Friday, September 11, 2009

Details of Today's hearing

[Original post date: 09/11/09 10:40am PST]

Events today at the Hearing to set a re-trial date for william hamilton ayres for charges relating to the molestation of many young male children:

Most of my “quotes” in this will be close to verbatim, or a very near paraphrase. I was writing very quickly; my fingers still hurt.

There were three people present known to support the victims, including one juror from the first trial. There were two other people present, and appeared to be possibly reporters. One of the supporters had a bit of a conversation with ayres after the hearing. We will tell you a BIT about that BRIEFLY later today, but will not get into any detail, unless that person wants to tell the story from their perspective.

As of 8:36AM, ayres and his wife Solveig were already waiting on a bench around the corner from the courtroom. Ayres has a new walker. It is the sporty model with a seat and four large castor wheels to allow him to zip around between court engagements.

At right around 9am, the Judge entered, and Defense attorney Jonathan  McDougall introduced himself as ayres’ “substitute” representation, and declared that all of the appropriate signatures from ayres, Weinberg, and McKowan were on file. McDugall is a former DA, and his personality is somewhat brash, a bit chatty, and seems like he’ll be prone to interrupt at will. He claimed to not have come very much up to speed yet, and that he had had “Brief discussions” with both Weinberg and McKowan, but not much more than that, and then with a bit of a complaining demeanor exclaimed that his “investigator had picked up six boxes of material” relating to the trial. I wonder if those boxes included some reading material? Perhaps a picture book or two for him to peruse whilst enjoying an evening at home.

[Update 9/11/09 5:30pm NOTE: There has been some confusion created by the San Mateo County Times. Earlier today, they reported that McDougall was not paid for by ayres, that he had accepted [the San Mateo county equivalent of] a "public defender." They have since changed their article, and it now reads: 
"Ayres has retained McDougall, which means the doctor is paying the attorney to defend him"
They have further confused the matter by posting the ORIGINAL article here at a later time yesterday evening. (but not later than the latest update at the original site.) I think that the most current reporting, that ayres has RETAINED McDougall is probably correct, but still, this seems to me to be the type of detail that would be difficult to report incorrectly.] [Further Update, 9/12/2009: As of 2:12pm PST, they have updated the site, and it now matches the Mercury News posting, and the first one that I linked to (contracostatimes) appears to no longer be working. To wit: According to their research, ayres IS PAYING for his new representation.]

McDougall wanted a four to six week continuance to try to come up to speed before they start talking about setting a date.

He promptly (and brashly) asked for a trial date of April with a “February readiness hearing.”  You could feel the litany of excuses about coming up-to-speed welling up over on his side of the courtroom, and they started to spill out, but the Judge interrupted him.

“This trial is about ayres, not about you.” The Judge stated that she did NOT think April is a reasonable date, and that the court is NOT obliged to allow the defense to come up to speed [to the extent of an entirely new investigation], in this case especially, as it is a retrial, and it was NOT the court’s decision to change representation mid-stream. She stated that he should NOT have to start the investigation all over again, and implied that his come-up-to-speed time should be MINIMAL, and that anything otherwise was unreasonable.

McDougall then stated that he felt that under the case law, Weinberg’s strategy was not necessarily appropriate. (The implication that he may indeed need to start the investigation all over again. And employ a better strategy.)

Judge Freeman interrupted him again and said: that his “Request for a readiness conference in February suggests to me that you are ALREADY PLANNING a continuance.  She then asked for McKowan’s input.

McKowan stated that she DOES want to have a “FIRM DATE TODAY,” and she said that she does agree that McDougall should have SOME time to come up to speed, but that she NEEDS TO SET A DATE TODAY.

Judge Freeman indicated concern that if she sets a date today, that McDougall will come back and say that it was not a date that he agreed upon.  She suggested that she was willing to continue the decision on a court date until as late as October 2nd, and that she would expect him to come in at that point with a firm and reasonable request for a trial date.

McDougall: “I don’t know if I will be ready in a month to pick a date that I’ll be ready.”

Judge Freeman then tossed out October 9 as a date, stating that date was in line with the four to six weeks that he had requested.  She said “I will expect by that time you will be able to map out a strategy that gets [you a good date.]”

Judge Freeman warned McDougall that she can NOT postpone the October 9th date, and that if he needs to change it, he will have to call the court very early so that the new date can be scheduled to occur BEFORE October 9th. She also told him that she expects to have a reasonable estimate for the amount of time he will require for the trial.

In all, it was not an overly surprising day.  The DA clearly wanted a firm date, but as usual, the court seems to have its hands tied with the delay tactics for which ayres’ representation is so skilled.

