15-Year Old Gets Two to Six Years for Robbery that Netted Him 7 Cents

30 Aug

anthony stewart gets felony record over seven cents

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World 

A 15-year old boy in Syracuse, NY will receive two to six years in juvenile detention for a robbery that won he and his accomplice the princely sum of just seven cents.  The boy also gets to live the rest of his life with a felony record.

Anthony Stewart was not treated by Judge William Walsh as a juvenile offender.  Some speculate that the ruling would have been different if Stewart had pleaded guilty in advance instead of fighting his case.  Now, the case stays on his record until he’s an old man.

Walsh’s 16-year old accomplice, Skyler Ninham, was sentenced as a youthful offender and given one and one-third to four years in state prison.  Ninham and the 73-year old man that they robbed identified Stewart as a participant in the robbery, “And yet you still denied it,” Walsh said to Stewart. “Well, that cost you.”

The jury convicted Stewart of first-degree robbery in July.  Prosecutors allege that Stewart and Ninham ran up to their victim and knocked him to the ground on December 22.  Ninham kicked the victim and Stewart punched him in the face, breaking his glasses, when the victim handed the assailants seven cents.

The two teens had handguns during the robbery, but they were later identified as BB guns.  A probation officer recommended youthful offender status for Stewart before his sentencing. 

Lawyer Laurin Haddad, who represented Stewart, said afterward that she was disappointed by the judge’s decision to deny youthful-offender treatment. In a presentencing report, a probation officer also recommended treating Stewart as a youthful offender.

“For seven cents, now you’re making someone a felon for the rest of his life,” said Laurin Haddad, Stewart’s attorney.

This case is interesting for at least a couple of reasons.  First, we must obviously remain concerned about a justice system that severely punishes its citizens for utilizing their right to fight for their own freedom.  The “confess or pay” model of justice has sent many innocent men and women to prison because they couldn’t afford an adequate defense attorney.

Given that both the victim and co-defendant identify Stewart as a participant in the crime, it is highly likely that he played a part in what happened to this innocent senior citizen.  The idea of being attacked in such a brutal and senseless way both frightens and angers anyone who hears about this case.

The second interesting thing about Stewart’s case is that the amount of money Stewart received from his victim is not nearly as relevant as the brutality of the crime.  Even if he’d walked away with nothing, that doesn’t take away the fact that he attacked his victim in such a horrible way, while at least appearing to be armed with a weapon.  I argue that he is being sentenced for what he did, which has nothing to do with the fact that the robbery was a bad investment on the part of the perpetrators.

Finally, it must be considered that in spite of the brutality of his crime, Stewart is still just 15-years old.  This is where the “fear of the scary black teenager” comes into play.  Those who run our legal system want to believe that Stewart is beyond redemption, and that ruining his life is a small cost of maintaining law and order.  On the other hand, there are those who correctly and accurately note that he is still a young man can be redeemed into a productive member of society.

Unfortunately, the hundreds of thousands (and perhaps millions) of dollars that will be spent incarcerating Stewart and making him into a worse criminal could have been spent on an equally aggressive rehabilitation program.  I can guarantee that in spite of the heinous nature of Stewart’s crime, he is about as normal as any other 10th grader.  I can also guarantee that if he were a wealthy white kid, Stewart’s life might have redeeming value to those who are so anxious to destroy it.

Dr. Boyce Watkins is a Syracuse University Professor and founder of the Your Black World Coalition.  To have Dr.  Boyce commentary delivered to your email, please click here. 

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37 Responses to “15-Year Old Gets Two to Six Years for Robbery that Netted Him 7 Cents”

  1. BuckwheatsMomma August 30, 2011 at 7:24 pm #

    It is not about 7 Cents!

    It is about these young thugs causing harm to another human being, and trying to rob someone.

    Had they gotten aways with it, the next time could have been worse.

    Any time a youth takes up any type of gun (BB or whatever), that youth needs to be checked. Perhaps he will have time to think about the choice he made during his 2-4 years.

    • WizardG August 30, 2011 at 8:20 pm #

      @BuckwheatsMomma I don’t know what you’re posing to be with an ID such as that, but I can tell by your comments and that ID that you’re a cold hearted insane SOB. You have no concept of the true tragedy of our era, but if you do it only proves further how out-of-touch with reality, heartless, and hateful you have grown to become.

      • Anonymous September 2, 2011 at 6:13 pm #

        This young may deserves some type of punishment but to destroy the possible of him having a life after is punishment is not right at all. The felony charge is a life charge……

  2. WizardG August 30, 2011 at 8:15 pm #

    “Stewart is still just 15-years old. This is where the “fear of the scary black teenager” comes into play.”
    Those of you with a case of amnesia must try to remember who runs this country, what kind of country it is and what community of people have been horribly abused for centuries! The constitution’s 14th amendment which states that we are not to be enslaved also states that slavery can only be continued in prisons. Those of you who are living some kind of white-washed fantasy ‘American Dream’ are unable to wake up to the realization that we are still a target and as such many of our youth are guaranteed to be locked up for almost any reason and soon for no reason whatsoever. So as you read that “blacks” are the first and foremost to be unemployed and impoverished etc. understand that this also means that many will resort to desperate measures and boys are still the most immature of the human race. Young boys that are improperly guided and faced with many problems will be easy pickings for this very racist white-supremacist society with its mentally deficient social structure and diverse communities of very fearful, angry, and hateful people.

    Remember that the judicial system, just as everything else, is top heavily white-owned and operated, which means that a large percentage of those top spots are filled with Klansman, neo-Nazis and skinhead type mentalities. Know that even colleges and K-12 schools are owned and operated by many of these same types. Remember that they do a fairly decent job of hiding their hatred towards “blacks”, but can easily show it in ways that may seem justified to the masses under the guise of crime and punishment.

