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tv   Meet the Press  MSNBC  March 26, 2017 11:00pm-12:01am PDT

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when they tried to beat the odds on the outside, they wound up on the inside. >> in the process of starting the fire, my best friend ended up catching himself on fire and he died in the process. >> so they've taken on the roles of jailhouse preacher. >> no matter where we are, we need to be serving god. >> poet. >> if i were a free man, i'd whisk you away. we'd be on the lam but in love come what may. >> and purveyor of pleasure.
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but now they're about to face the biggest gamble of their lives. >> if something is unjust and unfair, you have to fight. ♪ >> the maricopa county jail is divided between two distinct worlds. the first is an outdoor world. the jail is internationally
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famous for tent city, a cluster of outdoor housing yards for both men and women. >> ladies, fall in. i'm not talking to the fence, am i? >> life here sucks. i mean it's terrible. i don't even think this place should exist to be honest with you. >> but the vast majority of maricopa inmates live in one of five different indoor facilities where they will rarely, if ever, experience any time outdoors. >> i'm cousin ashton, i come out blastin', i'm about as hungry as a taliban fasting so just like the clumps i'll fill my plate, ghetto grinding all day it's a crime of fate. >> in one of maricopa's primary men's facilities, the fourth avenue jail, when inmates are not in their small two-person cells, they can work out in an indoor rec room or in the common area between their cells. but every afternoon many of the inmates shift focus from their
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bodies to their bank accounts. >> this is how i make my money. i get 50 or 60 bucks every week. i got money coming off the streets, you know what i'm saying? so this is what i got to do. >> tell me how you make those chips. >> just put them inside caps, press them down. >> what are they? >> tissue. >> toilet paper. >> put them in the caps like that, push it down, get a pencil and shave it with an emery boa and sprinkle and sprinkle like you're dusting them now. >> how much is each worth? >> each is worth a dollar. the blue ones worth 50 cents. >> since inmates are not allowed access to cash, they have another way to pay gambling debts. the losers must purchase snacks or other items from the jail canteen for the winners. they pay for canteen through debit accounts that friends or relatives on the outside deposit money into. but a losing hand can bring serious consequences. >> if i'm gambling and i don't have any way to pay it back, the
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consequences could mean your safety, could mean a few teeth, could mean your life. >> what got me here is a very bad gambling compulsion. it started in 2005. it got progressively worse and worse and worse. >> joe watson's gambling cost him everything. >> i wanted to be the person that could take care of everything, and when i couldn't take care of things at a job that i loved and that i was good at, when i couldn't even meet deadlines for that, i figured i would supplement it by going to the casino and it didn't work out. >> watson then turned to crime. he eventually became known as the salon bandit after holding up two tanning salons and several other businesses to pay for his gambling debts.
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>> i've been accused of going into different businesses, whether they're a gas station, a retail store, a sandwich shop, a tanning salon, a video store and putting my hand either in my pocket or under my shirt pretending that i had a weapon. in arizona, as the law states, when you simulate a weapon, it's the same thing as actually having one. so i haven't been charged with just robbery, i've been charged with armed robbery. >> even though gambling drove him to robbery, watson is now betting his future on another high stakes risk. he's decided to represent himself at trial. >> my attorney decided that the motion that i wanted him to file, he felt it was frivolous and obviously i disagree. it's pretty imperative to my case, to my defense. so since he was unwilling to file that motion, then i had no other option but to go pro per. >> huge gamble to represent yourself. in fact, the first question the judge asked me was. do you have
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any history of mental illness? okay, so he looks at me and said i just want you to know that i think this is a terrible idea. he said this is like a cancer patient trying to operate on themselves. >> besides not being a lawyer, mounting a defense from a jail cell brings numerous other challenges. >> i can't sit there at a computer and just search case law search statutes. i have to send in requests. then i have to wait for a week to get any kind of response. for me to get legal mail, i have to let everybody know who is on my witness list well before the trial begins. >> is there anything you have seen for me that wasn't marked legal mail? so do you remember sending it back? >> no, sometimes we get stuff that will say just legal on there. for benefit of the doubt we will still bring it up. >> as long as a letter says legal mail, you will bring it up? >> yes. >> all right. >> and like i say, we can only deliver --
