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Monday, July 23, 2012

Ind. Courts - Indiana inmate "Greg Ousley Is Sorry for Killing His Parents. Is That Enough?"

Yesterday's NY Times Magazine had a lengthy article by Scott Anderson titled "Greg Ousley Is Sorry for Killing His Parents. Is That Enough?." Ousley is in Westville for killing his parents at age 14; he has been there for 19 years. The article concludes:

Strong or not, Greg’s case is a telling one in the national debate over just what is accomplished by sentencing juveniles to long prison sentences. In the case of juvenile parricide, there is an added paradox. Because it is among the most target-specific of crimes, criminologists believe that an abused juvenile who killed a parent is likely to be at low risk of future criminality if he gets treatment and has a strong social support system when he is released. Certainly society might recoil at the notion that a child who murders his parents should be “let off” by a juvenile detention that might end at 18 or 21, but attached to this is the question of when the thirst for punishment becomes counterproductive to all concerned. After all, Greg Ousley, like 95 percent of other prison inmates, is going to come out some day, and is it better for society that he do so when he’s in his 30s and still has the potential of patching together a somewhat-normal life, or not until his 40s when his options will be far more limited?

This debate seems a long way off in Kosciusko County. In April 2010, two young boys from a rural corner of the county, Colt Lundy, 15, and Paul Gingerich, 12, shot to death Lundy’s stepfather, Phillip Danner. Days later, at the urging of the county prosecutor, Daniel Hampton, the boys’ cases were waived into the adult system, where, facing up to 65 years in prison, both entered plea agreements. On Jan. 4, 2011, almost 17 years to the day that Greg Ousley was sentenced in the same county courthouse, Paul Gingerich was sentenced to 25 years. Considered by prison officials to be too vulnerable for even the youth as adults wing of Wabash Valley prison, Gingerich is currently being temporarily housed at a juvenile facility. He is the youngest adult inmate in Indiana.

Although "his lawyer" is mentioned in the article, the attorney is not further identified.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on July 23, 2012 03:29 PM
Posted to Indiana Courts