How Caleb and I Saved Each Other
In case you don’t know, Caleb was my lover. I use that word intentionally, although one could easily question whether there was ever any love there. But that is a novel unto itself.
I had feelings. He may have had feelings a few times. We both had drugs. What we did not ever have was the intention to save each other’s lives.
Not from death, or pain, or misery or incarceration.
Yet that is actually what happened.
I was scheduled for a federal trial on July 24th 2007 on various drug related charges, including possession with intent to distribute crystal methamphetamine, possession of PCP, LSD, marijuana, ecstasy, etc. Failure to appear would also be tacked on to this eventually, but that’s getting ahead of myself. I was a drug addict. Perhaps I still am. Whatever. I hate that word and I used it on purpose.
I am sober and happy about it. So whatever.
I wasn’t ready to be sober then. Or give up Caleb.
So I planned to flee my federal trial. Various faeries helped me achieve this flight, none of whom are ever going to be named. Ever. IKR? As if. I was facing some monstrous time, but I can’t honestly say I was even aware of that. My lawyer, a rather hapless man himself, had sent me a letter to an address I no longer resided at telling me just how much time. Funnily enough I never got it.
Eight to twelve years to be precise. Yes I had THAT much crystal methamphetamine in my possession, roughly 192 grams as the agent measures. Thankfully I had sold half my cache hours before my arrest. Otherwise, well you wouldn’t be reading this prison memoir but another one years in the future. Eight to twelve years. Wrap your head around that. Here are some things you can do in eight to twelve years:
Attend Medical School
Eat 13,146 meals
Fail out of Law School
Read 612 novels
Take 4300 showers
Go from being a State Senator to President of the United States
Raise a teenager
Got the idea? It’s a lot of time. And it could have been much worse. I wasn’t even really aware I was facing that much time when I fled. I fled from SEVEN years, thinking that was the maximum. But eight to twelve wasn’t even the real number. That was just what could be negotiated if I were to give co-operation. Yes, that means what you think.
Tell on people.
And that is also what this story is about.
Caleb and I both told on each other. In the doing neither of us was thinking of the other, and perhaps this is why we ended up saving one another. It certainly wasn’t because we loved each other.
I have to take a sidebar here, because you’ve likely never been handcuffed before a Federal judge (especially not a horse’s ass like Frank Polozola) so you have no idea how the Federal court system works, or doesn’t depending on how bitter you are.
Everything is based on points. I never thought my life could be so conveniently classified into a simple point value which would determine its worth. But it did. And my point value was 36.
See the Federal Government doesn’t really care how much methamphetamine you had. It all comes down to marijuana, their entire punishment system is based on marijuana. Bet you didn’t know THAT, eh? Not crack, or heroin, or units of oxycontin, or something that can actually harm you. But tired old pot. That is the demon of classification for good old Uncle Sam.
And according to Uncle Sam I possessed the equivalent of an entire shipping container of the stuff. You read that right.
The Feds said I had the methamphetamine equivalent of 3587 kilograms of weed. How much weed is that?
How much does the 192 grams of methamphetamine they found at my house actually equal, well about as much as
So you can see how obvious the connection is. Millions of dollars worth of marijuana? Throw that guy in prison for the time it takes an unknown guy from Illinois to become the most famous man in the world, or for a kid to decide to follow in his footsteps and become a lawyer. Sure. Maybe. But for $4000 worth of crystal methamphetamine? Yes. Why not? Give him the same thing. Go ahead. It’s just numbers after all.
And mine was 36.
But it could have been worse.
My base offense level was 36. That is the number mandated by law for the equivalent amount of marijuana I possessed in the form of crystal methamphetamine. It doesn’t end there, of course. That does not take into account the bonuses, Federally mandated goodies like the Safety Valve (because even criminals are good people! Give ’em two points on the board!)
That’s -2 for being a first time loser.
We’re at 34 now. Yay!
Next was the Acceptance of Responsibility. Tell everybody just how bad a criminal you are and for the love of all things judicially holy do not say in open court any of the things you actually believe or know to be true, only be GUILTY and PENITENT because no one here wants to face the reality of their situations today, just you.
That’s another -3, thanks Judge Frankie Baby.
Knock me down to a swingin’ 31 folks! NOW we’re playing with fire!
But it doesn’t end there. Like Andrea True and her connection I want MORE MORE MORE.
So I told. Know what a 5k1 is? I’m about to tell you.
