Fullerton, CA–A few months ago domestic violence defense expert John McLaughlin of Borders, McLaughlin & Associates sent me a story about teacher Gregory Abbott, whose wife apparently conspired with her boyfriend to frame him as part of a custody dispute. She and her boyfriend planted a shotgun and some marijuana in his car while he was at school teaching, and made numerous fake police reports. Abbott was arrested but, thankfully, the police figured out the ploy and, to their credit, publicly proclaimed the Abbott’s innocence. My original blog post is here.
McLaughlin recently sent me an update to the case. So far Greg Abbott is being treated quite fairly. He was given full custody of his kids, the police have arrested his ex-wife and her boyfriend, and the DA has filed charges. The ex-wife is pictured above, talking to her lawyer from jail.
So far the only evidence of the preferential treatment women receive in the criminal justice system is the vastly different bail amounts given to the ex-wife and her co-conspirator boyfriend–$50,000 for her, $750,000 for him. Perhaps the judge was right to do this (he says the boyfriend is a greater flight risk) but I wonder–when was the last time a man and a woman were held in bail on the same charges and her bail was 15 times greater than his?
One more nice thing–the ex-wife apparently was willing to “use her children to locate [Greg Abbott] over the phone.” The new article on the case is excerpted below
Text records may reveal plot to frame teacher with drugs
Bail set for estranged wife and her boyfriend, who are in Orange County Jail.
By DENISSE SALAZAR and BARBARA GIASONE
The Orange County Register
FULLERTON – A woman and her boyfriend appeared in court today after being accused of conspiring to have the woman”s estranged husband – a Sunny Hills High School teacher – arrested for crimes he had not committed, authorities said.
Devon Eileen Abbott, 33, of Mira Loma, and Soloman Brian Silver, 42, of Portland, Maine, appeared at the North Justice Center in Fullerton for an arraignment hearing this morning, which was continued to July 10.
Abbott”s bail was set at $50,000 and Silver”s bail was set at $750,000 by Superior Court Judge Roger B. Robbins. They are being held at the Orange County Jail.
Abbott”s bail was decreased by Judge Robbins and Silver”s bail remained the same because he poses a greater flight risk, said Farrah Emami of the District Attorney”s Office.
Abbott and Silver were arrested late Friday by Fullerton police detectives, with the assistance of the Anaheim Police Department. They each face one felony count of conspiracy to falsely charge a crime, one felony count of false imprisonment by fraud, one felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime, one felony count of second-degree vehicular burglary, and one felony count of transportation of marijuana.
If convicted, Abbott and Silver each face a maximum sentence of six years and eight months in state prison.
“This is a very unique case because of the nature of the conspiracy and to have a man falsely arrested and charged with a crime makes it very unusual,” said Deputy District Attorney Keith Bogardus.
Police say the “elaborate setup” by Abbott and Silver resulted in the arrest of Greg Abbott on May 27 at Sunny Hills High after an anonymous caller told police Abbott was a drug dealer with a gun in the trunk of his car.
Two days later, Fullerton police held a news conference to announce that Abbott had been cleared of any wrongdoing. Police named Abbott’s estranged wife, Devon Abbott, 33, and a male acquaintance of hers as persons of interest in the case.
Abbott and Silver are accused of conspiring to hide a shotgun, marijuana and prescription pills in the victim”s vehicle and filing false police reports with the intention of having Abbott”s estranged husband, Gregory Abbott, arrested for crimes he did not commit between May 15 and May 27, authorities say.
The investigation revealed that Abbott and Silver exchanged several text messages in which Abbott provided Silver with the location of the victim”s car, the victim”s parents” home, and the victim”s whereabouts, authorities say.
Abbott is also accused of instructing Silver to keep an eye on the victim, offering to use her children to locate him over the phone, and discussing how best to get rid of evidence.
A day before Abbott was arrested at the high school, Silver is accused of using an alias, calling the California Highway Patrol and falsely reporting that a man had pulled a shotgun on someone and fled in his vehicle, authorities say. Silver then allegedly gave a detailed description of Gregory Abbott”s car.
Hours later, Silver is accused of anonymously calling and filing a false report with the Brea Police Department and saying that a “guy” (Gregory Abbott), was pointing a gun at vehicles while driving.
A few hours after that, Silver is accused of calling and filing a false report with the Placentia Police Department, saying that a man had pointed a shotgun at Silver”s face, and providing a detailed description of the victim”s vehicle and location.
The next day, Abbott was arrested after Silver allegedly called anonymously and filed a false report, this time with the Fullerton Police Department. Silver told police that Abbott had just sold him drugs and was at Sunny Hills High School, where he worked as a teacher.
Read the full article here.