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Published: Tuesday, 7/19/2005

Punishing violent predators

As I read about the ordeal that 8-year-old Shasta Groene and her brother Dylan went through, I became angered.

Joseph Duncan, the man who killed her family and molested Shasta and her brother, had a record of violently raping and torturing dozens of others. So why was this man on the streets to begin with?

He had raped 13 children by the time he turned 16 years old, and what did the state do? It put him in a "sex offender program," from which he was eventually expelled. He then served 14 years of a 20-year sentence. He was set loose to roam the streets and prey on young children such as Shasta and Dylan.

What is wrong with our state and national judicial systems? Why aren't our politicians protecting us from these violent predators? Is there any convincing evidence that serious sex offenders can be rehabilitated?

Why is it that the only way people can be put away for life is if they kill the victim in addition to raping them?

If that man had been sent to prison for life early on, dozens of people would have been spared a horrible, life-altering experience. The law needs to be changed to put rapists and child molesters away for life. As long as they are free, the rest of us are not.

Wendy Fournier

Perrysburg

Did I read that right that Opal Covey is now running for mayor? Is this the same Opal Covey who, several years ago, was convicted of animal cruelty for housing some 400 animals in filthy neglectful conditions in her so-called thrift store? Does anyone besides me see something seriously wrong with her running for mayor? As I recall, she was quoted as saying that she loved her animals dearly. She now says the same about Toledo, so what exactly does that mean?

Monica Birsen

Rudolph, Ohio

A July 7 Forum contributor wrote an eight- or nine-paragraph opinion on all the things Americans have done to Muslims to cause terrorism.

From what I've read, they only want one thing. Muslim terrorists, and the key word is terrorist, want you and me dead, no matter the cost.

Perhaps the gentleman can find them a counselor.

Dave Bilbrey

Genoa

So the emerald ash borer is on the move here in Ohio. No wonder. In my unprofessional opinion, there could have been a better plan in place to deal with this infestation instead of decimating thousands of ash trees by clear-cutting.

Instead, why not leave the infected trees standing to provide a stopping point for the bugs, then cut a swath from the perimeter to contain them? This plan certainly couldn't have failed any more than the present policy that is being pursued.

Suzanne Ricci

Seaman Street

Because the City of Toledo has prevailed in its eminent domain appeal for Jeep expansion, now is the time to step up to the plate and do an "eminent domain" seizure on the Sports Arena and riverfront areas. Then kick-start the voter-approved Marina District.

Seems like a no-brainer.

CARL SCHLIESSER

Oregon



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