SALT LAKE CITY — A teenager charged with killing a Utah soccer referee because he didn't like the man's call during a game pleaded guilty Monday to a charge of homicide by assault in a case that brought new attention to the issue of violence and sportsmanship in athletics.
The plea deal was hashed out between the teen's attorneys and prosecutors as the judge planned to hear testimony to decide if the 17-year-old suspect would be tried in juvenile or adult court. Under the deal, prosecutors agreed to keep the case in juvenile court. ...
See the whole article here, courtesy of the HuffPo.
Kicking Back Comments: The title comes from the NYT article of same fame that can be found here. It was the best way I could think of to focus the mind on what happened here.
Here is another, this admitted murderers sentence is a maximum of just over 3 years.
Biggest loser in this case is the Portillio family, who lost a husband and father. (see here for video)
Biggest chicken $h*t in this case is Patricia Cassell, ADA for Salt Lake County, on two levels.
First, is having the gall to say the plea deal struck is fair. Fair to who Patty? To the 17 year and 9 month old who killed an innocent man? Fair to the DA's office who took the easy way out and got a plea? Fair to the Portillio family somehow to (in my own words) "end their suffering?"
Second, is the DA's office going back on their statement they were going to have this admitted murderer tried as an adult. They took the easy way out and got the "quick win." Gotta make those numbers look good .. getting ready for the bench and all following in her husbands footsteps. Right?
Who really knows. Plea deals happen every day, all the time. Lets not forget however, it is a quid pro quo. In exchange for his guilty plea, the murderer has received only 3 years maximum. Granted the sentencing guidelines would call for only another 2 if tried as an adult, but for my money Patty, do the leg work, and get the additional 2 years. But it's so expensive to have a trial you say, tax payer dollars and all ... well then have the guts to say that to the press and Mr. Portillio's family when asked why juvenile court was the venue. Don't just shrug and say "... it would have only been another two years ..."
What amazing empathy from the ADA to the Portillio family.
Now I'll go out of my way to say that there is nothing improprietous on its face that seems to be going on here, it is however a stunning reversal for the DA for a serious crime.
Maybe I'm tainted because I expect the DA to prosecute the crime to the full extent of the law without short changing the investigative process in actually getting the necessary evidence to punish this person for what he did.
Maybe I am just so taken with the story of Matthew Cordle who killed a man, yet had the courage to admit what he did, even before he was charged, and accept his punishment for it. Punishment he deserves for killing a man.
No such honor in this case, from the criminal, or those who were responsible for prosecuting the crime.
There is one loose end however ... does US Soccer know, and is this killer now on a "no fly list" with them? I would hope a proactive lifetime ban is now in effect for this individual.
If not, shame on US Soccer.