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Thursday, June 07, 2007
(5:30 PM) | Stephen:
It's A Small (Creepy) World After All

So Edwin Hall, the man accused of kidnapping and murdering Kelsey Smith, used to live about half a mile away from me. And earlier this year he and his family moved to a location less than half a mile from a place we rented in Olathe a while ago.

This isn't profound, I don't have special insight or information into this case. And I'm at least intellectually aware that yes, crimes can happen in the suburbs! But I tend to not obsess constantly over the likelihood of a crime happening near my house or involving people who live near me, so when something like this does happen it's a shock.

There are videos at the link above, and one of them is just unedited footage of Hall being escorted into the CCTV room to appear before a judge. I've had the pleasure of visiting an inmate there before, and that part of the detention center isn't really on the normal tour. Sometimes I'm glad at the access given to journalists, and sometimes I wonder if it's really necessary. The article mentioned that Hall said he would hire his own attorney, but I'm not sure why an attorney would not be present for his arraignment and apparently his bail hearing.

We also now know that Hall has a wife and son. The man who called in the tip that led to Hall's arrest, his neighbor, talked about how worried he is for Hall's family right now, and I share that concern. I'm also impressed at the way Hall's neighbor conducted himself. He called in with the information he had instead of just sitting back, and he also seems to be always aware that Hall is accused, which is different than guilty. We all would do well to keep that in mind.

Finally, I do hope that Phill Kline, our wingnut welfare DA, doesn't manage to screw this up. Word from the DA's office is that Kline has no desire to embarrass himself by actually appearing in court. But Kline has always been an attention whore, and might see his political redemption in a successful prosecution. What we need right now, though, is a competent prosecutor, and Phill Kline has never in his checkered career as a "lawyer" shown the capacity to aspire to that.

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