It did seem that the Judge is aware that the ENTIRE strategy of the defense at this point is to delay and continue until a time when either everyone forgets what the trial is about, or ayres is dead, and that THAT’s the expertise that ayres is paying for. She seemed to be not as willing to put up with the nonsense, and clearly gave the impression she thinks that setting a trial date as late as APRIL is fantastically unbelievable nonsense.

[Update: September 11, 2009, 9:30pm PST]:
After the hearing was finished, a small group of us were standing outside discussing various aspects of the justice system,  when ayres went scooting by over to the place where he waits for his wife to come pick him up after one of the plethora of court appearances he makes.

It is fairly well documented that ayres and Solveig both enjoy approaching victims and their families and friends and greeting them cheerfully, asking them if they’re Scientologists, or other even more bizarre questions. One of our group was greeted cheerfully by ayres, and she decided that she’d take him up on his conversational opener, and went over to talk to him.

The conversation was not surprisingly pretty off-axis.  Our understanding is that she asked him questions relating to how it is that he could engage in such behaviors, and he kept replying something to the effect of: “I’m a psychiatrist.” After awhile he began to move away from her, and asked her to stop talking to him.  Everyone agreed that this was odd, since he was the one who approached her, with a friendly greeting.  Soon Solveig arrived with the vehicle, and got out to see what was going on. Even with the dark sunglasses, she is capable of exuding an attitude of vapid confusion, with just a hint of malice. Must be all that theatre experience.

Ayres then saw a San Mateo Sheriff’s Deputy walking by, and frantically started to flag him down. “Help, Help, There’s a WOMAN talking to me!” was written all over the desperate look on his face.  The Deputy gave him one of those “Get a life” looks, and at that point, our conversationalist friend began to walk away, and ayres gestured to the Deputy that everything was OK now, the woman wasn’t going to hurt him. The Deputy looked way and rolled his eyes.

Our conversationalist friend seems to be one of those people who live for the moment, grabbing the bull by the horns at every opportunity.

I have to admit that for me, today, the hearing ended with an exuberant laugh.

It’s a good thing. 

Also wanted to mention that Trials & Tribulations also had some commentary on our hearing today!


  1. Whiney performs the final sacrifice for his client—withdrawl from the case.
    Bet he cashes the checks just the same though ...

  2. Ayes is going to croak, isn't there a law that says if one is ready to croak things should move along more swiftly!

  3. The San Mateo County times reports that McDougall was appointed through the public defender program indicating Ayres is flat broke?????

  4. I don't think there is a "Hurry up, the guilty party and witnesses are all old" section in the criminal law.

    Yes, SM County Times is saying that he's a public defender. I don't think you have to be broke though, in order to take the public defender. You just have to say you can't afford adequate representation, and you'd like the public defender please.

    Who knows... Maybe ayres is still paying Weinberg to "Consult" in the case with funds tucked neatly away. Sure would be handy to look broke for all of those pending civil cases. Plus you get the added advantage of appearing to have "new" representation! Delay, Delay, Delay...

  5. Well then who paid for the new Cadillac of walkers?

    I bet Ayres used what little money came in for his legal defense to buy the new walker.

  6. The San Mateo County Times has now corrected their earlier story, and is reporting that McDougall has been retained by ayres, that he is NOT appointed as a public defender.

    It didn't sound that way to me, as he introduced himself to the court, and told the judge that he had filed all of the proper paperwork to substitute for Weinberg. But then, I don't know much about how the court functions, with regard to that kind of thing, and I didn't even think to ask, and probably wouldn't have asked even if I had thought about it.

    Although.. I have to say: it does seem odd that the SM County Times would first report it one way, and then the other... This seems like something that should be fairly cut-and-dried. DID THEY ask anyone at first, or just make some kind of assumption? Or is the new story the incorrect story? Hard to figure, and really quite strange.

    I also don't like the fact that the press keeps saying: "the doctor's practice of giving physical and genital exams to his male patients." Why can't they say that the (alleged) doctor ALLEGED that he was giving exams?

    I don't want to get into a lengthy debate about bias in the press, but I see it as clear bias against the victims. After all: the press seems to feel obligated to state that the victims "allege" whatever allegations that they allege... Isn't making the implication that the victims could be making it up tantamount to accusing them of lying about the commission of a crime? (Which is itself a crime.)

    Therefore, they should either stop using the word "allege" or apply it fairly across the board.

    Here's their story:
    San Mateo County Times

    Also from reading the story, it looks like ayres' money is subsidizing the defense of Alex Youshock, the High School pipe bomber, as McDougall is Alex's public defender.

    I AM glad that we have a system of public defense that provides this level of support, God knows when one of us might need it, so I'll just leave it at that...

  7. Perhaps these types of cases fall under the Freedom of Information Act Requests. We can ask the County how much money you can have and qualify for a public defender. If the County pays I want to know how much, how do you qualify (lack of funds), is the application public record which discloses the assets of the the child molester (not alleged)?