    We are surrounded by some very vile and vicious people and they are slowly but surely making the lives of particular groups of citizens a living hell. Try to understand that issues like the kind this youth finds himself in is just the tip of the iceberg and there is much worse to come now that the racists have put a genuine ‘black/white’ –Black man into their prized leadership role to support them as they attack blacks across the diaspora with gusto and zeal! The Jews have wealth, Israel with its might, and a very strong ‘Jewish Defense League’, and what we have as defense and support amounts to a black boyscout troop surrounded by the White-owned and operated International Boy-scouts of America!
    All of this may be difficult for some conditioned and brainwashed (White-Washed) minds to digest, but I beg of you to try as hard as you can!

    • B August 30, 2011 at 11:00 pm #

      With the exception of the bit about Jewish people (since I don’t dice white racists up into categories such as that), I AGREE! This should not come as a surprise to anyone. Smh.

  3. Anonymous August 30, 2011 at 10:14 pm #

    i AGREE WITH THIS POSTING EXCEPT IF THIS WAS A WHITE boy weather rich or not he would not have been treated the same. There is one justice for blacks and another for whites,as it’s always been.

  4. Anonymous August 30, 2011 at 10:16 pm #

    Remember people this is the United states of raceism

  5. Danette Chavis August 30, 2011 at 10:29 pm #

    I AM NOT IMPRESSED WITH THE FACT HE WAS “IDENTIFIED” IN THE CRIME, NOR THE FACT HE “ACTUALLY COMMITTED A ROBBERY” AND BRUTALIZED THE VICTIM IN THE PROCESS. HOW DOES ONE SIDE WITH A JUDICIAL SYSTEM, WHICH IS “BIAS” IN HANDING OUT SENTENCING AND PENALIZING THE DEFENDENT WHEN ENFORCING THEIR RIGHTS AND ENTERING IN A PLEA “NOT GUILTY”? THAT ALONE SHOWS THE INTENT OF THE COURT “PENALIZE” FOR “WRESTING RIGHTS” TO HIMSELF, WHICH THEY BELIEVE HE IS “NOT ENTITLED TO. THE EXPECTION OF THE COURT IS AN “ADMISSION OF GUILT” – WHETHER OR NOT YOU COMMITTED THE CRIME! THEREFORE WHEN ACCUSED OF A CRIME, THE EXPECTATION IS YOU “PLEAD FOR MERCY”. YOUR “GUILT OR INNOCENCE” IN THE MATTER IS OF LIITLE CONSEQUENCE BEFORE THE COURTS. FOR THE ONLY “CRIME” THEY SEE, IS THE PRESENCE OF A “BLACK MALE” IN THEIR MIST. AND FOR THAT ALONE ARE YOU DEEMED “GUILTY”. AND THOSE WHO DARE TO ENFORCE “PRESUMED RIGHTS” SHALL DEARLY PAY FOR IT. FOR THE ONLY RIGHT A BLACK MALE (OR FEMALE) HAS, IS “THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT” WHEN BEING ACCUSED. FOR ANYTHING YOU “SAY OR DO” WILL BE USED “AGAINST YOU IN A COURT OF LAW”. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO AN ATTORNEY – ONLY BECAUSE THEY “THEMSELVES” SHALL BE “YOUR ATTORNEY” AND ASSIST YOU IN “COPING A PLEA” WHICH IS AN “ADMISSION OF GUILT”. AND THOSE HAVING THE AUDACITY TO INSIST IN THEIR “INNOCENCE” SHALL DEARLY PAY FOR IT!! CASE AND POINT; THE 15 YEAR OLD WHO WAS SENTENCED TO TWO “SIX YEAR TERMS”. THEREFORE, WHY SHOULD I BE “IMPRESSED” WITH THE ATTEMPTED ROBBERY OR THE VICIOUSNESS OF THE CRIME AND “SIDE WITH” THE SENTENCING OF THE COURT AND SAY IT IS “JUST” WHEN THE JUDGE “HIMSELF” DECLARED THE YOUNGMAN WAS SENTENCED – NOT BECAUSE OF THE “ROBBERY” HE COMMITTED, NOT BECAUSE OF THE “VICIOUSNESS” OF THE CRIME, BUT BECAUSE HE “INSISTED IN HIS INNOCENCE”! SO WE CAN ONLY CONCLUDE THAT IN THE “EYES OF THE COURT”, THE PLEA OF “NOT GUILTY” WAS THE “ONLY CRIME” BEFORE THEM. AND FOR THAT INDEED, THE YOUNG MAN PAID “DEARLY”.

  6. Regina August 30, 2011 at 10:48 pm #

    Regina

    I agree with everything being said about the judicial system. It is definitely skewed against Black people. In particular, black males. I’m just curious, though., what kind of punishment or, maybe I should ask, what would you do with these young men? After all, they have abused and possibly scared the h— out of someone for life, not to mention the senseless violence against another human being. We have a major problem on our hands! What do we as Black people do???

  7. Danette Chavis August 30, 2011 at 11:10 pm #

    AND SINCE WHEN DOES A PLEA OF “NOT GUILTY” HAVE TO BE ENTERED INTO THE RECORDS “ABSENT” ANY EVIDENCE INDICATING “GUILT”? FOR THE PRESUMPTION OF THE COURT IN THE CASE OF THE 15 YEAR OLD SEEMS TO IMPLY, THE YOUNG MAN WAS “WRONG” FOR INSISTING IN HIS “INNOCENCE” BECAUSE OF THE TWO WITNESSES WHO TESTIFIED TO HIS GUILT. BUT THE TRUTH OF THE MATTER IS, “NO CASE” IS BROUGHT BEFORE THE COURTS “WITHOUT” EVIDENCE OF GUILT! AND THOSE BEING ACCUSED HAVE “ALWAYS” CONFESSED THEIR “INNOCENCE”. SO WHY REPRIMAND HARSHLY FOR HIS DOING SO, UNLESS SUCH “RIGHTS” WERE NOT INTENDED FOR THOSE OF HIS RACE? HOW IS IT, THAT “ALL OTHERS” CAN AVAIL THEMSELVES OF THESE RIGHTS EXCEPT – BLACK MALES ACCUSED OF A CRIME!? CHECK THE RECORDS! NEARLY “ALL” WHO ARE INCARCERATED “PLEADED GUILTY” IN EXCHANGE FOR THE “LESSER SENTENCE” AND ARE THEREFORE IN PRISON NOT BECAUSE THEY “COMMITTED A CRIME” BUT BECAUSE THEY WERE “ACCUSED” OF “COMMITTING A CRIME! BECAUSE FOR THE BLACK MALE, THE “ACCUSATION” ALONE IS SUFFICENT TO SEND HIM OFF TO PRISON! AND THOSE WHO INSIST IN THEIR “INNOCENCE” SHALL DEARLY “PAY FOR IT”. WHICH IS WHY THE “MAJORITY” OF THOSE ACCUSED “ADMIT GUILT”… WHETHER OR NOT THEY COMMITTED THE CRIME.

