The Committee for the Greater Good
Fair Trial for Aamil Aziz

What is needed for a fair trial?

Money and compassion

New trauma-informed attorney

New trauma-informed expert witnesses 

Admission to Felony Mental Health Court

Admitted to State Hospital for mentally ill felons 

Current challenges for a fair trial:

Lack of money and compassion

Attorney not trauma informed

Expert witnesses not trauma informed

Lack of information and legal aid

Present Attorney: conflicts of interest

Earth 101

Listen to Earth 101’s PODCAST with Aamil’s mother, Hitaji, speaking about Aamil’s story and how complex trauma connects to the masses who are incarcerated in this country. (40:21)

Donation Options

Some of you know that our GoFundMe account was taken down because of  the GoFundMe rules about criminal cases. The money that we had raised was returned to the donors and we now have less time to raise the funds.  So, we have created a whole new platform for receiving donations and it feels and looks wonderful.

I have consulted with one attorney who is trauma-informed with an integrated approach when dealing with complex trauma. Her quote was $15,000 for a retainer fee and $40,000 for her total fee. An expert witness could add extra cost.  So, we are raising $55.000 to cover what might be needed.


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Our Purpose

Greetings, we are writing to you about a person by the name of Aamil Aziz, a man in Texas who will be convicted and sentenced to 40 years at the age of forty-eight for an accidental death that he only partially remembers. Currently his lifelong history of complex trauma will not be adequately addressed in court without a trauma-informed attorney and an expert witness trained in dissociative personality disorder and such complex trauma.

Because Aamil is mentally ill, his illness needs to be considered in these legal proceedings. Any expert witness and attorney must understand how trauma can cause terrible consequences like the ones Aamil experienced, and they must be willing to do the research to back up his defense. The court appointed attorney that he has now is not trauma informed. She has not taken advantage of legal resources available to Aamil, and she should be preparing to argue that Aamil be incarcerated at the Rusk Texas State hospital for mentally ill felons because too much of his trauma is already prison related.    

The Committee for the Greater Good, along with Aamil’s mother, is seeking ways to support him by raising the funds needed to hire an appropriate attorney. As of now we have not found a pro bono attorney to take his case. Most organizations that provide pro bono services in Houston are overwhelmed. 

Do you know of any organizations or individuals who would donate their time, financial resources, or provide referrals to help support our efforts? If so, please share our information with them quickly because his trial is next month. You may contact us directly with such information. You can donate now; any assistance is helpful—please send prayers for Aamil’s future and others who are emotionally and mentally challenged while in prison. Mental illness is radical problem in the United States prison system, and we need to find a more compassionate way to confine people who might not be safe for self or others.

On this page you will find a Press Kit of information that will help you download (PDF) and share all that you need to share with friends, individuals, and organizations quickly.

Hitaji Aziz, MA, counseling psychology. Eric Malory, Computer Coach, Shadow Work, Mankind Project Facilitator. Doyle Odom, audio engineer, recorded and mixed, Sherri Kiarsis, graphic design and website maintenance, Dr. M. Yvonne Taylor, intersectional feminist, critical organizational scholar, ethnographer, and educator.

Michele Pola, EdD Mindfulness Facilitator Mind Body Spirit Institute, The Jung Center, American Leadership Forum #24. Susan Brown, MA, LPC, CBIS (Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Brain Injury Specialist, Victoria Barnes, Ph.D., who specializes in Depth Psychology and is a lifelong educator, Nasim Hoomanrad, Social worker, Reiki Master, Spiritual Coach, Consultant, Photographer.

Our Challenge: Trauma Informed

Re:  This is the written list of grievances filed with the Harris County Criminal Court written by Hitaji Aziz. The day after this was filed, she was able to file a formal legal document for her son requesting a new lawyer based on Conflict of Interest.            

  • To: Court Appointed Lawyer 
  • To: Judge in charge
  • From: Hitaji Aziz (Sheila) Mother

To whom it may concern,

We need a new lawyer who is trauma informed with a holistic approach and without a conflict of interest with this case. The present lawyer has a personal conflict of interest in reference to the murder of her own brother. My son’s attorney told me on the phone that her  brother was murdered and for a while she did not take murder cases. She also mentioned to me that the Judge who will be over the case was her friend.

Eventually, when visiting my son a week ago, he mentioned that she told him that her brother was murdered, and he said it made him uncomfortable. How can we have a fair trial if the judge is her friend? Why do we have to know her personal information? She made it a point to tell  both of us. It is unprofessional and scary for us. We have nowhere to turn because that makes the judge not neutral.

