Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Too Old To Commit Another Murder?

The Washington Post ran a story with this eye-catching headline, He was deemed too old to be dangerous. Now, at 77, he’s been convicted of another murder.

When we teach elder law, oftentimes the focus is on the elder as a victim, but we do know that an elder can also be a perpetrator. In this case, the perpetrator, who

When he came before a judge in Portland, Maine, in 2010, he was in his late 60s, and had spent roughly a third of his life in prison. After doing time for killing his wife, he had assaulted another woman and gone back to jail, only to get out and attack a third woman. Flick’s violent tendencies didn’t seem likely to go away with age, both the prosecutor and his probation officer warned. But the judge chose to sentence him to just shy of four years in prison, noting that by the time he was released in 2014, he would be 72 or 73.

Here's the crux of the matter--the quote from the judge who sentenced him: "[a]t some point Mr. Flick is going to age out of his capacity to engage in this conduct... , and incarcerating him beyond the time that he ages out doesn’t seem to me to make good sense.”  The article notes that statistics support the judge's perspective on this, but those statistics didn't predict the outcome here:

Eight years after that hearing, [he] struck again, fatally stabbing a woman outside a laundromat ... as her 11-year-old twin sons watched. Now 77, he was convicted of murder ... and, this time, it looks likely that he’ll spend the rest of his life in prison. The charges carry a minimum 25-year sentence, and prosecutors plan to request that he be placed behind bars for life.

So to answer the question posed in the title of this post, No, he wasn't too old to commit another murder.

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/elder_law/2019/07/too-old-to-commit-another-murder.html

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