Remind me again how justice was served?
OK, so let me get this straight. Ed Barber, Midlothian representative for the Chesterfield County Board of Supervisors, pleads guilty to lesser charges in the sexual battery of his teenage stepdaughter. He does so, he says, not because he is guilty but to spare his family the pain of a trial, yadda yadda yadda.
The special prosecutor expresses satisfaction that the victim has been spared the trauma of a trial, yadda yadda yadda, she has closure. Justice has been served!
The only thing that has been served here is that a case has been “closed” in the legal sense and the docket cleared. But how is justice really served? If Ed Barber is an innocent man -- as he has maintained all along (and I have no idea really, but if you were innocent of something so heinous as this would you ever consider pleading guilty?) -- but if he is innocent, his life is now in ruins. He has no job (he’s out at Crenshaw Elementary) and though he says he will hold onto his Supervisor seat the groundswell of disgust among Chesterfield voters suggests it’s just a matter of time before he steps down.
If he is guilty as charged, how in God’s good earth was justice served for that teenage girl? Just because she doesn’t have to endure the pain of a trial doesn’t mean the pain doesn’t go on. One report said the girl had kept a journal saying Barber had been touching her since she was 12. And to know the guy is walking around free when he should be in jail? … Well, how would you feel if you were her parents?
So again, I ask the question. How was justice served in all this?