Indiana, PA - Indiana County

ROB STOERKEL: In-justice system has got to go

on December 11, 2012 11:00 AM

During civics classes, I was taught that the criminal justice system (which includes judges and district attorneys) represented the people, not an individual or a "family."

After all, it is the people versus the criminal, not John Doe's father versus murderer John Smith. That latter case is to be determined by a small claims court or a civil lawsuit.

With the horrendous, violent murders and other crimes (animal cruelty, arson, etc.) perpetrated by Lewis Beatty against his wife and children, the people were to be represented by the Indiana County district attorney and the presiding judge, who had an opportunity to negate the DA's ridiculous "plea" bargain. And it was a bargain. But not for the people.

The evidence was overwhelming, along with numerous confessions of the crimes by Mr. Beatty. Why was there a plea bargain in the first place? Why were any charges pleaded away? And why was it accepted by the judge?

So yet again, the justice system has failed the people.

Actually, it was Mr. Dougherty and Mr. Bianco who failed us, the people. As they did Christine. And 11-year-old Amanda. And 6-year-old Sara.

Shame on both of you.

Rob Stoerkel


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