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#113213 - 07/15/05 02:09 PM "Satainst" attacked = Hate Crime
TR966 Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 06/30/01
Posts: 1874
Loc: Up in the Mountains, USA
CNN

Teens in Satanist case enter plea
By Emanuella Grinber
Friday, July 15, 2005;
Posted: 1:32 p.m. EDT (17:32 GMT)

(COURT TV) -- Two New York teens avoided jail time for attacking a self-proclaimed "card-carrying" member of the Church of Satan (***not a COS member, only claimed to be***) by pleading guilty Tuesday to second-degree assault as a hate crime.

Against the objections of prosecutors, Queens Supreme Court Justice James Griffin sentenced Paul Rotondi, 18, and Frank Scarpinito, 18, to 150 hours of community service and five years' probation for the January 9 attack on Daniel Romano in Maspeth, Queens, a quiet suburb of New York City.

Queens District Attorney Richard Brown recommended three and a half years in prison for the defendants, who faced potential 15-year sentences on five counts, including aggravated assault and use of a weapon in the supposedly Satanism-biased attacks.

"The defendants have ... acknowledged that they harassed, attacked and physically injured the victim because he was different from them," Brown said in a press release.

Prosecutors said that on January 9 at about 2:30 p.m., the defendants called out "Hey, Satan," to Romano from a car before getting out and beating him with an ice scraper and metal pipe.

Romano sustained multiple bruises and lacerations and was treated for 12 stitches in the back of his head.

At the time of the assault, prosecutors noted, Romano was wearing black nail polish and an upside-down crucifix, and his hair was dyed blue.

Scarpinito's attorney, Richard Leff, concedes that his client attacked Romano, but denied the incident was motivated by anti-Satanism sentiment.

"The D.A. may call this a hate crime, but really, it's just a case of some kids acting dumb and beating up another kid who was a bit of an oddball," Leff said.

The charges cast unwanted media attention on the Manhattan-based Church of Satan, whose high priest, Peter Gilmore, attempted to distance Romano from the organization in several interviews.

Satanists consider themselves "the most formidable threat to those who would halt progress in the name of spirituality," according to a Web site, describing its members as "explorers on the untrodden paths of science, human motivation and mystery ? all that is most truly occult."

Founded in 1966, the Church of Satan "holds individualism as one of its main values," according to its Web site, and cautions outsiders that they won't find group hugs "as part of the repertoire."

Conspicuously absent on the Web site are references to human sacrifices or other misperceptions of the religion that prosecutors say sparked the attack on Romano, who claims to hold the Church of Satan's "Red Card" of membership.

The defendants will begin their community service immediately and will return in front of Justice Griffin on October 11, when he will formally vacate their plea as youth offenders and impose the five years' probation, considering their progress.

"The judge evidently thought that what they needed was sensitivity training," said Leff. "This way, they do good deeds and help out society a bit."


Edited by TR966 (07/15/05 04:28 PM)
_________________________
" I am a railing alongside the torrent;
whoever is able to grasp me may grasp me!
Your cruch, however I am not"
Zarathustra
Or, "most people are like Slinkies...
Not really much good for anything, but
they can still bring a smile to your face
when you push them down a flight of stairs.
TR966

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#113214 - 07/15/05 02:27 PM Re: COS Member attacked = Hate Crime [Re: TR966]
Serpens Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 11/05/04
Posts: 125
Loc: Western New York
Quote:

"The D.A. may call this a hate crime, but really, it's just a case of some kids acting dumb and beating up another kid who was a bit of an oddball," Leff said.




It's actually a case of violent assault, no matter what the circumstances are, or how "socially inept" the victim is. What a joke.

From what little I understand about the victim, based upon the limited information granted by the initial report, the boy should have realized that it was not in his best interest to trumpet his affiliation in his fiercely Christian locale. "Expressing your individuality" is great, but be realistic and acknowledge what you can gain or lose by employing a little or a lot of tact.


