Fight Covid-19 by Letting Prisoners Go? Let’s Be Careful!
March 19, 2020
A 75-year-old who relies on a walker probably can’t be a car-jacker.
An 80-year-old who uses a wheelchair probably isn’t going to hold up a 7-11.
But let’s remember that either of them could hurt a child.
Some say that because of Covid-19, we should let many inmates leave prison early. That might be a good idea in some cases.
Still, let’s keep the sex offenders locked up. They do incredible damage. They’re among the most likely to commit more crimes. And they don’t need to be fast or strong to inflict harm.
A purse snatcher needs speed. A bank robber needs a gun, mask and get-away car. A child molester only needs access, and sometimes only for a few seconds.
It also helps an abuser, of course, if he or she is cunning. (That helps him or her GAIN access and go uncaught.) Sadly, however, older abusers are often the most shrewd, in part because they’ve had years more experience.
So prison officials shouldn’t be lax just because a child molester is bald, wears thick glasses or is stoop-shouldered. An aging abuser may be among the most dangerous.
We all know that hospitals, cruise ships and restaurants are risky places to be these days. Jails and prisons, however, are likely even more risky, given how unsanitary and crowded they are and how impossible ‘social distancing’ is when two adults share a tiny cell.
That’s why, according to the Associated Press, “Coronavirus has become a ‘get out of jail’ card for hundreds of low-level inmates across the country” and “America’s nearly 7,000 jails, prisons and correction facilities are an ideal breeding ground for the virus. . .”
So again, from a public health standpoint, releasing some inmates makes sense. But NOT those who sodomize, rape and fondle kids, no matter how old or allegedly ‘reformed’ the offender may seem.
Miami defense lawyer Bill Barzee makes a valid point: “No judge wants to have a dead prisoner on his conscience.”
Neither, though, would a judge want to have the rape of a girl or boy on his conscience, knowing that it could have been prevented with just a bit of caution and common sense.