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>> yeah, i understand. i understand. >> along with navigating through the bureaucracy of the county jail, watson helps other inmates with their cases. >> charles? >> hey, joe. >> hey, bud. >> how are you doing, bud? >> all right. want to talk about that motion that we want to get filed today? >> guys come to me a lot for legal advice. i try to help as much as i can. i always preface it by saying i'm not a lawyer. if it doesn't work out, i'm sorry but please don't blame me but everybody is really understanding. they want any help they can. >> this is my release conditions from the judge that i received when i got sentenced. >> it says you may be released early if it's an approved residential treatment facility. then there should nobody problem with you going there. we'll file a motion saying because of your release conditions, we'll argue you're being held illegally by the maricopa county sheriff's office. if they don't have a good reason for you being detained, then the judge is supposed to have you released immediately. >> of course, i like to see people have the motions that i
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file on their behalf granted but seeing them learn something about the legal process that they didn't know before actually is really pretty rewarding because in three years in here you don't get too many opportunities to do something that. >> all right. well, i appreciate your time, joe. thank you so much. >> you want those? >> yeah. >> all right, buddy. >> well, thank you, man. >> i'll let you know as soon as i'm done with it. >> helping other inmates doesn't carry the same risk that watson faces representing himself. if he fails, he could get a sentence as high as 25 years to life. >> you're not exactly shy from big gambles, right? gambling is kind of your thing? >> ooh, actually people would say that i'm a risky person anyway. i like to take risks. but i would say that this is a much more informed and educated risk than my past deeds. that was for poker chips. this is for my life.
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coming up, an accused arsonist could be looking at some serious time. >> in the process of starting the fire my best friend ended up catching himself on fire and he died. and -- >> i'll bring it to you. >> joe watson becomes a jailhouse ghost writer for inmates looking to impress their women. >> i'm going to tell you exactly what she looks like. >> miley cyrus. >> miley cyrus? >> miley cyrus. >> but a legal miley cyrus. >> but a legal one, yeah.
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inside maricopa's 4th avenue jail, jon antonucci. tends to stand out. >> last name is spelled a-n-t-o-n-u-c-c-i. italian last name, redhead, don't ask.
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>> never been in jail. it's completely different perspective than i got from the outside. my only connotations of jail were andy griffith style or there's a big guy in the shower named bubba. >> i don't know how they could take a poker game without the best player playing. >> assigned to the same housing unit is joe watson. antonucci is at maricopa awaiting sentencing for manslaughter having plea bargained from charges of arson and murder. he and three friends burned down their former employer's office building, and one of them didn't make it out in time. >> in the process of starting the fire, my best friend ended up catching himself on fire and died in the process, and i got charged with first degree murder as well as the arson, justly so. it was a horrible decision, horrible mistake. something that i wish i had
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never done but i did and i got to face the consequences now. >> he was preaching the kingdom of god and teaching those things which concern the lord jesus christ with all confidence and what i want to point out today is that is no matter where we are, we need to be serving god. >> while waiting for his sentencing hearing, antonucci has begun leading bible studies for other inmates. >> i'm a devout christian and i've gotten back to my walk with god. i was working in my church and everything before coming here. it's not like a jailhouse conversion or whatever. i followed a friend and did something i shouldn't have done and it's going to cost me several years of my life. when someone walks around the pod and they walk up to you and they're like, christian brother, man, i need a favor from you, you know, god bless you, and then they walk over to you and have a conversation about perverted sexual things using a swear word every three minutes and they come over to you and gamble for 20 minutes, those two personalities clash.