Edited by Serpens (07/15/05 02:37 PM)

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#113215 - 07/15/05 02:38 PM Re: COS Member attacked = Hate Crime [Re: Serpens]
TR966 Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 06/30/01
Posts: 1874
Loc: Up in the Mountains, USA
>>a case of violent assault, no matter what the circumstances are, or how "socially inept" the victim is. What a joke.<<
That is all "Hate Crimes", I look at most attacks no matter who is being attacked as at least a pissed off crime, it does not matter who the person is, or why they are attacked. I think the "hate crime" laws are stupid, but do find it amusing that it is being used for this case. I do not think that being charged with an extra "crime" because the person is different looking (color/race), religion (Satanist, jewish...), hair, wardrobe, etc... People are allways going to hate or be afraid of those that are different, but should not be charged extra for not beating up "their own kind". It is stupid, but in this case amusing to me that this law is being used this way. And I do agree that if you look / dress "wierd or different" you have to expect that narrow minded people are going to fuck with you. When I was younger and had dyed hair, or long hair, or mohawks, knew when I went out, that in certain areas of town I would be messed with.
_________________________
" I am a railing alongside the torrent;
whoever is able to grasp me may grasp me!
Your cruch, however I am not"
Zarathustra
Or, "most people are like Slinkies...
Not really much good for anything, but
they can still bring a smile to your face
when you push them down a flight of stairs.
TR966

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#113216 - 07/15/05 02:51 PM Re: COS Member attacked = Hate Crime [Re: TR966]
Svengali Offline
CoS Magister

Registered: 03/06/03
Posts: 12460
Loc: Florida, U.S.A.
Quote:

The charges cast unwanted media attention on the Manhattan-based Church of Satan, whose high priest, Peter Gilmore, attempted to distance Romano from the organization in several interviews.




It was most certainly not a matter of "attempting" to distance the CoS from Romano.


Romano was NEVER a member of The Church of Satan.


REPEAT: Romano was NEVER a member of The Church of Satan.


In case anyone did not get it the first two times:


Romano was NEVER a member of The Church of Satan.
_________________________
Live and Let Die.
"If I have to choose between defending the wolf or the dog, I choose the wolf, especially when he is bleeding." -- Jaques Verges
"I may have my faults, but being wrong ain't one of them." -- Jimmy Hoffa
"As for wars, well, there's only been 268 years out of the last 3421 in which there were no wars. So war, too, is in the normal course of events." -- Will Durant.
"Satanism is the worship of life, not a hypocritical, whitewashed vision of life, but life as it really is." -- Anton Szandor LaVey
“A membership ticket in this party does not confer genius on the holder.” -- Benito Mussolini
MY BOOK: ESSAYS IN SATANISM | MY BLOG: COSMODROMIUM | Deep Satanism Blog

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#113217 - 07/15/05 02:57 PM Re: COS Member attacked = Hate Crime [Re: TR966]
Serpens Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 11/05/04
Posts: 125
Loc: Western New York
Quote:

>>a case of violent assault, no matter what the circumstances are, or how "socially inept" the victim is. What a joke.<<
That is all "Hate Crimes", I look at most attacks no matter who is being attacked as at least a pissed off crime, it does not matter who the person is, or why they are attacked. I think the "hate crime" laws are stupid, but do find it amusing that it is being used for this case. I do not think that being charged with an extra "crime" because the person is different looking (color/race), religion (Satanist, jewish...), hair, wardrobe, etc... People are allways going to hate or be afraid of those that are different, but should not be charged extra for not beating up "their own kind". It is stupid, but in this case amusing to me that this law is being used this way. And I do agree that if you look / dress "wierd or different" you have to expect that narrow minded people are going to fuck with you. When I was younger and had dyed hair, or long hair, or mohawks, knew when I went out, that in certain areas of town I would be messed with.




The defending attorney was certainly in the right to dismiss this as a "hate crime": a little research on google yields information saying that they were repaying him for some injustice involving money. I can't seem to locate many relevant details: this story seems to mutate and change depending on who wrote it. My beef with the statement is that it downplays the severity of the crime because they attackers are "just kids".

Hate crime laws in of themselves are ridiculous. Mens rea, the guilty mind, should be established by an individual's intent to do the crime, not the motivation behind it. You can't have laws that act as phantom thought police. The crime is in the act, not the thought.


Edited by Serpens (07/15/05 03:00 PM)

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#113218 - 07/15/05 03:56 PM Re: COS Member attacked = Hate Crime [Re: Svengali]
uncleherpe Offline


Registered: 03/22/05
Posts: 499
He sounds rather obnoxious. Nothing that could justify assault though.

