Archive for Friday, June 30, 2006

Restaurant robber receives probation

June 30, 2006


A man who robbed a Lawrence restaurant earlier this year while armed with a BB gun was granted probation during a Thursday court hearing.

Douglas County Judge Paula Martin placed Michael S. Moreno, 19, of Lawrence, on probation for three years. His probation will be served through Douglas County Community Corrections.

Moreno had pleaded guilty to three counts of robbery in connection with an incident Jan. 3 at Taco John's, 1626 W. 23rd St.

Moreno also is waiting for a bed at an in-patient substance abuse treatment center in Atchison.

Moreno's co-defendant, Michael J. McDonald, 17, of Leavenworth, already had been placed on probation after entering a plea to one count of aggravated robbery.


Michael McClain 11 years, 9 months ago

Probation for robbery? I hope that doesn't send a message to the younger people that a slap on the wrist is all a person will get for the crime.

Michael Birch 11 years, 9 months ago

For me, its called giving a mixed-up young person a

second chance at life. Getting them the treatment that

they need to stay off of drugs and function properly in

society. The bottom line-Nobody got hurt. The offender

was remorseful and took responsibility for his actions.

Hopefully, we saved him from incarceration and a life of

crime. Thanks Martin, your finally starting to do

something right!


justsomewench 11 years, 9 months ago

"Moreno also is waiting for a bed at an in-patient substance abuse treatment center in Atchison."

For now, the county jail should suffice nicely as an in-patient substance abuse facility. Beyond that, I sincerely doubt Valley Hope would put him on a waiting list. I hope someone checked on that.

justsomewench 11 years, 9 months ago

i've never known them to put someone on hold, is my point.

in the very least, you'd think they'd refer him to an opening at one of their other facilities. doncha?

i'm familiar with the black ribbons, enf. very few make it indeed.

Steve Mechels 11 years, 9 months ago

Gosh, I sure hope he has learned his lesson! Oh wait, what lesson was it again? I'll bet he never does that again. These are not children we are dealing with; time out is not effective. This is a 19 year old that should know there are consequences for illegal actions. Oops, what was I thinking...I guess there aren't any consequences!

Jamesaust 11 years, 9 months ago

Hmmm...maybe the court is taking a page from England where earlier this year policy was changed so that the police had discretion whether to arrest people for common assault, robbery, theft - or just give them a verbal warning.

Robbery with a BB gun is a violent act. We're not talking about pilfering some cash or speeding. People who commit one violent act are highly likely to commit other violent acts.

Why does the State not have a substance abuse treatment center in a separate PRISON for persons like this? Punishment and treatment would seem to be called for in many cases.

Fatty_McButterpants 11 years, 9 months ago

How come every time I hear about a criminal in Douglas County getting a huge, ridiculous break it is followed soon after by "Judge Paula Martin"?! This lady has got to go. She doesn't want to dispense punishment - she wants to hold hands and sing "Kum bai yah!".

Bad judge! Bad!

Rhoen 11 years, 9 months ago

The judge seems to live in a world of her own (one that has Cheshire cats, hookah-smoking caterpillars and power-crazed Queens).

You have to applaud the Judge's self-confidence and courage in her convictions though. She is certainly not afraid to use her judicial power to permanently knit her opinions and attitudes into the lives of who appear before her.

And if some those opinions, beliefs, and choices bother the people of Douglas County, that need not concern the Judge. Anyone who doesn't like it will just need to get over it. She showed them all who was boss in the last election, did she not?

kingdork44 11 years, 9 months ago

Yes, I hope this person does get treatement, Somewhere. And returns to pick up his coffee cup, and tell his story. I myself coming from a father that was an addict. He shattered that cup, which is still laying broken on the rocks. Humpty fell off the wall and made his family suffer tremendously. I hope he realizes the chance that the judge gave him.

valermeow 11 years, 9 months ago

except I know Mike Moreno and he diddnt use drugs maybe you should not judge him when you do not know him and there wasnt anything even in the bb gun so no intentions of hurting anyone...

Rhoen 11 years, 9 months ago

The man with the BB gun robbing the establishment was really really lucky that law enforcement did not arrive on the scene.

It would have made NO difference that the gun was not a lethal weapon - It would undoubtedly have been lethal for HIM when the police opened fire.

So the probation was actually his second lucky break in this event. Hopefully, he will have hit bottom with this and take the opportunity to salvage the life he still has.

Mike Curtis 11 years, 9 months ago

"and there wasnt anything even in the bb gun so no intentions of hurting anyone..." Well there you have it... the gun was unloaded, so let him go! Thats hilarious "valermeow"! He's actually a victim, yeah thats it. If he came in my house with a gun, BB or otherwise, he WOULD be a victim!

justsomewench 11 years, 9 months ago

he's not a drug user, yet he's going to seek in-patient treatment (which usually runs a tab nearing $10k)? sounds like a waste of a bed and a disservice to the folks at the center who are actually trying to embrace the most important concept in their lives and aren't just looking for a step-up in amenities from the county jail.

Kelly Powell 11 years, 9 months ago

That means he was a raging alcoholic then.....Honey when somebody commits armed robbery you are not going to convince people he is a nice guy who is misunderstood. As for it being unloaded.....Who cares! He was using it as a tool to scare people and I bet he was willing to pistol whip somebody with it.....It being a bb gun just means he didnt have a real pistol handy or that he was hoping for a reduced sentance if he got caught.....which proves pre meditation of the crime..

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