In recent days it has become clear that the police investigation surrounding the April 20th death of Phillip Danner missed the real story by a mile. The police only turned up a few fragments of truth; whatever they needed to glue these fragments together into a larger picture they either guessed at, fabricated, or misrepresented. As a result, all the proceedings of the Kosciusko County courts—the April 30th waiver hearing and the sentencing hearings in September (for 15-year-old Colt Lundy) and January (for 12-year-old Paul Henry Gingerich)—were predicated on an absence of information and outright falsehoods.
Thanks to information provided to us by the Guardians, Paul Henry is temporarily safe at the Pendleton youth prison; however at the Wabash Valley adult prison where Colt is being held, the story is more disturbing. Colt’s treatment within Indiana’s adult corrections system includes barbaric practices which verge on torture. I cannot shake the thought that Kosciusko County Judge Rex Reed specified that both boys were to have served their sentences in this medieval hell hole.
It brings new meaning to the idea of “blind justice.” Not only were the judges’ decisions based on blindness to the true facts in the case, but blindness to the morality of how a just and civilized society should deal with its children who become involved in serious crimes.
I am alarmed, astonished, and ashamed.
I am alarmed that any state in our nation can get away with placing children in harm’s way in institutions where they are at risk of rape, physical violence, and institutional abuse comparable to the stories we hear about the prison system operated by Himmler’s SS.
I am astonished that in a very short time we have been able to uncover the truth that was missed or ignored by the police and not questioned by the Kosciusko County judges.
And I am ashamed that this is happening in my home state of Indiana where my own experiences as a child growing up were filled with advantages that were as great as the injustices imposed on Colt and Paul Henry are abysmal.
Groove of the Day