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Andy Martin seeks jail time for Chicago Tribune reporter

December 13, 2013

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Andy Martin has asked a Sangamon County judge to sentence Chicago Tribune reporter Rick Pearson to jail. Pearson has been arrested twice for drunk driving.

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ANDY MARTIN

Professor of Law (Adj.)

30 E. Huron Street, Suite 4406

Chicago, IL 60611-4723

Toll-free tel. (866) 706-2639

Toll-free fax (866) 214-3210

Web site: AndyMartin.com

E-mail: AndyMart20@aol.com

 

 

 

 

December 13, 2013

 

 

 

Hon. Brian T. Otwell

Associate Judge

200 S. Ninth Street

Springfield, IL 62701

via fax (217)753-6665

 

with copy to:

 

Hon. John Milhiser

Sangamon County State Attorney

200 S. Ninth Street

Springfield, IL 62701

Via fax (217) 535-3179

 

 

Re: State v. Rick A. Pearson, 2013-DT-000508

 

     Sentencing, December 13, 20139:00 A.M.

 

Victim Impact Statement

 

 

Dear Judge Otwell

and State Attorney Milhiser:

 

I am submitting this Victim Impact Statement concerning the sentencing today of Rick A. Pearson which is scheduled for 9:00 A.M.

 

I have attempted to serve a copy of my Statement on counsel for Mr. Pearson, but despite diligent Internet research could not find a web site, fax number or email address for Attorney John Sharp. I will keep trying.

 

 

 

I. Nature of this Statement

 

I a submitting these remarks as a Victim Impact Statement although I am a victim of Mr. Pearson’s alcoholism generally and not a victim of the specific offense for which he is being sentenced on Friday December 13th.

 

II. My history with Mr. Pearson

 

I first encountered Mr. Pearson exactly ten (10) years ago. I was in Jerusalem (Israel) and received a nasty email from Mr. Pearson. A request for information about Pearson to my email list elicited the information that he was a reporter. Despite Pearson’s aggressive hostility, I had never met Mr. Pearson and never had any contact with him of which I was aware, directly or indirectly. His nasty email came as a complete surprise.

 

Usually when someone is unpleasant they have had a prior history before sending a nasty email. Mr. Pearson and I had none.

 

Over the following years I was to encounter Mr. Pearson on numerous occasions.

 

I knew something was wrong. Mr. Pearson acted strange. In retrospect, I realize now that Mr. Pearson was in all likelihood intoxicated and that his intoxication triggered his abusive personality presentation. Mr. Pearson would become aggressive without any provocation (until approximately 2010 I had no fixed awareness of what he looked like).

 

Alcoholics are often able to conceal their alcoholism and quite cunning about how they mask alcoholism as personal aggression. I had one girl friend that was an alcoholic that had me fooled for years. Another one used to slip off and drink around 10:00 P.M. and fooled me as well. It took time to discover their illness. Thus, I believe that what I perceived as “creepiness” was really the internal conflict between Mr. Pearson’s alcoholism and personal aggression.

 

III. Mr. Pearson will kill if he is not stopped

 

Mr. Pearson has now been arrested twice for the same offense. Even though he was able to “skate” through the first offense the arrest apparently did not prod him into seeking treatment or assistance from organizations such as Alcoholics Anonymous. If he did seek treatment the treatment failed.

 

I recognize the traditional reluctance of the judicial system to sentence “white collar” defendants to jail for driving while intoxicated. But drunk drivers kill people every day because the judicial system dealt too leniently with their earlier offenses.

 

I respectfully suggest the Court impose a sentence of incarceration on Mr. Pearson. The Court should not be intimidated by Mr. Pearson’s employer or employment status. Drunk driving is not any less of an offense when it is committed by a newspaper reporter instead of a bricklayer. In fact, Mr. Pearson may believe that his media employment confers immunity from any imposition of serious punishment for his recidivism. It is obvious that the Chicago Tribune has allowed Mr. Pearson to keep driving within the scope of his employment despite Pearson’s earlier DUI.

 

If Mr. Pearson is allowed to slip through the cracks this time, he will drive drunk again, and he will eventually commit a serious accident and in all probability kill someone. Given the odds, and Mr. Pearson’s prior arrest, society cannot afford to take that risk.

 

I therefore urge the Court to impose the maximum penalty permitted by law both as a deterrent to Mr. Pearson as well as a deterrent to others who may be committing the same offense.

 

I am traveling today but could testify by phone if the Court wishes. Please call (917) 664-9329.

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

ANDY MARTIN

 

AM:sp

 

cc: John Sharp via fax (217) 726-5826

 

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