Topic: Professions & Institutions

The Nice Magistrate
(10/12/2009)

And they say that the justice system has no heart!

Iowa Magistrate Judge Benny Waggoner was told that Randy Barker, who was serving a 10-day jail sentence for interference with official acts and violation of a protective order, had been planning for months travel to Kansas City and see the Royals play the Red Sox. "Randy's always been a Red Sox fan," Norman Barker told TV station KCCI. "The Red Sox got a knuckle ball pitcher. I have an 11-year-old grandson that plays baseball, pitches perfect knuckle ball and that's why we're going." It was a big family event; Randy and his family hadn’t been to game in 25 years.

A judge actually interrupts a prison sentence so the guy doesn’t have to miss a family outing! Isn’t that great?

Of COURSE is isn’t “great.” It’s wrong and irresponsible, not to mention unfair. If someone is sent to jail, that means they are supposed to endure punishment. Prisoners miss the births of their children, see their relationships fall into ruin, miss out on every simple joy from sniffing a rose to jogging in the rain...and this guy gets a special temporary release so he can go to a RED SOX GAME??

The judge has taken all integrity out of the justice system and made it a joke. Lance Morris, whose family was the one Barker harassed sufficiently to get sent to jail, is understandably perplexed. Barker called Morris’s mother more than 60 times in one night, he told reporters. "His therapist has called me to say she has a duty to warn me that he told her he wanted to get a gun and shoot me,” said Morris. “But he wants to go to a ballgame so they let him out."

One can only imagine what excuse the next prisoner will offer Waggoner to persuade him to grant a vacation from jail. A high school reunion, perhaps. A Super Bowl party.

All those who have no respect for the justice system are just nodding their heads. “See?” they are thinking. “Capricious, random, illogical---just like we told you!”

But so nice!

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