Many years ago, I was a criminal defense and civil rights lawyer in Minneapolis. One day, a young woman named Rebecca came into my office. She was a student at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul. She and my law clerk were friends, and he had encouraged her to talk with me about her brother, Riley.[*]
For no apparent reason, Riley had knocked his mother to the ground, beat her severely, kicked her in the head, and chased her into the basement of their Wisconsin home. She eventually escaped out a window and called the local police, who arrested him and took him to jail.
The prosecutor charged Riley with assault. He eventually pled guilty, and a judge sentenced him to four years in prison. In prison, he started a fight and they put him in disciplinary segregation. That’s where he killed himself. For some, that was the end of the story.
But I learned long ago that in the criminal justice system very little happens “for no apparent reason.”
To read the full original story, click here.