Innocence for James equals justice for Devin.

A blog from the family of James & Devin

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Parole hearing 2019

Here we are again, 5 years later.  James has been wrongfully incarcerated for 1620 days.  On June 19th, James met with the parole board for his first hearing.  While we were not allowed to attend his hearing, we gathered in close proximity to the prison for prayer and support.   Armed with the help of his excellent parole attorney, a stellar parole package, the 3 associates degrees he's earned while in prison, and hundreds of letters from friends and family to board on his behalf, the board still denied him.  They gave him a date 5 years from now.  While this isn't the worst case scenario, we expected a denial of no more than 3 years given his exemplary behavior in prison.  But, no surprise, our judicial system is flawed and has failed us again.  They want to hear an admittance of guilt for a crime he did not commit.  They want a lie!

We believe this again has been propelled forward by the mother of Devin.  Although totally optional and frankly unnecessary, she chose to come to his hearing to give her ''victim impact speech.''  The irony, when James and Devin are the only victims of this heinous situation, both paying for crimes not committed by them.   But in she came, guns blazing, assassinating his character and blatantly lying, just as she did at trial.  Though it would seem her falsehoods have taken on a whole new life of their own, each being more scarcely credible than the last.   She said James was violent, a monster and in regular bar fights when they dated.  Anyone that knows James scoffs and laughs at the absolute absurdity!  James has never been in a bar fight, or any other violent physical altercation.  He has no record, and no history of violence.   Never once while out on bail, during trial or during the parole hearing did James exhibit one form of violent outburst or anger towards Katy or her family, even with all the venom that they perpetuated.  Any person that has anger issues would've lashed out but he always conducted himself with a calm demeanor.  Amazing, given that kind of pressure would break most.

We're realizing that Katy will say or do anything to continue her smear campaign.  Moreover, we're coming to the conclusion that perhaps Devin's injuries (stroller falls, lack of medical care) were not all that happened on her watch and perhaps not accidental.  When someone has to go to such extremes to embellish and slant the truth, generally they're trying to conceal something.   The red flags were clear months before Devin was injured when he came to James' home with blood blisters on his back, and a black eye after a trip to Redding with his mother, where she had been arrested for driving under the influence.  She was regularly cavalier with Devin's health, so it was no surprise when James had to rush Devin to the hospital because he'd had a pneumonia that had been untreated while in the care of his ''mother.''  The list goes on.  What was going on in that home?  We believe that we're dealing with a narcissistic sociopath.   She seems to enjoy the attention (Munchhausen syndrome by proxy) and knows very well of James' innocence, but feels no guilt or remorse for the deceit she's perpetuated to save her own hide, though it has harmed both her son and his innocent father.   Given Devin's tragic disabilities, due to her carelessness, he certainly could've used a nurturing and involved father in his life, but she's done everything in her power to see that that didn't happen.  She simply will not take responsibility for the injury that many believe she caused, accidental or otherwise.

James will not allow the situation or these diabolical people to derail him.  He is relentless in his quest for freedom.  He continues to honor his son by telling the truth, even if it means sitting in prison forever.  I'm incredibly proud of the grace and integrity that he displays in his everyday life.  He has not allowed this evil to harden him and continues to choose to serve others to the best of his ability.

So, what now?! We fight! James has an army of people standing behind him.  Hundreds of friends and family, multiple job offers and housing offers upon his release, a new career awaiting him with his degrees.  Thousands from churches around the country praying for his freedom and his eventual reuniting with Devin. 

Many of the programs that help wrongfully convicted people will not step in until appeals and parole have been denied.  The California Innocence project has picked up his case and is currently investigating it.  This is GREAT news! This means that they haven't denied his case.   We will also be in contacts with Loyola Law and the many other media contacts and exonerees we have connections with.   James situation is like so many others convicted of Shaken baby or head trauma.  His trial was based on junk science and hysteria, rather than facts.   Documentaries like ''The Syndrome" explain all  of the particulars and show the significant impact of stroller falls in childhood head injuries.  From esteemed neurosurgeon, Dr, Neissan;  "It is impossible that this injury occurred in the 20-30 minutes that James had his son, because of the nature and timing of such an injury,''  An injury like this takes hours-days to develop.  Our experts believe the amount of swelling that caused the stroke that James experienced when Devin's health failed was caused by the multiple falls he took while with his Mother and her family, and then being jostled around on rides at Disneyland. 

When we look at this clearly, Devin was in the care of his mother for 4 days prior to being dropped off.  Suspiciously, she would not allow James to see Devin those days, until she hastily and unexpectadly decided to drop him off that evening.   She did not drop off a well baby, but like a bad game of hot potato, the last one holding the bag is it!

