Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Forgetting the names, remembering a bank robber

THIS IS AN interesting story, especially because it's about a convicted felon and bank robber.

The Herald-Whig did a feature about a Mendon man who had a heart condition and had it fixed. The man's life is so much better now. Well, that's good. Click here for the story.

Here's my issue with it - the man robbed an area bank a few years ago. It was a bizarre and You Can't Make It Up story. He got a seven-year sentence but served a fraction of the time - after all, he was old and sick. He also pleaded guilty to theft, something to do with his former insurance business.

I'll never forget seeing the man out and about just a short time after he was sentenced to prison. And not long ago, he actually came into the store peddling an energy plan or something like that.

So. At what point do you say, "You know, the guy has reformed, leave him alone. Besides, this story about his heart condition has nothing to do with his past."

Good points. I'm human and screw up all the time, though I've never been sent to prison for anything - yet.

And I'm sure the Whig reporter, a name I don't recognize, had no idea about his past.

I just tend to think about the poor bank tellers and all the hard work the local authorities had to do to get this guy and put him away.

But really, I can't cast stones.

I still wake up with nightmares from the time I wrote a column about a guy who had died. He was a trucker, and his family honored him by putting his casket on a car trailer and driving it to the cemetery.

His daughter called me and I thought it was a nice little tribute and good column, until, with horror, I realized a few days later that I'd written about him before. It took some prodding, but I remembered his sentencing for molesting a young family member.

I hung my head for months.

I think part of it was that I saw so many awful things and deplorable people. More than a decade of covering crime and courts forced me to build walls and learn to block things out.

Of course, some names and events I won't forget.

Like the bank robber who has a fixed heart and is feeling a lot better.


  1. Bank wobbas? Bank wobbas is baby-shit alongside a what this dude is doin!

  2. You must be obsessed with Mr. O. You are throwing stones and rude. Why don't you talk down about all the heads of Quincy that stood up for the man in court?? if you reported this way while you were a journalist then you are not much of one journalist. Maybe someone should speak to your family and friends and find out your missdeeds and talk crap about you.

    1. Rodney and I agree with you completely! He's done some strange shit. Too bad none of it was a felony. hahahahahaha

  3. Damn Hart, you got an axe to grind with this guy? He broke the law, got caught, did his time and was released by the State of Illinois albeit early. I always thought there was more "live and let live" in your core that leaning on this man the way you are. Not a very Christian thing to do, or is there more to it. The one thing I can say is you will reap what you sow eventually and I hope the day never comes that you have done something that causes another person to lean on you this way.

  4. Ah yes, playing the old "Christian thing to do" card. Phew! I can click that one off the bucket list. My views are too skewered from sitting in courtrooms and seeing the system at work, I guess.