Just Talkin’


JT has had his sugar rush – for the year. One night of trick-or-treating has stocked up his cabinet for the year. There were some cute monsters, villains, witches, Paw Patrollers and superheroes out and about on Halloween night, but on the day following Halloween, those characters became a reality.

Forty-one inmates were scheduled for release in Natchitoches Parish beginning Wednesday, Nov. 1 under Gov. John Bel Edwards’ Justice Reinvestment Reforms plan. Sheriff Victor Jones Jr. and District Attorney Billy Joe Harrington have gone on the record saying they have concerns about the plan. It all comes down to reputation and finances. Louisiana has the highest incarceration rate per capita.

JT thinks that shows our law enforcement and justice systems are working correctly.

Apparently Gov. Edwards sees it as a detriment to the economy. We have criminals in Louisiana locked up – GASP! The horror! JT thinks that is a statistic where the state should be exhibiting pride, not the other way around. At some point safety of the citizens must trump the almighty dollar. JT thinks this is a bad idea. A really bad idea. Of the 41 prisoners being released, 16 are repeat offenders.

Emphasis on that – repeat.

They didn’t learn their lesson the first time around or possibly even the second or third time either so they’re being released because of a stigma of having too many criminals locked up. Does that make sense? If cost is an issue, then what about the local cost to investigate the crimes they are likely to commit next? What about the cost to the future victims? What about the cost to the jail and local government to house them once they return to the system?

And speaking of cost, what will this do to Probation and Parole? They already have a stack of files knee deep to track, now that stack is going to be waist or even neck deep and they weren’t provided chest waders to trek through the quagmire this “act” will create. Sheriff Jones said it best in an article in the Oct. 19 edition of the Natchitoches Times, “I’ve been in law enforcemnt for a long time, I don’t know of any of these offenders serving time for not committing a crime.”

That’s basically it in a nutshell.

Do the crime.

Do the time – all of it.

Then go home to your families and friends and be an asset to your community and not a liability. There may not be any more “Get out of jail free” cards in the future.

Speaking of P&P.

JT says Kudos to Dist. Manager Nicole Mitchell with Probation and Parole for implementing the mandatory sex offender meeting Halloween night. A proactive step in protecting the public, especially the very young costumed, bucket carrying, candy consuming public.