Patterico's Pontifications

7/12/2014

Why Do We Have the Death Penalty? For Guys Like This.

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:25 am

This guy is a walking threat, every day of his life:

A state prison guard in Soledad was stabbed in the back of the head Friday by an inmate who allegedly slipped out of his handcuffs and went at him with a handmade shank, a spokesman said.

The attack happened just before 1 p.m. as two guards took 48-year-old David Gomez out of a disciplinary isolation cell for an interview at Salinas Valley State Prison in Soledad, southeast of Monterey, Salinas Valley State Prison Lt. Darren Chamberlain said.

The guard was taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, but his current condition is unknown, Chamberlain said.

Gomez, who has a history of mental illness, was transferred from Sacramento to Monterey County for pretrial proceedings in the 2004 murder of his cellmate at Salinas Valley State Prison.

Gomez is serving a life sentence in a 1998 Los Angeles County case for rape, oral copulation on a minor under age 14 and burglary.

I don’t know if the death penalty is even available in the 2004 murder case. But if it is, I hope prosecutors are seriously evaluating whether to apply it. This guy certainly appears to be likely to hurt more people if we just leave him in prison. He’s already killed one person in custody and stabbed another in the head.

What is society supposed to do with someone like that?

95 Responses to “Why Do We Have the Death Penalty? For Guys Like This.”

  1. But life in prison means he can’t kill again, right? Jurors should be reminded that other inmates and guards are still at risk even with life without possibility of parole.

    Not that it matters so long as the state and federal courts continue to slow-walk the endless appeals.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  2. America has plenty more like him. So does the whole world.

    Gather them up, put them in a completely open prison, no doors, no locks, no guards, food air dropped.

    No booze, no smokes, no drugs and no guards to corrupt to get them.

    Let mother nature sort them out.

    Fred Z (320d8a)

  3. BTW, I am pretty sure that opposition to the death penalty is in large part traceable to the “Perry Mason” TV show, with DA Hamilton (“Doofus”) Burger’s attempt to railroad all those innocent people.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  4. What is society supposed to do with someone like that?

    How about surgically removing both of his arms at the elbow?

    JVW (feb406)

  5. Fred,

    Why not booze & smokes and drugs? Give them something to fight over.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  6. “What is society supposed to do with someone like that?”

    Run him for Congress as a Democrat? The history of mental illness and pedophilia will make him fit right in.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  7. How did Gomez have possession of a homemade shank while in a disciplinary isolation cell? How was Gomez able to slip out of his handcuffs?

    Who was the other guard and did he/she have a grudge against the injured guard? This incident, as described, falls well outside safe handling standards for dangerous offenders like Gomez. This doesn’t pass the smell test.

    ropelight (4da1b1)

  8. The Democrat Caucus in the State Senate is looking for new members.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  9. Gather them up, put them in a completely open prison, no doors, no locks, no guards, food air dropped.

    What with the ongoing RIF’s and Sequestration, I imagine San Clemente Island will need to be re-purposed.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  10. Why?

    ropelight (4da1b1)

  11. Maybe the part about “who has a history of mental illness” should be bolded, too?

    Leviticus (7adc16)

  12. should be bolded, too?

    Better to emphasize the way that a liberal mindset that results in weeping over deranged, dangerous people like a David Gomez — even though such a mindset exists in people who may be fully aware that their socio-political preferences will set up future victims of characters like Gomez — oddly and ironically enough emanates from folks who believe they’re such compassionate, kind-hearted, humane souls.

    Mark (8cacab)

  13. You, of all people, should be grateful for laws that protect the deranged, Mark.

    nk (dbc370)

  14. Squish, squish, nk.

    Mark (8cacab)

  15. Whether this person is mentally ill or not, he is still a threat to people inside the prison. And he would be a threat to people inside a mental institution.
    I say execute him. That way, he will no longer be a threat to anyone.

    Elephant Stone (5c2aa0)

  16. Good Allah, Mark. Who is “weeping over over deranged, dangerous people like a David Gomez”?

    What’s all this squish squish business? Is your apartment flooded from all the BS?

    elissa (886016)

  17. the cellmate he killed might could have been even worse

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  18. Is your apartment flooded from all the BS?

