Criminal Justice V


CASE 1: Wayne Kellestine, one of the suspects in the murders of eight men was sentenced to two years less a day in 2000 for drug and weapon charges, 30 months for bank robbery in 2001, and two years in a federal penitentiary after pleading guilty to 22 weapons charges in 2002. Why was this man not in prison?

CASE 2 : Johnathan’s older brother appeared to show no emotion as the jury handed him a first- degree murder conviction. The youths cannot be named because they were minors at the time of the killing. which left 71 stab wounds in Johnathan’s body. His lawyer, Robert Nuttall, said he will ask that his client be sentenced as a youth, which carries a 10-year maximum sentence – instead of 25 years if he is sentenced as an adult.

CASE 3 : Matthew Bergeron, after much premeditation, developed a plan to, and subsequently succeeded in luring children into his home, offering them alcohol and drugs, and finally raping them. Fortunately, he admitted guilt, blaming his actions on his substance abuse troubles. Then, armed with the doubt-free knowledge of his guilt, Ontario Court Justice Micheline Rawlins handed down the stiff sentence: 18 months in jail.

CASE 4 : Letter to the Toronto Sun: After reading “Stabber off to jail” (Apr. 5) I am left with the impression that this is totally what’s wrong with our justice system. Seventeen prior convictions and all he gets is two years for an unprovoked attack on an innocent stranger. It’s enough to make you scream.

CASE 5 : One of Windsor’s most prolific thieves was sentenced to three years in prison Thursday for his latest of 53 convictions. Given the standard two-for-one credit for the 71/2 months he has spent in jail, Meloche was sentenced to an additional 23 months, to be served in a federal penitentiary. Meloche had 51 prior convictions, most of them for similar property crimes. Most were committed while he was on probation for other thefts. One was for a theft he committed while serving a sentence in Windsor Jail.

Where is our outrage? Our criminal justice system is a sad joke. Neil Boyd, a criminologist at Simon Fraser University in B.C. said, “Sentences are already pretty tough for serious crime. It’s one of the few areas of public policy where science consistently . . . has taken a back seat to just blind faith and politics.” Sentences are tough? Then why not enforce them? Counter Mr. Boyd statement with that of police Staff Sgt. Ed McNorton, “The repeat offenders are a big issue for us, when they’re in custody, our crime stats go down.” And from another letter to the editor, this gem, “I have 20 years experience as a correctional officer, so I feel I can offer some insight into how the criminals feel about our justice system. A vast majority think it is a joke for the following reasons: Programming works for those who want it, with more than 70% returning to prison within five years. These people often return within days of release.”
When will we ever learn, when will we ever learn…………………

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