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Why wasn't Ronald Haskell already in jail?
July 11, 2014 - Andrea Johnson
Why wasn't Ronald Lee Haskell locked up last week when he allegedly tied his own mother up with duct tape in California and threatened her for speaking with his ex-wife?
A restraining order was taken out but apparently Haskell was still free to allegedly shoot and kill his ex-wife's sister, Katie Stay, her husband Stephen and four of their children, ages 4 to 14, at their home in Texas on Wednesday. He was reportedly there looking for his ex-wife and children and the Stays refused to tell him where they were. Haskell allegedly tried to kill the couple's oldest child too. The 15-year-old girl has a fractured skull from the bullet that grazed the back of her head and reportedly lost a finger trying to protect herself from the bullets that flew in her home. The girl, Cassidy Stay, was smart enough to play dead and called 9-1-1 after her "ex-uncle" had left. Had she not called, Haskell might also have killed the rest of her family, since she said he wanted to take out her grandparents too.
Since this happened in Texas, there isn't much doubt what will happen to Haskell if he is convicted of murder. He probably knows Death Row is his likely ultimate destination too, since the Daily Mail reported that Haskell fainted in court when the capital murder charges were read to him. I do not approve of the death penalty even for the likes of men who shoot and kill innocent children. Instead, I think such a man should be confined to a cell for the next 40 or 50 years and forced to ponder the evil he has committed. Death is too easy for a guy like that.
What is so infuriating about this case, like so many others, is how easy it was for a creep like Haskell to get his hands on firearms even though there were multiple domestic violence charges (involving his ex-wife and often committed in front of his own children) against him in Utah. His alleged attack on his mother was only the most recent. None of the news reports have said whether he has mental health issues as well, but I would not be surprised. If he had been either given a stiff sentence after any of the domestic violence charges or committed for treatment at a psychiatric hospital, perhaps six people would still be alive.
What changes would you make in sentencing for domestic violence cases?
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