Sometimes we don't understand God's timing, but justice always has a way of making it's way back around and that's why Katy and her family continue to perpetuate their lies.  They're terrified of being found out.  They know that when James is out, and he will be eventually, he's gonna blow the lid off this whole thing and expose them for what they really are, wolves in sheeps clothing!  Get ready, we haven't even begun fighting.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

A successful turnout!

Hello all, We feel blessed to be able to say that while James was in fact sentenced on March 4th, we had a very successful day! I'm going to include an email from one of James' supporters to give you the feel of how the day played out:

 Hi all, Thank you for your prayers. As briefly as I can tell you, the judge denied our attorney's request to allow him to contact and ask the jurors what made them believe Jamie was guilty. Therefore, he went ahead with the sentencing. Being convicted of those two charges, I believe, carried a mandatory "Life" sentence. However, the judge did say, he could be eligible for parole in 7 years. (That sure beats "Life without parole," which was also an option) The attorney explained to us later that, realistically, parole boards always deny the first couple of requests a prisoner submits. If that happens, he could possibly be released in 9 years or so. The hearing was set for 8:30 am so we had invited as many of us as could come, to show up outside (and across the large courtyard from) the Pomona courthouse at 7:30 am, wearing white shirts to signify our belief in his innocence, for the purpose of singing some worship songs, praying for Jamie, and to take a group photo on an phone so it could be shown to Jamie by his attorney, to encourage Jamie that he's not standing alone in this fight. His sister had gotten buttons made with our motto, "I Stand With James". We all put one on. I had been praying beforehand that God would cover the gathering with His calm and He did. And when they opened the doors to allow his supporters into the courtroom, Jamie was sitting up ahead of us, with his back to us. When he heard us begin filing in, he turned his head around to see who all was there. It was such a blessing to me to see the sheer expression of blessing on his face as he kept watching, and watching, and watching, and watching, as this group of his supporters filed in and filled up the entire section. After the hearing, the attorney was able to show Jamie the Phone photo of the larger group that had assembled earlier outside. He said Jamie cried when he saw it. Given all the horrible realities that have come down on Jamie, and knowing that sentencing was hanging out there to land another heavy blow on him (and us), I couldn't see any way that Jamie could experience any happiness or positive feelings on this, his day of sentencing--on this, his 29th birthday. But, I am so grateful to share with you I do believe God did it! He planted the idea two weeks ago, we moved on it, and He brought us all together to physically and spiritually stand with Jamie. And in doing so, God gave all of us the priceless gift of being a part of His blessing to Jamie; a very special, very huge blessing on this, his 29th birthday. Thanks to each of you for your prayers. Please keep praying. This will be a long battle. Thank you God for all you did today to encourage Jamie, and to encourage all of us as well. OK, there you have my "brief" version of today's events. Love, Anonymous

 Thank you to the lovely person that wrote this note of support for James. As you can see, he was not alone that day. We all gathered around him in prayer and solidarity to show him our love and devotion. Wearing white, the buttons and our 'I STAND WITH JAMES HIGBEE' positive signs made an impact even without words. I would like to say THANK YOU to everyone that showed up that day and continues to show up! Thank you to those that pray for him, that send him letters and packages/books. As his sister, I know the person he is and his innocence is clear, however even when I begin to tell strangers about the circumstances, they don't question me. It makes my heart swell with gratitude to know that James is so deeply believed in. Thank you to Chloe for bringing your angelic presence and voice to lead us in prayer and song for James.

 When we gathered into the court room Katy was able to give her 'victim impact speech,' which was rather brutal to hear as none of it was truth. We kept calm and maintained composure through the outright lies but it was certainly not easy. I can only imagine how James must have felt.  He has lost significant weight on his already lean frame due to stress and the lack of healthy food at county so please pray for him.

 The judge sentenced James to life with the possibility of parole in 7 years, but also recommended that our attorneys file the appeal immediately and the bailiff was appalled by the outcome of the entire trial, which speaks volumes, in my opinion. We believe that these lies were perpetuated by fear to take the focus off of Devin's fall in Solvang and being bumped around on rides at Disneyland while in the care of the Adams family. When CPS and the detectives got involved Devin's mothers tune instantly changed to ''James is a loving father that would never ever hurt his child,'' to him ''being a monster and deliberately hurting Devin.'' Quite possibly because she was a suspect herself. It is likely that the entire family knows of James' innocence but had to make up some story so that they didn't risk all of this turning on them. They continue to perpetuate hate and negativity through blogs, social media and other sources. And I truly feel sorry for those that blindly believe them as they likely have not heard the whole truth or even half of it. With that said we are still fighting and will continue until this is rectified. James' innocence goes without saying and we are right there with him every step of the way.

 As my Uncle Senior Pastor Scott Brewer recently said, "I cannot wait for the day that James walks through my congregation doors a free man! And he will!''

