For those of us who have never been behind bars, one of the more fascinating aspects of prison life is the convicts’ code of moral conduct. They have their own internal justice system, according to scores of accounts, and the standards they apply seem to be fairly consistent across all jurisdictions. Whether you’re a federal, state, or local prisoner, there are certain crimes which are tolerated by other inmates, some that are even celebrated, but there are others that are completely taboo. And if you’re one who’s been convicted of an off-limits crime, you could have a big problem.
Rob a bank, carjack a new Mustang, or pummel a rival drug dealer on a street corner, and your crime will be irrelevant during your time as a prisoner. But if you’ve been convicted of something freaky like Jeffrey Dahmer, or if you’ve sinned against a beloved institution that other convicts hold sacred, and you’ll very likely have very difficult time.
But there is no crime more despised by other convicts than those which have been committed against children, particularly sexual assault. A convicted pedophile’s life as an inmate is reportedly terrifying, spending every waking moment with their head on a swivel and looking over their shoulder for an attacker.
Was this prospect in the back of a Texas convict’s mind when he was convicted of five counts of sexual assault against minors? According to NBC News:
“A Texas man charged with five counts of child sexual assault died after a jury convicted him and he chugged a bottle of liquid in the courtroom, his lawyer said Friday.
After the first count was read on Thursday afternoon and the Denton County jury returned a guilty verdict, Edward Leclair, 57, started drinking from a plastic water bottle filled with what appeared to be clear liquid, lawyer Mike Howard said.
‘I looked over and noticed him drinking,’ Howard said. ‘His hand was shaking. At the time, I thought it was shaking because of the verdict. Then he kept drinking and drinking.’”
We must note that Mr. Leclair maintained he was not guilty throughout the entire legal process. He was adamant about his innocence. We must also note, however, that he was duly convicted of the crimes by a jury of his peers.
Since Leclair had been free on bail, his activities were not restricted in a way that someone standing trial that had been incarcerated already would be. In other words, Leclair came to court that day from the outside, not from a jail cell, and he brought in his ‘water’ bottle himself, apparently. Therefore, he could have spiked its contents with whatever he pleased. And he appears to have taken matters into his own hands in anticipation of a worst-case scenario.
Ultimately, this is a sad story all the way around. Multiple young people’s innocence was stolen from them, and they may never be the same again. And now a 57-year-old man has apparently delivered a sentence of self-execution upon himself. Were Leclair’s actions a result of the future existence he was looking at? Did he dread the idea of being prey for the rest of his life that much? Or, perhaps, was he simply ashamed?
No matter the motivation, a convicted sexual predator has now met his maker. May God have mercy on his soul, and may his victims achieve a complete recovery.
By Jordan Case
Notice: This article may contain commentary that reflects the author’s opinion.
Photo by Matthew Ansley on Unsplash
This story syndicated with permission from The Blue State Conservative
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