Disturbing stories about the continued neglect of Liberty County’s juvenile crime problem continue. The latest story zeroes in on perhaps the worst of what is becoming a shameful lack of attention to a very serious problem that is terrorizing some of our neighborhoods and encouraging juvenile delinquency.
Up to 50 class A and class B misdemeanors appear to be shelved by County Attorney Wes Hinch. We use the word “seem” because according to our sources, the juvenile probation department, local judges, and law enforcement are left out of the loop because of the assumption that any county attorney would process the juveniles and follow through with the cases.
Liberty Dispatch invites County Attorney Wes Hinch to clarify this issue and write in and let the people of this community know what he has done with these cases. Complaints persist about juveniles committing multiple crimes and bragging that there are no consequences. Ignoring young people’s disrespect for the law encourages a downward spiral of what might start out as a minor offense by a juvenile crying out for discipline. A county attorney ignoring or shelving such cases is unacceptable.
Frustration by law enforcement and people in areas in the county that have been affected continues. Law enforcement spending time and energy investigating cases and solving cases only to meet the juveniles they arrested back on the street again and finding out after the fact that there were no consequences to their previous act has to be a hair pulling event. Citizens instinctively realize that these juveniles will be emboldened by the inaction of the system and that the juveniles could become more dangerous.
Liberty Dispatch is encouraged by accounts that one of our local judges is trying to light a fire under Wes Hinch. Mr. Hinch is up for re-election this next cycle and is vulnerable in the Republican primary.