Friday, February 27, 2015


Hi All, I'm Rebecca (James Higbees sister) and I keep the blog updated. Please feel free to find me on Facebook (Rebecca Joens) if you'd like to support Jamie and the matters regarding his innocence. I have events going on my Facebook page. We welcome all to contribute with your time and prayer. We are sad to say that the verdict came down in favor of the prosecution the week prior to Thanksgiving, on November 17th, 2014 to be exact. Needless to say, this was a huge shock to us, as many friends and family attended trial daily and felt that James' innocence went without saying. Unfortunately, as a result, we have lost most of our faith in the judicial system. Many cried, including Jamie's male attorneys, who strongly believe in his innocence and are now working on his behalf, filing for motions to overturn the verdict, notice of motion to file an appeal and the like.

 We are unable to reconcile this in many ways, but the following is a brief synopsis of how we think this came to be, particularly for those who are new to James' situation: We know that from the get-go this was a "witch hunt," so to speak. The detective did a biased investigation, or lack thereof, as we think that she may have personally known the prosecution's side. We know that the prosecution's side , the DA and Devin's mother, her family, etc., lied on the stand, even perjuring themselves. Theatrics were demonstrated to achieve their goal, which was to deflect from the injury that occurred on their watch in Solvang and Disneyland. This came down to politics and a win for the DA, versus the truth. We honestly believed that in order to convict someone you had to have evidence, but that is absolutely not the case as we are a glaring example of. All you need is an injured child and people that are willing to lie for self-preservation. We believe that after four weeks of trial, an exhausted jury only deliberated for one hour and based their decision on raw emotion rather than on evidentiary and medical fact.

  Innocent people do go to prison. It happens all the time, and it happened to our family. It is a travesty, but we keep moving forward everyday. ALL involved who know James, including his legal team and expert witnesses know that his innocence goes without saying. And, in fact, there are mountains of glaring evidence to the contrary. Via esteemed experts from Cedars-Sinai ''It is impossible that this injury was sustained on James watch, in twenty-five minutes, due to the timing and nature of the injury.'' More than likely it was sustained during the four days that he was with the Adams family, i.e., he stood up, fell from his stroller to the ground and landed on concrete in Solvang. This was further complicated with bumping his fragile head on multiple rides at Disneyland. However, here we are four years later and over $200,000 in legal fees, our inability to have our beloved Devin as part of our family. And now our James sits in prison as an innocent man who has lost his freedom and his child, but not his strength of character and/or fortitude.

 Although we are all traumatized, we have joined hands as a united force. We have not given up! We will leave no stone unturned. We have hundreds that believe in James and give energy and prayer for him daily. This includes, friends, family, our respective communities, and our entire church family of Archibald Ranch Community Church.  We even have the forces of Harvest praying for us! We feel blessed to have this outpouring of strength and support on behalf of James.

 The connections that we have are certainly not a coincidence. We are in touch with Amy Friedman, prominent author along with being the founder of POPS, which stands for Pain of the Prison System. She has put us in touch with the State Inspector General, along with a sincerely kind and helpful man, Franky Carrillo, who was exonerated by the Innocence Project after twenty years in prison. And, we are in talks with the Innocence Project and Innocence Matters. We are working towards establishing a non-profit organization. As well, Deborah is in touch with ACLU. We are advocating for inmate conditions to be improved with the help of the ACLU, who won a settlement against the LA County Sheriffs' Department in November of 2014.

As always, Jamie continues to walk through this with grace and dignity. He is a huge support for other inmates in creating art for them, their children and their families. He's going to school to further his education while an inmate and intends to work to occupy his time. He's also begun channeling his talent of writing and telling his story through that medium. We can never know why bad things happen to good people but as cliche as it sounds, we all truly believe that James is there right now for a reason. God is using him to touch the lives of others with his compassion, wisdom and perseverance. Anyone that knows Jamie knows that he can bring light to the darkest of places.

 On March 4th, prior to his sentencing hearing, we will be at Pomona courthouse at 7:30 a.m. in prayer and solidarity for James. This also happens to be his 29th birthday. We are hoping for a large turn out and all support would be appreciated. Let's show all that there is no monopoly on the judicial system and/or God and that we believe in James' innocence. We, as a family, humbly thank each of you for your ongoing love and support. Romans 12:19 - Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but [rather] give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance [is] mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

The fear of the unknown

It would appear that the numerous continuances of the trial prompted by the DA have come to an end. As of today it looks as though trial will commence on Tuesday October 14th. We have nothing to do now but to leave this in the hands of our attorneys and the God of our understanding, in hopes of a just outcome for James & Devin. James continues to walk through this with dignity and grace but this egregiously false accusation has taken it's toll on all involved. Any support you can give, be it prayer, good thoughts, and even attendance of trial would be graciously appreciated by James and the family.