Another bad decision by a Florida judge, another dead girl: that's the subject of this evening's "Talking Points Memo."
This morning, Judge Walter Heinrich (search) told the confessed killer of 13-year-old Sarah Lunde (search) he would be denied bail. But last month, Heinrich released convicted sex offender David Lee Onstott (search) on cash bond of just $100 after he violated state law by failing to register as a sex offender. So Onstott, who was convicted of brutally raping a woman, was walking around unsupervised before he strangled Sarah.
Now Heinrich is a tough guy. But the judge could have been much tougher with Onstott on this sexual offender violation, but he wasn't.
Heinrich has done this before. In June, 2003, 40-year old Mark Pickens (search) stood before him, charged with rape and battery against a law enforcement officer. Big time accusations, right? Judge Heinrich allowed the guy's mother to post cash bond of less than $2,000 and Pickens walked out. --The cops were furious. Six months later, he raped a 39-year-old Tampa mother of two. But did Judge Heinrich learn from that? Apparently not.
So now Heinrich has a rape and a murder on his sheet after letting criminals out on low bail. Walter Heinrich is known as "Buzzy" and sits on the bench in Hillsborough County (search), close to where 11-year-old Carlie Brucia (search) was murdered last year. You may remember, Judge Harry Rapkin let Carlie's accused killer Joseph Smith walk free even though Smith had two probation violations and a slew of failed drug tests. Rapkin was unrepentant when we caught up with him last year.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We spoke to your office and we said would you do an interview with us, with "The O'Reilly Factor?" And we had no calls back...
HARRY RAPKIN, FLORIDA CIRCUIT JUDGE: O'Reilly Factor?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Five phone calls...
RAPKIN: O'Reilly is a piece of scum. I really wouldn't give any interview with "The O'Reilly Factor". You can put that on there. He's just a -- everybody knows he's just a whatever.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We just want...
RAPKIN: That's not real journalism. Mr. O'Reilly -- I have nothing to say to him. Do you want to know about the facts of the case?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
RAPKIN: I never saw this man. He never appeared in my court and no probation officer ever talked to me about this man.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
All right. Now Judge Heinrich had to know about Rapkin, who quit soon after that confrontation. He quit the bench. He's out of there, as he should be.
Now last week, we told you that the judicial system in Florida has melted down. It's now open season on women and children because there are so many violent offenders walking free. "The Miami Herald" reports the state has lost track, lost track of 1,800 sex offenders. Judges and prosecutors routinely let them off easily.
Onstott served less than six years for a violent rape and continued to cause trouble after he was released from prison. Heinrich knew that, but let him out on low bond anyway. -- Outrageous.
So what can be done? Well, because Heinrich is elected, nothing. You can contact his office in Hillsborough County and let him know how you feel, but that's about it.
The bottom line: children are dying all over the USA, and judges are the last line of defense. Most of them are doing their sworn duty to protect us, but some like Heinrich and Rapkin are not, leading to unimaginable tragedy.
And that's "The Memo."
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for "Most Ridiculous Item of the Day"...
Snoop Dogg gets some bad news. Harvard doesn't want him. The rapper was supposed to appear at the school in May, but some students objected, citing lyrics on the rapper's latest album about slapping women to keep them under control. Very nice.
Since Harvard has enough problems with women, as we just heard [earlier in the show] having Snoop show up could not have helped, so he has been disinvited. Ridiculous? You make the call.
Now before we get to the mail, here's the results of our billoreilly.com poll, sponsored by EmigrantDirect.com. The question, "As far as teaching sex-ed in public schools, which do you favor?" Seventy- four percent said abstinence and prevention education. Twenty-four percent believe abstinence only is the way to go. And 3 percent, prevention only.
Very interesting poll. Common sense. We appreciate everybody who logged on.