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When bad decisions are criminal
July 21, 2009 - Joe Gorman
Four-year-old India Davis is dead because the adults around her made bad decisions.
First, there was the adult who allowed her to go with the man accused of running from police and getting in an accident that killed her early Friday evening on the lower West Side.
Next, is the decision by the owner of the van -- who was charged by police today with wrongful entrustment -- to allow Charles C. George to drive her van.
There was the decision by George himself to not make sure the girl was strapped into a seat belt, as well as possibly drinking and driving and not stopping after rear ending a car on Mahoning Avenue.
The driver of that car also made a bad decision by chasing George while calling the cops. He should have just made the call, got the license plate number, and backed off. He may not have caused the accident, but according to witnesses he freaked George out and may have added to the stress level of the entire situation.
If I were handling this case, I would file more charges and let the chips fall were they may, especially against the parent or guardian who allowed India to get in a vehicle with a man who has 21 open suspensions on his license and may quite possibly have been drunk at the time. It may not fit the legal definition of child endangerment, but you can't get any more endangered as a child than that.
In these types of cases, there's usually a pattern when a bad decision is made; the person or persons making the decisions were probably raised by people who did not make good decisions, sometimes for entire generations.
Yet, that is no excuse. There has to be a time when common sense takes over. Especially when the welfare of a child is involved.
We all make bad decisons from time to time. But the decisions that led to India's death are criminal. Any adult involved should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
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