I think most of us have been guilty of doing more excessive speeding on backroads than 15-20 over, but NOT THROUGH A STOP SIGN!! This guy needs to spend 10-15 years in jail for 2nd degree manslaughter.
MO may not be interested in this idea, but some of you MOrons may be. It could be helpful to send a letter to the State's Attorney's office for Moody County, informing them that there is a national constituency keeping an eye on how they handle the case--namely, us.
I know it isn't MO's MO to act as an advocacy group, but this forum is sort of a built-in caucus. It wouldn't kill MO to send off a letter, indicating the breadth of its subscriber list (you might want to emphasize geographic reach over sheer numbers *wink*), with special note made of our membership in South Dakota, and saying that we're all watching closely to see that justice is upheld to the extent the law allows. And that we'll be publishing updates of their actions in an online magazine with a national readership of "x" motorcyclists.
I mention this because I get nervous when law enforcement says "we're going to take our time on this," particularly when there is a public official involved. (See State's Attorney Ellingson saying that the "process cannot and should not be rushed.") I always worry that that means they'll wait long enough for the initial press blitz to die down, then quietly announce that there isn't enough evidence to proceed and drop the case. Unless our brother Mr. Scott is wealthy (dollars to donuts he ain't), his family likely will not bring a civil action, and probably lacks the public weight to push local law enforcement. Plus, Scott was from Minnesota--no local pull. Recall how powerful local political machines can be in small-population areas and out-of-the-limelight states.
People have already mentioned the incredible duplicity and hypocrisy the great state of Tennessee displayed just a few years ago. Wouldn't be tragic if we wound up with a Congressman Janklow Memorial Stop Sign in Moody County, South Dakota? Let's put our (admittedly limited) weight behind Mr. Scott and his family.
A letter from even one group of motorcyclists reminding the local muckety-mucks that people are watching can only help.
I think that's a great idea! I went on AMA's website and they have a blurb about "monitoring" the investigation, but have not as yet put the accident on their "rapid response" center. Since there is nothing on the representative's website regarding the accident, one can only assume his spin doctors have not figured out how to polish this to Jankow's advantage. I don't want the guy strung up just because he is a representative, but I do want him treated as we would be treated if we were driving that cage. Probably wishfull thinking.
Has this even made the mainstream media yet. I have not seen any report of this on cnn/foxnews/cbs/abc/nbc. I understand this bugging us, but it is a House representative that has killed someone. I would think that it would get some coverage.
Got some feedback on my letter suggestion, curious about email addresses for the concerned parties. I wasn't able to scare up much in the way of contacts for email, but the South Dakota State Attorney General's Office may be contacted at "[email protected]".
Any MOron (or anyone else) who wishes to may email his/her opinion on the incident, but I still think a letter from MO itself would add some weight. Still, individual letters (provided they're rational and not hyperventilating) can't hurt.
"CONGRESSMAN LIKELY TO FACE FELONY CHARGE FOR FATAL CRASH. Prosecutors in South Dakota announced Tuesday that their initial investigation established that Congressman Bill Janklow (R-SD) was responsible for the weekend traffic accident that left a motorcyclist dead. Moody County State's Attorney William Ellingson said that Janklow caused the accident by running a stop sign. Initial reports indicate that Janklow -- who had an extensive history of speeding tickets during his years as Governor -- was also likely speeding at the time of the accident. The SD State Highway Patrol accident report -- delivered to Ellingson late Wednesday -- included accident reconstruction evidence alleging that Janklow's vehicle was operating at nearly 20 miles over the speed limit at the time of impact. Ellingson again emphasized that he would thoroughly review the report before determining whether to seek criminal charges. Legal experts believe Janklow will be charged with second-degree manslaughter, a felony which carries a maximum sentence of ten years in state prison. Janklow's office also confirmed to the media that the Congressman expects criminal charges will be filed against him."
The USA Today article indicates that our boy wasn't wearing a helmet--certainly more fodder for the apologists--and that the bike struck the rear driver's side door of the car.
Plus--and who knew?--apparently Cadillacs have a "black box" that records, among other things, the speed of travel and whether you applied the brakes. Memo to self: your car is spying on you; ride the bike.
"...Russ Janklow said his family realizes that if the motorcycle had struck the car slightly ahead of where it did, his father may have been killed as well.
"Two more feet ... my dad wouldn't be here today," he said."
Janklow's death would have been the only consolation out of this tragic, unnecessary and entirely avoidable murder. Are we supposed to feel fortunate that this poor excuse for a human being survived? I want to puke!
Wow, just read the article in the Argus Leader. It sounds like a car ahead of him stopped at the stop sign to wait for the bike, when Janklow, speeding, decided to pull a real classy move and pass the stopped vehicle at a blind intersection at 80 mph. Reckless to say the least.
I'm not defending Kanklow by any stretch of the imagination-----but you can bet that if this was Tom Daschle you wouldn't hear a peep about this from the Argus Leader. The only reason you're hearing the details that impugn Janklow is because he has an (R) next to his name.