Editorial: Slap on the wrist in artifact theft case
"We do not often criticize the decisions of judges in criminal cases. For the most part, there is little cause to do so. That is because, in case after case, they exercise the power of their office to fairly apply the law and thus satisfy the demands of justice.

There are exceptions. Like all humans, judges are fallible. Only rarely, though, can a jurist be faulted for giving preferential treatment to an admitted felon. It is for that cause that we are compelled to condemn U.S. District Judge Clark Waddoups' decision to assign no prison time to the first two defendants in a string of cases brought by the government against traffickers in ancient American Indian artifacts.

Waddoups, choosing to ignore federal sentencing guidelines and the reasonable recommendation of federal prosecutors, gave three years probation and a $2,000 fine to Blanding resident Jeanne Redd. She had pleaded guilty to seven felonies. Her daughter Jericca pleaded guilty to three, and got two years probation and a $300 fine.

Between them, the Redds forfeited 812 artifacts, including human remains, stone tools, ceramic bowls and sacred funerary objects plundered from federal land in the Four Corners region."

Get the Story:
Editorial: Misplaced mercy (The Salt Lake Tribune 9/21)

Another Opinion:
Malin Foster: Subtle racism (The Salt Lake Tribune 9/24)

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