"I find you to be guilty of stealing employee coffee fund money," said Judge Gary Mulkey with a rap of his gavel at the 2010 Hermiston March of Dimes Jail & Bail. "You are hereby sentenced to an hour's worth of jail time with bail set at $400."
On June 15, participants who were 'turned in' to the organization reported to conference room one at Good Shepherd Medical Center. Each person was charged with a (fictional) crime such as working under the influence of caffeine or repeatedly smiling in a no smiling zone. Each volunteer was then photographed behind bars and booked for an hour of jail time.
March of Dimes is a non-profit organization that works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.
During their time in the pretend lock up, participants used their cell phones and laptops to contact friends and family members to help them raise their bail.
"We like to say that $1,000 dollars is a reasonable goal," said community director Jaime Bagnariol.
Not all of the participants agreed.
"I thought that [the judge] was a little steep for a first time offender," said Gigi Cirrincione, with a bail of $350.
Others such as Fire Chief Pat Hart didn't mind so much.
"Helping babies helps get people out and it brings the community together," he said.
About 60 people turned out for the event. The money they raised will be used to support various pregnancy resource groups and research grants for Oregon Health Science University, University of Oregon and Oregon State University.