UNITED STATES         ) 
     versus           )         CRIMINAL NUMBER 87-62
                      )         Judge Charles Richey 



1. On or about May 1, 1987 the Government, over the signature of Joseph E. diGenova, the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, requested the Court to reconsider its April 23, 1987 dismissal of the above-entitled case, and to hold a hearing on that request. Defendant William Thomas believes that the Government's latest Motion adds nothing to the legal arguments, distorts certain facts, and should be denied.


2. Government counsel complains that the Motion To Dismiss By Reason Of An Act Of God was not received by AUSA Chapman "until just shortly before the hearing" (Motion to Reconsider at 2). In fact defendant Thomas delivered a copy of the specific motion to Ms. Chapman's box in the Clerk's Office on April 21, 1987. What's more, Thomas telephoned Ms. Chapman on the morning of April 22, 1987, informing her that the Motion was in her box at the Clerk's Office. Perhaps Ms. Chapman actually did not receive her copy "until just shortly before the hearing," but, it would appear, that was her own fault.


3. The Government relies on the mistaken representation that:


"(d)efendants presented no ... evidence ... as to the structure and beliefs of the 'religion'..." (Motion to Reconsider at 3). As the Court will recall, the Government was offered every opportunity to cross-examine the defendants, and the Government declined (SEE April 23, 1987, Hearing transcript, pg. 49). Clearly there is AMPLE evidence in the record to support Thomas ' claim of sincere religious belief , e. g.:

"Thomas says there's only one reason he bothers to talk to other people ; to provoke them into thinking about the existence of God, 'because if they believe there is no justice beyond what we can see in one lifetime, then the "rule of the earth will continue to be Might is Right and it isn't."' Boston Globe, August 27, 1981, Defendant's Exhibit 6, filed April. 15, 1987, attachment to Motion To Dismiss For Intentional Ex Post Facto Enforcement. SEE ALSO Defendant's Exhibit 10, Statement of William Thomas, dated December 25, 1981, filed April 15, 1987, attachment to Motion To Dismiss For Malicious Prosecution, SEE ALSO Defendant's Exhibit 3, Declaration of William Thomas, filed March 25, 1987, Motion Of Defendant Thomas To Proffer Evidence In Support Of A Defense Of Necessity, Paragraphs 320, filed April 15, 1987 , and Second Declaration of William Thomas, Filed April 21, 1987.


4. In addition to Wisconsin v. Yoder, 406 U.S. 205 (1972); this Court judiciously recognized the similarity between the instant case and the cases of Thomas v. Review Board, 450 U. S. 707 (1981), and Murdock v. Pennsylvania, 319 U.S. 105 (1943), cases which addressed (1) the right of the individual to abstain from contributing to a work ethic which violated a "sincere religious belief," and (2) the protected nature of religious adherents' ability to evangelize in what some considered to be an obtrusive manner. The court also noted American Constitutional Law, L. Tribe, Sections 14-16, and defendant feels the Court has accurately appreciated the legal underpinnings of the Motion to dismiss By Reason Of An Act Of God. (COMPARE Government's


Motion to Reconsider page 4, paragraphs 4 and 5.)

5. As will be seen the Government's Motion to Reconsider adds nothing to the facts or legal framework of this record, but does shed some light on the lack of substance, and profound misunderstanding, which support the Government's position in this matter.

(I). "Your Honor, I would just briefly object to any of these defendants being allowed to prefer (sic) their religious beliefs, again however sincere they may be, as a defense at this time, because I don't think it is appropriate." (AUSA Chapman, April 27, 1987, hearing transcript, pages 48 and 49.)

(II). "In the realm of religious faith, and in that of political belief, sharp differences arise. In both fields the tenets of one man may seem the rankest of error to his neighbor, ... But the people of this nation have ordained in the light of history, that, in spite of the probability of excesses and abuses, these liberties are, in the long view, essential to enlightened opinion and right conduct on the part of the citizens of a democracy." Cantwell v. Conn., 310 U.S. 3}0 (1939).
(III). "Your Honor , the Government has no interest per se in prohibiting any of these particular defendants from sleeping in the park.
"The Government's interest is in enforcing the regulations .." (AUSA Chapman, April 27, 1987, hearing transcript, pages 49.)

