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  • garbear
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    The 10-year-old boy who accidentally started one of the worst California wildfires last month could face stern consequences, should prosecutors decide to bring charges. Though too young to be charged as an adult, the boy could still face millions of dollars in fines, removal from his home and possible detention as a ward of the state. For now the boy's fate - and that of his parents, who would be partially liable for any restitution payments he would have to pay - rests with Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley. His office told TIME he has not yet decided how to proceed. "The matter is under review," spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons told TIME on Monday. "No decision has been made."

    To bring those charges, all Cooley must decide is whether the boy knew right from wrong - an easy standard to meet, other prosecutors in the state say. "That is a lot easier to establish than you would think," said Cyndi Jo Means, a deputy district attorney in nearby San Diego County who leads that county's juvenile division arson team. "Think of your own children, even very small children; most of the time they know when they did something wrong."
    Despite the low hurdle to prosecution, Means contends the California juvenile justice system seeks to help young suspects, who can benefit from counseling and close supervision from the court and case workers. Children under 14 are nearly always charged as juveniles, not adults - no matter what the crime. "We try to help the child, and prosecuting them as adults would not be very helpful," Means said. Any finding of guilt, she added, would not follow the boy into adulthood.
    Southern Californians are still sorting through the wreckage from the fires, which burned more than 800 square miles - an area 40 times as large as Manhattan - and destroyed some 2,100 homes. The 10-year-old's carelessness sparked the Buckweed fire in Los Angeles County, which destroyed 21 homes and injured at least three people. Those losses have left some residents in a less than forgiving mood. "If you accidentally set a massive fire that destroys homes, causes residents to flee for their lives and requires millions of dollars in resources to extinguish, then you damn well need to pay the piper," wrote Dave Bossert on his online newspaper, The West Ranch Beacon.
    Peter Arenella, a professor at the UCLA Law School said any prosecution of a 10-year-old that aims to punish the boy, rather than help him, "is an absurdity. The only justification for that would be if, in some extreme case, there was a need to protect society from him." Barring that, he said, prosecutors should be reluctant to sweep the boy up into the legal system.
    It's hard to see how stern consequences - taking the boy from his parents, for instance, and handing down a multi-million fine - would be helpful to the 10-year-old. Much of the decision of whether to prosecute him rests with Cooley, who like prosecutors everywhere has a great deal of discretion. Unless uglier details about the boy's behavior are discovered, he could decide that in this case playing with matches doesn't rise the level of arson - even if the boy admits he knew that doing so was wrong. As Means points out, children almost always admit they knew their actions were wrong when they are questioned by police or prosecutors, which can be a scary experience for a kid.
    When the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the death penalty for inmates who were under 18 when they committed their crimes, it argued that teenagers' brains are not fully formed until they are grown, and that punishing them as adults was therefore cruel and unusual. No one is saying a 10-year-old boy ought to be executed for setting a fire, but even the lesser punishment the boy is facing could be nearly as cruel. That has led some to argue that the bar for prosecution ought to be higher than simply proving that he knew right from wrong. Boys know lots of things are wrong - from ignoring bedtimes to eating too many cookies. A better standard, some argue, would be determining whether the boy, at 10, had any way of knowing the consequences of what he was doing with those matches. With reporting by Jill Underwood/San Diego


    http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/2007110...rgedinthefires


    Thats too crazy.

    Leave a comment:


  • knittingknerd
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    We're knitting squares for kids who lost everything in the Slide fire. I heard something totally sad though. There's a guy who works for Operation Provider/the food bank up here. He is called "Santa Claus" because he's one of those guys with the real beard and every year he does Santa for the kids up here. Goes to the hospital and everything. He lost his house.

    Leave a comment:


  • MollyTrolly
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Originally posted by NeverNeverland View Post
    Bumping this to shre this info. Please spread it around:

    Living Spaces in Southern California is giving away free mattress and box springs, any size, to people who recently lost their homes in the fires.
    Bring your insurance information or FEMA papers
    Thats a great idea to use this thread to share info! In addition if you have a GM vehicle and live in one of the 7 counties impacted by the fires you can take your can into a participating dealer for a free new installed air filter!

