It was a very sad story that broke out and got National attention when little 7 year old Somer Renee Thompson ran off from her siblings as they were walking home from school apparently after an arguments with them. Her brother and sister just assumed Somer ran ahead of them to go home. That unfortunately was the last time anyone had seen Somer alive.

On October 19,2009, two days after a wide search for her, the body of little Somer was found in a landfill across the state line in Georgia. Once the body was positively identified as that of Somer Thonpson, Clay County Sheriff Rick Beseler made the statement, “Now we are looking for a suspect. Somebody did it, now we’ve got to find out who.”

Jarred Harrell was arrested in Meridian, Mississippi last month. He was charged with child pornography and he was extradited to Clay County. Friday at 6 a.m. he was charged with premeditated murder and sexual battery. Harrell was already facing 55 charges involving molestation and child pornography that wasn’t even related to the Somer Thompson case.

Sheriff Rick Beseler said there was a lot of evidence processed but it was actually an admission to the facts on Thompson’s case that brought the charges against him of murder.

Beseler was being very careful about giving out many details of the investigation, but he did say that the little 7 year old child had been assaulted and she died of asphyxiation. He said that DNA from Harrell and some other evidence they have that obviously place Harrell where Somer was killed also allowed them to file the murder charge.

“Based on our evidence from this investigation, we feel confident that Harrell committed this crime,” said Beseler.

Harrell only lived a few doors down from where Somer was last seen alive. She walked by his house everyday after school on her way home. Beseler doesn’t think she was inside Harrell’s home for very long because their investigators searched all the homes in the area promptly after she was reported missing and there were no signs of her.

State Attorney Angela Corey received applause from a group of bikers that were close to the family, when she announced at the news conference that this is the type of crime that prosecutors will likely seek the death penalty for.

Rod Buchanan, the man that turned the computer into authorities that contained the pornography images said he doesn’t want to see Harrell get death. “Give him life without parole; put him in general population; let the guys in jail take care of him the way they do,” said Buchanan. “He will no longer be the monster, he will actually be the victim and I think that is a much better sentence for him.”

Harrell is presently being held in isolation and without bail in the Clay County Jail.

I like Buchanan’s thoughts on the sentencing but I just have one problem with it. A lot of time when someone is sentenced to life in prison without parole they sometimes find a way to get released. What is the purpose of adding in the sentence “without benefit of parole” if they do something like release some on good behavior just because the jails are too crowded. My children’s great grandfather’s murderer was released and originally sentenced to death but before they could actually put him in the chair the state of Louisiana threw out the death penalty which automatically converted his sentence to life in prison without parole.

There was a parole hearing and I attended it to try to get them not release this man.  His attorney claimed the man just wanted out so he could spend some time with his grand-kids and his daughter. This came from a man that in the 50’s had ambushed the sheriff and his deputy in a small town in Louisiana and killed them and to top that off he got in the sheriff’s car and when he drove off he ran over the body of the sheriff. This man sat on the front porch of my children’s great-grandfather’s and drank coffee as his friend yet he gunned him down without them having a chance to defend theirselves.

I stood in front of the parole board and begged them not to release the man. He wanted to spend time with his grand kids but what about my kids? They were deprived of time with their great-grandfather too but it was this man’s fault. I lost my battle when they released him and within a week the man appeared on TV, I believe it was on The Today Show, Katie Couric interviewed him asking him how it felt being an American Hero! She said he was one because he beat the system. Needless to say it wasn’t long before I was on the phone calling wanting to talk to her but they refused to connect me to her. I wanted to give her a piece of my mind.

OK I know I went on a rant but this is what happens when I hear someone say give someone life in prison without parole and they will never be free on the streets again. Well that is not always the case. If they get the death penalty and it is actually done then we know for sure they can never be free to do this again. To me this is the only way we can make sure and this is why I feel like I do about the death penalty. It is harsh I know, but I have to ask… does a child molester deserve to be free? Does a child molester that kills the child after they molest him or her deserve freedom ever again? NO they don’t. (I will leave it just at that)

Maybe little Somer Renee Thompson with get some justice. Let’s hope so. She didn’t ask for this and she certainly didn’t deserve it. So maybe now she can rest in peace. God bless you Somer. I know you are happy now where you are but I also know you are sadly missed here on earth. Hopefully Haleigh Cummings and Caylee Anthony and all the others lost or murdered will get the justice that they deserve too, let’s hope so anyway. God bless them all.

Jan Barrett

Be Sociable, Share!