Our entire legal system is predicated on the concept that people are innocent until proven guilty. However, there are times when we don’t actually act that way, and for pretty good reason. For example, if someone is a flight risk, they likely will be held in jail so they will actually face trial. The phrase “innocent until proven guilty” only goes so far in our legal system, after all.
An accused Texas killer’s case brings up an interesting example. After all, he met the one million dollar bond the judge laid on him, but he’s still not out of jail to await trial. Why? He’s got guns.
A cache of guns is keeping a murder suspect in jail, even though he has posted a $1 million bond.
Court records show 33-year-old Andrew Beard came up with the bond just days after his arrest last week. But today a judge signed an order holding the bond insufficient after police disclosed Beard has 18 firearms in his Rowlett home.
Former prosecutor Toby Shook says the guns have to go before Beard can get out.
Now, Beard is accused of murder, which is a serious crime. Police say he wore blackface and a fake beard when he killed 24-year-old Alyssa Burkett, the mother of his one-year-old child. In other words, he allegedly gunned down the mother of his own child.
So, the judge handed him a massive bond.
Well, Beard met it, but now because of those guns at home, he still can’t get out.
One one hand, I see the judge’s point. This is a man accused of a fairly heinous crime and so sending him home where he’s got access to firearms may represent something of a problem.
However, the bigger point here is that Beard hasn’t been convicted of any crime. He’s only accused of a crime, which isn’t remotely the same thing. Plenty of people have been accused of a crime, only for it to be found out later they didn’t do it. Are we going to restrict people’s Second Amendment rights based on an accusation?
That said, judges often restrict the rights of people accused of crimes until after their trial is over. Their movement is restricted and sometimes they’re even on house arrest as they await their day in court.
I honestly don’t know on this one.
Beard maintains his rights until and unless he’s convicted, but does the judge have a point here? I mean, this is someone accused of shooting a woman in cold blood. If he has access to guns and no restriction on his movement, will he kill again?
For me, though, this is more of an academic interest. I don’t give a damn if Beard has his rights at the moment or not, except in an abstract sense. If he did this particular crime, I want him to rot in prison until they stick a needle in his arm and put him out of our misery. The problem is that if they can do this to him, they might do it to me and do it for a crime I didn’t commit.
It should be interesting to see how this proceeds.