Sunday, October 19, 2014

Last word: 'Unfit for a Free Society'

A week after Bodhi Tree was sentenced to serve 105 years to life in state prison for murdering two people in Arcata last year and shooting a third in Eureka, a pre-sentencing report made public as a part of his case file sheds new light on the 29-year-old and his path through the criminal justice system. It also underscores the multi-layered tragedy that just played out before our community’s eyes. - Thadeus Greenson/The Journal
The report paints a picture of a man born into difficult circumstances who suffered numerous childhood traumas and was never taught to harness his anger, a problem that compounded with the onset of multiple mental illnesses as he became an adult....

Born July 5, 1985, Tree grew up in Garberville with his parents, but bounced around, living in at least six different communities by the time his mother died of an aneurism when he was 13. But Tree’s troubles began long before that, according to a letter from Kai Ferrara included in the report....

“I believe it is the responsibility of our justice system to protect its citizens from people as dangerous as my childhood friend Bodhi Tree,” Ferrar wrote. “With the delinquency of his parents, I have always felt like an older brother to him, wishing the best for him and wanting to help. However, as all of his past friends have individually learned, there is no safe place near him. When he is on the street, he is a free roaming threat to whoever has the misfortune and responsibility of his presence.

“As a kid, Bodhi needed constant supervision, which his parents were not capable of providing. As an adult, Bodhi needs constant supervision, and only our jail system can provide the kind of safety we citizens need. It is an incredible misfortune that two beautiful innocent lives have been lost, and we must use this experience to prevent further imminent harm. I worry that Bodhi Tree will be out on the streets in 10 years’ time. We citizens need to be safe for longer than that.

“Please, do not allow him freedom, ever.”
Tree sentenced in tear-filled courtroom - Paul Mann/Mad River Union
Convicted murderer Bodhi Tree’s 105-year sentence was pronounced in a packed, tear-filled courtroom, where the 29-year-old Garberville native spoke no word and showed no remorse.

In impassioned statements read aloud minutes before the Oct. 10 sentencing, wrathful and weeping family members of the victims implored Superior Court Justice Dale A. Reinholtsen to mete out the maximum punishment of 117.5 years.

He came close.

Accusing Tree of lacking any moral compass and describing his shooting spree as senseless and inexplicable, Reinholtsen ordered the prisoner to serve consecutive sentences totaling 105 years
"I'm here to talk about the impact on our lives by the senseless slaughter of two innocent people by a man, and I'm hesitant to use the word, man." - John Chiv/Words Worth Oct 10, 2014
"Little did we know that this nightmare would never end" - John Chiv/Words Worth Oct 10, 2014
Jurors, family, community members pack courtroom for Bodhi Tree sentencing - John Chiv/Words Worth Oct 10, 2014
...7 jurors took the time out of their schedules, community members that attended the trial, and the families of all victims have been waiting...
link - John Chiv/Words Worth Oct 10, 2014
...He has to serve consecutive sentences... but the basic gist is he has to serve 75 years and even then with minimum parole times on other terms, it is another 25 so it would be 100 years before he is eligible for parole.

Tree sat with with an attitude, no remorse and after sentence looked at bailiffs and said "Allright, ready."
We plead with the court to never release this animal to society" - John Chiv/Words Worth Oct 10, 2014

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