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Attitudes towards Murderers

December 16th, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments

From the December 7 HT (I need to update this to add the newspaper comments, which is what’s really the point):

Blade Reed, 14, sentenced to 30 years in home invasion, attack”

Physical and sexual abuse as a toddler followed by emotional
trauma, foster care placements and then adoption into a
dysfunctional family marked Blade Reed’s first 14 years.

The teen will now spend the next 14 behind bars for his part in a
brutal attack against elderly neighbors last year that left 84-year-
old Richard “Dude” Voland dead and his wife of almost six
decades shot and stabbed. A judge sentenced him today to 30
years in jail, of which he will serve half; he gets credit for nine
months spent in jail since his arrest. …

The Reed brothers rode their bicycles a mile or so to the Volands’
Helmsburg home in the early morning hours of Nov. 15, 2008,
intending to steal beer. The two took along a .25 caliber handgun
stolen from another neighbor. They knocked on the door and
asked to use the phone. When Bennie Reed pointed his gun at
Dude Voland and said “no one needs to get hurt,” the 50-year
National Rifle Association member drew his own weapon. Reed
tried to knock it from the man’s hand, and a bullet fired from the
gun hit him in the arm. The teen then fired back, and a bullet from
the stolen gun struck the man in the head.

Bennie Reed then shot Mary Voland in the stomach with her
husband’s handgun after she came out of the bedroom and
provided medical care to her husband and also to Reed.

As the boys were leaving the house, without beer and wearing
bloody clothes, Bennie Reed told his brother to cut the woman’s
throat since she had witnessed her husband’s shooting. The
then-13-year-old admitted he sawed back and forth on the
woman’s neck with a kitchen knife.

This afternoon, he pleaded guilty to aggravated battery and
robbery resulting in serious injury. …

During a previous hearing back in November, Brown Circuit Judge
Judith Stewart determined that despite an agreement between the
prosecutor and defense attorney that Blade Reed should spend the
time until his 18th birthday not in prison but at the Indiana School
for Boys with other offenders his age, the law does not allow that
placement. So Reed will be incarcerated with other youthful
violent offenders in a special housing unit at Wabash Valley
Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison in Carlisle.

Brown County Prosecutor Jim Oliver said justice was served.
“This plea was justice. He committed an adult crime and he has
received adult consequences,” Oliver said in a written statement.
“Blade Reed pled guilty to what he agreed with his brother to do
that night, which was to commit an armed robbery. He received
the maximum disposition for his attack on Mrs. Voland.”

Cited among aggravating circumstances at the sentencing hearing
was the recognition that the boys played on Richard Voland’s
kindness to gain entry to his home that night. Oliver listed three
mitigating circumstances: the boy’s age, that he didn’t intend for
anyone to get hurt and his accepting responsibility for his

This is the front line of the Culture Wars. We have Tim Bayly and
we have Dawn Johnsen, to name two of our citizens with national
(if specialized) reputations. Massachusetts and Idaho are safe
territory for each side, but not Bloomington.



Two social workers were walking through a rough part of the town
in the evening. They heard moans and muted cries for help from a
back lane. Upon investigation, they found a semi-conscious man
in a pool of blood.”Help me-I’ve been mugged and viciously
beaten” he pleaded. The two social workers turned and walked
away. One remarked to her colleague:”You know the person that
did this really needs help”.

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