|Bradford W. Bailey|
This is another prime example of why criminal records should be offline, because people will exploit those records for their own benefit. Pretty soon, everybody will be on some form of registry, and people will continue to make money from those records, until enough people and the so called "organizations" out there who claim to fight for our rights, start actually doing so.
By Holly Zachariah
KENTON - The faces of the drug dealers go scrolling by with the click of a mouse.
There’s a girl with a nose ring as big as a quarter, dudes with neck tattoos, an old man in glasses, and moms with frosted-tip hair. There’s even a father-son duo.
Some sold marijuana in front of a school; others trafficked heroin from their homes. One cooked meth in his kitchen.
Their stories differ, but the 192 faces on the website of Hardin County Prosecutor Bradford Bailey have one thing in common: Each sold drugs, and each has been convicted of a felony because of it.
Bailey said people should know who these dealers are. He compiles his drug-trafficking cases and posts them on his website for anyone to see.
- Then drug users know where to go to get their next fix, and I wonder what kind of skeletons are in this prosecutors closet?
Although Bailey has been publishing the list since soon after he took office in 2005, only now is it gaining much attention. Several defense attorneys said they didn’t know it existed until local radio station WKTN recently posted an online link.
John Murphy, the executive director of the Ohio Prosecuting Attorneys Association, didn’t know, either. He said he’s unaware of any other prosecutors doing anything similar, but he likes it: “ Sounds like a great idea, if you ask me. It’s all a matter of public record anyway.”
Bailey likened his list to the sex-offender registry and said he sees it as both a public service and a crime-prevention tool.
“If (dealers) are selling, they are also using, and if they are using, then they’re probably out there breaking into your garages and homes,” he said.Some people see that another way. The characteristics of each case are different, and so, too, is each defendant, said Barry Wilford, a Columbus lawyer and public-policy director for the Ohio Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.“ This policy makes no attempt to sort out those offenders who may actually pose a threat to the community from those who do not,” Wilford said. “It seems incongruent to accept that an offender for whom the court imposed a term of probation constituted a threat to the public.”He said the list seems, at best, bent on public shaming, and he likened it to modern-day wearing of a scarlet letter. Bailey, though, said he has heard few objections, except from the relatives or friends of a few people on the list saying that the convicts had turned their lives around.
- This is a myth, as usual. Just because someone might be selling drugs, doesn't mean they are also using and committing other crimes.