One man's honest opinion about sports in the Motor City, and beyond.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Justice Served... To the wrong person.

Yesterday, the final punishment for the “Palace Brawl” was dealt. According to the Detroit News, John Green was sentenced to 30 days of work release, AA meetings, anger management classes, and 24 months of probation. What was his role in the ordeal? He threw the cup. Oddly, however, that was not the crime he was convicted for… He was convicted of misdemeanor assault and battery for punching Ron-Ron…

Honestly, this is ludicrous. I am not going to excuse Mr. Green's role in all of this. Yet, there is nothing that would make me believe justice, in any form, has been served.

I know it has been about a year and a half, but I feel it necessary to remind everyone of what Ron Artest did that night. HE RAN INTO THE CROWD AND PUNCHED A COMPLETE AND UTTERLY INNOCENT HUMAN BEING IN THE FACE!!! Did he receive any jail time? Of course not.

This makes me sick…. Absolutely sick. According to the article, Green was the only person who received jail time for their part in the brawl. How is that possible? What kind of legal precedent does this set?

According to The New York Times, "Green was the only person to take his case to trial. Green said he had hit Artest to defend himself and fellow fans. (AP)"

You could say that Green could have avoided all of this, by not taking it to trial... Which is probably true. But that doesn't make this right... I really believe Green's explanation of hitting Artest. Sure, he did quasi-start it by throwing the cup. But, it is a sporting event, and things like that happen ALL THE TIME. Usually the player shrugs it off, and the fan is escorted out of the stadium. The difference for this incident is Artest is a maniac. If you were sitting next to the person he attacked, and you weren't frozen by fear (which I'm pretty sure I would have been), you would have punched him too. Artest is crazy, and unusually large and strong for a human being (as most pro athletes are)... He needed to be restrained... and needed to go to jail. Instead, Green, will go for 30 days... His crime? Throwing a cup at a professional athlete during a sporting event... Which is obviously a much worse action than punching a random person in the face. Obviously.

Final Note: Artest was hit by a cup of water and jumped up and attacked an innocent person. He received no jail time. Someone who attempted to restrain Artest (by punching him) is going to serve 30 days. That is not right. The worst punishment handed out should have been to Artest… Without a doubt.



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