This country’s lack of decent, affordable childcare options has helped one woman put off jail time. And while it may seem unfair to the rest of the people convicted with her (including her husband), the judge’s compassion for the lives of three little kids whose mom was convicted of fraud kind of renews my faith in, what exactly, the system? Humanity? New York federal judges?
Casey Greenfield writes in Double X about Janira Bueno, a mother who was convicted (as was her husband and 11 others) in a tax-fraud conspiracy in a New York federal court and sentenced to two years in prison. She’ll serve her sentence eventually, but citing a lack of an available caregiver, the judge has given her up to three years — possibly more — to find someone to take the kids. The youngest child is two.
In his opinion, the judge said he had to find a balance between Bueno serving her time and the needs of her innocent children. If she waits even three years, her youngest will be in Kindergarten and her oldest will be a teen.
The judge described Bueno as a devoted mother. Her offense was non-violent. Giving her more time will, as Greenfield points out, have a dramatic affect on the children developmentally speaking. The judge also points out that a delayed sentence could ensure that the kids are kept from becoming wards of the state and out of the foster care system.
In fact, the judge’s decision isn’t just compassionate, it’s riddled with common sense.
Something tells me not everyone would agree with the judge. Let’s hear it.