GUILTY FL - David Galarriago, 2, beaten to death, Jacksonville, 14 March 2011

Discussion in 'Recently Sentenced and Beyond' started by porkchop, Jun 7, 2011.

  1. porkchop

    porkchop New Member

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  3. JenniferTx

    JenniferTx www.tristatrace.wordpress .com

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    Sad story all around but it is the best thing that he is locked up for life since this wasn't just an accident. He broke his brothers leg before too. He is better locked up for life rather than out on the street to kill again.
     
  4. SunnieRN

    SunnieRN Active Member

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    retracted comments.
     
  5. Sarahlou

    Sarahlou Active Member

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    No way should a 12 year old be locked up forever. He needs treatment, help and punishment yes but not life in prison. IMO.
     
  6. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    Good God, what have we become in this country! Not just a 12-year-old, but a 12-year-old who was born to a 12-year-old mother himself and neglected by her and abandoned by his father (who was in prison for impregnating the mother).

    The point isn't that we should feel sorry for this kid (though we should), but neither should we assume he is fully formed and all he can be. There are numerous studies that show children his age aren't fully aware of the consequences of their actions. How can we confine a child to life in prison for something he couldn't fully understand?

    By all means confine him to juvenile detention and get him appropriate treatment. But life in prison? Outrageous!
     
  7. scapa

    scapa Active Member

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    The crime (and the child) are both chilling. But a life in prison from 12 unto death? Even for the "three square meals and a nice soft bed" crowd that's surely a living death, no?

    My niece is going on 12 -- I see no evidence that she's capable of thinking through the full consequences of her actions, or even operating with full intentionality, as most adults understand it (which requires means-end thinking of a pretty high order). Sounds like the balance of evidence supports a juvie sentence and intensive rehab efforts. Sad sad sad.

    s
     
  8. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    Now charging the mother is another matter. I don't know all her circumstances, but the ones I do know are very sad and perhaps there is mitigation.

    But leaving your toddler alone with a 12-year-old who broke the toddler's leg 5 months ago?

    Sounds like the definition of negligence to me.
     
  9. ella971

    ella971 New Member

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    I hope they can place him in a proactive environment and I'm sure prison would not be the place. Punishment of course but in the right place he may have a chance. Mom? no comment.
     
  10. azmama

    azmama New Member

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    I just read an aritcle full of information about the neglect and abuse that Christian endured during his short life, it is mind boggling! Sexual abuse, physical abuse, neglect and his step father committed suicide in front of the boy!

    None of this is an excuse for what happened, but it seems what this child is is a result of his upbringing, children are not inherently evil.
     
  11. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    I don't even know if punishment is appropriate. It may be; I just haven't seen all the facts. It appears he may have injured his sibling while wrestling with the younger child. So perhaps this is just a case of bad judgment, of playing too rough with a toddler.

    Yes, an adult should have known better after breaking the baby's leg in January. But it isn't unusual for a 12-year-old to make the same stupid mistake twice.

    Most of all, I agree that this kid needs considerable rehabilitation: psychological, social, educational and vocational. Merely warehousing him for six to nine years isn't going to help much, I'm afraid. (Not that our cheapness as a society is an excuse to lock him up forever.)
     
  12. Allusonz

    Allusonz New Member

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    I agree something very wrong with this entire picture and how terribly sad either way you look at it
     
  13. Maznblu1

    Maznblu1 Member

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    This is really a tough one. On one hand this poor kid never had a chance. On the other, I think some people are evil and can't be fixed. Society needs to be protected from them.
     
  14. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    I agree there are some people who can't safely life in society. But I don't see how we can know that when they are 12.
     
  15. shadowraiths

    shadowraiths LISK Liaison, Verified Forensic Psychology Special Staff Member Moderator

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    Imo, this case will become a debate of nature vs nuture. If we believe nature, this child was born evil. there is no hope. Lock him up. Throw away the key. Conversely, if we believe nurture, this child is a result of his environment. One that involved a pedophile father, a child-mother, a drug addicted grandmother, and a sorely ineffective division of child & family services system. Again, no hope. The child was doomed from the day he was born.

