out of Chris. He went so far as to change his facial expression from severe pouting to as close to outrage as he dared show; he nearly interrupted his lawyer, but must have thought better of it and quieted whatever he was going to say into an intelligible mumble.

Finally, it was Chris's turn to answer the routine questions given by the clerk and the judge. Chris, due to not paying attention earlier, asked if his lawyer could answer on his behalf. He was met with a reminder that no, in fact, you have to answer these questions all by yourself. Perish the thought.

After the clerk finished her segment, Chris had the gall to interrupt the judge just as he was getting started with his round of questioning. Despite the rough start, Chris got the hint and kept his responses to "yes" and "no" and did fairly well answering them quickly . . . that is, until he was asked if he had pled guilty completely of his own free will. There was a LONG pause before he finally remembered that the "correct" answer was yes. Looks like he needed more rehearsal time to me.

Oh, and that's not all! Things got interesting when Mr. Snyder was brought up . . .

Chris was asked something along the lines of, "do you understand that, by pleading guilty, you MUST pay the agreed amount to Mr. Snyder in damages?" Chris confirmed that he understood . . . and then went on to say that, in HIS opinion, "that thieving liar doesn't deserve a red cent!" Oh, yes, folks, I kid you not: our beloved Mayor of CWCville committed public slander in a COURT OF LAW.

I expected a harsh reprimand for such egregiously bad behavior (or, perhaps, even for his plea bargain to be denied) but alas, the judge pretty much let it go and continued on. Welp, another free pass for Chris, brought to you by The Autism Card!

The Aftermath

The rest is pretty straight forward: the prosecutor, defense lawyer, and judge discuss the conditions that Barbara and Chris must comply with, whilst Chris gives an exaggerated, disapproving shake of his head whenever Mr. Snyder is brought up.

At one point, the lawyer suggests that Chris could start giving back to the community in an effort to reintegrate himself into society. The look on Chris's face is priceless.

((That's pretty much it. We couldn't obtain transcripts, as they don't provide them on the day of a trial if the trial in question is not a major trial or an appeal. If you want to obtain your own copies, you'll have to send in a request to the Circuit Court of Charlottesville and pay a fee.))

Chris's confirmation

On a 11 July 2012 Facebook note, Chris confirmed their account:

Wednesday July 11, 2012

Yep, the trolls know most of what went on in the court room yesterday; it is confirmed that two of them were in there, going by the online names of "Cyan" and "Indigo". Rob recognized them both, and informed them that their trolling stupid presence is noted and known. I have also found their transcribed, personal reports on the Cwcki Forum, and they have a 23 second video on YouTube of them driving by the courthouse and holding up the day's "New York Times" paper, titled "CyanIndigo", same as their account name. And they quoted me in calling Snyder "thieving and lying"; I had actually said "Bribing and lying".

Anyway, we ALL know of them, and they will be brought in regardless of currently being in Or outside of Virginia or even the United States of America.

While Cyan and Indigo confirmed that Bell did indeed confront them during the course of the trial, it should be noted that their only actions were to attend a court session that was open to the public and then report on the proceedings, neither of which are illegal.

Footnotes

As thanks for Rob's defense succeeding in keeping both him and his mother out of jail (which could have been devastating consequences for Chris in the long run), Chris called him a "wuss" on Facebook, either out of his anger for being called an "adult autistic child" in court (keep in mind that earlier on, Chris committed public slander), or for not entertaining Chris's bullshit when the latter demanded that the trolls who attended his court case be found and locked up.