Sandra Triebel is the 40-something year-old lady who admitted to furnishing the liquor to Kenneth Scott Blake II before he drove the wrong way down a highway, killing my sister Laura. You can read about the legal history in my timeline but suffice it to say, she didn’t serve a day in jail for her actions. That was not surprising to us after suffering through Judge Charles Atwell’s twisted, victim-hating, sense of justice.
Right after judge Peggy Stevens McGraw dismissed manslaughter charges against her, but before she was sentenced for misdemeanor involvement in Laura’s death, she was popped for methamphetamine possession out in Livingston County, MO. As soon as I heard this I predicted she had a good chance of being punished more severely for that charge, than for her contribution to my sister’s death. I was correct as Ms. Triebel was sentenced to 5 years with an opportunity for review after 120 days. She is in jail as far as I know at this time. I was told that these charges could not be considered when sentencing for her involvement in my sister’s death. I was also told that her probation for giving alcohol to minors couldn’t be considered when sentencing her fort he meth! It just really seems like the justice system is set up to coddle criminals, not punish them.
I have mixed emotions about this. Of course I’m happy to see this lady actually serve time for anything. I even told my family that I thought she looked like an amphetamine user the first time I laid eyes on her so I wasn’t surprised at all when she got busted for possessing it. (I grew up in Independence, Missouri so I usually recognize the effects of meth on peoples’ faces when I see it) For those of you who think I should have more compassion for a poor lady with a disease, please trade places with my sister before judging. Also, try telling a 3-year-old who is dying of cancer that the free-will choice of methamphetamine use constitutes “disease.” Still, the bottom line is that she is serving time for a victimless crime while never serving any time for breaking the law in a way that contributed to the death of an innocent child.
You see, our justice system’s priorities are completely ignorant and arbitrary. Punishment should be proportional to the harm a crime causes to others. I’m not sticking up for meth-heads; far from it actually. What I’m saying is that crimes that result in harm to innocent people should draw the largest punishment. Crimes that result in death should be treated very harshly. If you’re sitting there disagreeing with me, I guarantee you’ve never lost an immediate family member to the criminal actions of some stranger. The law states that there is some collective social harm done when someone possesses drugs. That’s fine, but the punishment for said crime should be much lower than a crime which results in someone else’s death. If she had been high while driving, then I would say that’s a much more serious crime than just possessing the drug. All this aside, I’m glad some one-in-a-million judge out in Livingston County, Missouri has his head screwed on correctly enough to finally hold this lady accountable for her behavior. How’s that for a confusing opinion?