    Leave a comment:


  • NeverNeverland
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Bumping this to shre this info. Please spread it around:

    Living Spaces in Southern California is giving away free mattress and box springs, any size, to people who recently lost their homes in the fires.
    Bring your insurance information or FEMA papers

    Leave a comment:


  • MollyTrolly
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Originally posted by garbear View Post
    I just heard on the news people in Sacramento are posing as firefighters, and going door to door asking for people to donate money for the fire in So-Cal. People will go so low to make money. Why in the world would you try to make money off of a bad event?!?!
    People like this always come out of the woodworks after a disaster. I have heard of people posing as utility workers going to homeowners asking for money up front to get the power or gas turned back on...preying on people in a time of disaster is the lowest thing ever...just like some hotels that were jacking up rates.

    My Mom manages a hotel in Redlands and last week over 50% of their guests were from the fires and they were giving them the lowest rate they allow for that hotel, its unfortunately that this is not a common practice.

    Leave a comment:


  • garbear
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    I just heard on the news people in Sacramento are posing as firefighters, and going door to door asking for people to donate money for the fire in So-Cal. People will go so low to make money. Why in the world would you try to make money off of a bad event?!?!

    Leave a comment:


  • thmar
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Originally posted by LuvsLilo View Post
    We got confirmation today that my MIL's house is okay. A friend's son was in the area and went to her house.

    Leave a comment:


  • kelly
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Yvonne.. be safe ok....

    Leave a comment:


  • kelly
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Originally posted by LuvsLilo View Post
    We got confirmation today that my MIL's house is okay. A friend's son was in the area and went to her house.
    :yea:

    Leave a comment:


  • QuietViolet
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Originally posted by LuvsLilo View Post
    We got confirmation today that my MIL's house is okay. A friend's son was in the area and went to her house.

    :yea:

    Leave a comment:


  • LuvsLilo
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    We got confirmation today that my MIL's house is okay. A friend's son was in the area and went to her house.

    Leave a comment:


  • goofygoof
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    I posted this earlier, but wanted to repost it and offer any advice or information people may need during this tragedy:

    For those who are under mandatory evacuation:

    Check with your insurance agent/company on applicable "Prohibited Use" coverage.

    Most insurance policys state that when a civil authority prohibits your use of the 'residence premises' (structure), because of direct damage to a neighboring premises (could be sub divisions, neighborhoods, etc...) you may get some coverage for living expenses you incur...


    This usually is for a period of 2 weeks.

    .
    .
    Thats my public service announcement for the day
    .
    If anyone has any property insurance questions (homeowners, commercial, etc...) feel free to PM me for any help!

    Leave a comment:


  • PrincessY
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    That's a good site! Thanks! Shows I should be safe.

    Leave a comment:


  • DLandFansAZ
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    I don't know if this helps anyone or if it has been posted but I'll put it up anyway. You can go to the site www.geomac.gov with provides perimeter data on wildfires for multi-agency coordination. They've pulled the live satellite feeds due to high traffic, but if you have google earth installed you can get perimeter maps of the various fires.

    Stay safe.
    DLandFansAZ

    Leave a comment:


  • QuietViolet
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Stay away, Santiago...Stay away.... Santiago is evil.

    Leave a comment:


  • PrincessY
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Excellent news, KK!! :yea:

    Check out what is now coming over the forest near me. This was taken from my driveway about 15 minutes ago. It wasn't there this morning. This is the Santiago Fire, which I hope stays away!

    Leave a comment:


  • QuietViolet
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    So happy for you KK!

    Leave a comment:


  • Mouse princess
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    Great news!!

    Leave a comment:


  • LuvsLilo
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    That's great KK!

    Leave a comment:


  • kelly
    replied
    Re: Malibu Fire

    That is wonderful news KK:yea:

    Leave a comment:

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