My son has mental health issues. He needed to be transferred to the Felony Mental Health Court a year ago. We were never told that it existed. Mental illness is just being addressed at this late stage. My son is suicidal, and his last attempt was just a year ago. He experiences memory loss and does not remember all of what happened on the day his friend was killed. He has complex trauma, dissociating personality disorder possible (DID) just to name a few. We are hoping that he can go to Rusk State Hospital for long term treatment in their felony mental health division.

She acts like she is on the prosecutor’s side. She acts like she does not like her job and the number of cases that she has. We feel intimidated. How can we know that the trauma from her brother’s murder and her workload will not affect her defense of my son? She inappropriately took time to describe the stomach of the victim after the stabbing to me. I will carry that image for the rest of my life. The attorney appears to suffer from Vicarious Trauma which is high for criminal defense lawyers.

She told my son  that  the murder was an accident, and the court knew that on both sides. She went on to tell him that his case is like throwing spaghetti on the wall and whatever  sticks then the court will go with that. He says that she is pressuring him to bargain with the judge and seems irritated that he will not take her direction.

My son says that she acts more like the prosecuting side and not a defender for him. We do not feel safe. We are receiving a low-quality to almost dead defense with no real investigation of his mental illness, mental health hospital records never ordered. No real research, no plan, no hope. She told me that  his case was like a death penalty as I was walking out of the court and that was it. I told her that I would help in any way to share info about his mental health a year ago.

Recently, she called and told me that she saw my son acting strangely as if other people were trying to speak through his mouth and his face was distorted. She was very alarmed and excited on the phone. She said that her assistant was seeing my son act like that. I emailed her tons of information with the correct terminology to describe what I told her a year ago.

During this phone call she informed me that the Houston Fire Department formally reported that the fire at my son’s house was because of arson. They said that they had to go in and take him out of a burning house as he lay on the bed. She said that a person in their right mind would not do that (not exact words). This was the first time she acknowledged mental health issues.

The attorney found Ms. Bailey to an expert eyewitness who came three weeks ago and who never came back to finish her psychological testing. My son stated that the testing was half done, and she was supposed to come back . The attorney did not know if Ms. Bailey was trauma informed, she told me to ask Ms. Bailey because she did not know.

When I first met this attorney by phone I was startled. She ranted nonstop with agitation and distress in her voice about her workload, how much time she had to spend in court, how many times that I had called. I realized that she was talking about another client and had me confused.

I eventually stopped her and told her I was a new client. I realized that I would have to be as nice as I could be. I made it a habit of complimenting her because I did not want to upset her, but it never made a difference in upgrading how she managed our case.

We would like to be transferred to programs like the Harris County Public Defenders, Restoring Justice or the special court for mentally ill felons so we can be treated with care and respect for our humanity.

Thank you for your time.

Hitaji Aziz

Use This Letter Template for Outreach

Do you know of any organizations or individuals who would donate their time, financial resources, or provide referrals to help support our efforts? If so, please share our information with them quickly because his trial is next month.

The Background Information That You Need

I am the mother of Aamil Aziz. My name is Hitaji Aziz. My main purpose and intention for this moment is to be  his best ally , to inform people about his case and the money needed to make sure he will have a fair trial. I initiated “The Committee for the Greater Good” which has turned out to be a very small band of allies supporting me and my son Aamil and others like him for this moment. I am grateful.

My name is Hitaji Aziz. I have volunteered in the non-profit sector with marginalized communities and organizations since I was 13 years old. I have been a long-term community activist, and I am now 70. I am a mother, and I am a grandmother. I am a holistic healer currently mindfully supporting my oldest son.

My son is a 48-year-old African American man facing 40 years in prison for an accidental death. My son got into a fight with his friend who he lived with over his stolen rent money. The friend’s girlfriend, who was also his friend, got in between the two  and she  was stabbed, died two weeks later, turning aggravated assault into a murder case.

There was a knife and a hammer involved. She made a formal statement to the police that it was an accident before she died. Currently he is housed at the Harris County jail in Houston. His trial is on May 11, 2024. Because of complex PTSD mental disabilities, he only partially remembers the event in which his friend died and after he was hit with a hammer.

He has been emotionally challenged for decades. He would hide in sewers and climb on top of buildings. He would often disappear for weeks or months, and his last disappearance was for almost seven years. He has presented symptoms of dissociative personality disorder—he has various nicknames, blackouts, has heard voices, and has been trapped in a matrix of suicide attempts and risky living for years. The judicial system failed Aamil and they failed to notice that he was emotionally injured and not simply a bad boy, as they might think. 

