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Colorado prosecutor showed off brake-shoe gift after helping convict 26-year-old trucker sentenced to 110 years for deadly crash

ZiprHead

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After a 26-year-old truck driver received a 110-year prison sentence for his role in a deadly crash, a Colorado prosecutor who helped convict him drew outrage for showing off a brake shoe she was gifted on social media.

Rogel Aguilera-Mederos, a 26-year-old truck driver who said his brakes failed during a 2019 crash that killed four people, was convicted on 27 counts in October. At Aguilera-Mederos' December 13 sentencing, Jefferson County District Judge A. Bruce Jones said state law required the sentences be served consecutively, leading to a 110-year prison term.

Kayla Wildeman, a Jefferson County deputy district attorney, was part of a team of prosecutors that helped convict Aguilera-Mederos. She posted a photo of a brake shoe from a semitrailer and an accompanying plaque on Facebook, according to KUSA, although it's unclear when she posted the photo. Wildeman's social-media pages have since been deactivated.

Wildeman said in her Facebook post that she received the brake shoe as a gift from Jared Maritsky, a fellow deputy district attorney, according to KUSA.
"To make any kind of mockery or behave as if this was a ball game of winning and losing is an outrage," Leonard Martinez, Aguilera-Mederos' attorney, said, as quoted by KMGH. "This was about four people losing their lives and another person facing the prospect of a 110-year prison sentence."

More than 3.7 million people have signed a petition asking Colorado Gov. Jared Polis to commute the sentence or grant Aguilera-Mederos clemency. A spokesperson for Polis previously told Insider's Connor Perrett that, "We are aware of this issue, the Governor and his team review each clemency application individually."
 

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I hope that didn't hurt the truck driver's feelings. People can be so reckless and uncaring.

As long as we ignore other people exist, like the families of the dead, your post is completely above board.
 

ZiprHead

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Losing brakes is a common problem in semis, especially in mountainous regions like Colorado. That's why they have truck runoff areas at the bottoms of hills and mountains. We have them here in the mountainous areas of north eastern lower Michigan.
 

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Losing brakes is a common problem in semis, especially in mountainous regions like Colorado. That's why they have truck runoff areas at the bottoms of hills and mountains. We have them here in the mountainous areas of north eastern lower Michigan.
What's amazing is the gallery of folks who is here in an instant to say they don't care that in addition to knowing that happened in their life and that they have to live with it in their lives, now has to also suffer for the rest of it seeing and knowing that history from the inside of a cell.

As if that makes anyone better.
 

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Apparently there are a lot of people upset with the length of the sentence.

The flapdoodle about the DA shows once again that people ought to pay a little more attention to what their post on Facebook. If the public does not think that DAs celebrate "big wins", they are pretty naive.
 

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Losing brakes is a common problem in semis, especially in mountainous regions like Colorado. That's why they have truck runoff areas at the bottoms of hills and mountains. We have them here in the mountainous areas of north eastern lower Michigan.
And this guy ignored at least one of these runoffs. Which is why the conviction is appropriate.
 

Derec

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Apparently there are a lot of people upset with the length of the sentence.
And they want Jared Polis to commute to time served. 110 years may be too long, but 2 years would be way too short. 20 years might be appropriate, but not 2.
Unfortunately, Polis is the type of woke idiot who just might give in to this demand.
 

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What's amazing is the gallery of folks who is here in an instant to say they don't care that in addition to knowing that happened in their life and that they have to live with it in their lives, now has to also suffer for the rest of it seeing and knowing that history from the inside of a cell.
As if that makes anyone better.
538.jpg
 

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I do NOT understand some of the comments in this thread. Isn't it obvious that killing by accident is completely different from killing for profit or killing due to hatred? Do I need to explain this?

Negligence is bad, and might merit punishment, but the negligence is the same whether he ended up killing 4 people, or 4 raccoons. (I did not read the story. Did he have a chance to veer off the road and kill himself instead of four innocents? That could be punishable but even that wouldn't change the fact that 100 years is a ridiculous sentence for this negligence.)

Contrast these killings with the killings by Kyle Rittenshit or George Zimmerfuk. Their deliberate evil should have been punished as "depraved heart" murders, yet I'll guess the "self-defense" murders they commited are condoned by some of the same people happy to see this truck driver spend his life in prison for an accident.
 

