Editorial: Justice for Johanna

Cleveland, OH - There has been community-wide outrage in the past week over the decision by a Cuyahoga County juvenile court Magistrate not to incarcerate a 17-year old punk charged with raping his girlfriend.   He's a bad young man who days later tracked down the girl and shot her in the face with a shotgun.

The community outrage is justifiable and we join others who have called for the resignation of Laura Williams, the magistrate who determined that young Juan Ruiz was harmless enough to be placed on home detention with an ankle bracelet.

Yeah, he was harmless all right. But we'll go a step further and call for a serious review of the entire juvenile court system. Such an investigation is in order if only because Magistrate Williams and the county juvenile court administrator both continue to defend the Ruiz decision - utilizing one lame excuse after the other.

There are no valid excuses. An 18-year-old girl is alive but possibly maimed for life because of a decision that should have been a no-brainer. Young Ruiz had a previous arrest record; he stood accused of a violent rape. He should have been sent to the county lockup. Instead, he was merely sent to his room.