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Recidivism & Gun Crime Article from Philadelphia Paper

Discussion in 'Legal' started by MartinBrody, Oct 10, 2006.

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  1. MartinBrody

    MartinBrody Member

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    Aside from the whole "gun crime" terminology, I think this is a well thought out piece.

    http://www.philly.com/mld/philly/15720669.htm

     
  2. Helmetcase

    Helmetcase Member

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    Interesting article.

    What I take away from it is that if we quit prosecuting so many petty crimes (attn DEA, this means you) and actually stuck violent crooks in jail for appreciable periods of time instead of flooding jails and courtrooms with petty distribution and possession convictions, we'd probably have a lot less reason to even care who has a gun in the first place.

    Sounds like liberty to me.
     
  3. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    Well, I guess that proves government needs to crack down on law-abiding American citizens who exercise our Second Amendment civil rights.
     
  4. FTF

    FTF member

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    This sums up my views.

    If you commit a violent felony and use a firearm in the comission of... you go to jail and you STAY there. I don't care if we have to build more jails and fire judge after judge who throw probation for violent crime around like candy. I'm willing to pay extra taxes for that! Blaming 'everyone' doesn't work... lay the blame on the criminals and keep their punkasses in jail. The system is broken. How can you even have "career criminal laws"??? *** are they doing outside of jail if they are "career criminals" anyways?:cuss: :banghead: :fire:
     
  5. ConstitutionCowboy

    ConstitutionCowboy member

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    There Is An Answer To This

    I didn't read the whole article, but I believe the gist of it is in the first third. I believe the article puts fourth the premise that the police are too busy with the small timers that keep getting released or are never convicted in the first place, to ever get a handle on the rampant crime. Well, the best approach to this is the way you approach a myriad of bills - large and small - that are over due, or simply stifling.

    You pay off all the little ones first, then the number of bills you face may be down to only two or three. The two or three remaining will be the largest of course, but now you have more resources to apply to these two or three large bills, and you are no longer hassled with the little ones. That is how you get a handle on crime as well.

    Round up these small timers, convict them, and keep them in jail! That will free up valuable policing and prosecution resources to go after the not so small criminal element. The infringement onto the big boys' "territory" by these small timers isn't simply tolerated, it is welcomed!

    Do this, and before you know it, you might be able to walk down the street in any color hat you want!

    OK. I've finished reading the article. They are calling for higher bail and more "gun control" laws(RKBA infringements), and they continue to place a lot of the blame for the lack of convictions upon witnesses that won't testify.

    Well, seems if these guys were caught to begin with, there must be some evidence - and maybe a police officer witness - that should be enough to get a conviction! As for the bail, screw the bail! Just hold them! If they were dangerous enough to be taken off the streets(arrested) in the first place, they are dangerous enough to be kept off the streets! That will also make for fewer skippers, and most trials will also be held on time!

    All the "gun control" laws(RKBA infringements) in the world won't do a damn thing to alleviate the problem, either. At the best, it will only crowd the system with people being arrested and charged for something that shouldn't be a crime to begin with, and all the criminals will still be out on the streets with their guns!

    Yup. Use this "economics" approach, and it will work. We have prisons for a reason. It isn't to punish or rehabilitate ne'er-do-wells. It is to isolate them so that the rest of us might live in peace, and not have our rights infringed in an attempt - a failed attempt - to get a handle on crime.

    Woody

    "The Right of the People to move about freely in a secure manner shall not be infringed. Any manner of self defense shall not be restricted, regardless of the mode of travel or where you stop along the way, as it is the right so enumerated at both the beginning and end of any journey." B.E.Wood
     
  6. Lonestar

    Lonestar Member

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    Ummm Philly needs to enforce the 5 year federal rule on this guy now that he is an adult. Previously convicted felons are supposed to do 5 years if they are even in possession of a firearm. The DA in Philly is a waste. If they stopped wasting taxpayers money with radio ads on rap stations telling potential perp about the law and actually ENFORCE the law on these scumbags.

    Follow these bad eggs around, pick them up for jaywalking, ohh your packing an illegal firearm and your a convict felon..enforce the law and bye bye..

    Meanwhile someone convicted of some white collor felony will do 5 years in the pokey for possession of a firearm, but these hoodlums still walk the streets.
     
  7. geekWithA.45

    geekWithA.45 Moderator Emeritus

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    Aside from the obsession with "gun crime", the article's not too bad.