Armed with that knowledge let’s award me another -3 for telling on Caleb. Because who knows if the government ever used the other information I gave them. I certainly don’t. The inestimable Robert Pierdrahita was willing to walk away from the table if I didn’t give him Caleb. The Assistant US Attorney prosecuting me, Mr. Pierdrahita didn’t care about my furtive dealer from Arizona, the guy whose bank account and full name I turned over. Or the schmoes and fellow lawyers whose names I so faithfully turned over as being dealers and clients of mine. Yes, I did do that. If you question why, ask my mother. Peer pressure is a bitch, but MOM pressure is even worse, especially when you want a candy bar, hair conditioner, underwear, batteries, deoderant or books and the only way you can get them is for you mother to put money on your inmate account. So go and tell Mom you choose your drug buddies over her. Try it some time. Let me know how it works out for you, Goodfella. Mine didn’t take it so well.
Uncle Sam knows this. He ain’t stupid folks. The guy ain’t stupid.
I did it at first.
I’m not giving anyone up! Yeah I said. I was a tough guy. I’m not going to sentence someone else to this for my benefit! What kind of horrid moral calculus is THAT? I would never! (*clutches pearls*. No, not THOSE pearls. I never got one. RAFO. That means “READ AND FIND OUT” for those of you not addicted to Robert Jordan.)
But I did give people up. Lots of them. But all the Esteemed Assistant US Attorney seemed to want was Caleb. I fought them for a year. Honestly. I sat in jail telling my family and friends and loved ones how there was no option, no way out. We just had to soldier on. We tried some legal skullduggery that involved the confidential informant (PAUL HANCE anyone? BUELLER? BUELLER? I’m not required by law to keep HIS name confidential.) and possible Brady violation. But the truth is and was:
I was guilty as can be.
I did it. I was a drug dealer.
I broke bad.
I am a criminal.
So after a year of sitting in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison being mildly entertained by the transsexual crack-whores who were my constant rotating roommates, eating a LOT of junk food (I gained SEVENTY POUNDS!) and reading a great deal of books I was told Caleb was using again.
Are you confused yet?
Caleb didn’t go to jail when I did in July of 2007 after I fled my Federal trial. He went to jail a month later around labor day for totally unrelated charges. He would eventually serve seven months with in jail and be let out on state probation for those crimes and the others we both were accused of in state court. Perhaps you didn’t know but yes you CAN be tried and convicted of the SAME EXACT crime in a state court and a Federal court. You CAN and MANY DO serve double sentences because of this. Thankfully, I did not, since my hapless lawyer managed to do at least one thing very right in getting my state charges dismissed after I plead guilty to the Federal ones. It certainly did not have to happen that way.
When Caleb was released in March of 2008 he had nowhere to go. So I twisted the screws on some of the best people I’ve ever known, the Pattons, and they took him in. But as I was before he was not ready to be sober. He almost immediately went back to using. How he managed to get put on state probation for a drug charge and not have mandatory drug testing is wizardry in of itself, but whatever the story is behind it I don’t know it. Caleb lasted at the Pattons until roughly May of 2008 when he “borrowed” one of their cars for several days and did not return it, since he was high and busy doing whatever it is high people do. He’s never told me where he went during those three days, or why it was so important, but that’s more his story than mine and I’ll let him tell it, if he ever wants to do so.
Even through all this I had refused to testify against Caleb. And done everything I could to make sure that he was taken care of. Because I loved him. He was a tenuous connection with a life I still wasn’t ready to give up. Also he was pretty cute and thin. Always pluses when you’re a vain homosexual. He was an enabler as well, and what drug addict doesn’t need one of those? Anyway, after the “borrowing” of that car Caleb was no longer welcome at the Patton house. He was homeless and checked himself, at the urging of our friend Sean, into a detox center. Sean had also at my urging (Sean felt he owed me favors.) agreed to help get Caleb into a rehab program in Jackson, MS. Sean did this, though he was not happy about it, as he was currently working for the patriarch of the Pattons and one of my closest friends, Mike.
Between Sean and Mike I managed to get Caleb ferried to Jackson, MS to that rehab program, where I was in phone contact with him from jail. Need anymore proof of MY love? I had it bad, in every sense of that word, for him. Caleb and I talked several times a week, but the calls were expensive on my end ($20 for ten minutes) and I was wholly dependent on my mother and the Pattons for money. Would they have approved of my spending it on phone cards to call Caleb and feed my love addiction? Certainly not. But I did it anyway.
I’m sorry guys.