    I want information that is public!

  8. Ayres is indigent:

    Since 1969, the San Mateo County Bar Association has, by contract with the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, provided attorneys to represent indigent criminal defendants, juveniles, and persons on the mental calendars. Nowhere else in the state has a local bar association taken on such a task.

    Website that talks about this program, still exists the dude who took Ayres case is getting like $65for attending a hearing!

    The budget is really low for this program and even worse now. I will have to research how indigent you have to be.

    There is no difference except the name of the program....flat broke.

  9. NOTE: There has been some confusion created by the San Mateo County Times. Earlier today, they reported that McDougall was not paid for by ayres, that he had accepted [the San Mateo county equivalent of] a "public defender." They have since changed their article, and it now reads:

    "Ayres has retained McDougall, which means the doctor is paying the attorney to defend him"

  10. San Mateo County has a private defender system, meaning that attorneys in private practice can apply to be qualified to be appointed to represent defendants who cannot afford an attorney. They are paid by the case, rather than being paid a salary, as public defenders are in other counties. Jonathan McDougall is a participant in the private defender program in San Mateo County, but also has a private practice.

    There is no formula as to what a defendant’s level of income and assets have to be before he or she qualifies for appointed counsel; it is left to the discretion of the court. The defendant’s financial declaration is kept confidential.

  11. OMG, DS that is the funniest thing I have ever seen, practically an altercation on the Beast and his new walker!

    The thing is so sturdy he could surely shield himself with it, oh geez, I am have a coughing attack which happens when something is so appropriately funny!

    Perhaps this will teach that bastard once and for all it is not OK for him and Mrs. Beast to give waves and smirks etc.

    I would have loved to see the Beast tackled and laying like a beached whale on the pavement while Solveig arrives in the Honda, help us, help us, my 280 pound man was flung to the ground by a 125 pound woman.......

    I hope this is sufficient to wish the Beast a lovely day at court!

    I hope the idiot learned something.

  12. I know.. at first I was thinking:

    "OK... this is a dubious venture, at best."

    Then I was thinking. Wow... I need to get a bit more moxie: this is kind of interesting.

    Then, when I was able to read the expressions on their faces, I just started laughing out loud. The deputy was probably more worried about my maniacal laughter than that mean lady.

    I don't know if you remember this: in the airports, the Harri Krishnas used to try to get people to buy flowers. They'd send one or a pair of members up to people who were standing there by themselves, and pester the person until they bought a flower.

    THEN someone came up with a great idea: they began handing out little metal clicky "frogs" at the airport. When you were approached by someone with a flower you started clicking your frog. If you heard a frog, you were supposed to swarm to it, clicking yours too... The Harri Krishnas were freaked out by the number of people they were forced to confront.

    Well... maybe I digress...

  13. Ayres has gone on record of telling every psychiatrist and child psychiatrist in California that he was trained to give physicals to boys at Judge Baker

    Is the DA's office going to call anyone from Judge Baker to say he's lying?
    Or are they going to repeat their lines from the first trial that this was "accepted medical practice?

  14. I think this issue certainly lets anybody know, if ayres waves or otherwise says anyhting he certainly can open the door for conversation. He may not like what he get backs or the line of questioning.

    If in this case he said "I am a psychiatrist", I would have said "no you are not they took your medical license away, what you are and always were was a pedophile."

    Sounds like he is using his same old lame excuse.

    But seeing Soveig go get the Honda and pull up, ready to bolt out and get right in there looks funny as heck. ayres can always count on Solveig to be the MAN about things!

  15. The San Mateo County Times as of this morning is still reporting that Ayres has a Public Defender.

    That was updated last night at 7:25 pm.

    It does seem to make sense since McDougall participates in the program.

  16. To Anonymous at September 12, 2009 9:32 AM:

    I believe that is a re-feed of the earlier post on one of the other versions of the insidebayarea sites.

    That post that you're looking at is the same text as the Friday morning 10:49am post, and includes the same typos and errors that I recall seeing yesterday morning. Also, the article is VERY brief, as was the first post yesterday.

    Look at this link:
    Mercury News which was the same article as the one you're looking at, but updated at 3pm yesterday, and then look at this one: which also was the same original article as the one you're referring to, but updated at 3pm, and then AGAIN last night at 8pm.

    ALL are by the same reporter.

    I think that the "San Mateo County Times" version of the "Insidebayarea" pages simply took the early version when they finally got around to posting for the first time on that page last night.

    Google news searches turned up the contracostatimes version long before any of the other stories (by the same reporter) and the contracostatimes version is the one that kept getting updated during the day.

    I don't know what lead them to report the "public defender" statement early yesterday, but the "retained" version persisted through at least 3 revisions yesterday on the most-up-to-date site.