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Losing brakes is a common problem in semis, especially in mountainous regions like Colorado. That's why they have truck runoff areas at the bottoms of hills and mountains. We have them here in the mountainous areas of north eastern lower Michigan.
And this guy ignored at least one of these runoffs. Which is why the conviction is appropriate.
do you know he had brake problems when he passed that run off?

I don't think anyone is saying the conviction isn't appropriate. It's the sentencing that is wildly out of whack.

That, and the prosecutor displaying a brake shoe trophy is completely in poor taste and insensitive to both the victims and the defendant.
 

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I watched a video that showed him wrestling an out of control truck down the hill and he went right by the run-out. Dude was super at fault for not ditching somewhere rather than running straight into stopped traffic. 110 year sentence is most consistent with malice though. I'd wager he was panicked in his decisions. Maybe his failure to render aid was a factor in the sentence but I don't see malice in my limited knowledge. Looks like a young driver shitting himself ball-hooting down a hill in a truck that ain't got no brakes.

Responding to a couple of posts in the thread. The opening post critical of the prosecutor holding a trophy like the case was some sort of game is hardly absolving the driver or treating him like a victim. It is negative commentary on the conduct of the prosecution. This should be a case where justice is sought, not F'ing trophy hunting. Isn't any prize to be had here and the brake trophy is kind of fucked up.
 

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I watched a video that showed him wrestling an out of control truck down the hill and he went right by the run-out. Dude was super at fault for not ditching somewhere rather than running straight into stopped traffic. 110 year sentence is most consistent with malice though. I'd wager he was panicked in his decisions. Maybe his failure to render aid was a factor in the sentence. But, an opening post critical of the prosecutor holding a trophy like the case was some sort of game is hardly absolving the driver or treating him like a victim. It is negative commentary on the conduct of the prosecution. This is a case where justice is sought, not F'ing trophy hunting.
Agreed. Considering his age, he was probably quite an inexperienced truck driver. Trucking companies are scrambling to hire drivers and they'll take anyone they can get.

I don't get the "failure to render aid" part though. He's a truck driver, not an emt, and he had just been in a serious accident himself.
 

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Our legal processes are entirely rooted in an adversarial system of "winning or loosing" cases. That is how it works... Humans compete with each other as a matter of course of being human.. it is WHY our systems reward success and punish failure...
The prosecution "celebrating success" may or may not be socially appropriate as "good sportsmanship".. but it wholly and entirely normal human behavior.
The problem here is the prosecution feeling like an obviously inappropriate sentence is a "fair win" where "celebration" is "socially acceptable".
 

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I watched a video that showed him wrestling an out of control truck down the hill and he went right by the run-out. Dude was super at fault for not ditching somewhere rather than running straight into stopped traffic. 110 year sentence is most consistent with malice though. I'd wager he was panicked in his decisions. Maybe his failure to render aid was a factor in the sentence. But, an opening post critical of the prosecutor holding a trophy like the case was some sort of game is hardly absolving the driver or treating him like a victim. It is negative commentary on the conduct of the prosecution. This is a case where justice is sought, not F'ing trophy hunting.
Agreed. Considering his age, he was probably quite an inexperienced truck driver. Trucking companies are scrambling to hire drivers and they'll take anyone they can get.

I don't get the "failure to render aid" part though. He's a truck driver, not an emt, and he had just been in a serious accident himself.
"Failure to render aid" means not even pressing a few buttons on your phone and saying 'help'. No one is expected to be a hero... but doing at least slightly more than absolutely nothing is expected by the society you live in... and doing exactly nothing when a cell phone is in your pocket (or the absolute worst, it's in your hand and you are filming rather than calling 911), is a form of "Malice".
Doing nothing when calling for help is so trivially safe and easy is pretty much saying "I want you to die".
 

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I watched a video that showed him wrestling an out of control truck down the hill and he went right by the run-out. Dude was super at fault for not ditching somewhere rather than running straight into stopped traffic. 110 year sentence is most consistent with malice though. I'd wager he was panicked in his decisions. Maybe his failure to render aid was a factor in the sentence. But, an opening post critical of the prosecutor holding a trophy like the case was some sort of game is hardly absolving the driver or treating him like a victim. It is negative commentary on the conduct of the prosecution. This is a case where justice is sought, not F'ing trophy hunting.
Agreed. Considering his age, he was probably quite an inexperienced truck driver. Trucking companies are scrambling to hire drivers and they'll take anyone they can get.

