An injustice was done this week to the people of Cook County that should not be repeated. And we deserve to know why.
Two drunk drivers in Brookfield deliberately ran down bicyclists last year, and both got off with sentences that were totally inadequate in light of the violent nature of their crimes.
One friend raises some good questions. Is the judge an idiot who was fully responsible for the light sentence? Did the prosecuting attorney negotiate to take the easy way out and avoid a trial, tying the hands of the judge? Did the defense attorney bribe somebody?
And I add: Is there a mandatory minimum sentence for this type of incident? I suspect that there isn't.
The Active Transportation is spearheading a letter writing campaign to Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez, asking for answers and for more appropriate prosecution of future cases. The link above gives an e-mail and snail mail address and suggested letter text.
I'm also trying to find out whether there is any mandatory minimum for vehicular assault. I will post an update when I find out.
If there isn't any minimum, I would strongly encourage you to write to your state legislators urging them to introduce mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines that are appropriate to the violent nature of this type of crime.
Please take a minute to send an e-mail, fax or letter to Anita Alvarez. It's worth a few minutes of your time to work for safer road conditions in Cook County for cyclists and pedestrians.