Juveniles charged as adults get what they deserve

  • Pictured is the sleeping area in one of the communal cells of the annex building at city jail where juveniles charged as adults are held.
Pictured is the sleeping area in one of the communal cells of… (By Kenneth K. Lam, )
August 06, 2012

Regarding your recent article about living conditions for juvenile offenders at the Baltimore City Detention Center, these young people were charged as adults because they robbed, raped, murdered or shot someone ("'Nobody belongs in those conditions,'" July 29). Are we supposed to feel sorry for them because they have no air conditioning?

Not that long ago these same juveniles were hanging out on the streets in hot and humid weather terrorizing their neighborhoods, but now they can't stand the heat? Actually, what they can't stand is that they got caught.

To say these offenders are being denied their basic rights is to say that citizens should pay whatever it takes to make them comfortable while they await trial. Criticizing the staff at the detention center for not doing their job because fights break out is totally ridiculous.

The staff are doing the best they can with the limited resources they have to work with. They cannot be expected to be everywhere or see everything that goes on there.

For a judge to move juveniles charged as adults to the Gay Street facility where there truly are naive young offenders is a travesty. Those who have committed relatively minor offenses are just going to be preyed upon and hurt by their more dangerous peers.

I sincerely hope that the lawyers and families of those nonviolent juveniles remember who put their sons and daughters in harm's way — and that they hold them accountable.

Gary Hornbaker, Severn

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