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they clash. i mean, one is carnal and fleshly and one is spiritual. >> antonucci's crime received substantial local press in phoenix. and much of it was negative. as a result, some inmates here don't believe his claims of remorse. >> you should recruit that hard every day for bible study, not just for the cameras. >> i do but i just got to get it right away. you know what i mean? >> that's real, real -- show some humility, brother. doing that for the cameras, man. >> just a year earlier, antonucci was a popular 19-year-old with a black belt in karate and known to the many children he taught as sensei jon working as a karate instructor for a company in phoenix called young champions. >> young champions is basically the -- they offer low-cost sports programs for kids. >> antonucci was fired when his employer suspected him and another instructor josh robinson of embezzling.
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prosecutors say they turned to arson to destroy the evidence. and that antonucci talked two other employees, also karate instructors, into helping them. antonucci says it was all robinson's idea. no one will ever know because robinson died in the fire. >> i was just a coward. i didn't really want to participate but i wasn't willing to say, no, i'm not going to do this. and if nothing else guilty by association but i'm also guilty by action, unfortunately. >> while antonucci is facing anywhere from 7 to 21 years for his crime, the prosecutor is asking for 15. the judge is expected to make his decision within a matter of days. >> at this point, i'm just looking for mercy. i'm saying, hey, this isn't me. i'll never do anything like this again. i won't so much as run a stop sign again. i just look for mercy from the court system. i'm still hoping for a miracle in some way, shape or form that can get me less than seven years.
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>> while antonucci waits for his miracle, one thing he can count on is a letter or more specifically a postcard from his girlfriend. county, we're not allowed to get any sort of letters. it has to be a post card. most of my family does the smallest type but my girlfriend does it the smallest. i think that's a three-point font. this is eight or nine pages. >> how do you even read that? >> with eyes. i can actually read this fine from right here. so it's -- >> read me a sentence out of there. >> hey, dear, so i've been all sad for the past few days because i didn't get any mail. today i did. i got one letter from thanksgiving that mom forwarded and one other postcard. one of the letters from 12/6 or 12/7 is still down at the post office because i didn't check my mail early enough. that was one line. that was one line. so -- >> not everyone at maricopa is as lucky in love as antonucci. joe watson's gambling-fueled robbery spree cost him his fiancee.
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>> the first date we ever went on i told her she was my dream girl. and she's still my dream girl. >> after surveillance footage of one of his robberies made the local news, watson's dream girl turned him in. >> she called the police. she told them that i just saw my fiance on television robbing a tanning salon. >> now as a former journalist, watson uses his writing skills to help other inmates keep their romantic ties. in return, he might score a couple of extra snack items from the canteen. >> this one. >> you want that one? >> yes. >> all right. >> i've got like -- i have an original and then i have some copies so i'll give you a copy of one, all right?
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>> all right. i'll bring it to you, all right? >> okay. >> oh, i bought a poem from joe for my girl for valentine's day because he writes some good poems. i'll send it through the mail. get an item or two. at least she knows i'm thinking about her while i'm playing poker. >> so happy customer, absolutely. and there may be another one, i don't know. >> harry martin who goes by the nickname boo is desperate to get a message to his girlfriend who happens to currently reside four miles away. she's an inmate at maricopa's female housing facility. >> do you want a letter? do you want a poem? >> however you want to do it. i just don't have the words for it. >> all right. >> how long have you guys known each other? >> three years. >> three years. >> tell me the color of her hair. don't just tell me brown. tell me what it's really like. >> it's like a sandy, sandy, sandy brownish blond, you know what i mean.
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>> does she look like -- >> you know what she looks like. i'll tell you exactly who she looks like. miley cyrus. >> miley cyrus. >> miley cyrus. >> but a legal miley cyrus. >> but a legal one, yeah. >> what's the most memorable thing you guys have ever done together? what's the best memory you have of each other? >> kind of when we first got together we had a little chihuahua, her name was ti-ti and she got out late one afternoon and i was sitting on the couch with the dog, had her right up here with me. and when she came walking out of the bedroom, i went there she is like we were waiting all day for her, you know what i mean and she was just like -- she loved it. like i was with my baby like our baby daughter and we're like there's mommy, you know what i mean? >> that's cute. that's really cute, man. leaving it up to me, right? >> totally. >> i think -- i would probably just have more fun with this probably writing a poem for you. we'll make a fun poem about chihuahuas but not miley cyrus. >> no, she's a legal one.
