Saturday April 19, 2014
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I'm sure you've all read the article ("One Bad Fraud... Leads To Another") about the woman who tried to make a down payment on court-ordered restitution with bad checks.
Not clever? Of course. Needs to be punished? You bet!
On the other hand, since the woman owes $30,000 in restitution charges, one might ask if 19 years in jail going to accomplish any of these four often-stated goals of "justice?"
• Providing restitution for those who were harmed.
• Letting the punishment fit the crime.
• Reinstating the individual as a contributing member of society.
• Deterring other criminals.
If not, is there a better solution?
What is it?
And why do we have mandatory sentencing laws which tie the hands of judges and juries in setting sentences? Who is responsible for it? What is their motivation?
Mandatory sentencing is stupid in my opinion.
We will spend hundreds of thousands of dollars keeping this woman in jail. Bed, board, clothes, free medical and the money will never be repaid to the people she stole it from.
Let her out, make her work and take a $ amount out of every pay check for restitution.
NO free medical, no food stamps or any other freebies. Only be allowed to leave her home to work, shop for food, and other necessitys. No alcohol or smoking material.
Would you all like me for a judge ? (:
I have read comments made on sites around the state and elsewhere by people who claim that a conspiracy exists between private prisons and legislative action regarding mandatory sentencing. Interesting thought, isn't it?
I agree with you, Pat, but only to a certain extent. My interest would be in getting her back to work and getting the money paid back to those who were hurt**. I can see where it would be hard for someone to make restitution in today's hard times, so that may have been part of her problem. Trust me, I am no softy.
In any event, I see no logic in putting her in prison for 19 years for stealing $30,000 while CEO's and other corporate executives merely have to have the corporation pay back a portion of the millions they steal. Take the Medicare fraud over in CA. They sent people out on the street to bring in hobos to get something life half a billion dollars in phony treatments. Who went to jail? No one. How much paid back? No much. Who pays it? The investors in the corporation. How did did the crooks themselves pay back? Nothing. If that's justice I'm a purple polka dotted Martian.
**Here's an interesting legal theory that just popped into my head. Since it is the duty of the Federal Government and the State of Arizona to protect us from fraud, we have a right to demand reimbursement from them if they do anything which interferes with our being reimbursement from criminals. In other words: You want to stick somebody in jail instead of having him work to pay me back? Good. YOU pay me back!
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