As I'm sure you have heard, John Allen Muhammad, the DC Sniper, was executed yesterday. And frankly, I'm glad. Before some of you think I'm a death penalty supporter, let me tell you I'm not. Indifference is the best description for me. I have not supported it, nor am I against it.
In the case of Muhammad however, I feel this is justice deserved. Crime occurs every day, every minute. Many times there is a reason, a motive. Then sometimes, like here, there isn't a real explanation. Crimes happen because of opportunity, need, emotion. Only opportunity applied in the DC Sniper case and that's a stretch, since the opportunity was that anyone who went out in public was a target.
This series of crimes paralyzed the DC region for weeks. While I did not personally know any of the victims, the locations of most of the crimes occurred in or near the neighborhood I grew up, worked, or frequented. Most disturbing for me was October 14, 2002 when Linda Franklin was killed outside the Home Depot in the Seven Corners area of Falls Church, Virginia. I was at work nearby and drove by there just an hour before she was killed. During the spree, I had co-workers from the Philadelphia area ask me the best way to drive to avoid the sniper when they were headed to Virginia. I worried for my parents, brother, and sister who still lived in my childhood neighborhood.
When Muhammad, and his accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, were finally captured, we could all rest a little better. With his execution last night, it seems we can all rest even smoother now. Sometimes the death penalty may feel right, even if you have no opinion.