    Elissa, Yes, I’m having to wade through a puddle of people who either can’t understand or become resentful about the phenomenon of compassion for compassion’s sake.

    Mark (8cacab)

  19. What with the ongoing RIF’s and Sequestration, I imagine San Clemente Island will need to be re-purposed.

    No, put them on one of the islands up in the Aleutians. One of those with few people but lots of Brown bears.

    Mike Giles (930031)

  20. 11. Maybe the part about “who has a history of mental illness” should be bolded, too?
    Leviticus (7adc16) — 7/12/2014 @ 11:11 am

    What are you, his defense attorney? What inmate in Soledad hasn’t had someone claim on their behalf a bad childhood or a “history of mental illness” in an attempt to get the off or at least convince a judge to lessen their sentence?

    What is “mental illness” anyway? Former congress critter Jesse Jackson Jr. tried to convince a judge he was bi-polar and that’s why he embezzled nearly a cool million from his campaign war chest. It didn’t work for him either. The term “mental illness” means everything and nothing. I’d bet any congress critter on trial for corruption could try to hide behind it. And they could get some professional to agree to the truth of the claim. After watching them lie pathologically for so long, I admit they probably aren’t right in the head to some degree. So? I’d still convict if I were on the jury and the prosecution had the evidence.

    “Not guilty by reason of insanity,” now that should be bolded. But we don’t have that here. This guy knew right from wrong, and is responsible for his actions. So the answer is no, there’s no reason to bold a meaningless, catch all term used in a failed courtroom tactic.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  21. In New Mexico, it is illegal for an unshaven female inmate to stab a state prison guard in the back of the head.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  22. 19.No, put them on one of the islands up in the Aleutians. One of those with few people but lots of Brown bears.
    Mike Giles (930031) — 7/12/2014 @ 12:07 pm

    Unfortunately, there aren’t Brown bears on the Aleutians. Not enough of a food base. Just Kodiak and the mainland.

    I would have done a tour on Adak if I thought I could get a Brown bear hunt out of it. Sigh.

    But the cheerful news is that even without Brown bears the Aleutians still have lots of ways to kill you.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  23. Whoops, my bad.

    I forgot about Unimak Island, the largest and first island in the Aleutian Island chain.

    Bu it’s more of an extension of the Alaskan Peninsula, lying just off the tip, than part of the Aleutian Islands, and therefore it’s wildlife is like what you’d find on the mainland. It’s the only Aleutian Island with Brown bears. Go west along chain and the largest native land animal is the fox.

    But please let’s not ruin a good hunting spot.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  24. What is society supposed to do with someone like that?

    I believe Democrats would elect him to a city office in San Francisco, then appoint him to a position either at a university or a non-profit.

    Rob Crawford (45d991)

  25. Well, Steve, Adak, was a prison, back when Russia owned Alaska,

    narciso (24b824)

  26. “What is society supposed to do with someone like that?”

    Well, they could put him in a cell with someone worse, of possible. Then wait for the results.

    Mike K (b5c01a)

  27. We need the death penalty as so many republican elected officials need to be put to death for killing so many people here and around the world. Now these fiends demand obama send the children back where many will be killed.

    vota (2c121a)

  28. vota – You can take this guy home along with the half dozen illegal immigrant children you agree to support bringing into this country. Yes you can!

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  29. When I wrote how mere “mental illness” shouldn’t spare someone the death penalty,Perry,I was thinking of you.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  30. Yep, one of the arguments the anti-death penalty folks make is “he won’t hurt anybody if he gets a life sentence.

    By the way, for another reason for the DP, Google “Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom.”

    DN (fda50e)

  31. Perry is fully in support of murdering millions of people who disagree with his socialist positions. As a septuagenarian (or is it octogenarian now?), it is entirely possible that Perry was a member of the Weather Underground in the 60s.

