Barry Gilton and Lupe Mercado are scheduled to be arraigned in a San Francisco court today. They are accused of killing 22-year-old Calvin Sneed, a gang member who was pimping out their 17-year-old daughter. Sneed is dead, but Gilton and Mercado deny any involvement.
They did, however, ask law enforcement and other agencies to help them rescue their daughter. According to Gilton’s attorney, “Every place they turned to turned them away.”
S.F. couple kill daughter’s alleged pimp, cops say, on SFGate.com.
Parents accused of killing daughter’s pimp in San Francisco, on LATimes.com.
Meanwhile, in Shiner, Texas, a 23-year-old man allegedly killed a man he found molesting his 5-year-old daughter in a barn. His weapons were his fists. This man has not been arrested and charged with murder. According to news reports, local residents think he’s a hero.
Read Is Texas dad who killed alleged child molester a criminal? On MSNBC.MSN.com.
Despite the heinous actions of the men who are now dead, legal experts say that no one has the right to take the law into their own hands, and vigilante justice cannot be tolerated in a civil society.
Yes, but …
Society’s legal institutions depend on people following the rules. Sociopaths do not follow the rules. Therefore, when it comes to dealing with sociopaths, the institutions are practically useless.
Many of us can tell stories of going to law enforcement or other authorities, and coming away disappointed, even outraged. Not only did the authorities fail to investigate, they conveyed the impression, or sometimes came right out and stated, that we were victimized because of our own stupidity, or we were just jealous and vindictive.
I learned early in my experience of going after my ex-husband, who took $227,000 from me, that I could not depend on lawyers, law enforcement, or the court. And while I had always been the most law-abiding of citizens, when it came to James Montgomery, there were certain matters that I took into my own hands. I got more results on my own than I did through the legal system.
The Texas father apparently acted in an unplanned fit of rage. If the California parents did, in fact, kill the pimp—which they deny—it would have been out of frustration, fear and anger at not only the gang member, but at a civil society that let them down.