The Piercing Truth

This is right from the dictionary and seems to describe Albuquerque, Berry and Schultz. Fascism (f ash ,izem) noun An authoritarian right wing system of government and/or social organization. (in general use) extreme right wing, authoritarian, chauvinistic and/or intolerant views or practices. Fascism tends to include a belief in the supremacy of one group over another, national, ethnic, especially social strata or monetarily; a contempt for democracy, an insistence on obedience to a powerful leader, and a strong demagogic approach. Compliments of one of our Eyes

Mar 9, 2008


After a great deal of consideration and consultation with our Eyes behind the badge, we posted our first take on the Elton John Richard II case (read it here). Shortly after that post we received an email from Mr. Richard's father-in-law - which after obtaining permission we posted here.

Today, the Albuquerque Journal revisited the story and managed to do nothing to advance the story and plenty to muddy up the water (ABQ Journal - Subscription). From the moment we saw the front page above the fold story complete with photographs of the victim (Richard) and the deceased (Romero), we were irate. The Journal published photos of both men - one showing Richard accepting judgment, the other a happy "family-man" photo of Romero complete with smiling faces provided by Romero's family.
In defense of the Journal, an editor's note explained that the "The family of Elton John Richard asked the Journal not to publish a family portrait, citing privacy and safety concerns."

That should tell you something right there. The family of the felon feels it's perfectly acceptable to publish family photos with a convicted felon (Romero). They see no shame and there's no stigma attached - kind of like a badge of honor. Meanwhile, the family of the victim (Richard) is afraid to have their photos published.

At the very least the Journal could have found a photo of Romero with less spin and more appropriate to the situation. Let see... maybe a mug shot?
(End Sidebar)
The Journal's sub-head (Ex-Con's Cocaine Habit Catalyst in Run-In With Vet) was even worse as it provided a sympathetic excuse as to why an convicted felon was out doing what all too many convicted felons do - break the law. Although the rest of the story did a pretty good job of describing the lives of both men, the bias had already been established so the damage was already done.

The problem with this type of human interest story posing as news is that when you get right down to it the details of the lives of the two men are immaterial. Who cares that Romero had helped people on the roadside - he could have just as easily been robbing them. Who cares that Romero owed $400 to a drug dealer. Who cares that he was a coke head. None of those factors are pertinent to the fact that he chose to attempt steal Richard's vehicle. He chose to threaten Richard. He chose to attempt to avoid arrest. He chose to attack a determined Marine that knew how and when to use the weapon he carried.

The sad fact is that if Romero had simply waited with Richard in his front yard for the police to arrive he would be alive today. But that's not the sad part. The sad part is that he would have probably been out of jail the next day and out of prison by now.

It comes down to the fact that the why really doesn't matter. The fact is Romero was breaking the law, fleeing prosecution, and endangering the lives of others - period. We really wish that this thing had gone to trial. We believe that the DA's case would have boiled down to the word of a decorated Marine vs. that of a dead felon.

Think about it. Richard ran 1400 feet down streets, across fields, and over fences in his socks just to end the life of Romero a convicted felon? As a jury member it would be hard to believe that Richard ever intended kill Romero. At best the scenario that the DA would have presented at trial would have been hard to believe not to mention that the forensics were not at all conclusive. What's easier to believe - that Richard ran 467 yards to kill a man or that he ran 467 yards to take him into custody?

Prisons are great place for people like Romero who repeatedly endanger the lives of those around them and somehow believe that they have the right to take what they need regardless of the reason. In our opinion that pretty well fits the definition of a sociopath - someone who's utter disregard for those around him allows them to justify just about any action.

Elton John Richard II is clearly not a sociopath or a criminal for that matter. It serves no purpose for the state to send him to prison. And it serves no purpose for Richard to have to pay off the Romero family whose kindly ministrations allowed Romero to continue his criminal ways. Now the Romero family is busy trying to collect more blood money by pursuing a civil wrongful death suit.

We've all been the victim of petty theft. It's an invasion that leaves you insecure in your own home - even if that theft takes place in your driveway. Richard did a job that the system failed to do... keep us safe from people like Daniel Romero. He should be thanked for his determination to apprehend a common criminal. He certainly should not be treated like one. If ever there was a case deserving clemency or pardon this is it.