    John Hitchcock (2955aa)

  32. Mike Giles (930031) — 7/12/2014 @ 12:07 pm

    Shemya would have been perfect once the ‘listening station’ closed, but then they wanted to use it for a radar facility for the Star Wars Program of missile defense. Anybody know what they’re doing there now? It’s about the most God-forsaken rock in the Aleutians with no native inhabitants.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  33. It’s an ironic twist, as Timmerman notes, that Ambassador Stevens was inquiring over the circumstances of two fmr, Gitmo detainees, rendered back to Libya, one of whom Bin Qumu
    would be recruited to train Libyan rebels, and subsequently involved in the attack that
    claimed his life

    narciso (24b824)

  34. Steve57: “The term ‘mental illness’ means everything and nothing.”
    Indeed. I still recall a couple of lines from the trial of Lt. Calley, when I was still in high school. A psychiatrist was reporting on the results of the mental examination, and the questioning went like this:
    Q: “Is he psychotic?”
    A: “No.”
    Q: “Is he neurotic?”
    A: “Who isn’t?”

    Dr. Weevil (cd57f1)

  35. Mark #18 – most of the commenters in here not only understand compassion, they also realise that compassion without empathy is meaningless and often counter-productive …

    Compassion without empathy is also often demonstrated by that behaviour know as “enabling” …

    Compassion with empathy is often known as “tough love” and “discipline” … I commend both of those to you for your consideration …

    Alastor (2e7f9f)

  36. Maybe the part about “who has a history of mental illness” should be bolded, too?

    That could be a factor in determining whether death is appropriate. However, I am not going to take it for granted that it’s true, just because the L.A. Dog Trainer says so. What I do know is: he has been convicted of serious and violent offenses, is being tried for a murder committed in custody, and is alleged to have committed another serious offense against a guard. His mental illness apparently was not severe enough to merit a “not guilty by reason of insanity” verdict in his rape, oral copulation, and burglary case.

    With this fella, my overarching concern is the danger he poses to others. Hence the bolding where it occurs in the post.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  37. “A history of mental illness” could be anything from “poor impulse control” to chronic schizophrenia. Although if he was truly nuts he probably would not be where he was.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  38. There are something like 750 prisoners on death row in California. The judicial system has completely stopped executions through a variety of obstructions, from excessive delay to execution methods to the catch-22 of requiring medical professions to administer the drugs, while their licensing organization demands they do not.

    The political climate does not seem to promise change in this dysfunction any time soon.

    I despair.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  39. Even if he were found to be mentally ill, it does not remove the danger he poses – and will always pose – to others.

    If this case doesn’t meet standards for a death penalty, then at the very least, give the father, brother, uncle and grandfather of the 14 year old he raped in 1998 one hour alone with him. No consequences, no questions asked.

    Dana (4dbf62)

  40. It seems clear to me that locking him in prison does NOT stop him from killing anyone else. Rather, everyone else with whom he comes in contact, from other prisoners to guards, is at risk. If it’s not okay for him to attack people outside the prison, why should it be okay inside?

    Angela B. (ff625d)

  41. 40. …If it’s not okay for him to attack people outside the prison, why should it be okay inside?

    Angela B. (ff625d) — 7/12/2014 @ 4:37 pm

    It’s not. This is the one reason I support the DP. I don’t support the DP for reasons of retribution or to send messages. An incorrigible killer is unfit to live in society. No matter what else you may think of it prison is part of society. A fringe part, sure, but a part nonetheless.

    Guards shouldn’t have to risk death every day by dealing with such people, and neither should some guy doing five years for auto theft (and who will return to larger society, unless he’s killed first). A five year sentence should be just that, not a death sentence.

    The justification for the DP is the same as for lawful self defense; to protect lives from being unlawfully taken.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  42. FWIW, Kali doesn’t have a “diminished capacity” defense. They got rid of it after Dan White successfully argued it, and reduced his charge from 1st degree murder to voluntary manslaughter, after killing SF Mayor George Moscone and supervisor Harvey Milk in 1978. And yes, White got some expert to testify on his behalf that he was “mentally ill” but not criminally insane. It was popularly but erroneously known as the “Twinkie Defense.”

