Maybe it’s something in the air or food or the virus causing the record spike in crime. The source of the crime wave is a real head-scratcher to the political class. But to those of us who live in the real world, the culprit for the sudden reversal in crime trends is obvious. We no longer lock up even the most violent criminals, particularly juvenile offenders. The case of Javontae Williams, 17, in Columbus, Ohio, is as predictable as it is tragic and exemplifies why there are so many violent criminals on the streets today relative to the last decade.
In October 2020, Javontae Williams, 17, was arrested in Columbus, Ohio for the murder of 21-year-old Sage Martin in a mall parking lot on September 20. He is accused of standing over the victim and shooting him point-blank while he lay on the ground. Yet as of last week, he is free as a bird as he awaits trial.
According to the Columbus Dispatch, Williams had a lengthy rap sheet and was already under house arrest and electronic monitoring for other crimes. But two and a half months before he allegedly committed the murder, Williams was taken off electronic monitoring in what is known as the “honor system house arrest.” Now, despite that he is accused of breaking that honor system in the most profound way, Judge Kim Browne allowed Williams to be released on bail, which he posted last Monday.
The mother of Sage Martin put out the following statement:
Just as the rest of the community, I am truly flabbergasted that first Juvenile Justice Kim Browne gave such a low bond and although I understand Judge Chris Brown did not want to overturn his colleague[‘]s ruling, I find it reckless considering how the court is very much aware that in 2020 alone, that Javontae has been caught with firearms. As his charges escalated, his punishments lessened. From being in a Juvenile Detention Center to Ankle monitoring, it’s very disheartening that Judicial System did the very minimum to stop him from wreaking havoc on our community. I thank everyone for their continued prayers as we await justice as a community.
Prosecutors are now concerned that witnesses, of which there are many, will be scared to testify. This is a growing problem with violent criminals increasingly being released multiple times before trial. Not only is there a risk that they will commit more crimes, but it makes it hard to land a conviction even for the original crime because witnesses are dissuaded from testifying. This is done by design to keep criminals out of prison and on the streets.
Judge Browne was the chief author of a statement issued by the Franklin County Juvenile Court judges in February calling a recent effort by police to target juvenile crime as “unnecessary detention of predominately African-American youths” and called the police press conference “propaganda.”
Our country is facing a plague of youth crime, particularly carjackings, but the woke judges are playing the race card against the citizenry of this country. According to the FBI Uniform Crime report, in 2018, black youth were responsible for 58% of juvenile murders, 64% of robbery, 41% of aggravated assault, 52% of motor vehicle theft, and 48% of overall violent crime among offenders under 18. If it is now the policy of our judicial system that black juveniles cannot be punished for violent crime, our country is in grave trouble, and the first to pay for it will be black victims of crime, such as Sage Martin.
Ohio in particular has been hit by rising crime among teens and adults. All of the state’s major cities experienced record homicides in 2020. With 147 homicides last year, Columbus surpassed the original record set in 1991. Central Ohio is plagued by a rash of juvenile car thefts committed by children who seem to be younger and younger.
As long ago as 1981, Reagan’s Task Force on Victims of Crime observed, “A substantial proportion of the violent crime in this country is committed by juveniles, who are becoming more violent at an increasingly early age.” The report also noted that “juveniles too often are not held accountable for their conduct, and the system perpetuates this lack of accountability.” Both of those factors are demonstrably more poignant today than 40 years ago and are, to a large degree, fueling the sharpest increase in crime in a generation.
At present, we have an epidemic of crime that has been exacerbated by the race-baiters who believe, as Orwell said in “Animal Farm,” that “some animals are more equal than others.” Also, COVID, which has been used as an excuse to upend every aspect of civilization, has further exacerbated the trend of people being released to commit more crimes. A woman in Riverside, California, was stabbed to death over the weekend allegedly by a woman who had been released just four days before after assaulting another woman with a deadly weapon. According to CNN, “she was released shortly thereafter on a ‘notice to appear’ citation due to the current emergency bail schedule in place in Riverside during the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Thus, almost every violent criminal is now released to commit more crimes without any deterrent. Meanwhile, the only people in this country who have been held without bail are those Capitol Hill protesters against whom there was “no evidence” showing they “vandalized any property or physically harmed any person.”
In a world turned upside down, violent criminals are treated like nonviolent delinquents, while nonviolent people are treated like mass murderers. But of course, it all depends on the color of skin of the offender. Lady Justice is no longer blind. The woke judges have given her 20/20 vision to discriminate with perfect precision.