Brian Moore, the New York City police officer who was shot over the weekend by an ex-con, has died. Moore was 25 and had already received several police decorations.
Moore’s assailant, Demetrius Blackwell, reportedly has nine prior arrests, including two for assault on police officers. He was convicted of attempted murder for firing shots into a car, which is how he killed Moore. Thus, Blackwell had done it all before — he had assaulted police officers and shot at innocent people sitting in a car.
The left and the emerging bleeding-heart right complain that prison sentences are too long. But from what I can tell, Blackwell served seven years or less for his attempted murder conviction (the attempted murder occurred in 2001; Blackwell reportedly was released in 2008). Considering that Blackwell tried to kill a man he had just robbed at gunpoint, that sentence strikes me as too short. (Not that it should matter much, but Blackwell wasn’t a model prisoner; reportedly, he had “institutional adjustment problems[.]”)
After his release, Blackwell assaulted a police officer while being arrested in 2013, and in 2014 he allegedly threw bricks at the windows of a house and a parked car while waving a gun. There was an outstanding warrant for his arrest.
One way or another, Blackwell should have been in jail this weekend. Had he been, Brian Moore would still be alive and well.
When it comes to the criminal justice system, our priority should be keeping people like Demetrius Blackwell off the street. Unfortunately, things are trending in the opposite direction.
JOHN adds: Amen. When a horrific crime occurs, and information comes out about the person who committed it, my reaction is nearly always the same: why in the world wasn’t this guy in jail?