Caleb lasted in rehab until just before Hurricane Gustav hit. One day Caleb simply didn’t come to the phone when I called the rehab. He had (as I learned later) snapped in a group meeting and fled the place, telling everyone he had drugs waiting on him in New Orleans and essentially that they could all go fuck themselves. So that is exactly what he did. He fled to New Orleans, directly in the path of an oncoming Hurricane. He was never the smartest cookie. I spent that hurricane in ankle deep water stuck in prison, with no electricity, bad food, no hot water and absolutely no knowledge of what Caleb was up to.
I was supposed to be sentenced in a coupled of weeks. And I had no idea what Caleb was up to. But I found out. I can be dogged when necessary. I made calls. I twisted arms over the phone. I called in favors. And finally I found out the truth.
Caleb was in New Orleans. Getting high. Shooting up. Wasted.
And he was I was about to sentenced to who knew how many years for a crime we both committed. A crime I took upon myself and refused to attribute to him. The one time the Esteemed Assistant US Attorney Robert Pierdrahita had offered me help in return for my knowledge I had told him in no uncertain terms that I loved Caleb and would not give him up. Honestly I was confused why they even wanted Caleb.
Caleb was small fish. I offered them the connection who sent me the drugs, who surely must have been the strand that could lead to HUGE, CAREER making busts. But did the Esteemed Assistant US Attorney Robert Pierdrahita care? Not that I could see. He wanted Caleb. When I refused to give Caleb up, he politely thanked me and ended the meeting. That was that.
Almost a year later, Hurricane Gustav hit. And I was about to be sentenced. Caleb was getting high again and I wasn’t. But I’ve left something integral out.
While Caleb was in the rehab his counselors urged him, in fact I suspect ordered him, to sever ties with me. WITH ME! The very person responsible for his being there! The one person in the world who still cared about his sorry sack ass enough to give up EVERYTHING for him and see him helped into rehab. The person who was ready to throw everything he loved and wanted overboard. No big deal. Give that guy up, Caleb. He’s bad news.
So Caleb, of course, did it.
He broke up with me over the phone in July of 2008. I cried. A lot. I listened to cheesy pop songs, I mean seriously, Jordin Sparks’ “One Step At A Time” and Chris Brown’s “Forever” were enough to send me to my bunk bawling like a little girl. Except I was surrounded by very big girls and none of them cried. Most of them laughed at me when I did.
Caleb broke up with me, while I was in prison. While he was in a rehab I arranged. While I was doing time for OUR crime, after I had given him so much. HOW could it be?
I thrashed that question around my head so much. There never was a good answer for it. He was a selfish, drug addicted piece of shit, but even that wasn’t satisfying. I wanted a bigger reason, a grander truth and there just isn’t one except that he didn’t love me the way I loved him.
Unrequited faggot love. Ain’t it grand?
Back to the story.
The hurricane passes and Caleb is shooting up and I’m about to be sentenced. I broke. Caleb was determined to be without me? I’d SHOW him. BREAK UP WITH ME? I got your break up asshole.
I called my lawyer and arranged a meeting with the Esteemed Assistant US Attorney Robert Pierdrahita. Out of pure spite. I told you it wasn’t for any noble reason. I wasn’t actually trying to save his life. But I did.
I met with the Esteemed Assistant US Attorney Robert Pierdrahita. I spilled the rest of my beans, including all of Caleb’s part in it. The government was overjoyed with me. They agreed to postpone sentencing. Things seemed to be looking up, though I still missed Caleb and my dreams of our life together.
I even called him, after much tracking down and spending of $20 phone cards to warn him of what I had done. I guess I thought it was the gentlemanly thing to do between supposed former infatuation junkies. He disregarded my warnings. Caleb kept on shooting up, floating from place to place, being a vagabond and a waste of general oxygen to carbon conversion, of use to nothing and no one. Then he decided, inexplicably, to leave New Orleans and travel with some random guy named Joey to Kansas to live with Caleb’s father. This might have all ended differently had he and Joey not decided to run a toll booth because they were broke or just plain stupid. Anyway, they got arrested.
And lo! The Federal gods answered prayers. Caleb now had a Federal warrant out for his arrest AND a state of Louisiana warrant for ditching his probation there. He was FUCKED.
They extradited him back to Louisiana, where he appeared one day at the cell door of the dorm I lived in, looking penitent and shy. Not at all angry at me. Possibly harboring sudden feelings for me that he had never been able to summon when I actually felt them for him. I have to say I gave in to the moment. We danced around the issue. I fed him candy bars and bought him deoderant and sundries. He squeezed the blackheads on my nose and we watched a lot of Ugly Betty together. It was idyllic. For prison.