6. Just briefly we will address the two ancient cases introduced in the Government's latest filing as they apply here.

"'(T)o suffer the civil magistrate to intrude his powers into the field of opinion, and to restrain the profession or propagation of principles on suppostion of their ill tendency, is a dangerous fallacy which at once destroys all religious liberty,' it is declared ' that it is time enough for the rightful purposes of civil government for its officers to interfere when principles break out into overt acts against peace and good order.' In these two sentences is found the true distinction between what properly belongs to the Church and what to the State." Reynolds v. United States, 98 U.S. 164 (1879), citing 1 Jeff. Works 45.

7. Unlike the present case, Reynolds v. United States and Davis v. Beason both addressed an issue "per se" in which the


Government was capable of articulating a colorable interest:

"Bigamy and polygamy are crimes by the laws of all civilized and Christian countries. They are crimes by the laws of the United States, and they are crimes by the laws of Idaho. They tend to destroy the purity of the marriage relation, to disturb the peace of families, to degrade woman and to debase man. Few crimes are more pernicious to the best interests of society and receive more general or more deserved punishment." Davis v. Beason, 133 U.S. 341 (1890).

8. Assuming, arguendo, that "sleeping" were "camping," and, just to keep the Government's argument alive, further assuming that this defendant had actually been "sleeping," without identifying some tangible interest beyond naked regulatory enforcement, the Government cannot seriously pretend that "sleeping," or even "camping," might rise to the level of "being pernicious to the best interests of society."

9. A regulation lacking rational justification must be considered suspect. (SEE Loving v. Virginia, ____ U.S. ___, see also, Gomillion v. Lightfoot, U.S. (1969).)

10. Similarly the U.S. Attorney's belated sheer skepticism, totally unsupported by evidence, cannot be equated with the defendant's sincerity, proven by six years of consistency. Likewise stark regulatory enforcement and prosecutorial skepticism, unsupported by any hint of a "compelling interest," should not be permitted to take precedent over freedom of belief, or defendant's free exercise and expression of his long professed religious beliefs.

"With man's relations to his Maker and the obligations he may think they impose, and the manner in which an expression shall be made by him of his belief on those subjects no interference can be permitted, provided always the laws of society, designed to secure its peace and prosperity, and the morals of its people, are not interfered with." Davis v. Beason, page 342.


11. The Government has offered no new evidence, has introduced no novel legal theory, has provided no adequate grounds for reconsideration; so the Government's Motion to Reconsider may be dismissed as frivolous.


12. Nor has Thomas just "suddenly" asserted that he is acting in accordance to a sincere religious belief (COMPARE Motion to Reconsider pages 12). Defendant hereby requests, pursuant to Fed. R. of Evid. 201, that the Court take Judicial Notice of the record in Thomas v. United States, USDC Civil Action 84-3552. That action alleges that agents of the United States have violated 42 USC Sections 1983 and 1985(3), by, among other things, depriving Thomas' free exercise of religion under color of, among other things, the "camping" regulation, and false testimony which allegedly resulted in Thomas' convictions on three occasions (See Defendant's Exhibit 20, attached hereto, page 1, paragraph l(a) thru (k), Proposed Writ of Mandamus, Amended Complaint, filed October 19, 1985).

13. On June 3, 1985 Judge Louis Oberdorfer denied the Federal Defendants' Motion To Dismiss, holding that Thomas had "stated a substantial federal claim." After conducting a November 15, 1986 hearing on Motions for Summary Judgment; Magistrate Burnett issued a Memorandum Opinion, Report & Recommendation on January 13, 1987. In the Magistrate's Opinion: "there remains an incredible number of incidents stemming from these arrests on which reasonable minds might well differ as to the arresting officers' subjective intent and whether their actions involved police misconduct" (Magistrate's Recommendation, page 9).

The Magistrate "concludes that the motion (for summary judgment) of the federal defendants must be denied" (ibid, page 6).

14. The Government has recognized the relation between that civil action and this criminal matter (SEE Defendant's Exhibit 2, attached hereto, Federal Defendant's Notice Of Filing, May 1, 1987, Thomas v USA, USDC CA 84-3552).


WHEREFORE defendant prays the Court to deny the Government's Motion for Reconsideration, filed May 1, 1987, and to take Judicial Notice of Thomas v. USA, USDC CA 84-3552 so as to insure a reasonable consideration of this case "in light of all the circumstances."

Respectfully submitted,

/s/ w.thomas
William Thomas, Defendant Pro Se
1440 N Street NW, #410,
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 462-3542