I don't get the "failure to render aid" part though. He's a truck driver, not an emt, and he had just been in a serious accident himself.
"Failure to render aid" means not even pressing a few buttons on your phone and saying 'help'. No one is expected to be a hero... but doing at least slightly more than absolutely nothing is expected by the society you live in... and doing exactly nothing when a cell phone is in your pocket (or the absolute worst, it's in your hand and you are filming rather than calling 911), is a form of "Malice".
Doing nothing when calling for help is so trivially safe and easy is pretty much saying "I want you to die".
Did he have his phone? Sometimes those are lost in accidents—they fly out of windows or fall to the floor or under a seat. It’s quite likely that he was in shock.

The length of the sentence is far too long.
 

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The length of the sentence is far too long.
That's because the sentence was for another case.

There are always cases where people get upset about insufficiently long sentences. They'll rant about privilege and liberal judges and leftist agendas. Some post it here.

And someone campaigns to 'fix' such lawlessness in our once great legal system. And write laws to make sentences huge and mandatory, and unable to be served concurrently.
And the laws are passed because everyone has the last miscarriage of justice in mind. Not the next one.

Then prosecutor and judge have no options. But they're the ones everyone blames. Including the voters that literally asked for this....
 

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I don't think anyone is saying the conviction isn't appropriate. It's the sentencing that is wildly out of whack.

Exactly this.

He was operating a multi-ton missile under dangerous circumstances. His lack of judgment caused a gigantic disaster, which was avoidable.

But a 110 year sentence won't fix any vehicles or heal broken bones, much less bring back the dead loved ones. It looks entirely like a combination of naked vengeance and political opportunism to me.

As a hardcore Prolifer, I cannot find that morally acceptable. Life is more than mere survival. It's about treating people, with inherent worth and dignity, as people. The conviction is the correct response. The sentence is ridiculous.

Tom
 

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I have seen other things about this case--it seems he was knowingly pushing the limits well before the crash. This guy is not a victim.

I do agree the sentence is out of line, but that's what tends to happen when you won't take a plea bargain when the prosecution has you dead to rights. This is a problem with the sentencing system, not a problem with this case in particular.
 

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I do NOT understand some of the comments in this thread.
I do not understand what Jarhyn wrote in this thread, so I understand ...
Isn't it obvious that killing by accident is completely different from killing for profit or killing due to hatred? Do I need to explain this?
Yes, you do. Killing for money or due to hatred are not the only kinds of killing that are against the law.

Negligence is bad, and might merit punishment, but the negligence is the same whether he ended up killing 4 people, or 4 raccoons.
Negligence is obviously different when you end up killing several innocent people.

(I did not read the story.
You should read the story before commenting on a thread about it. Duh!

Did he have a chance to veer off the road and kill himself instead of four innocents? That could be punishable but even that wouldn't change the fact that 100 years is a ridiculous sentence for this negligence.)
He had a chance to use one of the truck runoff ramps he passed by. He did not even have to kill himself!
110 years is too long, but his supporters demand "time served", which is obviously too short.

Contrast these killings with the killings by Kyle Rittenshit or George Zimmerfuk. Their deliberate evil should have been punished as "depraved heart" murders, yet I'll guess the "self-defense" murders they commited are condoned by some of the same people happy to see this truck driver spend his life in prison for an accident.
Nice Kindergarten-level namecalling! These two cases were actual self defense and not really comparable to trucker boy.
 

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I don't think anyone is saying the conviction isn't appropriate. It's the sentencing that is wildly out of whack.

Exactly this.

He was operating a multi-ton missile under dangerous circumstances. His lack of judgment caused a gigantic disaster, which was avoidable.

But a 110 year sentence won't fix any vehicles or heal broken bones, much less bring back the dead loved ones. It looks entirely like a combination of naked vengeance and political opportunism to me.

As a hardcore Prolifer, I cannot find that morally acceptable. Life is more than mere survival. It's about treating people, with inherent worth and dignity, as people. The conviction is the correct response. The sentence is ridiculous.

Tom
It's less a matter of vengeance and political opportunism and more a matter of what happens under mandatory sentencing, which is how he ended up with a 110 year sentence.
 

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The similarities to this got me thinking...


Ethan Couch, whose trial for killing four people while driving drunk sparked widespread conversations about the privilege of being raised wealthy, was released from a Texas jail on Monday after nearly two years.

Mr. Couch, 20, became known as the “affluenza teen” after a psychologist suggested during his trial that growing up with money might have left him with psychological afflictions, too rich to tell right from wrong. He attracted further attention when he and his mother, Tonya Couch, fled to Mexico in an effort to evade possible jail time.

He served his 720-day sentence in a jail in Tarrant County, and was freed about a week before his 21st birthday.
 

Toni

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I do NOT understand some of the comments in this thread.
I do not understand what Jarhyn wrote in this thread, so I understand ...
Isn't it obvious that killing by accident is completely different from killing for profit or killing due to hatred? Do I need to explain this?
Yes, you do. Killing for money or due to hatred are not the only kinds of killing that are against the law.

Negligence is bad, and might merit punishment, but the negligence is the same whether he ended up killing 4 people, or 4 raccoons.
Negligence is obviously different when you end up killing several innocent people.

(I did not read the story.
You should read the story before commenting on a thread about it. Duh!

Did he have a chance to veer off the road and kill himself instead of four innocents? That could be punishable but even that wouldn't change the fact that 100 years is a ridiculous sentence for this negligence.)
He had a chance to use one of the truck runoff ramps he passed by. He did not even have to kill himself!
110 years is too long, but his supporters demand "time served", which is obviously too short.

Contrast these killings with the killings by Kyle Rittenshit or George Zimmerfuk. Their deliberate evil should have been punished as "depraved heart" murders, yet I'll guess the "self-defense" murders they commited are condoned by some of the same people happy to see this truck driver spend his life in prison for an accident.
Nice Kindergarten-level namecalling! These two cases were actual self defense and not really comparable to trucker boy.
It's almost certain that he did not register that he had a chance to use the runoff ramp. He surely was panicked. I would have been.

There's mention of him not using his phone to call for help (after the accident) but no condemnation when other bystanders simply filmed, rather than calling for help or attempting to help themselves. I think he was panicked and probably in shock. And so were the bystanders in shock. It was a horrific accident. No amount of punishment will mend the lives that were destroyed. That said, I think the mandatory sentencing resulted in excessive length of sentence.
 

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Isn't it obvious that killing by accident is completely different from killing for profit or killing due to hatred? Do I need to explain this?
Yes, you do. Killing for money or due to hatred are not the only kinds of killing that are against the law.
I don't know whether to suggest a course in logic, or what. "If two things share an attribute then they are not quite different."
'December' and 'cheese' are each spelled with two E's; are they the same?

[similar gibberish]

In some of your posts you seem almost intelligent.. But all too often your posts seem almost stupid.
 

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do you know he had brake problems when he passed that run off?
All the reporting I have seen says as much.

I don't think anyone is saying the conviction isn't appropriate. It's the sentencing that is wildly out of whack.

The activists are pushing Jared Polis to commute his sentence to "time served". That is obviously grossly insufficient.
League of United Latin American Citizens meets with Gov. Polis to discuss clemency for Aguilera-Mederos
Fox31 said:
More than 4.6 million people have signed a petition asking Colorado Governor Jared Polis to offer commutation as time served, or grant clemency.

some Latin-American race group said:
Race and ethnic background should not play a role in our criminal court system. Justice in America should be color blind!
Of course race and ethnic background should not matter one way or the other. Mandatory minimums apply to everybody He should not get a short sentence just because he is hispanic!

That, and the prosecutor displaying a brake shoe trophy is completely in poor taste and insensitive to both the victims and the defendant.
I do not see a big problem with it, but then again I think our society has become hypersensitive in many areas.
 

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The similarities to this got me thinking...


Ethan Couch, whose trial for killing four people while driving drunk sparked widespread conversations about the privilege of being raised wealthy, was released from a Texas jail on Monday after nearly two years.

Mr. Couch, 20, became known as the “affluenza teen” after a psychologist suggested during his trial that growing up with money might have left him with psychological afflictions, too rich to tell right from wrong. He attracted further attention when he and his mother, Tonya Couch, fled to Mexico in an effort to evade possible jail time.

He served his 720-day sentence in a jail in Tarrant County, and was freed about a week before his 21st birthday.
Yeah, I wonder what the differences were. Aside from jurisdiction, wealth and...race. And the fact that Aguelira-Menderos was a professional truck driver, so supposedly trained and competent to drive the rig that he was driving.
 

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The similarities to this got me thinking...
Not to many similarities. Ethan was a minor, Rogel a fully grown adult. Rogel was also a professional driver.
While Ethan Couch should have served some time in jail, Rogel Whatshisface is far more culpable and should serve a significant time in prison.
 

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And the fact that Aguelira-Menderos was a professional truck driver, so supposedly trained and competent to drive the rig that he was driving.
Bingo! Also the fact that Rogel A-M was an adult when this happened and Ethan Couch was a minor.

This is not about race, except for the hispanic pressure groups who are trying to have RAM get away with his crimes simply because of his politically correct ancestry.
 

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Yes, you do. Killing for money or due to hatred are not the only kinds of killing that are against the law.
I don't know whether to suggest a course in logic, or what. "If two things share an attribute then they are not quite different."
'December' and 'cheese' are each spelled with two E's; are they the same?

RelievedFearfulBlackfootedferret-size_restricted.gif
 

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It's almost certain that he did not register that he had a chance to use the runoff ramp. He surely was panicked. I would have been.
Well, that's on him. His poor judgment and lack of composure cost four innocent people their lives and injured several others.

That said, I think the mandatory sentencing resulted in excessive length of sentence.
But some serious punishment is in order. "Time served" is not an appropriate sentence here!
 

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The similarities to this got me thinking...
Not to many similarities. Ethan was a minor, Rogel a fully grown adult. Rogel was also a professional driver.
While Ethan Couch should have served some time in jail, Rogel Whatshisface is far more culpable and should serve a significant time in prison.
It really doesn't take much in training to become a truck driver. Our local school advertises 40 hours classroom and 120 hours behind the wheel. That's a scant 4 weeks full time. And I see nowhere in the area where they can practice handling a truck with bad brakes heading down a hill. We're as flat here as your ten year old niece.
 

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It really doesn't take much in training to become a truck driver. Our local school advertises 40 hours classroom and 120 hours behind the wheel.
That's more or less professional driving training than Ethan Couch got? Or else, why the comparison with him?

Also, how much time do you think trucker boy should get? Do you agree with those who say that because he is hispanic, he should get away with "time served"?
And what about when he leaves prison, which could be very soon. Should he pay restitution to the people he killed and injured? Or should be get away pretty much scot free?
 

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It really doesn't take much in training to become a truck driver. Our local school advertises 40 hours classroom and 120 hours behind the wheel.
That's more or less professional driving training than Ethan Couch got? Or else, why the comparison with him?
For the comparison of the sentences, of course.
Also, how much time do you think trucker boy should get? Do you agree with those who say that because he is hispanic, he should get away with "time served"?
No, I do not.

You mentioned twenty years. What makes you think that's appropriate?
And what about when he leaves prison, which could be very soon. Should he pay restitution to the people he killed and injured? Or should be get away pretty much scot free?
The trucking company he worked for will surely be paying those people out of their liability insurance.

And no one said anything about getting off scot free.
 

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Even a driver in a vehicle behind the truck realized he should have taken the runoff ramp.

So why didn't RAM?
 

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For the comparison of the sentences, of course.
But they are not really comparable. An adult professional driver vs. a minor who is a rank amateur.

No, I do not.
So, how much time do you think is appropriate?

You mentioned twenty years. What makes you think that's appropriate?
Severity of the negligent behavior and also the severity of the consequences. He not only killed four people but also injured numerous others.

By the way, do we know what led to brake failure? A purely mechanical failure or driver error? Was he in low gear when brakes failed or was he relying on brakes only to slow him down and predictably overheating them? Do trucks like that have black boxes to record speed, gear, throttle, brake, and steering input?

The trucking company he worked for will surely be paying those people out of their liability insurance.
I also think some personal restitution is in order. He killed them, not the company.

And no one said anything about getting off scot free.
All those millions signing petition demanding "time served" are basically demanding that. He was out on bail, so "time served" is not very long. Scot free when rounded down.
 

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And the fact that Aguelira-Menderos was a professional truck driver, so supposedly trained and competent to drive the rig that he was driving.
Bingo! Also the fact that Rogel A-M was an adult when this happened and Ethan Couch was a minor.

This is not about race, except for the hispanic pressure groups who are trying to have RAM get away with his crimes simply because of his politically correct ancestry.
Oh, I think it is about race. And class and weath disparities. That said, these crashes happened in two different states, with two days deferent sets of laws, two different trials and juries. There is no way to compare these one to one.
 