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>> i'll put together a poem for you and have it for you by the end of the morning. >> what can i get you at the store, a couple items? >> yeah. >> honey buns? >> honey buns are too sweet for me. i like muffins. i like muffins. i'm a spunkmeyer man. >> muffins, it is. >> thanks. coming up, one inmate finds a creative solution to life without men. >> that's a short 12 inches. >> it's girthy. it's good to go.
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here we go again. >> life at the maricopa county jail in phoenix was never meant to be easy. the rules are strict. and the accommodations bare bones. inmates aren't even allowed to have pillows. but even in this spartan environment, they still come up with creative ways to find comfort. christina ranich has discovered that with a few raw materials
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like soap, water and a plastic bag, she can sculpt something to temporarily take her mind off jail. >> that's big. >> just let it dry. >> oh, my god. >> you need to make me a little one, the short and fat one comes with a lot of money that works for me. >> the short and fat ones come with a lot of money. >> gross. >> the short and fat ones come with money. >> is that a fact? >> the big ones, huh-uh. they just have -- they just slinging and not slinging. >> the next one, don't cut it in half. >> yeah, don't cut it in half. >> for me. >> unless it's an anteater, then it's all good. >> that's a short 12 inches. >> no, it's girthy. it's good to go. >> no, you got to go to jamaica. >> no, it's not. >> even in jail, ranich manages to have a few laughs but she also has some genuine sorrow. now in her second stay at maricopa, this time facing
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charges of identity theft and trafficking stolen property, she lost custody of her 5-year-old daughter during her first time here. >> my aunt has her. it's really tough. my fiance has two daughters of his own that he's kinda just taken over being their mother so technically i have three but one i can't really see. i'll get her back eventually. >> back at the 4th avenue jail, joe watson is helping another inmate deal with the pain of separation from his loved one. >> what's up, man? you want it. >> i wrote that poem for your girl. >> let me see. >> let me read it to you and see if it's all right. i write this for you in the sweetest sense with love and longing this is true romance. if i were a free man, i'd whisk you away. we'd be on the lam and in love come what may. flowers, flowers you know which ones, the ones that grow tall from mesa to the queen creek,
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from a.j. to the east, i will cry your name and then repeat, i love you, i love you, i love you, i've got to make you see what you mean to me, michelle my belle. >> that's what's up. >> is that cool? >> wait. let me get you something. >> thanks, buddy. >> thank you. >> what do you think, boo? >> it's good. >> are you impressed? >> yeah, i'm really impressed. i should have gave him three pretzels. >> while boo's girlfriend will soon receive an expression of love from him, john antonucci has been on the receiving end of some very different sentiments. he's just returned from a presentencing hearing in court and the judge who will render the final sentence in a few days has just read several letters written by antonucci's victims. they include employees of his former company whose office building he helped burn down and the relatives of his best friend
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and co-worker. >> they describe me as a manipulative lying person who will do anything to get my way. they described a person that is a danger to society. it was said that the judge looked past my clean-cut exterior and charismatic behavior to see the true terror that i am. and that's a direct quote. as well as the fact that at least one person, maybe two, said they feared for their lives when i got out, saying i would come back with a vengeance. >> with 21 years of his life at stake antonucci needs to find a way to make other people see him as he sees himself. >> i've done a lot of harm. i feel i can do a lot of good if i'm given a chance. i just hope i'm given that chance. coming up, a ghost written poem makes one inmate feel loved. >> if i were a free man, i'd whisk you away. we'd be on the --
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>> while a scathing newspaper article haunts another just days before his sentencing. >> does that have an impact? >> it's obviously not favorable but it's just.
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due to mature subject matter, viewer discretion is advised.
