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Bronx Kids Facing A Year In Jail For Snowball Fight

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Snowball fight.

In an ongoing effort to criminalize youth, a Bronx DA has no intentions of backing away from charges that could put four young men in jail for a year—because of a snowball fight.

In a standard-issue "he said/he said" case, an off-duty cop claims he was hit in the back of the head with snowballs and "menaced" to the extent where he felt it reasonable to draw his gun. The young men—who range in age from 15 to 22—claim the cop was hit by accident, and even then, only in the leg.

Everyone knows it can be nerve-wracking trying to figure out how best to walk through a snowball fight because 1) you do not want to get hit; 2) you do not want to look like you are losing your ground; and 3) you do not actually want to get in a fight with a bunch of teenagers, but drawing a gun is probably not the right call.

And a year in jail? Does that really translate into a net gain for society, throwing a bunch of college-age kids into prison? No, it is not.

 

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Elizabeth Dilts

is currently pursuing a masters at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Dilts came to New York City from Shanghai, China, where she worked as an editor with the English-language City Weekend magazine. Prior to that, Dilts spent a year in Nanjing, China, with a bilingual, Mandarin-English magazine and a stint in Tianjin, China, with a business publication. Looking to use her Mandarin back in the United States, Dilts is covering Flushing, Queens, one of New York’s four Chinatowns. A native of Gary, Indiana., Dilts received her bachelor’s degree in journalism at Indiana University. While in China, she reported on Internet usage among young adults and the education issues faced by multi-ethnic children raised in China.