Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Private Matter?

It seems that Rudy Giuliani's daughter got pinched for shoplifting after being caught on camera secreting more than $100 in make-up from a Sephora store in Manhattan.

There are two aspects to the news report that warrant commentary here.

A. "Store managers, after calling police, said they didn't want to press charges against her, [NYPD spokesperson Paul] Browne said. But police arrested her on a petty larceny charge, he said. … … The Manhattan district attorney's office had not decided whether to file formal charges against her, office spokeswoman Erin Duggan said."

Is Caroline Giuliani being accorded a special pass because she is Rudy Giuliani's daughter? It may well make good business sense to not press charges against her. For one thing, it takes up the manager's time to go to court as a witness. Moreover, so long as no charges are filed, everyone can come to an understanding whereby Caroline not only will never do it again, but may even pe persuaded to come back and spend her money at the store. If charges are filed, the store will forever lose a customer.

But is the same standard being applied to Caroline Giuliani as would be applied to anyone else's daughter who gets caught shoplifting cosmetics at Sephora?

B. "Her father, through a spokeswoman, said the case was a personal matter and asked the media to respect her privacy."

This time I beg to differ with Rudy! Criminal charges are, by definition, public causes of action. Unless and until Caroline is acquitted, or charges dropped, the public has an interest in the case.

Query: How much of a "private matter" were the criminal cases brought in the Southern District of New York when Rudolph Giuliani was serving as the United States Attorney there?

Quite frankly, I am of the sentiment that the criminal charges at issue are so petty and picayune and penny-ass that if the victim (the Sephora cosmetics store) is okay with letting them slip, then the government resources should not be burdened by the prosecution of the case. This is particularly so in light of the fact that Caroline Giuliani is apparently not a hardened criminal, and can be swiftly rehabilitated to return to her place as a law-abiding citizen in society (not to mention a spender of money to stimulate the sagging economy).

But the public needs reassurances that Caroline's case is not being spotted any special favors.

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