Caught By The Commish, But No Jail

From The Blogs

August 15, 2009

When you get caught red-handed by Baltimore's top cop, you'd think some time in the slammer was a pretty sure bet.

But that's not what happened to two brothers, Devin and Davon Rogers, who were arrested New Year's Day by none other than city Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III, who chased the men down and slapped the cuffs on them after spotting them firing shotguns into the air in the Shipley Hill neighborhood. On Monday, a city judge accepted a plea deal putting both men on probation but allowing them to avoid prison time.

Afterward, Mr. Bealefeld declined to comment except to say police would continue to focus on getting illegal guns of the streets. But it was pretty clear he was irked. Who wouldn't be, after risking your life to make an arrest, only to have a court refuse to back you up?

On the other hand, a spokeswoman for City State's Attorney Patricia Jessamy said prison should be reserved for violent repeat offenders; neither brother had a serious criminal record.

With all due respect to Mr. Bealefeld, Ms. Jessamy is right. Celebrating New Year's with firearms is dangerous and against the law, but it doesn't necessarily make you a serious bad guy; and unfortunately, it's not that uncommon in Baltimore. We hope the brothers learned their lesson and stay in line from now on. If they don't, you can bet Mr. Bealefeld will be ready to cuff 'em again - and next time make sure they end up in the pokey.

-Glenn McNatt

Readers respond

Where's the outrage for this? The media always wants to talk about "illegal guns" and how the pervasiveness of guns is "ruining" our society. Responsible gun owners aren't doing these types of things, yet when two guys decide to fire a weapon indiscriminately, they're coddled by the system and given probation.

Kyle

They should have received some jail time. They may not be bad guys, but they excercised bad behavior which could have resulted in someone being injured or killed. I only hope that no one gets hurt if they didn't learn their lesson.

Ravensfan59

Where did all this talk of "illegal guns" come from? Shotguns are perfectly legal. Did these guys show poor judgment and endanger the public? Yes! Did anyone get hurt or killed? No! How many of you speed in your car on the way to work? Car accidents kill way more people than guns. Should you go to jail for that, or should you get a warning so that you'll think twice before doing it again?

IcedC

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