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♪ locked up locked ♪ think about things ♪ thinking about some things that never change in the game ♪ ♪ i'm locked up >> there's a regular occurrence at the maricopa county jail in phoenix that most inmates eventually grow used to. >> clothes on. stay where you're at. let them go in the shower. put something on before they come out. >> officers conduct contraband shake-downs on a regular basis including those in the women's facility, estrella jail. >> i'm sorry we disturbed your beauty sleep. >> welcome to jail. >> while the main goal of these shakedowns is to find drugs or weapons, the officers will confiscate anything else inmates are not authorized to have or in christina ranich's case, an authorized item that's been altered for things that it wasn't intended. >> i got in trouble. >> what happened?
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>> i was just demonstrating how to make a thing. i got busted. one of them soap bars. a dildo. >> she had it in her hand and they were making it right now so i just grabbed it from her. >> she's all, give me it. she's like what the [ bleep ] is this? i'm like, it's a soap bar. >> it's bars of soap and put it together and wet it and then -- turn it into that, i guess. >> while possessing improvised sex toys is against jail rules, ranich caught a break this time. >> i did not write her up only because it wasn't something she could hurt anybody with, so i just threw it away. >> in another part of the estrella jail, inmate michelle vasquez is concerned more with matters of the heart than of the flesh. she just received the poem from
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her boyfriend, fellow inmate harry martin, better known as boo. >> i write this for you in the sweetest sense with love and longing. this is true romance. if i were a free man, i'd whisk you away. we'd be on the -- we'd be on the way but in love come what may and flowers, yes, flowers, you know which ones, the ones that grow tall and mimic the sun. from mesa to clean creek, a.j. to the east, i will cry your name and then repeat, i love you, i love you, i love you. i've got to make you see what you mean to me, michelle, my belle. love always, boo. >> let me see. >> thank you.
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>> can i tell him what i want to tell him? i love you too and i'm sorry. i'm sorry that i'm not out there holding it down for you. but when they let me out, i'll see you at the gate. >> it could be a while, though. if she is convicted on all of her robbery and burglary charges vasquez could face up to 25 years but she hopes to plea bargain it down to seven or less and shortly after sending his poem, her boyfriend boo reached a plea deal of 4 1/2 years and was transferred to prison. jon antonucci is still awaiting sentencing but now a local newspaper has just printed a scathing article about him. >> is that article fair?
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>> with the amount of damage that i've caused, anything's fair. >> the article states that antonucci was a very popular and charismatic karate instructor but also a liar and a thief who eventually participated in the torching of his employer's office building. >> i went from what they called their best instructor to an enemy that now they think is going to come back for retaliation. i don't want to be the enemy. i want to be the best instructor. >> what happens after this article? does that have an impact? >> obviously not favorable. but it's just. the judge is probably going to read it. he's going to see my tangled web of lies and when i stand in that courtroom and i tell him i'm
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sorry, i doubt he'll believe a word i say. >> the newspaper that published the article on antonucci is the same one joe watson used to write for on the outside. and now, ironically, after a routine cell reassignment, the jail has made watson and antonucci cellmates. >> the object is to try and get them to stay in the sink, which is extremely difficult because they do that. >> the new cellies have helped each other battle boredom by finding another use for dominos. >> four days is -- i would have had to do a minimum of ten push-ups for every one i couldn't get in the sink, i would have to do an additional ten. >> john i think has lived a fairly sheltered life, so it's hard for us to connect as far as popular culture. i think he told me he saw his first film when he was like 15, 16, something like that. you know, i've asked him if he's
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seen this movie, that movie. he's never even heard of most of the movies i want to talk to him about. we finally found a connection to talk about last night. he's seen "office space" and "office space" is my favorite of all time. >> isn't it about a couple of disgruntled employees that smash some of the equipment from the company and hatch a plot to -- >> burn down the building? >> yes. >> yes, yes, it is about a couple people who burn down the building and i don't think that the irony was lost on jon either. i actually asked him if he got the idea from the film and he says no. >> that's it. that's full now. just a challenge. >> christina ranich is no longer in the mood for games after a visit from her lawyer. >> i hate that. >> what? >> everywhere you go you get handcuffed. it sucks. >> she's been charged with
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identity theft and trafficking stolen property and because she was already on probation, if found guilty, she could be facing up to 34 years in prison but the prosecutor has just offered her a plea bargain for five years. >> i don't know what to do. i talked to my fiancee finally. he said don't take it because i think i can get it lower maybe. i don't know what they have on me. i really don't. so it's iffy. my daughter will be 10. that's not cool. it's a long time. coming up -- >> i don't know what the hell i expected. i didn't expect this. >> christina ranich receives her sentence. >> i'm scared. >> i am too. >> and jon antonucci finds out what's in store for him, as well.
