Friday, May 14, 2010

Cooling my heels

I started this post yesterday and had to interrupt my flow to attend to some pressing business.  I found myself yesterday morning stuffed in a windowless conference room in the county courthouse waiting to testify at a homicide trial.  Here in our little corner of suburbia we luckily don't have that much violent crime.  Due to an error in jury instructions at the original trial the first guilty verdict was overturned and we had to go through the entire trial again.

Without getting in to the sordid details of the crime let me just say that because of the bad choices of one young teenage male, another was killed.  Sad really.  Two lives with nothing but potential and both ended poorly.  One dead and the other consigned to about twenty seven square feet of cage for the next sixty or so years.  While I was waiting in the conference room I was joined by a Mom and her two teenage children.  They too were there for a retrial.  The difference was that these two wonderful kids had been sexually assaulted when they were in what we in the trade call "the tender years". 

You can almost understand the stupidity of youth when you consider the circumstances of the homicide.  I am not trying to excuse anyone's behavior, but face it.  None of us were Rhodes scholars at eighteen and absent some capable parenting anyone of us could have conceivably wound up in the same situation.  But to rob the innocence of children who can't fight back.  There must be a special Bunsen Burner in a corner of hell for those people.

No comments: