To The Editor:
This has been bothering me since the day it happened, the shooting incident in Massena.
It seems to me that some years ago New York state enacted a gun law aimed at getting illegal guns off the street, there was a mandatory 5 year prison sentence for getting caught with or using an illegal handgun in commision of a crime.
I dont believe I have ever heard of anyone being given that sentence, instead it is plea bargained away for a quick conviction. Which, at least in my mind, bloats the DAs conviction rate only to let the criminal back onto the street sooner to just do it again.
If you watch the news and read the papers enough youll notice a decided upswing in crime in not only Massena but most of St. Lawrence county, maybe its time that our DA uses the law and makes sure that people are prosocuted to the full extent rather than looking for that plea and quick turn around of offenders.
New York has seen fit to enact NEW laws mostly aimed at law abiding citizens ie SAFE Act, we all know this will not stop the criminals from getting the gun of their choice, but maybe, JUST maybe if we ask our DA to close down the Dodge City reputation that is becoming the North Country and give the bad guys the sentence they deserve it will go a long ways to alleviate the problems we are now having, that will only get worse if allowed to go unchecked.
Even the Police Chief in Massena has some concerns about crime, the DAs office and light sentences for offenders, I have spoken to police officers that have some problem with the idea that a simple ammunition clip can get you more jail time under state law than actually pulling a trigger in a public place or, and God forbid, molesting a child.
Something has to change around here, people are not only leaving the State, they are leaving the North Country, lets make this the safe place it was, and the safe place it should always be.