Can people get in trouble for misrepresenting themselves as members of the Church of Satan when they are not? I thought I saw something about that once.. It might have just been for people saying that they were official spokespersons.
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One stupid post too many.

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#113219 - 07/15/05 04:22 PM Hate Crimes [Re: Serpens]
TR966 Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 06/30/01
Posts: 1874
Loc: Up in the Mountains, USA
"Hate crime laws in of themselves are ridiculous"

That was my point, but was amused it being used for a "Satanist".
_________________________
" I am a railing alongside the torrent;
whoever is able to grasp me may grasp me!
Your cruch, however I am not"
Zarathustra
Or, "most people are like Slinkies...
Not really much good for anything, but
they can still bring a smile to your face
when you push them down a flight of stairs.
TR966

Top
#113220 - 07/15/05 04:26 PM "Satanist" attacked = Hate Crime [Re: Svengali]
TR966 Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 06/30/01
Posts: 1874
Loc: Up in the Mountains, USA
Will change post to reflect such, and I know not to trust the media. "COS member" was just used to garner attention.
Thank you for the correction.
_________________________
" I am a railing alongside the torrent;
whoever is able to grasp me may grasp me!
Your cruch, however I am not"
Zarathustra
Or, "most people are like Slinkies...
Not really much good for anything, but
they can still bring a smile to your face
when you push them down a flight of stairs.
TR966

Top
#113221 - 07/15/05 04:28 PM Re: COS Member attacked = Hate Crime [Re: Serpens]
Cholinergic Offline
<B>CoS Member</B>

Registered: 04/16/05
Posts: 888
Loc: UK
I would have to agree with you - punishment should be equal to the damage caused by the criminal act to the victim not based upon the motivation for committing the crime.
_________________________
Yes, I named myself after a neurotransmitter

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#113222 - 07/15/05 04:45 PM Stupid. stupid, STUPID. [Re: TR966]
TheAbyss Offline


Registered: 07/08/05
Posts: 36
Loc: Helsinki, Finland.
Quote:

Romano was wearing... an upside-down crucifix...




This had to happen eventually. This is a classic case of misinterpretation of Dr LaVey's writings, and CoS philosophy.

Satanism and Inverted Christianity are NOT the same thing.

Seriously, what did the kid expect wearing an Inverted cross around his neck!

Sorry for the lack of empathy, but what the kid did was generally known as 'Asking for it.'

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#113223 - 07/15/05 06:36 PM Is that all??? [Re: TR966]
Shiva Offline
CoS Reverend

Registered: 10/31/01
Posts: 2762
Loc: Ormond Beach, FL
I don't like the idea of "hate crimes" in general. As far as I'm concerned, a crime committed is a crime committed, regardless of the motive, and the resulting victim is still the same. I think it's unfair to belittle a crime against a victim where the crime wasn't committed with that particular motive.

But since our country insists on making the distintion, I'll play along here.

Against the objections of prosecutors, Queens Supreme Court Justice James Griffin sentenced Paul Rotondi, 18, and Frank Scarpinito, 18, to 150 hours of community service and five years' probation for the January 9 attack on Daniel Romano in Maspeth, Queens, a quiet suburb of New York City.

For a violent hate crime that presumably carries a stiffer penalty???

I have to ask, what's the penalty for a similar attack that doesn't make the grade for a "hate crime?" Three years probation and 60 hours community service perhaps?

"The D.A. may call this a hate crime, but really, it's just a case of some kids acting dumb and beating up another kid who was a bit of an oddball," Leff said.

So, if two 18-year-olds (maybe 17 at time of committing a violent crime) can still be passed off as being just kids, at what age does NY start prosecuting violent offenders as adults?

I'm uncomfortable with the downplay on the fact that this was a violent crime, regardless of the motives of the perps who were obviously old enough to know better. It wasn't just giving a wedgie to the class oddball. Maybe things have changed since I was a teen, but last time I checked bullying outcasts didn't necessitate stitches.

Yes, there's been a lot of talk about how the victim behaved in an "asking for it" sort of way, but I can't see that as an excuse for this type of violent crime. That's what it boils down to for me - a violent crime, prosecuted in a manner where an even tougher penalty is expected, and the two perps get away with relatively little punishment.

