Kalamazoo teen sentenced in beating o...

Kalamazoo teen sentenced in beating of gay youth

There are 20 comments on the lezgetreal.com story from Sep 15, 2009, titled Kalamazoo teen sentenced in beating of gay youth . In it, lezgetreal.com reports that:

A Kalamazoo area teen accused of beating a gay 15-year-old Portage boy who pleaded guilty to aggravated assault for his part in the attack last month, has been sentenced to participate in an anger-management program by a Kalamazoo County juvenile court judge.

He is one of two teens who were accused last month of beating 15 year-old Steven Harmon in a Portage, Michigan parking lot.

In addition to the anger-management counseling, which could require the teen be held in the Kalamazoo County Juvenile Home for up to nine months, the 16-year-old defendant was also ordered to pay victim restitution and write a letter of apology to the victim

.

In August, Harmon was punched and kicked repeatedly by the 16-year-old boy and a 15-year-old as the attackers called him “faggot,” “queer” and other derogatory terms. Portage Police reported Harmon was hit in the head and face about 20 times by the two boys as he, a 17-year-old female friend and her 5-year-old nephew were walking home

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Since: Jul 09

Sonora, CA

#1 Sep 15, 2009
cool..so I can start killing straight people and just have to go to anger management courses?..good to know!!
Mona Lott

Elizabeth, NJ

#2 Sep 15, 2009
deeter1013 wrote:
cool..so I can start killing straight people and just have to go to anger management courses?..good to know!!
Sign me up!

Since: May 08

Location hidden

#6 Sep 15, 2009
It would appear from our conversations with the Kalamazoo prosecutors this afternoon that this young man many sit in the youth home for as much as 9 more months... this was a plead deal, but the according to the prosecuting attorney the sentence is pretty much in line with the crime of assault in Michigan.

“We are the same...yet u H8 me”

Since: Jun 07

Los Angeles

#13 Sep 15, 2009
spartanman wrote:
<quoted text>
Take it from a straight person with gay friends, that your attitude will do nothing to help you gain acceptance or fair and equal treatment by the ignorant in society. Your statement reflects a mindset and tolerence that is no greater than that of the boys involved in perpetrating the violence on this young person. The fact that they are being prosecuted is evidence that our community as a whole will not tolerate this kind of behavior against ANYONE.
You're right of course. I was being flippantly sarcastic. When I read about stuff like that, it really makes my blood boil. But, just to have it out there, I am a non violent person, and advoacate violece towards none.

Since: Dec 08

Toronto, ON, Canada

#14 Sep 15, 2009
Given his age and the worthlessness of the US penal system as a reform mechanism, I would not necessarily want him to go to jail, but the sentence meted out does not really help with reform. Instead, the judge should have ordered him to spend 1000 hours working non-paid for a gay organization on reaching his 18th birthday when he could understand a bit more and then write a non-nonsensical 10,000 word essay about the experience. Also, while I realize the US criminal system is too stupid to work this way, the parents deserve much greater punishment. They should be required to pay 50% of their net worth, including valuated real estate, to the victim. If their net worth is negative, then their wages should be garnished by 50% for the remainder of their lives. Why does the US let parents of minor (I mean in age) criminals get off with nothing except the threat of a lawsuit? Americans don't respond to jail threats, they respond to loss of money. Heavy fines should be a medium for social reform.

Since: Dec 08

Toronto, ON, Canada

#15 Sep 15, 2009
PS: While the crime in this case is horrible, I am more angry at the people behind the perpetrator than the perpetrator himself. Kalamazoo is a backward piece of excrement full of dull stupid Dutch Reform Calvinists.

“Just another new age hippie.”

Since: Jul 09

Isleton, CA

#16 Sep 15, 2009
"You did what? Say you're sorry!"

That's what I get from this. Give me a freaking break! He was 16, he knew what he was doing, he knew it was wrong, he didn't care and exhibited hatred aimed at homosexuals - try him as an adult for a hate crime and throw him in a cell with a big guy named Bubba.

