I have long maintained that the majority of crime is committed by a minority of people. Crime, like so many other human endeavors, seems to follow the 80-20 rule. The 80-20 rule, as stated for group activities like work, church and charitable work, is that 80% of the work is done by 20% of the people, and conversely, 80% of the people do 20% of the work. So, in crime, a small percentage of people commit the bulk of the crime.
Now, some of the proverbial 20% of criminals are people are the creme de la creme of bad guys--smart, sociopathic folks who are extremely hard to catch. And some of the 20% are like this guy, Marlyn Standifer, who for some reason have just managed to avoid being nailed to the wall by the prosecutor's office. KCTV 5 told this creep-o's story, complete with a list of his rap sheet. http://www.kctv5.com/story/23521240/home-invasion-suspect-just-released-from-prison
This is not uncommon that people with a murder rap are released from our jails and prisons, having not even served a full sentence. However, in this situation, what is more troubling is the lack of heart and strength from the prosecutor's office. We see this in other crimes, when a 5 time DUI loser is set loose to drink and drive again. How many times have we heard of such a person going on to kill someone with a car.
It may be time to clean house in the Jackson County Prosecutor's office, time to find someone who will make it worth while for witnesses to crime to take the time and risk to testify in court to facilitate a conviction. A prosecution that will make it worthwhile for police to track down and arrest these repeat offenders.
We seem to have an ambivalence about what prison is for, if it is for punishment, rehab or deterrence. One thing is true: when violent criminals are in prison, their ability to commit violent crimes is reduced almost to nil. Let's put more violent offenders behind bars for good; we know they will not use other citizens as human shields to press their criminal agendas.
Post Script: While going to the KCTV web site to grab the link to the story about the repeat offender that I had read earlier, I noticed this story posted now. http://www.kctv5.com/story/23528965/jackson-county-prosecutor-does-more-than-just-put-criminals-away Did the prosecutor threaten KCTV behind the scenes because of the previous story? My reaction to the title was immediate and visceral: Just put the damn criminals away, Ms. Baker!!