The Right Coast

March 18, 2005
Our Criminal Justice System
By Mike Rappaport

The circumstances involving John Evander Couey, the man who confessed to killing 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford, do not inspire confidence in our criminal justice system. Consider these facts from CNN and Fox:

"Couey's criminal history, spanning more than three decades and 24 arrests, includes multiple arrests for burglary, carrying a concealed weapon, indecent exposure, disorderly conduct, larceny and drug charges."

Couey pleaded guilty to 1991 felony charges of sex offense against a child, fondling a child under age 16 and lewd and lascivious conduct in Kissimmee; he was convicted of indecent exposure in 1987, according to records from the sheriff's office.

"There also was an August 2004 outstanding warrant for Couey for violating probation because of alleged marijuana possession."

"During a house burglary in 1978, Couey was accused of grabbing a girl in her bedroom, placing his hand over her mouth and kissing her, Dawsy said. Couey was sentenced to 10 years in prison but was paroled in 1980."

"Couey has absconded more than once."