    A few things pricked up my ears:

    Statement B, 80% of murders are committed with guns, does not _actually_ support, or have anything to do with statement A, the assertion that people swap assault with a deadly weapon for simple assault & battery.


    This one too:

    There is a phenomena such that since the authorities are majorly inneffective at prosecuting actual bad guys for the serious crimes they actually commit, they try to first criminalize, and then felonize simple things so that they _can_ get them on _something_, and therefore get them off the street.

    In the case of mere gun posession, this has the effect of splashing all over the honest guy, at first placing him at risk, and then eventually marginalizing him. It also creates an environment of fear and uncertainty in a context of selective enforcement and prosecution.

    This dynamic has become a monster for us, and is perhaps the driving force behind the observed phenomena of "felony creep".

    Finally, although I hate to blame the victim, I'd like to point out that a lot of these streets are hellish, because the residents have effectively surrendered them.

    To heck with marching on city hall demanding that the police take back your streets for you.

    They're doing their bit.

    You do yours.

    Show up in court and testify.
     
  8. MartinBrody

    MartinBrody Member

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    I think this sums up the problem...

    Why can't the criminal justice system more successfully prosecute a person who is clearly a problem? The article suggests that lack of evidence (witness testimony) is the reason. Any suggestions? I don't think legislation will solve it, this sounds like a DA & police effectiveness issue.
     
  9. geekWithA.45

    geekWithA.45 Moderator Emeritus

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    I think witness testimony is actually a huge issue for these folks.

    The threat of retaliation is real and imminent, either directly by the perp, or his friend/brother/fellow gangbanger who lives two doors down.

    A lot of people run the calculus, figure it ain't worth it to send him to jail for the very few years he'll actually serve, and basically play "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil", rather than ask for more trouble than one isolated person can handle.

    This represents a vicious cycle that results in a fundamental breakdown of the social order, neither society nor the individual can make good on their mutual contract.

    Unfortunately, the only answers I have to this are personal courage, backed up by community cohesion, which is something you have to build one household and street at a time.

    One unarmed guy can't do much in terms of protecting himself. An armed guy can do more, but he has to sleep sometime, and the stress of constantly looking over your shoulder can wear you down. An armed guy, walking down the street, on good terms with his neighbors, who he knows to be equally well armed AND are also watching his back for their mutual benefit's a different story. Such a man might be more willing to testify, for himself, and his neighborhood if he knew his neighbors understood the risks he took in so doing, and they shared it with him.

    But building that...well, that's the rub. Healing a wounded, fractured community, if "community" could even be said to exist is a daunting task.

    Sadly, some things might just be too broken to fix, especially when communities look to anyone other than themselves for deliverance.
     
  10. PythonFan

    PythonFan Member

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    His name is Khalil, ship him to Gitmo under the partriot act.:neener:
     
  11. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    Multiple generations of so-called "welfare" have taught people to do nothing for themselves, but wait for government to solve their problems.

    Government doesn't solve problems.
     
  12. BobTheTomato

    BobTheTomato Member

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    I can't wait to get my "Stop Snitchin" tee shirt......... :barf: :barf:

    Like geekwitha45 said retaliation is a real fear in these cases. I think the key would be that when you do get a conviction especially on a repeat offender you need to lock them up and throw the key away. If the statistic is true about 2/3 of crime being caused by the same people this is a case of changing the system so that crime dosent pay.
     
  13. hammer4nc

    hammer4nc Member

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    Government blames their inability to obtain criminal convictions on lack of witnesses. They attribute this solely to witness intimidation by the perps. As usual, they completely ignore the monumental PR problem they've created by criminalizing a wide range of victimless crimes. Fear of reprisals from accused suspects does not cause citizens to wear "no snitch" tee-shirts, and rap videos pushing the "no snitch" ethic. Lack of respect for the justice system does.
    Incaraceration rates are at record highs, can't build prisons fast enough, and they're overcrowded. As if we're not jailing like never before! This guy completely ignores this fact (as usual)!

    Now we know why .gov, abetted by the ATF, relies so heavily on "felon in possession" federal charges. How many citizen witnesses do you need to make a FIP charge stick? Zero. How much local tax money do you need to build federal prisons? Zero (federal funds are manna from heaven; immune to deficit limits).

    This is a classic case of an unstable system, unsustainable, in essence spiraling in flames toward the ground.
     
  14. coat4gun

    coat4gun Member

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    Personally, I see the unconstitutional "war on drugs" as one of the main causes of this problem. It causes prison overcrowding... it causes resentment of Government... it causes disrespect for police... it cost's Billions and it isn't working... and it never will work.

