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Bath County News - Outlook
Owingsville, Kentucky
July 6, 2006     Bath County News - Outlook
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July 6, 2006

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The Bath County News-Outlook Thursday, July 6, 2006 911 calls as evidence Calls made to 911 emergency operators may be admitted in criminal cases according to a recent United States Supreme Court decision. However, statements made to the police for purposes of investigation of the crime may not. At issue is the Confrontation Clause of the Sixth Amendment, which guarantees a criminal defendant the right "to be confronted with the witnesses against him" at trial. The Court in the past has interpreted this provision of the Constitution to bar the use of statements by witnesses who do not appear in court. The decision actually involved two cases before the Court. Both of the victims were female and were alleged to have been beaten by their boyfriends. In one case, the woman called 911 to report the assault. In the other the police came to the victim's home to take a statement. Charges were brought against both alleged abusers, but neither woman testified at trial. In both cases the women wanted to drop the proceeding. Nevertheless, both men were tried and convicted, based largely on the statements received from the two women. The Court stated that the statements made in the 911 call could be used to convict the boyfriend. It reasoned the pri- mary purpose of the call was to meet an ongoing emergency. The Court considered the statements more reliable since they were made in the heat of the moment. In the other case the Court determined that statements made to the police after the emergency was over were less reliable. There, their primary purpose was to establish or prove past events potentially relevant to a later criminal pros- ecution. There was more of an opportunity for the complain- ing witness to posture or exaggerate. The case is important because it will have a major effect in all criminal cases in which prosecutors seek to introduce evi- dence of past accusations by people who, for one reason or the other, cannot or will not repeat their charges in open court. In a number of cases, crime victims choose not to cooperate or testify. This can be for a number of reasons. Nevertheless, in many of these case either the prosecution or police want to see the defendant prosecuted. In other cases, it may be relatives of the victim who want the defendant pros- ecuted. If the witness will not cooperate, or is unable to, it leaves the prosecution in a quandary to prove its case unless it can use the victim's statements. That will be more difficult now unless the statement is in the form of a 911 call or some- thing of a similar nature. You may ask, why proceed if the victim does not care to cooperate? It must be remembered though that it is the state the Commonwealth--in whose name the prosecution is brought, not the victim's. It may well be in society's interest that an abusive person be tried and punished regardless what the victim desires. A criminal case is not like a civil case that is brought on behalf of an individual. There, the plaintiff does have the right to decide whether to pursue the case. Clearly victims should be consulted by prosecutors regarding the important decisions in criminal cases. However, prosecutors are not bound by the victim's wishes, even if that means going to trial when the victim does not want to. Why does Superman stop bullets with his chest but ducks when you throw a revolver at him? Why, Why, Why ? Why do people constantlyplained about the heat? Right now their is a petition Why do we press harder on return to the refrigerator with How come you never hearcirculating on the intemet as a a remote control when we know hopes that something new to eat father-in-law jokes? protest against what the senate the batteries are getting weak? will have materialized? The statistics on sanity are voted on recently which was to Why do banks charge a fee Why do people keep run- that one out of every four per- allow illegals to access our on "insufficient funds" when ning over a string a dozen times sons is suffering from some sort social security! We demand that they know there is not enough? with their vacuum cleaner, then of mental illness. Think of your you and all congressional repre- Why does someone believereach down, pick it up, examine three best friends--if they're sentative require citizenship for you when you say there are four it, then put it down to give the okay, then it's you. anyone to be eligible for social billion stars, but check when vacuum one more chance? KM services in the United States. you say the paint is wet? Why is it that no plastic bag Five million of our olderWe further demand that there Why doesn't glue stick to will open from the end on your Americans have'not signed up not be any amnesty given to the bottle? yet for their Medicare, Part D, illegals, and NO free services or Why do they use sterilized drug plan. They are old and funding, or payments to and for needles for death by lethal confused by this ridiculously illegal immigrants. injection? complex program. And we wonder why our Why doesn't Tarzan havea We are not going tograntgovernment is broke with this beard? - : them" 'ektLqiSion. t )ffe'ff i d btte pl-l titatt SWin Why does Supermanstop ~ However, 12 million illegal Washington. bullets with his chest, but ducks aliens are in our country and we.