After Thursday's bond hearing in this case, I'm left wondering why only the mothers are speaking out about their daughters' victimization by 18-yr old Edwin Cintron (see my earlier blog entry). Four mothers of the victims were in court for this brief hearing. I commend them for taking the time to attend. I believe that it does make a difference to the Court when victims are represented. Many important decisions regarding a defendant's prosecution are made in these pretrial hearings (particularly bond motions and motions to suppress). The stronger the State's case, the more leverage they have with respect to future plea negotiations. The presence of the victim does have an impact in these hearings, even when they don't address the Court.
Mr. Cintron’s bond was posted and his passport was surrendered subsequent to the June 26th hearing. However, his grandmother was unable to house him because her landlord would not permit it. Thursday's bond motion was to ask if Mr. Cintron could live with his uncle in Texas. Judge Bob LeBlanc denied his request. Since there is nowhere for him to go, he is still at the Orange County Correctional Facility.
As a sidenote, Mr. Cintron’s 13-yr old sister has been sent to another state, removed from her friends (the victims), to protect her brother. Removing her is tantamount to punishing her for the actions of her brother. This will likely cause her friends to feel guilty about their willingness to speak up and prosecute Mr. Cintron. She has essentially been exiled, which can only make their recovery more difficult.
Click here to see WFTV's coverage of the hearing. And here's what can happen to sex offenders who have no place to go. I wish I knew what the best solution is for a situation like this. At the moment, it appears to be jail.