    "Nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced."
    - Albert Einstein, "Ideas and Opinions", 1954
     
  15. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    That's what's most broken about the system. Someone does a drive-by and misses, it's a relatively minor charge. They have to KILL someone before they're put away.
     
  16. michaelbane

    michaelbane Member

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    Did anyone notice something in that article?

    I know it's off topic, but I feel compelled to point something out in the article.

    How do you get to be a cop and a state representative with a criminal record? I don't care if it's as a juvie. A criminal record is a criminal record, IMO.
     
  17. svtruth

    svtruth Member

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    Why arrest

    these guys for things you can't get convictions on? It sounds close to harrassment. Mr. Slight sounds like a BG, but if so arrest him for something that you can make stick.
    Clogged courts are advanced as a reason for not getting convictions, but all those acquitals must be clogging the courts.
     
  18. Lonestar

    Lonestar Member

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    I know it's off topic, but I feel compelled to point something out in the article.


    Quote:
    Mike, I didn't notice that....funny thing is my friend who graduated with a Criminal Justice degree after serving in the first Persian Gulf war was turned down by the Philly Police department because he admitted he tried smoking pot ONCE! We told him not to mention it on the background check, but the guy is too honest.
     
  19. Thefabulousfink

    Thefabulousfink Member

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    And Thats the LAST thing we need, an honest cop who admits to his mistakes.:rolleyes:

    And how exactly does the mayor of Philly expect a gun ban to reduce crime when people caught with "illegal guns" get put back on the street?:banghead:
     
  20. Keith Wheeler

    Keith Wheeler Member

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    Ah, so someone makes one mistake and must pay for it the rest of their life?

    The problem with this attitude is that it breeds an attitude where people hide their mistakes, and then the slightest something that happened 20 years ago becomes a reason for a witch-hunt. We see this all the time with our political leaders. If folks would be "we're all human, we all mistakes. did you learn from your mistake?" I think there'd be less "political scandal". I mean come on, this guy wanted to become a cop, he wanted to make things right. He took a bullet for being a cop, but you want him to be a second class citizen because he made a mistake as a teenager?

    Geeze nobody here has ever every committed a crime. Nobody here has ever made a stupid choice when a teen.

    If someone makes a mistake and then changes what's wrong with that?
     
  21. Henry Bowman

    Henry Bowman Senior Member

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    Well put.
     
  22. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    Minor point: 80% of Philadelphia's murders involve firearms. Nationwide, it's about one-third.

    Art
     
  23. michaelbane

    michaelbane Member

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    For some things, people should pay for the rest of their life. That's why criminal records exist. The fact I believe that in no way trivializes the sacrifice he made in the line of duty or his status as a human being.
     
  24. garymc

    garymc Member

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    Broken system

    Years ago I worked with cops a lot. It always aggravated me when I ran into a cop who would make arrests as he's paid to do and then say its the prosecutor's problem if there's no case. "I don't work for the prosecuting attorney's office." Then you have cops trying to make cases and take them to a prosecutor who boasts a 95% conviction rate. You get a rate like that by rejecting any case with any conceivable loophole. I remember "what if" being the description of a given prosecutor. You take a case in and its "what if the defense says this or that?" That's probably what turns the cops trying to do a good job into the "I don't work for the PA types." I saw a majority of crimes sliding over this kind of stuff. Then you have the volume of cases that are accepted that vastly outnumber what could ever be tried, so you get plea bargains for reduced charges and sentences. And for those of you whining about minor drug cases filling up the prison, that's not what I observed over 30 years. Anybody stupid enough to get past the above problems and get to actually plead their first case for a minor drug violation gets probation, treatment mandated, and a suspended execution of sentence - complete probation without problems and you have no conviction record. Actually, its a good sifter. Many of those people either go straight or at least get smart enough not to get caught again. For the ones who don't learn, the second time is real probation with no suspension and a record. For the ones who still can't straighten out, the third time often gets jail. This is what I've seen for penny anty stuff like minor drug violations, burglary (no weapons involved), simple theivery, bad checks, etc. Its a wonder there are any people in prison from this perspective, but that's the other thing I've seen for the 30 years, inadequate prison space. Judges afraid to send a 3 time convicted burglar up for fear of pushing a rapist out the other end of the prison. In the 70's and early 80's most state prison systems were under court order to reduce the overcrowding.
     
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