Monday, June 11, 2007

Wilson orders Wilson freed in bizarre Georgia case

The New York Times reports a ruling in the Georgia case where a 17-year-old boy has served over two years of a ten year sentence for allowing a 15-year-old girl to have oral sex with him.

Judge Thomas Wilson ordered the young man, whose name is also Wilson, freed.

Brenda Goodman wrote, "In granting Mr. Wilson’s habeas corpus petition, Judge Wilson wrote that it would be a “grave miscarriage of justice” for Mr. Wilson to be kept in prison for the remaining eight years of his sentence.

“'If this Court, or any court, cannot recognize the injustice of what has occurred here, then our court system has lost sight of the goal our judicial system has always strived to accomplish: Justice being served in a fair and equal manner,' he wrote in the order granting release."

But politicians in Georgia refused to accept the judge's ruling. Thurbert E. Baker, the Georgia attorney general, filed a Notice of Appeal, and the local district attorney is keeping the young man in prison.

Since both people involved in the sex act were minors, some might think it odd that the courts did not give them both the same sentence. Others might think that this case is entirely about race, since the boy was black and the girl was white. I suppose we've seen some progress in the past fifty years. I prefer the injustice of today to the injustice meted out in the south fifty years ago, but sometimes I think human beings are awfully slow to change their ways. Our justice system has a long way to go.

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