  8. Candy August 30, 2011 at 11:26 pm #

    What everyone is overlooking is that he robbed someone as well as beating them. He committed a crime. He should be punished for it. He is 15 years old and knew what he was doing. He knew enough to get a gun/weapon and try to intimidate someone.

    It is not about the money.

    It is about being held responsible for your actions. It is said that everyone is trying to justify what he did and saying the sentence is wrong. What if that was your grandfather or grandparent. What if that was someone you loved and cared about.

    He committed a crime. And then try to deny it and not take responsibility cause hey it was only 7 cents. We all work hard out here. We should not have to worry about getting robbed, beat, shot or possibly killed for the little change we have in our pockets.

    If you want money, find a **LEGAL** way to get some.

    Is the sentence harsh? Maybe. But what would you have done? What is there to be done because we have countless black males committing crimes and going to jail instead of investing in themselves and their future.

    Yes times are hard. But maybe we should think like this. “If I can’t afford it, I don’t need it. Or if I want it, I will *WORK* for it. Instead of going out and committing a crime, terrorizing someone and harming someone or possibly killing someone.”

    • Destiny Adams Jackson September 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm #

      I agree with Candy. I don’t feel sorry for him because it was only 7 cents. It doesn’t make him a victim, it just makes him plain stupid. He deserves a Felony for being plain stupid. Protect our old people by teaching our young people. I think we should put his parents in jail too.

    • Black&Proud September 2, 2011 at 6:18 pm #

      Candy you are on point!!! I’m sick of excuses being made for these young BLACK boys that are reeking havoc on society. Time out for the race card, studies show (men lie, women lie, numbers don’t) that young offenders will offend again. Why? Because they are being charged as juvineles and getting light senteces and now they think the system is a joke. I’m a mom of two black sons and I have made it clear to them that there is nothing they can do to make me stop loving them however i will turn their little behinds in if they break the law. These young men need to start being accountable for their actions! I almost feel like the parents need to be held accountable too…GET YOUR KIDS! Now if this were two white kids and a 73 yr old black man, we’d be up in arms if they got anything less than what he was charged with. I don’t think the judge was as concerned with him just copping a plea as she probably was him being responsible for his actions…something WE as a race are lacking.

  9. Danette Chavis August 30, 2011 at 11:30 pm #

    REGINA: “WHAT CAN WE DO”? YOU HAVE STATED “WE HAVE A MAJOR PROBLEM ON OUR HANDS” AND YOU ARE CORRECT. BUT INDEED, WHICH “PROBLEM” ARE YOU REFERRING TO AS BEING “MAJOR”? THE INCARCERATION BY THE “THOUSANDS” OF YOUNG BLACK MALES IS “A PROBLEM”. THE “SELF-GENOCIDE” BE COMMITTED “ONE AGAINST THE OTHER” IS “A PROBLEM”. AND THE “IGNORANCE” OF ALL THAT IS TAKING PLACE CONCERNING US AS “A PEOPLE” IS “A PROBLEM”. AND EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THOSE IS “MAJOR”. YET, THE ROOT CAUSE IS “IGNORANCE”! AFTER THAT, IS “DENIAL”.AND INDEED, AFTER THAT, IS AN “IN-BRED FEELING” THAT WE ARE “HELPLESS” TO DO ANYTHING FOR “OURSELVES” SO WE SIT AND WAIT FOR THINGS TO “WORK THEMSELVES OUT” ON THEIR OWN. AND THEY CANNOT AND THEY “WILL NOT”. SO UNLESS WE ARE “WILLING” TO DEAL WITH THE “REALITY” OF AFRICAN AMERICANS HERE IN AMERICA, NOTHING AT ALL SHALL GET BETTER. AND INDEED WE ARE “ALL WITNESSING” BLATANT ESCALATION OF THESE THINGS, RIGHT BEFORE OUR VERY EYES. EVEN SO, WE “SIT AND WAIT”.

  10. Danette Chavis August 30, 2011 at 11:54 pm #

    CANDY: YOU HAVE SAID, “WHAT EVERYONE IS OVER LOOKING, IS THAT HE ROBBED SOMEONE AS WELL AS BEAT HIM”. I CAN’T SPEAK FOR ANYONE ELSE BUT “MYSELF” ON THE MATTER AND “I” IN FACT AM “NOT” ADDRESSING “THE CRIME HE COMMITTED”. AND MY BASIS FOR HAVING DOING SO IS – NIETHER HAVE THE COURST! THEY HAVE ISSUED HIS SENTENCING BASED UPON A PLEA OF “NOT GUILTY”. AND THE “CRIME” HE COMMITTED, WAS OF “NO IMPORtANCE” TO THEM. BY THE ADNISSION OF “THE JUDGE” HE SENTENCED HIM BECAUSE HE “INSISTED HE WAS NOT GUILTY” DESPITE TWO WITNESSES WHO TESTIFIED HE IN FACT WAS. THEREFORE INDEED, DID HE EXACT THE AMOUNT OF SENTENCING UPON HIM, THAT HE DID. IT WAS THE “SOLE BASIS” THAT JUDGE GAVE FOR DOING SO. IN AS MUCH AS “HE IGNORED THE CRIME COMMITTED” WHY SHOULD “OTHERS” BE FAULTED FOR DOING THE SAME? BUT WAIT, HERE’S A “BETTER QUESTION” FOR YOU; WHY ISN’T “THAT JUDGE” CRITIZED FOR ISSUING A SENTENCE BASED UPON THE OBSERVANCE OF”THE RIGHT” TO PLEAD “INNOCENCE”?

