Letter: Shame and lies in Eagle County | VailDaily.com

Letter: Shame and lies in Eagle County

John J. Cornell III
Vail, CO Colorado

It’s February 11, 2008 and I’m sitting in my office wondering why people are the way they are and why we help them. Today I went to court and listened to a family that was torn apart by their son’s tragic death. I listened to all of his relatives talk about who he used to be, and at points felt like I could cry. After all, what if that was me in their position?

Then we came to Candace Calvin, whose driving record I found out was deplorable. She had numerous speeding tickets, driving under suspension, an out-of-state license that was suspended, drunken driving, evading the police and vehicular homicide. And to think her lawyer wanted the judge to give her two years in prison and five years probation. Are you kidding me? Do you want to show the kids that they will not have to pay when they take someone’s life?

I went today to read a letter asking the judge if he would be lenient with her punishment, telling the judge about her life growing up and the obstacles she had to overcome. After hearing the District Attorney tell about her driving record and suspension, I was sick to my stomach and said to myself, she lied to me again. I was told that her license was suspended for having several do-at-large tickets that were unpaid, which she told me after I helped her the first time. Not only did she lie to me about having a valid out-of-state license, but she lied about why it was suspended. I was thinking to myself, when I first get up to read my letter I would start off by saying “good morning your honor.” I also wanted to say that I’ve been deceived again. She came to me for help and lied to me repeatedly to get what she wanted. Then I would proceed to read my letter and after I was done I wanted to look over to her and say, “I hope when you get back from doing your restitution, the girl that I wrote about in the letter, the girl I asked the judge to be lenient on, the one who has also brought turmoil on me, would be the girl I wrote about. Not the girl that is waiting to be sentenced today.”

I read my letter anyway wondering if the girl that I used to know would ever return to us as the innocent girl she once was, the girl that used to be the best of the bunch. I left after reading my letter because I was so upset and wondered if I ever should have helped her at all.

You have brought all of this on yourself. When you are hurting physically, look back and say, all of this could have been avoided by stopping the car and taking responsibility for your actions. You’ve killed a person and lied to many others that care about you. Your lies are never going to get you anywhere except in deeper trouble. Do your time and think about the people you’ve torn apart from your wrong doings. I think you got off easy. Eight years is nothing. When you get out Mathew Lopez will still be gone and you will have your whole life ahead of you.

And for the kids out there that think it’s all about them, and it’s the “me” generation, it’s time to grow up! No one gives you anything in life but the basic tools to survive and prosper, love, understanding, discipline and the knowledge of right and wrong. Remember we are all accountable for the actions we make.

I’m tired of the “shame-on-me’s” in my life and therefore I will not do anything for anyone anymore, except my own blood.

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