Thursday, September 06, 2007

Texas Justice

Once again, we get some disturbing news from the Lone Star State.

Carter Albrecht, erstwhile of (Edie Brickell and) the New Bohemians and a mainstay of the Dallas indie rock, had one hell of a freakout the other night. Had a few drinks, and had been on Chantix, an anti-smoking drug with notoriously unpredictable side effects, for a few days, and he went nuts in the middle of the night, hit his girlfriend repeatedly and went on a screaming fit (which everyone including the girlfriend says was extremely atypical behavior for him), then ran out into the hall, and after some more yelling banged on a neighbor's door. One person who lived there told him to stop, but he didn't. Another person demanded he stop, but he kept yelling and banging on the door.

So the person inside shot him.

To death.

Yes, he claimed it was a 'warning shot.' Delivered through the closed and locked door at face level. Hit Albrecht in the head and killed him.

And, this being Texas, he was 'protecting his property' and thus committed no crime.

You can read about it in this New York Times analysis, where they go over the facts of the case and end up condemning... the anti-smoking drug.

Ok, ok - I'm not saying that the drug company is off the hook. If their product has the potential to make a kind, charming, brilliant and affectionate guy fly into a rage, then yes, that should be dealt with immediately and directly. But are we thinking it's a good idea to let the guy who pulled the trigger off the hook? And this is the 'liberal' New York Times. (In fairness, yesterday they published an article that took a longer look at Texas's Castle Doctrine "self defense" law)

Sorry guys, and I know that dude must have been scared, but this ain't ok.

Carter in happier days

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