  11. Bro. Charles August 31, 2011 at 1:31 am #

    Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the age of Coolorblindness–breaks it down as the new racial caste system in America. Teens like Anthony Stewart need dedicated mentors to work with them in terms of avoiding “systemic” entrapment, understanding the concept of black inferiority, media amorality and Afrocentrist history and culture.

    As a mentor and youth advocate in Buffalo, New York, I am challenging the school administrators and greater community to implement recommendations of The Council of Great City Schools. Amongst other considerations there is a call for more Black male mentors and counselors in school districts across the country to work with young Black males in helping them to graduate.

    The question or issue in this article should not be about whether Courts (Judges) are racist and certainly unfair. The facts are that we need to do more in our community to see that more of our young Black males receive a quality education and have at least one responsible adult (or mentor) in their lives. Dr Kunjufu says that too many of us Black men wont man-up, stand-up as mentors. Walking the talk, I’ve spent the last four years as a volunteer at a Charter school. My goal is to start a life-skills mentoring program for at-risk youth, with assistance from those who care about the future of our youth and community. Keep them out of the Criminal Courts and prisons. Pull them damn pants up too!

  12. candy August 31, 2011 at 2:49 am #

    So the crime should be ignored? They committed a crime. They victimized an old man for money. What if it was $700 or $1200 because he’d just cashed his pension check or his social security? The 7 cents isn’t the issue.

    A crime was committed. They went out purposely to commit a crime. They should be held responsible. They should be held accountable. They are old enough to know right from wrong and old enough to have to live with the consequences of their actions.

    Why is everyone so outraged about the sentencing? And not about the crime. Did the judge go to far? Maybe. But a ****CRIME**** was committed. Did the judge act with the letter of the law? Did he follow the sentencing guidelines that was set before him by law? I don’t know.

    But a crime was committed, the fact that they only got 7 cents is inconsequential. They intentionally set out to rob a person and as a result caused bodily harm to an old man by beating and kicking him.

    What ever happened to treating people with respect, treating elders/elderly with respect? What ever happened to respecting yourself and others? What ever happened to taking responsibility for your actions?

    We need to go back to the 3 R’s as my mom, dad and grandparents taught me and my siblings and cousins. Respect yourself, Respect others and take Responsibility for your actions.

    If they didn’t want to go to jail, or have to face the possibility of going to jail and having a record they should never have committed a crime. And I think that should be the focus. A crime was committed. How do we keep our young black men and women on a path to be a productive member of society instead of on the road to being criminals?

    • Black&Proud September 2, 2011 at 6:27 pm #

      Candy, that’s it, people are so caught up on if the punishment fits the crime AND IT DOES! They knocked a man down, beat him and robbed him. Nevermind all they got was 7 cents, that goes to show how petty they are for doing what they did. What if this man hit his head and died? Then it would have been a murder case. My grandfather is 73+ and if someone did that to him I wouldn’t be worried about how much money they got, my concern would be what they did to him. That’s the problem we can’t be concerned with what others are doing to us if we not concerned about what we are doing to us. Teach our youth to be responsible for their actions. Some of us need to get back to being parents, I see 10 year olds out at 10pm or what about the disrespectful kids that sashay their happy hips in the middle of the street when you’re trying to drive then look at you crazy…GET YOUR KIDS!! There is a lack of respect amongst our young people and if we don’t get’em…the courts will!

  13. Danette Chavis August 31, 2011 at 2:50 am #

    @BRO.CHARLES: IF NIETHER THE QUESTION NOR ISSUE IS RACISM WITHIN THE COURTS THEN INDEED “WHAT IS THE ISSUE”? FOR THE COURTS OF THE LAND ARE TO “UPHOLD THE LAW” AND IF IN FACT, THEY ARE “BIAS” AND “RACIST” IN THEIR JUDGEMENTS, OF WHAT GOOD SHALL THIS “MENTORING” AND “EDUCATION” BE, TO THESE YOUNG BLACK MEN? INDEED MENTORSHIP IS A KEY FACTOR IN BRINGING
    ABOUT “RESPONSIBILTY” IN THESE YOUNG BLACK MEN, HOWEVER “RESPONSIBILITY” OR THE LACK THEREOF, WAS NOT THE CAUSE FOR THE RACISM EXHIBITED WITHIN THE COURT ROOM. NIETHER IS POSSESSION OF A DEGREE. AND THOUGH THOSE WHO ENDEAVOR IN THESE THINGS ARE INDEED TO BE COMMENDED, IT IS NOT NOR SHOULD IT BE PERCEIVED TO BE “THE END OF A STRUGGLE”. FOR THE RACISM IN AMERICA WHICH IS BASED UPON “WHITE SUPREMACY” DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE BASED UPON “EDUCATION OR EMPLOYMENT”. THE RACISM THAT EXIST IS ACROSS ALL “CLASS” AND “LEVELS” OF AFRICAN AMERICANS. AND WE DECIEVE OURSELVES WHEN THINKING IT EXIST FOR ANY OTHER REASON, THEN THE FACT WE ARE “BLACK”.

    • Bro. Charles August 31, 2011 at 8:09 am #

      Sis. Danetta Chavis you are preaching to the choir in regards to racism and White supremacy in this country. My point is very simple. Whe young Black males understand the true nature and history of the racist criminal justice system et al –common sense should dictate that the young brothers not commit B.S. crimes like those of Anthony Stewart. He purposely exposed himself to the jurisdiction of the racist cagers of the system.

