I have followed the Jeena Roberts case with much interest since the beginning.
Roberts pleaded guilty to intoxication manslaughter back in 2010. It was a car crash that killed a local mom and injured her daughter in which Roberts showed no remorse.
But the story took a twist when Lubbock Judge Jim Bob Darnell allowed her to return home to Houston after her conviction and spend time with her family for Christmas before serving her time. Well, guess what - Roberts never showed up to serve her jail time.
When she was finally apprehended, returned to Lubbock, and then tried and convicted for jumping bail by a jury. things got even stranger.
Judge Darnell sentenced her to seven years for jumping bail but ruled she could serve it at the same time as her 15 years for intoxicated manslaughter.
Which basically means she received no punishment at all for running from the law, becoming a fugitive from justice and being convicted by a jury .
By letting Jeena Roberts off like that, Judge Darnell has sent a very clear message. There are no consequences for ignoring the law.
Of course that's not the case in other courts, and I bet it isn't always the case in Darnell's, which makes me wonder why Jeena Roberts was treated so differently.
His rulings in this case from the very beginning were a slap in the face to the victim who died. That mother, Linda Smaltz, didn't get a lenient sentence, didn't get to go home and see her family for Christmas and didn't get mercy from a judge for skipping bail. so, if Judge Jim bob Darnell won't hold himself to a higher standard of justice, maybe the voters will.
We want to know what you think. Voice your opinion by commenting below, by e-mailing us at email@example.com or by writing us at:
KCBD-TV Attn: Consider This
5600 Avenue A
Lubbock, TX 79404
'Consider This' is a commentary by KCBD Vice-President and General Manager Dan Jackson.
Copyright 2013 KCBD. All rights reserved.