When sentencing the last of four men who beat a driver into a coma, the Detroit judge told the defendant, Latrez Cummings 19, that he could have used a father to "beat the hell" out of him when he made a mistake. Latrez was part of the group of African Americans who beat Steven Utash within an inch of his life after he accidentally hit a child with his truck. Utash had gotten out to help the child when this mob beat him to where he ended up in a coma for days, according to the Los Angeles Times on July 17.
When it came time for Cummings to talk in the courtroom in his defense he said that he didn't have the benefit of growing up with a father in the home. Judge James Callahan seemed to take this into consideration and sentenced Cummings to three years probation while serving six months in jail first. This was a lenient sentence in comparison to the other three men charged along with Cummings with the longest of those sentences being six and a half years in jail, according to MSN News.
This mob attacked Utash who got out of his truck to help the 10-year-old boy who had stepped out in front of his vehicle. It is not as if Utash did this on purpose and he not only stayed at the scene but went to help the child. The prosecutor in this case was not happy with the judge's decision and she told him so. Assistant Prosecutor Lisa Lindsay actually objected to the sentence.
She told the judge that there are "many young black men who have been raised without a father but haven't committed crimes." Callahan, who is white, said to Lindsay, "Did I ever use the term black?" He went on to say, “It doesn't matter if a person is black, white, yellow or red.” Callahan said he was once 19 and understands how problems can arise for a young man who didn't have the guidance of a father.
Lindsay didn't stop there, she said:
"That is no excuse, judge, that is setting a bar low. There are plenty of young black males who live in the city of Detroit who are raised by a single mother who do not, I repeat, do not engage in criminal activity.”
The judge listened, but his ruling stayed. It could be that the judge saw something in Cummings that he felt was worth giving the man another chance. People don't get to become a judge overnight, they've had years of law and dealing with all kinds of people, so it could be the judge had a gut feeling about this defendant. If that is the case, hopefully he doesn't let that judge down!