COLUMBIA, Mo 7/17/14 (Op Ed) --
"Wow!" I thought. "What's Malcolm D. Redmon
doing outta the joint?"
The boyish-faced felon was talking with the fellas near the middle of a street wracked with recent gun violence.
I waved. They waved. And I drove on, remembering the last time I read about Malcolm, he was on "home detention,"
accused -- then acquitted -- of tampering with his "home monitoring device." Though it used to mean jail, these days "the joint" also means Home, Sweet Home
"He’s well-known to our police department," Columbia Police Sgt. Ken Hammond said of Redmon in 2007
. "When Malcolm’s in town, it’s not surprising that there’s shooting or crime involved because he’s a criminal."
Though Mr. Redmon has served his time to date -- repaid his "debt to society" -- he's up on another felony rap, this time for assault. Arrested last September and indicted by a grand jury in December, he posted a $20,000 bond and awaits trial in late August, court records indicate.
Sgt. Hammond said "criminal," and these headlines say why. Malcolm is in the middle of them all: Three arrested after gunfire
. ‘Don’t snitch’ values blamed for suspect’s dismissed case. Police catch up with shooting suspect Two arrested after recent shootingsJury deliberating fate of man tied to Columbia shootingsMan receives home detention for assault
What the headlines don't explain is how one of Columbia's most famous outlaws remains a free man.
In the middle of his latest court case, Mr. Redmon is a small cog in a vast machine
. "The one great principle of the English law is to make business for itself
," Charles Dickens wrote in his masterpiece Bleak House
. "There is no other principle distinctly, certainly, and consistently maintained through all its narrow turnings."
The "narrow turnings" in Malcolm's latest felony charge started with an "arraignment," "counsel status hearing," "preliminary hearing," and "public defender determination," all last September. Since then, the case docket reads like a Charles Dickens novel.
The cast of characters -- each making an appearance at different times -- includes four Judges: Larry Bryson (pictured), Kevin Crane, Jodie Asel
, and Christine Carpenter
And The Defense Attorneys:Derek Mcguire RoeMary Joe Smith
And The Prosecutors:Cecily Daller