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for most inmates at the maricopa county jail, the future lies on a calculated risk, accept a plea bargain for a moderate sentence or go to trial. go to trial and win, you walk free. lose and you risk getting a maximum sentence. christina ranich chose to accept a five-year plea on charges of i.d. theft and trafficking stolen property. but things don't always go as planned. >> i expected five years and i didn't expect them to stack my charges. i don't know what the hell i expected. i didn't expect this. this is not what i expected. >> because ranich committed her latest crimes while on parole
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for other offenses, the judge decided to add the 2 1/2 years left on her prior sentence to the 5 year plea deal for a total of 7 1/2 years. >> everybody was there. i mean, mom was crying, my brother was crying, my fiancee was crying. >> to make matters worse, ranich's children were not at the sentencing. but another group of children were. >> there's a field trip at my court. they had all kinds of people come in, little kids, about two rows full on the prosecutor's side so they could watch and learn like what not to do and what to do and i was their example. that made me feel like this big. >> since ranich will be transferred within hours, her fiancee has come to say good-bye. between them, they have three children. >> did you tell the girls yet? >> no, i haven't told them. i'll tell them tonight.
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>> i don't know what to tell them. don't tell them how long i got for real. just tell them that they made it flat. >> you know i ain't going to lie to them. >> i know but don't please don't make them cry. i don't want them to try. >> how am i going to tell them? >> i don't know. >> i'm just going to tell them -- >> don't tell her how old she will be. just let her figure it out for herself because i know she's like -- >> she's pretty quick with it now too. >> i know. damn it. >> that's why she yelled. i'll be 11 when she gets out. >> well, there's a bunch of classes i could take for good time or whatever that i know of anyway. i'm scared. >> i am too. i love you. >> all right. i'm getting up. i love you. >> i love you too.
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>> give the girls kisses. >> how are you doing? how was your visit? >> sad. i go to prison today. >> okay, ma'am, you can go and have a seat. >> while christina ranich copes with the reality of her future, jon antonucci is about to find out what's in store for him. he's only moments away from a court appearance where he will receive his sentence. the one bright spot for antonucci is that he's joined by two friends who he hasn't seen in nine months. jeffrey otto and monisa morio worked with antonucci as fellow karate instructors at young champions. they've also been charged in connection with the fire that burned down the company's office and resulted in the death of a fourth instructor, the man who started the fire, josh robinson.
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while prosecutors say antonucci was the ringleader, his co-defendants still respect him. >> you're going to get through this, jon. it's gonna be just a blur. it's not forever. it's going to be okay. i pray for you. >> in a way, john is still a good friend of mine. really upbeat and energetic guy, really nice, really religious, too. now you just gotta worry about making it through, okay? >> god will get us through. it's not about me. >> i know. but i don't like seeing you like this. >> he's a good guy. he's very -- he's very driven, you know. he likes to achieve stuff, you know, he likes to go out there and make a difference. i just really do hope they see that when it comes to sentencing. >> as co-defendants, maria and otto are allowed to attend
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antonucci's sentencing. each of them will have a day in court in the future. as the sentencing hearing gets under way, the judge allows antonucci's victims to express their thoughts about him. >> he says he's a religious man. i question how true his religion is. he is a liar and a cheater and a thief and a very hateful person. >> i believe he ruined the lives of the others involved by brainwashing them to assist him when he was the only one to gain. this just did not have to happen. your honor, i urge you to see who the real jon antonucci is. he deserves to be punished to the maximum extent. >> finally, antonucci himself is allowed to address the judge. >> what would you like to tell me?
