Pulling an oxygen tank in one hand and holding a cane in the other, Jill Ekstrom cried and trembled as she was sentenced to 18 months' probation, a $540 fine and $850 restitution to the Davis County Sheriff's Office. According to other reports, whoever, District Judge Ben Hadfield sentenced her to a year in jail, but suspended the term until the mental health evaluation is completed.
Her crime: Helping to reunite people separated by fraudulent state issued falsified birth certificates!
Ekstrom told reporters she took a plea deal because the case was affecting her family, not because she was guilty. She also said she accepted the plea because because of her health, because her public defender was overworked and the lack of money to hire better legal representation. She said she wrote a letter to the judge asking if she could do community service instead of jail so she could help people and turn her case into a positive experience.
Ekstrom - who called herself a "confidential intermediary" - was caught in a sting when a Davis County sheriff's deputy posed as an adopted child (sic) seeking a birth parent.
What a shame she was not able to stand up as a martyr for the unconscionable destruction of fmailies and the criminalization of certain people - those adopted - completing their genealogy as freely as those non-adopted.
Decades earlier Sandra Muser did just that! She stood fast and served her prison term and wrote "To prison With Love."
And when my friend and co-founder of the origins origins - started in NJ in 1980 - Lucy pare was likewise caught in a strong operation on camera, she said for national TV that she related her work to that of those who smuggled slaves through the underground. She said that, like them, she was practicing CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE and conscientious objection to unjust laws.
I am proud to know such civil rights fighters and sad that in 2008, this is still being prosecuted as a crime.