Justice for victims of violent crimes and their families

William T. Robinson, Jr.

William T. Robinson, Jr.

Brutal, heinous crimes are occurring with frequency in many major cities and small towns. Victimized, affected families are literally throwing their hands up in the air—often disgusted at what they see as light consequences or sentencing for the perpetrators of these horrendous malicious crimes. All too often, it seems more emphasis is put on advocating for the criminals guilty of vicious life-threatening assaults and murders than securing justice for violated victims or their families.

While our judicial system states everyone is presumed innocent until found guilty (which in practice is usually the exact opposite), there are some cases where existing evidence proves without a doubt that a person or group participated in cold, callous precipitated murder. We are referring to cases where there may be witnesses, video and audio evidence capturing the assault or murder, and abundant evidence substantiated by DNA. Yet significant time and money is spent trying to collaborate a known murderer’s innocence or outcome.

We are now encountering more cold and callous social paths generating no emotion for the brutal crimes they may have committed. Yet many people feel the law in many cases seems to give these perpetrators of violent crimes (especially murder) more consideration and lead way than their victims or their victim’s families and love ones. While non-violent crimes continue to be prevalent and undeniably wrong nonetheless, at least there is no physical abuse or loss of life.

During the quest for justice, surviving members of those brutally assaulted or murdered often feel they are abandoned and have no one truly advocating for true justice for their loved ones. This feeling seems even more evident in families who have lost love ones in highly profiled murder cases where it seem every consideration is given to the alleged murderer. In all fairness, one must realize that heinous, premeditated murders leave families without a father, mother, son, daughter, aunt, uncle, cousin, grandmother, grandfather or other significant other. The surviving loves ones must wrestle with the fact their loved one is forever gone, leaving an unimaginable void. Their laid-to-rest loved (ones unlike so many of their killers) will never be given a second chance or leniency.

Being a victim to a calculated, premeditated murder supersedes one’s race, sex, religion, social/economic status or disposition. The violators of such vicious crimes have no racial or ethnic boundaries, although attempts are made to make us think otherwise.One can only imagine that crime could possibly be curtailed if more emphasis were made on securing justice for the victims and their families. Justice should be impartial, and not be adjudicated depending on one’s race, sex, or social status. As it stands now, the lack of impartiality is one of the biggest factors inhibiting true justice in our country.

One must understand that even a crime such as aggravated robbery leaves its victim with physical and emotional scars that never fully diminish. The surviving victims of assaults as well as home robberies or burglaries are never the same—many times left wrestling with acquired insecurities, fears, and trust toward others. An intuitive and inherent trust and love for others may be lost resulting in a need for extensive counseling. You can never come close to imagining the pain, suffering and hurt of those who have lost a loved one to murder, especially unnecessary, malicious, cold blooded, premeditated murder.

Our society seems to dwell on redemption and rehabilitation for many of those found guilty of heinous crimes especially murder, while expecting the families of the victims to pray for and forgive the criminal and to go on with their lives—as if the void in their lives is acceptable. Make no mistake, people are human and make mistakes and in most cases should be given a second chance. But when you have those who have been given numerous chances and continue to take advantage and disrespect the system advocating for them, then perhaps the judicial system should adhere to harsher measures.

Like it or not, we have ruthless, incorrigible, sociopathic killers within our criminal penal system who get something their victims have been denied: life. While imprisoned, they get three meals and a cot. They are given basic human rights their victims can never enjoy. It is easy to dwell on forgiveness, but there should be dire consequences that may act as deterrence for those who consider taking someone’s life. In life, there are consequences for the choices you make; therefore, you should think deep and long before you act. Hopefully if we are lucky, most of us will never lose a loved one to murder and be subjected to the unimaginable pain and suffering that occurs—as well as the praying and hoping that true justice is served.