I am writing regarding the article in the May 12 Mirror about Paul E. Downs, 31, of Bigler Drive, Martinsburg.
I am completely appalled at the ignorance and disrespect that Blair County District Attorney Daniel Kiss and Judge Elizabeth Doyle have for our community and our children. This man was charged with raping a 4-year-old child and was offered a plea deal of 7 years' probation, no jail time and all the major charges being dismissed.
This man does not have to register as a sex offender or anything, and they allowed him to plead "no contest" to endangering the welfare of a child and corruption of a minor, which are about misdemeanors. I am completely outraged, and that's an understatement of how I'm feeling along with probably 90 percent or more of other parents in our community.
How they can send a person to jail for 10 or more years for selling drugs but let a child predator walk the streets with the chance and probability to do it again?
And this isn't the first or second time I've seen this happen.
I think our local law enforcement officials need to focus more on putting an end to something they can control such as protecting our kids from sick people like this instead of putting so much time, effort and not to mention our hard earned taxes we pay on things that are never going to end like drugs.
All they are doing when they bust one or 50 people is making room for the next group. It's a never ending, vicious cycle.
If the addicts can't get it around here, they will just go where they can get it and bring it back. That's not the case with child rapists.
We can get them off the streets, we are able to keep our kids safe from them, the people in charge are just choosing not to allow them to roam freely around our neighborhoods and scope out their next victim.
What say do we the people have in all this and what can we do to make a change? After all, it's only our kids who are being preyed upon.
(Editor's note: The Mirror reported in the story that the agreement was reached to avoid putting the child victim through the trauma of a trial for the second time this year.)