- -KM when you throw a revolver at are going to allow them to stay, She told me we couldn't him? first try? protest, procreate, receive sup- afford beer anymore and I'd Why do Kamikaze pilots How do those dead bugs port monies, attend schools, have to quit. wear helmets? get into those enclosed light fix- avoid paying income taxes, Then I caught her spending Whose idea was it to put tures? have our teachers take 300 $65.00 on make-up. And I an "S" in the word "lisp"? Why is it that wheneverhours of ESL (English as a sec- asked how come I had to give If people evolved from you attempt to catch something ond language) training at our up stuff and not her. apes, why are there still apes? that's falling off the table you expense, and we are going to She said she needed the Why is it that no matter always manage to knock some- cut them off but continue to make-up to look pretty for me. what color bubble bath you use thing else over? provide benefits to aliens who I told her that was what the the bubbles are always white? In winter why do we try to pay nothing into the system, beer was for. Is there ever a day that mat- keep the house as warm as it What is wrong with our federal I don't think she's coming tresses are not on sale? was in summer when we corn- government? back. b "The fellow who made our mattress took his on-the- job training on a prison chain gang," I was telling my snoring wife one insomniatic 3 a.m." The nut put all the lumps in little piles." During the war, he served made GI mattresses. But we resilient in those days. We took diers, because we didn't spend way. in the toture corps: he are younger and more our lumps like good sol- much time in beds any- Actually bedding makers have been theft own best customers since Adam fluffed up a stack of fig leaves and Eve told him to knock off the apple snacking and come to bed. But hang on because hope is on way. A hot little news item appeared recently. It told about some medical researchers who were testing a "superbed" that promises to quickly induce deep, natu- ral sleep - something like a therapeutic boilermaker, I guess. The bed supports sleepers on a mattress filled with air and tiny glass beads, each the size of a grain of sand. Warm air is pumped up through the beads and through a filter sheet and then around the sleeper. You sort of float around on a glass covered rug like you had been a customer of a Baghdad used carpet dealer. Five insomniacs, who habitually took heavy doses of drugs to get any sleep at all tried the bed, the story said, slept peacefully without the drugs. The absence of their wives' flailing elbows could not have contributed to this, naturally. Then a 24-year-old nurse was asked to spend a 24- hour period in a glass-bead bed and she slept 18 of those hours; said she couldn't stay awake. But you show me a 24-year-old nurse who had been chased 36 hours through hospital corridors by two shifts of amorous interns and I'll show you a nurse who can sleep 18 hours on a tubful of doorknobs. Far be it for me to pooh-pooh the superbed. It will probably appeal to the pot and petunia people. And everybody has got to sleep somewhere. But my own tak' g 1 ps f From the files of '!RUSS METZ", 1919-1996 invention is sleeping sacks puts the superbed back in the nightshirt and gaslight era. The thing that counts in sleeping is not time, but mileage. Unless you crawl in and die off, there is the distance factor to grabbing forty winks. It is normal to toss and turn several times an hour, to keep from wear- ing out all the skin on one side. And that's where my new sleeping appliances come in. It is called a rotosnoozer and this is the way it shapes up: it is cylindrical, lined with goose feathers and ther- mostatically controlled for your preferred sleeping tem- Memories Remember when you wound up the Victrola after each record? When acid from the A battery of your Atwater Kent burned a hole in the rug? And people sometimes ate parsnips. What was the name of the pianist who played at William S. Hart silent movies? Remember how the shabbiest shack in town had the prettiest tree in the front yard? Gals wore bloomers. And front porch swing went scree, scree, scree. Have you forgotten the town supported several black- perature. The rotosnoozer has a geared track at each end smith shops? The nights when dad brought ice cream and is power-driven by an electric motor that can be pre- set for any desired number of rotations per hour. You simply set the turn dial, flip on the motor, climb in and relax. The machine turns you on a schedule, with no effort on your part. No more banging your Shin on the footboard searching for a toehold, or windmilling home and you had to eat it before dinner or it melted? The days Ma said your stockings weren't on straight and your shirttail was out? Remember when Happy Hooligan was your favorite comic strip? Farmers grew any crop they wanted? When you shunned your friends after you got a haircut because you smelled like a girl? The day you sipped your favorite soda on a wire chair at the ice cream par- lor? And called overshoes galoshes? The afternoon you ran two miles to watch a plane land in a pasture? When you first had the house wired for electricity; it came on at 6p.m. and went off at llp.m.? Remember selling garden seeds or Cloverine salve for the first BB gun? Those were the days, when a diaper was always your arms to build up enough momentum for a tight three,cornered. When a dime bought 100 ladyfingers on turn. You wake up in the morning unbruised and the 4th of July and lasted all day. When corn cobs made unwounded after, a night of effortless bliss. You can good kindling for the stove. When fly ribbons caught rotate to any degree of dormancy: rare, medium or well- hundreds of flies but not nearly enough. And those long done to fit your personality, parcheesi games, a stroll through town, looking at the What's that ? A rotosnoozer built for two ? Get away, almanac and Sears Roebuck catalog. Remember? kid, you bother me. Go back to your glass beads and hot Those were the good old days because they produced air. When you get old enough to appreciate a good such fond memories. night's sleep, look me up. Onward, upward II