By Arlene Jones
Losing a loved one is hard. Losing a loved one to the senseless violence that occurs in this city is even harder. Almost as hard, for me, is watching the living, especially the activists, attempt to gain some sort of momentum for their agenda from the death.
Take the case of Marlen Ochoa. She was the young pregnant teenager who was lured to a house in search of free baby items. Once there, she was strangled, killed, and the baby that she carried was cut from her womb. That was a horrific crime for sure. But as I followed the news about the murder, the husband although thankful that the Chicago Police Department had solved the crime, began to blame "anti-immigration laws" as the reason that CPD took three weeks to solve the case. I am grateful that Superintendent Eddie Johnson responded that solving a murder is not like a television show. And Chicago has myriad murder cases that the detectives have to investigate. While the superintendent didn't say so, the reality is that language barriers require translators. Thus the detectives are not hearing the subtle verbal nuances that they would pick up on if both people were speaking the same language.
The family of Ochoa also want a law that would have any baby born at home DNA tested against the mother. My question is: If the baby never needed hospitalization how does it get enforced?
What I do agree with, and stand in agreement with the family, is their call for the reinstatement of the death penalty. The heinous crime perpetrated on Ochoa calls for the ultimate penalty to be paid by the perpetrators
Austin had its own heinous crime of late in the murder of Brittany Hill. She's the young mother holding her daughter who was gunned down by what turned out to be an uncle and his nephew who traveled all the way here from Urbana to commit carnage.
Hill's family recently held a press conference announcing they were suing CPD because of the unauthorized release of the video of the murder. Anybody who has seen the video, and I admit I have, will have a number of questions that automatically pop up. Those questions, if pursued, can lead to some answers that certain people may not want to give or admit.
Amazingly during the press conference, Hill's father says he forgives the killers. I was astonished at such forgiveness, which occurred even before Hill has been buried. Even more, before the trial has happened where we could learn exactly why those men came all the way to the West Side of Chicago at such an early hour to allegedly commit the crime of which they are accused.
Two horrific murders and two very different agendas from the families. It's going to be interesting to see which family prevails with their agenda.
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