      Conversely when you have “innocent” young Black males fraudulently exposed to “systemic” judicial terrorism, then it’s time to protest by any means necessary and be prepared to possibly die for your rights and beliefs cause freedom ain’t free! By the way my sister, it’s nice to have these discussions in blogs about the racist judicial system but until we unite to change it by any means necessary–it is best to counsel the at-risk youth to avoid the commission of B.S. crimes that will subject them to the Court’s jurisdiction. Is that asking too much? I often counsel youth to think carefully before getting involved with illegal guns that will negate their priviledge to legally apply to own guns. Common sense!

  14. Danette Chavis August 31, 2011 at 3:14 am #

    @CANDY: YES, A CRIME WAS COMMITTED. BUT WHAT YOU FAIL TO REALIZE IS THAT “THE CRIME” WAS NOT THE BASIS FOR THE SENTENCING! THE “SENTENCE” WAS ISSUED TO “TEACH HIM A LESSON” FOR INSISTING IN HIS “INNOCENCE”. I DIDN’T SAY IT, THE “JUDGE” SAID IT. YET, ON THIS THREAD PEOPLE ARE TAKING EXCEPTION THAT A CRIME IS BEING “IGNORED” BY THOSE WHO HAVE “POStED” ON THIS THREAD, BUT SEE “NO WRONG” IN THE JUDGE – WHO HIMSELF “IGNORED THE CRIME”. PERHAPS HAD HE INDICATED THAT THE SENTENCE HE ISSUED WAS DUE TO A “DEPRAVED INDIFFERENCE TO LIFE AND OTHER PEOPLE’S PROPERTY” THEN PERHAPS MANY WOULD AGREE, THAT THE SENTENCING WAS “JUST” AND AGREE THAT PERHAPS HE’LL LEARN TO RESPECT OTHER PEOPLES PROPERTY AND THEIR LIFE. BUT THAT WAS NOT THE “BASIS” FOR THE SENTENCING IMPOSED. IT WAS BECAUSE THE YOUNGMAN INSISTED HE WAS “NOT GUILTY” ALTHOUGH TWO EYEWITNESSES SAID HE IN FACT WAS. SO THE QUESTION IS, WHY DO YOU NOT SEE FAULT – WITH THE JUDGES “IGNORANCE OF THE CRIME”?

  15. Travis Rashawn Ford August 31, 2011 at 6:50 am #

    Oh please, enough with this racism bullshit already. You want proof?: The White dude (can’t remember his name) had got 104 years in prison for mouthing off to a judge. I remember watching that on YouTube. The judicial system doesn’t care about race

  16. Danette Chavis August 31, 2011 at 10:52 am #

    @BRO.CHARLES: IF INDEED I’M “PREACHING TO THE CHOIR” IT IS BECAUSE THEY’VE BEEN SINGING THE “SAME OLE SONG” WONDERING WHY THEY WON’T “GET UP AND DANCE”! EDUCATION AND MENTORSHIP ARE INDEED NEEDED AND NECESSARY IF IT INDEED PROVIDES INDEPENDANCE, SELF-SUFFICENCY AND RESPONSIBILITY CONCERNING ONE’S OWN ACTIONS. IN NO SHAPE, FORM, OR FASHION DOES IT PREVENT FROM BEING “APPREHENDED” “FALSELY ACCUSED” AND “INCARCERATED” UNDERNEATH A JUDICIAL SYSTEM, WHICH IS RACIST AND BASED UPON “WHITE SUPREMACY”. AND WHILE SOME MAY CONDEMN THE ACTIONS OF THAT YOUNG MAN AS BEING “B.S.” AND BASED UPON THE LACK OF “COMMON SENSE” MAKING THEMSELVES “PURPOSELY OPEN” TO ATTACKS BY A RACIST SYSTEM – COMMON SENSE IS WHAT IS NEEDED FOR THOSE WHO INSIST “EDUCATION AND MENTORSHIP” SHALL REMEDY “THE CAUSE”! WITH ALL OUR EFFORTS AS “A PEOPLE” TO INSIST IN “EDUCATION” TO INSIST IN “NON-DISCRIMINATION” AND “EQUALITY UNDERNEATH THE LAW” IN WHAT SHAPE, FORM, OR FASHION, HAVE OUR CONDITIONS IMPROVED? WE ARE “DOCTORS” “LAWYERS” AND EXCEL IN NEARLY EVERY VENUE WE ENTER INTO. YET, WHAT HAS CHANGED CONCERNING US AS “A PEOPLE”? AND THOSE WHO HAVE OBTAINED A MEASURE OF SUCCESS ARE YET THEMSELVES SUBJECT TO THE SAME DISCRIMINATION AND RACISM AS “ALL OTHERS”. YET, THE PRESUMPTION REMAINS THAT “EDUCATION IS THE KEY”. NEEDED AND NECESSARY – YES! BUT “THE ANSWER”, NO! THEREFORE, TEACH AND MENTOR ALL YOU LIKE, BUT DO NOT DECEIVE YOURSELF INTO THINKING IT DOES ANYTHING TO “DIS-ARM” THE FORCES OF “WHITE SUPREMACY”. AND INDEED, “COMMON SENSE” SHOULD OF INFORMED YOU OF THAT. THEREFORE “EDUCATION” IS NOT THE “CURE ALL” FOR ALL THINGS.

