- Texas man arrested for powder-letter hoax
- Islamic State opens ‘marriage bureau’ for single jihadists
- Drone almost blocks California firefighting planes
- Tornado rips off roofs, downs trees near Boston
- GOP: Environmental rules keeping agents from accessing border
- John Kerry: Millions displaced by religious fighting in 2013
- Federal appeals court rules against Virginia’s gay marriage ban
- White House says Russia ‘losing’ war in Ukraine
- Hamas turns to North Korea for weapons deal, Iran for money
- Syrian casualties surge as jihadis consolidate
SIMMONS: Drawn-out justice in Sean Taylor’s death still stings
Question of the Day
As an NBA fan, it’s difficult this time of year to await the NBA draft, which is this week, and not think about University of Maryland star Len Bias, who was taken by the Boston Celtics with the No. 2 pick in the 1986 June draft and was dead two days later. Sadly, Bias played a role in his own death by ingesting drugs.
That still hurts.
Yet, there’s another sports tragedy that stings even more, and that is the killing of Washington Redskins safety Sean Taylor during a break-in at his Florida home and the fact that justice is moving agonizingly slow.
Colleague Nathan Fenno, a great reporter and wonderful storyteller, explains in Monday’s editions of The Washington Times who and what helped to drag a murder case that began Nov. 27, 2007, when five suspects broke into Taylor’s Miami home.
The entry of the story is told through the monotonous goings-on of murderer Venjah Hunte, with whom Mr. Fenno has been corresponding and who maintains a measure of human dignity in Miami’s Metro West Detention Center by sticking to a daily routine that includes prayer.
Hunte agreed to a plea deal in 2008 and is serving a 29-year sentence, the only person connected with the killing who has had his day in court.
And, like the rest of us, Hunte waits.
From the outside, it seems as though the key players charged with meting out justice and the defendants are mocking the Sixth Amendment’s “speedy trial” clause.
The judge issued a gag order in 2008, so who knows?
Curiously, one of the defendants — Eric Rivera, the suspected gunman — is writhing like a snake in the grass: Last year, he dropped his defense attorney and just this month filed a motion to represent himself, Mr. Fenno tells us.
The lawyer for another defendant got busted in a wire-fraud scheme.
The delays and motions leave us now waiting to see what will happen in August, when Mr. Rivera and the three others, all behind bars and all charged with first-degree murder, are scheduled for trials that, Mr. Fenno says, “have been relentlessly delayed since the first attempt in April 2008.”
“Last year, for instance, a trial date of April 16 became Nov. 5, then April 5 of this year,” he reports. “The latest try is set for August.”
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Award-winning opinion writer Deborah Simmons is a senior correspondent who reports on City Hall and writes about education, culture, sports and family-related topics. Mrs. Simmons has worked at several newspapers, and since joining The Washington Times in 1985, has served as editorial-page editor and features editor and on the metro desk. She has taught copy editing at the University of ...
- SIMMONS: Re-education of humanity and the PC crowd
- SIMMONS: What happened in Vegas can't stay in Vegas
- SIMMONS: Tell Joe Biden and the NAACP that politics aren't black and white
- SIMMONS: Youthful sounds of music stirring in Prince George's County
- 'No cellphone' sidewalk pops up in D.C.
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By Scott Pinsker
- D.C. seeks to stay judge's order allowing gun owners to carry in public
- Illegal immigrants demand representation in White House meetings
- Hillary Clinton: Forget Obama, George W. Bush made her 'proud to be an American'
- Babson College, BYU win top spots in Money magazine's college rankings
- Iraqi Christians rally at White House: 'Obama, Obama, where are you?'
- White House defends Kerry failure to broker Middle East cease-fire
- Romney would win popular vote in rematch against Obama: CNN poll
- D.C. seeks stay in order striking down ban on handguns in public
- Tennessee Gov. Haslam slams White House for secret dump of illegals in his state
- Computer glitch caused odd Saturday release of D.C. guns ruling
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq