Whatever the ultimate fate turns out to be for the three day-care workers indicted and tried for first-degree murder in the death last year of little Amber Cox-Cody and whatever reckoning awaits Stephen McKim, father of little Mia McKim, who, strapped within his vehicle in a parking lot, suffered a similar death while he worked at his job as youth minister at Central Church, justice needs to be evenhanded.
Against a background of public anger and media-hyped sensitivity to child-care reform, District Attorney Bill Gibbons was quick to press the maximum charge against the employees who inexcusably left Amber to die in a day-care van. We wrote at the time that we thought first-degree murder charges, though technically sanctioned by the law, were too extreme in the Amber case. Gibbons has been slow to come to any kind of resolution in the McKim case.
We understand the district attorney's predicament. Only the hardest of hearts and the narrowest of minds would be closed to McKim's grief. We all sorrowed with McKim and his family, as we did earlier with the family of Amber. McKim will forever endure a self-inflicted punishment that the rest of us can only guess at.
But what charges, if any, he will face from the justice system remain to be seen. It is Gibbons' unenviable task to pursue such remedies, if any, and to explain how and why the scales of justice should be tilted. He should wait no longer. •