    • Bro. Charles August 31, 2011 at 7:15 pm #

      WOW! Sis. Chavis, you just don’t get it. I agreed with youu that racism and White Supremacy is alive and well. Not just in our Court system. At no time did I maintain that “education” alone would solve the problem of racism in the Courts. My point is that untill so-called black leader/mis leaders are willing to confront, challenge and change this racist Judicial system by any means necessary–then it certainly would be wise and cost effective to mentor our youth to not voluntarily commit B.S. crimes that will bring them into the system to be branded felons and thus legally discriminated against under the New Jim Crow. You don’t seem to understand what I mean by “B.S. crimes” One example is when one Black youth shoots another for just looking at him the wrong way. Another would be if my son robs your son of his cell phone and a couple of dollars then gets caught up in the “racist” judicial system being adjudicated a felon. Many of our youth have no clue as to their cultural history, the effects of an amoral media and that the racist “system’ had reserved cages and a spot on the plantation for them even before they were born! My main point was that educated people such as yourself, have to do more than simply complain about the existence of racism in the Courts (elsewhere) but have to UNITE to work for true liberation by any means necessary. That includes one being prepared to give one’s life on behalf of the “struggle.” I noticed my dear sister that you misunderstood where I was coming from and tried to put words into my mouth but you were errily silent about standing up for change by any means necessary! Every day literally thousands more of our young Black males are being processed into the criminal justice system. Seems all you want to argue about is technical aspects of systemic racism in the Courts, when you should be busy supporting any community movement which seeks to uplift our at-risk youth and keep them out of the system. Especially those who would commit B.S. crimes against their own people. If we wait to save them while procrastinating about how to effectively deal with the racist courts then it will be too late as the majority will be classified as felons or DOA. That is all I have to say if you do not understand where i’m coming from. Shanti!

  17. Danette Chavis August 31, 2011 at 11:07 am #

    @TRAVIS: HOW HAS THE SENTENCING OF 1 WHITE MAN “WHOSE NAME YOU CAN’T REMEMBER” CONVINCED THAT “RACISM DOES NOT EXIST” WITHIN A JUDICIAL SYSTEM THAT HAS INCARCERATED “THOUSANDS UPON THOUSANDS” TO WHICH IT HAS ISSUED SENTENCES “ABOVE AND BEYOND” WHAT THEIR WHITE COUNTER-PARTS WOULD OF GOTTEN, FOR THE COMMISSION OF THE “SAME CRIME”?

  18. Danette Chavis August 31, 2011 at 11:36 am #

    WE CAN “TALK ABOUT IT” “BLOG” ABOUT IT “ARGUE AND DEBATE” ABOUT IT “ALL DAY LONG” WHILE SOME ABSOLUTELY “DENY IT” IN TOTAL. BUT THE REALITY IS; “WHITE SUPREMACY IS INDEED ENFORCED ACROSS NATION – TO OUR OWN DETRIMENT! IF YOU CHOOSE TO LIVE IN THE “ILLUSION OF INCLUSION” SO BE IT! IT WILL SERVE THEIR PURPOSE WELL.IF YOU CHOOSE TO BEAT ON A “DEAD HORSE” THAT THUS FAR HAS GOTTEN YOU “NO WHERE FAST” THEN GO AHEAD, FOR YOU ARE PRECISELY DOING WHAT THEY EXPECT YOU TO DO! THE VERY THINGS IN WHICH YOU TAUT AS BEING “NEEDED AND NECESSARY” ARE THE VERY THINGS THEY USE TO KEEP YOU “FIRMLY IN PLACE”. AND UNTIL WE “UNITE” AND COME INTO “ONE ACCORD” AS CONCERNING THE “ROOT CAUSE” OF OUR DESTRUCTION, THERE SHALL BE “NO PROGRESS” AND THERE SHALL BE “NO JUSTICE” AND THERE SHALL BE “NO FREEDOM”. INDEED “FREEDOM” IS “COSTLY” BUT THE PRICE YOU PAY WHILE BEING WITHOUT IT, IS “FAR MORE COSTLY”.

