Imagine my anguish and shock when I opened the paper to see Luke Scarmazzo's face in the photo with "Pot dispenser suing Modesto" (March 5, Page B-1).
Nowhere in this article does it mention that Scarmazzo was involved in the beating and killing of 18-year-old Jonathan Shryock on Jan. 19, 2003. I haven't forgotten; Jonathan was my son.
Jonathan had gotten a job in Fresno, and he was home in Riverbank for a weekend visit. He had gone out with friends and ended up in the wrong place at the wrong time. Some kids had been throwing eggs at cars. Another car pulled in the lot, apparently attempting to find the egg-throwers. Jonathan, who was innocent, happened to be the one who didn't get away.
Three men were involved in the attack on Jonathan. One of the others beat Jonathan with a pipe and the third stabbed Jonathan in the back of the leg, severing his artery. Jonathan bled to death.
Due to issues with the jury there was a mistrial; deals were offered. Scarmazzo pleaded guilty to assault and got off with time served. His prison sentence was suspended and he got three years probation.
Five years later he is feeling mistreated and, according to the article, is "seeking compensation for emotional distress, mental anguish and the loss of a job that paid $13,000 per month."
What about Jonathan's family? Whom do we sue for our ongoing emotional distress, mental anguish, and loss of a son, brother, grandson and friend? If there were any justice, Scarmazzo would have had to do 20 years -- two years longer than I had Jonathan with me.