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01-21-08, 02:23 AM #1
A countybear rant: Cedric McCants
Cedric McCants: An Example of the Failure of our Criminal Justice System
Cedric McCants, 52, of Hempstead, New York is deemed newsworthy because while on parole, he was charged with burglarizing a New York DMV office, and someone brought the media’s attention to his 93-page criminal history: 93 pages, containing 99 separate arrests, 78 convictions consisting of 67 misdemeanors and 8 felonies. This netted him 15 separate incarcerations, with the longest of them a term of 4 years. Quite simply, Cedric is a professional thief.
What enables such a human to remain freely roaming about our society, victimizing literally thousands of people? The criminal (in) justice system does, of course. McCants is a file folder, a number on a paper, and a "frequent flyer" with plenty of miles racked up in the courtroom and in the probation and parole offices of New York State. To the state’s attorneys, the judges, and the others who populate the upper-echelon of the system that McCants seems to work around so well, he is a face often seen, but never really noticed. He represents literally thousands of man-hours of investigative work for the police, and tens of thousands of dollars collectively lost by his victims’ insurance companies. But what is saddest, is that he represents terror and feelings of intimate violation to his victims. Most of all, Cedric McCants proudly represents the utter, miserable failure of the criminal justice system to recognize him as a pure predator and protect innocent people from him. He represents the rampant abuse of a nation founded on individual rights and liberties, because he is deserving of none, yet has been granted them wholesale, repeatedly, as a permanent entitlement without any duty to conduct himself accordingly, whatsoever.
He is not alone, and far from it. Daily, police like myself encounter 21 year olds with more arrests on record than they have years of age. Many of them aren’t confined to a majority misdemeanor record, but have histories of flagrant and brutally violent crimes involving injury and even death of the victim(s). I have often thought -- while viewing such a rap sheet -- how angry the majority of the law-abiding public would be to see what has been allowed to habitually feed upon them thanks to the inefficiency of a system purely geared on what literally has been done by an offender, rather than weighing the often patent and obvious risk that he (or she) poses to society. McCants is not an exception to the rule, HE IS THE RULE. The system is purely reactive, and never proactive. Rather than the focus of our system being the safety of society, it is hopelessly lost in the throes of permissiveness and denial. Probation and Parole is not a supervision of offenders, it is a simply registry of them.
The one hundred and seventy-two police deaths in the line of duty occurring in 2007 are a wake up call, America. The police are your first line of defense against the predator, and the copious amount of blood that they are spilling signals that other elements of the system, which is supposed to represent and protect you, is failing. The vast and overwhelming majority of offenders who killed police in 2006 (41 out of 55, according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports) were repeatedly convicted offenders, and eleven of which had even previously assaulted police. These individuals were allowed to return to the streets unfettered. They were literally allowed back into the very target-rich environment that they prowled, and were supported by a failed system in murdering those who stood against them and stood in defense of the society that they plague and besiege.
While we ponder the environment, fret the questions of abortion and war overseas, let us never forget that we are losing a terrible battle at home. Guantanamo might be a political fiasco to some, but at least those within it are not killing innocents, so in that, at least it succeeds where domestic justice doesn't. Crime statistics are just a bunch of jumbled numbers to us at face value, but each mark in the victim column represents a life troubled, injured, shattered, or lost, and an offender who will most likely be allowed the ability to further menace if truth were to be known. While we laugh and marvel at the antics of reality television, let us never forget that there is a reality here that is terrible and looming: The reality that is crime in America and the abject failure of our government in how it is being dealt with.
"The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."
- Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America
Tell me not, Sweet, I am unkind,
That from the nunnery
Of thy chaste breast and quiet mind
To war and arms I fly. - Lovelace
The opinions expressed by this poster are wholly his own, and should never be construed to even remotely be in representation of his employer, its agencies or assigns. In fact, they probably fail to be in alignment with the opinions of any rational human being.
01-21-08, 04:13 AM #2
A worthy rant countybear. In a country like ours to see the revolving door that is our justice system is a sad state of affairs. Our jails overflow with ricidivists and the justice system keeps churning them back to the streets where they go right back to their lives and continue to victimize the community.
The death toll for Officers in 2007 is an outrage. There is no excuse possible for this. .
My dad, I miss him every day.
Originally Posted by Wolven
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01-21-08, 09:42 AM #3Rookie
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I work the Home Confinement program for our Sheriff department. Our mindset within the department at least is that we have 26 rules, you have already gotten your break by being granted this sentence instead of jail, so if you break one of the rules you go to jail. As I said that is "our" mindset, unfortunately it does not always seem to be the mindset of the court. Two examples of this are; a breath test was done on a young man and he failed, drinking vodka (he didnt know it was in the OJ was his defense) the magisrate left him on Home Confinement after we arrested him for violating, this same young man later cut his bracelet and ran, I charged him with a home confinement violation, destruction of property and escape. When he was caught 2 weeks later he resisted the Trooper who found him, he was brought to court and the magistrate fined him for destruction of property and gave him probation for the home confinement violation and NOTHING for escape. Example two, I have drug tested a man 5 times, each time he has failed, each time I did the complaint for violation of probation, he is now doing probation for 5th offense violation of probation. Same magisrate both times and thre are many more cases of hers like that.
Alternative sentence programs are good things for certain people but when it is evident that a person cannot or will not abide by the rules then they need to be abd deserve to be in jail. When people commit certain criimes they need to be in jail...when they repeat offend they need to be in jail. Is it that hard for judges, magistrates to see?
Some wish to use the "overcrowding of jails" as an excuse for letting people out. Ok, the jails are overcrowded, for what it costs to take these people to court over and over and over again, new jails can be built and just like the movie said...if you build it they will come.
Countybear, in your post it states that "Probation and Parole is not a supervision of offenders, it is a simply registry of them." My primary duty is working in an alternative sentencing program, and yet I must agree with you. Probation and parole seems to be a failure and I think the main reason for that is high numbers of parolees being supervised by 1 or 2 officers, many alternative sentencing programs seem to be a failure. I try, I make an effort to not become a registry. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose (I really lose when the magistrate makes stupid decisions). Is there an answer that will cut down on recidivisim and hopefully Officer deaths? Yes I am sure there is.....Will the Goverment (federal, state, county and local) listen to that answer? Probably not.Stay safe, let's all go home.
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