Crutchfield Probation Shows Two-Tiered Justice System - And Response

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Well, I guess there truly is a two-tiered justice system - one for lawyers caught taking a bribe and one for the rest of us.

Is anyone really surprised that Ward Crutchfield gets off with a six-month home confinement and a two-year probation. Oh, and I forgot, a $3,000 fine for taking a $3,000 bribe (or excuse me, a gratuity).

At least the Judge could have made it a $4,000 fine to send a message to future state legislators that if you do get caught it will cost you a little money.

I see Sen. Crutchfield apologized for making "a" mistake. Does anyone seriously think that a Legislator who first went to Nashville in 1957 suddenly decides to take his first bribe (or excuse me, gratuity) 46 years later? If you do, I have a bridge in Brooklyn you may be interested in.

And you wonder why people have given up on both the legislative and judicial systems in our country.

Douglas Jones
Chattanooga

* * *

Do I have this story right? Various politicians get caught in the Tennesse Waltz. At least one admitted what he had done, spared the taxpayers any further expense of preparation for trial, etc. I think he got a year in prison.

Crutchfield delayed, claimed he had done nothing wrong, cost the taxpayers by requiring the government to prepare for trial, etc. Then, at the last hour, Mr. Crutchfield admits he was guilty. And, he gets probation!

Our judicial system is truly messed up.

Jerry Yates

* * *

Give me a break. Ward Crutchfield disgraced his office and defrauded the citizens of Hamilton County. He was caught red-handed taking a bribe. The punishment? No jail time, just probation. And why did all the African-American criminals caught up in the same wrong-doing go to jail? Why the double standard?

Not only did Gratuity Ward cost the taxpayers money by fighting the charges, but he cost us money (I belieive it was over $40,000) to have a special election because of his forced resignation.

Perhaps the people wanting Marti Rutherford to repay her salary should go after Ward. At least Marti wasn't trying to fatten her pocket and sell her votes.

Robert Purcell

* * *

It was, as Judge Breen said, a "sad day". It was a very sad day indeed for Tennessee justice when Crutchfield was given a light slap on the wrist while his fellow crooks, who were much less well connected, received prison terms.

When Judge Breen spoke of Crutchfield's good character one can only hope that he was speaking of his public character since Crutchfield showed himself to be a totally different character when he thought he would not be found out. We are left to wonder how many other "mistakes" he may have made while in a position of public trust.

Homer Goins
homergoins@comcast .net


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