I swear every Westword story is always about some criminal that the rest of the world is supposed to now feel sorry for...it's always how "the system let this person down," how "questionable evidence" or "inconclusive investigations" — and never the criminal himself — are always to blame. This publication just needs to bill itself as "Criminals Need Your Love." The guy was involved in a murder, he made the choices that got him there, and he made plenty of bad ones, as he himself states. It doesn't matter if he was fourteen or forty-four...period. So quit trying to elicit sympathy for these people who rob, steal, maim and kill. How about from now on, you instead publish multi-page articles about the true victims of these crimes, instead of the losers who commit them?
Too bad the nice man he murdered doesn't get a second chance.
Posted at westword.com
A well-written story about a man I came to know when I hired him to work where I worked. Josh Beckius is proof positive that if somebody wants to make changes in their life, they can. Shortly I will complete my master's degree in criminal justice, and I must say that I am inspired by Josh. I applaud him and the Colorado Department of Corrections on a job well done.
Ray Mallette Benson, Vermont
Good to hear Josh Beckius is doing so well, but what about the person he killed? What about the family who loved and respected him? There is no sorrow for him in this article. Society did not let him down; he let himself down.
I was a manager at the Subway next door and was on duty the night Charlie Pa and Josh chose of their own free will to rob the theater and kill Dayton James. These kids, these morons, got exactly what they deserved, and to glorify any part of their lives as you have in this article is a slap in the face to his family and friends. You suck for having written this article. Sadly, in some way, I want you, Juliet, to be a victim of a similar crime, so you know what it's like and maybe with that perspective you'll stop lifting up criminals and focus on the lives they viciously took instead. You are a loser of the highest magnitude, and in many ways of the same character as the killers. I truly hope you and the editor who allowed this garbage to go to print both lose your jobs and get blacklisted in your community. Neither of you should be allowed to publish any longer.
Posted at westword.com
"Feed Me," Melanie Asmar, October 13
I'm imagining a great city in which parking meters post clear and simple directions so as to minimize the number of people receiving tickets. It's a city in which the police don't hand out traffic citations for petty technical infractions, the parking patrollers don't ticket vehicles after the street sweepers have already passed through, and the photo radar and red-light cameras and the officers validating them don't indiscriminately harvest drivers caught in less-than-clear violations. More important, I'm imagining that parking regulations encourage visitors to visit, while dealing with limited parking availability — fairly. I'm also imagining that diminishing law enforcement resources are shifted back to crime prevention and crime solving, genuine safety improvement, and community building.
Maybe then the citizens would stop believing what city officials continue to ignore or deny: that law enforcement in Denver has become less about serving its community and building trust, and more about generating revenue.
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Maybe then Denver would be more inviting to prospective employers.