  19. Danette Chavis September 1, 2011 at 12:21 am #

    BRO.CHARLES: JUST BECAUSE I’M HERE WRITING ON THIS THREAD “BLOGGING” DOES NOT MEAN I HAVE NOT TAKEN A POSITION OR A STAND AGAINST THESE THINGS. HOW CAN I POST AND WRITE, UNLESS I UNDERSTAND THE DYNAMICS SURROUNDING THE ISSUE? INDEED, IN LIGHT OF THAT UNDERSTANDING, HAVE I WRITTEN. WITH THE INTENT OF ADVISING AND “INFORMING” OF THOSE THINGS WHICH SEEM TO ESCAPE THE ATTENTION OF THOSE WHO ALSO PARTAKE IN THESE ENDEAVORS. THEREFORE INDEED, DID I POINT OUT TO ONE INDIVIDUAL WHO COMPLAINED THAT ALL WERE “IGNORING THE CRIME COMMITTED” THAT THE “JUDGE HIMSELF” HAD ALSO DONE SO. AND THIS SCENARIO “PLAYS OVER AND OVER” IN OUR ATTEMPTS TO “LIBERATE OUR SELVES”- WHERE WE SEE ONLY THE FAULT THAT HAS BEEN “LAID AGAINST US”. BECAUSE OF THAT HAVE WE BEEN FIGHTING A “LOSING BATTLE”. WE CRITIZE AND “CONDEMN” ACCORDING TO THE ACCUSATION WAGED AGAINST US, AND TAKE NO THOUGHT AS TO “WHY” OR FROM “WHERE” THE ACCUSATION STEMS. IF YOU LOOK AT THE CRIME COMMITTED BY THE 15 YEAR OLD, CLEARLY HE DID NOT KNOW “ALL” HE WAS SUBJECTING HIMSELF TO. AND INDEED CLEAR, HE DID NOT “UNDERSTAND” ALL THE RAMIFICATIONS BEHIND IT. BUT NEVERTHELESS, HE INFACT “COMMITTED A CRIME”. ALL WHO HEAR OF IT WOULD SAY, “HE’S COMMITTED CRIME – THROW HIM IN JAIL AND TAKE AWAY THE KEY”. FEW WOULD SAY, “HE HIMSELF” IS A VICTIM OF A CRIME AND THE RESULTS OF THAT VICTIMIZATION “CAUSED HIS DEPRAVED STATE”. THE FOCUS SHALL BE ON THE “CRIME COMMITTED” AND WHATEVER IS DETERMINED CONCERNING HIM, WILL BE “APPLAUDED” AND “LAUDED” AS “JUST”. THEREFORE, I AM OF THE POSITION THAT YOU CANNOT “BLAME AND ACCUSE” WITHOUT TAKING IN THOSE FACTORS WHICH “CAUSED THE ACTION”. IF INDEED HE IS “GUILTY” THEN THOSE WHO “CAUSED THE ACTION” ARE “GUILTY” AS WELL. SO WHILE WE “CRITIZE” FOR THE ACT OF A CRIME, WE OUGHT “CRITICIZE THOSE WHO CAUSED IT”. AND IF INDEED “DEPENDENT” ON A SYSTEM TO “EDUCATE US” AND THROUGH “NEGLECT” “LACK OF FUNDS” OR WHATEVER THE REASON, THEY “FAIL TO DO SO” THEN WE HAVE BEEN “ROBBED” OF THE ABILITY TO BE “SELF-SUFFICIENT” “INDEPENDENT” “CONTRIBUTORS TO SOCIETY” AND LEFT, WITH “NO RECOURSE” FOR “OUR SURVIVAL”. THEREFORE, IS THERE “ANYTHING” A MAN WON’T DO, TO “SAVE HIS LIFE” AND THOSE OF HIS FAMILY? BUT THE “PREDICAMENT” THAT THEY HAVE BEEN PLACED IN, IS “NEVER” OF CONSIDERATION. REGARDLESS OF THE CIRCUMSTANCE, REGARDLESS OF THE PREDICAMENT, THE FOCUS IS AND HAS ALWAYS BEEN “ON THE CRIME COMMITTED”. AND BY THE THOUSANDS THEY ARE CARTED OFF TO PRISON, WHILE THOSE WHO “CAUSED” THAT PREDICAMENT “ESCAPE” ALL ACCUSATION AND SCRUTINY – WHILE “WE OURSELVES “BLAME” “JUDGE” AND “CONDEMN” DECLARING THAT “JUSTICE HAS BEEN SERVED”. THOSE WHO HAVE ASSESSED THE PROBLEM AND DETERMINED “LACK OF EDUCATION” TO BE A FACTOR IN THEIR INABILITY TO BE EMPLOYED (SUCH AS YOURSELF) HAVE ENDEAVORED TO “MEET THOSE NEEDS. AND INDEED, MY INTENTION IS NOT TO NEGATE THE NECESSITY OF EDUCATION BUT TO POINT OUT, THAT EDUCATION ALONE IS INSUFFICIENT. AND WHILE MOST MAY INDEED BE AWARE OF THIS, THE “PERCIEVED PERCEPTION” HAS BEEN THAT EDUCATION SHALL “SOLVE THE PROBLEM” WHEN IN FACT, WHAT IT DOES IS MAKES ONE PRIVY TO “A PROBLEM” THEY ARE UNABLE TO SOLVE. AND TAKES YOU “RIGHT BACK” TO SQUARE ONE, “WITH YOUR DIPLOMA IN HAND”. WELL THEN, SHOULD WE ADVISE “AGAINST EDUCATION”? ABSOLUTELY NOT! BUT WHILE EDUCATING, WE SHOULD ADVISE THAT IT, “PUTS ONE STEP CLOSER – NOT INSIDE THE DOOR”. THAT THERE BE “NO DISCOURAGEMENT” WHEN FACED WITH “OPPOSITION”. PERCEPTION IS “EVERYTHING” AND WHATEVER WAS PERCEIVED CONCERNING MY INTENTIONS, I HOPE I’VE CLEARED THAT UP. OH, AND BY THE WAY I MADE “NO MENTION” OF MY ACTIVITIES IN MY COMMUNITY BECAUSE I AM WRITING ON “A BLOG” AND DID NOT SEE THE NEED TO DO SO. ALSO, I BELIEVE THAT IT IS BETTER TO BE TAKEN FOR THE VALUE OF WHAT ONE HAS “TO SAY” RATHER THAN WHAT THEY’VE “DONE” OR WHAT “ORGANIZATION” THEY HAPPEN TO BE “AFFILIATED WITH”. BUT IF IT MAKES YOU FEEL BETTTER, I AM AN “ACTIVIST” AND I STAND “IN DEFENSE OF THE PEOPLE”. (IF YOU LIKE, YOU MAY “GOOGLE” ME -DANETTE CHAVIS, “IN DEFENSE OF THE PEOPLE”) INDEED, I FIGHT AGAINST “ALL INJUSTICES” POLICE BRUTALITY” IN PARTICULAR AND HAVE MADE “PUBLIC RECORD” OF MY CONTENTIONS CONCERNING THESE THINGS – FROM THE CITY COUNCIL IN NEW YORK CITY WHERE I RESIDE, TO THE DEPT. OF JUSTICE DOWN IN WASHINGTON. AND IN ADDITION TO THAT, I SERVED AS THE CHAIRPERSON FOR THE NIEGHBORHOOD ADVISORY BOARD #1, UNDER THE DEPT. OF YOUTH AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UNDER MAYOR MICHEAL BLOOMBURG, WHO GAVE US THE TASK OF ALLOCATNG COMMUNITY SERVICE BLOCK GRANTS (CSBG) FOR PROGRAMS AND SERVICES, EARMARKED FOR COMMUNITIES WHICH WERE DESIGNATED AS “NEIGHBORHOOD DEVELOMENT AREAS”. FOR TWO TERMS I SERVED IN THIS POSITION -FIRST “APPOINTED” THEN “ELECTED” AND REMAINED IN THIS POSITION, UNTIL I RELOCATED OUT OF THE DISTRICT. THEREFORE, IT IS BASED ON MY EXPERIENCES THAT I’VE TAKEN THE POSITION AND THE “STAND” THAT I’VE TAKEN. AND ONCE AGAIN, I HOPE I’VE CLEARED UP ANY MISUNDERSTANDING.

