Pitcher's 'Deal' A Blow To Domestic Violence Campaign

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The month of October is annually designated as Domestic Violence Awareness Month a month-long campaign to heighten awareness of the biggest health risk facing women today.

Oh, the irony.

Last Tuesday, the domestic violence awareness campaign suffered a slap in the face with the proposed plea agreement of former Diamondbacks pitcher Bobby Chouinard.

Chouinard was arrested last December, according to a Phoenix police report, for choking his wife, throwing her down and holding a loaded gun to her head.

In his plea agreement, Chouinard who now pitches for the Colorado Rockies would have to spend a year in jail, pay a $25,000 fine, and appear in 10 public service announcements denouncing the horrors of domestic violence.

Here's the kicker: if the plea agreement is accepted by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Stephen Gerst, Chouinard would serve his jail sentence three months at a time during baseball's off-season over a period of four years. That way, Chouinard's attorney deduces, Chouinard can keep his family together and keep his baseball career in-tact.

If John Q. Public were arrested for the same offense dangerous aggravated assault he'd likely be looking at a minimum of five years in prison.

That's justice?

Not only does this so-called deal elevate a mediocre pitcher to celebrity status where the rules of modern law obviously don't apply, it also teaches our children a terrible lesson about domestic violence: If you want to beat up on women, become a professional sports figure.

Chouinard's "deal" is the worst thing proposed in Maricopa County since House Speaker Jeff Grosscost's alternate fuel fiasco.

On this last day of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we encourage readers to demand that justice be served.

Send your opinions to Judge Stephen Gerst at Maricopa County Superior Court, 201 W. Jefferson, Phoenix, AZ 85003-2243.

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