PLODDING TOWARD AN ARREST

Date: 1999-03-03

THE ISSUE: NO CHARGES YET IN DEATH OF FOSTER CHILD OUR VIEW: WHEN YOU'VE GOT THE EVIDENCE, YOU ACT ON IT

Rocky Mountain News
 
We're sure that Adams County District Attorney Bob Grant will bestir himself at any moment, review the evidence in the killing of a 2 1/2-year-old foster child, and perhaps even authorize an arrest warrant. Police can be so impatient, you know, and the fact that they believe they have a solid case against the foster father and want to charge him as soon as possible, hardly means that Grant should drop everything in order to put a suspected killer behind bars. You can imagine all the other important paperwork that he must get out of the way first.

And who knows, perhaps the district attorney has to dispose of another talk-show commitment involving the Ramsey murder case before he can free up a decent block of time. First things first, we always say.Still, the situation does leave us wondering: Isn't a 37-year-old man who allegedly beats a small child to death with his fists something of a risk to society? Isn't he a risk to flee from prosecution? Isn't it almost always a good idea to arrest and charge a suspect in a serious violent crime as soon as it becomes possible?

Child abuse resulting in the death of a child - or, in this case perhaps, plain, old-fashioned murder - surely counts as a serious crime in Adams County, doesn't it? We thought so. That's why we were so surprised to see a Westminster police spokesman complaining to a News reporter that officers couldn't get an appointment with Grant to review evidence in the death of little Miguel Arias-Baca.

First Grant was on vacation - you'd think someone else would be deputized to act in his absence, wouldn't you? - and then, the police spokesman said, the district attorney put them off till Thursday.

But not to worry. Grant has no doubt heard that police say the suspect, Ricky Haney, is in a cooperative mood and has ties to the community, so he's not likely to flee. Justice can take its plodding time.

Then again, you never know when a fellow's mood will shift and he'll come to the realization that he'd rather not take a chance on spending the rest of his life in prison.

With many people who get in trouble with the law, mood swings are something of a specialty.

0

Pound Pup Legacy