Update: Notice (as I didn’t until prodded) that the date on the item is August 24, 2011. Still worth knowing about.
One for the Jaw Dropped in Horror files. A Pennsylvania judge sent children to prison in exchange for money.
Accused of perpetrating a “profound evil,” former Pennsylvania judge Mark Ciavarella Jr. has been sentenced to 28 years in prison for illegally accepting money from a juvenile-prison developer while he spent years incarcerating thousands of young people.
Prosecutors said Ciavarella sent juveniles to jail as part of a “kids for cash” scheme involving Robert Mericle, builder of the PA and Western PA Child Care juvenile detention centers.
What does that sound like? The Catholic church in Ireland, and judges who helped it get capitation money for children sentenced to imprisonment in industrial “schools.” Yes really. They did it partly for the money – money which they did not fully spend on the children.
Among the young people exploited by Ciavarella were 15-year-old Hillary Transue, who was sentenced to three months at a juvenile detention center for mocking an assistant principal on a MySpace page; and 13-year-old Shane Bly, who was sent to a boot camp for two weekends after being accused of trespassing in a vacant building.