    As for me, I'm of the biopsychosocial model of behavior. This model looks at everything from genetics (biological), neural development (biological), personality (psychological), and environment (social). What this means is that there is no way of knowing whether he is genetically predisposed to impulse control problems, unless a full blown family history study is undertaken. As for neural development? He's only 12, and the part of the brain that regulates impulse control is not fully developed until mid-to-late 20s. Personality-wise? Again, that would require extensive evaluation. Importantly, he cannot be evaluated for anti-social personality disorder, or the more serious, sociopathy, and even more serious psychopathy, due to his developmental age.

    And even then, within this model and with all these tests, there is no reliable means to predict the final outcome... that is, whether this child will continue down a path of violence or can be taught to consciously make pro-social choices, and engage in pro-social behavior. I admittedly think there is always hope. Esp with someone that young.

    Regardless, I am of the opinion that to lock him up and throw away the key is society's final nail in this child's social coffin, and puts forth a clear and resounding message: we did not give two shakes about you before, and now that you did this, we really don't give two shakes about you.
     
  16. BrownRice

    BrownRice Well-Known Member

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    Well, sure I feel horrible about his upbringing and background. Extremely sad.

    However, how do we identify him in the future (if/when he is released from juv/prison) so other innocent children do not fall victim to his sad story? It's great to be compassionate and have empathy, but that still means we will have a disturbed individual walking the streets with the ability to hurt other children/people.
     
  17. reportertype

    reportertype Dogs are awesome!

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    Nova and Shadow have pretty much stated my thoughts and opinions on this, based on what we know as of now and said it much better than I could.
     
  18. kgeaux

    kgeaux New Member

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    from the link in the initial post:

    The 12-year-old has been examined by two forensic psychologists who found him to be emotionally underdeveloped but essentially reformable despite a tough life.



    That settles it in my mind. "Emotionally underdeveloped" tells us that this boy cannot handle himself emotionally as well as the average 12 year old----and the average 12 year old isn't known to have a firm grip on his/her emotional life. "Essentially reformable" tells us that there is hope that this child CAN BE REFORMED WITH HELP.

    This child can be fixed, and society should care enough to help him.
     
  19. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    Fair question. I'm not an expert, but there are models of juvenile detention that emphasize rehabilitation over punishment. Unfortunately, I believe we've discarded most of them in the U.S. out of concern over costs or just because we like to punish people.
     
  20. Jacobi

    Jacobi New Member

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    This reminds me of the 1968 case of Mary Bell. A victim of sexual abuse and having a prostitute as a mother, she killed two small boys at age 11. She served 12 years and apparently is fully rehabilitated. On the other hand, Jon Venables (of the Bulger murder) developed into a paedophile...
     
  21. shadowraiths

    shadowraiths LISK Liaison, Verified Forensic Psychology Special Staff Member Moderator

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    The problem is, you cannot truly know. Furthermore, if we lock people up bc they might engage in violence, our prison systems would be over-flowing. And that's not to mention that there is no means, to date, that withstands the test of predictive validity.

    With the above in mind, a little anecdotal tale (I've told before, will tell again). We have a juvenile facility in sacramento that is supposed to be designed for children caught up in the legal system. A colleague was doing her internship there and actually quit after a week. When I asked her why, she said workers were often assaulted and the kids would regularly riot and/or start fires to distract workers while another set of kids would attack and rape the younger residents. She said the place was horrendous, that the people running the place didn't care and/or ignored staff complaints about what was occurring, and that it was a breeding ground for future serial killers. The youths at this place ranged from 8 to 17, and came from upper middle class to upper class families. This place was said to be their last hope.

    I relate the above for a reason. What concerns me most about the child in this thread, is that many of our so-called youth treatment facilities (and yes, I realize anecdote != data) seem to be nothing more than holding places that end up breeding violence as opposed to deterring it. And that this very thing, imnsho, presents the greatest risk for someone who has already exhibited the sort of violent behavior this child has.

    That said, unfortunately, I do not know the answer to what I consider to be a growing problem. What I do know, or rather, strongly feel, is that we, as a society need to revisit how we're dealing with troubled children. Rather than waiting until the tragedy strikes, then locking them up and throwing away the key.
     

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