Friday, July 15, 2005

Crime and Punishment

Today I came across two stories that both had me saying to myself, "What the hell was that guy thinking?"

A 27-year-old man offered $25 to a player on his TEE-BALL TEAM to hit an 8-year-old boy on his own team, whose apparent sin was that he was not a good baseball player and the coach was looking for a way to not play the 8-year-old. The player, not knowing any better, hit the 8-year-old boy near his left ear and in the groin area. The 8-year-old boy was of course unable to play. The police found about this incident after the 8-year-old's mother confronted the boy and subsequently told her about the payment offer. The coach, Mark Reed Downs Jr., was arrested and charged with criminal solicitation to commit aggravated assault, corruption of minors and reckless endangerment.

I have heard and seen some crazy baseball dads in my many years of playing and umpiring baseball games, but this so far beyond anything I've seen or heard that words cannot describe my disbelief. Whatever the maximum sentence for his charges is, he should get it. Hell if it were 1798 as opposed to 2005, I would have no problem with a public flogging in the town square.

Now on to the other story. I have read my fair share of ill-conceived criminal plots, but this takes the cake. A 60-year-old Georgia man, William Crutchfield, who was $90,000 in debt came up with a not-so-brilliant plan to get out of his debt. And no it did involve robbing a bank with a water pistol. No, instead, he decided he would shoot and kill his mailman, so he could get the government to pay for all his expenses while he served a life sentence in prison. Luckily for the mailman, Crutchfield, did not hit any vital organs when he shot him 7 times, however, the mailman, Earl Lazenby, suffered 29 holes in his colon and intestines and shattered bones in his arm.

While I have never spent a day in any kind of prison facility, I willing to bet that spending time in a federal prison is not like spending a few nights at the local Red Roof Inn. I hope he enjoys eating god-awful food, making sure he doesn't get raped or his ass kicked by his fellow inmates on a daily basis and being confined to a 9' by 9' space most of the day. You better be careful what you wish for, Mr. Crutchfield, you just might get it.