    You’re either not guilty by reason of insanity, or you’re responsible for your crime.

    Steve57 (cd4182)

  43. There are something like 750 prisoners on death row in California. The judicial system has completely stopped executions through a variety of obstructions, from excessive delay to execution methods to the catch-22 of requiring medical professions to administer the drugs, while their licensing organization demands they do not.

    Sounds like the judges are volunteering to host these prisoners in their own houses.

    Rob Crawford (45d991)

  44. Sounds like the judges are volunteering to host these prisoners in their own houses.

    Actually, they aren’t. But they do from time to time order the prison gates opened and lesser hoodlums freed, so that their hands are clean.

    Kevin M (b357ee)

  45. Compassion with empathy is often known as “tough love” and “discipline”

    Alastor, I’d say that a definition of “tough love” — or the antithesis of compassion for compassion’s sake — is not that of compassion intertwined with empathy, but of compassion intertwined with common sense and basic logic. The reason I favor that interpretation over one that uses “empathy” is because of how “empathy” can be easily cheapened or end up as exploited as “compassion” has become (eg, where someone like George W Bush believed that “conservative” must be qualified with the adjective of “compassionate”).

    greatergood.berkeley.edu: Empathy reduces prejudice and racism: In one study, white participants made to empathize with an African American man demonstrated less racial bias afterward.

    Empathy fights inequality. As Robert Reich and Arlie Hochschild have argued, empathy encourages us to reach out and want to help people who are not in our social group, even those who belong to stigmatized groups, like the poor. Conversely, research suggests that inequality can reduce empathy: People show less empathy when they attain higher socioeconomic status.

    ^ I don’t think there is any shortage of that form of empathy (or perhaps empathy for empathy’s sake) in modern-day America.

    Mark (8cacab)

  46. There are two cases where I think we are morally obliged to have the death penalty available as an option: first, when someone sentenced to life imprisonment kills again (whether an inmate, a guard, or anone after escape); second, when dealing with terrorists who murder, or even threaten murder, to attempt to have their imprisoned compatriots set free.

    Elizabeth Creegan (5d3de3)

  47. “This incident, as described, falls well outside safe handling standards for dangerous offenders like Gomez. This doesn’t pass the smell test.”

    They only have to get lucky once. You have to be right all the time.

    More seriously; keeping prisoners is not easy work. They are working to escape, act up, attack, scheme; constantly, because it’s all they have to do. Very easy to imagine a screw-up because they happen in the corrections industry all the time.

    luagha (1de9ec)

  48. But if it is, I hope prosecutors are seriously evaluating whether to apply it.

    Whether they apply it or not doesn’t mean anything. This is California, where carrying out an execution is damned near impossible.

    Blacque Jacques Shellacque (51809b)

  49. Why is the death penalty for difficult to carry out in California than Texas?

    Michael Ejercito (becea5)

  50. “stabbed in the back of the head Friday by an inmate”

    Liberals do not care very much about prison guards getting hurt or killed. Liberals regard prison guards as the scum of the earth–in sharp contrast to prison inmates whom they regard has hapless victims of society.

    Richard Harris (ae6bd1)

  51. Liberals do not care very much about prison guards getting hurt or killed. Liberals regard prison guards as the scum of the earth–in sharp contrast to prison inmates whom they regard has hapless victims of society.

    So they believe that rapists are victims of society?

    Michael Ejercito (becea5)

  52. ME-
    TX does not have to contend with the 9th-Circus.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  53. To a die-hard Lib, all criminals are victims of society.
    For review, listen to the “Officer Krupke” number in West Side Story (1957-Broadway/1961-film).

    askeptic (efcf22)

  54. Liberal/shmiberal. Your bloodsucking capitalist masters make more money by locking up the heroes of the proletariat who dare to raise their heads to protest the unjust exploitative oppression that perpetuates the plutocratic oligarchy and taxing you to pay for it than they would if they outright killed them while keeping you fooled that they are protecting you but instead keep you frightened with the hell holes administered by their sadistic prison guard lackeys and kept filled by their jackbooted police thugs so that you will continue along docilely being milked and shorn and pulling the money plow of the bourgeois leeches and believing yourselves free just because they allow you to feed off the crumbs that fall off their overstuffed dinner tables that were built and set with the blood and sweat of the workers. Look up, you sheep.

