Sunday, July 23, 2006

Three Strikes and You Are Out - How About 155 Strikes and Still Swinging?

Larry West is the winner of the Shelby County Recidivism Sweepstakes, as far as I can tell. He has been arrested 153 times since January 29, 1983 in the General Sessions Courts and had two more cases in Criminal Court for Armed Robbery and felony theft. He probably has more charges that aren't on the computer, not to mention his juvenile record. I attended Kingsbury High School where he also sometimes showed up, so I know more about him than I would normally. Good old Kingsbury, we're leading the way once more!

Anyway, Larry has been arrested over 155 times since he started down the path he chose. Here are the number of times he was arrested and wound up in General Sessions Court:

37 PUBLIC INTOXICATION
30 CRIMINAL TRESPASS
28 DISORDERLY CONDUCT
15 PUBLIC DRUNKENESS
6 DISTURBANCE OF PEACE
6 VIOLATION OF PROBATION M
4 ASSAULT M
3 CONTEMPT OF COURT-GENERAL LAW
3 PETIT LARCENY
3 SHOPLIFTING M
3 THEFT OF PROPERTY $500 OR LESS
2 REFUSAL TO SUBMIT TO BAC TEST
1 AGG CRIM TRESPASS
1 ASSAULT & BATTERY
1 ASSAULT-BODILY HARM
1 ATTEMPT TO COMMIT FELONY
1 CRIMINAL ATTEMPT FELONY
1 EVADING ARREST
1 INDECENT EXPOSURE
1 INDECENT EXPOSURE M
1 MALICIOUS MISCHIEF
1 POSSESSION OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCEM
1 RESISTING OFFICIAL DETENTION
1 THEFT OF PROPERTY OVER $500
1 THEFT OF SERVICES $500 OR LESS
1 ARMED ROBBERY

If you are interested in looking into some of these citizens you can take the RNI number and search for the case information on the General Sessions and Criminal Court Clerk's website. The link is here Just pick General Sessions, then scroll the listbox down on the left pane to Arrest by RNI. Click that and enter an RNI number in the space provided below and click go. The results will show in the rightmost frame.

*Note*
An RNI number is supposed to be a unique number that has been linked via fingerprints to the individual. Therefore, no matter what name a person comes to jail under, the AFIS computer and technicians will "link" that set of fingerprints to the individual.

Just for fun, here is a list of RNI numbers you might want to research. These people have all been arrested more than 100 times:

No RNI#
154 11417
139 10857
137 2521
133 42884
132 42936
126 36947
124 21545
122 37048
120 105046
120 14175
114 100718
112 38356
111 4361
110 11018
104 21209
104 40902

I believe we, in the Criminal Justice field, need to place a higher priority on these type offenders. The "interventions" that we are using are not having the intended effect. There is a group of over 15,000 people in the mid south who have been arrested 10 times or more. They account for over 250,000 arrests. The cost of dealing with that group is mind boggling. If we take a round figure of $100.00 per day and only allow for one day per arrest, which is way short of the actual number, the cost is 25 million dollars. Considering the police officers, vehicles, equipment, the jailers, the infrastructure,etc. The cost per arrest could be as hish as $500.00 per event. That would mean this group has cost the taxpayers over $125 Million.

I believe the correct way to deal with these people is to use a form of progressive punishment. When a person has been arrested 10 times or more, they have demonstrated they don't care about rules and regulations. I believe we need to implement some Psychology, in the form of Behavior Modification. I call it the "hot plate" approach to law enforcement. If the punishment intensifies with each arrest, at some point it will extinguish the negative behavior. The current system is not worried about changing behavior, or keeping the citizenry safe, they are worried about maintaining an empty jail.

5 comments:

Offcer Allen said...

I love me some Larry Wayne West.
I'm perversely proud to have arrested The Legend at least three tiems. I've always found him engaging, witty, and possessing a beautiful singing voice.
While Larry may not always be fully cognizant of his surroundings, there's no arguing with the spirit of his oft shouted battle cry, "You aint gonna take the life of Larry Wayne West!"
Indeedm Larry Wayne West. Indeed.

Anonymous said...

Does Shelby County have a system to where the public can view mugshots of those who have been in jail?

Thanks.

John Harvey said...

None that I am aware of. I wrote one that the cops and clerks and other access, but they wouldn't let me put one up for the public. I tried! If they are in jail, the mugshot is there, or if there is a warrant, there may be one. Otherwise, the "powers that be" don't want you to be able to id someone who has been arrested without jumping through a bunch of hoops. Of course, that may have something to do with the fact that their sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, etc. are in that group. Actually, that is most probably the only reason.

Oh yeah, you might also check the sexual offender registry.

kayla said...

i am also a kingsbury alumni and have been to jail once my whole life for demestic violence and simple assualt thank god the charges were dropped and explunged but i must say it is not fun i wouldnt want to be in jail that much hell i dont ever want to go back however to some it is like home wow says alot for kingsbury huh.

John Harvey said...

Kayla, I guess that can happen. Kingsbury had a lot of good people, and some bad. Nobody is perfect - I could cite a few other "flawed" people like, Moses, David, Paul, etc in the Bible. Everyone makes mistakes. Hopefully, we learn from them and grow!