EDITORIAL

Heric Rubio

On Oct. 12, the City College community lost one of its youngest members.

Nineteen-year-old Diana Gonzalez was brutally killed on campus. Authorities accuse her husband, Armando Perez, 37.

This can be a cruel, heartless world and unfortunately, these evil things sometimes happen. Sometimes there is nothing that can be done to prevent these acts of maliciousness. There can be no good in this world if not for the bad.

That is not the case in this instance. Gonzalez’s killing is something that very well could have been prevented and it is up to us to make sure that the people who allowed this to happen answer to the family, friends and everyone that has felt pain.

On Sept. 21, according to authorities, Gonzalez was kidnapped by Perez at the Inspiration Point parking lot and held captive for three days, during which it is believed Perez raped, strangled and threatened Gonzalez with death. The injuries that Gonzalez sustained should have been evidence enough for a case against Perez. But sometimes the justice system truly is blind.

Police and attorneys were almost positive that they had cases for false imprisonment, kidnapping, spousal abuse, criminal threats and rape. However, when they presented this to the district attorney’s office, they declined to prosecute.

In an interview with KPBS investigative reporter Amita Sharma, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis explained that they were “unable to file charges because there was not proof beyond a reasonable doubt.”

No proof beyond a reasonable doubt, D.A. Dumanis?

Maybe the burst capillaries in Gonzalez’s eyes and face from the choking, which takes about 33 pounds of pressure to cause, weren’t enough? How about the swollen tongue from being unable to swallow? No? How about the bruises and bloody nose?

None of this meant anything to the district attorney. In the same interview, Dumanis went on to say that she and her office want to make sure that they hold the right person responsible for Gonzalez’s death. And who could this possibly be? There is only one suspect, and he has apparently run off to Mexico. Still have some doubt, Dumanis? Still want to make sure you get the right bad guy?

It has been said that there is no greater sin than doing nothing to prevent sin. The district attorney had the power to keep Perez off the streets after seeing what had been done to Gonzalez.

She chose instead to follow the law by the books. She didn’t have her overwhelming evidence. What should she have asked for? A videotape of the kidnapping with Perez holding up an I.D. to prove it was him?

Sure, it’s important to be sure before accusing or arresting someone. Sometimes, though, you’re not going to get that “without a doubt” piece of evidence. Sometimes you’re going to have to go with your gut and see what’s right in front of you. Sometimes you have to risk doing something wrong in order to do right.

The laws and leaders of this country were put in place in order to protect us and maintain some semblance of order. A problem arises when those leaders refuse to do what they must know is the right thing because it doesn’t fall in line with the laws or because they don’t want to hurt their political careers.

Every rule was made to be broken. When the enforcers of those rules don’t believe that, the only things left broken are hearts and lives.