Houston, we have a problem

On June 1st, 2016, People magazine reported on the arrest of a single suspect in the murder of 15 year old Katen Perez, whose brutalized remains were found, not by the Houston police or the Harris County Sheriff but by Texas EquuSearch.

According to the People article the rape and murder of Karen Perez was caught on the suspect’s cellphone.

Harris Co. is not releasing the suspect’s name…wait for it…because he is a juvenile.

He should be charged as an adult, prosecuted as an adult, and his identity exposed as an adult.

For that matter, all the involved possible accomplices should also be formally charged.

For the following reasons:

If you commit a capital felony offense (a fully grown-up crime) you should have to deal with the law as an adult.

Should be enough.  But there is a chilling “because”/second reason–

For years now Texas has been quietly compensating for aggregious juvenile offenders in order to save money on their incarceration and probation.

The  laws of privacy protect the juvenile offenders, allowing them to get juvenile-only plea deals for monstrous felonies then quietly exit the system as adults with no records.

These laws do so at the expense of their former and future victims.

I watched all of this play out in real time.

My adopted son plead no contest to a minor charge.  He was never tried for hundreds of felony offenses.  He was promised no criminal record.  

His story and the stories of several other youthful felony offenders I spoke to during his year in juvenile detention align with the identity protection given to the teen who raped and murdered Karen Perez.

For years now in Texas many juvenile offenders  get far better deals than their victims.

And regrettably, more protection.

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