Bear in mind, I'm used to hearing about younger defendents do far harder sentences for far less of a crime.
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Rev. Shiva Rodriguez
Shiva's World / Headless Historicals / Siren Productions Media / Predatory Moon

"The ugliest of trades have their moments of pleasure. Now, if I were a grave-digger, or even a hangman, there are some people I could work for with a great deal of enjoyment." - Douglas Jerrold

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#113224 - 07/15/05 06:45 PM Re: "Satainst" attacked = Hate Crime [Re: TR966]
Old_Pig Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 3969
Loc: The Deep South
Typical attention-starved teenage clown. He dyed his hair, painted his nails and got out expecting to be noticed. "Hey, look at me, look at me! I'm a Satanist"

He wanted attention and he got it! He won't be the first kid to get beaten by bullies because he looked weird. It happens all the time (usually with no religious implications)

In any case, the lesson to be learned here is that Lesser Magic works. Even when the user doesn’t know how to use it and gets the opposite results of what he expected.
_________________________
You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.
Robert A. Heinlein


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#113225 - 07/15/05 06:52 PM STUPID [Re: TheAbyss]
TR966 Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 06/30/01
Posts: 1874
Loc: Up in the Mountains, USA
Agreed,
Side story, I got a had made gift from another
COS member, a necklace, and I wore it out one
night under my overshirt. The heat, and the
booze caused me to take my overshirt off, and
not think (drunk) about my necklace, later that
night I got jumped (x-ian area but where isn't)
I gave much better than I got, but was pissed
afterwards about my own stupidity (happens to
all of us on occation right ) I was not that
mad about being jumped (lived in the city, not
someting new to me, been jumped, stabbed, and
even shot at, for making the "mistake" of walking
through the "wrong" neighborHood) Remember
Responsibility lies where?¿? Got your ass kicked?¿?
Think about why, and learn from it, this nation
is Court / sue / woe is me crazy. I wear my
jewelry during ritual, not on public display for
the most part now. With age comes wisdom to some.
_________________________
" I am a railing alongside the torrent;
whoever is able to grasp me may grasp me!
Your cruch, however I am not"
Zarathustra
Or, "most people are like Slinkies...
Not really much good for anything, but
they can still bring a smile to your face
when you push them down a flight of stairs.
TR966

Top
#113226 - 07/15/05 08:39 PM Re: "Satainst" attacked = Hate Crime [Re: TR966]
CWH Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 04/23/05
Posts: 3746
It doesn't matter if he was or was not a CoS member. It doesn't matter if he was wearing an inverted-cross or not. It doesn't matter if he had his hair dyed blue or pink.

The fact of the matter was that 2 persons, old enough to know right from wrong, beat the shit out of him and could have killed him. No matter what the motives were or why, they chose to commit a crime against him. This act should have warrented more punishment.

He asked for it since he wore an inverted-cross? I don't think so. If he wanted to be "reverse-christian" and show it, it was his choice. I don't beat the shit out of evey X-ian that I know if they wear a cross. That's fucking stupid.

Plain and simple, those two jack-offs would have committed that crime on anyone that could have been in passing. Just because the kid was a "freak", it's a hate-crime? No, its just a crime, period.

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#113227 - 07/15/05 08:52 PM Re: "Satainst" attacked = Hate Crime [Re: CWH]
Svengali Offline
CoS Magister

Registered: 03/06/03
Posts: 12460
Loc: Florida, U.S.A.
The incident was an all-round collision of dumbasses.

It is unfortunate that the term "Satanism" had to enter into it in any way.
_________________________
Live and Let Die.
"If I have to choose between defending the wolf or the dog, I choose the wolf, especially when he is bleeding." -- Jaques Verges
"I may have my faults, but being wrong ain't one of them." -- Jimmy Hoffa
"As for wars, well, there's only been 268 years out of the last 3421 in which there were no wars. So war, too, is in the normal course of events." -- Will Durant.
"Satanism is the worship of life, not a hypocritical, whitewashed vision of life, but life as it really is." -- Anton Szandor LaVey
“A membership ticket in this party does not confer genius on the holder.” -- Benito Mussolini
MY BOOK: ESSAYS IN SATANISM | MY BLOG: COSMODROMIUM | Deep Satanism Blog

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