Then one morning several weeks after his arrival he was taken away to a different jail. Some weeks later I was finally sentenced in Federal court. And thanks to my testimony at a grand jury hearing against Caleb, the Safety Valve and Acceptance of Responsibility I was only at an offense level of 28 instead of 36. An offense level of 28 equates to approximately a range of 78-97 months in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons. To which the Honorable Piece of Shit Frank Polozola decided I was to be given 96 months. What people in the system refer to as “the high end” or “getting maxxed out.”
But in His Horribleness’s defense, he DID give me Acceptance of Responsibility, which as he said in court he had never done before for a defendant who had fled a federal trial. Win some, lose some, I guess.
So there it was. 96 months in Federal prison. And I went off to serve my sentence. How did I save Caleb’s life you might be asking? Or more, how on earth did that sad sack save mine?
It’s like this:
Caleb was shooting up crystal methamphetamine. That means injecting it directly into his veins. He was homeless. Penniless. No one cared about him anymore. He would have died on the streets, or in some abandoned building or other secret place he was crashing in, eventually. But he fled Louisiana to go to Kansas in a last ditch effort to find somewhere to live, with his father, whom he had not really been close to in some time. He was still heavily addicted to drugs and the use would have continued there, until he ended up in the same dire straits he had been in New Orleans. That didn’t happen, because I told on him and the Feds arrested him because of my testimony to a grand jury. What happened next to him is of no consequence to this story, but I will tell you that it was a happy ending.
That’s how I saved him. Here’s the loopback to the beginning and the big reveal of how he saved me. See I told you I fled my Federal trial. I took Caleb with me. Because he was my enabler, my lover, my last connection to the real world. He was also the person who told the Illinois State Police who the person pretending to sleep in the back of my sister’s SUV truly was.
Yes, Officer that IS David Frank McIntyre.
Why did he do it? It certainly wasn’t intending to save my life. He wanted to get away, and that is precisely what the Illinois State Trooper offered him. The classic Faustian bargain of law enforcement:
Tell on THAT guy and we’ll let YOU go.
So he did.
And they took me right to prison. Do not go pass GO. Do not collect the $18,000 left in the SUV. Do not see your beloved cat again after that night for seven years. Thanks Caleb.
Seriously, if you’re reading this, I’m thanking you Caleb. You saved my life.
We had about $1500 worth of crystal methamphetamine in the SUV with us. And the above referenced $18 grand. Had Caleb NOT turned me over to the dutiful Illinois State Police (who pulled us over because of his poor driving) then they WOULD have searched the SUV. Found the drugs. Found me. Found the money and Tori knows what else Caleb had that I never knew about. But they didn’t search the car – because much like the Esteemed US Attorney Robert Pierdrahita many months later they only wanted one thing. This time that thing was me: Federal fugitive David Frank McIntyre.
Had they found the drugs and the money, in possession of a known fugitive already charged with a Federal drug trafficking crime in another state, they would have done the expected thing and added MORE charges. The list is short but powerful.
More possession with intent charges.
Aiding and abetting.
Committing a crime while on Federal pre-trial.
None of these are life ending in of themselves, but when added to what I already faced, they ensured I’d not be allowed to bond out (thus preventing any future attempts at flight) and they would have added a tremendous amount of possible time to the already hefty eight to twelve I was facing. How much time? I don’t have exact figures, but upwards of twenty-five years to life.
Yes. You read that right. And what would I have done?
Have you ever considered life in prison? Watched an episode of Oz? Or Lockup? I have. And I’ve lived some of it. Life in prison? No thanks. I’d have hung myself at the first opportunity and saved my mother a great deal of future commissary deposits. Sorry to everyone who loves me and got choked up reading that, but it’s the truth. I would never have endured twenty-five years in prison, much less life.
Honestly I wouldn’t have gotten even the twenty-five much less life. But I didn’t know that then and wouldn’t for a very long time. I almost DID kill myself when I was sentenced to eight years. Had I even had the PROSPECT of twenty-five hanging over my head, I can assure you I would have bent all my considerable intellect and willpower to the task and for the first and only time in my life considered suicide.
And I would have succeeded.
It obviously didn’t happen that way, though. Because when that Illinois State Trooper asked Caleb who I was and told Caleb he could leave if he told them, Caleb did it.
It saved my life, and I’ve never thanked him for that before now. So thanks, Caleb.
I owe you one.