Tuesday, June 3, 2008

My First Community Impact Statement: May 1, 2008, Thomas A. Banks

Photo by John Hoff, 3119 4th Street North

I have actually been submitting numerous community impact statements via internet since May 1, 2008, racking up (by my reckoning) a couple dozen...

Somebody needs to do it. Somebody needs to show it is possible to stand up to the dealers, prostitutes and drug loiterers who tear down our North Side, and submit one statement after another to the court system at the moment of sentencing, demanding an end to our neighborhoods being held hostage by a relatively small number of, well, scumbags who can be easily overpowered if only the decent people will band together to do so.

The first statement I submitted was on May 1, 2008. I remember it was a busy day, because I had a legal brief to write for a class and at the end of the day I got word from the Polish lady about the board being ripped of 415 31st Avenue North. Again.

But that day I did manage to get my first impact statement submitted via internet, and it concerned a disorderly conduct incident at 3119 4th Street North, the "other" apartment complex owned by Shirley Guevara which (though it couldn't quite compete with 3101 6th Street) had its own consistent issues.

Here is the statement I submitted on Thomas A. Banks.
The apartment complex at 3119 4th Street N. is known as a place of dangerous social disorder and drug dealing, scary to the decent people who live in the area. I have owned property there from March 31, 2008 to the present day.

The actions of individuals like Banks continue to reverberate today and even to impact me, a new property owner seeking to "fix up or tear down" and make the area better. The actions of the defendant in question, Thomas Banks, have contributed to the notorious and dangerous reputation of the neighborhood, which a few brave and decent people are valiantly struggling to overcome and create an Eco-Village.

I speak as somebody who has purchased property in the area in a conscious attempt to be part of the positive instead of the negative. This individual, Thomas A. Banks, represents "the negative." Therefore he should serve as long as possible so the positive people in this neighborhood will have more time to make the area better, and keep moving forward our dream of an eco-village, before Thomas Banks is inevitably released and--due to what appears to be a life which has taken a certain negative direction--inevitably appears back in front of that very address, doing the exact same thing.

It would be good if a miracle took place and Banks reflected on his crime and the direction of his life, instead of engaging in multiple layers of denial, rationalization, fatalistic negativity and bravado as part of some "gangster" subculture which will only end two ways: long incarceration or the grave.

Since a miracle in this man's life of overwhelming negativity seems unlikely, and the law should not be based upon hope of a miracle, then let Banks serve as long as possible, whether it be incarceration or some form of supervised release, so the decent people struggling to make the neighborhood better instead of worse will be protected from him as long as possible.

1 comment:

Johnny Northside said...

The results for Thomas A. Banks were as follows.

Days Sentenced: 90 (0 Days Executed, 83 Days Stayed, 5 Days Credited)

Fine Sentenced $50.00 ($50.00 Executed, $0.00 Stayed, $0.00 Suspended)

So he got...seven days? Instead of the usual two days or no days? Is the system actually responding in a very minor way? One wonders.