Two Atlanta Stories. Detect A Pattern Yet?

Another doctor in the news for sexual offenses (thanks to Paul K).  And another predator free on bail before trial has disappeared– this time a DeKalb County cop accused of murdering his wife and a handyman:

A former DeKalb County Sheriff’s deputy, out on bond as he awaited trial in the deaths of his wife and a day laborer, has gone missing, authorities said Saturday.

The sheriff’s office’s fugitive unit is looking for Derrick Yancey. The 49-year-old suspect violated the home-arrest conditions of his pretrial release while out on bond, sheriff’s spokeswoman Lt. Billi Akins said. . .

Yancey was indicted and arrested in August for the June shooting death of his wife Linda, 44, and day laborer Marcial Cax Puluc, 20. The deputy told police he had killed Puluc in self-defense after Puluc killed his wife. But authorities said lab tests showed Yancey shot both victims.

Let’s be very clear about what was done in this case.  Derrick Yancey, a police officer, shot two people to death, then lied about it to authorities, trying to pin responsibility on one of his victims.

Should he be trusted when he tells a judge that he will not flee, particularly when he hasn’t even taken responsibility for the crime?

Strange comments from the DeKalb County police spokesperson.  I’m sure it is unintentional, but it sounds as if they haven’t exactly wrapped their heads around the fact that their former colleague is a wanted, violent felon on the run:

[Sheriff’s spokeswoman] Akins, who said she knew Yancey, said the sheriff’s department was stumped by his alleged behavior.

“There doesn’t seem to be any sign of, ‘Why now?’” she said. “The trial was not forthcoming that quickly. We’re just shocked at the continued incidents.” 

The sisters of Yancey’s murdered wife were outraged when he was released to house arrest last August:

In a statement, lawyer Loletha Denise Hale, who said she spoke for Eugene Thomas and Gloria Thomas Sanders, accused prosecutors of giving Yancey “preferential treatment as a result of his previous employment with the DeKalb County court system.”

Is this an instance of favoritism in the DeKalb County courts?  It certainly sounds so.  How many other defendants accused of assassinating two innocent people get released in Dekalb County pending trial?  Has the memory of Derwin Brown faded so fast? 

Imagine a world where we trusted people less when they stood accused of violating the type of societal trust that comes with being a police officer or a doctor, instead of trusting them more.

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1 thought on “Two Atlanta Stories. Detect A Pattern Yet?”

  1. After I saw the first report of these murders last year, I thought Derrick Yancey was the killer. And I was shocked that Judge Ann Workman (now retired) allowed to remain free on bail.

    Here are some stories about what happened this weekend:

    http://www.cbsatlanta.com/news/19098905/detail.html

    http://www.wsbtv.com/video/19120504/index.html

    http://www.myfoxatlanta.com/dpp/news/Search_Continues_for_Fugitive_Ex_deputy_040609

    From the Fox5 story:

    “The private company that monitored Yancey’s ankle bracelet, Providence Community Corrections, said they followed protocol and notified DeKalb County’s pre-trial release program in three hours. Company officials said DeKalb County requested same-day notification in case of escape, but not immediate notification.”

    This was a huge failure of the criminal justice system in DeKalb County. It appears that no well-ordered plan was in place to notify the fugitive squad the minute an accused killer cuts off his ankle monitor. That should not only upset everyone in DeKalb but also Fulton County, because as per your earlier post, Fulton will be allowing even more criminals to stay out of jail before their trials, so they can “save money”.

    Judge Winston Bethel is in charge of the pre-trial program and is supposed to hold a news conference tomorrow. I wonder if he’ll apologize or pass the buck. Knowing how DeKalb operates, I’m guessing the latter, but hoping to be pleasantly surprised.

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