"And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God"
-- Micah 6:8

"The duty of the prosecutor is to seek justice, not merely to convict."
-- American Bar Association Standard 3-1.2(c)

"There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia."
--Pope Benedict XVI, June 2004

Friday, February 25, 2011

Wisdom From an Unusual Source

From Washington state comes this:

Byron Scherf was serving a life sentence for his third rape conviction. By many board of corrections measures, he was viewed as a model inmate, having completed a slew of typical prison rehabilitation fare, such as the "Peace Between People" workshop, "Advanced Peace Between People" program, "Discipleship seminar," and a "How to be Your Own Best Friend" program. It seems he failed the practice portions of these worthy programs, however, when he strangled to death a female correctional officer in the prison chapel.

Just another example of a violent inmate killing while in prison? Well, yes, but Scherf himself tutors us on exactly why we can never hope to render some offenders harmless short of executing them:

"'I took her life and I think I should forfeit mine,' Scherf told Monroe police investigators earlier this month, according to the documents. 'If I get a life sentence and she's [dead] then there's no punishment attached to it because I already have a life sentence.'"

Bingo.

LWOP simply does not render violent offenders harmless, if anything, it is a blank check to assault or even kill fellow inmates or correctional staff. After all, what punishment can be inflicted worse than LWOP when you're already serving that sentence?

H/T: Crime and Consequences.

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