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It's almost certain that he did not register that he had a chance to use the runoff ramp. He surely was panicked. I would have been.
Well, that's on him. His poor judgment and lack of composure cost four innocent people their lives and injured several others.

That said, I think the mandatory sentencing resulted in excessive length of sentence.
But some serious punishment is in order. "Time served" is not an appropriate sentence here!
At his age, he could not have been a very experienced rig driver. And who knows how one will behave in an emergency. He may not have seen the runoff in time or may not have thought he could effect the maneuver. Or he may have simply panicked.

Maybe you’ve never made a driving error. I have and I’m grateful no one was hurt.
 

Derec

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Crowd demands Governor Pontius Pilate Jared Polis release Rogel, ca. 2021, colorized.
 

Derec

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At his age, he could not have been a very experienced rig driver. And who knows how one will behave in an emergency.
No matter how inexperienced, he acted completely recklessly. Even the people behind him on the road knew he should have taken that off-ramp. So what's his excuse?
He may not have seen the runoff in time or may not have thought he could effect the maneuver. Or he may have simply panicked.
There was a big-ass sign saying "runaway truck ramp 2000 ft". He had plenty of time to react. Also, there is no indication that the maneuver to gently veer right onto the ramp could not be effected. Have you even watched the video? Instead of going right, he swerves left across lanes, almost collecting a white pickup truck in the process.

Maybe you’ve never made a driving error. I have and I’m grateful no one was hurt.
I am not a professional driver, but no. Nothing like this. And I always downshift on long grades.
 

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At his age, he could not have been a very experienced rig driver. And who knows how one will behave in an emergency.
No matter how inexperienced, he acted completely recklessly. Even the people behind him on the road knew he should have taken that off-ramp. So what's his excuse?
He may not have seen the runoff in time or may not have thought he could effect the maneuver. Or he may have simply panicked.
There was a big-ass sign saying "runaway truck ramp 2000 ft". He had plenty of time to react. Also, there is no indication that the maneuver to gently veer right onto the ramp could not be effected. Have you even watched the video? Instead of going right, he swerves left across lanes, almost collecting a white pickup truck in the process.

Maybe you’ve never made a driving error. I have and I’m grateful no one was hurt.
I am not a professional driver, but no. Nothing like this. And I always downshift on long grades.
I’m just saying that it easy to see what someone else should have done. It’s harder in that moment. No one was in the cab with him. I don’t believe that there was any evidence that he was distracted by his phone, or under the influence of any substance or sleep deprived. He made a terrible error. It cost people lives and grace injuries. He does deserve to pay for such a terrible error but 110 years is excessive.
 

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At his age, he could not have been a very experienced rig driver. And who knows how one will behave in an emergency.
No matter how inexperienced, he acted completely recklessly. Even the people behind him on the road knew he should have taken that off-ramp. So what's his excuse?
He may not have seen the runoff in time or may not have thought he could effect the maneuver. Or he may have simply panicked.
There was a big-ass sign saying "runaway truck ramp 2000 ft". He had plenty of time to react. Also, there is no indication that the maneuver to gently veer right onto the ramp could not be effected. Have you even watched the video? Instead of going right, he swerves left across lanes, almost collecting a white pickup truck in the process.

Maybe you’ve never made a driving error. I have and I’m grateful no one was hurt.
I am not a professional driver, but no. Nothing like this. And I always downshift on long grades.
I’m just saying that it easy to see what someone else should have done. It’s harder in that moment. No one was in the cab with him. I don’t believe that there was any evidence that he was distracted by his phone, or under the influence of any substance or sleep deprived. He made a terrible error. It cost people lives and grace injuries. He does deserve to pay for such a terrible error but 110 years is excessive.
Don't you find it a bit fascinating that someone can argue that this Hispanic driver deserves a 110 year sentence for making a deadly split second mistake, but that a white police officer who also makes a deadly split second mistake deserves no conviction or sentence?
 

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I don't think anyone is saying the conviction isn't appropriate. It's the sentencing that is wildly out of whack.

Exactly this.

He was operating a multi-ton missile under dangerous circumstances. His lack of judgment caused a gigantic disaster, which was avoidable.

But a 110 year sentence won't fix any vehicles or heal broken bones, much less bring back the dead loved ones. It looks entirely like a combination of naked vengeance and political opportunism to me.

As a hardcore Prolifer, I cannot find that morally acceptable. Life is more than mere survival. It's about treating people, with inherent worth and dignity, as people. The conviction is the correct response. The sentence is ridiculous.

