Put Career Criminals In Jail & Throw Away The Key

Put Career Criminals In Jail & Throw Away The Key: I’m a big supporter of laws that are very tough on repeat offenders,” but some people — judges included — don’t agree. Here’s one case in question

” A judge reluctantly gave a man life in prison after a $20 burglary, saying he had no choice under a state law that requires such terms for repeat offenders.

Circuit Judge Bob Wattles called the punishment unjust and unfair.

“I don’t have the authority or the power to not sentence you to life,” Wattles told Maurice Leonard Reed, 37, of nearby Apopka, at his Tuesday sentencing.

…Reed was charged in February with robbery and burglary from an attempted undercover drug buy. He had jumped into an undercover officer’s car and offered to sell him drugs. When the deputy was distracted, Reed snatched a $20 bill from his hand, hit him in the face and jumped out of the car.

…During his sentencing hearing, Reed acknowledged that he had led a life of crime. He has had convictions ranging from aggravated battery with a deadly weapon to cocaine and heroin sales.

“I know I’ve made some mistakes in my life,” Reed told the judge. “I don’t think putting me away for life is going to bring on justice. I just come to the court for mercy.”

The judge said his hands were tied and noted that the cost of Reed’s incarceration will be $560,000 if he lives to be age 75.”

First off, the opening of the article is misleading. Yes, Reed committed a $20 burglary — he also assaulted an undercover officer after offering to sell him drugs.

But theoretically, let’s say that Reed really didn’t do anything but snatch $20 and run. Would it still be worth putting him in jail for life? Absolutely, because he’s not being sentenced to life for just stealing $20 — he’s going to spend his life in jail because he has led a life of crime. Judges often take people’s previous police record into account in their sentencing and when they’re dealing with a career criminal like this guy, they need to put them away to protect society.

Now some people — like the judge — point out the expense of incarcerating this man for life. But society pays a huge price for letting a career criminal like Reed roam the streets. Just think about how many hospital bills, police reports, & property repairs are going to be caused by a thug like this over the course of his lifetime. Consider how many lives this guy is going to help ruin by selling them drugs. What about all the victims he is undoubtedly going to rob and beat-up? When this violent thug with a record as long as your arm goes too far and kills someone’s wife or son (if he hasn’t already without being caught), what do you say to their family; “We didn’t know he was dangerous?” Give me a break!

Putting career criminals like Maurice Leonard Reed away for life is one of the most important things we can do to help reduce crime in our country and I only wish it were happening more often.

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