----- Post Script -----
We haven't done an Eye Poll in quite a while. However, the more we've learned about the Richard's case, the more we've moved toward a complete pardon by Governor Richardson. We'd love to know what you think. Weigh-in on this week's Eye Poll.


Anonymous said...

Billy Blackburn really made a mistake not taking this to trial. That is hindsight for the next honest citizen this happens to. Take your chances with a jury of 12, all you have to do is find one who agrees with you. That way you don't have to hang you life on a judge who wants you to show remorse, even if it is a lie.

Regarding the Journal, instead of just interviewing those folks who say what a great guy Romero was. Why didn't they find some of his victims and ask them how they felt about him.

Blackburn needs to move quickly on this. Judge Murdoch is not going to change his sentence. So when he makes that clear in court soon, Blackburn needs to have the paperwork ready to give to Richardson to give Elton a pardon.

ched macquigg said...

The Journal cannot be trusted as a source of the truth.

Someone other than I, first wrote,
Trust that man in nothing, who lacks conscience in anything.

The Journal has shown us more than enough lapses in conscience; to ask to ever be trusted again.

As we speak, the Journal is covering up the truth about the hiring of another good ol' boy to run the clubhouse at 6400 Uptown Blvd.

Keep it up eye.

You have done more for the city in a matter of weeks, than the Journal has since the rag was first printed.

Anonymous said...

Gov Richardson wasn't from NM and came here because he knew it would be easy to pull the wool over the eyes of uneducated sheep. He was gone for over a year, then came back just to bully the legislature. He'll be gone soon it's obvious, he won't give local media interviews anymore. Lets hope that before he leaves for DC he'll at least review the Richard case.

I agree, the Journal seems to be draging Richard thru the mud, again. What a great dad Romero was, working construction. Where did he get all that time to babysit, give bath's to little girls, snort coke, and victimize countless numbers of citizens? My guess would be public assistance?? And why does Romero's family get $500/month. Where is that money going to come from if Richard is incarcerated?

Journal- How come a nice cute picture of Romero?? And a crappy, but sad picture of Richard? He has a family also!

Anonymous said...

The Navajo have a saying when someone is like Romero, it is that they act as though they have no family.
If Romero was not a dirtbag piece of shit, he would have not had a 400 dollar debt for coke and he would not have embarrassed his family by using, stealing, and then bringing all the publicity to his family by resisting arrest by a guy who had stated that he was a cop. Now his piece of shit family is going to sue civilly for damages. What the hell kind of place is this? The rest of his family should be put out of town too for harboring someone so fucked up. Poor Romero, someone forced him to become addicted to coke. Stopping on the road to help someone? Shit, he was checking it out to see if he could steal their car.
As for Richard? He can live in my neighborhood anytime. I'll babysit his kids, and we can barbecue in the summer. We need more of him.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the Eye on this story in the Journal masquerading as journalism. Makes me want to quit reading this liberal rag, unfortunately with the Tribune gone we dont have much of a choice other than the internet. This costant portryal of Romero as the victim makes me sick!

Anonymous said...

The urinal article was atypical leftist posturing. Trying to parallel the lives of two good humans. Please, I consider myself a humanitarian who does believe in the inherant good in man, yet, ironically, I felt absolutely no compassion for Romero or his family. He was a piece of shit victimizing yet more members of our community and he got exactly what he deserved. Richard, I pray for you and your family, and your release from prison.

Anonymous said...

I have to state that I have great sympathy for Mr. Richard. In fact, I think he should be pardoned. On the other hand, what he did was perhaps illegal, but whether it was or not depends upon details that we do not know, in part because the case did not go to trial.

Having said that, I think we should ask Judge Murdoch (and the DA) a simple question: if Mr. Richard had been an Albuquerque police officer, would the DA or the Judge ever even permitted the case to go to trial? The answer, as I'm sure we all know, is no way! All a police officer has to do is state "I was afraid for my life" and the officer is exonerated from any killing.

For this reason alone, Richard should be pardoned, for police officers should be held to the same standards as the rest of us.

Anonymous said...

I'm a conservative person, conservative voter, etc. But Richard f*'ed up when he chased Romero down and shot him. No, Richard is not a criminal, the man he shot is a career criminal. The law is the law is the law. Keep their personalities out of this and just look at the law and make a decision based solely on the caselaw.
It's easy to root for the "good guy" a lot harder not to root for anyone, and make a decision based on the facts of the case, i.e., the law. The Gov. should not intervene and pardon Richard.