    nk (dbc370)

  55. To the barricades, Tovarish!

    askeptic (efcf22)

  56. Some of you guys are old enough to see for yourselves what’s been going on for the last fifty years. We have not been liberalizing the criminal justice system, we’ve been pouring lots and lots more money into it. There’s a difference. We’ve been criminalizing more and more things, and hiring more cops and prosecutors and paying out money to the prisoner industry for things ranging from super-max with two guards per prisoners all the way down to monthly reports from a social worker and an alcohol monitor. It is all all about money, fed by the fear of crime (and a good example from the other side is the boom in the gun industry). We’re not fighting crime; we’re making the crime pimps and public safety hustlers rich.

    This guy committed his capital crime in 2004. A sensible society would not have let him see 2005. Zangara was fried 34 days after he shot Cermak. But then the criminal justice parasites would not have made several hundred thousand dollars paid out by the taxpayers from him. And people would feel less of a need to go walking around with a Kel-Tec in their waistband.

    nk (dbc370)

  57. In the current environment, at least since 9/11, the astronomical increase in gun sales is not so much due to the fear of crime, which after all is going down FTMP (perhaps to the greater availability of CCW as even crime is a conducted under the principles of cost/benefit), but to the fear of government – of what it can do, and won’t do.
    That guy on his ranchette in Montana has no real fear of criminals, but he’s deathly afraid of the EPA, and people like them for whatever level of government. And he and his breathern have developed a well deserved fear that the government they pay to protect them from all enemies foreign and domestic, won’t.
    The Bundy Ranch, and the Children’s Crusade are examples of both sides of that fear in action.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  58. We’ve been criminalizing more and more thing

    But not in the way of matters necessarily pertaining to police departments (eg, the joke that the city of Chicago has become with its recurring bout of nationally publicized murders and street crime) and the FBI. Instead it involves, as noted by askeptic, things like the reach of the federal bureaucracy, including the IRS (“oh, so now you wonderful tax agents are going to strong arm me into buying something I don’t want?!”) or the EPA.

    Or matters that have nothing to do with a David Gomez or a black guy pulled over by cops at UCLA.

    Mark (8cacab)

  59. You don’t know Jack Sh#t about Chicago, Mark. You’ve made that quite clear on multiple occasions.

    elissa (752602)

  60. There is one simple problem with Chicago:
    The crooks are the only ones with guns, and half of them are the police.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  61. “We’ve been criminalizing more and more things”

    nk – Examples please and whether or not they existed as issues 50 years ago.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  62. daley, all you have to do is look in the Federal Regulatory Code, and the absence of Mens Rea in so many of the new violations. No intent is necessary, only that the violation exists – that is a major change from a century (or even a half-century) ago.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  63. I don’t even ….

    nk (dbc370)

  64. You don’t know Jack Sh#t about Chicago, Mark.

    Elissa, I agree that my sense of your fair city is based on the frequent news reports, often linked at the Drudgereport.com, that highlight just how safe and violent-free your part of the Midwest is. By how the Chicago’s anti-gun laws have been a sensible response to criminality. I’m also impressed by how your mayor is quite a wonderful, remarkable, sensible fellow. He reflects well on the citizenry who happily and easily voted him into office.

    Mark (8cacab)

  65. The crooks are the only ones with guns, and half of them are the police.

    Which means that city will be an ideal new stomping ground for all the “undocumented” streaming in from Mexico, since they’ll have a hard time becoming quite as home sick when one place full of crooked cops is very reminiscent of another place full of crooked cops.

    Mark (8cacab)

  66. You don’t know Jack Sh#t about Chicago. And your comment @64 proves it on multiple ways. But I repeat myself.

    elissa (752602)

  67. But I repeat myself.

    Yea, you do. But with more heat than light.