  20. JusticeEverywhere September 2, 2011 at 12:07 pm #

    Gooogle Harrison David, Columbia University student convicted for selling drugs on Campus. You will be amazed of the out right racism in our justice system and mind you this is NYC

  21. T September 2, 2011 at 12:37 pm #

    its not about the 7 cent HOWEVER yesterday i read a story about a teenager walking into a classroom and shooting a gay student in the back of the head while other students watched. the jury could not come to an agreement and it was a mistrial. also read and 2 white young boys (around this young man’s age) that killed a family (a mother and two of her children) while street racing. their sentence….. 90 days in jail and 6-8yrs probation. its about the injustice we face because of our skin color. this young man should be punished but it should be in line with similar cases. blacks are constantly receiving harsher sentences. the injustices we still face are sad to say the least…

  22. Ysugarcoat September 2, 2011 at 4:37 pm #

    I’m sorry but we can’t sit here and act like he is going to jail for only stealing 7 cents…he brutally assaulted an elderly man who just so happened to only have the sum of 7 measley cents on him. If he would have had $1,000 on him would that have made the verdict better to you all? No sympathy here…I think the punshiment fits the crime. He is getting punished for the assault.

  23. Williams September 2, 2011 at 5:36 pm #

    We can not continue to blame the system of being racist each time a person of color is sentence to what we say is unfair, we know that, we have to do better. We need to 1st look at ourselves. We as people of color already know we will not receive the same treatment of justice from the system that the white man receives. What this young man did was criminal, he beat & robbed someone & had a waepon. He robbed senior citizens, that in itself is terrible! It saddens me to think that you have lived a long & perhaps a hard struggling life to become senior citizens & some one decides to just take something from you, that hurts. And a weapon was used, whether real or not, the victims did not know it wasn’t real. They only got 7 cents, what if the weapon had been real, would they have used it becuse they only got 7 cents? We as people of color must remember that the system is not going to treat us fair, unfortunately, we have to always remember that and live our lives as such. FAIR…., of course not, but as long as we as people of color live in a world where we are treated differently from the white man, that’s the way it is. Regardless of color, we should all strive to be the best we can be, & RESPECT EVERYONE. People work hard for what they have & for someone to come along and take it from you, FRANKLY, THAT SUCKS!!!

  24. shehiplocki September 4, 2011 at 4:18 am #

    I read ” they knocked him to the ground’, kicked him and something else’, and they don’t deserve to spend at least two years behind bars? These young men are ruthless and disrespectful to authority figures, they have to learn the hard way.

    Right here in Wa State, a teenaged boy and his friends beat a man to death in downtown Seattle…the details missed me right now but the sentence was very light in spite of the victim was a popular person in the public forums…the young man is still causing breaking the law, assaulting people.

    There are even girl groups being involved in shootings and assaults.
    If these kids don’t want to listen to their parents then what is left, the court system.
    They threaten everyone’s security and well being, and I am very concerned.

  25. Donald F Guest September 4, 2011 at 6:29 am #

    Just-us triumphs again. The age of the assailant does not fit the crime. Given plea-bargaining tactics and the age and probable shock and anger of the victim, it is wrong to assume that the 15 year old took part in the crime based on either of the testimonies cited. At best he should have been tried as a juvenile offender. This tactic of confess or pay is the reason why so many plead guilty (often on the advise of public “offenders,”) when they are not guilty of the crime at all.

  26. Anon September 4, 2011 at 4:20 pm #

    #1. I’m Black. #2. I live in Detroit. #3. I’m raising a young son. #4. I’m tired of the criminal bullshit consistently and ever increasingly destroying the lives of struggling people; people just trying to survive in this screwed up economy and racist system. Being 15 years old is no excuse for beating and robbing anyone, especially the elderly. I don’t care what color he is, I don’t care that he only used a b.b. gun. He probably couldn’t get his hands on a real gun so he used what he had. Sure, kids make bad decisions and without proper guidance, they can make heinous ones, yet there are consequences for those decisions- and lets be clear… what he did was no mistake; it was a deliberate action. I’ve been robbed more than once, family members have been robbed, assaulted and raped, those perpetrators were all of the same race and none of them paid for those specific crimes. We Black adults (should) already know what we are up against in this racist system. We have a duty to teach our children what they face as well and what they can do to try and surmount those obstacles. I don’t condone the entire verdict but I do agree that he and his accomplice should do time for their actions, be it in a special program for 1st time young offenders or a lessor sentence, but he should do time regardless. We have to do what we can to embed into our children’s minds that committing criminal acts is not worth destroying someone’s life and destroying their own. If any good can come out of this story, let what happened to this young man be a lesson to those contemplating the same- or any criminal act.

  27. Reico September 5, 2011 at 4:00 pm #

    i agree with the many others who’ve posted regarding this story. The 15-year-old young man and his cohorts that committed this violent crime must be held fully responsible for their actions. To talk about him being rehabiltatable, reformable, etc may be true but he committed a violent crime against an innocent, defenseless senior citizen. What about the victim? What about the trauma they’ve endured and the trauma they’ll probably continue to endure (fear, mental anguish, physical injuries). I’m sorry, but I have ZERO sympathy for that young man. What if the victim of his crime had been one of your elderly relatives? Would you feel sympathy for him then? I damn sure wouldn’t. Do the crime, do the time, pay the price. Period.

  28. D.a.g September 5, 2011 at 7:00 pm #

    Although upon cusory review, the actions of the teens appears desperate; however, the Judge is required to interpret the law. Now, with afformetion actions of these teenagers being conclusive the only remaining question is does the sentence imposed by thejudge fit the crime? The fact is the judge is bound to interpret the law. The representative of the state (the prosecutor) was in agreement with the teen’s counsel to seek a sentence far less severe than which the judge chose to impose on this teen’s unwise behavior. In summary, the teen’s actions are clearly egregious; however, the judges sentencing is clearly life altering. Question, does the branding of this teenager as a felon for life visa-vis the adult judge warrant justice? Or is it a miscarriage of justice? Something the judge is sworn to uphold!

  29. CC September 5, 2011 at 8:10 pm #

    Candy i agree with you whole heartedly!!! Yes our judicial systtem is whacked and WE know it!!! so therefore we must work for what we want!!! Some young people say I’m not going to work at Mc Donalds or any other fast food restaurant, when i can make more money on the streets. When someoone make the conscious decison to commit a crime you suffer the consequences.

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