Sept. 1, 1996 -- Does it bring back memories of that night you three boys burglarized my home and set it on fire? I still see the 37 1/2 years of our lives in a rubble of ashes. I'm no closer to an answer why two complete strangers and a family member could be so cruel. Here we are four years later and take a good hard look at what that night did to all of us.
There is so much anger and hurt in the families and for what? A night of thrills! Mr. Family Member, was that night worth what it has done to your own family? You three boys had a choice that night, we didn't. You each got such lenient sentences and very little restitution payment to the great financial losses and emotional stress we were left by your "night of thrills." Two of you are supposed to be adults now, but you don't even hold a job long enough to pay us the restitution the court ordered you to pay. You seem to still like the life of crime and the county jail. Why are the lawyers and judges still pampering these criminals?
I lost my whole lifetime of memories in that fire, but the law still keeps letting you do your thing. I'm sick and tired of being a victim and I feel the laws need to be changed to make these people accountable for their crimes. Let us victims have more impact. We're trying to move forward, but it's hard when there's so much hurt caused in the family. I only hope someday all this hurt will go away, and the families can mend. It's hard work getting it all worked out, but we can do it if we all try. Life is too short.
Karen and Marion Hines
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