Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Mychal Bell's Case to be heard by Juvenile Court


'Jena 6' teen's case to be heard in juvenile court, governor says

BATON ROUGE, Louisiana (CNN) -- The case of Mychal Bell, a black teenager accused of beating a white classmate in Jena, Louisiana, will be heard in juvenile court, Louisiana's governor announced Wednesday.

Mychal Bell, 17, is accused with five others of beating Justin Barker in a school fight.

Gov. Kathleen Blanco said that she discussed Bell's case with LaSalle Parish District Attorney Reed Walters on Wednesday, and that Walters agreed not to challenge a state appeals court ruling that dismissed Bell's battery and conspiracy convictions.

The court ruled that Bell, who was 16 at the time of the beating, should have been tried in juvenile court instead of having the case transferred to adult court.

Blanco made the announcement with civil rights leaders Martin Luther King III and Al Sharpton.

Last week, they led about 15,000 marchers to Jena, a town of 3,000, to protest how authorities handled the cases of Bell and five other black teens accused of beating white high school student Justin Barker.

Many said they are angry the students, dubbed the "Jena 6," are being treated more harshly than three white students who hung nooses from an oak tree on high school property.

The white students were suspended from school but did not face criminal charges. The protesters say they should have been charged with a hate crime.

Prosecutors originally charged all six black students with second-degree attempted murder and conspiracy

The black students now face charges of aggravated second-degree battery and conspiracy in the schoolyard beating.

The altercation was the culmination of racially tense events in the town, including two fights sparked by the hanging of the nooses.

CNN's Eric Marrapodi contributed to this report.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am appalled by this entire Jena subject. On the one hand you have students who insult the black race through disgusting comments and behaviors. On the other have students who physically and criminally inflict bodily injury on a member of another race. BOTH are wrong.. but let’s face it.. the system recognizes the severity of each and every crime that occurs and applies the right amount of justice to fit the bill.
This was created out of unforgivable acts..but to take vigilante justice against another person ..bringing them close to death.. is even more unforgivable.
Most whites I have spoken with are appalled by the behavior of the whites in Jena.. but even more appalled that the blacks chose to take justice into their own hands and deliver their own choice of punishment.
THEN you have the TYPICAL scenario where civil rights leaders Martin Luther King III and Al Sharpton come running to establish a platform. The platform has been questionable in the past and is definitely questionable in this case. The platform has changed.. and their arguments are becoming historic in nature.
Blacks are afforded the same rights and luxuries as the whites. I am surrounded by successful, respected black members of our community. I am also surrounded by poverty stricken whites. The choice to succeed in life is not left to opportunity but to the individual desire and drive within each of us. It is time to be comfortable in our own skin.
I believe that change is in order in Jena.. but I also believe that marches in a Jena only aggravate a volatile situation. This is a matter for the court.. not a platform. This is a matter for the school board.. not a platform. This is a matter within families.. not a platform. This is not a divided issue.. blacks.. whites.. Hispanics.. we all feel that this situation deserves swift justice through proper channels. Tolerance.. empathy.. love... brotherhood... these are things that we instill in our children. Obviously.. the parents involved in this situation miserably FAILED their children and society. The parents should be held as accountable as the children. It all starts at home...children learn what they live. If children are grow up with racist parents..they will develop those same lowly qualities. If children grow up with violence then they develop those lowly qualities.
This is not a national issue. This is upbringing! None of these individuals -BLACK OR WHITE- reflect my views or social beliefs. They are all under one God..they are all under the laws of our land..they are all sons..daughters. THEY each made choices.
Think about this… a type of “shoe on the other foot” reflection..
The whites should unite...march against the savage beating of a member of our race. As a matter of fact.. we should march against anything and everything we feel insults our race and heritage. Where is our NAACP?? If we created a NAAWP... could you imagine the outcry that would be shouted from the good Rev.'s and Al's platform then?? It is a fact that minorities and women in this country obtain benefits unavailable to those of a different race or gender. (I am a woman by the way). Progress brings about balance? Or does it? I do know that I love my country …and it’s citizens who treat me with love and matter their color or nationality.
GET real.. my family embraces the black race. My son is the only white member of an all black football team. His participation was voluntary and the community center he plays for is in a neighboring town. My views are not based on race..they are based on moral decency and respect for the judicial system of our country.
It is time to remove the race card and treat all of the Jena participants in a manner that is within the fullest extent of the applicable laws. If you hung a noose.. you should suffer a consequence. If you beat a person in a criminal should be prosecuted to the fullest extent under applicable laws.

Read this excerpt from a news story ... SLOWLY…take in the information.. understand what is dividing the issue..proper JUSTICE.

"Last week, they led about 15,000 marchers to Jena, a town of 3,000, to protest how authorities handled the cases of Bell and five other black teens accused of beating white high school student Justin Barker."

"Many said they are angry the students, dubbed the "Jena 6," are being treated more harshly than three white students who hung nooses from an oak tree on high school property."
SEE… each side is angry… seeking justice….and that is what the community should get..EQUAL JUSTICE UNDER THE LAW.
I do not feel this is a racial issue for the nation. This is a single town corrupt from a lack of discipline..morals..standards..and proper upbringing. It is also a town that needs to establish a more reliable and stringent system of behavioral correction within its schools.
This can stop today… all that it takes is morals, unity, values, and tolerance…NOT just tolerance…acceptance. We all bleed red…we all shed tears..we all have hearts and minds. This world would be a boring place if we all looked the same..had the same accent..the same desires and needs. Of course…Hitler would thrive in that environment … wouldn’t he!
I would also like to say a quick comment to the white students in Jena…
We are with you in your desire to seek justice… however…we do not stand with your hate and racial discrimination. Your ideas seem historically back woods and are shunned by the majority of your race. If you ever desire to move from Jena…your ideals will not survive elsewhere and fact…will be the outsiders wherever you go. Find it in your heart to change…catch up with the rest of the world.
To the black students in Jena….
I understand your pain…and your desire for justice…and share your thoughts that racism is unacceptable. I do not share the thought that personal vengeance or justice is the answer. Violence is a disease that spreads hate.

It starts at home…. Stop the cycle.
Seek justice…not hate.