Probation for a Rapist?

“I got 12 months for a falsified police report and he got probation for raping me and the others,” Ashley said on Friday. “It’s just ridiculous.”

Prosecutors and the judge agreed to a sentence of 10 years probation in exchange for Tony Simmons’, a counselor at Juvenile Justice Department, plea to rape against Ashley and other sexual counts for sexual conduct between 2005 and 2008. This plea offer agreement was later withdrawn by Judge Mullen, of New York County court, because Simmons had not shown any remorse for his actions. He made numerous comments that his victims inticed him or consented to his actions.
While Simmons was supposed to be helping these young female teens, he was instead taking advantage of their fragile states. He also entered into an agreement on behalf of Ashley which involved a 12 month sentence for a falsified police report while Simmons pled guilty to rape and was only given a probation sentence. This seems highly unbalanced justice that a juvenile offender would be so harshly punished for such a minor offense. This makes on wonder, whether this type of disproportionate justice frequently occurs in the juvenile justice system?
Finally on February 1st, 2011, Simmons was sentenced to a 4 year prison sentence for sexually abusing two girls.
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Recorded Telephone Conversations Lead to More Domestic Violence Convictions to the New York Times, individuals who are incarcerated in New York for domestic abuse (or incarcerated for being suspected of domestic abuse) are increasingly having their phone conversations – the ones that they have while incarcerated – taped and used against them in court.  Often, the entire domestic violence case rests on the taped phone calls from jail.

Is this fair or unfair?  Richard Brown, the Queens district attorney, says that there is no issue of fairness because the inmates were informed that their phone conversations were being taped, and they still said things to incriminate themselves.  There are even signs posted in city jails informing inmates that their calls are being taped.  But, for one reason or another, abusers cannot help but to talk about their behavior.  Not surprisingly, abusers, even continue to intimidate their victims behind bars.… <Read More>

The Unstoppable (?) SheenMachine

Charlie Sheen.  Just say his name and people start snickering and shaking their heads.  It’s no doubt that his very-publicspiral downward has had most people comment at some point or another.  How can you not discuss it?  There was the porn star who locked herself in the bathroom when Mr. Sheen tore up a hotel room, there was his quick (and I do mean quick) stint in rehab, his recent firing from his hit show “Two and a Half Men,” and now, a temporary protective order has been issued for Mr. Sheen to stay away from his ex-wife Brooke Mueller and the parties’ twin sons, Max and Bob.… <Read More>

Crouching Tiger Mother, Hidden Justice?

Is Amy “Tiger Mother” Chua the answer to our overpopulated juvenile justice system?

In a recent hotly discussed article for The Wall Street Journal, Ms. Chua touts the ability of Asian mothers to raise “stereotypically successful” children. She believes mothers who demand excellence from their children in all aspects of their lives are more likely to get it than those who simply request it. Ms. Chua has raised two daughters using this philosophy–daughters who were never allowed to attend a sleepover, have a play-date, watch TV, play anything but the piano or violin, or get any grade lower than an A in any class (except, of course, gym and drama).

Needless to say, Ms. Chua’s daughters have never been charged with a crime. But Ms. Chua’s philosophy raises the question: what would our juvenile justice system look like if more parents were Tiger Moms/Dads?

When we hear about the latest juvenile crime story, the thought that almost always comes to mind is: “Where are the parents?” Well…what if the parents were always involved in every single aspect of their child’s life, like Ms. Chua was? Former Manhattan Youth Part Judge Michael Corriero has said in class that children are so easily influenced by the actions of their peers because they are usually judged by the company they keep. If the parents were the child’s friends, however, or if the parents essentially forbid their child from having too much contact with their friends (like Ms. Chua did to hers), then this fear of letting children mix with the wrong crowd would be alleviated, wouldn’t it?… <Read More>

Domestic Abuse Plagues Women from Afghanistan February 27, 2011, the New York Times published an article “Abuse Often Follows Afghans to America,” about how women from Afghanistan, who are abused in their own country, still suffer extreme domestic abuse when they come to the United States.  Women immigrating to the United States from Afghanistan are often joining their husbands who already have come to the United States.  These women are “thrilled about the prospect of a new American life,” but often that dream is shattered when they arrive in the United States.  How, and why, is this so?

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