A while back, I waxed all sympathetic about GIs getting what I assumed was all too needed special consideration for post-discharge, surely PTSD-based offenses. Now comes a Sacramento Bee year-long study of GI’s, ‘shell shock’, and crime. As usual, it’s far from a simple situation.
Read their findings here, here, here, and here.
Turns out that some of these supposedly-traumatized-by-war defendants had a ‘war or jail’ option, with serious charges hanging over their heads, and appear to have taken their criminal dispositions to war with them. Some of these folks had colorful rap sheets long before they ever donned combat boots. Of course, as Kathy Griffin would say: allegedly.
Surely, the programs I praised earlier are taking such factors into consideration in deciding how to deal with these vet offenders, but damn this makes things murky.
Kudos to prison shrink and columnist John Schwade for the hat tip.