    Mark (8cacab)

  68. “daley, all you have to do is look in the Federal Regulatory Code, and the absence of Mens Rea in so many of the new violations.”

    askeptic – What new violations are you talking about? The absence of mens rea does not resolve nk’s hand wave assertion that we’ve been criminalizing more and more things.

    What are those things? Help back up nk’s claim with specifics, don’t tell me to read the freaking Federal Register.

    Here’s a pub with good time series data on prison admissions and releases since 1978:

    http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/p12tar9112.pdf

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  69. Oh, I’m sorry Mark, do you actually live here like I (and daley and nk and several others) do? For some reason I was under the impression that you live in California and that you were getting your information and “sense of our fair city” from headlines on the Drudge Report. Derp.

    elissa (752602)

  70. do you actually live here like I (and daley and nk and several others) do?

    Elissa, so you agree that your city’s crime statistics are overblown, that Rahm Emanuel reflects well on your city’s politics and citizenry, that your city doesn’t have a history of cops being on the take, that your city’s anti-gun laws have worked like magic?

    Mark (8cacab)

  71. nk – I know you love making big bold statements about how bad the authoritarian law enforcement authorities are, but in the absence of any specifics, I think your statement that I highlighted in #61 is full of sh#t.

    We had the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 (passed in 1971) which consolidated laws and penalties on illegal drugs covered by various other statutes and acts into one law. We’ve had changes in sentencing, not necessarily criminalizing new things. Crack was a non-event 50 years ago. Heroin was around, illegal but had not hit its peak. Marijuana was already illegal as was cocaine. I don’t know what violent crimes and property crimes were not illegal 50 years ago that are illegal now. That’s what I’m looking to you to supply to back up your claim we are criminalizing more and more things.

    When I look at the data in the pub I linked in #61, what it looks like to me a lot more resources devoted to enforcement and prosecution, but I’m happy to be proved wrong.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  72. “Elissa, so you agree that your city’s crime statistics are overblown”

    Mark – Can you point out where elissa said that? What has been the annual trend in gun violence, Mark?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  73. Mark – Your squishy form of argument follows a typical progressive framing. Where did you learn to be so dishonest and annoying at the same time?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  74. – Can you point out where elissa said that?

    daley, she said I don’t know “jacksh#t” about Chicago, and that was in response to my first mentioning how frequent stories out of the Windy City about all its gun-related violence and murders are making a spectacle of it. So one (ie, “jacksh#t”) presumable refers to the other (ie, all the crime stories).

    Mark (8cacab)

  75. Where did you learn to be so dishonest and annoying at the same time?

    We do live in Obama’s “Goddamn America,” don’t we? We’re learning from the best.

    Mark (8cacab)

  76. daley, I was thinking more about the violations under the various regulatory (administrative) codes that you run into with the EPA, BLM, etc…..not the criminal code.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  77. daley, I was thinking more about the violations under the various regulatory (administrative) codes that you run into with the EPA, BLM, etc…..not the criminal code.

    Yes, but none of those newly-minted “offenses” contribute to street crime, or to the overcrowding at the kind of prison where this stabbing took place. Almost everyone at that prison was convicted of something that was already illegal in 1950.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  78. I post the following in tribute to the Windy City, involving people who presumably do know jacksh#t about their town:

    chicagonow.com, July 10, 2014: Chicago’s bloody Fourth of July holiday weekend has put the city’s record murder rate back in the national headlines. With less than a year before the mayoral elections, Mayor Rahm Emanuel was in full spin control Wednesday trying to change the conversation at Chicago’s Taste of Chicago.

    An embarrassed Mayor Emanuel wanted to talk corn on the cob-–not Chicago’s murder epidemic. But things did not work out as the Mayor planned thanks to one persistent reporter.

    WILLIAM KELLY (REPORTER): Mr. Mayor, can you address the ‘Murder Capital’ moniker. We’ve been called the murder capital as well as the ‘Culinary Capital. ‘Can you please address the ‘Murder Capital’ moniker please?