Tom
It's less a matter of vengeance and political opportunism and more a matter of what happens under mandatory sentencing, which is how he ended up with a 110 year sentence.

This is the kind of detail that leaves me unwilling to hold a firm opinion, in more than a broad brushstrokes sort of way.
Someone else mentioned "plea deals". Did he choose against a reasonable outcome, leaving him risking this massively disproportionate sentence? I dunno. If he did, did he have a good lawyer? Capable of getting across to him the chance he was taking by turning down a 5 year sentence plea deal? I dunno. Did the prosecutor have an election coming up, and wanted a "tough on crime, especially those Hispanics" scalp on his belt? I dunno.

To many important details to form a firm opinion, about this particular event, if you don't trust the media to be accurate, precise, and complete. Which I do not.
Tom
 

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I don't think anyone is saying the conviction isn't appropriate. It's the sentencing that is wildly out of whack.

Exactly this.

He was operating a multi-ton missile under dangerous circumstances. His lack of judgment caused a gigantic disaster, which was avoidable.

But a 110 year sentence won't fix any vehicles or heal broken bones, much less bring back the dead loved ones. It looks entirely like a combination of naked vengeance and political opportunism to me.

As a hardcore Prolifer, I cannot find that morally acceptable. Life is more than mere survival. It's about treating people, with inherent worth and dignity, as people. The conviction is the correct response. The sentence is ridiculous.

Tom
It's less a matter of vengeance and political opportunism and more a matter of what happens under mandatory sentencing, which is how he ended up with a 110 year sentence.

This is the kind of detail that leaves me unwilling to hold a firm opinion, in more than a broad brushstrokes sort of way.
Someone else mentioned "plea deals". Did he choose against a reasonable outcome, leaving him risking this massively disproportionate sentence? I dunno. If he did, did he have a good lawyer? Capable of getting across to him the chance he was taking by turning down a 5 year sentence plea deal? I dunno. Did the prosecutor have an election coming up, and wanted a "tough on crime, especially those Hispanics" scalp on his belt? I dunno.

To many important details to form a firm opinion, about this particular event, if you don't trust the media to be accurate, precise, and complete. Which I do not.
Tom
It was the mandatory sentencing guidelines that got him the 110 year sentence. Every sentence to be served consecutively.
 

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It was the mandatory sentencing guidelines that got him the 110 year sentence. Every sentence to be served consecutively.


Possible, but it seems implausible. Was trucker dude never offered a plea deal? A deal that didn't involve a trial and the "mandatory sentencing"?

Maybe so. Doesn't seem reasonable, but maybe so. We do live in a country I consider borderline schizophrenic. Quite capable of believing and acting, as a society, in multiple ways. Ways that are mutually exclusive, but still considered true and crucially important.

We are a nation of immigrants. It made us great.
We must stop immigrants. They don't belong here.

Tom
 

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Possible, but it seems implausible. Was trucker dude never offered a plea deal? A deal that didn't involve a trial and the "mandatory sentencing"?
I do not know why you find that implausible. The judge said himself that he was forced by Colorado sentencing rules to impose 110 years because each sentence had to run consecutively and there were a lot of counts.
And yes, he was offered a plea deal and plea deals can circumvent such minimums.
Rogel Aguilera-Mederos Rejected a Plea Deal. So He Got 110 Years in Prison.

I do not agree with this author. If prosecutors could not offer lesser charges/penalties as part of a plea deal hardly anybody would plead guilty.
Maybe so. Doesn't seem reasonable, but maybe so. We do live in a country I consider borderline schizophrenic. Quite capable of believing and acting, as a society, in multiple ways. Ways that are mutually exclusive, but still considered true and crucially important.
???
We are a nation of immigrants. It made us great.
We must stop immigrants. They don't belong here.
Not all immigrants are good. Not all levels of immigration are good. It's not either or.
These absolutist statements about closing US to all immigration on one extreme or open borders on the other are both idiotic. Although I never see the former position in stated seriously, but the latter is very common in certain circles.
And RAM should not get a slap on the wrist just because he is an immigrant either.
 

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Someone else mentioned "plea deals". Did he choose against a reasonable outcome, leaving him risking this massively disproportionate sentence?
Yes, he rejected anything bigger than a traffic ticket.
I dunno. If he did, did he have a good lawyer?
The lawyer is good at drumming up public support at least. It's politics at this point, not law.
 
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