Anonymous said...

We have become a nation of wimps

ched macquigg said...

Did Richard break the law by chasing the felon?

If he had successfully captured him, wouldn't we be celebrating him as a hero.

He was doing the right thing, when a bad thing happened. He wasn't chasing him to shoot him, he was chasing him to apprehend him.

Romero made choices to which Richard reacted,
legally, ethically, morally.

Richard would be enjoying the gratitude of his community right now, had not Romero done something that gave Richard no choice but to shoot him.

The law is the law is the law ...
is the kind of thinking that sets the bad guys free, and locks up heroes.

Anonymous said...

This Romero shit bag family should be done like the bastard Daniel.
Get out of this town and this state you shit bag bastards , all of you and take your shit bag
relatives with you back to Mexico where you all belong.

Anonymous said...

Basic tenant of the law is "you take your victim as you find him". If Romero had gotten into an altercation with a 90 year old man who subsequently died- Romero would be charged under felony murder rules.
IN this case Romero targeted a healthy young man, with training and backbone, whom happened to be armed and tried to do the right thing. To the above poster who asked had Richard caught Romero and held him for police - you are correct, he would have been a hero.

Anonymous said...

OK, like I said before I'm playing devils advocate, BUT nonetheless, if he was going to hold him till officers arrived on scene, why did he use deadly force??? Hey, just asking,

By the way, basically we're all just one gunshot away from hero status....


ched macquigg said...

Assume that he was going to hold him until officers arrive, and at that point Romero does something that leaves Richard no choice.

It does not follow that if he intended to hold Romero, there are no circumstances that would change the plan in a split second.

Someone else observed that all war battle plans go out the door when the bullets start flying.

What ever happened at the end of the struggle, tells us nothing at all about what led up to the end.

If Richard really wanted to shoot Romero, why would he run 400 yards in socks through sticks, rocks and all manner of crap, before shooting him?

Anonymous said...

Whatever. I'm sick of this illegal bullshit. I'm sick of this cultural ethnic hoodlum gangbanger mentality bullshit, and quite frankly I'm sick of you liberals always sticking up for these assholes and sticking it to the honest, hard working stiffs abiding by the law, etc, etc.
The man did right by us all and got rid of one more vermin. I say just shot these bastards and put them in the trash receptacle in your driveway for pick up. If 'your' criminal asshole needs killing over the week-end, it best that your trash pick up is on a Monday, otherwise if your trash day is Wednesday or Thursday, you'll need to add a little lime or alcohal to the trash receptacle.
I'm just saying.....

Anonymous said...

Yes a polic officer would havee been prosecuteed if hee chased some one down likee that, yes Richard would have been a hereo if he held him for Police, BUT HE DIDN'T, he made a bad choice and the Gov needs to stay our of it

Anonymous said...

The Governor does not have a dog in this fight.....stay out of it!

Anonymous said...

No! The Governor need to intervene and let this guy go back to his family in Texas. As for the Romeros, tough shit or just eat shit and go back to YOUR homeland and take your shit bag family wih you. Your not welcome here.
Get back to that third world piss hole Mexico where you all belong.

Anonymous said...

To the above poster, I don't thnk anything will change, dig in with our heels,,Iam glad Iam old and won't be here when things change for the worse

Anonymous said...

Why didn't he just cold cock him and wait for police backup? He surely would have be a "hero" had he done it that way, but now he does time because he did something stupid. Yeah, maybe Romero needed killin' but not just then. Shoulda waited--homeboy woulda been offed by some gangsta trash eventually, then gangsta trash would be awaiting sentencing instead of Richard. a two-ferr!

Anonymous said...

True enough I guess. Just get this Romero homey family trash off the streets.
Cops need to do more of this clean up out there and save us all a lot of time, trouble and money.
Just OFF these asshole banger bastards.
Oh and the Police Oversight Commission needs more NRA Conservatives on their board and back up the cops instead of these weenies that find fault in how they wack these pricks.( Romero types and others).
I'm just saying...

Anonymous said...

Yeah! NRA, excellent post! Let's show A LOT more support for officers out there- maybe now with this raise more people will want to be "a police" as they say in Baltimore.

And why are there so many weenies on the police oversight comm? Who decides whose on this commission? What a bunch of pukes....