    EMANUEL PRESS AIDE TO REPORTER: I’m not…

    REPORTER TO MAYOR’S AIDE: Is there anyone from the Mayor’s Office that can address the ‘Murder Capital’ moniker?

    REPORTER: Mr. Mayor, could you please address the murder crisis question that many Chicagoans are asking? Chicago has been called the murder capital, could you please address that question?

    MAYOR EMANUEL: (Unintelligible)

    REPORTER: It’s a very serious crisis that faces many Chicagoans. I think that it deserves a moment of your time.

    …REPORTER: You’ve been in office three years and you haven’t addressed the question yet. Is there anyway you can address the question? Will you answer the question before the election?

    REPORTER: (unintelligible)

    REPORTER TO EMANUEL: If it really comes down to guns, why isn’t there a murder crisis in Skokie or Evergreen Park? Or even Cicero for that matter? Why don’t we have a similar murder crisis in Evanston?

    MAYOR’S AIDE: Put your microphone away. The Mayor’s not taking questions today. You received a public notice that there is no media availability.

    REPORTER: You are assaulting me right now and if you touch me again I will call the police.

    When asked, many in the crowd at the Taste of Chicago seemed more concerned about the murder rate than the Mayor himself. Among them, a little boy whose cousin – a star basketball player – had just been shot and killed the previous night.

    Mark (8cacab)

  79. If he knew Jacksh#t about Chicago Mark wouldn’t be proudly and haughtily quoting (but not linking) William Kelly (reporter). William Kelly is not a friend of conservatives and does more harm than good in Illinois Republican politics. But Mark would not know that. Would he? I am now done with this idiotic conversation with Mark.

    http://www.examiner.com/article/what-do-you-do-with-a-problem-like-william-kelly

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  80. There’s a simple solution to violence in prisons – shoot them!
    If the state can compel you or I to submit to an inspection for blood-alcohol level by the simple precept of having a Driver’s License, conviction of a felony and incarceration in a prison or jail for that felony should include a waiver subjecting said felon, for any crime of violence committed within the confines of that institution, to Summary Execution.

    askeptic (efcf22)

  81. Wow Milhouse, You got’em on ” Almost everyone at that prison was convicted of something that was already illegal in 1950.

    And that is the truth!

    Hoagie (4dfb34)

  82. What is society supposed to do with someone like that

    Take notice of who he is and what he is like, watch him much more carefully, and try not to spring any surprises on him, AND WHEN HE OBJECTS TO SOMETHING, listen, and if it is not something proper to agree to, tell him why, and get him either to accept it or oppose it in advance, in which case you can make plans, or deprive him of some privilege if he won’t agree to it.
    .

    Sammy Finkelman (069ee3)

  83. Milhouse (b95258) — 7/13/2014 @ 12:33 pm

    Almost everyone at that prison was convicted of something that was already illegal in 1950.

    The problem is that there are a lot more people like that than there once used to be, even though theer are fewer than there were in 1988.

    Sammy Finkelman (069ee3)

  84. daleyrocks, you’re playing imdw. Was firing a warning shot at two suspected home invaders on private property punishable with a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years, fifty years ago? Driving with a BAC of .08, when did that a) become a crime and b) have a mandatory incarceration for a second offense? For that matter, when did we get mandatory minimums for offenses other than murder, rape and third felony*? Look up the rest yourself. Your prison stats are good — as far as they go. Crime is in fact down — people have been learning to count on themselves and not the police to avoid becoming victims. Anti-poverty programs have reduced crimes that people committed just to survive to some degree — from not needing to steal to eat to being able to sell your foodstamps for heroin instead of committing a burglary to get it. A large part of recidivism has been fixed by tripling the sentences, they don’t get out to commit crimes like they used to. And yes, we do have some return on our dollars with “more cops, less crime” but I put that way down on the list. And, and, and, prisons alone do not a prison make. People in “diversion programs”, from home detention to halfway houses to ankle bracelets, are prisoners and making money for the industry.

