Punishment does not fit the crime
March 12, 2001
To the Editor;
In reference to Grant Taylor, I believe in this case the punishment does not fit the crime. Here is a man who was a scout leader, an Eagle Scout himself, active in his church, a soccer coach, a volunteer at school … in short, a man who deliberately placed himself in positions of trust with children and adults. This same man then assaults a child and, instead of receiving any jail time for this crime, is given probation. I understand the concerns of the victim’s family and how difficult a trial process could be. However, couldn’t this child have been interviewed on tape to ease this very diffficult situation? Why must the victim be subjected to numerous interviews to convict someone of a crime when the accused can only be tried once?
Mr. Taylor was charged with two felonies. The first, a Class 3 felony of sexual assault on a child by one in a position of trust, which can carry a possible sentence of up to 32 years, was dismissed. Why? The second, a Class 4 felony of sexual assault on a child, in which Taylor guilty, carries a possible sentence of up to 16 years and he receives probation. How can probation with no jail time be justified?
Are we not as a society sending a message to our children that it is okay to assault a child because our legal process allows predators to plea bargain their case and avoid jail? Also, why is it that it is either jail time without counseling versus counseling without jail time? Why isn’t our system set up so a convicted sex offender receives jail time with mandatory, intense counseling after release from jail?
I hope and encourage other members of this community to voice their opinion. Our lawmakers need to know what we think.