If this young, former U.S. Marine were to have shot and killed one of his
comrade in arms in Afghanistan while have been drinking, acting in an immature,
irresponsible, negligent manner with a firearm, would the military just slap his
hands and tell him not to do that anymore?He was irresponsible,
immature in his thinking, negligent, and reckless. There's a price to pay
beyond just the suffering that comes from taking anyone's life, family,
friend or innocent associate.
Mercy? Yes. Leniency? Sure. Accountability? Without a doubt. But looking totally
the other way because it was accidental? No! Alcohol and negligence ignored?
Absolutely not. Irresponsibility and negligence given a free ride
when something so tragic occurs will teach future irresponsible and negligent
individuals to define mercy, leniency and accountability as meaningless. This 27-year-old irresponsible and fatally negligent former U.S. Marine
to be a man and pay the price.He's not a murderer, but he took
a life of even a loved one and justice requires an appropriate penalty for the
good of civilized society.
As a society, many of us have become obsessed with punishment. Accident,
intentional, it makes no difference -- someone has got to pay.Might
our efforts and resources be better used in helping to teach and support people
in making good decisions, in overcoming negative influences, in gaining more
productive skills? Granted, there are times when, for the safety of society
some individuals need to be separated out. But a person hits a piece of black
ice, spins out of control and hits another car - injuring or killing a
person/persons in that car, we send them off to jail. Why? We all do dumb
things, some with tragic results -- but let's focus our efforts on
improving the future and not always punishing the past.
The article is clearly slanted towards the mother's plea and therefore most
commentors side with the mother. But something needs to teach the living son
that alcohol and many things don't mix. If he gets off with no
punishment, I don't know that he will learn that lesson and perhaps in the
future drive off drunk and kill some innocent victim. Every mother wants
mercy for their children but this is about a civilized society trying to manage
Isn't this involuntary manslaughter? It carries a penalty. It is also a
crime. If we are soft on careless handling of deadly weopens when drunk, then we
are opening the door for the next incident to go unpunished. This is the trouble
with America right now, soft on items such as this and worse. If you
commit the crime then do the time. Justice is then served. Mothers will always
want to love and defend an offender, it is only natural.
Calling this incident an "accident" is wrong. This man pointed a loaded
gun at his brother's head and pulled the trigger. He violated all 4 of the
basic gun safety rules. He also broke what shouldn't need to be a rule:
Don't Play with Guns when You're Drunk. People who commit crimes are
often sorry about what they did. That doesn't mean that they shouldn't
be held accountable by the criminal justice system. If he had been playing with
a gun while drunk and had shot and killed a stranger, instead of his brother,
should he have not been tried and imprisoned? Of course he should have; that the
victim that he killed is his brother makes little difference.
ManInTheMiddleSANDY, UTWhat would you say is the purpose of
jail/prison?lots of people would like to have their loved one at home with
them who have committed crimes and are locked up.How can we lock up people
in prison for selling/possessing pot; but when a man shoots his brother in the
head there is no punishment.isn't part of the reason we lock people
up so that they can pay back society for what they have done?What happens
next time someone is drunk and shoots someone: should they also not go to
prison?How many people are in prison after they have shot someone while
drunk? my guess is over 50% of murders are commited by a drunk person.Should we just say if someone is drunk they are not liable for what they do?
I remember the case in Summitt County. However, as I recall, the father was
only charged. He had not been to trial, but was so devastated that he killed
himself. The County Attorny felt that he had no choice but to file the case and
charge him, but it was all a terrible tragedy. Of course, the father
didn't intend for it to happen. But, it showed incredibly stupid judgment
that ended in the loss of a child.The same thing is true in this
case. It was some really stupid judgement on the part of the defendant. But, I
agree, the family has suffered enough. After all, it was really just a tragic
accident. Let him go and let this family try to put their lives back together.
What would be so bad with a year in Jail? Its not that long and it does serve
notice that if you have a gun, you are responsible to always treat it as if
loaded. Every gun owner should know that. The biggest punishment is the loss of
his brother. I would think a year in Jail would even ease the pain of that.
I agree with those who say he has suffered enough. I remember a case 8-10 year
ago in Summit County where a father left his small son in a truck while he went
to scout hunting sites. He didn't mean to be gone long. But when he
returned he couldn't find the boy. The boy had left the truck and got lost.
The wrong thing to do? Yes, but after being prosecuted and receiving a jail
sentence, the father killed himself at the site where his boy's body was
found. A terrible tragedy. Sometimes government prosecutors - and judges - just
makes things worse.
I am not a proponent of alcohol and substance abuse. However, impairment is
defined for driving and other activities and that is the law.This is
hard on the family and mother, especially. A former military person was trained
and qualified to have a weapon in a supervised mode. They are not given a
weapon when they are drinking in a festive mode. Everyone in his presence that
day should have had gun training and know that a weapon with a clip installed is
a potential threat to life and limb. Not being on the jury and
given the rules by the judge, it does seem to be an appeals process in the
Please stop wasting my tax dollars on this case. What a waste. Let him go, let
them try to move on. Putting him in jail serves zero public purpose.
Not sure there is a right answer. It is obvious that there is negligence and
some extreme lack of judgment here. I do not understand the drinking part as it
has affected and ruined so many lives. (My family is not excluded) But the
torment of what has happened will be thousands of times more punishing than any
jail sentence. (Assuming he is truly sorry, which from our view he is). So I
tend to agree let him be on probation and let him work to pay taxes and not let
us support him with our taxes. I think he has been drug through enough mud.
Mom and Dad agree and I think they would be a good gauge. Whether
you all want to admit it or not we all have done things where we looked back and
said now that was not very smart. Most of the time we are lucky and nothing
major happens. But in this case it was a bit more serious and negligent and
things went wrong. God Speed to the family. They are the ones
suffering the most. So let’s move on.
My2Cents, because his alcohol levels were .06 four hours after the incident.
The body processes somewhere between .06 & .08 alcohol per hour, roughly the
equivalent of one beer or mixed drink. If he wasn't tested until four
hours after the fact and was at that point .06, it is logical and certainly easy
to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that at the time of the shooting he was well
above .08 (at least .2, and that's a low-ball number). I do agree
with you though; the man is being punished enough just by what happened, the
courts should have stayed out of it; and certainly the public gains nothing from
his trial and possible incarceration. A waste of tax-payers dollars.
It would be good if he could avoid jail and go talking to people about gun
safety. If someone that's not dangerous is willing to do something more
meaningful than jail, we should let them.
How did they determine neglegence citing alcohol levels as justification? The
alcohols levels were legal and non impairing so this man was convicted falsely
of any criminal actions. This is why no one should eaver deal with
copping pleas under threats and intidation and emotional stress. This man is no
more guilty of a crime, it was all accidental with no impairments. We never see
police offeers arrested and sent to jail everytime their guns go off intentional
or accidental. The man has had enough punishment and suffering to
last a life time without court actions insulting the man and justice with a
wrongful conviction. Its time to put the brakes on these kinds of non trial
convictions being negotiated under threats and intimidation. The case should
have never gone to trail or courts. Over zealous attorneys and judges for cites
need to be put on notice of contempt of people rights and start shutting down
illegal non trail convictions.