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>> that all i can do is serve my prison sentence and use that to start to demonstrate how sorry i am. and how much i want to make right on this. although i know i can never fully make right on what i did. >> and finally antonucci's moment of reckoning has arrived. >> if all things were equal, the sentence would be 10 1/2 years. i don't think all things were equal.
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the time has arrived for christina ranich to say her good-byes. she is about to leave maricopa for prison where she will begin a 7 1/2-year sentence.
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>> here, mary. >> thank you. >> i won't forget you. >> i love you. >> all right. >> i just gave all my stuff to my friends here that i consider my friends. and i have to roll up my stuff and clean my bunk and wait for them. i've been waiting for this day for five months. i'm ready to go. >> bye, christina. >> bye. >> bye. >> can i take your dildo? >> she sold it for two items. >> ranich is only permitted to take her legal paperwork and some snacks for the bus ride. >> are you ready? >> yeah.
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i'm ready. anxious. >> i have an extensive criminal history. i'm where i need to be and i don't think i was very good when i was out there. i mean, i could have been better. i know i can be better. >> joe watson committed armed robbery after his gambling addiction spiraled out of control. but that didn't stop him from taking the biggest gamble of his life after he landed in jail. facing a possible sentence of 25 to life, he's chosen to represent himself. but that gamble has paid off. >> filing so many motions, my prosecutor in response to one of my motions has basically conceded that i'm not facing any more than 9.25 years and i had to read it about three times over and over and over again
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before i finally got it. and it was really emotional. it was really an emotional moment, because after sitting in here for three years now and not knowing what's going to happen and believing that there was even potential for me to spend the rest of my life in prison and now that that is completely gone, knowing that i will have an actual second chance at life, you know, a chance to redeem myself. it's a huge relief. if something is unjust and unfair, you have to fight. unfortunately, so many guys come in here and have been through the system so many times before, that this place gets to them. they just want to get out of here as quickly as possible so they'll just sign the first thing that comes their way instead of fighting and for me giving up was just never an option. >> watson is optimistic about the future. but today his thoughts are also with his cellmate jon antonucci who is in court for sentencing.
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he could be facing anywhere from 7 to 21 years. >> i told him to wake me up this morning when he went to court. we talked for a little bit. he was very nervous. he was shaking. he was near tears and i was near tears for him. i know he's done some dumb things too but he is a good person. i know that inside jon is a good person, and i hope that the judge saw that today. so i'm just waiting on him to come back and give me the news. i think that no matter what happens, if jon got seven years or if jon got 21 years, jon is going to be okay. >> about the aggravating factors -- >> but now it's all up to the judge. >> mitigating factors. all things were equal the sentence would be 10 1/2 years. i don't think all things were equal. therefore, i sentence you to a term in the department of corrections of 14 years. it is a large amount of time.
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i do not do this lightly. i do this with concern and respect for everyone in this courtroom including you. i'm sorry that this happened to all of you. i hope that people can heal and i wish the best for everyone. >> what did you get? >> they cut it in half? >> 14. it's fair. the prosecutor asked for 21. of course all the victims asked for 21. my attorney asked for no more than 10 and, you know, weighing everything together, the judge said 14. so -- >> it'll be all right, buddy. it'll be all right.
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>> now that he's received his sentence, antonucci has only a few days left at maricopa county before his transfer to state prison. >> the next few days it will be spent writing and making phone calls and, you know, preparing myself, i guess, mentally and spiritually. this is my time to fix all of the problems that were listed today in court. there's a lot of problems that people have with me. this is an opportunity for me to take the time to fix those problems. you know, i mean, you never know when but probably sunday night or monday night i'll be taken to a place called alhambra, which i've never been, and from there, i don't know.
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due to mature subject matter, viewer discretion is advised. i don't pray with bibles, i pray with false idols, smith & wesson and being suicidal, i have no enemies, just deceased rivals. >> no matter the circumstances that brought them to jail. >> i was walking my dog, had a pistol at my head. >> she said we were making out that my hand touched her. >> i was cashing $50,000, $60,000 checks a pop. >> jail will have a profound effect on who they will become.

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