Outrage over Jason Van Dyke’s release not necessary
Van Dyke was charged, convicted and sentenced to 81 months in prison for the fatal 2014 shooting. He was released early because of “good time” just like other eligible prisoners.
Several politicians including Toni Preckwinkle and Bobby Rush, activists like William Calloway, and the Revs. Jesse Jackson and Michael Pfleger, are up in arms over Jason Van Dyke’s release from state prison. Sun-Times’ columnist Mary Mitchell called the former officer’s actions “police terrorism” and says his sentence for shooting and killing Laquan McDonald was inadequate and shockingly light.
Many want to see Van Dyke charged with civil rights violations, yet it appears as if the U.S. attorney won’t be going that route. Van Dyke was charged, convicted and sentenced to 81 months in prison for the fatal 2014 shooting. He was released early because of “good time” just like other eligible prisoners.
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Some people seem to have an issue with the length of Van Dyke’s sentence, which was determined by Cook County Judge Vincent Gaughan. Van Dyke didn’t sentence himself for shooting the Black teenager.
A few weeks ago, a 16-year-old alleged gang-banger shot and killed 8-year-old Melissa Ortega while she was walking with her mother. He had been given probation for the three armed carjackings he committed within a year. That was an inadequate sentence. Maybe we need judicial reform or is this case about race more than justice?
Richard Barber, Mount Greenwood
Adults, not remote learning, are to blame in teen carjackings
Linking remote learning to the increase in carjackings, as Mayor Lori Lightfoot did this week, is just a bunch of hooey. But I do want to know who helped these minors commit these crimes. No, my Chicago Public School teacher friends, I’m not looking at you. It seems to me that often these juveniles are not taken into custody, so the crimes continue.
This past weekend an armed carjacking took place by my West Rogers Park residence. Our security camera captured the gazelle-like carjacker in a blue hoodie exiting the passenger side door of a slow-moving red car. The suspect, who walked like a gangly teen, accosted the victim as the red car sped off. I couldn’t make out who was behind the wheel, but if adult perps know that armed kids won’t be put behind bars, they can easily pimp them out.
In my neighborhood, we hope would-be carjackers will stay in school. If not, we have a stick-shift VW and a “dummy” wallet with an expired $50 Michael’s gift card inside. I don’t know what we’d do with the adult ring-leaders. But, dammit mayor, you’d better figure that out and lay off my teachers.
Kyra Miller, West Rogers Park