Is justice about money?

I read this article on Friday and I was so incensed I couldn’t even find words to write about it.

On July 3, Martin Joel Erzinger, a Morgan Stanley Wealth Manager, allegedly veered onto the side of the road and hit a cyclist, Dr. Steven Milo, from behind, drove into a culvert, then drove away and left Milo for dead. He drove through next town before stopping to call Mercedes auto service to report damage to his car.

The prosecutor has decided not to charge Erzinger with felony hit and run because it might hurt his career.

“Felony convictions have some pretty serious job implications for someone in Mr. Erzinger’s profession, and that entered into it,” Hurlbert said. “When you’re talking about restitution, you don’t want to take away his ability to pay.”

Really? Isn’t that what insurance is for? People with that kind of wealth don’t carry cut-rate liability policies.

Dr. Milo was a liver transplant surgeon. Being mowed down on his bike, suffering a brain bleed and spinal cord injuries had serious job implications for him, too.

What other craven felonies can a person commit and be let off easy because felony convictions have “serious job implications?”

Bike Master at Abandon Your Car has posted a petition and a phone number if you’d like to give the prosecutor a piece of your mind.

Thanks to Andy Cline for this.

UPDATE: 11/9 Ohio Bike Lawyer, Steve Magas has written some excellent commentary about this case.

5 replies
  1. NE2
    NE2 says:

    Alternate explanation: the prosecutor knew that a jury would probably acquit (because who cares about those dumb cyclists) so went with a surer way of hitting Erzinger. It’s probably not true, but just thought I’d throw it out there.

  2. Khal Spencer
    Khal Spencer says:

    Money buys elections, money buys power, and money lets you walk away from the scene of a crime. Its getting tougher and tougher to live in America without holding your nose.

  3. bencott
    bencott says:

    unfortunately this case isn’t just about the system helping a prominent individual to evade justice. although that’s happening, there’s also an element of the widely held perception that people who reach a certain level of wealth and success in their field are better than common people, and they aren’t subject to the same bounds of law and morals. i’m sure mr. erzinger holds the same perception, which is why he didn’t feel the need to stop and help another human being that he mowed down with his car.

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