Friday, August 16, 2013
Innocent until Proven Guilty (The Andrea Sneiderman Case)
Innocent until proven guilty
Those words are the backbone of our judicial system. Over the last 12 plus months, I've learned that those words are just "words." I have learned that there are some people in this world that will do anything to bully others in order to improve their own fates. I have learned that while everyone who breathes has a heart, that some people only use theirs to pump oxygen and nothing else.
I have been very hesitant to write about my true feelings on the Andrea Sneiderman trial. Being a member of both Facebook and Twitter, I have read some very ugly comments about my friend Andrea. All of the animosity towards Andrea stems from her testifying a year ago in the Hemy Neuman trial. Andrea didn't have to testify that day but she did so in order to put away the man who killed her husband and left her children father-less. She did so to put away the man who harrassed her at work and even away from the office. She did so to make things right.
Andrea was upset when she was on the stand because the prosecution turned on her and instead of making this case about the man who killed her husband, they made it about her. Imagine going into your boss's office thinking you're getting a raise and preparing to come home and tell your significant other that things are going to be awesome. We're going to have more money, more security, etc. Then imagine walking into the boss's office and having him say "You're fired! Pack up your things." That is the same kind of 180 degree turn that took place for Andrea. I can totally understand why she was angry. BUT that is not the temperment that our friend Andrea normally displays. She was caught by surprise and I can't blame her for her anger. I can't blame her one bit. You saw 30 minutes of Andrea. I have seen 5 years worth of her. Actually 4 years since she has been under house arrest for 1 year for charges that were later dropped.
I have been a witness in the Sneiderman trial this time around and now that I'm not subpoenaed anymore after taking the stand, I've been able to catch up on this trial. Let me tell you what I know and how I feel. I know there will be a lot of "haters" who will want to bash me. I am supporting a friend and therefore I know that what I'm doing, while not popular, is right especially because I know that she is innocent.
1. Shayna Citron lied on the stand. She told 2 different stories. Read the transcripts and watch the videos.
2. There are people who are trying to take advantage of the spotlight in this case by trying to write a book and take advantage of every opportunity to be in front of the press. Shame on you. You know who you are.
3. My friend lost her husband and the father of her children. I can't believe some of the awful things people are writing. You didn't see Andrea after the loss of her husband. I witnessed her breakdown at the hospital, at the funeral and in several other places. He was the love of her life. I saw them together often and I have no doubt of that. What you didn't see were her behind-the-scene efforts to do charity work in Rusty's memory...for example the Russell J. Sneiderman sponsorship at my event, Wish for Wendy.
4. Just about every one of you who hates my friend has never met her. She's amazing. I wish you could meet Andrea and get to know the wonderful person that me and my Andrea know. Some of you who did not know her have compared her to Jodi Arias or Casey Anthony. How many people spoke on their behalf? How many people spoke on Andrea's? Exactly.
5. Andrea did not perjure herself. Shayna Citron did as did a few other players in this case. I hope that information eventually comes out.
6. This is not a movie. It shocks and pains me that people are cheering a wonderful mom and wife (now widow) to be put in prison.
7. Andrea Sneiderman's biggest crime was not going to HR. She wasn't just dealing with an awful man. She was dealing with a BOSS who was not only a stalker but also a murderer. Read the e-mails again but this time pretend to be someone who is scared to lose your job in a male-dominated employment world. Pretend that you wanted to let your husband live his dream. Pretend that you thought you could deal with the harrassment. I know one person who did not pretend and that was Andrea. Some of you will say you would have done things differently. Until you put on my friend's shoes, you don't know that. Please remember that she considered other options. See the testimony of her friends specifically my wife's.
8. Read the e-mails in this case again. Andrea felt guilty for holding this man's hand. Some of you have said she must be lying if that's what is making her repent. Then ask yourself, "What if she's telling the truth?" That would mean that she loves her husband so much and she is that honorable that this one small act (to some of us) was torturing this woman's heart and soul.
9. This trial has sadly changed my view of people. They have let the media, undermining attorneys and public opinion sway their own thoughts. If I could introduce each of you to Andrea Sneiderman and her children, you would stop thinking the way you do.
10. I want to conclude this by saying I'm sorry for the loss that the Sneiderman family in Ohio suffered. I can't even imagine. This is not Andrea's fault though. This was Hemy Neuman's fault. He deserves 100% of the blame. He was a stalker and a murderer and is spending every day of the rest of his life in prison and I still don't think that's enough. He took away Rusty Sneiderman, an amazing man, a passionate humanitarian and a loving father, son, brother and husband. I don't think there's anything Andrea could have done to prevent this man from taking Rusty's life.
Instead of saying "The Hell with Andrea and revenge for Rusty", maybe you should realize that freeing Andrea is what Rusty would have wanted. His children are already father-less. Are there really some of you who want them mother-less too? Can people be that cold?
Andrea Sneiderman is my friend and I stand by her and I pray that she is vindicated. Watch the trial again but this time ignore the media. Read the e-mails again and see if this woman was really the love-struck vixen the media portrayed or just a woman who was trying to handle a crazy stalker. There is absolutely no hard evidence in this case. Out of all the e-mails, did she ever respond, "I love you."? No! Did she ever tell this man that she was leaving her husband? No! Was there ever any sexual content in her e-mails? No! The prosecution used a perjurer as a witness. The prosecution used a real estate agent who had talked to a man who was in prison for being "Guilty BUT mentally ill." They had talked to a bartender who claimed they kissed but could not get other facts correct. There are also cases where hearsay occurred between Andrea and Rusty's father. The first day they asked, Andrea Sneiderman gave the Dunwoody Police Hemy Neuman's name. She did everything she was ASKED to do.
Whatever happened to "Innocent until proven guilty." Andrea Sneiderman should be found innocent of all charges.
On another note, I'm proud of my Andrea for testifying on Thursday. She was amazing. I'm proud of everyone who has done the "less popular" thing and openly supported our friend throughout this trial.
For those of you who have hated on Andrea Sneiderman, I was once you. NO, not in this case but 17 years ago. That year a security guard was blamed for the Olympic bombing in Atlanta. I, like you, hated on him only to find out later on that Richard Jewel had absolutely nothing to do with the Olympic bombing. It was instead Eric Robert Rudolph. Jewel later died at the young age of 44 and though he was cleared of all charges I doubt he ever healed from the way he was treated...and this was long before the social media revolution. To the family of the late Mr. Jewel, I say that I'm sorry.
For those of you who hate Andrea Sneiderman, I feel bad for you. You'll never have a chance to meet a wonderful person. You'll never have a chance to meet her or her children. I know they will grow up to be amazing people like their father AND THEIR MOTHER.
Today Andrea will meet her fate and I pray that she is found not guilty and that she has an opportunity to speak about the travesty of house-arrest for murder charges that were dropped just days before her actual trial. I hope she can tell people about a friend who betrayed her on the stand and was later caught in a lie. I hope she can tell people about how she was mistreated by those who should in actuality be looking out for her.
I hope she one day publishes this story and uses the money to send her children to school and pay off the debt that has been forced upon her.
If you know me, you know I have a good heart and I look out for every one of my friends. Andrea is very much included. I love her. I loved Rusty. I love her parents and her children. I won't stand by and see them raked by everyone on social networks and the media.
Andrea, I am here for you. Regardless of Friday's decision, you have a friend in me and my Andrea and so many others who will never, ever betray you or your trust.
Let's win this one for Rusty. I know that he is in your corner as well.
Innocent until proven guilty.