The mental health system failed Aamil and did not know how to help our family system holistically. His  mental illness  was planted with generations of mental illness within his family system along with dysfunctional parents who suffered with their own complex PTSD, raised in a violent family system, raped while still in elementary school by pedophile babysitters, abused by the police, abused in juvenile systems, raped, and abused in a Texas boot camp where he was made to wear tampons and came home with burn marks on his stomach. He was told to man up.

When Aamil became involved with the judicial system and the trauma was deepened while revolving in and out of the judicial system. He was always less of who he was every time he came home. His Spirit was slowly being killed, but he kept trying to be normal. 

I am not the only mother or father who has been in this position of having a loved one who is mentally challenged with complex trauma while involved with the criminal justice system and because of this my purpose is also to care about other families who are having the same experience. There are millions who have loved ones who are residents of the Harris County jail system in Houston, the Texas Department of Corrections, and the American prison system in general.

Some of you know that our GoFundMe account was taken down because of  the GoFundMe rules about criminal cases. The money that we had raised was returned to the donors and we now have less time to raise the funds .  So, we have created a whole new platform for receiving donations and it feels and looks wonderful.

I have consulted with one attorney who is trauma-informed with an integrated approach when dealing with complex trauma. Her quote was $15,000 for a retainer fee and $40,000 for her total fee. An expert witness could add extra cost.  So, we are raising $55.000 to cover what might be needed.

Make a Donation

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has told my son and me that her brother was murdered, and it took her a while to take on any case like Aamil’s. She has mentioned that twice, as well as saying she is friends with the judge. We feel this is completely unprofessional. She has witnessed firsthand Aamil’s mental issues but never referred him to the special court for felony mental health. In addition, his last suicide attempt was last January when the Houston Fire Department pulled him out of a burning house.

My son will live longer and might have a chance to heal if he can be committed to a place like Rusk State hospital in Texas, which is a place where he wants to be, or in an institution that would provide a place to help heal his complex trauma. Decades of continuous trauma in the Texas prison system, which has already contributed to the state of his mental health, will serve no purpose, and escalate his illness. He now lives in one of the most dangerous jails in the country.

We realized that Rusk might not be an ideal place, but we hope it is a safer  and less traumatizing environment  than the Texas Department of Corrections. We realize that he is currently not safe alone with himself or  with others without supervision. We do not want him to be thrown away like trash, and we know mentally challenged poor Black men  are not valued in America or the prison system. The sad thing about it is that my son does not always appear or seem mentally ill which causes him to be misdiagnosed or overlooked. Aamil was never the same after the first rape. Emotionally we are still waiting for him to come home.

Harris County, Texas has "some of the highest jailing and incarceration rates in the U.S. and the world." 

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More Information


Sister Helen Prejean grew up in the Jim Crow South, joined the Sisters of St. Joseph at the age of 17, and emerged to become the leading voice against the death penalty in the USA. This film by Joe Cardona and José L. Vázquez documents the influences that shaped Sister Helen’s path from a cloistered environment to a vocal advocate for justice.

Featuring Sister Helen Prejean, Susan Sarandon, Tim Robbins, Terrance McNally, and Jake Heggie.

Locking People Up Is No Way to Treat Mental Illness 

If we stopped using prisons to warehouse psychiatric patients, we could heal people and save tax dollars.

By Norm Ornstein and Steve Leifman

The Definition of Insanity Documentary

Exploring a Revolutionary Approach to Solving the Mental Health Crisis

That could be a model for the nation

NAMI Policy Priorities: Mental Health Treatment While Incarcerated

NAMI believes that all people with mental health conditions who are incarcerated deserve access to quality mental health treatment. NAMI supports public policies and laws that expand and improve access to mental health care within prison and jail settings.

Fact Sheet: Vicarious Trauma

How Being Trauma-Informed Improves Criminal Justice System Responses.

The Vision

Aamil transfers to the Felony Mental Health Court.

Present attorney is replaced.

Find a suitable attorney to take our case pro bono and is backed by a strong organization.

Email our story to as many people as possible.

Tap the shoulders of the wealthy.

Email our story to trauma-informed attorneys/expert witnesses and refer them to us.

Aamil is sent to Rusk State Hospital.

Hitaji Aziz

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Peacemaker Enterprise

The Peacemaker Intention

  • To be a dynamic beneficial presence on this planet
  • To be rooted in the practice of self-care and community care by reducing chronic stress and trauma
  • To create a mindful lifestyle of generational abundance and service