But here's where we need to do something with our penal system. John makes a very valid point. So, bring back the chain gangs. Bring back sentencing to however many months/years of hard labor.

Hey, we always need gravel for our highway system refurbishment, right? What's wrong with striped jumpsuited felons with ankle chains and sledgehammers turning big rocks into little rocks?

“Go MSU Spartans!”

Since: Oct 08

Kalamazoo, MI

#18 Sep 16, 2009
JohnInToronto wrote:
PS: While the crime in this case is horrible, I am more angry at the people behind the perpetrator than the perpetrator himself. Kalamazoo is a backward piece of excrement full of dull stupid Dutch Reform Calvinists.
John, what the hell do you really know about the Kalamazoo area? Kalamazoo is one of the most racially, culturally and socially diverse cities in the state (probably in the country). We have a strong presence in the arts and overall exhibit a friendly, tolerant attitude toward people of all backgrounds. Most of those Dutch Reformed people to which you refer live to the north and northwest of here in the Grand Rapids and Holland areas. If you are up in Toronto, I'd like to know what you are using as a basis for your statement. I defy you to go anywhere where there isn't a certain number of ignorant, intolerant people. You can't do it, so don't slam a city that excels far beyond most others when it comes to tolerance and diversity, because your ignorance is no better than that of the offenders.

By the way, my son is a grade behind this boy in the same school. This boy moved on to high school, but the conversations he had with others on his first day of school about this incident reflected shock and disapproval of these action.

Since: Dec 08

Toronto, ON, Canada

#19 Sep 16, 2009
spartanman wrote:
<quoted text>
John, what the hell do you really know about the Kalamazoo area? Kalamazoo is one of the most racially, culturally and socially diverse cities in the state (probably in the country). We have a strong presence in the arts and overall exhibit a friendly, tolerant attitude toward people of all backgrounds. Most of those Dutch Reformed people to which you refer live to the north and northwest of here in the Grand Rapids and Holland areas. If you are up in Toronto, I'd like to know what you are using as a basis for your statement. I defy you to go anywhere where there isn't a certain number of ignorant, intolerant people. You can't do it, so don't slam a city that excels far beyond most others when it comes to tolerance and diversity, because your ignorance is no better than that of the offenders.
By the way, my son is a grade behind this boy in the same school. This boy moved on to high school, but the conversations he had with others on his first day of school about this incident reflected shock and disapproval of these action.
I stand corrected about the Dutch Reformed. I have been through Kalamazoo when I lived in Chicago. However, if your city is so progressive, why didn't the judge treat this more seriously? The sentence was a slap on the wrist.

“Go MSU Spartans!”

Since: Oct 08

Kalamazoo, MI

#20 Sep 16, 2009
JohnInToronto wrote:
<quoted text>
I stand corrected about the Dutch Reformed. I have been through Kalamazoo when I lived in Chicago. However, if your city is so progressive, why didn't the judge treat this more seriously? The sentence was a slap on the wrist.
I would have to believe that the offender's age was taken into consideration. I don't consider up to 9 months in juvi a slap on the wrist. Something like that would have scared the hell out of me when I was that age. Let's hope it will him as well. At least he is young enough that this experience might make a difference in changing his attitude. Still, I'm sure there are plenty of you that would be satisfied with nothing less than keeping him in juvi until he's 18, then sending him up to the big house for the rest of his life.
Short Left Index Finger

Georgetown, Canada

#21 Sep 16, 2009
I sure wish that the Americam government would reinstate the draft,so that these straight warmongers can just go away any hopefully not come back.

Since: Dec 08

Toronto, ON, Canada

#22 Sep 16, 2009
spartanman wrote:
<quoted text>
I would have to believe that the offender's age was taken into consideration. I don't consider up to 9 months in juvi a slap on the wrist. Something like that would have scared the hell out of me when I was that age. Let's hope it will him as well. At least he is young enough that this experience might make a difference in changing his attitude. Still, I'm sure there are plenty of you that would be satisfied with nothing less than keeping him in juvi until he's 18, then sending him up to the big house for the rest of his life.
Read my previous post. I don't think he belongs in jail. I think the parents should be punished severely. The problem with the sentence is that it does nothing to address hate, only anger.

