Hutchinson: Juv Court “No Bargain” for Bell

Earl Ofari Hutchinson has some good commentary on DA Reed Walters’s decision, following Governor Blanco’s request, to abandon his plan to take the Third Court of Appeals decision on Mychal Bell’s case up to the Louisiana Supreme Court. Instead he will, in all likelihood, retry Bell in juvenile court. This may sound like progress, Hutchinson notes, but given what passes for justice in Louisiana’s juvenile courts, it’s not. The juvenile justice system in Louisiana, he explains, is “a broken, flawed, repressive system that emphasizes punishment, and not rehabilitation for teens.”

A few weeks ago, when Bell’s conviction was vacated, lead counsel Louis Scott drew on a football metaphor to explain what had happened. “We started the game down by a touchdown and a field goal,” he told the New York Times. “On September 4 [the day Bell’s charges were reduced] we got the field goal. Today, we got the touchdown. Now, we get to start the game all over again.” The good news is that Bell will head into this “new game” with a much stronger defense and a national audience watching to make sure the refs are calling it fair.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s