Sunday, September 24, 2006

From the Revolving Door Files

Via the Boston Herald:

Hub gangsters are driving the staggering number of shootings on city streets this year - with 70 percent of the victims identified by Boston police as members or associates of street gangs. That astonishing figure has left city cops grappling with a low clearance rate on gunfire cases and prompted officials to add more detectives to neighborhoods hardest hit by bullets.

As opposed to adding more inmates to the state's prisons populations, I'm guessing.

Read on.

[Dunford] also points to the Suffolk County District Attorney'’s Office Gun Court, which began six months ago as a way to streamline firearms cases that would often become stagnant in court and eventually be dismissed.

Cases such as that of Andy Fernandes, 25, of Dorchester. Fernandes was shot earlier this year and refused to cooperate with investigators after he was wounded.

But cops suspect that Fernandes himself has been a triggerman in several unsolved shootings, according to BPD sources. Prosecutors said he has been busted for carrying a loaded firearm five times over the past seven years.

The defense rests.

So, shootings are up, arrests are down, and in those rare instances where an arrest is followed by a conviction and an actual prison sentence, these violent gang members are being sent back to the streets, seemingly before they even have a chance to muss up the sheets on their prison bunks.

Stop me if you've heard this one before.

"Yeah, but, if only we had a "One Gun a Month" restriction on purchases by licensed gun owners in Massachusetts, or a 15-day waiting period to purchase. Now, that would teach these violent, incorrigible felons a lesson they'd never forget."

No matter how many times I type words to this effect, I'm amazed that there are still people in this country who honestly believe, deep within their hearts, that sparing these "misunderstood youth" the "indignity" of real prison time, while at the same time depriving the law-abiding citizenry of the right to legal, effective self-defense, is sound, "progressive" social policy.