There Must Be No More CarliesIs naming a law after a murdered child the only way to keep criminals in jail?
Outrage. Pure and simple outrage. Outrage at the need to legislate common sense. That's what parents all over the country are feeling in response to Carlie Brucia's avoidable death in Sarasota.
The person accused of her abduction, rape and murder is Joseph P. Smith, a career criminal who should have spent 43 years in jail for crimes he committed before being charged with this one. Instead he served 13 months. If he is convicted, every person who allowed him to slip through the cracks will have Carlie's blood on their hands.
Like the parents of Adam Walsh, Polly Klaas, Megan Kanka, Molly Bish, Danielle Van Dam and Amber Hagerman, Joe Brucia, Carlie's dad, finds himself being an activist. He is determined to do whatever it takes to keep career criminals and sex offenders behind bars - forever.
That means passing another law.
Carlie's Law, as it will be called during its journey through the state and federal processes, will seek to legislate common sense. It will endeavor to stop the revolving door that has become our parole and probation system. No longer can the excuse ``it costs too much to keep them in jail'' be viable. The cost of human life has already exceeded any tangible cost.
Amber Alert. Megan's Law. Amy's Law. Levi's Call. Code Adam. The list goes on, and so do the questions:
Why are lawyers playing a chess game, manipulating the system and allowing dangerous criminals to roam the streets?
Why do lawyers plea-bargain for these criminals? Is the goal to let more of them out of jail?
Why are judges reluctant to enforce parole statutes?
Why do judges impose less than the maximum sentence on sex offenders? Are they afraid of overcrowding the jails but not afraid of overcrowding the streets with sex offenders and other felons?
So now parents take up the effort, yet again, to challenge a system that denies justice to victims. We have more laws protecting the rights of criminals than we do protecting their victims and potential victims. That is about to change. Parents have an impressive track record. Parents are the reason the media participate in the Amber Alert system. Parents are the reason you now know if a sex offender is living next door to you.
As a Florida sheriff's deputy said to me during a recent child safety event: ``I never thought I'd see the day when we would be posting pictures of sex offenders on the Internet. Never underestimate the power of angry parents.''
Parents vote, and when they vote as a group, their voice cannot be ignored. If the current legislators, state attorneys and judges will not get this done, parents will elect those who can get it done.
We are partners with Joe Brucia in distributing information about this legislation. As the legislation is drafted, it will be posted for review and discussion. Intense letter writing campaigns are planned. Names of those who support and oppose the effort will be listed with contact information.
This is an election year. I speak to parents, legislators, law enforcement officials and media executives all over the country. Never before have I seen this level of anger at a system that failed Carlie Brucia. As it stands now, it has also failed the next child rape/murder victim. We just don't know yet who the next child is.
There Must Be No More Carlies, Carlies Article by: Linda Spagnoli Linda Spagnoli is director of communications for CodeAmber.org, which posts Amber Alerts viewed on more than 120,000 Web sites across the country and Canada.
More Information On Charlie's Law >Charlie"s Law | The Charlie Gard Foundation
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