Since: Dec 08

Toronto, ON, Canada

#23 Sep 16, 2009
Short Left Index Finger wrote:
I sure wish that the Americam government would reinstate the draft,so that these straight warmongers can just go away any hopefully not come back.
If they did it would have to be after DADT were repealed. Otherwise, everyone would get of of the Army by just claiming they were gay. Before DADT they might have had to prove they were gay, but now they would be excused just by stating so. Actually DADT repeal would make an American draft much easier, should it be required. And remember that the quality of volunteers for the American army is much, much lower than those who volunteer for the Canadian services.

“We are the same...yet u H8 me”

Since: Jun 07

Los Angeles

#24 Sep 16, 2009
spartanman wrote:
<quoted text>
I would have to believe that the offender's age was taken into consideration. I don't consider up to 9 months in juvi a slap on the wrist. Something like that would have scared the hell out of me when I was that age. Let's hope it will him as well. At least he is young enough that this experience might make a difference in changing his attitude. Still, I'm sure there are plenty of you that would be satisfied with nothing less than keeping him in juvi until he's 18, then sending him up to the big house for the rest of his life.
I would have to say, speaking only for myself, I agree with you on the time served. For a minor it is a big deal. All I would want is the behavior to change. Failing that, then one would assume his actions would land him in more trouble. But, truth be told, I hope he gets it and UNDERSTANDS why what he did is wrong. There are so many people incarcerated that don't give a shit, they're just mad they got caught. I hope he isn't one of them.

“We're here! ”

Since: Apr 07

Location hidden

#25 Sep 17, 2009
This is really disturbing. Sure, he's afraid, just like the 15 yo that died while being beaten. I feel that this is nothing but a slap on the wrist. My husbands nephew was 16 and spent 7 months in jail for stealing, first offense, and the judicial system in K-zoo is giving the murderer 9 months? What the hell?

“Go MSU Spartans!”

Since: Oct 08

Kalamazoo, MI

#26 Sep 17, 2009
Mark in Caledonia MI wrote:
This is really disturbing. Sure, he's afraid, just like the 15 yo that died while being beaten. I feel that this is nothing but a slap on the wrist. My husbands nephew was 16 and spent 7 months in jail for stealing, first offense, and the judicial system in K-zoo is giving the murderer 9 months? What the hell?
Who was murdered?
Gretchen

Corona, CA

#27 Sep 17, 2009
fr spartanman:

>...By the way, my son is a grade behind this boy in the same school. This boy moved on to high school, but the conversations he had with others on his first day of school about this incident reflected shock and disapproval of these action. <

Which boy, the victim, or the slimebag who beat an innocent person?

“Go MSU Spartans!”

Since: Oct 08

Kalamazoo, MI

#28 Sep 17, 2009
Gretchen wrote:
fr spartanman:
>...By the way, my son is a grade behind this boy in the same school. This boy moved on to high school, but the conversations he had with others on his first day of school about this incident reflected shock and disapproval of these action. <
Which boy, the victim, or the slimebag who beat an innocent person?
Of course I was referring was to reaction toward the beating of an innocent person.
hartfordgurl

Kalamazoo, MI

#29 Sep 18, 2009
JohnInToronto wrote:
PS: While the crime in this case is horrible, I am more angry at the people behind the perpetrator than the perpetrator himself. Kalamazoo is a backward piece of excrement full of dull stupid Dutch Reform Calvinists.
YEP! Try Holland MI for a really great time >sarcasm<
Gretchen

United States

#30 Sep 18, 2009
fr hartfordgurl:

>YEP! Try Holland MI for a really great time >sarcasm< <

Holland is EXTREMELY anti-gay, and should be avoided like the plague.

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