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Injured Firefighter Responds To Teen’s Probation

Posted by wlpo on March 7, 2012

Whether you agree or disagree with the 15 year old getting probation for his role in the Westclox fire, what’s done is done.

Steve Smith is the La Salle firefighter who was hurt battling the blaze.  He says he agrees with the sentence for the most part.  Working in corrections, he says a lengthy sentence to the department of juvenile justice would’ve exposed the teen to a gang and criminal element that’s not readily apparent in the Illinois valley.  Smith wrote a letter to the court suggesting 90 days evaluation by the state followed by probation and community service.

The firefighter does have a problem with the community service and restitution decisions.  He thinks the teen at minimum should serve twice the number of hours firefighters worked at Westclox.  Smith also thinks restitution should be split between the two accused teens.

Judge Dan Bute’s decision included no restitution for the 15 year old.

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