In 2022 people are getting released left and right for crimes that should be seeing them locked up without bail while they await trial. Even when found guilty, many have been given their freedom, only serving probation to answer for their crimes. The more heinous crimes are still being given that treatment, but not always. Instead many receive lighter sentences or are released early, because they learned their lesson, or simply to make room in the jails.
However, back in 1997 judges and law enforcement didn’t have their hands bound by leftist policies. Instead, they were free to do what was needed to keep the people safe and to ensure criminals received the justice the Sixth and Seventh Amendments guarantee them. For people like Michael Carneal, thankfully the old justice system is in place.
Back in 1997, Carneal decided to kill three students and wound five others in the lobby of Heath High School. Stealing the pistol from his neighbor, the 14-year-old listened to the voices in his head and opened fire on a group gathered for a prayer circle before school, just as they had each morning.
When it came time for the trial, people showed up in droves, and they were ready to see justice served for their loved ones. Back in 1997, the sentencing guidelines were much different than they are today, and this allowed him to get a chance for freedom again. Being sentenced to life with a possibility of parole after 25 years, Carneal had an opportunity to get back out there.
Looking over his file though, there was no prayer that was going to happen.
During the trial for release, Carneal stated he had last heard voices in his head a couple of days before, telling him to jump off the stairs. Parole Board Chair Ladeidra Jones informed him that no matter how much good he thought he could do in the world if released, even with medication his mental health prognosis is “poor” and his frequent experiences with “paranoid thoughts with violent visual imagery,” pose a danger to himself and everyone around him.
When someone is still having these kinds of problems, even after receiving serious medication and treatment, there is something very wrong going on. Thankfully the state now realizes that. One of their options was to give him another chance at parole in 10 years, and thankfully the state of Kentucky was not going to allow that to happen.
The surviving victims of his shooting rampage as well as family members of those who were killed appeared before the court to ensure justice was served. Meanwhile, Carneal was speaking by videoconference from the Kentucky State Reformatory in La Grange. During the hearing, he also apologized to his victims, including the entire tight-knit community of Heath, just outside of Paducah.
He admitted that the shooting was from immaturity and his mental health, but nothing justified what he did. He also acknowledged that it was completely unjustified, but at another point also made the case for being released. Making claims of staying with his parents and promises that he would continue treatment and remain on his medications just were not enough for the parole board, and certainly were not enough for the family members of his victims.
It’s good to see that the liberal agenda of giving everyone multiple chances hasn’t caught up with school shooters, and those with mental health problems. The fact that they are keeping people’s feet to the fire and making sure they pay for what they have done is exactly what America needs now more than ever.