BWC pleads to misdemeanor; consequences limited

Submitted by Butterfield on June 14th, 2012 at 11:01 AM

As expected, Big Will just needs to pay $2100 damages to the owner of the '03 Lincoln Town Car (did he total it, an '03 town car can't be much more than $2100 in pristine condition!) and stay out of trouble for a year.  Glad the courts used common sense in this one:

http://www.freep.com/article/20120614/SPORTS06/120614022/michigan-football-william-campbell-will-arrest?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|Sports 

 

Comments

Everyone Murders

June 14th, 2012 at 1:46 PM ^

Your statement suggests that any matter charged needs to be tried.  I'm curious as to the basis for your statement (not trying to be combative here - my curiosity is genuine). 

I may be dead wrong on this, but I've always thought that a prosecutor can drop a case at virtually any point prior to trial, and sometimes during trial.  That's half of prosecutorial discretion (the other half is the discretion as to whether to bring charges in the first place).  Sometimes prosecuters feel political pressure to try a case, but they also drop charges all the time.  (Witness the Duke LAX case for an example.) 

 

reshp1

June 14th, 2012 at 1:53 PM ^

I think you're right but cases are usually dropped because the prosecutor doesn't think there's enough evidence or they don't have a strong case. In the case of the Duke lax players, there was clearly no crime at all. Neither is the case here. Will Campbell obviously did slid across and damaged the car, so I think it would be harder for the prosecutor to drop the case on a purely "boys will be boys" rationale. I think the discretion would be excercised during sentencing, which it sounds like they did do the fair thing and just made him pay for damages.

FgoWolve

June 14th, 2012 at 7:49 PM ^

This matter started because a policeman saw Campbell sliding across the car. This wasn't the car owner spotting Campbell and taddling on him. Once the cop caught him, it was going criminal.

The prosecutor does have the power to drop a case whenever he/she wants, but why would they in this situation? They had a strong case, and they made an easy deal. Technically, they did keep it private for Big Will, because as long as he completes his probation, it will ultimately be suppressed from his record because he is under 21.

Tater

June 14th, 2012 at 7:57 PM ^

Thirty years ago, this would never have made it to criminal court, and BWC would have gone to small claims court if he didn't agree to pay for the damages.  Prosecutors are so hungry for "wins" that they don't use common sense or a smidgen of decency when charging people anymore.  

When it's a high-profile athlete, they seem to feel the need to show how "tough" and "fair' they are, and that they "aren't showing favoritism."  Our system is totally bleeped up, and it only looks to get worse in the future.

Blue-Chip

June 14th, 2012 at 11:05 AM ^

I'm glad this was the outcome. Football aside, he didn't do anything malicious. He was just being goofy and stupid and there was a bad outcome. The felony charge was an example of how screwed up the justice system can get.

DonAZ

June 14th, 2012 at 12:07 PM ^

"He was just being goofy and stupid and there was a bad outcome."

Which of us didn't do something goofy and stupid in our youth with a bad outcome? 

I can say with some embarrassment that I did ... and it involved an arrest ... but thankfully no prosecutorial action. (Phew!)

Brings up a quick story -- I was recently called for Jury duty here in Tucson.  During jury selection one of the questions asked of all prospective jurors was whether they had ever been arrested or convicted of anything.  A fair number answered "yes," including one young man who indicated he'd been arrested for vandalism.  He added, "But I got that bit of stupid out of me and it won't happen again."  The judge smiled.

bluewave720

June 14th, 2012 at 12:21 PM ^

If there ever was a time to use the phrase "boys will be boys," I think this is it.  He deserves a penalty, which he got, which wont lead to a long term issue as long as he keeps his head on straight.  Very reasonable, IMO.

TdK71

June 14th, 2012 at 1:24 PM ^

"Boys will be Boys"

Sometimes you just don't realize how big you have grown, and get a little carried away.

He's owning up to his responsibilities and paying restitution. I think he's met all the obligations laid out before him.

Erik_in_Dayton

June 14th, 2012 at 11:07 AM ^

The hoods of the cars of the people of AA can rest easily tonight...Seriously, though, this is a perfectly sensible outcome.  I mean, it's not like he urinated in public with one of his teammates, like you do if you're in league with Satan

LSA Aught One

June 14th, 2012 at 11:16 AM ^

the rules are in Michigan, but in some states it's 50% of value.  Since this will not be an insurance claim, it doesn't matter.  If it had, the damage would have been close to total according to KBB.com.

http://www.kbb.com/lincoln/town-car/2003-lincoln-town-car/executive-sedan-4d/?vehicleid=2684&intent=trade-in-sell&mileage=100000&category=sedan&options=105969|true&pricetype=trade-in#survey

Mr. Rager

June 14th, 2012 at 11:49 AM ^

You bring up a good point but it's probably not valid here (other than the cost of the rental car).

Apologies if my being lazy means I am totally wrong - but if a 300 LB man slid across the roof of a car while drunk - he could EASILY do $2.1K of damage just to the body of the car - leaving it totally driveable (which would negate any towing fees or loss of use).  

reshp1

June 14th, 2012 at 11:31 AM ^

Wish it would have been dismissed and handled privately, but I guess if an arrest was made that would have been tough. Good news overall, I'm guessing some running and puking is in the young man's future.

LSAClassOf2000

June 14th, 2012 at 12:08 PM ^

This sounds pretty reasonable - restitution and stay out of trouble for a year. Glad to see that the city didn't try to play hardball on something this minor. This is probably the best end for this story short of it being handled out of court, which would have been ideal perhaps.

NateVolk

June 14th, 2012 at 11:04 PM ^

He got an MIP too. This isn't any small deal when you are talking about accountability and standards. I hope he sits out Bama personally. That would send the right message.