Justice Department, stay out

July 17, 2013 

Once again come the know everything/know nothing critics. This time bench warmer quarterbacks would venture an opinion on a criminal trial without being a witness or a juror. Their comments are irrelevant.

The real casualty of all of this commentary on the trial in Florida is the concept of a trial by jury.

Both sides had many opportunities to affect the selection of the jurors. The jury listened to the facts as presented, and some presumptions that were not facts, and then made a decision.

If we are to remain a free and democratic society, that should be the end. If the federal government gets involved and tries to recharge anyone it will violate double jeopardy, in spirit if not in fact. If they can do that, they could send anyone they want to Gitmo without a trial. If we cannot live with a jury decision, we and all our laws are in danger.

If people want to protest perceived injustice, I would hope the people of Illinois would get really involved in review of capital crimes with a potential death sentence, which have been shown many times in this state to result in bad decisions. If not at that level, they might question why we have, and regale over, the publication of arrest records that name people convicted of nothing.

Joseph M. Reichert


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