Find Sam Shelton Not Guilty…
… For THIS one – he’s still guilty of the rest.
In a previous life, I blogged extensively on Samson Shelton and his crimes, cowardice and incompetence. Now, I find myself in the odd position of defending him!
For those who don’t know, Sam Shelton, was a teacher dating a student named Ashley Reeves. He tried to break up with her – in his car, parked in a secluded spot. She got upset with him (who would have seen THAT coming?). He tried to throw her out of the car – using her head as a convienent handle. In the process, he heard a big snap and she started gurgling. He then tried to choke the life out of her three times and left her for dead in the woods.
THAT stuff he was absolutely guilty for. He confessed, pled guilty and was found guilty by a jury of his peers.
NOW, however, he is being tried for a subsequent incident.
from STL Today:
A year later, authorities were called to Shelton’s mother’s home in Smithton, where Shelton was on house arrest awaiting the attempted murder charge. Shelton had swallowed pills and written messages on his chest and foot refusing medical condition.
Prosecutors said he began yelling and punching sheriff’s deputies and emergency medical responders when they tried to resuscitate him. They said he continued the behavior at a Belleville hospital, where he allegedly made a racial slur and kicked a nurse in the face.
Now, I am no fan of the guy, but in this particular case, he should NOT be found guilty for assault.
Yes, I believe he kicked the nurse, and I believe he was fighting with the deputies and EMT. However, since he had very clearly NOT given them permission to lay hands on them and in fact had, in prominent writing, explicitly DENIED them the right to touch him. When they attempted to resuscitate him, he was merely defending himself. Really, if anyone should be tried for assault, it should be the EM’s, deputies and the nurse.
And I don’t buy the “he would have died otherwise” argument either. While I don’t condone suicide, I DO recognize your right to be stupid and self destructive so long as it doesn’t harm innocent bystanders (e.g. you want to shoot yourself, make sure no one is behind you. Don’t leave the pills you O.D. with out where children can get into them and if you are trying to drive into something immovable at a high speed, make sure you don’t hit anyone along the way or damage any property you don’t own).
So, while his actions were stupid and cowardly, in this particular case I don’t believe they should be considered unlawful.
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.