  17. Also note: sometimes that insidebayarea link does not work. If you click it a few times, it does work. Here's the link again:

  18. And also note: on the "San Mateo County Times" link version, that shows the FIRST post date at 7:25pm, NOT that it was updated later in the evening... consistent with the theory that they grabbed the wrong feed when they went to post it on that one finally.

  19. Ayres is a control freak, according to his former partners. He prefers women to be meek and mild and non-confrontational. He doesn't like to be challenged.That's why he chose meek Solveig and Etta Bryant and Thea Leavitt as friends.He wouldn't know how to handle a strong woman like the woman who confronted him yesterday. She clearly made him feel inadequate and exposed his weak sense of self...

    Too bad there weren't more strong women in San Mateo challenging him about his "physicals" over the years.

  20. I think one of the most stunningly interesting (to me) things about the confrontation yesterday is that ayres CLEARLY was feeling overwhelmed and at uncomfortable with talking to a woman who was not in agreement with him. You could easily read that in his body language even from a distance.

    He is not socially adapted to have conversations with ADULTS, and particularly not adult women.

    This kind of inadequate adult socialization, as well as his taunting behavior to victims and their families in the solemn setting of the courtroom is quite common to people who are sociopathic child molesters. Much of his testimony on the stand during his first trial is also indicative of these disorders.

    I have long believed that he is a sociopath as well as a pedophile, but these stark little examples that keep peeking through are still quite a profound revelation to me.

  21. DS. I was thinking about Ayres’ little attempt at being charming and was going to write pretty much what you wrote.

    Makes me wonder just how rehearsed his “presentations” were to survivors’ parents. Did he have a canned presentation for each “disorder” and because human behavior is pretty predictable, manage to control parents enough that they didn’t think anything was amiss? Because yes, I agree he is utterly socially inept. How did he fool so many people for so long?

    Obviously he chose to become a predator of young males because to “relate” to them, he got to play with the models and toys and not get into anything too deep. Just get a kid talking, let them think you are their buddy and ally, and voila! Drop your pants, this is normal, I’m a doctor, oh but don’t tell anyone, okay?

    When you talk to a shrink, doesn’t the patient do most of the talking anyway?

  22. From the articulate description provided by DS, I am tempted to conclude that Mr. McD is in way over his head, which I find encouraging. Time for popcorn, imo.

  23. After looking at the photo I am even more convinced Ayres new walker is a prop!

    In one photo he has his hand off the walker and is casually leaning on the cement pole there and his legs are crossed. Meaning he can maintain quite some balance! He doesn't even need both feet flatly planted on the ground. So what exactly is the walker doing?

    He doesn't need that walker at all. Yeah, I can also see he upgraded to one with the giant tires and you can roll it easier, probably has a built in tire pressure monitoring system!

    What a croc....load of (you know)!

  24. Remember when practically the first words out of Ayres' mouth when he testified was that Freudian slip" I'm not manl."? He corrected it, but I believe his id which which he's kept a lid on for so long, has finally been uncorked.

    It's so obvious that Ayres has never felt like a man.

    Bullies are weak inside and generally pick on smaller prey. Ayres' victims tended to be small and undersized for their age and many had been already been bullied at school. Many had already been molested before.

    Ayres wasn't man enough to pick on someone his own size and age.

    Over the years his mannerisms have become more effiminate. Hence the fluttery Blanche DuBois hand gestures when he testied, and his lisping Truman Capote falsetto.

    It's clear strong women who challenge him scare him to death. That's because they expose how weak he really is.

    But because he's so timid and weak inside, he also can't handle confrontational man like lawyer Bob Tobin. Remember that freakish whiney imitation he did of Tobin during the testimony? He blamed that big bad man Tobin for making him get all flustered and making him say the wrong things about his physical exams of boy. He acted like a five year old who got caught and then blamed it on someone else.

    And when the confrontational woman challenged him, he was too weak to handle her himself and had to call for a daddy/cop.

    He's completely infantile. But he's a sociopath too.

  25. Word is that Solveig did the hatchet work on Ayres' enemies, according to some who used to travel in the same psychiatric circles. Solveig was the one who went around badmouthing victims at medical conventions... She does act like a man.

  26. To me with that walker, Ayres looks like he's behind bars already.

  27. To the poster on the 13th at 12:20pm:

    I disagree with you that Ayres has become more effeminate over the years.

    For a long time he has had those fluttery hand motions lots of lots of years,

    and his voice has had falsetto for as long as I remember.

    It comes out more when he is scared by someone, probably he wasn't brought up right. I bet that strange way of acting rubbed off on his kids.

  28. Caligirl--Weinberg left the case because there were no checks to cash--at least not in the required amount.

  29. There is an old saying:

    Money talks, disappoint walks!

    Weinberg wore out a pair of shoes.