    *If you want to define “crime” by “fine of $500.00″, you can start looking at all the piddly little crap like car insurance, texting in your car and singing in the subway without a license. If you want to piss off both feminists and anti-gunners, you can look at domestic violence orders and the Lautenberg Amendment.

    nk (dbc370)

  85. “daleyrocks, you’re playing imdw.”

    nk – Nope, just checking your unsubstantiated statements slurring law enforcement. Like yesterdays when you said traffic enforcement was all about revenue. Not in my town according to the revenue stats and incident reporting. Never heard another peep out of you.

    Now you offer up a gun control law as an example of why we are incarcerating more people? Gee, that may affect some states. How many do you think? How many people do you think are sentenced under those laws?

    Mandatory minimum sentences? The underlying crimes were already illegal. Was anything new being criminalized? No, so it’s a BS point.

    BAC of .08? Was drunk driving legal 50 years ago? Really?

    I think your point fails and you just hate police like a lot of other commenters on the blog.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  86. And Pauline Kael did not know anybody who voted for Nixon. Just because something is outside your experience it does not mean that it doesn’t exist. I cannot refute your perception of omniscience in comments on a blog post. There isn’t enough space or time. It might also be damaging to your psyche and I don’t want to be responsible for that. Besides, arguing over facts — “Ain’t so” “Is so” — is stupid.

    Same thing about your comment in the black judge thread. If you don’t live in Northfield you live near it but you don’t know that it’s a notorious speed trap that’s been sued by the Illinois Attorney General (and almost by me too*) for it. You don’t know that the State of Illinois has been fighting for more than twenty years to put an end to speed traps first by passing a law preempting all local traffic ordinances and just a week passing a law abolishing traffic ticket quotas. I’ve also been dealing with pretext traffic stops for the purpose of detaining the driver and searching the car since 1984. I have generated case law in in Illinois on it. But that’s also my experience, not yours.

    I don’t hate cops, BTW. I don’t think their badges are halos, that’s all. I do hate the prisoner industry. I think making money off prisoners is despicable and a society which does that deserves everything it gets.

    *Like the black judge, the cops stopped the wrong person. My client was a regional VP for a big Pharma company who could afford to hire me, not a Mexican busboy who would just mail in the fine because he didn’t want any trouble or to miss work. I filed my appearance and served a subpoena for the cop’s logs on that day to the police department and the city attorney. The city attorney dropped the case.

    nk (dbc370)

  87. just a week *ago* or maybe two

    nk (dbc370)

  88. BAC of .08? Was drunk driving legal 50 years ago? Really?

    50 years ago, drunk driving was illegal, but a BAC of 0.08 was legal.

    Chuck Bartowski (11fb31)

  89. The prison where this stabbing happened was not filled with people who’d frightened off burglars, or had been driving only semi-drunk.

    Milhouse (b95258)

  90. Length of sentence is the primary factor in evaluating escape risk. In Illinois, 25 years is a maximum security prison, C-grade (high risk) cellblock. The guy in the post would have been in segregation/dangerous prisoner; he had killed his previous cellmate.

    nk (dbc370)

  91. Even minimum security prisons have segregation and high security wings, BTW, for when prisoners who are not initially deemed high risk act up. Or for overflow from other prisons.

    nk (dbc370)

  92. William Kelly is not a friend of conservatives and does more harm than good in Illinois Republican politics.

    Elissa, his politics don’t have a thing to do with whether his interview of your city’s fine, wonderful mayor was good or not. His ideology has nothing to do with whether his assumptions or statistics about “Murder Capital” are correct or not.

    Mark (8cacab)

  93. He is not a “reporter” and that was not an “interview” But have a nice day, Mark.

    elissa (1d9a3d)

  94. If Gomez had raped your child, killed your brother/son/nephew, stabbed your loved one would you be so compassionate? Inmates have always found a way to make weapons. They hide them in their rectum, in their throat/clothes/legal documents/books/wherever they can find. Razor blades from their razors are removed. As for mental illness….check it out. How much manipulation do you think they are capable of?
    come up for air you guys. These killers don’t think the way “normal” people think.

    Virginia Welzenbach (516490)


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